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mxaxai
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Wed Jun 30, 2021 7:58 pm

"Won't [Swiss] dependence on the USA increase if two systems from this country - the F-35A fighter aircraft and the Patriot ground-based air defense system - are opted for at the same time?"

"These dependencies have been discussed. But it is not a stronger dependency than for other aircraft. This is because all suppliers include American components," answers Defense Minister Viola Amherd. The dependency on the USA is therefore not increasing.

I'm surprised that there's enough US content in the Rafale to make it equally dependent on US technology as the F-35.

I'll also note that they're planning with 50% fewer training flights (albeit with slightly longer duration than currently) and an associated 25% reduction in fuel burn.

The second-best offer was 2 billion CHF more expensive when including acquisition and 30 years of operations, or approximately 14% more.
 
Noshow
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Wed Jun 30, 2021 8:12 pm

And she said they have contractually binding guarantees for all their costs. They expect less training needs as the new fighter is easier to fly and needs less sensor adjusting while being networked to a higher degree. A clear vote at least.
 
mileduets
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Re: Switzerland Restarting Fighter Competition

Wed Jun 30, 2021 8:30 pm

art wrote:
flyingturtle wrote:
Now, It's up to the parliament to decide...


I thought the Swiss parliament had approved a budget and it was up to the evaluators to select one of the four deals offered.

Is the CPFH likely to go against the F-35 if a referendum takes place? If a referendum does reject the selection, can another aircraft be selected?


The parliament will have their say, just like every year when the annual "Rüstungsprogramm" = armament program is approved. But that will be more of a formality. The bigger hurdle is the popular initiative the left parties SP and Greens plus the GSoA have announced in case an American product is selected; which is now the case. This could further delay or even prevent the deal.

I don't think this has been posted yet: Here's the official text by the Swiss government on the procurment decision in English:
https://www.admin.ch/gov/en/start/documentation/media-releases.msg-id-84275.html
 
art
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Re: Switzerland Restarting Fighter Competition

Wed Jun 30, 2021 9:00 pm

mileduets wrote:
art wrote:
flyingturtle wrote:
Now, It's up to the parliament to decide...


I thought the Swiss parliament had approved a budget and it was up to the evaluators to select one of the four deals offered.

Is the CPFH likely to go against the F-35 if a referendum takes place? If a referendum does reject the selection, can another aircraft be selected?


The parliament will have their say, just like every year when the annual "Rüstungsprogramm" = armament program is approved. But that will be more of a formality. The bigger hurdle is the popular initiative the left parties SP and Greens plus the GSoA have announced in case an American product is selected; which is now the case. This could further delay or even prevent the deal.

I don't think this has been posted yet: Here's the official text by the Swiss government on the procurment decision in English:
https://www.admin.ch/gov/en/start/documentation/media-releases.msg-id-84275.html


I am very surprised that the procurement and running costs are seen as lower than F/A-18. I have never heard of F-35 being cheaper in either respect.
 
ThePointblank
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Re: Switzerland Restarting Fighter Competition

Wed Jun 30, 2021 9:06 pm

art wrote:
mileduets wrote:
art wrote:

I thought the Swiss parliament had approved a budget and it was up to the evaluators to select one of the four deals offered.

Is the CPFH likely to go against the F-35 if a referendum takes place? If a referendum does reject the selection, can another aircraft be selected?


The parliament will have their say, just like every year when the annual "Rüstungsprogramm" = armament program is approved. But that will be more of a formality. The bigger hurdle is the popular initiative the left parties SP and Greens plus the GSoA have announced in case an American product is selected; which is now the case. This could further delay or even prevent the deal.

I don't think this has been posted yet: Here's the official text by the Swiss government on the procurment decision in English:
https://www.admin.ch/gov/en/start/documentation/media-releases.msg-id-84275.html


I am very surprised that the procurement and running costs are seen as lower than F/A-18. I have never heard of F-35 being cheaper in either respect.

The Swiss would be able to tie into the massive support network available for the F-35, and leverage economies of scale to drive down costs. Coupled to the high fidelity simulators, I would expect the Swiss to spend less time flying to maintain proficiency, but more time on tactics.

And even then, the simulators for the F-35 are capable of being networked for multiple pilots to work on tactics against realistic foes.
 
art
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Re: Switzerland Restarting Fighter Competition

Wed Jun 30, 2021 9:25 pm

ThePointblank wrote:
art wrote:
I am very surprised that the procurement and running costs are seen as lower than F/A-18. I have never heard of F-35 being cheaper in either respect.

The Swiss would be able to tie into the massive support network available for the F-35, and leverage economies of scale to drive down costs. Coupled to the high fidelity simulators, I would expect the Swiss to spend less time flying to maintain proficiency, but more time on tactics.

And even then, the simulators for the F-35 are capable of being networked for multiple pilots to work on tactics against realistic foes.


As far as I have read, US forces' F-35 operating costs are much higher than expected. I think that is one reason why orders for F/A-18 have continued.

Regarding increased use of simulators, does the US do this? If it is good for Switzerland, it should be good for US, too. I have not heard of this advantage of F-35 over other types being mentioned in the context of US use of the F-35.
 
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SeamanBeaumont
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Wed Jun 30, 2021 9:32 pm

flyingturtle wrote:
About the costs per flying hour:

Here's the report - it's a series of live updates from the press conference: https://www.srf.ch/news/schweiz/kampfje ... schleudern

Darko Savic says:

«Die öffentlich kommunizierten Flugstundenkosten anderer Nationen halten wir nicht für belastbar. Wir aber verfügen über verbindliche Angaben für den F-35A. Die Betriebskosten pro Flugstunde betragen zwischen 55'000 und 60'000 Franken.»

"The publicly communicated flight hour costs of other nations we do not view as reliable. But we have binding indications for the F-35A. The operating hours per flight hours are between 55'000 and 60'000 Swiss Francs."

Flight hour costs for the F-35A are between $29,000 and $38,000, as I just googled. The latter figure is a number from a U.S. House Armed Forces Committee meeting.

55'000 Swiss Francs = 59'427 USD
60'000 Swiss Francs = 64'830 USD

There are costs and costs though, it all depends on which costs you chose to include. I know some nations list a cost per flight hour that includes all the accessory systems, maintenance staff, costs associated with operating an aircraft, infrastructure costs etc while others just list the per hour cost that only includes fuel and oil. Didn't the swiss say the Gripen was going to cost almost 30k an hour in 2013 when the Swedes say it is a thirds of that.
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SeamanBeaumont
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Re: Switzerland Restarting Fighter Competition

Wed Jun 30, 2021 9:35 pm

art wrote:
ThePointblank wrote:
art wrote:
I am very surprised that the procurement and running costs are seen as lower than F/A-18. I have never heard of F-35 being cheaper in either respect.

The Swiss would be able to tie into the massive support network available for the F-35, and leverage economies of scale to drive down costs. Coupled to the high fidelity simulators, I would expect the Swiss to spend less time flying to maintain proficiency, but more time on tactics.

And even then, the simulators for the F-35 are capable of being networked for multiple pilots to work on tactics against realistic foes.


As far as I have read, US forces' F-35 operating costs are much higher than expected. I think that is one reason why orders for F/A-18 have continued.

Regarding increased use of simulators, does the US do this? If it is good for Switzerland, it should be good for US, too. I have not heard of this advantage of F-35 over other types being mentioned in the context of US use of the F-35.

If there is one I know it is boats and the aircraft that fly off boats, the US Air force doesn't fly F/A-18s and the US Navy hasn't ordered new F/A-18s for the last two years.

Everyone tries to increase simulator time to reduce costs, the new US flight training system with the redtail will have increased simulator time.
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RJMAZ
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Re: Switzerland Restarting Fighter Competition

Wed Jun 30, 2021 9:55 pm

art wrote:
I am very surprised that the procurement and running costs are seen as lower than F/A-18. I have never heard of F-35 being cheaper in either respect.

The European members on here were cherry picking data to make the Eurocanards look cheaper. They were using F-35 running costs during the first year or two of service while they were still training crew on the jet and developing procedures. They were comparing the costs to mature systems. The F-35 is now dropping below the price of these mature systems as was planned from the very start.

The fake news on the F-35 has really been unprecedented. I honestly think that economy of scale of the F-35 kills the business case for any future European manned fighter. The F-35 is definitely the biggest threat to the European aviation industry. The fake news is an attempt to stop a monopoly. In 10 years time once the F-35 is no longer bleeding edge it will get sold to second tier countries and it will be the next F-16.

Killing the business case is simple. For Europe to develop something superior to the F-35 it would cost tens of a billions of dollars. With that cost divided over a few hundred frames the cost per frame could be over 3 times the cost of just purchasing the F-35. European nations are happy to pay double for the same quality of aircraft like with the Eurocanards just to maintain high tech manufacturing. Europe will pull the plug when it will cost 3, 4 or even 5 times the cost per aircraft.

I'm actually struggling to think of the category where Europe should concentrate their military sector to get good value. Maybe a spaceX competitor to keep the smart people busy. The Boeing T-7 is about to dominate the advanced trainer market and the rumoured light fighter version will capture new markets that typically buy used fighters or Chinese/Russian.
 
art
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Wed Jun 30, 2021 10:27 pm

From 2021...

Air Force officials recently said they are conducting a study to find the best mix of fighters including Lockheed Martin’s F-35, Boeing’s F-15EX and a replacement for the service’s oldest F-16s. Smith was thinking along similar lines.

“What I’m going to try to do is figure out how we can get a mix of fighter-attack aircraft that’s the most cost effective. And I am telling you right now a big part of that is finding something that doesn’t make us have to rely on the F-35 for the next 35 years,” he said.

Though the Joint Strike Fighter was conceived as a relatively affordable fifth-generation aircraft, it’s generally acknowledged as the world’s most expensive weapons platform. Flying the F-35 currently costs $36,000 per hour...


https://www.defensenews.com/congress/20 ... ur-losses/

So it is not cheap to operate. It is very expensive to operate, sufficiently so for USAF to be looking for some other type(s) to avoid the very high costs of operating F-35. If you look, you will find reports of Congress being alarmed by its cost, too.

"And I am telling you right now a big part of that is finding something that doesn’t make us have to rely on the F-35 for the next 35 years..." That is just what Switzerland has decided to do!
 
mxaxai
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Wed Jun 30, 2021 10:32 pm

SeamanBeaumont wrote:
Didn't the swiss say the Gripen was going to cost almost 30k an hour in 2013 when the Swedes say it is a thirds of that.

Switzerland expected yearly costs of approx. 100 million CHF per year for 22 Gripen E. According to the budget today, they're expecting costs in the order of 350 million CHF per year for 36 F-35.

This roughly matches the expected cost per flight hour, which was projected to be up to 24,000 CHF for the Gripen E and up to 60,000 CHF for the F-35, all inclusive.

Source for the Gripen data: https://www.newsd.admin.ch/newsd/messag ... /29345.pdf [German]
 
LTEN11
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Thu Jul 01, 2021 3:03 am

wingman wrote:
Gas is more expensive in Europe, that must be the difference. Anyway, this is one way to piss off Paris and Berlin equally. Viola says she doesn't intend to bomb Berlin but she just kinda did, with quick run over Paris on the way back.

I really am not sure why Switzerland needs 36 F35s, or any other advanced fighter for that matter. Live your life in blessed neutrality and everyone will see their way to letting you be so long as whatever benefit your neutrality provides is provided equally to all parties.


Still need to be able to defend yourself. Just because you have declared neutrality, doesn't mean that everyone else will respect that decision and not attempt to cause you harm. Having 36 F-35's in a few years is no different than having 30 odd F-18's in the 80's. Also, defending yourself doesn't just mean standing at your border waiting to be attacked, you need to be able to project that ability and the F-35, or any of the other frames that had been offered enable that objective.
 
RJMAZ
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Thu Jul 01, 2021 4:12 am

art wrote:
So it is not cheap to operate. It is very expensive to operate, sufficiently so for USAF to be looking for some other type(s) to avoid the very high costs of operating F-35. If you look, you will find reports of Congress being alarmed by its cost, too.

Here is an article from 2019 where the F-35 was $44,000 per hour and back then LM was confident it will reach $25,000 per hour by 2025. They are already at $36,000 an hour in 2021. That is an $8,000 an hour reduction in 2 years. LM have to reduce it a further $9,000 in 4 years. Switzerland is clearly confident they can hit that operating cost which is crazy low considering the capability.

https://www.popularmechanics.com/milita ... -35-cheap/

The USAF and Congress is simply putting pressure on LM to guarantee they hit that $25,000 target. GE is also putting pressure on Pratt to keep costs down. They have not cut a single F-35 order and the US currently wants as many F-35 aircraft as LM can produce.

The F-15EX has nothing to do with the F-35 costing too much. The business case was simple. The cost to purchase the F-15EX is less than the maintenance cost difference between the old C model and new EX model.

Likewise the rumoured 4.5 gen cleansheet F-16 replacement the same thing could happen. The cost of purchasing a fighter version of the T-7 would be less than the maintenance difference.
 
Alfons
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Thu Jul 01, 2021 6:44 am

I don't really understand this cost per hour thing. Aren't TCO numbers calculated considering also local costs? Can you compare a TCO number for a process including material and rent/footpring/labor costs between Asia, Europa and USA?

Regulations differ from country to country. While USA will put one Fire extinguisher in a corner, Switzerland must put 3. Salaries in CH are probably double that in the US, the square meter cost is maybe 5x higher, etc. etc.

What would be more interesting is to compare with the flight hour cost of an FA-18 in Switzerland.
 
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sebolino
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Thu Jul 01, 2021 7:27 am

Switzerland is a small, neutral country, surrounded by friendly, well equiped, alllied NATO countries. I really wonder which territory they want to enter stealthily and drop bombs. Austria maybe ?
What a lame choice !
 
mileduets
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Thu Jul 01, 2021 8:11 am

sebolino wrote:
Switzerland is a small, neutral country, surrounded by friendly, well equiped, alllied NATO countries. I really wonder which territory they want to enter stealthily and drop bombs. Austria maybe ?
What a lame choice !


In yesterday's press conference he Swiss minister of defence Viola Amherd was asked by a journalist why with the F-35A the choice was made for a fighter jet less well suited for air policing and interception, but rather for sneaky ground strikes. She answered by jokingly denying that they were planning to strike against Berlin.
An excellent opportunity for me to quote Shakespear: "The lady doth protest too much, methinks!"

All jokes aside - the Swiss military for a long time was bemoaning the lack of capability for ground attacks since the retirement of the Hunter jet. With the F-35 this is regained. Since the criterions of the selection process are not unveiled in detail I would not be surprised the F-35A's ground attack capability played a role.
 
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sebolino
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Thu Jul 01, 2021 8:29 am

I didn't see the initial RFP, but everybody in Swiss news papers say that it was for an air superiority plane.
Added to that, that nobody believes this "it's cheaper to operate" argument, and you wonder what pressure Biden was able to put on the Swiss to impose the F-35.
 
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SeamanBeaumont
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Thu Jul 01, 2021 8:48 am

sebolino wrote:
Switzerland is a small, neutral country, surrounded by friendly, well equiped, alllied NATO countries. I really wonder which territory they want to enter stealthily and drop bombs. Austria maybe ?
What a lame choice !

Why is this hard to understand?

From the Swiss answers to questions,

"Like the other fighter jets evaluated, the F-35A is a multi-role fighter. It is suitable for air-to-air missions as well as for air-to-ground missions and is not only designed for the latter. The Federal Council has stated that new combat aircraft are primarily procured for the protection and defense of the population as well as their own airspace, but must also be able to support the ground forces. Stealth properties are useful for the protection and defense of the airspace, because defending aircraft can only be seen later and at a shorter distance by an attacker and are therefore less vulnerable.

The choice of aircraft type will have no impact on Switzerland's basic security policy and military orientation."

As per the Swiss statement the F-35 also scored the highest in the technical/capability evaluation, clearly ahead of the other options based on the points awarded.
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sebolino
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Thu Jul 01, 2021 9:02 am

It's absolutely not hard to understand, provided Biden visit made the government change their mind totally.
What's more difficult to understand is these arguments about stealth capabilities. So the attacker would have crossed peacefully f.e. Polish & German airspace without being detected and then suddenly appear magically in the Swiss radar when it's too late to react. Hopefully they will have a stealth aircraft to defend themselves ! :-)
More of that, the air-to-air capabilities of the F-35 are not so impressive I was told.
 
RJMAZ
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Thu Jul 01, 2021 9:24 am

sebolino wrote:
I didn't see the initial RFP, but everybody in Swiss news papers say that it was for an air superiority plane.
Added to that, that nobody believes this "it's cheaper to operate" argument, and you wonder what pressure Biden was able to put on the Swiss to impose the F-35.

Lucky the F-35 is the best air superiority plane on the market.

Yes with years of fake news regarding the F-35 it is hard for many people to believe that it actually cheaper to operate. It is hard to believe that a stealth 5th gen fighter with the ultimate avionics can be cheaper than a tiny 4th gen Gripen that is half the weight. The F-35 is simply that good.
 
art
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Thu Jul 01, 2021 9:39 am

mileduets wrote:
All jokes aside - the Swiss military for a long time was bemoaning the lack of capability for ground attacks since the retirement of the Hunter jet. With the F-35 this is regained. Since the criterions of the selection process are not unveiled in detail I would not be surprised the F-35A's ground attack capability played a role.


All the contenders have a ground attack capability. Agreed, F-35 is better suited to penetrating defended airspace to launch ground attacks. But the need is principally for a fighter to defend/police Swiss airspace, isn't it?
 
art
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Thu Jul 01, 2021 9:50 am

RJMAZ wrote:
Yes with years of fake news regarding the F-35 it is hard for many people to believe that it actually cheaper to operate. It is hard to believe that a stealth 5th gen fighter with the ultimate avionics can be cheaper than a tiny 4th gen Gripen that is half the weight. The F-35 is simply that good.


You keep saying that F-35 is cheaper to operate than all the others. I have never seen any data suggesting that it is cheaper to operate than F/A-18. Show me something that says so, and please don't tell me that LM says it is unless they provide straightforward comparative data along the lines of cost per hour in terms of fuel burn, spares, man hours of maintenance required.
 
RJMAZ
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Thu Jul 01, 2021 10:24 am

art wrote:
You keep saying that F-35 is cheaper to operate than all the others. I have never seen any data suggesting that it is cheaper to operate than F/A-18. Show me something that says so, and please don't tell me that LM says it is unless they provide straightforward comparative data along the lines of cost per hour in terms of fuel burn, spares, man hours of maintenance required.

A trainer aircraft with a pair of sidewinder missiles will no doubt be cheaper per hour than the F-35. Once you take into account the fact you'll need over a dozen armed trainers to perform the job of a single F-35 then the F-35 is still cheaper to operate.

Militaries do not go out and say "We need 30 fighter jets." They set a requirement of missions that need to be performed and work out what combination of aircraft can satisfy the requirement using advanced simulation. The F-35 can perform any mission set with significantly fewer aircraft and lower lifetime cost.

The F-35 will win every fighter contest unless you are Germany. They would rather fly Cessna aircraft than purchase US fighter jets.
 
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SeamanBeaumont
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Thu Jul 01, 2021 10:40 am

sebolino wrote:
It's absolutely not hard to understand, provided Biden visit made the government change their mind totally.
What's more difficult to understand is these arguments about stealth capabilities. So the attacker would have crossed peacefully f.e. Polish & German airspace without being detected and then suddenly appear magically in the Swiss radar when it's too late to react. Hopefully they will have a stealth aircraft to defend themselves ! :-)
More of that, the air-to-air capabilities of the F-35 are not so impressive I was told.

Why would Biden have made the Government change their mind on a final proposal that was submitted months ago after a technical flying evaluation conducted by the Swiss of all contenders in 2019... The whole assesment was also independently audited and validated by an external Swiss bank.

Time to pull your head out and actually look at the contest with honest eyes.
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bikerthai
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Thu Jul 01, 2021 1:19 pm

art wrote:
You keep saying that F-35 is cheaper to operate than all the others. I have never seen any data suggesting that it is cheaper to operate than F/A-18.


For a small, "rich", neutral country like Switzerland, operating cost should be lower on the requirement list. So would the ability to drop a ton of bombs or fire a ton of missiles.

One of the top priority would be to execute their limited missions with the highest probability of getting their pilots home safely. For a small air force, their pilots should be their most valued commodity. Other than having a second engines, the F-35 has the best capability to get their pilots home safely.

bt
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keesje
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Thu Jul 01, 2021 2:36 pm

bikerthai wrote:

quote="art"]You keep saying that F-35 is cheaper to operate than all the others. I have never seen any data suggesting that it is cheaper to operate than F/A-18.

For a small, "rich", neutral country like Switzerland, operating cost should be lower on the requirement list. So would the ability to drop a ton of bombs or fire a ton of missiles.

One of the top priority would be to execute their limited missions with the highest probability of getting their pilots home safely. For a small air force, their pilots should be their most valued commodity. Other than having a second engines, the F-35 has the best capability to get their pilots home safely.

bt
[/quote]

I've spoken to twin engine fighter pilots who explicitly favored the extra bring-me-home engine. It just helps when a big bird or bullit gets in the way. If a F35 had 2 smaller engines, some airforces would love that
Last edited by keesje on Thu Jul 01, 2021 2:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Alfons
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Thu Jul 01, 2021 2:47 pm

I remember in the past (80ies, yes I'm Swiss) the saying that the pilots were specially training their ability to use the alps as a battlefield in a dogfight. They had to memorize every corner of every mountain so they could "fly around blindly". The idea was, in case of an enemy infiltration by air, to use the mountains as a hide and seek tool to win any dogfight. There is also the saying that US pilots were scared to land the F-5 in Switzerland when they were bought, as the runways were usually in the mountains.

Maybe this past need for natural stealth was a driver to get a fighter which is difficult to locate. Who knows.
 
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Thu Jul 01, 2021 3:58 pm

Alfons wrote:
They had to memorize every corner of every mountain so they could "fly around blindly". The idea was, in case of an enemy infiltration by air, to use the mountains as a hide and seek tool to win any dogfight.


I absolutely believe that. Also, using ridges and valleys in order to sneak up on enemy ground forces.

I wonder if Switzerland would have bought the Harrier in an alternate universe. Hiding these planes just anywhere, with zero chance of the enemy spotting the bases. Except by trying to pick up radio transmissions.
Reading accident reports is what calms me down
 
ThePointblank
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Thu Jul 01, 2021 7:08 pm

keesje wrote:
bikerthai wrote:

quote="art"]You keep saying that F-35 is cheaper to operate than all the others. I have never seen any data suggesting that it is cheaper to operate than F/A-18.

For a small, "rich", neutral country like Switzerland, operating cost should be lower on the requirement list. So would the ability to drop a ton of bombs or fire a ton of missiles.

One of the top priority would be to execute their limited missions with the highest probability of getting their pilots home safely. For a small air force, their pilots should be their most valued commodity. Other than having a second engines, the F-35 has the best capability to get their pilots home safely.

bt

I've spoken to twin engine fighter pilots who explicitly favored the extra bring-me-home engine. It just helps when a big bird or bullit gets in the way. If a F35 had 2 smaller engines, some airforces would love that

The data shows that for the most recent jet engine types, a single engine is as dependable as having two.

Look at the Class A mishap rates between the F-16 and the F-15 for the same engine type; for one example, the F-16 with the Pratt & Whitney’s F100-229 engine has never had a Class A mishap due to engine failure:
https://www.safety.af.mil/Portals/71/do ... PW-229.pdf
F-15's with the exact same engine type have accumulated 8 Class A mishaps over a similar time frame:
https://www.safety.af.mil/Portals/71/do ... PW-229.pdf
 
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bikerthai
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Thu Jul 01, 2021 9:53 pm

ThePointblank wrote:
The data shows that for the most recent jet engine types, a single engine is as dependable as having two.


From a statistical stand point if the engines are the same, then having two engines give you double the probability failure. The higher hull loss on the F-15 would have to come from other reason.

I mean if you lose an engine and still cant fly the airplane due to control issues then having the second engine would be of no use.

The other thought would be in the line of ETOPs. Because of the one engine, is there some other maintenance/rating that give you higher reliability on a single engine aircraft as opposed to a twin?


bt
Intelligent seeks knowledge. Enlightened seeks wisdom.
 
ThePointblank
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Thu Jul 01, 2021 10:11 pm

bikerthai wrote:
ThePointblank wrote:
The data shows that for the most recent jet engine types, a single engine is as dependable as having two.


From a statistical stand point if the engines are the same, then having two engines give you double the probability failure. The higher hull loss on the F-15 would have to come from other reason.

I mean if you lose an engine and still cant fly the airplane due to control issues then having the second engine would be of no use.

The other thought would be in the line of ETOPs. Because of the one engine, is there some other maintenance/rating that give you higher reliability on a single engine aircraft as opposed to a twin?


bt

The USAF's statistics are for engine-related Class A mishaps, directly linked to the engine.
 
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Aesma
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Fri Jul 02, 2021 12:20 am

I agree with the other question, are they maintained the same ?
New Technology is the name we give to stuff that doesn't work yet. Douglas Adams
 
SteelChair
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Fri Jul 02, 2021 12:40 am

It would be fantastic if the Swiss specify GE engines.
 
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SeamanBeaumont
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Fri Jul 02, 2021 1:30 am

SteelChair wrote:
It would be fantastic if the Swiss specify GE engines.

Huh...?

There is no GE engine option...
A whale, Seaman Beaumont, a whale...
 
777
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Fri Jul 02, 2021 7:09 am

Buying a 5th gen fighter also ensures a longer longevity from a technology standpoint, which eventually translates in a better investment in the long term.
 
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sebolino
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Fri Jul 02, 2021 7:57 am

RJMAZ wrote:
sebolino wrote:
I didn't see the initial RFP, but everybody in Swiss news papers say that it was for an air superiority plane.
Added to that, that nobody believes this "it's cheaper to operate" argument, and you wonder what pressure Biden was able to put on the Swiss to impose the F-35.

Lucky the F-35 is the best air superiority plane on the market.

Yes with years of fake news regarding the F-35 it is hard for many people to believe that it actually cheaper to operate. It is hard to believe that a stealth 5th gen fighter with the ultimate avionics can be cheaper than a tiny 4th gen Gripen that is half the weight. The F-35 is simply that good.


Are you actually believing what you write ?
 
Flying-Tiger
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Fri Jul 02, 2021 9:18 am

RJMAZ wrote:
Here is an article from 2019 where the F-35 was $44,000 per hour and back then LM was confident it will reach $25,000 per hour by 2025. They are already at $36,000 an hour in 2021. That is an $8,000 an hour reduction in 2 years. LM have to reduce it a further $9,000 in 4 years. Switzerland is clearly confident they can hit that operating cost which is crazy low considering the capability.

https://www.popularmechanics.com/milita ... -35-cheap/

The USAF and Congress is simply putting pressure on LM to guarantee they hit that $25,000 target. GE is also putting pressure on Pratt to keep costs down. They have not cut a single F-35 order and the US currently wants as many F-35 aircraft as LM can produce.


Pretty rosy colored glasses me strikes. Looking at various articles it is far from plain sailing for the F35 from the articles:

https://www.airforcetimes.com/congress/2021/06/29/smith-slams-f-35-lifecycle-costs-in-latest-salvo/

Though F-35 sustainment costs have long been a hot topic, the issue took on new urgency after the GAO reported in April a difference of $3.7 million per aircraft between actual sustainment costs and what the services project they can afford over the program’s lifecycle ― and projected a total overrun of $4.4 billion by 2036.


Beyond cost, average repair times stood at 131 days a year ago because there wasn’t enough depot capacity, according to a GAO finding. Richardson touched on those issues last week, telling lawmakers that more repair depots need to be in place quickly.
=> More fixed costs down the line to get availability up.

Air Force officials plan to complete a business-case analysis this summer to attack escalating sustainment costs, the service’s top uniformed acquisition official, Lt. Gen. Duke Richardson, said at a Senate hearing last week.


https://www.flightglobal.com/fixed-wing/new-lockheed-martin-exec-takes-over-f-35-programme-at-make-or-break-point/144172.article

The stealth fighter’s leading customer, the US Air Force (USAF), has also started to look elsewhere for fighter aircraft, most recently with the planned acquisition of 144 Boeing F-15EX Eagle IIs instead of some F-35s. In fact, there is growing suspicion that the service is also slow-walking its planned purchase of 1,763 F-35A aircraft until an alternative is available.


Lot 14 F-35A aircraft are to cost $77.9 million apiece, down 12.8% from lot 11. And, the F-35A’s mission capable rate rose from 61.6% in FY2019 to 76.1% in FY2020, according to the USAF. Mission capability rate is defined as the percentage of time an aircraft can fly and perform one of its tasked missions. However, the service’s minimum mission capability rate goal for the F-35A is 80% and its objective performance target is 90%.


Indeed, at this point there does not appear to be a path for the F-35A to reach a $25,000 per hour operating cost by FY2025, Lieutenant General Eric Fick, F-35 programme executive officer, told the House Armed Services Committee in April.


What surprises me most is the massive gap between the number of winning points for the F-35 (about 360) and the next competitor (about 270). That´s a massive gap which I´m not really able explain properly. If the F-35 really comes out that surperior during an all-in evaluation: why have there been several orders for Rafale etc. in the past few months?
Flown: A319/320/321,A332/3,A343/346, A359, A380,AT4,AT7,B712, B732/3/4/5/7/8/9,B742/4,B752/3, B762/763,B772/77W,CR2/7/9/K,ER3/4,E70/75/90/95, F50/70/100,M11,L15,SF3,S20, AR8/1, 142/143,... 330.860 miles and counting.
 
RJMAZ
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Fri Jul 02, 2021 9:29 am

sebolino wrote:
Are you actually believing what you write ?

Yes. As an aerospace engineer with a defence clearance you should believe it too..

Here is some good advice.

SeamanBeaumont wrote:
Time to pull your head out and actually look at the contest with honest eyes
 
RJMAZ
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Fri Jul 02, 2021 9:44 am

Flying-Tiger wrote:
GAO reported in April a difference of $3.7 million per aircraft between actual sustainment costs and what the services project they can afford over the program’s lifecycle ― and projected a total overrun of $4.4 billion by 2036.

This is excellent news.

$3.7 million higher sustainment per aircraft by 2036 is extremely good. As the aircraft will average 250 hours over 15 years that is only $986 per flight hour increase.

So if the projected sustainment cost was $25,000 per hour then the GAO think it will be under $26,000. This shows the costs are about to keep going lower and lower. $25k is excellent. $26k is still excellent. Anything under $30k per flight hour the F-35 is best option.


Flying-Tiger wrote:
What surprises me most is the massive gap between the number of winning points for the F-35 (about 360) and the next competitor (about 270). That´s a massive gap which I´m not really able explain properly. If the F-35 really comes out that surperior during an all-in evaluation: why have there been several orders for Rafale etc. in the past few months?

These countries were not allowed to get the F-35 due to security reasons. Every country dreams they could order an aircraft as good as the F-35.
 
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SeJoWa
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Fri Jul 02, 2021 11:36 am

Just a little comment directly from Switzerland - the way I understand the matter, the F-35's systems are deemed to be the most future proof and advanced with regards to pilots' situational awareness. If it was up to me, a couple of late-model F-16s would fit the bill too.
 
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bikerthai
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Fri Jul 02, 2021 12:20 pm

ThePointblank wrote:
The USAF's statistics are for engine-related Class A mishaps, directly linked to the engine.


Yes but my line of though is, after that one engine failure, is there something inherent in the F-15 design to make it much more difficult to land safely with one engine? If yes, then having that second engine may not be as useful.

bt
Intelligent seeks knowledge. Enlightened seeks wisdom.
 
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flyingturtle
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Fri Jul 02, 2021 2:37 pm

Darko Savic, the officer who is overseeing the fighter jet evaluation, declared that Switzerland only has a guaranteed maximum cost per flight hour for the first 10 years.

«Wir haben eine verbindliche Offerte für die ersten 10 Betriebsjahre»

"We have a binding offer for the first 10 operating years."

For the next 20 years of F-35A operations, Switzerland trusts the indications in Lockheed's offer. Switzerland did not evaluate flight hour cost data from other countries, because they were not comparable. So they did their own calculations, and accepted Lockheed's data...

The same article says that Denmark expected 8 billion CHF in operational costs for their 27 jets, over 30 years. But they had to revise the estimate and now they expect 12 to 13 billions in operational costs for 30 years.

https://www.srf.ch/news/schweiz/umstrit ... garantiert
Reading accident reports is what calms me down
 
RJMAZ
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Fri Jul 02, 2021 6:12 pm

flyingturtle wrote:
For the next 20 years of F-35A operations, Switzerland trusts the indications in Lockheed's offer. Switzerland did not evaluate flight hour cost data from other countries, because they were not comparable. So they did their own calculations, and accepted Lockheed's data...

This sounds correct.

Switzerland will have differrent mission requirements, stealth requirements and availability requirements. Based on the fact the Gripen was even being looked at would mean the F-35 would exceed requirements by a large margin.

For instance with stealth coating maintenance a country could completely skip this step and accept a flight hour cost saving at the expense of reduced stealth. The F-35 would no doubt still exceed the Swiss performance requirement with reduced coating maintenance. In 20 years time if new threats appear the Swiss can then start keeping the coatings maintained to higher levels at higher costs.

Aircraft availablity also plays a huge part at the cost per flight hour. If you want 100% aircraft availability you would need climate controlled hangers with an unrealistic number of maintenance crews continuously polishing the jets. For 80% aircraft availability a country might need 50% of the maintenance crews. For 60% aircraft availability a country might need only 20% of the maintenance crew of that unrealistic number. The Swiss might be perfectly happy with 60% availability and get a big flight hour cost reduction in the process. The USAF goal is 80%.

Currently with other F-35 operators the availability is going up yet the cost per flight hour is still going down. The USAF F-35A’s aircraft availablity rate rose from 61.6% in FY2019 to 76.1% in FY2020 as posted a few posts up. To get that increase from a mature system would usually cost lots of money. For the F-35 to still get a flight hour cost reductions shows how rapidly costs are coming down.

Members here googling historic flight hour costs and aircraft prices during low rate production should refrain from filling this thread up with nonsense.
 
889091
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Fri Jul 02, 2021 10:11 pm

Considering the Swiss Air Force have flown the wings off their F-18s before the airframes timed out on their cycle count, will they be doing the same to the F-35As, as they will have limited actual flight time (most time spent on the sims)?
 
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bikerthai
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Fri Jul 02, 2021 11:23 pm

889091 wrote:
, will they be doing the same to the F-35As, as they will have limited actual flight time (most time spent on the sims)?


Not sure if they need to. Carbon fiber frames have higher fatigue life than metal frame. If they stay away from aluminum components and stick with titanium to avoid galvanic corrosion, then the frame would last a long time.

bt
Intelligent seeks knowledge. Enlightened seeks wisdom.
 
ThePointblank
Topic Author
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Fri Jul 02, 2021 11:34 pm

bikerthai wrote:
889091 wrote:
, will they be doing the same to the F-35As, as they will have limited actual flight time (most time spent on the sims)?


Not sure if they need to. Carbon fiber frames have higher fatigue life than metal frame. If they stay away from aluminum components and stick with titanium to avoid galvanic corrosion, then the frame would last a long time.

bt

The problem with the Swiss Hornets is because they strengthened the centre barrel, it transferred stresses that would have accumulated in the centre barrel to other sections of the aircraft, where the ability to detect and repair cracks was more problematic.

It's a similar reason to why the US Navy's F-16N's were retired early despite having the wings strengthened; it transferred stresses onto other sections of the airframe, and eventually caused premature cracking of the bulkheads that were too expensive to repair.
 
johns624
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Sat Jul 03, 2021 12:06 am

sebolino wrote:
Switzerland is a small, neutral country, surrounded by friendly, well equiped, alllied NATO countries. I really wonder which territory they want to enter stealthily and drop bombs. Austria maybe ?
What a lame choice !
That's today. What about 30 years from now? Geopolitical ties change over the years. I remember when Venezuela was our "friend" and we sold them F16s. At that time, due to the drug trade, Colombia was the "enemy". Now, their roles are reversed.
 
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SeamanBeaumont
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Sat Jul 03, 2021 12:59 am

bikerthai wrote:
889091 wrote:
, will they be doing the same to the F-35As, as they will have limited actual flight time (most time spent on the sims)?


Not sure if they need to. Carbon fiber frames have higher fatigue life than metal frame. If they stay away from aluminum components and stick with titanium to avoid galvanic corrosion, then the frame would last a long time.

bt

The F-35A is rated to a higher flight hour than the hornet so there is more life in the airframe to begin with.
A whale, Seaman Beaumont, a whale...
 
Irt
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Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Sat Jul 03, 2021 11:45 am

johns624 wrote:
sebolino wrote:
Switzerland is a small, neutral country, surrounded by friendly, well equiped, alllied NATO countries. I really wonder which territory they want to enter stealthily and drop bombs. Austria maybe ?
What a lame choice !
That's today. What about 30 years from now? Geopolitical ties change over the years. I remember when Venezuela was our "friend" and we sold them F16s. At that time, due to the drug trade, Colombia was the "enemy". Now, their roles are reversed.


Yeah i mean in 30 years time maybe Europe is at war with the US, who knows?
 
FlapOperator
Posts: 210
Joined: Tue Jun 29, 2021 4:07 pm

Re: Updated: Switzerland deciding to buy F-35A fighter jets

Sat Jul 03, 2021 7:46 pm

Irt wrote:
johns624 wrote:
sebolino wrote:
Switzerland is a small, neutral country, surrounded by friendly, well equiped, alllied NATO countries. I really wonder which territory they want to enter stealthily and drop bombs. Austria maybe ?
What a lame choice !
That's today. What about 30 years from now? Geopolitical ties change over the years. I remember when Venezuela was our "friend" and we sold them F16s. At that time, due to the drug trade, Colombia was the "enemy". Now, their roles are reversed.


Yeah i mean in 30 years time maybe Europe is at war with the US, who knows?


I would say its far more likely there will be no US forces in Europe on that timeline.
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