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seahawk
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Wed Nov 15, 2017 7:39 am

Even a 4th gen would be better than the Tornado.
 
mxaxai
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Wed Nov 15, 2017 11:39 am

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.


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.

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.


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.

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.

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.


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.

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.
 
Ozair
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Wed Nov 15, 2017 12:46 pm

mxaxai wrote:

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.

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.

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.

Understand that but at some point Europe may fall behind as it cannot invest enough funds to maintain parity.

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.

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.

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.

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.
 
tjh8402
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Wed Nov 15, 2017 3:20 pm

mxaxai wrote:

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.
 
Ozair
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Wed Nov 15, 2017 8:24 pm

tjh8402 wrote:

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.

It is probably worth injecting this document into the discussion on close air support, http://docs.wixstatic.com/ugd/a2dd91_5da6ef63b45a4a8097aa35c0063ebccd.pdf

An abstract from the start of the document,
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.
 
mxaxai
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Wed Nov 15, 2017 9:39 pm

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.

Ok, I didn't know they wanted to operate them quite that long. It always seemed to finish sometime around 2050.

Understand that but at some point Europe may fall behind as it cannot invest enough funds to maintain parity.

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.
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.

The F-16 outsold the F-15 and F-18 combined. And I forgot about Japan. Still, the Eurofighter operates in more countries than the F-15.
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.

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
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Thu Nov 16, 2017 12:07 am

mxaxai wrote:

Ok, I didn't know they wanted to operate them quite that long. It always seemed to finish sometime around 2050.

Production was recently extended out to 2043 to allow for a reduction in the production rate for USAF but the life of type is approx. 2073. Hence why you see the insane numbers (trillion dollar) for sustainment given not only the life of type but also the assumptions made on fuel cost and currency inflation over that period.

mxaxai wrote:

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.

That is obviously a big if.

mxaxai wrote:

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.

Clearly though the sweet spot for export was that single engine F-16 sized aircraft coupled with a high production rate. Twins have had some success but let us be frank, certainly with the Rafale the export sales have been a disaster and are less than a quarter of what was originally expected. The F-15 still receives scattered orders because few airframes match its payload/range. The Eurofighter has struggled on the export market. While the classic Hornet was an export success all the SH has is Australia and possibly now Kuwait, a big failure for exports and not even a tenth of USN orders.

mxaxai wrote:

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.

The problem with that statement is that all indications now point to the new European Fighter being a replacement for the Eurofighter and Rafale. That is certainly what Germany and to a lesser extent France are saying. What does that actually mean though?

A bigger heavier longer ranged twin engine airframe will come with increased sustainment costs. Industry experience shows us that and there is little evidence to say that will change. The majority of Eurofighters and Rafales are single seat so a dedicated twin crew jet will also increase sustainment costs for aircrew. Aircrew sustainment is not a trivial issue, it takes years and costs millions to train fast jet aircrew and having to double that is costly. What does France do about a naval variant? One of the key issues for pre Eurofighter/Rafale discussions was a naval variant and the size of the aircraft. Therefore does the new European aircraft have to have a CATOBAR variant or will France settle for an updated naval Rafale for the next 60 years?

Finally, as you alluded to earlier, single seat jets have had greater export success and France recognised this even in the 1980s when designing the Rafale. While they kept two engines they attempted to reduce the size and weight as much as possible to make it cheaper to acquire and operate.

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.
 
salttee
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Thu Nov 16, 2017 1:31 am

IMO what is actually needed is a stealth arsenal plane.
 
mxaxai
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Thu Nov 16, 2017 10:29 am

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.

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.
The Eurofighter, and also the F-35, have shown that it is difficult to create an airframe that is excellent at everything. The EF ended up being very focused on the air superiority and interception role, while the F-35 shines on ground attack and CAS missions. This is one reason why Germany still operates the Tornado and apparently sees not future replacement for them on Eurofighter basis. It is therefore, in my mind, foolish to again attempt to create an airframe that must be a jack of all trades. Obviously, modern multi-role fighters can still do a little bit of everything but when it comes to mission efficiency and returning home after a successful mission one is better than other, depending on the situation.

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.
Therefore, I would prefer this new fighter to be a step above the Eurofighter and the F-35. Similar to the Tornado, it should have a pilot in front and a weapon officer in the back, forming a mobile C2 center. All slides seen so far indicate a joint operation of the current fighters and this new jet, focusing on different roles. You could have the new fighter suppressing ground targets and SAM batteries while an agile and fast single seater keeps the enemy air force away. 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.

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.

My opinion may not precisely match the official statements and particularly this post is more about what I consider reasonable than what has been announced. I hope we can agree on some points.
 
Ozair
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Thu Nov 16, 2017 10:45 pm

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.


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?
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.

Well the plan is to replace Eurofighter and Rafale in 2040 with the new European fighter.
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.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-fran ... SKBN19Y1FJ


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.

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.

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.

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.
 
rheinwaldner
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Fri Nov 17, 2017 9:27 am

The Tornado was not fit for the job to penetrate the airspace of an adversary in Europe since the nineties. In the first Gulf war against a mediocre defence, Tornado operations had to quickly deviate from the originally intended low-altitude attack flight profile.

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. The best is, to built the same dense air defence system over your own territory, that prevents any of your fighter bombers to intrude in the other guys airspace. For that the Eurofighter or other 4gen fighters are good enough.
 
mxaxai
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Fri Nov 17, 2017 4:12 pm

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.

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.

BTW: What do you mean with DEW? D... early warning? 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).
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.

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?
 
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seahawk
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Fri Nov 17, 2017 5:30 pm

That is the plan for the FCAS - to replace Tififes and Rafales.
 
Ozair
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Fri Nov 17, 2017 9:55 pm

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.

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.

mxaxai wrote:
BTW: What do you mean with DEW? D... early warning?

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.

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).

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.

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?

Indeed the USN will keep the SH to potentially 2040, depending upon hours in the fleet. I have a feeling that come 2030 though they will continue F-35C orders past the planned totals and retire some SH earlier than planned. The benefits of the F-35C over the SH are such that is makes sense but the USN will be challenged for funding for some time and the past shows us that ships traditionally have a higher priority for acquisition than aircraft

As for the French, I see no way the French can afford to develop a separate carrier aircraft and a replacement for the Rafale which is why initial estimates of what the next European Fighter looks like appear to me incorrect. Again, the same thing happened last time and now that this concept is about replacing Rafales and Eurofighters I'd expect some heated discussions again on requirements and the high possibility that France again develops alone. Alternatively, the French may just manufacture additional Rafale Ms before they close the production line and hope something else, or a UCAV, comes along later to replace it.

Remember as well that there are clear upgrade paths identified for Rafale/Eurofighter yet starting a new program will likely see these upgrade plans scrapped or severely curtailed. This will in turn reduce the ability of both platforms to compete for exports and maintain capability in a world increasingly populated with 5th gen aircraft.
 
Ozair
Posts: 1809
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2005 8:38 am

Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Fri Nov 17, 2017 10:03 pm

rheinwaldner wrote:

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.

I disagree. We know that the radar on the S-400 Gravestone TER, and on the active seeker heads in the missiles themselves, are X-band. This is the frequency range where the stealth properties of the F-35 are most effective. To see how much of an impact this makes, the study I posted a couple of pages ago points out how a worst case analysis of the F-35 RCS still sees a reduction of more than 90% for detection against the Tombstone (the S-300 radar) and the F-16 Blk 52 radar. That reduction puts S-300/400 engagement radars well within the range of F-35 weapons such as JDAM and SDB.
 
vr773
Posts: 39
Joined: Sun Oct 15, 2017 5:10 am

Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Sat Nov 18, 2017 9:03 am

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.

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/

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…

In 2013 “not anytime soon” could mean 2022 – a purchase at this time is what Singapore had initially intended. It’s also possible that the status of the F-35 program five years ago may have given him reason to make that statement back then. After all, the program development wasn’t on time or on budget in 2013 either – at least enough for one of the initial SCPs to soften communications with regard to their purchase intentions.

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.

I don’t think a presentation with very limited information is enough for you to debunk analyses of the majority of independent military journalists.
I find this article far more convincing and believe it proves my initial point: https://www.scientificamerican.com/arti ... e-fighter/

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

Five US presidents and several US congresses thought it's a good thing to have but I will check my biases. You should check yours too. So far I haven’t gotten the impression that 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.

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.

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.

It’s unclear which missed upgrades you’re referring to but the German government has significantly more control over the development of the Eurofighter than they would have over the F-35. The bottom line is that the Eurofighter is now at a stage of development where it’s working well for what Germany really needs it for (quick reaction alert/ air policing). You could make a case that it’s the most capable close-range air superiority fighter in the world.

But I agree with you that, given its bumpy development road in the 90s, it may have been better to invest the money differently (though not necessarily in another LM product). The project then got too big to fail – just like the F-35. The good thing from a German taxpayer perspective is that Germany is not part of the latter yet.

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

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.

Ozair wrote:

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.

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
Posts: 1809
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2005 8:38 am

Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Sat Nov 18, 2017 11:36 am

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/

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.

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.

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.

vr773 wrote:
I find this article far more convincing and believe it proves my initial point: https://www.scientificamerican.com/arti ... e-fighter/

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.

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.

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.

What does Norway not having hangers ready for their jets have to do with this?

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.

Facts, I am interested in facts. We have assessment which we can review for factual accuracy but was you see on the page I linked are simply facts about the program. So much so that those same facts were re-reported across the defence media sector.

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.

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:

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.

I don’t share your confidence. The US spent significant sums of money developing the technology inside the F-35, technology that will roll right into the B-21 and refined further likely the US 6th gen fighter, including the stealth coatings and the fusion engine.

For any new Euro jet before we see even a list of requirements we need to see an actual agreement and workshare. There is a lot of water to pass under the bridge before that and frankly history is not on their side.

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.

The plan for Tornado replacement is IOC of the successor in 2025 with the last Tornado leaving the fleet in 2030. Plenty of time to build up a capability before retiring the legacy platform.
 
mxaxai
Posts: 221
Joined: Sat Jun 18, 2016 7:29 am

Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Sat Nov 18, 2017 6:29 pm

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.

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.
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.

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.
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.

The BUK operators had a fairly advanced system in their hands and still shot down a 777. 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.

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.

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.

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. 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. 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. 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.

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.
 
Planeflyer
Posts: 720
Joined: Fri Mar 14, 2014 3:49 am

Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Sat Nov 18, 2017 7:23 pm

There is now enough data from Red Flag type exercises to properly inform air forces. F35 adoption will take off in the next few years.

The only option for Germany is the F35 or for Europe to develop a homegrown 5th or 6 th gen AC. 20-30 years and a 10-20 billion should will be required.
 
Ozair
Posts: 1809
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2005 8:38 am

Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Sat Nov 18, 2017 9:52 pm

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.

Your situation also doesn’t make sense. In your situation there is one F-35 against a mountain of adversaries and he alone has to make the decision? You talk of a squad of bombers that have 5th gen fighter escort but the F-35 can’t see the escort, therefore how does he know they are there? How has the SAM been fired without any guidance? You haven’t defined what the UCAVs can do? You haven’t defined if there is a JTAC on the ground who can control the UAVs themselves, or the AWACS controlling them? How is the F-35 configured, for A2G missions or for A2G missions? Why would the ground adversary attack when there are bombers inbound, they would be engaged by their own forces due to proximity?

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.

Well if you are not sure I would suggest doing some research and finding out before you make comments that don’t match with reality. A recent article,
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."


https://insidedefense.com/daily-news/la ... t-head-pdr
The intent is defensive for starters but will move towards a more offensive role as the power increases. No one is talking 100km+ range and no one has mentioned it. The power currently is the tens of kilowatts, plenty good enough for self-defence. As we move above 150 kW with the ideal above 250 kW the laser system will become effective at a decent range for both A2A and A2G.

mxaxai wrote:
The BUK operators had a fairly advanced system in their hands and still shot down a 777.

Really? What system was it? What battlefield communications network was it associated with?

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.

Sorry no that is simply an unjustifiable claim. We have moved far beyond visual identification being required. The sensors, systems and data-link networks so much better now and will continue to improve.

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.

Again, the US and Germany have a long and established security relationship. The respective militaries share classified information. When a nation signs up to an FMS acquisition with the US they receive the technical documentation required to operate, maintain and tactically employ the respective system.

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.

So what other jet will be available on the export market in the next 25 years that will have equivalent capability to the F-35?

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.

Why are we considering this?

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.

How is the F-22 a purpose built stealth fighter and the F-35 isn’t? The USAF have stated that the RCS of the F-35 is lower than the F-22 and the F-35 radar has already demonstrated the ability to detect and jam the F-22 radar.
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.

Read the other threat, the Japanese X-2 is now in limbo and I expect the Japanese to go all in on the F-35 over the next 5 years. We’ve already gone over that the new European jet intent is to replace the Eurofighter and Rafale, not the Tornado.
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.

What reasons? Plenty of nations now operate a single fighter jet fleet and even the USAF goal is to move to a two type fighter fleet, with the F-35 ten times more numerous than the F-22. While I don’t see any moves towards a single NATO fighter aircraft there would be significant operational and efficiency benefits from doing so.
 
vr773
Posts: 39
Joined: Sun Oct 15, 2017 5:10 am

Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Sun Nov 19, 2017 9:20 am

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.

It's an important data point due to Singapore's reputation as a reference customer.

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.

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.

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.

It's so difficult to understand because your assertions contradict so many points made in articles on legitimate publication platforms.

Ozair wrote:
What does Norway not having hangers ready for their jets have to do with this?

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.

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.

On a political level, I think the relationship has taken a lot of damage in the past years and this development has gotten worse since Trump took office. They still talk to each other but "trust" is certainly not a word that I would use to describe the current relationship between Germany and the US.
 
vr773
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Sun Nov 19, 2017 9:26 am

Der Spiegel had an article on the topic today. Unfortunately it's only available in German but the gist is that the Bundeswehr will likely purchase the F-35 to replace the Tornados which they have been planning to do for years. The author says that this is a risky move given that the F-35 has fundamental construction flaws. He also says that the purchase will jeopardize French-German military cooperation and, as a result, will damage the political relationship between the two countries.

http://www.spiegel.de/politik/ausland/t ... 78621.html

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
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Sun Nov 19, 2017 10:36 am

vr773 wrote:
It's an important data point due to Singapore's reputation as a reference customer.

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.

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.

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.

vr773 wrote:
It's so difficult to understand because your assertions contradict so many points made in articles on legitimate publication platforms.

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?

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.

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
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Sun Nov 19, 2017 11:04 am

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.
 
vr773
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Sun Nov 19, 2017 2:42 pm

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.

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.

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.

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.

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?

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.

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?

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. 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
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Sun Nov 19, 2017 2:52 pm

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.


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". 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
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Sun Nov 19, 2017 3:06 pm

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gulf_War_air_campaign

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.
 
WIederling
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Sun Nov 19, 2017 5:30 pm

Planeflyer wrote:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gulf_War_air_campaign

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.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lockheed_ ... al_history third paragraph in subtopic.
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; ..........


Tall claims have a tendency to deflate under closer scrutiny.
Murphy is an optimist
 
Planeflyer
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Sun Nov 19, 2017 5:33 pm

W, how many F117’s were lost?

How many non stealth AC performed deep strikes on days 1-3.

Try as you might, facts eventually shine through.
 
Ozair
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Sun Nov 19, 2017 9:25 pm

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.


There were no flawed comparisons in the Denmark competition and as I showed in the Norway delivery thread Norway was adamant they would choose the best technical platform in 2008.
Your point of a reference customer remains flawed. If we talk reference customers for the Eurocanards we come up with a big fat zero, does that mean their respective programs and jets are failures?

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.


Some of the criticism was warranted, the program made several bad decisions in the middle 2000s that created multipe year delays, but I believe click bait played and continues to play the greatest role.

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.

So although I had mentioned SDD phase flight testing four times you have decided to only now comprehend that concept? As for your words, you stated the following,

#335 “full safety testing hasn’t even started yet”

to which I replied in #338 “The System Development and demonstration program is almost finished which includes all safety testing required.”

In post #346 You claimed further issues by citing a link which specifically stated OT&E may commence late

To which I replied in #348 with a clear clarification on what OT&E is and why that is not SDD.

You then continued on about flight testing not complete in #365, essentially ignoring the multiple statements I had made that SDD is almost finished.

Of course you then tried again in post #416 again talking about flight testing happening so late that is should be considered a bummer for those who bought it. That was always the plan, has always been the plan. The jet has had a very clear IOC, SDD and software release schedule available for years… Again what you show is a lack of program information against reading click bait articles that don’t actually provide factual information.

As for the words you actually used, you are right you never stated flight envelope testing, you claimed flight safety testing which is frankly pretty much the same thing but I will give you the benefit of the doubt.

As for the SDD phase finishing soon, Bogdan said the following to the House Armed Services Committee in Feb this year.

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.


http://docs.house.gov/meetings/AS/AS25/ ... 170216.pdf

So let us be clear, the SDD phase, when the program was re-baselined in 2011, showed a finish to SDD in Oct 2017 and is now looking at Feb 2018, still within the threshold for program completion, with the reasons for the delay identified above. This information has been public knowledge for the last nearly 7 years. I would suggest you take the time to read the whole committee testimony above, it will provide actual information on the program instead of bit pieces selected to generate website hits.

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.


I’m happy to speculate when required or the absence of information warrants it. This is not one of those times, the facts are very clear.

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.


We don’t need time to tell. This article from 2012 https://uk.reuters.com/article/lockheed ... GB20120323
demonstrates clearly that Norway knew when they were ordering jets and when they were going to receive them.
 
Ozair
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Sun Nov 19, 2017 10:10 pm

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".

I’d take that over the continual factual errors and false claims Pierre makes.
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.

It is an American style of conversation for a podcast that has a majority American audience.
 
Planeflyer
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Mon Nov 20, 2017 12:38 am

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.
 
WIederling
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Mon Nov 20, 2017 8:39 am

Planeflyer wrote:
There are lot of countries that owe their freedom to hardworking and patriotic Americans.

Oh, yeah. old story. Ask some Russians who really turned things on the nazis
In the USA patriotism means freedom

This is rather 1984ish. you've lost the meaning of freedom.
patriotism replaces knowledge and understanding. Not a good thing.

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.


More like F35 is by design an aggressors tool and thus less suitable for Europe and a vast jobs program for those patriots.
Murphy is an optimist
 
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keesje
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Mon Nov 20, 2017 9:13 am

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.

It seems there is a serious battle going on for hundreds of aircraft, their service life development and maintenance for the next 25 years. So everybody is very much on top of it.

While the increasingly self confident Germans will pay most of the bills, many actors are involved. Dassault, the French government, Eurofighter participants, Airbus Military, Lockheed Martin, Governments US and UK, German political parties/regions, many more (RR, BAE, Safran etc) .

This will be a purely technical thing, short availability is all and requirements & politics are out. maybe

Image

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-france-germany-defence/france-and-germany-to-develop-new-european-fighter-jet-idUSKBN19Y1FJ

Maybe e.g. Australians & Canadians can join in too.
"Never mistake motion for action." Ernest Hemingway
 
Ozair
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Mon Nov 20, 2017 10:43 am

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, can you show me where Germany defined those replacement requirements?

keesje wrote:
Maybe e.g. Australians & Canadians can join in too.

Doubtful, Australia will be an all F-35 force by 2030 and will expect to keep it in service till at least 2055 and probably further. Any new European jet is going to be produced in low numbers and be cost prohibitive for a nation like Australia to afford. Plus after the upcoming debacle that will be the Short Fin Barracuda submarine program Australia will likely swear off large European military projects for good.

The Canadians also have no money and frankly can’t make a decision on how to make a decision so I wouldn’t hold out much hope there.
 
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seahawk
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Mon Nov 20, 2017 11:23 am

Those requirements sound like the FCAS not the Tornado replacement.
 
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keesje
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Mon Nov 20, 2017 11:37 am

"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.

https://defence.pk/pdf/threads/airbus-ds-defining-fcas-aircraft-requirements-with-bundeswehr.436212/

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.

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.
https://www.ainonline.com/aviation-news/defense/2017-06-07/through-upgrades-boeing-envisions-longer-utility-f-15.

The Israelis want something bigger / two crew too. For them its a bit more than politics & commercial interests.
https://tacairnet.com/2017/03/09/israel-wants-to-buy-boeings-most-advanced-version-of-the-f-15-eagle/


seahawk wrote:
Those requirements sound like the FCAS not the Tornado replacement.


Are you trying to split the Tornado replacement & FCAS requirements ? Why ?
https://www.aerosociety.com/news/airbus-reveals-tornado-successor-concept-for-2040s/
"Never mistake motion for action." Ernest Hemingway
 
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seahawk
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Mon Nov 20, 2017 12:02 pm

Because the Luftwaffe wants to retire the Tornado by 2025 not 2040.
 
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keesje
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Mon Nov 20, 2017 2:39 pm

seahawk wrote:
Because the Luftwaffe wants to retire the Tornado by 2025 not 2040.


FCAS has total overlap with the Tornado replacement & proposals coming in are filling that requirement.

F-35 is a great small fighter bomber & doesn't fill the FCAS this requirement. The requirements won't be adjusted to match the F-35.

FCAS will replace the Luftwaffe’s aging fleet of Panavia Tornado fighter bombers and complement the Luftwaffe’s Eurofighter Typhoon air superiority fighters.


http://defence-blog.com/news/germany-looks-to-develop-its-own-sixth-generation-stealth-fighter-jet.html
"Never mistake motion for action." Ernest Hemingway
 
Ozair
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Mon Nov 20, 2017 9:24 pm

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.

https://defence.pk/pdf/threads/airbus-ds-defining-fcas-aircraft-requirements-with-bundeswehr.436212/

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 ?
https://www.aerosociety.com/news/airbus-reveals-tornado-successor-concept-for-2040s/


Keesje, FCAS has moved on from what you are indicating.

Statements from the Germany Military are very clear that the Tornado replacement will be via a current in service aircraft that will be acquired by 2025 for a full replacement of Tornado by 2030. There is no UAV in Europe or elsewhere that can fulfil the role of the Tornado and there is no current plan from anyone to build one in the time between now and necessary Tornado replacement.

The new European fighter jet that Germany and France are considering has been slated to replace the Eurofighter and Rafale, not the Tornado.

As for what replaces the Tornado, yes the F-35 is a good candidate, from a capability, cost and interoperability perspective probably the best, but other candidates remain viable including a Tranche 4 Eurofighter.

What FCAS becomes is now open for debate. If we consider the FCAS view of manned and unmanned platforms then the cost to develop both platforms concurrently is probably out of reach. The issue still remains that in replacing the Eurofighter and Rafale the current requirements of Germany and France differ significantly and it appears that none of that has been discussed yet. Given we have seen cost overruns, schedule delays and requirement confliction on essentially every single joint European military aviation project I fail to see how FCAS/new European fighter/unspecified UCAV/C2 improvements will be different.

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.

Not shot, you just don’t understand what is being acquired and the roles they play.

For example, no one is now considering Tornado upgrades, the UK will withdraw theirs next year, the Italians shortly afterwards and the Saudis almost certainly by 2025 and that will just leave Germany.
Additionally EA-18Gs are not strike aircraft, they are Electronic Warfare jammers and as such provide a capability not present in most military inventories. If you look at the role these platforms played over the last 15 years you will better understand why they are being acquired. An example of this, the USAF has not fielded a dedicated jamming aircraft since 1996 and will not do so in the future while the USMC has also retired all dedicated jamming aircraft and will operate the next generation jammer on the F-35B.
 
Planeflyer
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Mon Nov 20, 2017 11:12 pm

W, I doubt if Poland, the Czech Republic, South Korea, Japan or even Germany would agree w your views.

Yes the Russians did most of the heavy lifting to defeat the Nazis by then showed their true colors. The USA equals freedom and the Soviets just the opposite and everyone but you understands this.

Oh yea, and sometimes you have to fight for it.
 
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keesje
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Mon Nov 20, 2017 11:39 pm

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!

And yes, programs are considered to upgrade the Tornado fleet.
http://aviationweek.com/defense/industr ... until-2040
"Never mistake motion for action." Ernest Hemingway
 
Ozair
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Mon Nov 20, 2017 11:55 pm

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!

I’m not sure of what you’re trying to say here. As for the German General, he is the Commander of the German Air Force.

keesje wrote:
And yes, programs are considered to upgrade the Tornado fleet.
http://aviationweek.com/defense/industr ... until-2040

Which is great, except it is now old news and is not contextuallyvalid given the discussion, and issue of replacement, has moved onwards.
 
Planeflyer
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Tue Nov 21, 2017 4:06 am

Keejie, How many Tornados, even with an upgrade would survive long enough to acquire their targets let alone put a weaapn on one?
 
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seahawk
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Tue Nov 21, 2017 6:15 am

The point is that the Luftwaffe wants to replace the Tornado starting 2025, as studies show that the maintenance costs would skyrocket once you are the only user of the type. In addition by 2040 the numbers of new frames needed in a very short period would be prohibitive, as Tornados and Tranche 1 Eurofighters would need replacement.
 
Planeflyer
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Tue Nov 21, 2017 2:41 pm

Seahawk, over and over objective reality is ignored by posters against the F35.
 
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keesje
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Tue Nov 21, 2017 4:13 pm

I think many people will paint black & white as it suits pictures, spread a little FUD, halftruths, simplifications etc.to reach their goals. Equally, interested parties can score by offering solutions making life easier for the 2020-20240 period.

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.

Politics will play a big role and an Obama like person (reliable, nice) is no longer there to help out LM.

Image
"Never mistake motion for action." Ernest Hemingway
 
Ozair
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Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Tue Nov 21, 2017 8:16 pm

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.

Keesje, already stated but because you don’t seem to get it, there is no Rafale future with Germany. There is nothing the Rafale offers Germany that they cannot get out of the Eurofighter.

If Germany went for a US aircraft it will be a vanilla copy of the F-35, almost certainly the A model, or if an F-15 then likely the F-15SA. There is no Silent Eagle variant, it does not exist and the only way it will exist is if a nation funded the development. One thing we could all agree on is that Germany is certainly not going to do that…
 
Planeflyer
Posts: 720
Joined: Fri Mar 14, 2014 3:49 am

Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Tue Nov 21, 2017 8:22 pm

Thank goodness USAF does not have its head in the sand:

https://www.flightglobal.com/news/artic ... sp-443495/

Keeje, your picture perfectly captures Europe's, soft power, cant we all get along mindset. The problem is that this mind set means nothing if someone doesnt have some back bone. Yes Obama was also a soft power, kind, genuflecting kind of guy who the Russians, Chinese, North Koreans and ISIS feared not one bit.
 
mffoda
Posts: 1069
Joined: Thu Apr 15, 2010 4:09 pm

Re: Germany Considers Tornado Replacement

Wed Nov 22, 2017 5:00 am

So, after several hundred replies on this thread... We end up with pictures of Emmanuel Macron and (the "late")Angela Merkel promising a euro f-35?

Seems like a wonderful use of tax payers money...

Loving this! :spin:
harder than woodpecker lips...

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