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ThePointblank
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Re: A330MRTT News, Orders, Production And Testing

Fri Sep 17, 2021 10:47 pm

It's official: Lockheed Martin is partnering with Airbus to offer the A330 MRTT as the Lockheed LMXT tanker:

https://www.defensenews.com/digital-sho ... mpetition/

WASHINGTON — Lockheed Martin on Friday unveiled the LMXT aerial refueling tanker, which will go head-to-head with Boeing’s incumbent KC-46 in the U.S. Air Force’s upcoming bridge tanker competition.

The LMXT is a variant of the Airbus A330 Multi Role Tanker Transport, modified specifically for U.S. Air Force operators. Changes include an upgraded suite of communications for joint all-domain command and control as well as improvements to range and fuel-offload capability.


Major changes being noted are a new open-architecture backbone that will allow new communication systems to plug in, as well as “a multi-domain operations node that connects the LMXT to the larger battlespace, increasing onboard situational awareness to provide resilient communications and datalink for assets across the force,” per the LM presser.

Otherwise, the LMXT will have Airbus' automated refueling system installed as standard, and the Airbus FBW boom.

LM has created a advertising page for their LMXT tanker here:

https://lockheedmartin.com/lmxt
 
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SeamanBeaumont
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Re: A330MRTT News, Orders, Production And Testing

Fri Sep 17, 2021 11:16 pm

ThePointblank wrote:
It's official: Lockheed Martin is partnering with Airbus to offer the A330 MRTT as the Lockheed LMXT tanker:

https://www.defensenews.com/digital-sho ... mpetition/

WASHINGTON — Lockheed Martin on Friday unveiled the LMXT aerial refueling tanker, which will go head-to-head with Boeing’s incumbent KC-46 in the U.S. Air Force’s upcoming bridge tanker competition.

The LMXT is a variant of the Airbus A330 Multi Role Tanker Transport, modified specifically for U.S. Air Force operators. Changes include an upgraded suite of communications for joint all-domain command and control as well as improvements to range and fuel-offload capability.


Major changes being noted are a new open-architecture backbone that will allow new communication systems to plug in, as well as “a multi-domain operations node that connects the LMXT to the larger battlespace, increasing onboard situational awareness to provide resilient communications and datalink for assets across the force,” per the LM presser.

Otherwise, the LMXT will have Airbus' automated refueling system installed as standard, and the Airbus FBW boom.

LM has created a advertising page for their LMXT tanker here:

https://lockheedmartin.com/lmxt

The laugh your arse off part of this is all the French and Germans now cheering for an LM win.
 
ThePointblank
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Re: A330MRTT News, Orders, Production And Testing

Fri Sep 17, 2021 11:17 pm

SeamanBeaumont wrote:
ThePointblank wrote:
It's official: Lockheed Martin is partnering with Airbus to offer the A330 MRTT as the Lockheed LMXT tanker:

https://www.defensenews.com/digital-sho ... mpetition/

WASHINGTON — Lockheed Martin on Friday unveiled the LMXT aerial refueling tanker, which will go head-to-head with Boeing’s incumbent KC-46 in the U.S. Air Force’s upcoming bridge tanker competition.

The LMXT is a variant of the Airbus A330 Multi Role Tanker Transport, modified specifically for U.S. Air Force operators. Changes include an upgraded suite of communications for joint all-domain command and control as well as improvements to range and fuel-offload capability.


Major changes being noted are a new open-architecture backbone that will allow new communication systems to plug in, as well as “a multi-domain operations node that connects the LMXT to the larger battlespace, increasing onboard situational awareness to provide resilient communications and datalink for assets across the force,” per the LM presser.

Otherwise, the LMXT will have Airbus' automated refueling system installed as standard, and the Airbus FBW boom.

LM has created a advertising page for their LMXT tanker here:

https://lockheedmartin.com/lmxt

The laugh your arse off part of this is all the French and Germans now cheering for an LM win.

It's likely that production of the LMXT tanker if LM wins would be moved to the US, probably at Airbus' Alabama facilities.
 
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Stitch
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Re: A330MRTT News, Orders, Production And Testing

Sat Sep 18, 2021 3:39 am

ThePointblank wrote:
It's likely that production of the LMXT tanker if LM wins would be moved to the US, probably at Airbus' Alabama facilities.


As I recall that was the plan under the original KC-45 proposal.

Still think the footprint of the A330 is going to hamper it in the selection process, just as it did under KC-X.
 
GDB
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Re: A330MRTT News, Orders, Production And Testing

Sat Sep 18, 2021 8:17 am

SeamanBeaumont wrote:
ThePointblank wrote:
It's official: Lockheed Martin is partnering with Airbus to offer the A330 MRTT as the Lockheed LMXT tanker:

https://www.defensenews.com/digital-sho ... mpetition/

WASHINGTON — Lockheed Martin on Friday unveiled the LMXT aerial refueling tanker, which will go head-to-head with Boeing’s incumbent KC-46 in the U.S. Air Force’s upcoming bridge tanker competition.

The LMXT is a variant of the Airbus A330 Multi Role Tanker Transport, modified specifically for U.S. Air Force operators. Changes include an upgraded suite of communications for joint all-domain command and control as well as improvements to range and fuel-offload capability.


Major changes being noted are a new open-architecture backbone that will allow new communication systems to plug in, as well as “a multi-domain operations node that connects the LMXT to the larger battlespace, increasing onboard situational awareness to provide resilient communications and datalink for assets across the force,” per the LM presser.

Otherwise, the LMXT will have Airbus' automated refueling system installed as standard, and the Airbus FBW boom.

LM has created a advertising page for their LMXT tanker here:

https://lockheedmartin.com/lmxt

The laugh your arse off part of this is all the French and Germans now cheering for an LM win.


Not as much as Airbus's French, German, British, Spanish at their civil division were when after Boeing's toadies on Capitol Hill overturned, rightly or not, the original tanker procurement, they had what they always wanted due to the broken ground and prep for the plant in Mobile. The thing Boeing's civil division least wanted, an Airbus plant for their A320 series in the US. Another dysfunction at Boeing, lack up joined up thinking?

Whether this bid will be like the last or not get picked at all, who knows? Though Boeing is likely to win again unlike last time they have a shitload of scandals, not just the poor record on the KC-46, all the rest, civil, military, space.
Their whole 'what do these mere Europeans know about airplanes especially tankers?' That will be a harder sell.
 
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SQ22
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Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sat Sep 18, 2021 8:21 am

As this topic deserves its own thread I have moved it out into a separate thread.

For A330MRTT general discussion please see:

A330MRTT News, Orders, Production And Testing
 
texl1649
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sat Sep 18, 2021 9:47 am

The funny thing about Lockheed claiming to offer an ‘open architecture’ solution is they also claimed ridiculous ‘proprietary’ software/computers for the F-35, including $3K per hour development costs they ‘independently invested’ to build.

https://nationalinterest.org/blog/penta ... ters-97201
 
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Grizzly410
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sat Sep 18, 2021 3:44 pm

What would be the worksharing there ? Does something like this would make sense ?

Airbus provides A330 sections to a new US FAL (in Mobile) and build green A330s
Lockheed design the military systems (comms, defense...), re-use Airbus Defense&Space boom system (pods too, I'd think), and perform the integration in their facility
 
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par13del
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sat Sep 18, 2021 3:57 pm

Why does the existing a/c need to be updated, we have posters talking about the existing a/c meeting and exceeding all requirements.
Is this a case of LM wanting to increase the cost of the purchase and thus make more money on the delays? The KC-46 was supposed to be a off the shelf purchase, between the Air Force and Boeing additions and subtractions, we have a a program that went off the rails.
So far we only had the initial replacement for Marine One cancelled, the current program seems to be progressing ok.
 
744SPX
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sat Sep 18, 2021 4:14 pm

Could the row with France over the subs play into this in terms of improving the A330's chances?
 
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SamYeager2016
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sat Sep 18, 2021 4:43 pm

744SPX wrote:
Could the row with France over the subs play into this in terms of improving the A330's chances?

Frankly I would imagine France throwing their toys out of the pram over their lost sub order would have zero effect on the result of the tanker order.
 
johns624
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sat Sep 18, 2021 5:16 pm

SamYeager2016 wrote:
744SPX wrote:
Could the row with France over the subs play into this in terms of improving the A330's chances?

Frankly I would imagine France throwing their toys out of the pram over their lost sub order would have zero effect on the result of the tanker order.
Especially since the Aussie subs have a very good chance of being a British design, anyways.
 
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keesje
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sat Sep 18, 2021 5:27 pm

It seems this aircraft will get a fuel capacity bump over the MRTT, 135t setting it apart from the KC46, 96t.

https://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone/4 ... nst-boeing
 
LightningZ71
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sat Sep 18, 2021 7:42 pm

So, do we think that Boeing just bids more of the same KC-46, a KC-46B with a larger fuel capacity, or do they bid something larger like a 777f based tanker/cargo hauler? No matter what, Boring has an advantage with the cargo door already being a factory item.
 
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par13del
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sat Sep 18, 2021 9:00 pm

If the KC-46 is refined / matured by then, offer up a 2 for 1, for every A330 they could get 2 KC-46's, dramatically increase the number of booms, using existing infrastructure with a/c already in inventory.
 
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Stitch
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sat Sep 18, 2021 9:09 pm

As a pure tanker, the A330MRTT is better because it 1) actually works as a tanker, and b) it can load more fuel. And the additional fuel the LMXT adds will help improve the usable ferry and loiter range of the plane. Since it lacks a dedicated cargo door like the KC-46, KC-10 and KC-135 it is not as effective a cargo transport (since it can carry significantly less pallets in it's hold than the KC-46A can on the main deck.

So maybe we'll see a mixed buy with the LMXT purchased as a tanker and troop transport and additional KC-46A ordered more for their cargo ability than tanking ability.
 
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ikolkyo
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sat Sep 18, 2021 10:51 pm

Would love it if Airbus wins this. An even bigger sign for Boeing to get their act together.
 
JayinKitsap
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sun Sep 19, 2021 3:49 am

What is really important is the required specifications and evaluation standards for the proposal. Things like the following need to be the primary scoring.

1. Costs, of course - beside for the purchase, the cost of sustainment, cost per flight hour, cost per gallon delivered.
2. A fair evaluation for quantity of fuel delivered at 5 hour flight time, also loiter time with 15,000 lb of fuel remaining. Total fuel lifted could be a penalty, if the burn rate is higher, it is delivered fuel.
3. What hardening is required, munitions, radars, electronics, etc. This is an area where the scope will rise significantly.
4. How will engine efficiency be addressed - could Boeing keep the current KC-46 engines and Airbus the MRTT engines. Both of these are at the end of their commercial life - it would be prudent to jump a generation - the GEnX and the 764 frame adjusted to length, the A339 RR engines for the MRTT.
5. Modelling scenarios to determine the number and times necessary to evaluate costs. Will 40 MRTT's cover the same scenario as 46 KC-46. That may show the larger plane is better.
6. Requirements for facilities to support the aircraft. The prior competition did look at this and it was a huge cost to build a whole host of larger hangers

The two planes are of different size, but how does it do accomplishing the mission and what is the total program cost.

The 'Buy American' requirements vary if it is NAVFAC, NAVSEA, NAVAIR, and similar for the Air Force and Coast Guard. The NAVFAC requirement is final assembly of the delivered article is to be in the US (Canada & Mexico too) and at least 50% of the parts by value are from the US. Off the shelf items from Qualifying Countries are acceptable on same standard. There are 26 QC - most of the EU, Australia, NZ, and Japan. Not Korea, China, and a whole bunch of other countries. It was some treaty signed back in the 60's I recall.

The way Airbus ships A320's to Mobile qualifies as being US Assembly. All of the European helo's have final assembly here. Siemens does railcar assembly in the US, with half of the parts used sourced in the QC signers. There are some twists and turns like on steel and aluminum.

Before anyone gets excited nearly every county has local source requirements in varying manner. I am just noting the current US requirements.
 
Flyglobal
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sun Sep 19, 2021 8:28 am

Stitch wrote:
As a pure tanker, the A330MRTT is better because it 1) actually works as a tanker, and b) it can load more fuel. And the additional fuel the LMXT adds will help improve the usable ferry and loiter range of the plane. Since it lacks a dedicated cargo door like the KC-46, KC-10 and KC-135 it is not as effective a cargo transport (since it can carry significantly less pallets in it's hold than the KC-46A can on the main deck.

So maybe we'll see a mixed buy with the LMXT purchased as a tanker and troop transport and additional KC-46A ordered more for their cargo ability than tanking ability.


I am not of deep knowledge of the MRTT, but from the base thinking: Using the A330F Cargo door, better the frame section with the door should be possible. Anyone here to know why this shouldn't be possible?
 
Max Q
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sun Sep 19, 2021 9:28 am

Still going to have the same problems as in the original competition, the very large wingspan on the Airbus makes it a problem to fit on a crowded ramp, not to mention the lack of a cargo door


If you’re going to buy a tanker that takes up that much space you might as well use a 777F which will carry a lot more fuel and has a cargo door with a reinforced floor
 
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zeke
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sun Sep 19, 2021 9:48 am

Flyglobal wrote:
I am not of deep knowledge of the MRTT, but from the base thinking: Using the A330F Cargo door, better the frame section with the door should be possible. Anyone here to know why this shouldn't be possible?


The French Air Force with their second order for the MRTT with a main deck cargo door. It is not like something they lack experience with, the German A310 MRTTs also had cargo doors.

“Unlike the Australian aircraft they will be equipped with the A330 Freighter’s main deck freight door, allowing them to be configured to carry up to 271 passengers, or an intensive care module for 10 stretcher patients plus 88 passengers, or freight. Another difference is Rolls-Royce Trent 700, rather than General Electric, engines.”


From https://australianaviation.com.au/2015/ ... rtt-order/
 
Flyglobal
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sun Sep 19, 2021 10:01 am

Will we see the LMXT at the end come with the GENX engine based on the 338 and 200F Cargo Flor and door?

This tanker or the MRTT derivatives crys for the AUS/UK/ US Pacific partnership as many in the Pacific countries have the MRTT anyways.

So the LMXT will be the tanker for the Pacific reagion, while the KC-46 will be where less distance is needed - US - europe and so.
 
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Francoflier
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sun Sep 19, 2021 10:55 am

The wingspan issue is a bit of a red herring IMO. The cargo door is also a non-issue as one is already available and in wide use on the 330.

At the end of the day, Airbus is still being used for the illusion of a 'fair competition' that will inevitably be given to Boeing...
You'd think they would have learned their lesson the first time around, or from the recent display of US disdain for their European strategic partners.

I don't have a problem with the US favoring a domestic provider for military procurement - that's what most nations do anyway - just don't make it a farcical political show, dragging foreign entities into it.
 
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keesje
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sun Sep 19, 2021 11:27 am

Of course the LMXT could include cargo / floor and new engines (of the shelve), beating KC46 at all fronts. But that could give the opponents the opportunity (again) move goalposts from capability to minimum cost preference.

So far MRTT buyers felt the 30-40t lowerdeck pallet capacity the MRTT offers, made the maindeck modifications unneccesary.

Wonder if GE will offer/finance a GENX option for the LMXT..

Probably Airbus/LM are developping a XLR like after wingbox fixed fuel tank to get tge addiitional capacity?

I think a strong background battle is going on, to get the USAF requirements "right", with the USAF having little to say (again)..
 
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bikerthai
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sun Sep 19, 2021 12:16 pm

Francoflier wrote:
just don't make it a farcical political show, dragging foreign entities into it.


Two late. Politics will force LM to bid, if only for show. If they don't, it will leave a mark for future competition. We here at a-net can see the nuance, but the general voting public will not.

bt
 
mxaxai
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sun Sep 19, 2021 12:33 pm

bikerthai wrote:
Francoflier wrote:
just don't make it a farcical political show, dragging foreign entities into it.


Two late. Politics will force LM to bid, if only for show. If they don't, it will leave a mark for future competition. We here at a-net can see the nuance, but the general voting public will not.

bt

LM could say that they have no suitable offer if they really think that it's a guaranteed Boeing win, especially considering that the LMXT is at its core still an Airbus product. There will likely be some requirement that the A330 cannot meet 100%, if they want an easy out.
 
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bikerthai
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sun Sep 19, 2021 1:11 pm

mxaxai wrote:
if they want an easy out.


Easy technically, but win or lose, the Polititans will want them to bid in order to use the bid for campaign fund raising (jobs and all).

We can all hope this could be a clean slate, but the media, social or other wise, will not allow it.

bt
 
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keesje
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sun Sep 19, 2021 3:54 pm

It will be interesting months coming..
 
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Aesma
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sun Sep 19, 2021 5:29 pm

I hope LM is footing the bill (and that it's a small bill).

There is still an incentive for Airbus, keeping Boeing honest, or even make them lose money.
 
744SPX
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sun Sep 19, 2021 6:53 pm

I really wish they would use the A338 for this.
 
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Kiwirob
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sun Sep 19, 2021 7:23 pm

Stitch wrote:
As a pure tanker, the A330MRTT is better because it 1) actually works as a tanker, and b) it can load more fuel. And the additional fuel the LMXT adds will help improve the usable ferry and loiter range of the plane. Since it lacks a dedicated cargo door like the KC-46, KC-10 and KC-135 it is not as effective a cargo transport (since it can carry significantly less pallets in it's hold than the KC-46A can on the main deck.

So maybe we'll see a mixed buy with the LMXT purchased as a tanker and troop transport and additional KC-46A ordered more for their cargo ability than tanking ability.


What about the the cargo door on the A330-200F, surely that's not a big item to retrofit?
 
texl1649
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sun Sep 19, 2021 7:55 pm

Kiwirob wrote:
Stitch wrote:
As a pure tanker, the A330MRTT is better because it 1) actually works as a tanker, and b) it can load more fuel. And the additional fuel the LMXT adds will help improve the usable ferry and loiter range of the plane. Since it lacks a dedicated cargo door like the KC-46, KC-10 and KC-135 it is not as effective a cargo transport (since it can carry significantly less pallets in it's hold than the KC-46A can on the main deck.

So maybe we'll see a mixed buy with the LMXT purchased as a tanker and troop transport and additional KC-46A ordered more for their cargo ability than tanking ability.


What about the the cargo door on the A330-200F, surely that's not a big item to retrofit?


I believe they’ve said (via the program manager) they have an ability to do that, and also the NEO engine option if any customer is willing to pay for that (meaning, in the price of the program). Essentially, not hard technically but not on the existing TC is the issue. How much more fuel can it really deliver though, vs. the smaller/lighter KC-46? That’s the biggest question.
 
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zeke
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Sun Sep 19, 2021 8:37 pm

texl1649 wrote:
How much more fuel can it really deliver though, vs. the smaller/lighter KC-46? That’s the biggest question.


Even the USAF has determined the A330 has a fair bit more capability, but the chose in the second round not to give points for that extra capability. The real runs on the board the A330 now has years of front line operational tanker sorties, they have been passing fuel via boom and drogue to aircraft large and small for many countries around the world.

Boeing has yet to deliver a single KC-46 that meets the specification contracted, it has yet to receive full operational capability. Meanwhile A330 tankers are being delivered to many different airforces around the world.
 
superbizzy73
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Mon Sep 20, 2021 6:12 pm

The KC-Y bid is just an excuse to buy more KC-46’s. Until there’s actually a LMXT in USAF colors operating out of a tanker base, you can’t convince me otherwise.
 
estorilm
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Mon Sep 20, 2021 8:13 pm

Grizzly410 wrote:
What would be the worksharing there ? Does something like this would make sense ?

Airbus provides A330 sections to a new US FAL (in Mobile) and build green A330s
Lockheed design the military systems (comms, defense...), re-use Airbus Defense&Space boom system (pods too, I'd think), and perform the integration in their facility

That's probably a reasonable assumption.

par13del wrote:
Why does the existing a/c need to be updated, we have posters talking about the existing a/c meeting and exceeding all requirements.
Is this a case of LM wanting to increase the cost of the purchase and thus make more money on the delays? The KC-46 was supposed to be a off the shelf purchase, between the Air Force and Boeing additions and subtractions, we have a a program that went off the rails.
So far we only had the initial replacement for Marine One cancelled, the current program seems to be progressing ok.


Exactly, because the existing a/c won the original competition in the KC-30, before Boeing cried foul. Many openly said it would be the LAST time Airbus ever attempted to compete for a US military contract (though under Northrup). Boeing launched a massive smear campaign to "keep jobs in the us" and "why are we giving them our money and our jobs?" etc etc. Some of the internet, radio, etc ads were downright nasty.

SO this time, it's not a French "program" - it's an American one. This time, it's got a big fancy US defense contractor name slapped on the side of it. As far as I know, Northrop was almost literally a smokescreen for the entire MRTT platform, which didn't fool too many people. Lockheed seems a bit more intent on integrating a few of their systems and newer (US-specific) technologies and requirements.

The fact that this base platform is ALREADY OPERATING (for quite a while) with similar systems in-place which Boeing can't get to work, should speak volumes towards their confidence of a winning bid. I think both the US Govt and its population have a different view on Boeing now, they don't OWE them a damn thing, they need to earn it.
 
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kitplane01
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Mon Sep 20, 2021 9:15 pm

bikerthai wrote:
Francoflier wrote:
just don't make it a farcical political show, dragging foreign entities into it.


Two late. Politics will force LM to bid, if only for show. If they don't, it will leave a mark for future competition. We here at a-net can see the nuance, but the general voting public will not.

bt


In what way will "politics force LM to bid"? Will senators call up and demand? Will the presidential chief of staff drop by LM headquarters?

Seriously, bidding costs many millions of $$$$. I don't know that a senator asking nicely can make LM spend that much money as a favor. I would think it would be easier and cheaper to make a senator happy by donating to his campaign or his superpac.
 
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Aesma
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Mon Sep 20, 2021 10:41 pm

Because LM wants to bid on many other programs for decades/centuries to come. And to keep Boeing honest.
 
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bikerthai
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Mon Sep 20, 2021 10:54 pm

kitplane01 wrote:
Will senators call up and demand? Will the presidential chief of staff drop by LM headquarters?

Seriously, bidding costs many millions of $$$$. I don't know that a senator asking nicely can make LM spend that much money as a favor.


Yes, they want the facade of a competition so they can use it on their campaign trail.

And yes I though that most request for proposal does come with some money to prepare the proposal. Or does the money only comes with a technical feasibility study?

Either way, I think the government is footing some of the bill. Each company also have some fund dedicated for proposal. Besides if it end up reducing the overall price of the winning bid, it will be worth the money. So we hope.

bt
 
ThePointblank
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Mon Sep 20, 2021 11:03 pm

Aesma wrote:
Because LM wants to bid on many other programs for decades/centuries to come. And to keep Boeing honest.

Lockheed Martin has historically bid on every available project as they have the technical expertise to do so.

It's when they decide NOT to bid is when eyebrows should be raised.
 
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kitplane01
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Tue Sep 21, 2021 4:25 am

bikerthai wrote:
kitplane01 wrote:
Will senators call up and demand? Will the presidential chief of staff drop by LM headquarters?

Seriously, bidding costs many millions of $$$$. I don't know that a senator asking nicely can make LM spend that much money as a favor.


Yes, they want the facade of a competition so they can use it on their campaign trail.

And yes I though that most request for proposal does come with some money to prepare the proposal. Or does the money only comes with a technical feasibility study?

Either way, I think the government is footing some of the bill. Each company also have some fund dedicated for proposal. Besides if it end up reducing the overall price of the winning bid, it will be worth the money. So we hope.

bt


Senators and the Pentagon want the illusion of a competition. But it's LM money that needs to be spent to create that illusion. How will senators and the pentagon induce LM to waste money that LM knows will not produce a win?

1) The Pentagon is *not* supposed to give LM a contract on some item in order to induce LM to bid on another item. I imagine that's a crime (but I'm not lawyer).

2) Senators can ask of LM anything they want, but it's probably easier to make a senator happy with a direct contribution to the campaign than to waste money on a loser bid.

So I ask again ... what's the mechanism that causes LM to waste money on this loser bid?

This might be a question beyond our ken .. none of us are politicians. But if I'm LM I'm not wasting $10M without some concrete and measurable benefit.

I know design studies can come with payments. But do bids come with payments for making the bids? I've NEVER heard that, but willing to be educated.
 
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kitplane01
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Tue Sep 21, 2021 4:26 am

ThePointblank wrote:
Aesma wrote:
Because LM wants to bid on many other programs for decades/centuries to come. And to keep Boeing honest.

Lockheed Martin has historically bid on every available project as they have the technical expertise to do so.

It's when they decide NOT to bid is when eyebrows should be raised.


Given what happened last time .. eyebrows should be raised.
 
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kitplane01
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Tue Sep 21, 2021 4:29 am

Aesma wrote:
Because LM wants to bid on many other programs for decades/centuries to come. And to keep Boeing honest.


Can you explain more? Why would LM lose the ability to bid on other projects if they don't bid on this one?
 
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Grizzly410
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Tue Sep 21, 2021 12:30 pm

keesje wrote:
This isn't about capability, quality, truth or track record. It's about perceptions. If I were Airbus I wouldn't even try. Boeing and its supply chain really need this order, lets not waste time.


If they just have to deliver a proven platform Airbus doesn't waste time and money, they're not taking any risk there, this is all for LM.

Worst case no contract and that's it.
Best case they sell 160 A330 and boom, build a new FAL.

I'd think Airbus Defense&Space division could be a bit annoyed though, they'll sell their refuel technology only to what could become a competitor ? (probably Airbus wants the LMXT limited for US AirForce bid, but if it becomes a thing I'm pretty sure LM will want to market it further).
 
FlapOperator
Posts: 448
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Tue Sep 21, 2021 1:45 pm

par13del wrote:
If the KC-46 is refined / matured by then, offer up a 2 for 1, for every A330 they could get 2 KC-46's, dramatically increase the number of booms, using existing infrastructure with a/c already in inventory.


Here is the answer.

The US needs booms, not higher offload.

A tanker that has better individual metrics (fuel uplift/bring-back, for example) for a military like Australia, Canada or France (that frankly will never buy or put enough tankers in one spot to have MOG consideration) makes TOTAL sense.

For a country like the US, that is looking at buying potentially 250 of these things, against their specific requirements (even if they were arrived at with some questionable factors) the assessments change. The US maintains lots of tanker bases, all of which have their existing facilities footprint.
 
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keesje
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Tue Sep 21, 2021 3:20 pm

FlapOperator wrote:
par13del wrote:
If the KC-46 is refined / matured by then, offer up a 2 for 1, for every A330 they could get 2 KC-46's, dramatically increase the number of booms, using existing infrastructure with a/c already in inventory.


Here is the answer.

The US needs booms, not higher offload.

A tanker that has better individual metrics (fuel uplift/bring-back, for example) for a military like Australia, Canada or France (that frankly will never buy or put enough tankers in one spot to have MOG consideration) makes TOTAL sense.

For a country like the US, that is looking at buying potentially 250 of these things, against their specific requirements (even if they were arrived at with some questionable factors) the assessments change. The US maintains lots of tanker bases, all of which have their existing facilities footprint.


If the Pacific, China becomes more urgent, 40t extra fuel seems more bang for the buck, replacing KC-10s, going places, getting the job done. But I could be wrong, maybe it will about the number of (not perse automatic) booms this time.

LM deciding to assembly the LMXT in the Seattle area because of resources, skilled workers, long term strategy could be an interesting move IMO.
 
texl1649
Posts: 1963
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Tue Sep 21, 2021 3:33 pm

Reminder, we had a thread where people got very passionate/political about this requirement a few months ago. Some good data there though before it was locked.

viewtopic.php?p=22862029#p22861729
 
texl1649
Posts: 1963
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Tue Sep 21, 2021 3:40 pm

Per reply 164 in the above linked thread;

The 767 is more efficient per kg of payload compared to the A330. This is why the 767 is the world's favourite freighter.

Let's calculate efficiency per kg of payload.
KC-46
OEW: 82t
MTOW: 188t
Available fuel plus payload: 106t

A330 MRTT
OEW: 125t
MTOW: 235t
Available fuel plus payload: 110t

Now the A330 MRTT carries only 4% more fuel plus payload. Yet is taking off 25% heavier. Flying that much heavier it will be burning way more than 4% more fuel per hour. The A330 is burning more fuel per kg of payload. Now the reasons are very obvious to an aerospace engineer.

The reason why Airbus wouldn't use the A330-300 instead of the A330-200 as the tanker is no doubt easy for you and keesje to understand. The extra structural weight of the larger cabin subtracts from the remaining fuel/payload making it in inferior tanker. The same reason why the 777 freighter uses the shorter -200 length.

Now the A330-200 has 48% more cabin area than the 767-200. 237m2 versus 160m2. The KC-46 fits a tiny fuselage to reduce empty weight and maximize fuel capacity. So to theoretically match the KC-46 the Airbus model would need a smaller fuselage with only 25% more cabin area than the KC-46 to match the 25% higher MTOW. The problem with this is the even the A300 has 34% more cabin area than the KC-46. 160m2 versus 215m2

The core problem is the large diameter cross section makes it a poor tanker. That's why the KC-135 has a fuselage smaller than the A321. You can fit 40t of fuel into less space than 40t of passengers. The A330 is more efficient per square meter of cabin area. That is why it outsold the 767 as a passenger plane.


At 6,000nm the smaller and lighter KC-46 now has more fuel.


Also;

viewtopic.php?f=10&t=1461901&start=200#p22868613
 
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bikerthai
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Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Tue Sep 21, 2021 4:30 pm

kitplane01 wrote:
Can you explain more? Why would LM lose the ability to bid on other projects if they don't bid on this one?


It's not a matter of not being able to bid on other project. It is a matter of being able to effectively lobby Congress (which or better or worst is still legal).

You provide the bid to allow a member of congress to use in local election campaigning, you get better access favor from that member. Not saying that this is the case here, but it is a possibility.

keesje wrote:
LM deciding to assembly the LMXT in the Seattle area because of resources, skilled workers, long term strategy could be an interesting move IMO.


Not going to happen. Property price is too high to set up a new mod facility. Getting into a bidding war for experienced labor in such a market is a no win situation.

A more friendly location like Missouri is more of a possibility.

Note other than the KC-46 and P-8A which rely on in-line production continuity (including local Engineering traveling from one facility to the other), all other Boeing mod work is done in OKC or San Antonio.

If the US Airforce ever decide to buy some E-7, the mod work for those frames will probably be in OKC or San Antonio as well.

bt
Last edited by bikerthai on Tue Sep 21, 2021 4:38 pm, edited 2 times in total.
 
texl1649
Posts: 1963
Joined: Thu Aug 02, 2007 5:38 am

Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Tue Sep 21, 2021 4:35 pm

Quick question; what was the last Lockheed aircraft for the USAF that came in on time/cost/met performance goals within 5 years of IOC. The F-104 (not really in USAF service)? C-130, U-2?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Lockheed_aircraft
 
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bikerthai
Posts: 4334
Joined: Wed Apr 28, 2010 1:45 pm

Re: Lockheed reveals new LMXT refueling tanker

Tue Sep 21, 2021 5:00 pm

Maybe the F-117 because being over budget on a black project is not really being over budget?

bt

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