C-17s for the IAF?

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby srai » 05 Nov 2009 04:43

Anantz wrote:...
I agree with Aditya, the IAF wants C-17 to complement the IL-76 fleet in service, to increase the IAF, airlift capability.


I don't think this is true. Initially, there maybe an overlap as the IL-76s are slowly phased out. But by the end of next decade (2020), IAF's strategic lift fleet will only comprise of C-17s.

There are only 15 IL-76s left in the IAF as of today, and by the time a C-17 deal gets done and inducted into the IAF, the IL-76 will be ready for retirement. The other way to look at is that the planned 10 C-17 will give about equal payload lift capacity as the 20 or so IL-76s IAF had in the past for its strategic lift capability.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Brando » 05 Nov 2009 07:32

srai wrote:There are only 15 IL-76s left in the IAF as of today, and by the time a C-17 deal gets done and inducted into the IAF, the IL-76 will be ready for retirement. The other way to look at is that the planned 10 C-17 will give about equal payload lift capacity as the 20 or so IL-76s IAF had in the past for its strategic lift capability.


Actually tonnage wise, the 10 C17's would equal the lift capacity of only about 15-16 Il-76's while cost wise they would equal 50 Il-76's.

Should spares become more freely available in the future for the Il-76's there is no reason why they wouldn't be able to complement the C17's (which could be relegated to transporting out-sized cargo or ferrying cargo to short unprepared airfields at the borders) in strategic airlift.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby srai » 05 Nov 2009 15:50

Brando wrote:
srai wrote:There are only 15 IL-76s left in the IAF as of today, and by the time a C-17 deal gets done and inducted into the IAF, the IL-76 will be ready for retirement. ...


...

Should spares become more freely available in the future for the Il-76's there is no reason why they wouldn't be able to complement the C17's (which could be relegated to transporting out-sized cargo or ferrying cargo to short unprepared airfields at the borders) in strategic airlift.


By 2020, the oldest of the IAF's IL-76s (first units inducted around 1985) would be 35 years old. I don't know exactly how old the current 15 IL-76s will be by 2020 but probably between 25-35 years old. So yes there will be an overlap between C-17 and IL-76 over the next decade but not much beyond that ... unless the IAF decides to do an extensive overhaul of its 15 IL-76s in its service that is. If this overhaul doesn't happen, then it is most likely these 15 IL-76s will be retired around 2020 (plus/minus 3 years).

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Singha » 05 Nov 2009 18:52

is there any knowlege of downtime per flight hr of C17 vs IL76 ?

my expectation of such a costly plane would be it should match the
commercial 737 type airliners who fly 15-20 hrs every day with perhaps a day of downtime in a fortnight for more extensive checks.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Cybaru » 05 Nov 2009 22:16

Singha wrote:is there any knowlege of downtime per flight hr of C17 vs IL76 ?

my expectation of such a costly plane would be it should match the
commercial 737 type airliners who fly 15-20 hrs every day with perhaps a day of downtime in a fortnight for more extensive checks.


I spoke load-master or whoever that is sometime ago and he really hated that the downtime required between missions was very high.

He preferred the older gen planes compared to the new ones. He has been working this C-17 for about 3 years now. He worked on C-130 and C-141 before and he much preferred both those over this specimen.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Manish_Sharma » 05 Nov 2009 23:24

Cybaru wrote:
Singha wrote:is there any knowlege of downtime per flight hr of C17 vs IL76 ?

my expectation of such a costly plane would be it should match the
commercial 737 type airliners who fly 15-20 hrs every day with perhaps a day of downtime in a fortnight for more extensive checks.


I spoke load-master or whoever that is sometime ago and he really hated that the downtime required between missions was very high.

He preferred the older gen planes compared to the new ones. He has been working this C-17 for about 3 years now. He worked on C-130 and C-141 before and he much preferred both those over this specimen.

:shock: And this is the plane IAF wants for 5 times the price of IL 76?

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby srai » 06 Nov 2009 01:57

srai wrote:
Brando wrote:quote="srai"...
There are only 15 IL-76s left in the IAF as of today, and by the time a C-17 deal gets done and inducted into the IAF, the IL-76 will be ready for retirement. ...quote

...

Should spares become more freely available in the future for the Il-76's there is no reason why they wouldn't be able to complement the C17's (which could be relegated to transporting out-sized cargo or ferrying cargo to short unprepared airfields at the borders) in strategic airlift.


By 2020, the oldest of the IAF's IL-76s (first units inducted around 1985) would be 35 years old. I don't know exactly how old the current 15 IL-76s will be by 2020 but probably between 25-35 years old. So yes there will be an overlap between C-17 and IL-76 over the next decade but not much beyond that ... unless the IAF decides to do an extensive overhaul of its 15 IL-76s in its service that is. If this overhaul doesn't happen, then it is most likely these 15 IL-76s will be retired around 2020 (plus/minus 3 years).


To add to this, C-17s won't be entering into IAF service until after 2015 when factoring the time it takes to negotiate/ink a deal, 3 year production start time, and couple of years it takes to reach FOC. Plus, first batch of MTAs will be coming online sometime after 2017 with its 20ton payload capacity. So MTAs will provide bulk of the airlift post 2020 and they will compliment the C-17s, which will provide the heavy strategic lift.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby GeorgeWelch » 06 Nov 2009 02:49

srai wrote:To add to this, C-17s won't be entering into IAF service until after 2015 when factoring the time it takes to negotiate/ink a deal, 3 year production start time, and couple of years it takes to reach FOC.



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C-17_Globemaster_III

In July 2006 a fixed price contract was awarded to Boeing to deliver four C-17s

. . .

The Royal Australian Air Force took delivery of its first C-17 in a ceremony at Boeing's plant at Long Beach, California on 29 November 2006.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby srai » 06 Nov 2009 03:00

GeorgeWelch wrote:
srai wrote:To add to this, C-17s won't be entering into IAF service until after 2015 when factoring the time it takes to negotiate/ink a deal, 3 year production start time, and couple of years it takes to reach FOC.



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C-17_Globemaster_III

In July 2006 a fixed price contract was awarded to Boeing to deliver four C-17s

. . .

The Royal Australian Air Force took delivery of its first C-17 in a ceremony at Boeing's plant at Long Beach, California on 29 November 2006.


From the same source,
...
The aircraft for the RAAF were ordered directly from the USAF production run, and are identical to American C-17 even in paint scheme, the only difference being the national markings. This allowed delivery to commence within nine months of commitment to the program
...

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby GeorgeWelch » 06 Nov 2009 03:06

srai wrote:From the same source,
...
The aircraft for the RAAF were ordered directly from the USAF production run, and are identical to American C-17 even in paint scheme, the only difference being the national markings. This allowed delivery to commence within nine months of commitment to the program
...


The US would be more than happy to defer deliveries of the C-17 and let you jump in line.

As far as modification, it's a cargo plane, not a fighter. How much customization do you really need?

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Prem Kumar » 06 Nov 2009 03:49

NRao wrote:1000 Km range perhaps is meant fro the other border.


Yep - the Harop and possibly the air launched Brahmos seem to be a counter to our northern neighbors' S-300 systems. That's why I would be very curious to know of any Harop vs S-300 performance results. S-300 systems are not cheap either - a $1M missile would be worth it if it can reliably take out the engagement radar.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Brando » 06 Nov 2009 03:53

**Double Post-**

Mods-Please delete.
Last edited by Brando on 06 Nov 2009 04:12, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Shalav » 06 Nov 2009 04:02

@GeorgeWelch

I guess you **really** don't know the IAF then. :D

Here are a few I can think of

1. Full load operation from Hot and High very different from US reqs.
2. Instrumentation (maybe)
3. chai makers instead of coffee makers
4. etc... etc... etc...

But humour aside, we need to ask what is the advantage the C17 has over a new build IL-76? The IAF just spent a billion $$$ on 6 C-130J's and now they want to spend 5x the cost for C-17's of load-equivalent IL-76's!

Furthermore they would have to discard all their IL-76 maintenance equipment and spares for a new set of 5x more costly maintenance equipment and spares. Who pays for this?

They really haven't explained the thinking behind this. Is it just because they can and we have the money to do so? Why waste money on equipment which will reach end-of-life replacement stage about the same time as the IL-76? What is real advantage of the C-17 over the IL-76?

More importantly The US still has laws in place which can stop supplies of spares and replacements at their discretion. ie the dreaded sanctions. Notwithstanding all the bonhomie between the US and India, that is a big shadow over every piece of equipment and EVERY nut or bolt purchased from the US. The US is quite capable of stopping supplies in times of war if they don't like what we are doing. This is not free stuff we are getting, we are paying 'retail prices' for all this equipment - ALL of which are subject to US sanctions under their laws.

I just do not understand why the IAF is letting such strategic considerations take a backseat to "best of brochure" happy-talk of US companies? What's the advantage of that?

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Brando » 06 Nov 2009 04:11

Singha wrote:
my expectation of such a costly plane would be it should match the
commercial 737 type airliners who fly 15-20 hrs every day with perhaps a day of downtime in a fortnight for more extensive checks.


In fact the C17 is much worse than even a commercial 747 Cargo with respect to payload vs range. Apparently despite is mediocre money values its short unprepared airfield landing ability and low ramp access make it deserve its additional costs according to Boeing! Even the wealthiest airforce the USAF, stopped further orders after 180 aircraft because the C17 was so expensive. Instead they tried to sell the aircraft to allies just to keep the production line running and prevent Boeing from shutting down the plant.Source Now they want to sell one of the most expensive cargo aircraft to a developing country like India ??

The main backbone of the USAF strategic airlift is NOT the C17 but the rather the C-5 Super Galaxy that they recently upgraded with a glass cockpit, better engines etc to the C-5M standard saving the US taxpayer $20 billion in the long run! Source The C17 in comparison to C-5 is not only much more costlier but carries about 100,000 lbs less payload and uses more fuel for almost equal range.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby GeorgeWelch » 06 Nov 2009 05:05

Shalav wrote:we need to ask what is the advantage the C17 has over a new build IL-76?


Well the IAF has lots of experience with the Il-76 yet they aren't looking to buy more. Perhaps you should ask them?

Shalav wrote:The IAF just spent a billion $$$ on 6 C-130J's


The C-130s were special-ops birds with specialized equipment, not plain transports.

Shalav wrote:and now they want to spend 5x the cost for C-17's of load-equivalent IL-76's!


I don't believe those numbers are accurate.

Shalav wrote:Furthermore they would have to discard all their IL-76 maintenance equipment and spares


I'm missing where you have to 'discard' anything.

The C-17 and Il-76 would operate side-by-side for several years.


Shalav wrote:EVERY nut or bolt purchased from the US


There is nothing particularly fancy about the C-17, it is truly nuts and bolts. In other words, there's nothing India couldn't either source elsewhere or make themselves if they had to.


Brando wrote:In fact the C17 is much worse than even a commercial 747 Cargo with respect to payload vs range. Apparently despite is mediocre money values its short unprepared airfield landing ability and low ramp access make it deserve its additional costs according to Boeing!


Um, EVERY military transport is like this. The high wing configuration isn't aerodynamically efficient, but it allows an unobstructed cargo box and keeps the body close to the ground so cargo can be loaded without specialized equipment. The floor beams are MASSIVE to support driving a tank directly onto it. Try doing that on a 747. It sacrifices cruise efficiency for better short-field performance. The extra landing gear allow landing on soft surfaces but also add lots of weight to the aircraft. All sorts of tradeoffs are made to make it a better MILITARY transport.

That's why the US uses CRAF (civilian airliner contractors) to move pallets to big airfields and C-17s and C-5s to move outsize cargo and go where civilians can't.

No, a C-17 will never be as efficient as a 747 at hauling pallets. But likewise a 747 will never land a tank on a dirt strip.

Different jobs call for different planes.

Brando wrote:Even the wealthiest airforce the USAF, stopped further orders after 180 aircraft because the C17 was so expensive.


:roll:

The original plan was for only 120 C-17s. But they liked it so much, they kept ordering more. Now they feel they have met and more than met their current and future transport requirements and would like to use the money in other places (like say the F-35), but certain members of Congress have become so invested in it as jobs program they won't let it die even though the USAF has no need for more.

Original plan: 120
Current: 222 and counting

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Cybaru » 06 Nov 2009 06:21

c-17 .. is a political save jobs campaign ..

"C-17's parts from 650 suppliers in 44 states. So it's unsurprising that the Senate shot down McCain's effort to pare down the program this week by a 2-1 margin. " They are still trying to save 5000 jobs at Boeing, by keeping it running. They even made extras hoping some sucker would buy them.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby GeorgeWelch » 06 Nov 2009 06:35

Cybaru wrote:c-17 .. is a political save jobs campaign ..


And how is that any different from any other military sales campaign?

Every government pushes their defense industry's products to 'save jobs' at home.

Cybaru wrote:They even made extras hoping some sucker would buy them.


No, they ordered extras to keep the line running. Period. If others want to buy some, great. But even if it was GUARANTEED that there would be no foreign orders, they would still keep the line going.

The Congress critters pushing this only care about the jobs in their districts, so whether it's US orders or foreign orders doesn't matter to them as long as they keep coming.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Brando » 06 Nov 2009 06:55

GeorgeWelch wrote:There is nothing particularly fancy about the C-17, it is truly nuts and bolts. In other words, there's nothing India couldn't either source elsewhere or make themselves if they had to.

Except that the C17 is the most software intensive cargo aircraft ever and its Pratt and Whitney engines are not going to be as easily sourced should they need to be replaced or retooled.
http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/ ... istory.htm
McDonnell Douglas subcontracted a majority of software for the C-17 to subcontractors and suppliers. During this process Douglas did not specify a specific computer language, which resulted in software for the C-17 in almost every known language of the time. Integration of the software was a nightmare that GAO said resulted in "...the most computerized, software-intensive aircraft ever built, relying on 19 different embedded computers incorporating more than 80 microprocessors and about 1.3 million lines of code" (Hopkins and De Keyrel, 1993). The final software release was in September, 1994 with upgrades through March 1995.


GeorgeWelch wrote:Um, EVERY military transport is like this.

Every military transport is NOT as costly like the C17!
GeorgeWelch wrote: The high wing configuration isn't aerodynamically efficient, but it allows an unobstructed cargo box and keeps the body close to the ground so cargo can be loaded without specialized equipment. The floor beams are MASSIVE to support driving a tank directly onto it. Try doing that on a 747.

What does the wing's position have to do with cargo compartment in the fuselage ? Its not like by having the wings lower, it would necessarily obstruct the rear ramp access. As to keeping the fuselage closer to the ground- that again has nothing to do with the position of the wings, rather, it has to do with the position of the engines. If the engines were say to be placed above the wing or around the fuselage, there is no reason, the wings couldn't be brought down lower to exploit greater lift.
It is possible to transport a tank on a 747, "Massive beams" not withstanding. The problem however is getting the tank into the fuselage and getting it out at the destination! The true difference between the 747-400 cargo aircraft with that of a military cargo aircraft would be the need of specialized loading and unloading equipment required to load the aircraft in case of 747-400 cargo. Even with new 747 LCF, loading and unloading are not nearly as efficient as in a C17 or a C5.
GeorgeWelch wrote: It sacrifices cruise efficiency for better short-field performance. The extra landing gear allow landing on soft surfaces but also add lots of weight to the aircraft. All sorts of tradeoffs are made to make it a better MILITARY transport.

Well that is exactly the center of contention! The fact that it really isnt a "better" military transport for its price. Some of the performance problems the C17 had during its development show that it is not nearly as versatile on short unprepared airfields as it alludes to. On wet runways, it requires almost 5000 ft to come to a full stop and it has a much higher Load Classification Number meaning that not ALL short unprepared airfields can handle a fully loaded C17 vs say a C130 .


GeorgeWelch wrote: :roll:

The original plan was for only 120 C-17s. But they liked it so much, they kept ordering more.

Apparently Boeing has a very proficient and capable marketing team that they can sell a distorted history!

In April 1990, Defense Secretary Cheney reduced the projected buy from 210 to 120 planes...............A January 1995 GAO report revealed that while the original C-17 budget was US$41.8 billion for 210 aircraft, the 120 aircraft already ordered at that point had already cost US$39.5 billion.[13]


^^Thats a quote from the wiki article on the C17. It's not that they liked it so much but that they could afford only 120 at the time and later due to pressure from the Republicans when Bush and Cheney were in office they continued to buy more and more aircraft as McDonald Douglas was sold to Boeing.
GeorgeWelch wrote: Now they feel they have met and more than met their current and future transport requirements and would like to use the money in other places

Well thats an awfully polite way of saying "Thanks but no thanks!" considering that they've been slowly purchasing C17's a dozen or so each time for the AF "reserve" and various national Guard units. I imagine they'd like to use their money in other places say, to upgrade the C-5A's for example- an aircraft can carries twice as much just as far and costs much less! See page 10

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby jai » 06 Nov 2009 07:45

If our need is to be able to land tanks and oversized equipment, and if IAF is willing to spend so much, why not go for C-5 Super Galaxy or AN 124 ?

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Patrick Cusack » 06 Nov 2009 08:31

India Seeks To Bolster Transport With 10 C-17s
By vivek raghuvanshi
Published: 5 Nov 2009 17:07
Print Print | Print Email

NEW DELHI - The Indian Defence Ministry is negotiating the purchase of C-17 heavy-lift Globemaster aircraft from the United States through the Foreign Military Sales (FMS) route, say ministry sources.

reported on http://www.defensenews.com

This is really silly - why would you spend money on something that is clearly too much money.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Singha » 06 Nov 2009 08:33

afair the C-5 (pre upgrade) variety needed a lot of TLC to up and running. dont know how the
upg changed things - if they were re-engined to a new engine and avionics, should be better.

the Hercules is probably the Dakota of this age - will go anywhere and do anything within some wide limit.

is the AN124 in full rate production? I kind of have doubts if many airports in india will be
able to operate it though....many are not even sized for A330/767 weight.

the wing is kept high so the wing support box is in the roof of the fuselage and the cargo
hold has a long and clear floor. for same reason wheel gear is pushed out into canoe fairings outside the main fuselage.

also the engines had better be high up for operating from unpaved and austere runways.

no denying the utility of dedicated mil transports, but if we look at our fwd strips like
DBO, Fukche, Chushul....onlee MTA/AN32 might operate from there, maybe C130. definitely not IL76 or C17 sized.

considering the airports where C17 and IL76 do fly into like Leh or Dibrugarh, palletized
cargo can be hauled in by A310-330 sized frieghters having much better uptime and range.

its onlee in moving armour, vehicles and artillery that mil transports have a distinct advantage in Indian env. but this is not some resupply mission to bantustan holding platoon, we need masses of stuff and we dont have the kind of numbers USAF can put together, so usually we just move such bulky and oblong items by road and rail.

hence I will strongly pretend to be an expert and claim in Indian Environment, we dont
need too many LARGE mil transports. imo we need
- huge numbers of tactical transports of C130/MTA/AN32 type
- huge nos of high uptime/low cost per mile A330-A321 sized freighters
- limited number of big mil transports for SF/high value/urgent eqpt for rushing stuff quickly
Last edited by Singha on 06 Nov 2009 08:40, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Surya » 06 Nov 2009 08:33

Sigh

The C 5 and AN 124 are outsized aircraft and not suitable for everyday tasks

can operate only from certain airfields and high operating costs

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby negi » 06 Nov 2009 08:44

I have always believed money has never been an issue as far as arms procurement goes in India (it might be projected as an ostensible reason though) ; for some weird reason deals involving Unkil specially under single vendor negotiations go through pretty fast . And then we have IA and IAF still waiting for their ARTY and MRCA . :roll:

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Surya » 06 Nov 2009 09:04

True negi

At this point I can live with 1000 M 198s and 500 M 109s if it goes through FMS

We need thousands of 155 mm guns yesterday :((

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby D Roy » 06 Nov 2009 10:08

The short field capability of the C-17 is unmatched.
it can take off from 3000 more airfields worldwide than the C-5 galaxy.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Patrick Cusack » 06 Nov 2009 10:11

How about compare the following for c-17 and IL-76
1) short field takeoff capability
2) turn around capability
3) load carrying
4) battlefield survivability

India should have procured say 25 to 30 of battle proven c-130 - that seriously makes sense.

advantage - avionics upgrade from Israel.
engines - RR
airframe - Israel

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby GeorgeWelch » 06 Nov 2009 10:48

Brando wrote:
GeorgeWelch wrote:There is nothing particularly fancy about the C-17, it is truly nuts and bolts. In other words, there's nothing India couldn't either source elsewhere or make themselves if they had to.

Except that the C17 is the most software intensive cargo aircraft ever


But you would already have the software, so what exactly would be embargoed?

Brando wrote:and its Pratt and Whitney engines are not going to be as easily sourced should they need to be replaced or retooled.


It's basically the same engine that powers the 757 so parts have to be made available for the civilian market and thus cannot be embargoed.

Brando wrote:What does the wing's position have to do with cargo compartment in the fuselage ?


In what you would consider a 'traditional' low wing design like any modern airliner, the wing box actually splits the fuselage into 2 compartments. Basically you sit on top of the wing and the luggage goes UNDER the wing. In a high wing design like the C-17 or Il-76, the wing sits entirely above the fuselage thus leaving it as a single usable space.

Brando wrote:If the engines were say to be placed above the wing or around the fuselage, there is no reason, the wings couldn't be brought down lower to exploit greater lift.


Even if a low-wing design didn't impinge on the cargo hold (and it does), mounting the engines above the wing is a bad idea because it increases maintenance costs as it makes the engines harder to get to and requires more specialized equipment to get them on and off the wing.

Brando wrote:Well that is exactly the center of contention! The fact that it really isnt a "better" military transport for its price.


Then why did you compare it to a commercial 747? Saying it's bad because it's not as efficient as a 747 is nonsensical.


Brando wrote:It is possible to transport a tank on a 747 "Massive beams" not withstanding.


So the floor of the C-17 is just for show? It has no purpose?

Transporting a tank on a 747 may be possible, but it would require extensive engineering to create a pallet or support structure that would evenly distribute the load.

It certainly wouldn't be a 'drive-on' experience like with the C-17.

And even then it couldn't land on a dirt strip.

Are you seriously arguing that the 747 is a better military transport?

Brando wrote:Some of the performance problems the C17 had during its development show that it is not nearly as versatile on short unprepared airfields as it alludes to.


Whatever 'problems' it has, it does routinely operate from dirt runways in both Iraq and Afghanistan.

Brando wrote:meaning that not ALL short unprepared airfields can handle a fully loaded C17 vs say a C130.


Um, no kidding. The C-130 is a significantly smaller plane, of course it would be able to land at even more runways. However you were comparing it to the 747, and yes, the C-17 can land at significantly more runways than a 747.


Brando wrote:
GeorgeWelch wrote: :roll:

The original plan was for only 120 C-17s. But they liked it so much, they kept ordering more.

Apparently Boeing has a very proficient and capable marketing team that they can sell a distorted history!

In April 1990, Defense Secretary Cheney reduced the projected buy from 210 to 120 planes...............A January 1995 GAO report revealed that while the original C-17 budget was US$41.8 billion for 210 aircraft, the 120 aircraft already ordered at that point had already cost US$39.5 billion.[13]


If you note, that was before the first C-17 even flew. When the time came to actually purchase the plane, the plan was for 120.

However, even if you want to go for 210, current orders now exceed even that and have no end in sight. So your argument that it is too expensive for even the richest airforce doesn't hold water.

Brando wrote:
GeorgeWelch wrote: Now they feel they have met and more than met their current and future transport requirements and would like to use the money in other places

Well thats an awfully polite way of saying "Thanks but no thanks!" considering that they've been slowly purchasing C17's a dozen or so each time for the AF "reserve" and various national Guard units.


If they get more of them, they'll find a use for them, but more C-17s is certainly NOT a priority for the USAF.

Brando wrote:I imagine they'd like to use their money in other places say, to upgrade the C-5A's for example- an aircraft can carries twice as much just as far and costs much less!


Yes, one of the ways Congress critters are trying to justify the unjustifiable (more C-17s) is to kill the C-5M program. Eliminate the C-5M and suddenly there is a whole lot more cargo capacity that is needed and thus more C-17s.

However, it isn't quite so black and white. The C-5, even after the C-5M upgrade, is a horribly unreliable beast. It is not uncommon for aircraft to be on the ground for MONTHS at a time.

If you send a C-5 to do a job, you never know when it will get there or when it will get back plus you'll likely need a spare to carry a critical part out to some forsaken outpost where it broke down.

This makes trying to deliver time-critical supplies a logistical nightmare.

In the meantime the C-17 quietly GETS THE JOB DONE.

There is a lot to be said for simply working.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby GeorgeWelch » 06 Nov 2009 10:57

jai wrote:If our need is to be able to land tanks and oversized equipment, and if IAF is willing to spend so much, why not go for C-5 Super Galaxy or AN 124 ?


The C-5 is not in production and never will be again.

The An-124 isn't in production, and while there has been talk of restarting the line, nothing has come of it yet. Thus there would be a lot of expense and risk with restarting a line compared to jumping in the currently working C-17 line.

And that's just to get the old model.

Significant development work would be needed for modernized engines and avionics, meaning more money and risk and time.

Then of course there is the issue that Surya mentioned that they are both rather huge aircraft and aren't really suitable for the semi-tactical uses the C-17 can be put to.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby GeorgeWelch » 06 Nov 2009 11:20

Patrick Cusack wrote:How about compare the following for c-17 and IL-76
1) short field takeoff capability
2) turn around capability


No idea, except I do know the C-17 has been very reliable for the USAF (because when your plane breaks, it affects turn around time)

Patrick Cusack wrote:3) load carrying


Well the Il-76 is obviously a smaller plane, so there are some things it will never do (like carry a T90). However if you decide you don't need to ship such outsize cargo by air, then . . .

Patrick Cusack wrote:4) battlefield survivability


I don't know how the Il-76 does, but a C-17 took a SAM hit that blew up an engine and returned safely to base. Plus they now come with DIRCM to reduce the likelihood of such incidents.

Not to mention that with all the heavy usage the C-17 has seen in hostile areas, ZERO have been written off.

So it would seem decently survivable.

Patrick Cusack wrote:India should have procured say 25 to 30 of battle proven c-130 - that seriously makes sense.


The C-130 and the C-17 are in completely different classes that serve completely different needs. This is why the US, the UK, Canada and Australia all operate BOTH the C-130 and C-17. Saying you should get one has basically zero impact on whether you should get the other.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Rahul M » 06 Nov 2009 14:24

Patrick Cusack wrote:India should have procured say 25 to 30 of battle proven c-130 - that seriously makes sense.

and introduce yet another type into the mix ? of the same category as the MTA ?
sorry, doesn't make sense.
advantage - avionics upgrade from Israel.
engines - RR
airframe - Israel

what is this about ?

-----------------
I wonder if it will not be a good idea to get a more modern version of the IL-76 with the PS-90A engines and modern electronics, something they call the IL-476 http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/ ... il-476.htm

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Venu » 06 Nov 2009 14:42

Even though I am not very happy on IAF buying C-17's, there aren't many alternatives. Besides, George' argument is very convincing.

Anyway, only time will tell how committed the US are this time around.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby karan_mc » 06 Nov 2009 14:51

Rahul M wrote:
Patrick Cusack wrote:India should have procured say 25 to 30 of battle proven c-130 - that seriously makes sense.

and introduce yet another type into the mix ? of the same category as the MTA ?
sorry, doesn't make sense.
advantage - avionics upgrade from Israel.
engines - RR
airframe - Israel

what is this about ?

-----------------
I wonder if it will not be a good idea to get a more modern version of the IL-76 with the PS-90A engines and modern electronics, something they call the IL-476 http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/ ... il-476.htm


il-476 has still not taken to air yet i am not sure but it will be using older non used airframes and not completely new built airframes i may be wrong about this ,here is the image of what American and Russian fleet will look in 2015

Image

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby ashkrishna » 06 Nov 2009 15:29

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Sukhoi-jets-in-NE-skies-from-next-week/articleshow/5202979.cms

Sukhoi jets in NE skies from next week

TEZPUR: Sukhoi fighter jets will start flying in the skies of the northeastern region from next
week.

According to defence officials, around six aircraft of the warplane's MKI variant have reached Tezpur air base in Assam a few days ago and a full complement of the warplanes is expected to arrive by the year end.

Flight training and operational sorties of the aircraft are likely to begin early next week and preparations were on in this regard, they said, adding that besides Tezpur, a full squadron of Sukhoi fighter jets would also be deployed at Chabua base in eastern Assam subsequently.

The IAF was also contemplating to deploy another squadron at Bagdogra air base in West Bengal, the officials said.

The Su-30s had operated from Tezpur air base when they were formally inducted in the base on June 15. Since then, the air base which has been upgraded to house the jets was also opened for civil aviation.

Four Su30s had landed at the base on June 12 for a symbolic induction and a fighter aircraft operated from the airbase after a gap of more than a year since MIG fighters were moved out of it, the officials said.

Having aerial refueling capability, the Su30 MKI multi-role combat jets have a combat radius of 1,500 km.

The MKI variant of the warplane which was inducted into the IAF in 2002 are said to have an impeccable safety record. The IAF already has three squadrons of Su-30 MKIs at Lohegaon and Bareilly.


Is this DDM or was tezpur fighter-nude for a year?

Very symbolic IMHO, esp when the dalai lama is set to enter arunachal.

(edited , sorry for the confusion.)
Last edited by ashkrishna on 06 Nov 2009 16:02, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Rahul M » 06 Nov 2009 16:00

karan, I keep hearing about old airframes wrt IL-476 but this info doesn't seem too reliable to me.
the globalsecurity link for example says nothing about old airframes.
the IL-106 project is long abandoned btw.

incidentally, the MTA is about double the An-32's weight, I wonder if it can carry out all that the An-32 can.

self edited.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby abhik » 06 Nov 2009 18:39

I really dont understand why members are cribbing about the possible c-17 buys.
Nowhere have i seen any evidence of the Il-76 being presently in production or in the future(I take Russian promises of doing so with more than a pinch of salt).So if you cant buy a new one , where is the question of it being 5x times cheaper.
Also in light of the news of the IAF having to cannibalize a couple of them to keep the rest of the fleet going how prudent will it be stake all our heavy lift capability only on the upgraded il-76s.
If the IAF cannot service it's fleet now without cannibalizing then one can only imagine the future.
And..
Singha wrote:....
its onlee in moving armour, vehicles and artillery that mil transports have a distinct advantage in Indian env.

hence I will strongly pretend to be an expert and claim in Indian Environment, we dont
need too many LARGE mil transports. imo we need
quickly

Other than moving armour, vehicles and artillery one must not forget a whole host of equipment like large powerful raders ,missiles and launchers of an ABM system for example which need to reach their destination with out delay during contingencies.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Singha » 06 Nov 2009 20:44

what is the status of the MTA ? to me the 'talks' seem interminable and there is no overt news of
work whether in R&D to finalize the thing or in production facilities.

I have heard MTA MTA for 7 years now with not single plane in the air.

[a] what is the current situation
[b] when is the first flight?
[c] when IOC & FOC?

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Vivek K » 06 Nov 2009 20:46

Good point Singha.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Singha » 06 Nov 2009 21:05

I am getting old and need to see the MTA in squadron service before leaving my mortal coil.

people talked of MTA as if its just about to enter IOC when disparaging the C130J purchase. yet this
mythical bird of golden feathers does not even have a single sample doing ground taxi runs. immense progress remains even if we import it 100% without the time and complexities of license making and indigenization which is ofcourse a must.

my prediction is MTA if it ever happens is 7-8 yrs away from wearing a IAF squadron patch.

we need more 50 x C130 (base version) and we need to complete the AN32 upg signed with Ukraine.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby Rahul M » 06 Nov 2009 21:18


my prediction is MTA if it ever happens is 7-8 yrs away from wearing a IAF squadron patch.

we need more 50 x C130 (base version) and we need to complete the AN32 upg signed with Ukraine.

even if it is 7-8 years from now (my own estimate would be about 10 years i.e 2020) what is the sudden gap in capabilities that requires fast-track induction of baseline C-130's ??

btw, IAF's MTA requirement itself is 45, if it buys 50 C-130's there will be no need for MTA.

and I'm still wondering if the proposed MTA or the C-130 would be able to operate from the ALGs as well as the much smaller An-32.

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Re: Indian Military Aviation

Postby jai » 06 Nov 2009 21:36

GeorgeWelch

The C-5 is not in production and never will be again.

The An-124 isn't in production, and while there has been talk of restarting the line, nothing has come of it yet. Thus there would be a lot of expense and risk with restarting a line compared to jumping in the currently working C-17 line.

And that's just to get the old model.

Significant development work would be needed for modernized engines and avionics, meaning more money and risk and time.

Then of course there is the issue that Surya mentioned that they are both rather huge aircraft and aren't really suitable for the semi-tactical uses the C-17 can be put to.


I agree with your logic.
It does seem that we currently do not have too many options, specially in Laddakh. One can only guess when will the rail lines/all weather multi lane highway to Laddakh ever get completed and what will the IA/IAF do till such time. I think with or without these, heavy lift capability would still be critical to us.

On AN 124, one wonders - given the relationship and right money, the Russians may still oblige maybe like the MKI deal..given that there is a market for a plane with this capacity...freighters for sure besides military use..specially since C5 is out of production...may be the USAF would buy some - given that they have been leasing it of late.. :wink: Long term, it may be a good idea for India to plan co-production of such aircraft with an international partner. For the short term, maybe lease some from RuAF/private operators.

Another thing I often wonder about is the actual level of upgrades done to the ALG's in Laddakh - beyond just landing aircraft, and taking them off again without switching off engines. Given the criticality of these, one wonders why are these not being converted to full use airforce bases.....and if these can not be - due to geographical constraints..surely the plateau can offer enough space for another large base with a runway long enough for the biggest birds...
I am no expert on the topography there, so maybe our experts can enlighten this newbee...


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