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Buyantukhaa
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Joined: Thu May 13, 2004 5:33 am

Lockheed Loses US Spyplane Order

Sat Jan 14, 2006 10:53 am

This may have been posted earlier, but as the article doesn't specify the plane type designation, it was difficult to do a search. So, here it goes:

US defence firm Lockheed Martin has lost an $879m (£497m) contract to build a new spyplane for the US armed forces. The company has had problems with the weight of the aircraft, something analysts put down to the fact it had to meet too many operational criteria. Should the spyplane program have reached full production it could have been worth as much as $8bn.

[...]

"After carefully evaluating Lockheed's proposals, we decided that the prudent course of action at this time was to terminate the contract," said Claude Bolton, the Army's chief weapons buyer. Analysts said that the main problem facing the company was that despite a number of redesigns, the plane was just too small and heavy to meet its operational requirements.

Observers said that Lockheed was faced with a complicated brief that may have led to problems from the start. "The government should never have tried to develop one system to meet the very different needs of the Army and Navy," said Loren Thompson, a defence analyst with the Lexington Institute. Ms Thompson explained that while the Navy wanted a plane to intercept communications, the Army wanted one to perform more specific missions such as locating radio transmissions on a battlefield.

"It would have produced a flying albatross," she said.

Lockheed, which won the contract over rival Northrop Grumman in 2004, had originally proposed using a plane built by [Embraer]. When the problems emerged, it was reported that the company had considered switching to a larger jet made by [] Bombardier.

[...]


http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/4608602.stm
I scratch my head, therefore I am.
 
sidishus
Posts: 488
Joined: Mon Oct 25, 2004 1:45 am

RE: Lockheed Loses US Spyplane Order

Sun Jan 15, 2006 12:00 am

Quoting BuyantUkhaa (Thread starter):
Lockheed, which won the contract over rival Northrop Grumman in 2004, had originally proposed using a plane built by [Embraer]. When the problems emerged, it was reported that the company had considered switching to a larger jet made by Bombardier

Loren Thompson is a guy.

The G550 is too small-and too fragile-for the job as well. So don't let that Bovine Effluent fool you.

Rhetoric aside, the whole mission concept is really becoming obsolete anyway. The rapid blurring of "Sensors" and "Shooters", and the emergence of the surface and air threats that make such aircraft operationally untenable, are factors that demand an entirely different approach.
the truth: first it is ridiculed second it is violently opposed finally it is accepted as self-evident

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