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bikerthai
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Thu Jan 09, 2020 7:29 pm

It's not the Computing Equipment that will take up the room. It's the number of operators that will determine the size of plane as. Typical mission console size have not changed that much. So if they want to maintain the same number of console operator, then they would need similar floor space.

As for computing PC on a military aircraft, even if the chips or cards are "off the shelf" the EMI shielding is obtained at different levels: The aircraft, the cabinets and the LRU chassis themselves. This is where a 747 or 767 or an A330 works as shielding design as it is already done. Shielding a 777 would require new engineering work.


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strfyr51
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Thu Jan 09, 2020 10:35 pm

bikerthai wrote:
JayinKitsap wrote:
The search begins for used 747-8i planes.


Why 747-8i? I mean the seat tracks may make it easy to design the interiors, but if push comes to shove, wouldn't a 747-8F works just as well?

747-8, 767-46 and A330 are good candidates as EMI shielding designs are already done.

bt

It will more than likely have to be a 747-8F to install and accommodate all the gear and crew though I could for see the 777 200 or 300 based approach as well.
They have the range and endurance as well. While the A330 or A350 might be useful I doubt that the USAF would turn over any modification specs to Airbus as a prime contractor. And NO doubt the USAF will have their OWN modifications in mind !!
 
ZaphodHarkonnen
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Thu Jan 09, 2020 11:07 pm

Raptormodeller wrote:
E4B takes what? 100 people, they'll probably go for commonality with 747-8, probably the freighter or a ULR 777 or A350. A350 is unlikely because it's not American. So maybe the choice is 747-8 freighter, 777-8 or maybe a 787 on steroids. I don't see the 767 happening. Sure most of the computing power needed today could be done a couple, ok a few large PC's but the E4 needs to work in a nuclear exchange and digital electronics have a habit and not a practically fixable one of going awry under increased radiation levels etc... even more so on top of the line modern PC's whose brains work at or close to the atomic level, which is a bit shit when you're going to be bombarded by a lot of alpha particles in your mission... survive and control during a nuclear holocaust. the USAF will need the size of a 777/747 for the semi digital/analogue computers currently in use which WORK and probably very well (otherwise they wouldn't use them on their last ditch effort to command their armies), sure they'll be updated and better blah blah but you get what I mean. I don't see USAF using a 767 or even a 737 for that matter. That's my opinion on this E4 replacement....


You mention worries about computing in a bad environment like that. What do you think would happen to all the electronics on the B77X or B787 in such a situation? You'd have to add tons of equipment and shielding to deal with such things. And it'd be interesting to find out how easy it would be to make a B787 a faraday cage with the composite fuselage. Finally alpha particles are stopped by a thin sheet of paper and even beta particles are stopped by a thin sheet of aluminium. It's gamma you'll be worried about. And anything capable of taking out electronics with enough energy to destroy them will likely be a pretty quick kill for anyone in the aircraft.

The B767-2C is the front runner as it's in active production and it's big. Not 747 big, but it'll be big enough. And it already has had all the military requirement tweaks done. Anything specific to an E4 replacement is the only mods to be made.

If the USN can make do with the https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boeing_E-6_Mercury then the US Sec Def can make do with something bigger but maybe not quite 747 sized.
 
Raptormodeller
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Thu Jan 09, 2020 11:36 pm

ZaphodHarkonnen wrote:
Raptormodeller wrote:
E4B takes what? 100 people, they'll probably go for commonality with 747-8, probably the freighter or a ULR 777 or A350. A350 is unlikely because it's not American. So maybe the choice is 747-8 freighter, 777-8 or maybe a 787 on steroids. I don't see the 767 happening. Sure most of the computing power needed today could be done a couple, ok a few large PC's but the E4 needs to work in a nuclear exchange and digital electronics have a habit and not a practically fixable one of going awry under increased radiation levels etc... even more so on top of the line modern PC's whose brains work at or close to the atomic level, which is a bit shit when you're going to be bombarded by a lot of alpha particles in your mission... survive and control during a nuclear holocaust. the USAF will need the size of a 777/747 for the semi digital/analogue computers currently in use which WORK and probably very well (otherwise they wouldn't use them on their last ditch effort to command their armies), sure they'll be updated and better blah blah but you get what I mean. I don't see USAF using a 767 or even a 737 for that matter. That's my opinion on this E4 replacement....


You mention worries about computing in a bad environment like that. What do you think would happen to all the electronics on the B77X or B787 in such a situation? You'd have to add tons of equipment and shielding to deal with such things. And it'd be interesting to find out how easy it would be to make a B787 a faraday cage with the composite fuselage. Finally alpha particles are stopped by a thin sheet of paper and even beta particles are stopped by a thin sheet of aluminium. It's gamma you'll be worried about. And anything capable of taking out electronics with enough energy to destroy them will likely be a pretty quick kill for anyone in the aircraft.

The B767-2C is the front runner as it's in active production and it's big. Not 747 big, but it'll be big enough. And it already has had all the military requirement tweaks done. Anything specific to an E4 replacement is the only mods to be made.

If the USN can make do with the https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boeing_E-6_Mercury then the US Sec Def can make do with something bigger but maybe not quite 747 sized.


Valid points.
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UA444
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Tue Mar 03, 2020 3:33 am

E4 is a last resort AF1. It will be a 747. The people suggesting smaller planes are completely out of touch.
 
starrion
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Tue Mar 03, 2020 4:07 pm

Then they're runnng out of time to get a 748 as the line will close unless they get an order in soon. Unless they are going to take one or more of the white tails/ parked frames that are up for sale.
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747classic
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Tue Mar 03, 2020 4:37 pm

starrion wrote:
Then they're runnng out of time to get a 748 as the line will close unless they get an order in soon. Unless they are going to take one or more of the white tails/ parked frames that are up for sale.


AirBridgeCargo has a few remaining 747-8F orders , but seen the shutdown of sister company CargoLogicAir (both are part of the Volga Dnepr group) and the transfer of a 747-8F to ABC and a new one to be delivered this month , I doubt if ABC wants to take all ordered 747-8F's.
White tails are only two 747-8I aircraft
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Dutchy
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Tue Mar 03, 2020 4:57 pm

UPS Airlines has 13 on order and Volga-Dnepr Airlines has got only 4 on order. With an one or one replacement, 4 are needed. will UPS take all 13? With a looming recession, I doubt it.
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Buckeyetech
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Tue Mar 03, 2020 5:07 pm

Since the new Air Force Ones will be without in-flight refueling, it makes even that more sense to go with a KC-46 derivative, instead of modding a handful of 747s.
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Stitch
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Tue Mar 03, 2020 5:15 pm

Pretty sure the E-8 JSTARS used commercial 707s that were then converted so if it has to be a 747 platform, the USAF can follow the same route - plenty of parked 747-400 passenger and freighter frames to choose from.
 
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747classic
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Tue Mar 03, 2020 5:21 pm

Dutchy wrote:
UPS Airlines has 13 on order and Volga-Dnepr Airlines has got only 4 on order. With an one or one replacement, 4 are needed. will UPS take all 13? With a looming recession, I doubt it.


UPS still has a capacity shortage and obtained this month as a stop gap 2X former Lufthansa Cargo MD-11F aircraft, more could follow.
ABC delivers general cargo, more recession prown.
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Dutchy
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Tue Mar 03, 2020 5:38 pm

Stitch wrote:
Pretty sure the E-8 JSTARS used commercial 707s that were then converted so if it has to be a 747 platform, the USAF can follow the same route - plenty of parked 747-400 passenger and freighter frames to choose from.


Would the USAF want to add another type, especially one that has been out of production for so long?
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Stitch
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Tue Mar 03, 2020 5:41 pm

Dutchy wrote:
Would the USAF want to add another type, especially one that has been out of production for so long?


If it "has" to be a 747, they will have no choice.

I personally believe it does not "have" to be a 747 - and neither does the USAF considering the cancelled E-10 MC2A program would have replaced the role of the E-4 (amongst others) using the 767-400ER airframe.
 
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rturner
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Tue Mar 10, 2020 1:49 am

From a functionality standpoint I could see the 777 or 787 being the logical choice. Maybe even a 767 re-engined.

From a commonality standpoint and a logical choice: the 747. They already have the 2 8i's, and they can get some second hands pretty cheap.

Let's say they take the -8.

The -8i is not as stout on the main deck as the -8F. They don't need the SUD space up top. They can retrofit the interior of the 8F and make it into a PAX cabin pretty easily. Add a few filters and a few AC units. You wouldn't have to worry about the issues of radiation getting into the windows because the windows aren't there like the Intercontinental has.

The 8i has more space for DOD things though. It's not as strong, and the SUD for sure is not strong at all. You could get a few racks of equipment there and be "good".

If i'm looking at it from a military standpoint, the -8F with a retrofit is the smartest choice. But then again it's the military and they make the rules. For all we know they could get a B37M and get a few guys with tablets and call it the doomsday plane.
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747classic
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Tue Mar 10, 2020 7:31 am

Seen the present very difficult status of the Volga Dnepr Group :

- CargologicAir shut down
- Transfer of the single CargologicAir 747-8F to Air Bridge Cargo (ABC).
- ABC Cargo load factors down, due trade wars and Covid 19 virus.
- A new ABC 747-8F ready to be delivered at Everett, but it seems ABC has no hurry to accept this 747-8F..
- 4 remaining ABC 747-8F orders

Ideal circumstances (for POTUS) for a very favorite deal to obtain the last available new built "green" 747-8F aircraft (and also from a former Russian order, like both VC-25B's !!)
Operating a twin over the ocean, you're always one engine failure from a total emergency.
 
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Tugger
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Tue Mar 10, 2020 7:21 pm

Why not use the old (current) VC airframes? They have very low use hours and they have many of the needed upgrades and they own them.

Tugg
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Phosphorus
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Tue Mar 10, 2020 11:34 pm

747classic wrote:
Seen the present very difficult status of the Volga Dnepr Group :

- CargologicAir shut down
- Transfer of the single CargologicAir 747-8F to Air Bridge Cargo (ABC).
- ABC Cargo load factors down, due trade wars and Covid 19 virus.
- A new ABC 747-8F ready to be delivered at Everett, but it seems ABC has no hurry to accept this 747-8F..
- 4 remaining ABC 747-8F orders

Ideal circumstances (for POTUS) for a very favorite deal to obtain the last available new built "green" 747-8F aircraft (and also from a former Russian order, like both VC-25B's !!)

So very true. VD group has been in some difficulty for a while now, but now reality really bites. Exiting remaining 747-8f orders would be, at the moment, a Godsend for them.
Add to it LN 1435 for all testing and integration experiments (and/or eventual modification to final standard, and subsequent induction) and you have a low-cost, "so much winning" solution for USAF.
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Buckeyetech
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Wed Mar 11, 2020 11:55 am

Completely forgot that SecDef Rumsfeld tried to divest the E-4 fleet a few years ago. It’s almost been a month since the Air Force held a meeting over the recapitalization, with a target date of next year? Very intriguing to see what the Air Force will pick. Fingers crossed they go with a modified KC-46.

https://breakingdefense.com/2020/02/air ... n-in-2021/
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mmo
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Wed Mar 11, 2020 1:41 pm

With all the talk about a 748I or 748F, I think people are forgetting the fact, the E-4 replacement will require A/R capability. The VC-25A replacement does not have that and adding that option is will be very expensive. It makes more sense to go with something which has the capability already. A modified KC-46 without all the A/R plumbing not installed and just the receiver plumbing installed it would be a very useful replacement. If they really wanted to save money, then they could use a stock KC-46A with the A/R plumbing and boom installed bot buddy refueling if needed.

As much as I loved flying the 747 family, I just don't think it will be selected as a replacement.
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747classic
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Wed Mar 11, 2020 4:31 pm

mmo wrote:
With all the talk about a 748I or 748F, I think people are forgetting the fact, the E-4 replacement will require A/R capability. The VC-25A replacement does not have that and adding that option is will be very expensive. It makes more sense to go with something which has the capability already. A modified KC-46 without all the A/R plumbing not installed and just the receiver plumbing installed it would be a very useful replacement. If they really wanted to save money, then they could use a stock KC-46A with the A/R plumbing and boom installed bot buddy refueling if needed.

As much as I loved flying the 747 family, I just don't think it will be selected as a replacement.


Deleting the A/R from the future VC-25B was a political move (PR : it saves a lot of money, "fake news"), not a military decision.

Section 41 (the fwd section) of the VC-25A (present AF1), E-4B and a future 747-8F based E4B replacement are all aerodynamically exactly the same (short upperdeck), so aerodynamical certification testing would be minimal.

Beside the jump from the paper drawings of the present 747 A/R system (re-fuelling mechanism + tubing ) into the digital age (as performed with all 747 drawings from L/N 1145, a 744 for China Airlines, in 1998.) nothing has to be adapted mechanically, only the A/R control has to be integrated into the digital controlled fuel system (no F/E on board).
Operating a twin over the ocean, you're always one engine failure from a total emergency.
 
ZaphodHarkonnen
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Wed Mar 11, 2020 7:37 pm

747classic wrote:
mmo wrote:
With all the talk about a 748I or 748F, I think people are forgetting the fact, the E-4 replacement will require A/R capability. The VC-25A replacement does not have that and adding that option is will be very expensive. It makes more sense to go with something which has the capability already. A modified KC-46 without all the A/R plumbing not installed and just the receiver plumbing installed it would be a very useful replacement. If they really wanted to save money, then they could use a stock KC-46A with the A/R plumbing and boom installed bot buddy refueling if needed.

As much as I loved flying the 747 family, I just don't think it will be selected as a replacement.


Deleting the A/R from the future VC-25B was a political move (PR : it saves a lot of money, "fake news"), not a military decision.

Section 41 (the fwd section) of the VC-25A (present AF1), E-4B and a future 747-8F based E4B replacement are all aerodynamically exactly the same (short upperdeck), so aerodynamical certification testing would be minimal.

Beside the jump from the paper drawings of the present 747 A/R system (re-fuelling mechanism + tubing ) into the digital age (as performed with all 747 drawings from L/N 1145, a 744 for China Airlines, in 1998.) nothing has to be adapted mechanically, only the A/R control has to be integrated into the digital controlled fuel system (no F/E on board).


Ummmmm, adding it in the first place was a political decision. Its been pointed out here before that the B747-200 met the range requirement without Aerial Refueling. The requirement only being added to keep the DC-10 in the running.

And even if it is as easy as you think it is, that's still a massive amount of extra work. When the B767-2C is ready to go with no extra rework needed.
 
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Wed Mar 11, 2020 7:53 pm

OK, I'll say it again:
What about using the current VC-25 aircraft? They already have AR installed, have low hours and can be used for decades to come, they are already modified with many of the needed elements (hardened for one), and are owned already.

Tugg
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Phosphorus
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Wed Mar 11, 2020 8:03 pm

Tugger wrote:
OK, I'll say it again:
What about using the current VC-25 aircraft? They already have AR installed, have low hours and can be used for decades to come, they are already modified with many of the needed elements (hardened for one), and are owned already.

Tugg

Aren't these essentially 747-200 with some tech from 747-400 (plus the obvious USAF and other USGovt modifications)? I can only imagine, what are the efforts now, to keep spares stocks up to date, full, ready and current.
Now, imagine this same problem 30 years down the line.
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mmo
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Wed Mar 11, 2020 9:10 pm

747classic wrote:


Deleting the A/R from the future VC-25B was a political move (PR : it saves a lot of money, "fake news"), not a military decision.

Section 41 (the fwd section) of the VC-25A (present AF1), E-4B and a future 747-8F based E4B replacement are all aerodynamically exactly the same (short upperdeck), so aerodynamical certification testing would be minimal.

Beside the jump from the paper drawings of the present 747 A/R system (re-fuelling mechanism + tubing ) into the digital age (as performed with all 747 drawings from L/N 1145, a 744 for China Airlines, in 1998.) nothing has to be adapted mechanically, only the A/R control has to be integrated into the digital controlled fuel system (no F/E on board).


I agree with you up to a point. However, if the aircraft is going to be FAA certified, then regardless of the commonality it will be an expensive mod. The autopilot has to have the A/R mode installed in the software and since that has not even been designed or written, that alone will be a monumental expense.
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Buckeyetech
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Wed Mar 11, 2020 10:21 pm

mmo wrote:
747classic wrote:


Deleting the A/R from the future VC-25B was a political move (PR : it saves a lot of money, "fake news"), not a military decision.

Section 41 (the fwd section) of the VC-25A (present AF1), E-4B and a future 747-8F based E4B replacement are all aerodynamically exactly the same (short upperdeck), so aerodynamical certification testing would be minimal.

Beside the jump from the paper drawings of the present 747 A/R system (re-fuelling mechanism + tubing ) into the digital age (as performed with all 747 drawings from L/N 1145, a 744 for China Airlines, in 1998.) nothing has to be adapted mechanically, only the A/R control has to be integrated into the digital controlled fuel system (no F/E on board).


I agree with you up to a point. However, if the aircraft is going to be FAA certified, then regardless of the commonality it will be an expensive mod. The autopilot has to have the A/R mode installed in the software and since that has not even been designed or written, that alone will be a monumental expense.


The cost of keeping pilots certified in aerial refueling would be an additional cost also. The Air Force spends a boat load of money keeping pilots certified on their transports, AR qualified, when it’s almost never used in real world missions.
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kc135topboom
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Wed Mar 11, 2020 11:54 pm

The VC-25A pilots and crews maintain thier A/R currency in the E-4B.
 
SuperiorPilotMe
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Thu Mar 12, 2020 1:36 am

Tugger wrote:
OK, I'll say it again:
What about using the current VC-25 aircraft? They already have AR installed, have low hours and can be used for decades to come, they are already modified with many of the needed elements (hardened for one), and are owned already.

Tugg


Hours and airframe fatigue. If that wasn’t the case they wouldn’t be replaced in their original role.
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bikerthai
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Thu Mar 12, 2020 4:23 am

SuperiorPilotMe wrote:
Hours and airframe fatigue.


Highly doubt this. While most 747 makes two or more flight per day. The VC-25 spends most of it's life sitting in the tarmac. Even on overseas trip, it is probably on the ground more than flying.

The value in the two presidential 747s are not how much money you can save by repurposing them to another mission. They will be more valuable culturally preserved as museaum displays.

bt
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ThePointblank
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Thu Mar 12, 2020 7:22 am

bikerthai wrote:
SuperiorPilotMe wrote:
Hours and airframe fatigue.


Highly doubt this. While most 747 makes two or more flight per day. The VC-25 spends most of it's life sitting in the tarmac. Even on overseas trip, it is probably on the ground more than flying.

The value in the two presidential 747s are not how much money you can save by repurposing them to another mission. They will be more valuable culturally preserved as museaum displays.

bt

Would be more of spare parts availability. The VC-25's are technically 747-200B's with some systems from the 747-400's. Very few 747-200's are left, and the number of 747-400's are also dwindling. Getting a hold of spare parts would be increasingly difficult and costly because of diminishing user base.
 
texl1649
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Thu Mar 12, 2020 11:08 am

The VC-25B of course won’t have AR. As Marine 1, KC-135, C-5 and the B-52 fleet has demonstrated the DoD can maintain weird ancient planes a long time, and the 747-200 was at least a highly reliable civil transport to start with. The E-4 replacement I think will need a lot less space and power though, as electronics just aren’t as energy intensive as they were 40 years ago.
 
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Tugger
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Thu Mar 12, 2020 5:03 pm

ThePointblank wrote:
bikerthai wrote:
SuperiorPilotMe wrote:
Hours and airframe fatigue.


Highly doubt this. While most 747 makes two or more flight per day. The VC-25 spends most of it's life sitting in the tarmac. Even on overseas trip, it is probably on the ground more than flying.

The value in the two presidential 747s are not how much money you can save by repurposing them to another mission. They will be more valuable culturally preserved as museaum displays.

bt

Would be more of spare parts availability. The VC-25's are technically 747-200B's with some systems from the 747-400's. Very few 747-200's are left, and the number of 747-400's are also dwindling. Getting a hold of spare parts would be increasingly difficult and costly because of diminishing user base.

I don't think that is accurate at all. The more 747 that retire quite frankly, the more spare parts will be available. I can't see spares being a huge issue. The 747 family will be flying for another 10 to 20 years, there will be spares.

Tugg
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kanban
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Thu Mar 12, 2020 5:34 pm

Retired aircraft can and do provide "spare" parts, however many of those have service life constraints and others need extensive zero timing. Some require replacement components that manufacturers no longer provide. so while there may be piles of "spares" many are just not cost effective to bring back into service.
 
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bikerthai
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Thu Mar 12, 2020 5:39 pm

Tugger wrote:
ThePointblank wrote:
bikerthai wrote:

Highly doubt this. While most 747 makes two or more flight per day. The VC-25 spends most of it's life sitting in the tarmac. Even on overseas trip, it is probably on the ground more than flying.

The value in the two presidential 747s are not how much money you can save by repurposing them to another mission. They will be more valuable culturally preserved as museaum displays.

bt

Would be more of spare parts availability. The VC-25's are technically 747-200B's with some systems from the 747-400's. Very few 747-200's are left, and the number of 747-400's are also dwindling. Getting a hold of spare parts would be increasingly difficult and costly because of diminishing user base.

I don't think that is accurate at all. The more 747 that retire quite frankly, the more spare parts will be available. I can't see spares being a huge issue. The 747 family will be flying for another 10 to 20 years, there will be spares.

Tugg


When was the last time the current VC-25 had an electronic upgrade? I can see problems getting spares for the mission suite being more problematic than the airframe or engines.

bt
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Mortyman
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Thu Mar 12, 2020 5:49 pm

I'm sure Airbus would be willing to sell / design them a special version of the Airbus A330 MRTT ;-) something tels me however, that the US government would not be interested in buying from Airbus.
 
texl1649
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Thu Mar 12, 2020 6:05 pm

The logical solution would be a derivative of the P8 frame, already militarized and configured a bit for endurance etc. also, clearly, would give the guys in Renton some more actual production work.
 
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Phosphorus
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Thu Mar 12, 2020 7:06 pm

texl1649 wrote:
The logical solution would be a derivative of the P8 frame, already militarized and configured a bit for endurance etc. also, clearly, would give the guys in Renton some more actual production work.

Folks here argue 767-sized frame would be too tight for E-4 replacement. Are they wrong, and could you package all that into a P-8 derivative?
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Ozair
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Thu Mar 12, 2020 9:01 pm

Phosphorus wrote:
texl1649 wrote:
The logical solution would be a derivative of the P8 frame, already militarized and configured a bit for endurance etc. also, clearly, would give the guys in Renton some more actual production work.

Folks here argue 767-sized frame would be too tight for E-4 replacement. Are they wrong, and could you package all that into a P-8 derivative?


There is no reason they can not fit the electronics hardware inside a P-8, same with the 767. The issue is what platform the USAF finds acceptable to mount that hardware, its endurance, its staffing requirements etc.

I think a 767 derivative is still the best option given how long the KC-46 will be in USAF service but when it comes to nuclear modernization nothing is coming cheaper or very much smaller so maintaining the same platform is a strong possibility.
 
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747classic
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Thu Mar 12, 2020 9:02 pm

As stated earlier in this thread :
In an E-4B replacement aircraft you can replace the older, partly analogue E-4B equipment with smaller, lighter digital stuff, but you still have to have a lot of specialist brains (=humans) on board, to filter the right info out of the excessive large data stream that's entering the aircraft in a real emergency. These specialist also have to sleep, eat etc.

So an E-4B replacement needs a lot of floor space, not for the smaller digital equipment, but for the many control stations to filter and evaluate the incoming data stream.
IMHO a 767-2C and a P8 frame have not enough floorspace for this task.
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Stitch
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Thu Mar 12, 2020 10:07 pm

747classic wrote:
So an E-4B replacement needs a lot of floor space, not for the smaller digital equipment, but for the many control stations to filter and evaluate the incoming data stream.
IMHO a 767-2C and a P8 frame have not enough floorspace for this task.


They felt a 767-400ER had enough floorspace when that platform was originally tasked to be the E-4B replacement so perhaps a 767-300F will be large enough to hold the staff and equipment.
 
ThePointblank
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Fri Mar 13, 2020 3:30 am

Tugger wrote:
ThePointblank wrote:
bikerthai wrote:

Highly doubt this. While most 747 makes two or more flight per day. The VC-25 spends most of it's life sitting in the tarmac. Even on overseas trip, it is probably on the ground more than flying.

The value in the two presidential 747s are not how much money you can save by repurposing them to another mission. They will be more valuable culturally preserved as museaum displays.

bt

Would be more of spare parts availability. The VC-25's are technically 747-200B's with some systems from the 747-400's. Very few 747-200's are left, and the number of 747-400's are also dwindling. Getting a hold of spare parts would be increasingly difficult and costly because of diminishing user base.

I don't think that is accurate at all. The more 747 that retire quite frankly, the more spare parts will be available. I can't see spares being a huge issue. The 747 family will be flying for another 10 to 20 years, there will be spares.

Tugg

The VC-25's are a bespoke variant of the 747, with a mix of systems from both the older 747-200, and the 747-400. They have a number of fairly unique systems as a result of this mix, some of which are no longer being made.

Not many of the 747-200's left out there, and they are slowly being phased out as they time out.

And the USAF generally requires that the parts are new; they rarely go out and purchased used components salvaged off a retired airframe.
 
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Fri Mar 13, 2020 11:58 pm

Mortyman wrote:
I'm sure Airbus would be willing to sell / design them a special version of the Airbus A330 MRTT ;-) something tels me however, that the US government would not be interested in buying from Airbus.


That would’ve made sense if we went with KC-45. It doesn’t now. The E-4s are hard enough to support even as a common frame.
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texl1649
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Sat Mar 14, 2020 12:16 am

Stitch wrote:
747classic wrote:
So an E-4B replacement needs a lot of floor space, not for the smaller digital equipment, but for the many control stations to filter and evaluate the incoming data stream.
IMHO a 767-2C and a P8 frame have not enough floorspace for this task.


They felt a 767-400ER had enough floorspace when that platform was originally tasked to be the E-4B replacement so perhaps a 767-300F will be large enough to hold the staff and equipment.


In the world of 2020+ it is tough to see why 50 plus persons are needed in an airborne command platform, period. Just as the F-35 has been able to synthesize a ton of data inputs for one person to analyze, so should a future C3I platform such as this. If no ground links are available at all then...there’s not much utility to the platform anyway. The bottom line is that this future platform shouldn’t be conceived around it’s predecessor Staffing/power needs any more than the E-3 replacement is.
 
rlwynn
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Sun Mar 15, 2020 8:30 am

Can you stand up in a 767 cargo hold?
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bikerthai
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Sun Mar 15, 2020 12:03 pm

If you look around in the web, you'll see the pallet comparison between the aircrafts.

The 767 lower lobe pallet is 5'4. The 747 is 5'6 and the 777 is about the same. If you remove the cargo handling equipment you may gain an inch or two.

bt
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SuperiorPilotMe
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Mon Mar 16, 2020 4:09 pm

rlwynn wrote:
Can you stand up in a 767 cargo hold?


I cannot conceive how that can even be a factor. If the cargo hold isn’t converted to fuel tanks, then it’ll either be stuffed with equipment or...used as a cargo hold.

Either way it’s better to stuff equipment in the cargo hold to free up living/working space in the part if the plane actually designed for that. A 762 has *plenty* of room for a sizable crew - remember the damn thing was designed to carry nearly 200 people - and if it comes to that Boeing *might* be able to revert to the 764 floor plan.

I highly doubt it. But I highly doubt the 762 will somehow be overcrowded either. Look how much equipment and how many operators they stuff in a Wedgetail and I want to say those things are smaller than the 738-based P-8s (I want to say the Wedgetails are -700 based frames).
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bikerthai
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Mon Mar 16, 2020 5:23 pm

SuperiorPilotMe wrote:
I cannot conceive how that can even be a factor.


The reasoning would be if they can put the mission equipment rack in the cargo hold, they can open up space for operators on the main deck.

Equipment rack in the cargo hold would need access in cases when they need to trouble shoot or manually deactivate equipment in order to continue with the mission.

For comparison VC-25A and B have accessible equipment rack in the lower lobe. A couple of inches less on the 767 would probably not make much of a difference.

With the 777 you can put rack in the crown similar to how they do the crew rest. That would not only open up floor space but will allow access without having to modify floor structure.

bt
Intelligent seeks knowledge. Enlightened seeks wisdom.
 
Buckeyetech
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Mon Mar 16, 2020 5:35 pm

Assuming that the follow-on to the E-4s will be used by SecDef for travel, what kind of provisions should he/she require? I can see the overall floor space requirement for their private room, at the least, maintaining the same area.
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rlwynn
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Mon Mar 16, 2020 9:26 pm

I can drive faster than you
 
rlwynn
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Thu Mar 19, 2020 9:20 am

If anybody watched the video I posted you can see how a 767 would just not fit in with how much space it looks like is needed.

That is all three levels of the 747 fully used.
I can drive faster than you
 
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bikerthai
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Re: USAF looking for an E-4B replacement

Thu Mar 19, 2020 1:26 pm

Dang those consoles are humongous. Heck if they are made of sheet metal, I can understand why they are spaced so wide.

The newer dual screen console that are thinner and lighter.

Also, with the P-8 they went away from the bunks and went with the sleeper seats. That should save some space if combined with the extra crew seats.

Also noticed in the back, there is a ton of operator interface that can probably combined in to single glass digital interface.

Yeah, a 767 might be a little tight, but a -300 or -400 could be doable

bt
Intelligent seeks knowledge. Enlightened seeks wisdom.

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