tjh8402 wrote:Any enemy Air Force would absolutely have challenges trying to attack a European country. The problem is the Russians and others are less reliant on air superiority than we are. There have been no shortage of reports in simulation stating that a Russian army could easily overrun Eastern Europe. They don't need air superiority to do that. What they can do though is utilize their IADS to neutralize Western air assets, which we are dependent on.
I don't think the fear is so much Russian fighters and bombers over Germany and Poland. It's an active S300/S400 system in Kaliningrad, or God forbid, hypothetically in the hands of ethnic Russian revolutionaries in Poland who have suddenly decided to overthrow the Polish government and join Russia. With that, they could keep all 4th generation assets out of any conflict zone and deprive NATO of its needed air power. We lose much more by having our air assets grounded than they do.
That being said, Russians do have long range aircraft launched cruise missiles that can be safely fired from out of the range of Western SAMs. if you want to hunt those in airspace protected by enemy SAMs, you need a LO fighter to penetrated that airspace. The F35 will give the capability to establish air superiority not only over friendly territory, but enemy territory as well.
Ozair wrote:While it may be easy to say they can do it we can see with both Russia and China that their first big attempts have arrived with compromises.
The other side of that is the F-35 will continue to move forward, just as the 4th gen aircraft have done. There are already plans for a new engine with more thrust and more range, 5th gen weapons and likely upgraded radar with new technology.
Ozair wrote:The Rafale, Eurofighter and A400M were all sold internally on the premise of large export potential and frankly all have failed to deliver on that. The A400M still has a chance, for the previous two their time has gone. I would be very sceptical of promising exports for a European jet that may either never reach production or be procured in such small numbers that the per unit costs are simply too high to provide wide export appeal.
It certainly will. It will also remain a single-seater jet and will face even more space constraints than 4th gen AC because it cannot simply attach electronic devices on the outside. It also uses fairly old systems (20 years by now) and I am quite certain that LM will try to avoid any major systems overhaul. Processing power has increased significantly and there may be some abilities to be won by that.
mxaxai wrote:Regarding China's and Russia's struggle with stealth, I expect similar problems to come up with the new european fighter. But I consider the knowledge to be invaluable to have in the EU. We may depend on the current military might of the USA but we cannot just let them have a monopoly on advanced weapon systems and knowledge thereof.
mxaxai wrote:They never really stood a chance against the F-16. And frankly, any competitor will struggle against the F-35. They are simply too cheap for what they do. Even the F-15 and F-18 never really got exported. We talk a lot about all-out wars against a comparable enemy but reality is that most fighters will never even fire a live weapon except for ocassional training. Most countries go for the cheapest solution that can do a little bit of everything, one of the reasons why the Gripen exported so well.
mxaxai wrote:All international weapons trade is also a political decision. Most countries affiliated with the west would rather pursue good relations with the US than with a european country. Particularly if they have the money to not go for the cheapest option. There is also the point of the US maintaining large fleets themselves and all over the world, so maintenance and training is quite easy to get.
I do not expect this new fighter to be a sales hit. But everyone who currently operates or operated Eurofighters, Rafales, F-18s, Tornados and F-15s is a possible buyer, although this will likely not be as good a air to air fighter as particuarly the EF is.
I agree on the west's dependance on air superiority. But a single SAM battery will not pose a real challenge, particularly if operated by non-governmental forces. Also remember that the west operates their own cruise missiles and that, in the end, cruise missiles are just explosíve UAVs that are neither stealthy nor particularly fast. No doubt though that stealth is necessary to loiter in contested airspace. For a CAS role, supporting their ground troops, the F35 may actually be the best.
A single SAM battery may not pose a threat, but the S300/S400 is usually not a single battery. It's a modular networked system of missiles, launchers and radar stations. It's as potent as they want it to be. It's range means that one system deployed across Kaliningrad means shutting down Polish airspace. When I referenced it being in the hands of hypothetical Polish Russian revolutionaries, the implication was that like with the situation in Ukraine, these wouldn't actually be just Poles, but Russian forces posing as Polish rebels. In their trained hands, the system would be extremely dangerous. bring up cruise missiles just as an example of an air launched threat that our SAMs may not be able to defeat, and which would require air superiority over hostile territory to neutralize. I do think it's a secondary concern to high end SAM systems keeping our air forces from providing CAS, which I think we agree is the primary advantage of the F35.
A new, full spectrum approach to close air support (CAS) must be developed in order for US forces to optimally operate with ground forces across all levels of conflict. Counterinsurgency and irregular warfare operations in low threat environments will persist for the foreseeable future. Legacy aircraft will be effective in those scenarios, but other future conflicts will take place in highly contested anti-access/area denial (A2/AD) environments. These will contain lethal anti-aircraft threats to which less advanced, non-stealthy aircraft are intrinsically vulnerable. Fifth generation aircraft afford survivability in A2/AD environments via stealth. Their sensors collect enormous amounts of data, which they fuse into a picture of the tactical situation. These “sensor-effector” aircraft will share this information with joint forces across all domains—land, sea, space, and cyberspace—as part of a jam-proof construct known as the “combat cloud.” This common detailed picture of an entire battlespace will enable US and allied joint forces to integrate and coordinate their various capabilities to produce desired tactical effects. This cross-domain approach will be most effective when these sensor effector aircraft are free to act quickly in response to evolving tactical scenarios.New methods of command and control (C2) that capitalize on the situational awareness (SA) created in the combat cloud will permit efficient, decentralized execution at the tactical level. To optimize ground force effectiveness, sensor effector aircraft will act as “quarterbacks,” making on-the-spot decisions and rapidly coordinating the weapons effects of “players” across all domains to target enemy forces before they can target our own.
Ozair wrote:Respectfully, this is why I struggle with a lot of posters on airliners.net commenting on the F-35. What you have stated is simply not true. For starters, the systems are not 20 years old, they are much less than that and the jet has several free avionics bays to take new electrical systems. Second, LM is already proposing upgrades to some systems, such as the EOTS which will likely be upgraded for Blk 4 jets. This will continue to occur through blk 4 and blk 5 and beyond. Lastly, the F-35 was specifically designed to be essentially modular with its processing power. The jet has already received a processor upgrade and will receive another when it progresses to the next blk upgrade. This was designed in to the jet from the start. The US expects this jet to serve until 2070, they are not going to abandon it to technology from the 2010s.
Finally, the USA is actively planning for and developing DEW for the F-35 amongst other jets. You can't get more future proofed than that.
Understand that but at some point Europe may fall behind as it cannot invest enough funds to maintain parity.
Not sure where you get your export numbers from. The F-15 is operated by USA, Japan, Israel, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Korea and ordered by Qatar, all of which total more exports than the Eurofighter and Rafale combined. The classic Hornet is operated by USA, Australia, Canada, Spain, Kuwait, Malaysia, Finland and Switzerland, again more exports than Eurofighter and Rafale combined. The Gripen has a terrible export record, being operated in small numbers by second or third tier air forces, just Sweden, Czech republic, Hungray, South Africa, Thailand and soon Brazil and having lost a host of competitions. It may win in India improving its overall export success.
One of the main fallouts between Germany/UK/Italy and France previously was the size of the proposed Eurofighter airframe. France wanted a smaller plane more suited to its needs and to likely greater potential export. The bigger size of the potential new jet will turn a lot of future operators away given the greater maintenance and cost of two engines and two aircrew.
Ok, I didn't know they wanted to operate them quite that long. It always seemed to finish sometime around 2050.
If Europe reaches the 2% goal and stops buying US fighters and/or sells some of its own to the US funding parity is easily achieved. It's more about the desire than the ability to do so.
Nevertheless the large twin engine fighters, F15, F18, EF and Rafale all got exported a bit, and the Eurofighter and Rafale ended up being very, very similar. Also note that the Eurofighter outsold the Rafale by a factor of 4. Obviously both dwarf compared to their US counterparts.
This cannot and should not compete directly with the F-35, it should be able to complement it. It should also be able to complement the existing fighters.
Ozair wrote:Hence, I don’t see a strong export case for the new European Fighter if it becomes a larger longer ranged twin engine jet over existing Eurocanards. Additionally, I don’t expect France to agree to replace the Rafale with an airframe like that.
The only factor I see changing the above assessment is technological change in the form of DEW and unmanned companion aircraft. This may present future problems for the traditional WVR fight above what the F-22/35 have brought to the market. It may influence fighter design to larger, heavier, less manoeuvrable airframes equipped with DEW for both self defence and offensive action as well as the loyal UCAV wingman concept.
I don’t pretend to know all the answers but flashy airbus ppt slides means little when a review of the previous, current and expected future market shows the business case for the concept has a couple of big holes in it.
mxaxai wrote:Neither do I know everything. Yet, over the past decade UAV have taken over a quite significant role for ground attack and surveillance. As time progresses, I expect uncrewed vehicles to take over many more missions, both in the air, the sea and on the ground. It will become increasingly important to coordinate these assets and provide data on their surroundings. Today, most UCAV are controlled from remote bases at home, striking unaware targets that were often preselected far in advance.
mxaxai wrote:The Eurofighter, while first flown in 1990, also was only recently introduced to "full" combat capability and will certainly last at least until 2040. I can assure you that the public will not accept funding a ridiculously expensive replacement for the latest and greatest equipment the Luftwaffe owns while at the same time fighters lack maintenance - not spare parts - , while pilots get preciously little time in the air, while many of the surface combat forces struggle with both old equipment and poor maintenance as well.
France and Germany said their new combat system, which analysts say could involve a mixture of manned and unmanned aircraft, would replace the Rafale and Eurofighter, rival jets that compete fiercely for global sales.
mxaxai wrote:The current models should also perform quite well in WVR combat, something a larger jet may not be quite as well in. Assuming a more conventional conflict, the need to identify the UFO before shooting - like in Vietnam - may prevent large scale BVR missile exchanges.
mxaxai wrote:Regarding the Rafale, I expect them to keep it like Germany keeps the Eurofighter. They really are so similar. For the naval role, they might even want to buy the F-35C but I agree that anything larger than the Rafale will struggle on carriers. Meanwhile, carrier operations usually do not operate in enironments where many SAM batteries are up unless engaging another carrier. Unlike ground strike missions, they also rely less on dropping bombs or gathering intel so they can maintain a larger distance from the threat. There is less of a need for stealth there.
Ozair wrote:I agree that UCAVs will play a greater and more important role in future battlefields. I am not yet sure how fully autonomous operations will go with dynamic targeting. We have cruise and ballistic missiles that can engage pre-selected targets but how confident will a military be to release a UCAV over a future battlefield that will find, assess and engage its own targets with no feedback or confirmation from home base?
If we do see DEW enter the air battle then WVR as we know it will end and even now WVR combat is essentially gone with HOBS missiles and HMS. BVR is also easier now than it has ever been given better sensors and fusion of those sensors with external feeds and datalinks available in a number of platforms.
National pride, and the capability of French carriers, will likely see no purchase of the F-35C by France but carrier borne Rafale and US SH aircrew are trained to operate in high threat environments. Certainly the USMC is not purchasing the F-35B because it wants to operate in low threat environments. The primary role of carrier aviation over the last 35 years has been to strike land targets and if the worst happened and a Korea conflict occurred you can be assured that USN carrier airwings would be flying ops in the very thick of it.
mxaxai wrote:I meant that a larger crewed vehicle will assess the situation continuusly to deploy their UCAV support ad-hoc. This vehicle can then update the accompanying UCAV's target information in-flight and very quickly. An aircraft that needs to maneuver in a high-threat environment while coordinating ground and air forces should have two crew members. Otherwise you risk information overload and reduced effectivity.
mxaxai wrote:BTW: What do you mean with DEW? D... early warning?
mxaxai wrote:Unless your radar can safely differ between attacking aircraft, other -possibly neutral- military aircraft and civilian aircraft you will need to get quite close to safely identify the UFO. Otherwise you risk situations like IR655, KE007 or MH17. Particularly when you need to cross neutral air space or do not have an official declaration of war (like in Syria, or Ukraine).
mxaxai wrote:Nevertheless the Navy wants to keep some Super Hornets until 2040. But I agree that the French will probably not order the F-35. That however means that the Armée de l'Air has a requirement for a home-grown successor or addition to the Rafale anyway. Why not partner up with Germany?
At no point in time and with neither 1st, 2nd, 3rd or 4th gen aircraft the line along the iron curtain could be crossed and enemy airspace could be penetrated without having to expect heavy losses. I don't believe that the F-35 does make any difference in that. The S400 is currently tailored against F-35. If war breaks out in Europe, nobody will be able to send aircraft to destroy enemy air bases.
Ozair wrote:So there is a stark example of what you want to believe against what the text actually says. The article you linked clearly states that the Singapore Minister for defence, said on both occasions he visited the US to look at the jet, that they weren’t in a hurry to order.
Ozair wrote:From the article you quoted,Dr Ng, who saw the F-35 in action in 2013, visited Luke Air Force Base in Arizona last December, on the sidelines of an exercise, to see another variant of the jet. He said on both occasions that Singapore was in no hurry to make a purchase.
So in 2013 he also stated they weren’t going to buy anytime soon but instead of listening to the primary source you are reading the media speculation and taking that as fact…
Ozair wrote:Sorry no. Here is some apparent marketing from 2008,...
Amazingly, what the JPO and LM promised is coming to fruition as they predicted and expected.
Ozair wrote:Based on your statement then I assume you have little knowledge of the system engineering process that is used to develop and intro into service military aviation? This is standard across the globe. The jet is almost complete on the SDD phase and will hand over now to the US services for their own internal testing. At this point the JPO transitions to undertaking Block 4 upgrade work which has received funding.
Of course if we looked at the F-15, F-16 and F-18 then we would actually realise that all those aircraft are still being tested, because their development hasn’t stopped even though they have been in service and in some cases out of production for years.
Ozair wrote:Those same figures are all available across the media reporting space, would you prefer I quote a news article that reported the LM figures instead of LM themselves. In that case your logic is flawed.
Ozair wrote:Others being who, a few media and acknowledged bias orgs such as POGO? The vast majority of informed commentary and industry officials acknowledges the lack of usefulness of the DOT&E.
Ozair wrote:The point is still valid. Do you expect the German Air Force to review every single line of code of every single piece of military equipment they acquire? I can tell you right now the answer is that they don’t.
Ozair wrote:How is that different to the Eurofighter or Tornado or Rafale or anything else? The German Air Force are still beholden to whatever vendor they acquire a platform from for those same software updates. The difference is that within the F-35 program they can share those costs across a 13+ nations, not have to fund them internally.
If you look at the Eurofighter, Germany has struggled to maintain a capable platform because it has not upgraded with the other allies, or cherry picked the upgrades they want to use. The end result in a capability that is deficient and difficult to sustain.
Ozair wrote:Really, what part of FCAS looks different to you from an F-35
Low observable – F-35 Check
Extended range – F-35 Check
C2 on unmanned affecters – F-35 Already planned.
Survivable – F-35 Check
ISR + data fusion and distribution – F-35 Check
We have gone through the options but this is again how I see it
1. Tornado retirement starts 2025 and Germany retains nuclear sharing – Germany requires a US platform to replace Tornado
2. Tornado retirement starts 2025 and Germany leaves nuclear sharing – Germany needs a new aircraft which could be anything but a Tranche 4 Eurofighter or F-35 makes sense from a cost/capability perspective
3. Tornado limps onwards to 2040, is refreshed and Germany retains nuclear sharing – Germany can continue with their Joint dev with France and spent a lot of money on essentially an internal jobs program and replace both Tornado and Eurofighter from 2040 with the next gen fighter. Problem is this leaves Germany in a difficult place from a capability perspective as it will have an aging strike platform and an underfunded Eurofighter program competing for funding with the next gen fighter.
4. Tornado limps onwards to 2040 is refreshed and Germany leaves nuclear sharing – Probably similar to four but if Germany leaves nuclear sharing they can again replace Tornado early.
vr773 wrote:The article I quoted states that Singapore delayed their purchase. Many other articles from credible sources do as well. Ng’s statement is what is expected of a politician who has to move in strict time of the diplomatic dance.
Here is another article supporting my point:
https://thediplomat.com/2016/08/enough- ... h-fighter/
vr773 wrote:I don’t think a presentation with very limited information is enough for you to debunk analyses of the majority of independent military journalists.
vr773 wrote:I find this article far more convincing and believe it proves my initial point: https://www.scientificamerican.com/arti ... e-fighter/
vr773 wrote:No doubt that tests always happen but we’re talking about full flight tests here and the fact that they are scheduled to happen this late after market entry is a bit of a bummer for those who bought it. I’m pretty sure for example that Norwegian air force officials are having some eye-opening moments right now as they had last week when they realized that they don’t have hangars for their new airplanes that had just arrived.
vr773 wrote:If you want to make a case, an independent analysis is better than using a quote from a manager who's job it is to be biased.
vr773 wrote:In a project of this size with this risk exposure, I expect them to have more control over it and change it if they want to, when they want to. That’s an important requirement for sovereignty. The problem with any F-35 purchase is the control the US government has over what you have access to and what not - beyond just the point of purchase.
There are obvious differences that have been mentioned on this thread before but I don’t think it’s worth speculating based on a powerpoint slide. Let’s just say that the likelihood is high that if it gets developed, the goal of the developer would be to offer capabilities that go beyond those of the F-35 – hence “6th generation”. It may even turn out to be a UAV.
vr773 wrote:There may be additional, more exotic options but I generally agree except for two points:
• I don’t think the FCAS would just be a jobs program (re: #3). I think there is the genuine motivation to develop new technology.
• I believe that the Tornado could do the nuclear sharing job until 2030 - costs could be controlled by reducing the fleet to just a few well-maintained Tornados, exclusively based in Büchel.
Ozair wrote:I don't see a need for two crewmen to monitor UCAV operations. If we consider that these UCAVs are going to be operating semi-autonomously anyway the systems on aircraft such as the F-35 already fuse vast amounts of data together and present a total picture to the pilot. Feedback from aircrew already is that they spend far less time operating sensors and systems and far more time tactically assessing the battlespace. A pilot should have plenty of time to order UCAV operations while also conducting other tasks.
Sorry, should have been more clear. Directed Energy Weapons. The USAF expects to trial a laser weapon in both podded form (for legacy aircraft) and inbuilt into the F-35, around the 2022 timeframe. Initial DEW will likely be self-defence but I expect that to change to offensive rapidly.
So it is not the 1960s/70s/80s or even 90s anymore. The technology and information available to a pilot to make that assessment is greater, and the procedures to make that determination are far better refined. For example, the F-35 has hundreds of parametric values it compares when detecting and determining the type of contact it is investigating. The fusion engine will, without pilot intervention, task sensors either on its jet or on another in the formation, to gain additional information on the respective contact. It shares this information across the other F-35s connected to it and all see therefore the same picture. This allows for rapid determination of the type of aircraft the flight is seeing making identification much easier than previous generations of aircraft. Again a significant benefit of a 5th generation platform.
As I have already said Germany and the US have a long and established security relationship both in and apart from NATO. There is plenty of confidence, and trust, from both sides. Plenty of other nations have established relationships with the US and have built and maintain the trust necessary to acquire and operate the F-35.
mxaxai wrote:I have no experience, obviously. I do expect workload to get quite high if the pilot cannot just focus on one task. Imagine the following:
The fighter close to the frontline, clearly within range of the enemy, is supporting ground troops below him. He is accompanied by three UCAV carrying ordnance. Suddenly, a SAM is launched as he got within the 30 km assured detection radius. More or less simultaneously, a squad of enemy bombers headed for the troops below him appears on the radar. They are accompanied by 5th gen fighters, so the escort is not yet visible on his screen. Only when he appears on theirs can he also get a missile lock on them. Meanwhile, the ground troops are under attack and have called for a strike on the enemy position.
The pilot would have to fly and navigate the aircraft, communicate with the supporting AWACS and his ground forces, evade and possible counter-attack incoming missiles and fighters and also attempt to prevent the enemy bombers reaching their target. Having one upfront who takes care of flying and defensive action and one behind who manages the communication, situation assessment and offensive weapons probably increases the survival and sucess rate significantly.
mxaxai wrote:I'm not sure. All DEW weapons I've seen so far were either short range or far too large and energy consuming to be a viable weapon on small aircraft. Maybe by 2050 or so but not in 5 years. Certainly nothing that can blow missiles and fighters out of the sky from 100+ km away.
The Self-Protect High-Energy Laser Demonstrator program is moving through preliminary design reviews for the laser weapon's subsystems and is on track to conduct a low-power system PDR in spring 2018, an Air Force spokesman said this week.
A beam-control subsystem PDR is finished, and Air Force spokesman Jim Fisher said Nov. 9 PDR for the power, cooling and aircraft pod infrastructure will take place in the next few months.
"The beam-control subsystem is close to a final design," Fisher said. "The pod structure, power, system control and thermal subsystems are quickly progressing to a preliminary design. The high-energy laser subsystem . . . design will proceed on a parallel schedule to the low-power system development and flight test. The SHiELD program is completing the interface specifications to ensure all subsystem interconnections are addressed and the subsystems work in concert prior to fabrication of the beam-control and pod subsystems."
SHiELD aims to add a laser weapon to an F-15 in the 2020s to shoot down ground-to-air and air-to-air missiles. Pod integration is slated for fiscal year 2018 with a high-power flight demonstration by FY-21. That effort may soon shift to focus on testing the laser pod on a KC-135 or a mobility platform in the next two years, based on the outcome of studies taking place at Air Mobility Command and the Air Force Research Laboratory.
Boeing is working with Lockheed Martin, which holds a contract worth up to $26.3 million to mature the laser beam, to advance the pod design and plans to complete a preliminary design review in December, Boeing spokeswoman Cheryl Sampson said in an Oct. 27 email. Boeing's Laser Pod Research and Development contract is worth up to $90 million.
Boeing will integrate its pod with Northrop Grumman's beam-control system in phase one of SHiELD and with Lockheed’s high-power laser in phase two. Beam-control development is funded by the $39 million SHiELD Turret Research in Aero Effects contract; the compact, high-power fiber laser falls under the Laser Advancements for Next-Generation Compact Environment award.
"In the development of laser weapon systems, the companies are exploring ways to work together to accelerate the transition from demonstration to fielded capability," Sampson said. "Once the design is completed for SHiELD phase one, Boeing will build the pod and integrate the beam-control system and a low-power laser for initial flight demonstration and testing. Successful flight testing will be followed by integration of the high-power LANCE laser into the pod for SHiELD phase two flight testing."
Contractors will piece together one flight-worthy system that can be used for research and testing but that falls short of the requirements needed to qualify as a system-level prototype. Engineers must design the "fairly large," externally mounted weapon to withstand G-forces, vibration and other aspects of flight, and ensure it can fire well while airborne, Fisher said. The pod connects the laser to its power source inside the aircraft and can be jettisoned in case of emergency.
Fisher said the podded system -- which can be installed onto a variety of platforms -- complicates the design process but would ultimately be more useful.
In a Nov. 7 press call, Rob Afzal, senior fellow of laser weapon systems at Lockheed, said the laser's power will be "tens of kilowatts" but declined to provide specifics. Lockheed's challenge is to shrink the laser's size and energy needs while retaining enough power to defend an aircraft.
"We're the last contract of the three and therefore we have to match the interfaces of the beam-control system and also on the pod infrastructure, just literally the locations, how you would actually load it into the pod, if there are any obstructions, and then very importantly, how best are we going to mate to the power and cooling system?" Afzal said.
He continued: "Because we understand the physics and engineering of these high-power fiber lasers and we control the design all the way from electric power input to laser photons output, we are able to customize the packaging of the fiber laser system so it can mate best to our partners on STRAFE and LPRD."
Expertise from earlier laser design, infrastructure and test efforts like the airborne laser and advanced tactical laser programs allow SHiELD to rapidly develop subsystems and quickly decide how each part should work together, Fisher said.
"The program is utilizing a rigorous systems engineering process including documenting trade studies, tests, modeling and analyses that inform decisions, to include a repository of lessons learned," Fisher added. "The SHiELD system is being built for demonstration purposes and will not be an operational system. However, the program still has to meet multiple subsystem- and system-level requirements that address reliability, maintainability and potential for reproducibility."
mxaxai wrote:The BUK operators had a fairly advanced system in their hands and still shot down a 777.
mxaxai wrote:The Aegis system aboard the Vincennes identified the A300 as an F-14. Systems may get more advanced but they are not perfect. The only way not to potentially kill hundreds of civilians is to perform a visual check, or at least get close enough to see unmistakeable signs.
mxaxai wrote:There is trust but it is not enough for either party to disclose their secrets to each other. Germany is subject to ITAR. Even civilian cooperations in space (between NASA and ESA) are difficult. Most research results are not open source, or at least open to allies. Obviously there is an economical reason for that, protection of intellectual property. Meanwhile, the relationship is quite unbalanced. The US export much more military goods to Germany than vice versa. When Airbus was on the verge of selling the A330MRTT (KC-45) they rather had Boeing develop a new KC-46. The only way for Germany - and the US - to gain experience and knowledge about advanced weapons is to participate in the development themselves.
mxaxai wrote:Another point I'd like to make:
Currently, the F-35 is the only internationally sold stealth jet. This will likely change over time. Eventually, even smaller militaries will be equipped with the technology.
mxaxai wrote:Let's assume a conflict F-35 vs F-35. Both jets will need to get quite close to each other to use their missiles (or cannons) but since they are equal the result is not related to the aircraft.
mxaxai wrote:Now assume a purpose built stealth fighter, like the F-22, as adversary. The F-22 will be more maneuverable and have more opportunities to launch missiles, with the F-35 likely loosing the encounter. You would want to escort the F-35 with a stealthy fighter, which is not under development yet.
mxaxai wrote:Maybe the japanese X-2 could work, or the new european jet. Maybe we could combine all three. Perhaps the new jet will replace the Tornado and the Eurofighter replacement will be US-made.
mxaxai wrote:At no time in history has NATO relied on a single fighter. They had their reasons and they have not changed with the arrival of the F-35.
Ozair wrote:Great, I still think you are reading too much into Singapore not yet ordering the jet and it has little to do with the overall progress of the program. Given the age of their fleet and the extra F-15SGs they have that they don’t acknowledge, it is clear they don’t need more fighter jets right now. The F-35 will be in production for another 25 years so they have plenty of time.
Ozair wrote:I quoted the presentation to show what the state of the program was in 2008, and what was promised. You claimed that the marketing was making big claims, the presentation clearly shows what was promised and what the jet is now delivering.
Ozair wrote:I have no problem discussing the issues with the F-35 program, I have been critical in the past of the delays that have resulted but the article you linked is so littered with false truths and bad facts it is not worthy of being printed. It is out on timeframes, costs, capability and intent.
Ozair wrote:I’m not sure why this is so hard to understand… The jet has undertaken full flight tests, the SDD program is almost closed. What occurs now is the respective militaries testing the jet to their requirements. Operational testing, not flight verification.
Ozair wrote:What does Norway not having hangers ready for their jets have to do with this?
Ozair wrote:As I have already said Germany and the US have a long and established security relationship both in and apart from NATO. There is plenty of confidence, and trust, from both sides. Plenty of other nations have established relationships with the US and have built and maintain the trust necessary to acquire and operate the F-35.
vr773 wrote:It's an important data point due to Singapore's reputation as a reference customer.
vr773 wrote:If it's true what you're saying, the explanation is that I am a victim of a media-driven conspiracy campaign that's trying to damage poor Lockheed Martin.
vr773 wrote:It's so difficult to understand because your assertions contradict so many points made in articles on legitimate publication platforms.
vr773 wrote:It's another example of my assumption that current European customers of the F-35 haven't done their homework. Most notably, I think they made their purchases too early.
vr773 wrote:On the tech-side, the article refers to a podcast debate between David Berke (former F-35B and F-22 pilot) and Pierre Sprey who helped conceptualize the design of the F-16 and A-10 fighters: http://aviationweek.com/combat-aircraft ... t-1?page=1
Ozair wrote:The program has plenty of reference customers already including Israel, the Japanese and the South Koreans. Israel is a security partner to the program, as with Singapore, and ordered the jet when they had the pick of US platforms to choose from. The South Koreans chose the F-35 over the Eurofighter and more F-15Es and the Japanese chose the F-35 over the Eurofighter. If we look at the RAAF which acquired the SH as interim lift and subsequently the Growler (the only customer of a US jamming aircraft in the world), they had every opportunity to acquire additional SH but chose to take the F-35.
Ozair wrote:Actually I don’t think LM has anything to do with it. I think most people are the victim on click bait. The writers of these articles aren’t interested in the facts, they are interested in generating hits to their website and the bombastic claims of most are focused on sensationalising the largest Pentagon weapons program in history for their economic gain.
Ozair wrote:Please point me to a single reputable source that claims that there is still flight envelope testing to be completed on the F-35 other than the remaining SDD program testing?
Ozair wrote:That is a logic fail. You are asserting that because Norway didn’t build hangers in time they purchased the jet too early? There is no link between those two items. Norway have known when they were receiving the F-35 for years, why is their inability, foresight, decision to not build hangers in any way related to the performance of the program?
Ozair wrote:vr773 wrote:On the tech-side, the article refers to a podcast debate between David Berke (former F-35B and F-22 pilot) and Pierre Sprey who helped conceptualize the design of the F-16 and A-10 fighters: http://aviationweek.com/combat-aircraft ... t-1?page=1
I listened to both parts a couple of months ago when it was released and frankly Pierre, who has a terrible track record of accuracy and honesty, sounded like a fool. Pierre made claim after claim that was unsubstantiated while Berke was clear, concise and accurate.
Since we are discussing data points, consider that not one F117 was lost in Iraq despite it doing most of the heavy lifting in the first few days of the invasion. This is not lost on those that may have to penetrate contested airspace in the future.
Wikipedia wrote:Initial claims of its effectiveness were later found to be overstated. For instance it was claimed that the F-117 made up 2.5% of Coalition tactical aircraft in Iraq and they attacked more than 40% of the strategic targets; ..........
vr773 wrote:Singapore is a really important one considering that Israel is receiving a special treatment that Germany likely wouldn't get; add to that the way the selection processes happened in Denmark (flawed comparisons, false pricing information used in favor of the F-35) and Norway (diplomatic pressure from the US in favor of the F-35); add to that the fact that South Korea and Japan are submissively loyal to US backed technology investments; and you get a much shorter list of reference customers. The only country I would consider a good reference for Germany that have bought the F-35 are the Netherlands.
vr773 wrote:Sensationalism and generating clicks are a problem but I don't believe they alone explain the widespread criticism of the capabilities of the F-35.
vr773 wrote:I never used those words. With regard to the F-35, as a foreign buyer nation I would want to see the SDD testing completed successfully (is that really just around the corner?) and the IOT&E well underway and returning with good news before making a decision to invest a lot of taxpayer money.
There are two important milestones associated with the closeout of this phase of the program: completion of SDD flight test and the delivery of the full Block 3F capability. It is important for the committee to understand that the end of SDD will be event driven. The JPO/Industry team will continue SDD until the full Block 3F capability is delivered to warfighter. There is no intention of truncating the program on any specific calendar date or at some predetermined budget-level. With respect to completion of F-35 flight test, the original 2011 re-baseline Program of Record showed flight testing to end on 31 October 2017. The JPO has always believed there is 3 to 4 months of risk to this completion date, putting the end of SDD flight test in February 2018. This risk adjusted date is the result of a number of flight test delays experienced in the past 2 years including the F-35 engine fire which stopped flight testing for 2 months and software stability issues and fusion issues with the Block 3i software which have delayed Block 3F flight testing.
The Department of Defense (DoD) has directed the JPO to maintain the resources necessary to continue flight testing to May 2018, if necessary, to ensure we will deliver the full Block 3F capability. The biggest risks to the timely completion of SDD flight testing include software stability, the discovery of new software deficiencies, the time it takes to correct deficiencies, and the health of our DT test fleet.
vr773 wrote:How do you know that there is no link? You like to speculate on the one side but are not open to any form of speculation on the other.
vr773 wrote:The fact that Norway's F-35 are under tents right now supports the assumption that Norway didn't quite know what they're getting into. I might be wrong and I hope for them that there isn't more to it and it's just poor timing or poor internal communication in an isolated incident. Time will tell.
vr773 wrote:I'm not emotionally invested enough to use words like "fool" to describe someone in a debate such as this one but I thought that David Berke was the one with the less convincing arguments. He lost me when he contradicted himself: (loosely quoted) "our children will fly a much better F-35 than we are today" but also stating that "nobody knows how the future will look like".
vr773 wrote:I also always find it difficult when people are overly patriotic: (loosely quoted) "you see hard-working, proud Americans working at Lockheed Martin"; because it tends to serve as a substitute for logic.
Planeflyer wrote:There are lot of countries that owe their freedom to hardworking and patriotic Americans.
In the USA patriotism means freedom
A large part of this conversation has an under stream of resentment that the F35 would be a great solution if only it were European.
keesje wrote:If we put the Tornado replacement requirements (payload -range, two engine, two crew, UAV coordination, long term control ) aside, the F-35 is an excellent replacement. It's available, stealth etc.. It's not proven but I heard, in this case, that's irrelevant.
keesje wrote:Maybe e.g. Australians & Canadians can join in too.
seahawk wrote:Those requirements sound like the FCAS not the Tornado replacement.
seahawk wrote:Because the Luftwaffe wants to retire the Tornado by 2025 not 2040.
FCAS will replace the Luftwaffe’s aging fleet of Panavia Tornado fighter bombers and complement the Luftwaffe’s Eurofighter Typhoon air superiority fighters.
keesje wrote:"The German government asked Airbus to consider alternatives for a Tornado replacement that will be complementary with the Eurofighter. In principle, it could be a system of systems - either a manned and unmanned combination. [We have determined that unmanned combat air vehicles] UCAVs will not be at technology state ready by 2030-40 to support Eurofighters. It could be optionally manned, with two crew - one for command and control [and one pilot]," he said.
The mission as flown by the Tornado proves valuable in the current international environment. Unforeseen when developed in the seventies, range, a variety of loads, the extra man and interoperability only became more important.seahawk wrote:Those requirements sound like the FCAS not the Tornado replacement.
Are you trying to split the Tornado replacement & FCAS requirements ? Why ?
keesje wrote:I might be shot for stating so, but it seems the good old Tornado concept is more useful than the super agile Typhoon as we speak. Look at current and recent conflict where the operating countries are / were involved. Which aircraft fits in best, Typhoon or Tornado? Tornado operators keep considering extended operations / expensive upgrades for them. Same for e.g. similar F15E's and USN / Australians / Canadians considering more "Old" F18G's..Replacing all with the must buy F-35s ! .. Yeah.. w'll have look again.
keesje wrote:I've only seen a liberal interpretation and remarkably dressed up report on a speech of a single German general. Was it AviationWeek? Sales campaigns have certainly started! The requirements and German-French are quickly sidelined, FCAS redefined and dismissed as suitable, AE-18G introduced as strawman!
keesje wrote:And yes, programs are considered to upgrade the Tornado fleet.
http://aviationweek.com/defense/industr ... until-2040
keesje wrote:Airbus / Dassault might add short term Rafale-G's in the FCAS MIX, Eurofighter upgrades, buy back frames for spares etc. But LM / Boeing could come up with a similar solution, including F15 Silent Eagle's, a F35-G version, the Germans needs heavy helicopters too.
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