US military, technology, arms, tactics

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brar_w
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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 06 Oct 2019 08:27

To sum up, no the C-band AWACS radar cannot guide an AMRAAM to target. The surveillance sensor cues the fighter which provides a mid flight update to the missile. AEW surveillance radars operate in disparate bands ranging from UHF up to C band, with L and S band AEW aircraft also prevalent. The sub 8 inch A2A interceptors do not carry data-links across those frequency even if one were to ignore the fact that there is absolutely no public information on missile communication being a requirement for any Airborne AEW surveillance radar out there (not to mention the fact that you would need a two-way data link and GPS to establish exact missile location given the vast distance between AEW and missile and it is not feasable to put that much signal out of a missile data-link antenna).

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby Cain Marko » 06 Oct 2019 11:35

NRao wrote:
Cain Marko wrote:Again I'm not entirely sure on all this but I've not heard of aew providing fire control and guidance for AAMs.


The short answer as far as the US is concerned is it does not matter. In the sensor-shooter scenario being pushed around, the system in between the two either decides the best option (embedded intelligence) or assists humans. That in a nutshell.

Very, very briefly, in 2004 (or so) they introduced a "kill web" (below) (as opposed to a "kill chain"). In the "web" a sensor reports, the system decides (it packs a lot) and the shooter shoots. There is a lot more to this, but that would go beyond the topic quoted above.

Image

(Even that is under review, but the revisions should not be too far from that depiction.)

Recent (past 5 years or so) contributions include methodologies/processes used in the commercial world and standardization (to the extent C2 HW/SW can be pretty much common across all platforms, across services).

Here is a recent (June 2019) article from the US Army. It is rather dense:

FROM SENSOR TO SHOOTER, FASTER

yes, this is quite interesting and I had read about it earlier but the question remains can AWACS provide high quality resolution to guide air to air missiles to maneuvering and fast moving targets? If they are successful in providing quality tracks at long ranges the future might just see drones doing all the BVR - the need for humans in the sensor - shooter loop could be minimized. Drones are positioned near the enemy fighters - fire off a salvo, AWACs tracks and guides the missiles all the way to targets from super long ranges.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 06 Oct 2019 18:44

This is an interesting program to follow. They are attempting to fully develop and test a highly loaded grain SRM that would optimize for size and weight to double the magazine capacity of hypersonic missiles/launchers (compared to LRHW) and to allow for easier deployment and mobility. The goal is to go from a 2 Hypersonic rounds per TEL up to 4 per TEL while retaining the range, and performance. End to End testing of a full scale system is expected in 2022 or just as the LRHW becomes operational. There is a strong likelihood that the system chosen is also MK41 cell compliant which would give the DDG's an Intermediate Range Hypersonic missile capability that is likely only going to be on the submarine fleet initially..



DARPA’s Operational Fires (OpFires) program has reached a major program milestone, completing booster preliminary design review of an innovative two-stage tactical missile system. OpFires aims to develop and demonstrate a ground-launched hypersonic weapon system to engage critical, time-sensitive targets in contested environments.

The first two phases of the program focus on the propulsion technologies required to deliver diverse payloads a variety of ranges. Since Phase 1 contract awards last fall, Aerojet Rocketdyne, Exquadrum, and Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) have made critical discoveries in advanced rocket motor technology for the OpFires upper stage, completing more than 30 motor trials from subscale through full size. These advances put the program on track for booster critical design review in late 2020.

Exquadrum completed a full-scale, full-duration test fire Sept. 19, which marked the performer’s culminating event for Phase 1. SNC has targeted October to complete its Phase 1 testing, and Aerojet Rocketdyne completed six subscale tests in August. Development activities will continue under Phase 2, which will culminate with multiple hot/static fires targeted for late 2020.

DARPA anticipates awards later this year for the third phase of the OpFires program, which aims to develop an operational system design leveraging propulsion systems concepts developed under the first two phases of the program. Phase 3 will conclude with integrated end-to-end flight tests to begin in 2022.


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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby Prasad » 06 Oct 2019 20:40

brarji,
a question. i've not seen any images of US hypersonic missiles. The chinese displayed their bgv mounted on a rocket in the open like the rlv-td. From what I heard from the proj dir, they would've liked to use a pslv/gslv instead so that the payload fairing helps shield it initially and reduce need to do aerodynamic studies and avoid those complexities. I'd assume missiles would be similar. Do american missiles have similar or different configurations?

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 06 Oct 2019 21:33

Prasad wrote:brarji,
a question. i've not seen any images of US hypersonic missiles. The chinese displayed their bgv mounted on a rocket in the open like the rlv-td. From what I heard from the proj dir, they would've liked to use a pslv/gslv instead so that the payload fairing helps shield it initially and reduce need to do aerodynamic studies and avoid those complexities. I'd assume missiles would be similar. Do american missiles have similar or different configurations?


There are few images of US hypersonic weapons. Here's one of the AHW test from a few years ago -

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Here's a video of the AGM-183A Hypersonic Air Launched Rapid Response Weapon (ARRW) undergoing Captive carry testing prior to beginning flight testing.



US Army LRHW -

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There are 3 Boost Glide Vehicle designs that have been publicly revealed by the US. One is the Common Glide Vehicle that is on board tri-service programs and it will form the basis of the conventional hypersonic triad (LRHW for the US Army, Conventional Prompt Strike for the US Navy, and Air Launched Hacksaw for the USAF). Then there are the two DARPA Tactical Boost Glide BGV's, one each from Lockheed Martin and Raytheon. Lockheed is about 6 months ahead and will test fly its missile by the end of the year or early next year. Raytheon possibly in 2020 or early 2021. All have been depicted with a payload fairing.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby Prasad » 06 Oct 2019 21:42

Thanks a lot!

So your opinion on the chinese df-17 they displayed?

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 06 Oct 2019 21:45

It is a known weapon which was tested in 2016 or 2017 and was confirmed by US intel at the time. It is said to be a medium ranged system believed to be primarily meant to knock out Air and Missile Defense systems and infrastructure and has spurred a pretty frantic round of Counter Hypersonic interceptor (and non kinetic option) development and fast-tracking at the US Missile Defense Agency. Air Defense systems in Guam, South Korea, and Japan are probably within range. Last year, the US MDA became a party to the the tri-service boost glide vehicle program in an effort to fast track a target system and begin testing against the threat type hopefully well ahead of when this missile proliferates in quantity. Your conventional area BMD interceptors are woefully inadequate against this threat (within any reasonable bounds of PK and exchange ratios) as are terrestrial and early warning sensors which need some serious beefing up given the RCS's, flight trajectories and cruise altitudes and distances involved. Mike Griffin, who heads Research and Engineering at the Pentagon literally spent his entire life researching these and other capabilities and has done a pretty good job of laying out the challenges and what needs to be done from a capability development perspective. The challenges are fairly well understood, you just have to roll up your sleeves and get to engineering viable solutions.

https://aviationweek.com/defense/mda-se ... se-studies

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 07 Oct 2019 18:38

While they're gone from the USN, the USMC is upgrading a 100 Classic Hornets with the APG-79(v)4 AESA radar and will hold them on to about a decade or more.

US Navy retires ‘classic’ Hornets from frontline service


The US Navy (USN) has retired from active service its fleet of Boeing F/A-18A-D Hornet combat aircraft, announcing on 2 October that the final flight took place out of Naval Air Station (NAS) Oceana, Virginia.

The retirement of the ‘classic’ Hornets brings to an end 35 years of frontline service with the USN, and comes just over a year since the service performed its final carrier deployment of the type earlier in 2018.

However, while the Hornet has been retired from the USN’s active unit inventory, it will remain operational with the Navy Reserve, the Blue Angels display team, and the US Marine Corps (USMC). Prior to being withdrawn, the USN and USMC fielded between them 95 F/A-18A, 21 F/A-18B, 370 F/A-18C, and 131 F/A-18D aircraft. While some of the USN’s aircraft will be scrapped, others will be placed in long-term storage should they be required in the future.

Of these 617 platforms, 150 Hornets of differing designations have been earmarked by the USMC for a Structural Life Assessment Program/Service Life Extension Program (SLAP/SLEP) with the aim of keeping them in operational service until about 2035.


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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby NRao » 08 Oct 2019 07:16

Cain Marko wrote:
NRao wrote:
The short answer as far as the US is concerned is it does not matter. In the sensor-shooter scenario being pushed around, the system in between the two either decides the best option (embedded intelligence) or assists humans. That in a nutshell.

...................

yes, this is quite interesting and I had read about it earlier but the question remains can AWACS provide high quality resolution to guide air to air missiles to maneuvering and fast moving targets? If they are successful in providing quality tracks at long ranges the future might just see drones doing all the BVR - the need for humans in the sensor - shooter loop could be minimized. Drones are positioned near the enemy fighters - fire off a salvo, AWACs tracks and guides the missiles all the way to targets from super long ranges.


Clarifying what I said in my previous post, in the new scenario such questions are never asked. In the Sensor->"System"->Shooter model, the "System" "knows" and decides all those small details. If and when new techs enter the scene, the "System" updates itself.

Here is a peek:

Lt. Gen. David Deputla wrote:We are moving into a future where aircraft need to be looked at as not just elements of their own, but as a system of information nodes - sensor - shooter - effectors. It is about creating an entire system of systems that is self-forming and self-healing with a greater degree of awareness than an adversary can achieve, and a much greater degree of survivability


"Awareness" is the operative word. "not just elements of there own" = do not bother with small details like what an AC carries, thrust, etc.

As an example, no more net-centric, it is being replaced. Net-centric is "data" (and data fusion), NOT awareness.

Also, the need for "stealth" is being debated within. Sensors are so advanced that what "Stealth" the US has is pretty much what they are thinking of fielding. "Awareness" > stealth.

LM took 4 months to PoC an RT over-the-horizon data integration solution. Too long.

There is a LOT to unpack, things are moving rather fast.

Again, just to be sure, it is for the US. May not apply for others.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 08 Oct 2019 07:25

NRao wrote:Clarifying what I said in my previous post, in the new scenario such questions are never asked. In the Sensor->"System"->Shooter, the "System" "knows" and decides all those small details. If and when new techs enter the scene, the "System" updates itself.


I think this does very little to address the question of whether an AWACS can guide a BVRAAM (AMRAAM, meteor etc) to target. The answer, based on all open source data, is NO it cannot. The rest is just a neat and interesting narrative about things that are ongoing with kill webs replacing kill chains and data fusion. There are fundamental technical limitations to that question that 4th/5th generation aircraft and their associated weapons are not able to overcome to enable such concepts of operations. Can this change in years/decades to come? Sure. But as things stand, to answer the original question, the technology is not there to support that capability given some of the technical considerations I highlighted earlier. Things will surely change in the near-mid term but I think the entire concept of "AEW" is going to take a fundamental turn from high value, single points of failures to more dispersed systems possible in both air and space. In that context the missile communication issue only becomes harder though not insurmountable. The technology is there..its just at a cost prohibitive point right now.

I think for a deeper analysis into this question, it would be best to dig deeper into missile communication, how data integrity and uplink is maintained amidst clutter, jamming and other forms of disruption..how targeting updates are provided to a BVRAAM and what systems engineering goes behind your basic 7 inch diameter AAM and its associated systems/components as in what the trade space is and what resources you have to work with.
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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 08 Oct 2019 07:36


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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby NRao » 08 Oct 2019 08:03

Brar Saheb, very respectfully (nothing personal), I am painfully aware of your contributions - right from the Turkey thread days. So, with all due respects, "open source" AND "URL"s are yesterday's news.

I use "open source"/"URL" to ID and solve problems. AFWERX/SBIR has provided a perfect path for someone like myself. Get funding in literally two weeks and off I go. Dealing with stars. People are just waking to the profound changes happening!!! I will stop at that.



On "does very little to address the question of whether " - the "System" will know that and address it. If today the AWACS cannot, then the "system" will not involve the AWACS in the solution. IF and when the AWACS gets that capability, the "System" will "know" and involve the AWACS - IF the AWACS is actually the best solution. Today, the "System" is an ABM. It is a problem. At one point in time, the problem was what I read and heard. Enough said.

I can go off-line.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 08 Oct 2019 08:12

NRao wrote:Brar Saheb, very respectfully (nothing personal), I am painfully aware of your contributions - right from the Turkey thread days. So, with all due respects, "open source" AND "URL"s are yesterday's news.

I use "open source"/"URL" to ID and solve problems. AFWERX/SBIR has provided a perfect path for someone like myself. Get funding in literally two weeks and off I go. Dealing with stars. People are just waking to the profound changes happening!!! I will stop at that.



On "does very little to address the question of whether " - the "System" will know that and address it. If today the AWACS cannot, then the "system" will not involve the AWACS in the solution. IF and when the AWACS gets that capability, the "System" will "know" and involve the AWACS - IF the AWACS is actually the best solution. Today, the "System" is an ABM. It is a problem. At one point in time, the problem was what I read and heard. Enough said.

I can go off-line.


I'm sorry but it is getting really difficult to read and make sense of these posts. I was trying to discuss the question that Cain posed which I felt was interesting and very specific and clear in that the AWACS's ability or inability to execute a Beyond Visual Range engagement utilizing its surveillance sensor as a Fire Control radar.

But I will leave it there and not bother you anymore ! I hope you get your next SBIR soon and close the AEW to BVRAAM fire control loop and then old farts like myself can "URL" it here. :)

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby NRao » 08 Oct 2019 08:15

The answer to Cain's question is no.

Because there is no such need. No task.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby Cain Marko » 08 Oct 2019 10:21

brar_w wrote:
NRao wrote:Brar Saheb, very respectfully (nothing personal), I am painfully aware of your contributions - right from the Turkey thread days. So, with all due respects, "open source" AND "URL"s are yesterday's news.

I use "open source"/"URL" to ID and solve problems. AFWERX/SBIR has provided a perfect path for someone like myself. Get funding in literally two weeks and off I go. Dealing with stars. People are just waking to the profound changes happening!!! I will stop at that.



On "does very little to address the question of whether " - the "System" will know that and address it. If today the AWACS cannot, then the "system" will not involve the AWACS in the solution. IF and when the AWACS gets that capability, the "System" will "know" and involve the AWACS - IF the AWACS is actually the best solution. Today, the "System" is an ABM. It is a problem. At one point in time, the problem was what I read and heard. Enough said.

I can go off-line.

I was trying to discuss the question that Cain posed which I felt was interesting and very specific and clear in that the AWACS's ability or inability to execute a Beyond Visual Range engagement utilizing its surveillance sensor as a Fire Control radar.

Actually I was going to ask you directly to answer this question - thanks for preempting my post, you are all about early warning I see :) So to take the discussion one step further - how do shipborne radars like the MFSTAR manage to provide weapons quality tracks to SAMs? Is it because of the smaller range on these missiles? Or perhaps the size that these SAMs bring to bear (I'm thinking not only of the Barak 8 here but also the long ranged S300 types). Or is it something else altogether? Some exotic software algorithms that allow these radars to guide SAMs?

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 08 Oct 2019 10:43

They are Fire Control radars that have missile communication as part of their function, while also operating in other modes when required. They are also guiding SAMs or naval missiles that have data-links that are in band either with them directly or with illuminations or with both in case they build in redundancy (DDG-51 flight IIIs are keeping both). When you are dealing with a large air surveillance mission on an AWACS you are tasked with ATC, guiding intercepts, re-allocating resources and de-conflicting to prevent fratricide etc etc the BVRAAM missile may be hundreds of km away at the FEBA.

You are also dealing with a missile that is most likely out of band as far as it transmission is considered but even if it weren’t it won’t have to power to fully communicate to handshake on a position given that errors creep in when distances are that large. It is not a coincidence that as BVR weapon ranges continue to grow things like GPS augmentation of INS is finding its way as the precision with which you know where the missile is at any given time boosts your pk by allowing a more optimal trajectory to kill box. Missile communication and the ability of low frequency sensors to discriminate and provide the FC quality tracking data to 7 inch optimized missile seeker Is what is holding things back .i reckon very wideband data link solutions exist that may partially solve some of these issues but they are probably very cutting edge and very hard to produce and integrate affordably. They will likely also be power hungry making two way comms problematic at those distances. The sensor frequency diversity is still an issue..An L band radar won’t be able to fire control on a BVRAAM from that distance..simple physics demand a higher frequency sensor even at much shorter distances.

It is my hypothesis that wideband data links in 6-8 inch missiles are just around the corner and that the future may separate, disaggregate and distribute the transmit and receive functions of your basic “Fire Control Sensor” on disparate dispersed platforms. If so this will require quantum leap in missile comms and autonomy but will greatly complicate the defensive mission by completely eliminating single points of failure and ensuring ultimate graceful degradation of capability. It will also reduce the stress on seeker complexity which can drive as much as 70% the cost of a modern interceptor. Let’s see if this pans out but this is my theory..On the ground system side Interferometer Sensors are already being looked at as a viable replacement for giant monolithic missile defense sensors that are expensive and hard to move around..US SCO demonstrated one such system to guide a hypervelocity projectiles (without a seeker) to ballistic missiles targets. There is some promise there which is now being followed through with funding...

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 08 Oct 2019 18:34

With all the talk of the big jammers coming online, this little capability is probably as important given the types of mission it enables and supports and the fact that its modular nature means that very threat specific payloads can be designed in developed in short order (months instead of years that it takes traditionally) -

MALD-N programme funded into EMD phase;Jane's Missiles & Rockets;Richard Scott, London

The US Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) has awarded Raytheon Missile Systems a USD33 million contract modification that will fund engineering and manufacturing development (EMD) of the Miniature Air Launched Decoy – Navy (MALD-N).

Announced on 30 January the 24-month EMD phase follows on from a USD46.6 million technical maturation and risk reduction (TMRR) contract placed by NAVAIR in September 2018.

Evolved from the US Air Force’s (USAF’s) ADM-160C MALD-J system – a subscale turbojet-powered decoy/jammer with a maximum range of about 500 n miles – the MALD-N programme is intended to address the US Navy’s (USN’s) requirement for a network-enabled stand-in jammer to support suppression of enemy air defences. Stand-in jamming employs a combination of tactics and techniques whereby an unmanned aerial vehicle, equipped with an electronic attack (EA) payload, is deployed in close proximity to the threat radar and within the lethal engagement envelope of associated surface-to-air missiles. In this way, it provides screening for other platforms.

The EMD phase for MALD-N will be followed by low-rate initial production (LRIP) during fiscal year 2021 (FY 2021) and FY 2022 (LRIP covers an estimated quantity of 250 MALD-N weapons). MALD-N is scheduled to achieve early operating capability on the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet in 2021, followed by initial operating capability in 2022.

While MALD-N air vehicle development is being single-sourced to Raytheon, the development of the EA payload has been split off and is to be the subject of a separate competition. According to NAVAIR, the successful EA payload contractor will in due course become a subcontractor to Raytheon.

The MALD-N development is leveraging the recent MALD-X capability demonstrator programme, for which Raytheon was awarded a USD34.8 million contract by the USAF in March 2016. Funded through the Special Capabilities Office at the Office of the Secretary of Defense, MALD-X was set up to demonstrate capabilities potentially applicable to the USN’s MALD-N programme and at the same time establish an upgrade path for USAF’s existing MALD-J inventory.

The MALD-X air vehicle system embodied a new modular front end, an improved EA payload, a datalink, and a low-altitude capability. Flight demonstrations were performed in August 2018 at the USN’s Point Mugu Sea Range off California.



From an earlier article from the same author:

While MALD-N development is being single sourced to Raytheon because it would be prohibitively expensive to qualify a second source, a NAVAIR class justification and approval (CJ&A) document for use of other than full and open competition has revealed that EA payload development is being split off from the air vehicle. Informed by a 2017 submission from BAE Systems, which had offered a prospective TRL 6 solution for the MALD-N payload, the CJ&A noted that the programme office [Precision Strike Weapons (PMA-201)] had “made the decision to ‘breakout’ the payload from the air vehicle to enable multiple sources the opportunity to propose capability solutions for the MALD-N programme during the [TMRR] phase”.

It continued that “The programme office will determine the best-value payload vendor based on proposals received under a separate multiple award contract fair opportunity competition. It is the government’s expectation that the successful payload contractor will be a subcontractor to [Raytheon Missile Systems] on contracts issued under the authority of this CJ&A.”

USN’s interest in a tailored-MALD derivative as a replacement for the ageing ADM-141 Improved Tactical Air-Launched Decoy has developed over several years. A previous activity was the CERBERUS (Countermeasure Expendable with Replaceable Block Elements for Reactive Unmanned Systems Multi-Mission Jammer) Joint Capability Technology Demonstration (JCTD) undertaken jointly by the US Naval Research Laboratory and Raytheon. A Military Utility Assessment, conducted in June 2015 during the biannual ‘Northern Edge’ exercise in Alaska, demonstrated successful captive flights of a modular, rapid replacement architecture for alternative MALD-J payloads.

Evolved over a four-year program in collaboration with the US Pacific Command and NAVAIR (through the Airborne Electronic Attack Systems and EA-6B Program Office [PMA-234]), the JCTD developed a payload system architecture integrated with a quick interchange structural connection. Conceived with emerging threats in the Pacific Command area of responsibility foremost in mind, the precept of CERBERUS was to deliver a net-enabled modular expendable jamming system by employing reconfigurable, flexible, and rapidly replaceable nosecone payloads hosted in the MALD air vehicle.

The CERBERUS was followed by the MALD-X demonstration programme, for which Raytheon was awarded a USD34.8 million contract by the USAF in March 2016. Funded through the Special Capabilities Office at the Office of the Secretary of Defense, the MALD-X programme has been used to demonstrate capabilities potentially applicable to MALD-N and establish an upgrade path for the USAF’s MALD-J.

MALD-X embodied a new modular front-end, an improved EA payload, a datalink, and a low altitude capability. Flight demonstrations were performed in August 2018 on the USN’s Point Mugu Sea Range off California.




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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby kit » 09 Oct 2019 00:28

https://www.popularmechanics.com/military/aviation/a29389666/fa-18-hornet-final-flight/%20?source=nl&utm_source=nl_pop&utm_medium=email&date=100819&utm_campaign=nl18262024&src=nl

The U.S. Navy marked the end of an era last week when the last active duty F/A-18C Hornet flew for the last time. The strike fighter, the first to be anointed with both Fighter and Attack designations, flew for nearly four decades before being replaced by its bigger brother, the Super Hornet. The original Hornet still serves with the U.S. Navy’s elite flight demonstration team, the Blue Angels.

The flight took place at Naval Air Station Oceana, Virginia Beach, Virginia on October 2, 2019. The aircraft was Hornet number 300, assigned to Strike Fighter Squadron 106 (“Gladiators”). According to the U.S. Navy, 300 completed its first acceptance check flight on October 14, 1988. The pilot for the last flight, Lt. Andrew Jalali, was also born in 1988.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 09 Oct 2019 17:40

Much like the SM-6's adoption of the SM-3 IIA's larger diameter body for a super long range Interceptor and a Ballistic Anti Ship Missile capability, (SM-6 Block 1 B ) Raytheon's SM3-HAWK proposal for Hypersonic defense probably utilizes the SM-3 IIA and its high-divert DACS based KV modified to operate in the Mesosphere given the most likely efficient cruising altitudes for BGV's reside there. Given this, proving out some inherent residual capability in the booster or surplus divert capability in the KV may go a long way to get them a contract award to build SM3-HAWK which seems like the fastest way for the US Navy to field a credible Counter Hypersonic/BGV capability that attacks the problem in the vehicle's cruise phase for area defense missions.

I think it may just also open up alternatives to an AEGIS ashore East Coast site with the US Navy likely pushing for more of a deployable East Coast defense capability via procurement of some additional DDG-51 Flight III's. It also provides options for Hawaii in case the Homeland Defense Radars that are being built there ever need to be converted into full fledged Aegis Ashore like systems (they would only really need Anti ICBM capability so those sites would have to be different from a standard AA site in Eastern Europe, Japan or elsewhere).

Raytheon confident SM-3 Block IIA can intercept ICBM warheads


Raytheon is "very confident" the Standard Missile-3 Block IIA -- a new ballistic missile interceptor developed with Japan to defeat medium- and intermediate-range threats -- can also knock down intercontinental ballistic missiles, delivering Washington and Tokyo more than they originally bargained for.

Mitch Stevison, Raytheon Missile Systems' vice president, said the kinematic potential of the SM-3 Block IIA is projected to significantly outperform the original design requirements, delivering a weapon system that allows the U.S. military and Japan's self defense forces to think anew about how to employ the new variant of the SM-3 line.

"From a physics-based model standpoint, we're very confident the capabilities of that missile that was jointly developed with Japan can deal with the ICBM threat that the nation has today," Stevison said. "And that we see evolving every day."

The Missile Defense Agency is preparing to fly the SM-3 Block IIA against an ICBM-class target in early 2020, a test that lawmakers asked for two years ago.


The new interceptor has a 21-inch-diameter body -- an increase from the 13.5 inches used in earlier SM-3 variants -- to fly faster and farther to defend against short- to intermediate-range ballistic missiles. The guided missile, developed by Raytheon and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, features two improvements on earlier SM-3 variants: a larger motor and a larger kinetic warhead.

The warhead has new improvements, including a seeker that upgrades search, discrimination and tracking functions.

Pentagon leaders are on the cusp of a decision to transition the SM-3 Block IIA from development to production, capping an effort launched in 2006. The development called for the cost of the new interceptor to be equally divided by Japan and the United States. The U.S. share of the development program is $2.1 billion.

Originally designed to deal with regional ballistic missile threats from Iran and North Korea, MDA is planning FTM-44 to explore the potential for SM-3 Block IIA when paired with the Aegis BMD system built by Lockheed Martin to provide an "underlay" of the Ground-based Midcourse Defense system.

"There is a realization that physics say the design capability exceeds what it was initially set up to be," Stevison said.

No modifications to the SM-3 Block IIA are necessary to defend against an ICBM threat, he added.

"We can't go into specifics. . . . I can tell you there is no adjustment to the missile," Stevison said. "I can tell you . . . the capability of the SM-3 IIA is the inherent capability of the SM-3 IIA as it was designed. The adjustment that you see there is largely around the test construct to be able to test the capability and do the demonstration of what our physics-based models already tells us we can do."

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 10 Oct 2019 09:58

420th Flight Test Squadron reactivated to support B-21 Raider testing at Edwards


EDWARDS AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. --
The 420th Flight Test Squadron was reactivated following an assumption of command ceremony here Oct. 4. The squadron will plan, test, analyze and report on all flight and ground testing of the B-21 Raider.

The 420 FLTS is organized under the 412th Test Wing, which is part of the Air Force Test Center, headquartered at Edwards. The squadron, along with the Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office, will ensure the Air Force delivers this asymmetric capability to the warfighter.

The B-21 will be a highly survivable, next-generation bomber with the ability to penetrate modern air defenses and hold any target at risk globally. The program has a mature and stable design and is transitioning to manufacturing development of the first test aircraft in Palmdale, California.

“The first flight of the Raider will take it from Palmdale to Edwards AFB, where the legacy of excellence will continue with the reactivation of the 420th Flight Test Squadron,” said Acting Secretary of the Air Force Matthew Donovan, during the Air Force Association Conference Sept. 16.

This legacy of excellence began July 17, 1989, when the B-2 Spirit, the world’s first stealth bomber, took off from Northrop Grumman’s production facility at Plant 42 in Palmdale, and landed 112 minutes later at Edwards for developmental testing by the 420th FLTS.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 12 Oct 2019 21:19

As I had pointed too in an earlier post from a few months ago, there seems to be a divergence in the USMC and US Army requirements. USMC wants more range and a faster aircraft. This will likely mean that potentially both the V-280, and the SB>1 based designs could see the light of the day. One with the US Navy and USMC and the other with the US Army as a Blackhawk replacement. There are plenty of production orders to justify such a split especially when both these aircraft are expected to have a common OMS core and mission systems and engines.

U.S. Army Takes Reins of Rotorcraft Replacement;Aviation Week & Space Technology Oct 09, 2019


The U.S. Army has the Pentagon’s blessing to lead development of a Sikorsky Black Hawk replacement and congressional support to do so without having to stop investing in the Block 2 Boeing Chinook to pay for it.

The Future Long-Range Assault Aircraft (FLRAA), also known as Capability Set 3, is a subset of the Future Vertical Lift (FVL) initiative established to fill the medium-rotorcraft requirements of the Army, Marine Corps and U.S. Special Operations Command (SOCOM). But this summer, the services began to chip away at the idea of a joint platform.

In July, the Army received permission to determine the fate of FLRAA prototype development when Ellen Lord, the Pentagon’s chief weapons buyer, delegated acquisition authority to the service. Two months later, in September, the Marine Corps launched external studies on the Attack Utility Replacement Aircraft (AURA), a high-speed rotorcraft to replace the Bell UH/AH-1 fleet. A joint replacement for the H-1s, along with the Army’s UH-60s and SOCOM’s MH-60s, was the subject of an analysis of alternatives completed by the services early this year. The Marines’ move to seek ideas for AURA may banish any hope that FVL would result in greater platform commonality across the services. It seems the only way to achieve commonality resides within open mission system technologies.

The Marines’ request for information seeks responses from air vehicle, engine and mission systems suppliers by January. A hurdle to a joint solution with the Army is that the Marine Corps is looking for a top speed of 300-330 kt. and a 450-nm radius carrying 10 troops, while the Army is seeking a maximum speed of 250-289 kt. and an unrefueled combat radius of 200-300 nm with 12 troops.

The Marines need a faster, longer-range rotorcraft because AURA is envisioned as an armed escort for the Bell BoeingMV-22B Osprey tiltrotor. The concept advancement phase will inform a Milestone A decision after fiscal 2023 that will lead to selecting a contractor to develop and produce the AURA. At the same time, the Army has released a solicitation to formally kick off competitive demonstration and risk reduction (CD&RR) for FLRAA with the goal of equipping the first unit no later than 2030—an acceleration of almost five years over previous plans. The solicitation was issued through the Army Aviation and Missile Technology Consortium Other Transaction Authority and is not publicly available.

The solicitation likely went to Bell and Sikorsky/Boeing, which are flight testing demonstrators for FLRAA under the Army’s Joint Multi-Role (JMR) science and technology program. Bell has been flying the V-280 tiltrotor since December 2017 and has demonstrated its 280-kt. top speed. The Sikorsky/Boeing coaxial rigid-rotor compound SB-1 Defiant first flew in March.

“The Sikorsky-Boeing SB-1 Defiant is flying, and we are continuing our flight-test program as part of our aircraft envelope expansion program,” the team tells Aviation Week in a statement.

Aviation modernization plans will cost the Army more than $4.7 billion over the fiscal 2020-24 future years defense program. In order to free up funding for FVL, Army senior leadership decided to cancel the Block 2 upgrade for the service’s heavy-lift CH-47F Chinooks.The Army originally planned to upgrade 542 CH-47Fs and 69 MH-47Gs to the Block 2 standard. Now the service plans to take delivery of the last -CH-47F Block 1 in 2020 and then procure Block 2 upgrades only for the special-operations MH-47Gs.

The justification for canceling CH-47 Block 2 procurement to free funding for FVL is that the Block 1 upgrade has made the Chinook fleet the youngest in the Army, with an average age of less than eight years. However, lawmakers on Capitol Hill are pushing back on the strategy.

Senate appropriators in their mark up of the fiscal 2020 defense bill restored advance procurement funding to support the purchase of Block 2 upgrades. “The [Appropriations] Committee strongly encourages the Secretary of the Army to assess the increased cost, expected production issues as well as industrial base risks of delaying the successful acquisition program,” states a report accompanying the markup.

Funding added by Congress for 2019 will support additional flight testing by the two JMR technology demonstrators. Bell is continuing envelope expansion with the V-280 tiltrotor. For the Defiant, the Sikorsky/Boeing team is targeting a cruise speed of 250 kt.he FLRAA solicitation signals “a tip of the hat on the multi-year acceleration that the Army’s committed to,” says Brig. Gen. Walter Rugen, FVL cross-functional team director at U.S. Futures Command. FVL is the Army’s third modernization priority, after long-range precision fires and a next-generation combat vehicle.

The first phase of the CD&RR effort is to deliver initial conceptual designs that include technical documentation to support the design, requirements work and trade studies. “We are committed to equipping the Army’s first unit with Future Long-Range Assault Aircraft no later than 2030,” says Col. David Phillips, FLRAA project manager at the program executive office for aviation.

Now that the FVL requirements have been approved by Army leadership, the service will begin sharing information with allies. Australia, Japan, the Netherlands and the UK all are interested in the work the U.S. is doing, says Rugen.

“You’re going to see an international plan probably that models other successful programs that the joint force has done,” Rugen says. “We’re glad to have these partners come aboard.”


Meanwhile, Europeans are already wanting to join into the program given the size of the market -

Leonardo: Europe Should Have Role In Future Vertical Lift

The managing director of Leonardo’s helicopter business says he would like to see a role for European industry in the programs that emerge from the U.S. Army’s Future Vertical Lift (FVL).

Gian Piero Cutillo told Aerospace DAILY on the sidelines of the 1,000th AW139 helicopter delivery in September that the European helicopter industry had generated the competencies to make it a useful partner in such a program, and said the company was in continuous talks with different partners but “there is nothing concrete.”

European industry points to the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program, which while securing significant sales in Europe has had an impact on the sales of European-built combat aircraft.

There is a fear that with the volume of FVL platforms likely to be purchased by the U.S., their price could make FVL an attractive proposition for export customers. Sikorsky’s Black Hawk has secured an increased customer base, particularly in Eastern Europe in recent years.

The U.S. Army’s work on a Future Long-Range Assault Aircraft (FLRAA) and Future Attack Reconnaissance Aircraft (FARA) is beginning to attract attention from European nations, with the U.S. Army planning to begin sharing information with allies shortly. The UK already has personnel embedded into the FVL program and is working on an operational analysis of its future helicopter fleets, with a focus on what high-speed rotorcraft can offer UK land forces.

“From my heart, I would like to see European industry become one of the main actors. I strongly believe we have all the capabilities,” Cutillo said. “We are talking about what will be a global program, with more than one technology and room for the traditional technology as well.”

Any FVL partnership should not be like that of previous programs, Cutillo said.

European industry has already begun the development of high-speed rotorcraft, such as Leonardo’s AW609 tiltrotor, Airbus’ X3 compound helicopter and a future development of the latter, the Rapid And Cost-Efficient Rotorcraft (RACER). But so far they are targeted to the commercial market.

An Airbus proposal for FARA, believed to use the X3 technology, was rejected earlier this year, with only U.S.-based companies awarded contracts. The Italian military is said to be interested in purchasing the Leonardo tiltrotor. But contractual limitations imposed by Bell, which was previously a partner on the AW609, stipulate that the aircraft cannot be offered with armaments. It is unclear whether these limitations extend to future tiltrotor models.

Leonardo is investigating future tiltrotor technologies through the European Union Clean Sky 2 program, with a technology demonstrator, the Next Generation Civil Tilt Rotor, due to fly in 2023.


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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 13 Oct 2019 22:45

Image

The first Next Generation Jammer Mid-Band (NGJ-MB) engineering development model pod delivered to the Navy is fit checked on an EA-18G Growler in September. The fit check verifies the pod securely attaches to the Growler in preparation for flight tests scheduled to begin later this year. Airborne Electronic Attack program office (PMA-234) is carrying out testing of the NGJ-MB. NGJ-MB is a high-capacity and power airborne electronic attack weapon system for the Growler designed to protect air forces by denying, degrading and disrupting threat radars and communication devices. (U.S. Navy photo)

LINK

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 14 Oct 2019 17:16

Philip wrote:The US has already begun work on a 6th-gen fighter concept to enter service post 2030 replacing F-22s and F-35s.Brainstorming is going on to work out what exotic tech. is required and the sensors and weapon systems required.Britain and France ard also working on their 5+ concepts.When and where our AMCA will slot in is the
$B Q. Will it be dated upon arrival as 5th-gen fighters of 3 nations are flying as of now.


The US programs will likely not end up replacing anything but acting as a complement. The F-22A fleet is going to be in service till beyond 2050 and the USAF will be buying F-35A's through 2038 with the fleet remaining in service till well into 2070. Next Generation Air Dominance will begin replacing F-15 aircraft but on the whole, it along with its system of systems will be the third element of a family of capabilities that support the penetrating mission needs -

- Penetrating ISR <---- RQ-180
- Penetrating LR Strike Bomber <---- B-21
- Penetrating Counter Air <--- Next Gen. Air Dominance program

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 14 Oct 2019 17:30



Lockheed/Sikorsky have revealed their entrant into the FARA competition. It's based on their smaller S-97 Raider (though appears quite a bit larger) which is currently flying and derives its technology form their X-2 platform that shares tech across both FARA and FLARA -

As expected, in contrast to Bell's lower risk offering, Sikorsky is going for the upper right hand corner of all the requirements - Faster speed, higher survivability and likely greater range. It seems internal weapons, and even an internal cannon is aimed at both enabling faster cruise speeds and better signature even though Low RCS is not a key-performance-parameter. The IWB is also much larger than those that Bell is offering which could suggest that 8-12 Hellfire rounds could be carried internally. Interesting choice to go for side by side seating in the cockpit as well. Would be interesting to see a size comparison with the Bell Invictus 360 but tough to see how Sikorsky can produce this at the same cost as Bell's design - It would have to knock the socks off the competition when it comes to performance to justify paying the additional cost (that comes with size and weight).

Analysis and additional information :

Behold Sikorsky's "Raider X" Future High-Speed Armed Reconnaissance Helicopter


Image

There are now 5 teams that were down selected to submit their proposals for the prototype stage. A downselect to 2 is expected next summer with a late 2020 contract award to two companies to go ahead and develop 1 prototype each and fly it by 2023. Once the results of those fly-offs are in, along with other submissions the US Army will select a winner in the 2024-2025 time-frame...It seems quite likely that both Bell and Sikorsky will get funded to build one prototype each for the fly-off. Boeing's compound Apache dream will likely not be going anywhere anytime soon..
Last edited by brar_w on 14 Oct 2019 18:41, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 14 Oct 2019 17:58

^^ Aviation Week's Analysis :

Sikorsky Unveils Raider-X Proposal For FARA Armed Scout


The coaxial rigid-rotor compound helicopter is a development of the S-97 Raider prototype now in flight testing.

The Raider-X is about 20% larger, with a 14,000-lb. gross weight compared with 11,000 lb. for the S-97, and a 39-ft. rotor diameter compared with 34 ft. for the Raider. The Army requires a rotor diameter of no more than 40 ft. so that FARA can fly between buildings in urban combat.

The Raider-X will exceed the FARA’s threshold maximum speed of 180 kt. Sikorsky is not saying how fast it will fly, but notes the S-97 has reached 215 kt., and 207 kt. in level flight—exceeding the 205 kt. target in the Army’s initial capability document, says Tim Malia, director of Future Vertical Lift - Light.

The Army subsequently reduced the threshold maximum speed to enable a wider competition for the FARA program. But Malia says the greater speed and payload capability of Sikorsky’s X2 coaxial rigid-rotor compound configuration compared with a conventional helicopter provides growth capacity.

“We looked at a single main rotor helicopter for FARA, but it would be minimally compliant in the early 2020s. We need to be able to stay ahead of the threat into the 2030s and 2040s,” he says.

Bell is proposing a winged, single-main-rotor helicopter for FARA, while AVX Aircraft is offering a coaxial-rotor, ducted-fan compound. Boeing and Karem Aircraft have yet to unveil their concepts.

“Single main rotor will not be able to keep up. It’s already tapped out meeting the minimal FARA requirements. It does not have the ability to grow capability over time,” Malia says. “We didn’t want to pull out all the stops to be minimally compliant when we had X2 able to carry more payload and go faster.”

The Raider-X has four-blade rotors and a pusher propulsor. The coaxial rotors generate lift only on the advancing sides, eliminating retreating-blade stall and enabling higher speed. At high speed, 90% of the engine power goes to the propulsor, says Bill Fell, senior experimental test pilot. The propulsor is declutched at low speed to reduce noise.

The Raider-X closely resembles the S-97 prototype, with side-by-side seating. Compared with tandem seating, this improves crew coordination and situational awareness, Malia says. “And we can do it aerodynamically because of the robust performance inherent in X2. We are not trying to get out every last ounce of drag.”

Behind the cockpit is a large internal weapons bay. Internal carriage of missiles and unmanned aircraft—which the Army calls air-launched effects (ALE)—is a FARA requirement, but Malia says the cabin-like volume of Raider-X’s bay provides growth space for future, larger systems. “The minimum threshold works now, but what if in 2030 there is a new ALE that can be decisive, but can’t be carried?” he asks.

The Raider-X is powered by a single 3,000-shp-class General Electric T901 turboshaft—government-furnished equipment to all FARA bidders. “We do not have an additional engine to increase speed,” Malia says, referring to the supplemental power unit in Bell’s 360 Invictus. This augments power from the single T901 to give the single-main-rotor, tandem-seat Invictus a 185-kt. maximum speed.

“We use the power available and have a solid design built around it,” he says. “The T901 provides speeds out of the chute in excess of requirements and, as it improves, we can take direct benefit. We have a growth path to additional speed and payload as the T901 power increases.”

Sikorsky is using the industry-funded S-97 prototype to reduce risk for its FARA bid, conducting flight testing to validate design models and optimize the Raider-X. This includes flying new rotor blades designed to reduce drag and vibration. “We are getting exactly the results the models said,” Malia says.

With two rotor systems and a propulsor, Sikorsky is paying close attention to the Raider-X’s cost. “We have done a complete affordability analysis and design to cost. We are extremely confident we will come in under the cost goal,” he says.

Several divisions of parent company Lockheed Martin are part of Sikorsky’s FARA team, Malia says, including Aeronautics, Missiles and Fire Control and Rotary and Mission Systems. Swift Engineering will build the airframe if Sikorsky wins one of two FARA competitive prototype contracts scheduled to be awarded in March 2020. The Army flyoff is planned for 2023, with the first unit to be equipped by 2028.

“There is a critical cap in vertical lift, in attack/reconnaissance, and that gap is really impactful to the Army in the 2020s, ‘30s, ‘40s, even ‘50s. So there is a need for a long-term solution,” Malia says. “The threat is projected to evolve rapidly, so we require significant capability growth on our side to stay ahead. Raider-X can provide an asymmetric advantage in the 2030s-50s.”




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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 15 Oct 2019 17:34

Strategic, long-range cannon preps to jump its first tech hurdle

The U.S. Army is wading into a major science and technology development area to build a strategic, long-range cannon — one that can shoot a projectile 1,000 nautical miles — and plans to put the program through its first test soon, according to Col. John Rafferty, who is in charge of executing modernization efforts for the service’s top priority, long-range precision fires.

The Army is working with the Research and Analysis Center at White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico, as well as the Center for Army Analysis to confirm the service can accomplish what is expected from such a system, Rafferty told Defense News in an interview ahead of the Association of the U.S. Army’s annual conference.

The Army wants to demonstrate a prototype of the long-range cannon in 2023, after which it will make a decision on whether to begin a program of record.

The program is structured to pass through “big technology gates,” Rafferty said. “We’re about to knock down one of those gates with a test at [Naval Support Facility] Dahlgren, [Virginia], here very soon.”

If the program passes through that first gate — which Rafferty described as “early ballistic tests” — a report will go to Army leadership for approval.

But the technology needed to achieve such a capability is so cutting edge that it’s unknown whether that specific distance can be achieved at a cost that won’t break the bank.

For the Army, range will be king in operations against adversaries like China and Russia, who have each invested in defensive technologies. The combination of long-range air defense systems, artillery and coastal defenses with seamless integration of long-range, over-the-horizon radars will be difficult to counter, according to Rafferty.

“That integrated system challenges even our most sophisticated aircraft and challenges our most sophisticated ships to gain access to the area,” he said. “That layered enemy standoff at the strategic level was really the fundamental problem. One of the ways to solve that problem is to deliver surface-to-surface fires that can penetrate this [anti-access, area-denial] complex and disintegrate its network and create windows of opportunity for the joint force to exploit.”

That surface-to-surface capability can be delivered by the Army, he added.

There are two complementary systems that would be designed to penetrate enemy territory. There’s the hypersonic missile, which is technologically exquisite, will be expensive and the force “will probably never have enough of those,” Rafftery said. Then there’s the strategic cannon, which “will be able to deliver a volume of more affordable projectiles,” possibly 12, 16 or 20 in shorter order, to destroy a target, Rafferty said.

Each of the technology gates through which the Army will try to pass serves as a chance to assess if the capability is meeting lethality and cost goals. “This idea of volume and affordability and lethality is first and foremost in our minds,” Rafferty said.

“A lot of that comes down to cost,” Army Chief of Staff Gen. James McConville told Defense News in a recent interview. “If we are able to develop the strategic, long-range cannon system, the rounds may be only $400,000 or $500,000 compared to multimillion-dollar rounds. Cost does matter, and we are concerned about cost. There are some, definitely, physics challenges in doing these types of things, and that is the trade-off.”

The Army is “trying to be innovative, but what they have to do is demonstrate the capability at each phase along the way. And if that doesn’t happen, we are not doing it,” McConville added.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby ramana » 15 Oct 2019 19:13

brar_w, Jules Verne had a science fiction novel "From the Earth to Moon" which had a huge cannon to shoot a capsule to the moon!!!

Grew up reading the Classics Illustrated version!

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 15 Oct 2019 19:28

I too envisioned a really big cannon artillery system (Project Babylon) but apparently that is not necessarily the case here. The head of the LRPF portfolio has in the past mentioned that the system is going to have to be C17/C5 air-lift compatible, and while it is not going to be as mobile as say a LWH it will need to be theater re-deployable much the same as a THAAD battery for example. I think the reference to the $400-$500K cost target for the round does provide some insight into how it is expected to achieve the range..Also a data point was the acknowledgement earlier this year that the US DOS ruling gave the Army go ahead on this system even before the INF was in danger or eventually collapsed. This would suggest that it is unpowered, if it is powered it is powered for < 50% of its flight path, and if it is ballistic it is also ballistic for less than 50% of its trajactory (you have to build these things in to be INF compatible at >500 km range). Whatever tech. they are using is at a super super low T/I/M integration level hence the crawl-walk-run approach so it could be utilizing much less known/mainstream tech that most of us would envision.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 18 Oct 2019 19:36

Raytheon wins US Army’s LTAMDS prototyping contract


There was a question looming in the air during this year’s Association of the US Army 2019 (AUSA 2019) annual conference: which company would win the coveted contract to replace the Patriot air and missile defence radar? Just hours after the show ended, Raytheon announced that it had beat two competitors and received a USD384 million Lower Tier Air and Missile Defense Sensor (LTAMDS) prototyping contract.

Under the 16 October deal, the company will build six ‘360-degree capable’ LTAMDS prototypes for the service to test with the goal of reaching initial operational capability in fiscal year 2022 (FY 2022). The army will then reopen the competition during low-rate initial production (LRIP) and award the winner with a contract to build 16 LTAMADS radar systems, according to Bob Kelley, Raytheon’s director of domestic integrated air and missile defence programmes for business development and strategy.

“The real challenge here is to get after those kinds of threats and still be the size form factor to be able to be strategically deployable on a C-17 aircraft. That is the challenge,” Kelley told reporters.

Namely, the new radar needs to be able to defeat today’s threats such as cruise missiles, unmanned aerial vehicles, tactical ballistic missiles, and fifth-generation fighters, and “day after tomorrow threats” including additional countermeasures and weapons such as hypersonic glide vehicles.

Raytheon’s winning LTAMDS proposal is an active electronically scanned array radar with simultaneous 360° coverage that is powered by gallium nitride and includes digital receiver/exciter technology and digital beam forming software.
The radar is designed to support the Guidance Enhanced Missile - Tactical Ballistic Missile and the Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) Missile Segment Enhancement and will have the ability to interoperate with future army weapons, according to Kelley.

Additional team members include Crane Aerospace & Electronics, Cummings Aerospace, IERUS Technologies, Kord Technologies, Mercury Systems, and nLogic.

“When we first took a look at this problem … we actually first thought, ‘let’s do a Patriot radar upgrade; that would be the most affordable way to get this done and that would be the fastest way to get this done’”, Kelley explained. “We learned after not too long that with the threats the army wants to deal with in the future, we could not get to that with a Patriot upgrade; it required a brand-new bottoms up … radar.”

Army leaders shook up their LTAMDS design plans last year after Lockheed Martin and Raytheon beat Northrop Grumman and Technovative Applications for Technology Maturation & Risk Reduction phase contracts. Instead, they opted to reopen the competition through a ‘sense off’.

Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and Raytheon all participated in the revamped competition at White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico between May and June, and all told Jane’s that they submitted proposals. The teams had anticipated a final decision by 30 September, the end of FY 2019, but an official decision still hadn’t been announced by the annual AUSA show in Washington, DC, held from 14 to 16 October.

Instead, Brigadier General Brian Gibson, the head of the army’s Air and Missile Defense Cross-Functional Team, teased on 15 October that the service has made its LTAMDS decision and was now in contract negotiations but declined to reveal that the company was Raytheon.



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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 19 Oct 2019 22:32


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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 20 Oct 2019 07:26

Arun.prabhu wrote:I do agree that we need a iterative approach. The USAF is arguing for that now, after spending the wealth of their empire on the F35 and ending up with a costly, plane that is going to suck in any war. (I can't wait for Brar_W to tell me how the F35 is not a white elephant. LOL) They want planes off COTS and established technologies that can be developed in as little as five years with multiple new models of warplanes, each of which would build on the predecessors technologies and all of which would be ordered in small quantities (small for USAF, that is)


The US spends far less on acquiring or developing 5th generation fighters and using that to recapitalize their legacy fleet than most anyone else doing the same with either 4th or 5th gen. aircraft. That is just a fact and easily verifiable. Look at how much the French spent on the Rafale or what the Euro-partner nations spent on the Typhoon or what Sweden has on the Gripen_E. The tactical fighter modernization of all their respective users (including export customers) eats up far far more of their National Security spending than the USAF's fighter fleet recapitalization. The F-35 being ordered today costs less than a Rafale, or Typhoon. The global F-35 fleet continues to grow at a rate that matches or exceeds all 4.5 generation aircraft put together and it continues to pick up orders from new customers, and follow-on plus ups from existing customers. It has even been used in active combat on multiple occasions now by multiple operators.

The F-35 also uses COTS unless you did not know that. The "as little as 5-years..." claim is also highly misleading and comes from a Narcissistic USAF acquisition boss who wants to achieve that because "he gets to set the rules of how they count". The USAF has been working on a 6th generation aircraft technologies for more than 5 year. The program's technology development phase was established during the Obama-Era with one of the leading program managers over the last decade, tapped to head a special office created for the same under the watchful eyes of the then DARPA boss. There is an unclassified investment trail (extending well into multiple Billions of dollars) and at least one tacit admission from the number 3 person at the Pentagon (in 2016/17) that technology demonstrations have been sanctioned. They have another 5 years of that funded with money allocated to develop technology. Rest-assured, the road to a 6th generation aircraft is a long and winding one that will on the net consume nearly 2 decade of basic Science and Technology investment and program specific R&D. There is no magic-wand that anyone can wave and dish up a 6th generation fighter. Assuming they meet the 2030 deadline they would have been 15 years into the program. Of course it is difficult to gauge the actual level of cooperative technology programs because the B-21 will likely introduce some technologies that will eventually make their way on the NGAD so the technology investment timeframe is even wider. The "aircraft every five year" goal is a PR stunt and refers only to prototyping and getting stuff out there. It does not count what time, $$ and effort went into developing technology that provides a leap ahead capability..Basic S&T and R&D in support of a product that surpasses what is currently out there is not easy. You cannot start or stop at your wish and can't accelerate even if you throw money at it. It is a process that takes time..hence you plan ahead which is exactly what the US DOD did back in 2015 five years or so into when Bob Gates restructured the LRS-B (B-21) program.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby Arun.prabhu » 20 Oct 2019 10:44

Do you mean the unit manufacturing cost or the acquisition cost, which includes dev costs as well? Or do you mean the total estimated life cost of the F35?

Want to bet which one would be cheaper if all four planes had the same order quanities? I'd say the Griphen. Take economies of scale out and your white elephant becomes very costly very fast. Imagine a F35 order number of 200 planes with that prohibitive development cost, the expensive running costs, etc.

As to being used against enemies, yeah, they have been used to bomb in Syria, Iraq and elsewhere. Iraq doesn't have a first rate AD umbrella, the Arabs manning Iraq AD aren't first rate troops and unlike America and Turkey and Israel, the Russians have been trying to avoid direct engagements with all three units. I'd love to see how the F35 performs in an actual campaign, with active front line Russian AD umbrella and air assets deployed, with the Russians following wartime ROE...

"As little as five years" is different from "always five years." Do you want to come up with an actual reasoned argument or do you want to attack this unnamed planner and ignore the advantages of his iterative approach? Faster time to front line, smaller scope so lower risk, real world feedback on what works and does not, etc...

As to F35 COTS, how much by value or SKU percentage of the F35 is COTS? Please tell us. Harris Corporation, which was selected to upgrade F35s as part of TR3 is going to develop Integrated Core Processor off COTS that will have lifetime savings of 3 billions out of three hundred or more billion USD. So, again, tell us how F35 is COTS friendly.

brar_w wrote:
Arun.prabhu wrote:I do agree that we need a iterative approach. The USAF is arguing for that now, after spending the wealth of their empire on the F35 and ending up with a costly, plane that is going to suck in any war. (I can't wait for Brar_W to tell me how the F35 is not a white elephant. LOL) They want planes off COTS and established technologies that can be developed in as little as five years with multiple new models of warplanes, each of which would build on the predecessors technologies and all of which would be ordered in small quantities (small for USAF, that is)


The US spends far less on acquiring or developing 5th generation fighters and using that to recapitalize their legacy fleet than most anyone else doing the same with either 4th or 5th gen. aircraft. That is just a fact and easily verifiable. Look at how much the French spent on the Rafale or what the Euro-partner nations spent on the Typhoon or what Sweden has on the Gripen_E. The tactical fighter modernization of all their respective users (including export customers) eats up far far more of their National Security spending than the USAF's fighter fleet recapitalization. The F-35 being ordered today costs less than a Rafale, or Typhoon. The global F-35 fleet continues to grow at a rate that matches or exceeds all 4.5 generation aircraft put together and it continues to pick up orders from new customers, and follow-on plus ups from existing customers. It has even been used in active combat on multiple occasions now by multiple operators.

The F-35 also uses COTS unless you did not know that. The "as little as 5-years..." claim is also highly misleading and comes from a Narcissistic USAF acquisition boss who wants to achieve that because "he gets to set the rules of how they count". The USAF has been working on a 6th generation aircraft technologies for more than 5 year. The program's technology development phase was established during the Obama-Era with one of the leading program managers over the last decade, tapped to head a special office created for the same under the watchful eyes of the then DARPA boss. There is an unclassified investment trail (extending well into multiple Billions of dollars) and at least one tacit admission from the number 3 person at the Pentagon (in 2016/17) that technology demonstrations have been sanctioned. They have another 5 years of that funded with money allocated to develop technology. Rest-assured, the road to a 6th generation aircraft is a long and winding one that will on the net consume nearly 2 decade of basic Science and Technology investment and program specific R&D. There is no magic-wand that anyone can wave and dish up a 6th generation fighter. Assuming they meet the 2030 deadline they would have been 15 years into the program. Of course it is difficult to gauge the actual level of cooperative technology programs because the B-21 will likely introduce some technologies that will eventually make their way on the NGAD so the technology investment timeframe is even wider. The "aircraft every five year" goal is a PR stunt and refers only to prototyping and getting stuff out there. It does not count what time, $$ and effort went into developing technology that provides a leap ahead capability..Basic S&T and R&D in support of a product that surpasses what is currently out there is not easy. You cannot start or stop at your wish and can't accelerate even if you throw money at it. It is a process that takes time..hence you plan ahead which is exactly what the US DOD did back in 2015 five years or so into when Bob Gates restructured the LRS-B (B-21) program.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 20 Oct 2019 11:34

Arun.prabhu wrote:Do you mean the unit manufacturing cost or the acquisition cost, which includes dev costs as well? Or do you mean the total estimated life cost of the F35?


Nations buy capability. When you are buying a tactical aircraft, or building a fleet of aircraft you are doing so based on your capacity to field a quantity and quality that you need to meet your national security and defense objectives, balanced with what you can afford to spend on it. An $80 Million F-35A and a $100 Million Rafale are not remotely comparable when you factor in the fact that the French have a fraction of the defense budget of the US. On a net, they spend considerably more to develop, field and operate a modern tactical fighter capability. Of course, they also operate an inferior product as they chose not to go down the path of developing a 5th generation VLO platform. Life Cost Analysis only exists for one of those aircraft (i.e. a comprehensive 55-60 year sustainment, operations, upgrades and manpower cost for not only the aircraft but also all of its components including mission systems, simulators, live and virtual training environs etc). It is so difficult to predict that it essentially looses value for comparative purposes as it is based on individual user sustainment needs which are not the same.

Arun.prabhu wrote:Want to bet which one would be cheaper if all four planes had the same order quanities? I'd say the Griphen. Take economies of scale out and your white elephant becomes very costly very fast. Imagine a F35 order number of 200 planes with that prohibitive development cost, the expensive running costs, etc.



That sort of fuzzy math does not work in real life because when a decision is made to pursue a particular weapons system and put it through development, production and induct it..you start by looking at three things (what capability do you need to defeat a certain threat, what is the quantity you need it based on goals (is this replacing an outgoing capability or is it a new addition), and what can you afford without having to chop off other planned capability) and striking a balance that is affordable.

EOS cannot be " taken out" because aircraft (or any weapon system) are not designed in, and aircraft programs are not initiated in, a vacuum such as the type that may exist in fantasy land where all aircraft are produced over a quantity of 200 just so that a forum post can compare. You design based on an underlying understanding and assumption of what your demand looks like (a combination of best baseline estimates for fleet recapitalization, growth and export potential). This isn't something novel or a recent development. This is some pretty basic stuff.

You go out and build something that you can buy in the quantity that you need it in. You can't say I want to spend 99.9% of all my budget developing X and only buy 6 examples of it because I ran out of money. If you have low demand then you better fashion together a program that delivers value at a point where majority of your budget is consumed in recurring costs (the term "off the shelf" is apt here). You have to then, essentially give up on many aspects of performance and capability unless you are willing to completely gut other aspects of your defense spending. If you have high demand, your recurring to non-recurring cost ratio will look very different because EOS allows you to now take more risk with NRC and develop something more capable. This way, you now use your aggregated demand to invest in core technologies that will give you a bigger strategic competitive advantage that will last longer compared to someone who has low demand and a not so rosy export prospect and is therefore forced to go with lower technology that is more broadly available and mature. Notice why the Swedes never bothered developing a clean sheet engine for the Gripen despite their willingness to be as self reliant as possible? Why do you think that is?

Everything from requirements, capability trades, alternatives considered, and risk are based on an economic model which is influenced by two things " how many units of X are you are likely to need" and " how many units of X are you likely to produce on average". You develop a baseline estimate for Average Per Unit Cost and Program Acquisition Unit Cost. Both metrics are influenced by those two factors I mentioned earlier. If you a very low denominator (demand) then you have to adjust the performance of your the capability you are seeking to get those APUC/PAUC estimates to a threshold level or else you will never get approval to get your program off the ground. It then becomes unaffordable and the decision makers send you back to the drawing board (a recent example of this is the 2010 LRS-B re-structure by Bob Gates where the Next Generation Bomber requirements were deemed un-affordable and the entire program sent back to the planning stage to put together a Long Range Bomber that the US could afford based on a 100-150 production run).

How are these trades made? Performance is traded for cost using current and historic models..Many high end cost models are used in aerospace. Many of the advanced ones are proprietary to individual contractors and agencies (like US DOD's independent cost estimating agencies, NASA etc) but many simple ones are also available online if one digs around. One simplistic representation is used in the graph below (I've used this just for illustrative purposes). Performance dictates cost and production rates, and production quantities do as well in addition to whether you have enough of demand to apply say an 85% learning curve. Things like speed have been modeled as well as have RCS, Range, Weapons capacity, etc. etc. etc. With decades of data on LO aircraft you have a lot of access to these things that you can then use to develop a trade space. In fact the F-35 is itself a result of some of those trades. They chose mission radius over supercruise because the latter had a negative influence on unit cost while the former had a more favorable exchange. This was to be a "mass" fighter so that it could affordably be procured at triple digit rates per annum. And in fact they are nearly doing that as we speak. In 2019 the US services (all 3 operators) placed an order for 90+ F-35's, and are expected to order a similar number in 2020. That influenced design and performance requirements. If those production rates were predicted to be lower (based on demand) then even more capability would have been needed to be traded away. That doesn't lead you just a more affordable system. It also leads you to a less capable one but you strike a balance between what you can develop from a performance perspective (dictated by your technology readiness and threat) and what you can actually afford to buy.


Image


Notice how as production increases the unit cost gap narrows? This allows you to produce a more capable aircraft, with better specifications if you can aggregate demand, and have a long production run. This is exactly what the F-35's URF demonstrates..A 5th gen. VLO fighter with internal weapons bays, more internal fuel, heavier, and internal sensors that is still selling for a lower cost than many of its 4+ generation competitors. The far left (0-300 or so) of the chart also demonstrates why the French or the Swedes never bothered with a 5th generation program. With tiny demand and not great export prospects they would have spent a ton on Unit cost with a vast majority of their overall spend heading to NRC's.

If the demand only existed for 200 "Next Generation Aircraft" there would not have been an F-35 PERIOD. This is where your logic falls apart as do other similar arguments like " Russians could have produced it at half the cost (which totally disregards the true meaning of "cost") "

If the need was for only 200 new aircraft then that would have likely been met by the F-16U or some other derivative (like the Super Hornet). Capability and affordability go hand in hand. Because you have high demand, a need to produce aircraft at a high rate of production, and the ability to aggregate demand so that not only is the production rate high (north of 130 currently, and approaching north of 160 in a couple of years) you are also sustaining that for 10+ years. These conditions allow you to then chase higher requirements, take more developmental risk upfront and reap the rewards of higher performance at the tail end of that risk.

Same logic on the F-16. If the F-16 was a 200 aircraft production program, the F-16 as we know it would not have existed. Perhaps an upgraded 3rd generation aircraft or an F-15 derivative or F-20 would have been chosen.

Simply put, the USAF spends about $90 Million (presently) and will spend about $82 Million on the next lot of F-35A's because they have high demand, high export, and a shared platform that further enhances EOS and shared investments. Doing so allows them to basically acquire a 5th generation strike fighter at a lower unit cost than their peers and western allies are paying for 4+ generation aircraft. This in absolute values. When you get into relative amounts factoring in the purchasing power based on defense spending or other economic parameters the difference is even more stark. The US (all 3 services) is going to be purchasing around 130 fighters in 2020's budget. Out of these about 95 will be F-35's. Yet, the F-35 purchase comprises < 10% of the acquisition spend for the budget year (Cost of 95 F-35's / DOD FY20 Procurement CAPEX).

With cost as an independent variable, and quantity, performance, risk, and technology essentially dictating things like development cost, acquisition cost, and life-cycle cost you can trade one for the other.

So no, a Gripen or a Rafale are not "cheaper". The nations who have developed those aircraft, and bought them (including Brazil and other export customers) have paid a far greater share of their National Security and Defense acquisition budgets to acquire those fleets or to develop those capabilities in the first place. Even in absolute terms they pay as much, and in some cases even more to acquire a single unit of those 4+ gen. aircraft even though their defense budgets are a fraction in comparison. France has spent a ton of money to develop and acquire the rather small Rafale fleet it has. In fact, I'd encourage you to do a calculation of their overall development and procurement spend and see that as a percentage of there 10-year average annual defense budget.

Even at its peak production (variants headed to the USAF, USN and USMC only roughly 120-130 per annum), the JSF acquisition will still only represent around 10-11% of all US defense acquisition (i.e. just the DOD procurement budget not the overall budget which includes OPEX and R&D and other expenses to support other work). This, for a large time-period in the 2020's going to be something like 85+% of all fighters the US buys. Other nations spend a far greater chunk of their acquisition $'s during fleet-recapitalization buying equal or older generation capability.

Arun.prabhu wrote:As to being used against enemies, yeah, they have been used to bomb in Syria, Iraq and elsewhere. Iraq doesn't have a first rate AD umbrella, the Arabs manning Iraq AD aren't first rate troops and unlike America and Turkey and Israel, the Russians have been trying to avoid direct engagements with all three units. I'd love to see how the F35 performs in an actual campaign, with active front line Russian AD umbrella and air assets deployed, with the Russians following wartime ROE...


There are few aircraft in the world that meet your standards then. In fact, most are unproven. Yet, that does not stop those who operate them (like Israel, US, UK etc) from taking them to combat when required. They are doing it routinely now in addition to large force exercises and bi-lateral and multi-lateral training opportunities and peacetime forward deployment missions (Italian F-35A's are currently conducting NATO air-policing missions out of Iceland, and the USMC has more than a dozen F-35B's embarked on USS Americas for a 4-6 month deployment in the Pacific). Multiple other squadrons are deployed in the Pacific, in the Middile-East (Israel routinely uses its aircraft over hostile airspace) etc.

Arun.prabhu wrote:"As little as five years" is different from "always five years." Do you want to come up with an actual reasoned argument or do you want to attack this unnamed planner and ignore the advantages of his iterative approach? Faster time to front line, smaller scope so lower risk, real world feedback on what works and does not, etc...


It is not any special "iterative" approach like what you imply as in a deviation from past practices. (iterative is such a broad word that virtually all past developmental programs can be described as "iterative").

It is the very same approach that has been going on for the last 5+ years. That of developing a technology roadmap..executing it..maturing designs..developing technology demonstrators..proving technology demonstrators..and then as the technology is mature bringing it into the fold of a formal acquisition program. The USAF has been funding "6th generation technology" for more than half a decade now. A lot of it is out in the open.

They are on the third major adaptive engine development program (ADVENT (GE and RR funded), AETD (GE and P&W funded) and AETP (GE and P&W funded) besides other smaller programs, with the most recent one getting ready to test full up prototype engines next year. By 2023, the USAF (not including the US Navy) would have spent double digit billions on its 6th generation programs. A 2030-2032 fighter will follow a well mapped out roadmap of technology risk reduction and development that would have spanned 15-20 years by then. This not including any technology that gets ported from the B-21. It is a fallacy to claim that they will be able to iterate and develop something in five years. I don't need to come up with an "actual reasoned argument" because I have not heard one from you yet and if you continue to overlook clear evidence and programmatic activity, a lot (though not all) of which is out in the open then that is not my fault.

You can only iterate if you have a baseline. A capability leap requires cold hard investments in science and technology and basic research. That takes time which is usually measured in decades.

Any future 6th generation fighter the US fields will be on the back of nearly 2 decades of investment focused at getting those core technologies ready for prime time. To think otherwise is simply foolish..

As to F35 COTS, how much by value or SKU percentage of the F35 is COTS? Please tell us.


The same as * insert your favorite fighter* :roll:

Harris Corporation, which was selected to upgrade F35s as part of TR3 is going to develop Integrated Core Processor off COTS that will have lifetime savings of 3 billions out of three hundred or more billion USD. So, again, tell us how F35 is COTS friendly.


How much is/should a mission computer worth (as a % of total aircraft value)? COTS has a place in mission systems and as with many modern fighters, the F-35 uses it extensively including in its basic mission-system architecture. You don't buy a radar COTS. You can't buy a 5th generation engine COTS. You can't buy wideband RAM COTS and you can't buy many expensive Electronic Warfare components COTS (though you can for some and the F-35 does like many other programs). Your major cost drivers on a modern 5th aircraft are airframe material and labor cost, propulsion (10-20% of the cost to build), mission systems (since you are not buying them piecemeal and strapping on) and extensive organic EW capability. COTS plays a role in only some of those. Unless you recommend sticking an airline engine and a weather radar on a fighter in which case you should propose such a design in the "design your own fighter" thread.

https://arc.aiaa.org/doi/book/10.2514/4.105678

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby Arun.prabhu » 20 Oct 2019 22:06

brar_w wrote:
Nations buy capability. When you are buying a tactical aircraft, or building a fleet of aircraft you are doing so based on your capacity to field a quantity and quality that you need to meet your national security and defense objectives. An $80 Million F-35A and a $100 Million Rafale are not remotely comparable when you factor in the fact that the French have a fraction of the defense budget of the US. On a net, they spend considerably more to develop, field and operate a modern tactical fighter capability. Of course, they also operate an inferior product as they chose not to go down the path of developing a 5th generation VLO platform. Life Cost Analysis only exists for one of those aircraft (i.e. a comprehensive 55-60 year sustainment, operations, upgrades and manpower cost for not only the aircraft but also all of its components including mission systems, simulators, live and virtual training environs etc). It is so difficult to predict that it essentially looses value for comparative purposes as it is based on individual user sustainment needs which are not the same.


A better statement would be Air Forces waste Nation's wealth in the name of buying capability. Tell me, how exactly does winning a war in the air win the war on the ground? Iraq invasions 1 and 2, with extraordinarily disparate air forces arrayed against each other still required half a million troops on the ground in the first and an occupation of a decade with a hundred thousand plus troops in the second. What exactly did the Air Force achieve against "heroic" Arab forces? Or how about Vietnam? Fact is, 90% of nations on Earth would do very well with Mig 21 analogs or even prop driven planes. Also, tell me, how do these advanced tactical capabilities help with an air forces sole reason for existence, combat air support. If you want to talk smart weapons, tell me how many nations on earth have enough of an inventory to actually put smart weapons to sustained use on a battlefield? Spending a trillion USD on any warplane program is the height of folly.


brar_w wrote:That sort of fuzzy math does not work. EOS cannot be " taken out" because aircraft (or any weapon system) are not designed in, and aircraft programs are not initiated in, a vacuum.




Rafale development program was 45.3 billion Euros. F35 development was almost a magnitude larger. Were the technologies developed for F35 so advanced that 1 F35 packs the same fighting and bombing process as 10 Rafales? As for F35 and Rafale costs, you have it wrong. Flyaway cost of F35 is upwards of 100 mil USD for B and C variants, but less than 90 mil USD for Rafale B and C. USAF could have built how many more thousand Rafales for the price of the F35? Quantity does matter.

And what is this crap about VLO warplanes being better? Can the F35 sortie more than the Rafale? Does it have more range? More bombs or missiles while preserving VLO? Is Maintenance easier? Are operational costs lower? Is the logistical footprint smaller? By what measure do you call the F35 a better plane except in the sense that brief few hours it is in the air. And what few hours those are. One sortie per plane every three days. Are you going to ask the other side to not generate sorties and take a tea break while your mechanics work on getting the hangar queen into the air once again so that it can flaunt it’s VLO strut? No rational actor would take even a second which warplane is better. The Rafale wins hands down because while the F35 may shoot a couple of Rafales with missiles carried in its internal bays, the F35, being the hanger queen it is will have to return to hangar for its long break and the Rafale will pound the support infrastructure and possibly the F35 into smithrens.

brar_w wrote:Everything from requirements, capability trades, alternatives considered, and risk are based on an economic model which is influenced by two things " how many units of X are you are likely to need" and " how many units of X are you likely to produce on average". You develop a baseline estimate for Average Per Unit Cost and Program Acquisition Unit Cost. Both metrics are influenced by those two factors I mentioned earlier. If you a very low denominator (demand) then you have to adjust the performance of your the capability you are seeking to get those APUC/PAUC estimates to a threshold level or else you will never get approval to get your program off the ground.

How are these trades made? Performance is traded for cost using current and historic models..Many high end cost models are used in aerospace. Many of the advanced ones are proprietary to individual contractors and agencies (like US DOD's independent cost estimating agencies, NASA etc) but many simple ones are also available online if one digs around. Performance dictates cost and production rates, and production quantities do as well in addition to whether you have enough of demand to apply say an 85% learning curve. Things like speed have been modeled as well as have RCS, Range, Weapons capacity, etc. etc. etc. With decades of data on LO aircraft you have a lot of access to these things that you can then use to develop
a trade space. In fact the F-35 is itself a result of some of those trades. They chose mission radius over supercruise because the latter had a negative influence on unit cost while the former had a more favorable exchange. This was to be a "mass" fighter so that it could affordably be procured at triple digit rates per annum. That influenced design and performance requirements. If those production rates were predicted to be lower (based on demand) then even more capability would have been needed to be traded.


Nice essay, can you show us a comparison of F35 estimated total program costs at inception and the latest total projected costs? Please, please educate me about what features were considered so good that 1 sortie per 3 days is considered good enough for a frontline fighter that was intended to carry the workhorse of your Air Force. The 1 sortie every 3 days is from June/July 2019 from ME deployments, btw. What features were considered so good that the plane can’t dog fight, can’t act as a bomb tuck while preserving VLO, is twice as costly as the F16 to operate per hour...


brar_w wrote:If the demand only existed for 200 "Next Generation Aircraft" there would not have been an F-35 PERIOD. This is where your logic falls apart as do other similar arguments like " Russians could have produced it at half the cost (which totally disregards the true meaning of "cost") "


Because the US armed forces have managed procurement so well in the last few decades... Oh, wait, they haven't. The USN has its LCS, the USAF has it's F35 and the US army have their infantry weapons. So, tell us more about how the F35 program isn't a boondoggle.

brar_w wrote:If the need was for only 200 new aircraft then that would have likely been met by the F-16U or some other derivative (like the Super Hornet). Capability and affordability go hand in hand. Because you have high demand, a need to produce aircraft at a high rate of production, and the ability to aggregate demand so that not only is the production rate high (north of 130 currently, and approaching north of 160 in a couple of years) you are also sustaining that for 10+ years. These conditions allow you to then chase higher requirements, take more developmental risk upfront and reap the rewards of higher performance at the tail end of that risk.

Same logic on the F-16. If the F-16 was a 200 aircraft production program, the F-16 as we know it would not have existed. Perhaps an upgraded 3rd generation aircraft or an F-15 derivative or F-20 would have been chosen.



The F35 was supposed to be cheap to acquire and operate. The F35 costs more than average for fighter planes and what is its per hour flying cost - twice or thrice that of the F35. Superb cost structure that. The F16, the plane that the F35 is designed to replace, can fly 36 hours a month. Care to answer how many hours can an F35 fly and why three or more F35s to generate the same number of sorties as an F16 makes F35 cheaper?

brar_w wrote:Simply put, the USAF spends about $90 Million (presently) and will spend about $82 Million on the next lot of F-35A's because they have high demand, high export, and a shared platform that further enhances EOS and shared investments. Doing so allows them to basically acquire a 5th generation strike fighter at a lower unit cost than their peers and western allies are paying for 4+ generation aircraft. This in absolute values. When you get into relative amounts factoring in the purchasing power based on defense spending or other economic parameters the difference is even more stark. The US (all 3 services) is going to be purchasing around 130 fighters in 2020's budget. Out of these about 95 will be F-35's. Yet, the F-35 purchase comprises < 10% of the acquisition spend for the budget year (Cost of 95 F-35's / DOD FY20 Procurement CAPEX).

With cost as an independent variable, and quantity, performance, risk, and technology essentially dictating things like development cost, acquisition cost, and life-cycle cost you can trade one for the other.

So no, a Gripen or a Rafale are not "cheaper". The nations who have developed those aircraft, and bought them (including Brazil and other export customers) have paid a far greater share of their National Security and Defense acquisition budgets to acquire those fleets or to develop those capabilities in the first place. Even in absolute terms they pay as much, and in some cases even more to acquire a single unit of those 4+ gen. aircraft even though their defense budgets are a fraction in comparison.

Even at its peak production (variants headed to the USAF, USN and USMC only roughly 120-130 per annum), the JSF acquisition will still only represent around 10-11% of all US defense acquisition. This, for a large time-period in the 2020's going to be something like 85+% of all fighters the US buys. Other nations spend a far greater chunk of their acquisition $'s during fleet-recapitalization buying equal or older generation capability.


What you’re boasting is USAF have the money to waste and so we do. LMAO Okay. That makes so much military sense. ROTFLOL

brar_w wrote:There are few aircraft in the world that meet your standards then. In fact, most are unproven. Yet, that does not stop those who operate them (like Israel, US, UK etc) from taking them to combat when required. They are doing it routinely now in addition to large force exercises and bi-lateral and multi-lateral training opportunities and peacetime forward deployment missions (Italian F-35A's are currently conducting NATO air-policing missions out of Iceland, and the USMC has more than a dozen F-35B's embarked on USS Americas for a 4-6 month deployment in the Pacific). Multiple other squadrons are deployed in the Pacific, in the Middile-East (Israel routinely uses its aircraft over hostile airspace) etc.


Tell us how the USAF is so confident about the F35 that the US government absolutely forbids anyone and everyone from acquiring the S400, S500, series Air Defense systems. Tell us more about the F35’s virtues. I can see the USP: Any skies except the ones with proper first rate air defense systems.

brar_w wrote:It is not any special "iterative" approach like what you imply as in a deviation from past practices. (iterative is such a broad word that virtually all past developmental programs can be described as "iterative").

It is the very same approach that has been going on for the last 5+ years. That of developing a technology roadmap..executing it..maturing designs..developing technology demonstrators..proving technology demonstrators..and then as the technology is mature bringing it into the fold of a formal acquisition program. The USAF has been funding "6th generation technology" for more than half a decade now. A lot of it is out in the open.

They are on the third major adaptive engine development program (ADVENT (GE and RR funded), AETD (GE and P&W funded) and AETP (GE and P&W funded) besides other smaller programs, with the most recent one getting ready to test full up prototype engines next year. By 2022, the USAF (not including the US Navy) would have spent double digit billions on its 6th generation programs. A 2030-2032 fighter will follow a well mapped out roadmap of technology risk reduction and development that would have spanned 15-20 years by then. This not including any technology that gets ported from the B-21. It is a fallacy to claim that they will be able to iterate and develop something in five years. I don't need to come up with an "actual reasoned argument" because I have not heard one from you yet and if you continue to overlook clear evidence and programmatic activity, a lot (though not all) of which is out in the open then that is not my fault.

You can only iterate if you have a baseline. A capability leap requires cold hard investments in science and technology and basic research. That takes time which is usually measured in decades.

Any future 6th generation fighter the US fields will be on the back of nearly 2 decades of investment focused at getting those core technologies ready for prime time. To think otherwise is simply foolish..
.


And yet, despite not needing to make reasoned arguments, here you are, full of hot air, defending a hangar queen and a bloody white elephant that your country thinks is so great it has to sanction every friend and foe for acquiring first rate air defense systems.

brar_w wrote:The same as * insert your favorite fighter* :roll:

How much is/should a mission computer worth (as a % of total aircraft value)?


Brar_W, you think I’m a fan of someother 100 million dollar warplane? I have used Rafale because it is contemporary, but I think it is a white elephant as well for all that it is a by far better fighter compared to the F35.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 20 Oct 2019 22:50

Arun.prabhu wrote:A better statement would be Air Forces waste Nation's wealth in the name of buying capability.


If you think that a nation investing in technology or the ability to establish, and maintain air-superiority, and to hold targets at risk is not required then by all means all this is a waste as is 99.9% of the capability acquired by everyone else. Hope you propagate that view across other discussions and debates on this forum but I somehow doubt you will do that.

Arun.prabhu wrote:Tell me, how exactly does winning a war in the air win the war on the ground?


Glad you brought this up. I've now met someone who thinks winning air superiority as in "winning the war" in the air is useless because it does not win the war on the ground. Now you have to convince 99.99% of everone else here on BFR and pretty much 100% of all Combat Air Forces in the world of this. Good luck!

Arun.prabhu wrote:Iraq invasions 1 and 2, with extraordinarily disparate air forces arrayed against each other still required half a million troops on the ground in the first and an occupation of a decade with a hundred thousand plus troops in the second.


So investing in airpower is only effective if it eliminates the need to assemble large ground forces to accomplish military objectives. Got it.

Arun.prabhu wrote:Fact is, 90% of nations on Earth would do very well with Mig 21 analogs or even prop driven planes.


I surrender to those 'FACTS'..may the better prop driven plane advocates receive all the blessings in the world in pursuit of their endeavor to enlighten everyone with any sort of knowledge, experience or the power to make decisions.

Arun.prabhu wrote:Also, tell me, how do these advanced tactical capabilities help with an air forces sole reason for existence, combat air support


I didn't realize that AF's exist only for "Combat" Air Support. I was under the impression that they had a wide array of roles and responsibilities. Glad that I'm around for this lesson.

Arun.prabhu wrote:Rafale development program was 45.3 billion Euros. F35 development was almost a magnitude larger.


LOL. More fuzzy math.

Arun.prabhu wrote:As for F35 and Rafale costs, you have it wrong.


No I do not.

Arun.prabhu wrote:Flyaway cost of F35 is upwards of 100 mil USD for B and C variants, but less than 90 mil USD for Rafale B and C


The Rafale B and C are not comparable to the F-35B. Tell me the cost of a STOVL Rafale (call it whatever you want to) that can land on an L-Class ship, move from ship to shore and operate from forward basing to support ground forces deployed halfway across the world. Once you have that cost, enlighten everyone here of how you derived it and avoid fuzzy math. Most comparisons the world over are going to be between the Rafale and the F-35A and that is what is most often evaluated. The F-35B is a niche product and the F-35C is an even more niche product that is unlikely to exist with anyone besides the US DON. Yet both of them compare quite favorably to the Rafale despite offering higher capability (don't say stealth is not needed bla bla bla..The French themselves are pursuing a stealth fighter in partnership with the Germans).

Arun.prabhu wrote:Were the technologies developed for F35 so advanced that 1 F35 packs the same fighting and bombing process as 10 Rafales?


:rotfl:

Arun.prabhu wrote:Spending a trillion USD on any warplane program is the height of folly.


I was wondering when the "TRILLION" reference would drop. :rotfl: Cluless!

Arun.prabhu wrote:USAF could have built how many more thousand Rafales for the price of the F35? Quantity does matter.


How many Sopwith camels can the USAF build for every one Rafale? After all quantity does matter no? At the end of the day quantity is determined by mission effectiness and the war plans you are expected to be executed. You don't trade performance to get from 1000 aircraft demand to 10,000 aircraft demand if you don't need 10K aircraft. You find a number of aircraft your CAF needs to get its mission done, and the size of the AF your nation can afford..When you design an aircraft, you look at all those things. Performance, specifications, and quantity needed to achieve the desired mission success against the modeled threat scenarios. The end result is a balance of that. There is a balance involved. The IAF can probably buy multiple prop planes for each LCA. I guess the LCA investment is a waste by that stupid logic. The same applies for swapping SU-30's for LCA's, or swapping LCA's for AMCA's or basically cancelling the AMCA project and buying some off the shelp prop driven aircraft..It is seriously surprising that one has to explain those nuances in a Military and Defense focused forum.

Arun.prabhu wrote:And what is this crap about VLO warplanes being better?


Air-Forces and National Security decision makes the world over get to make that decision. Not someone sitting behind a keyboard. You must be looking at all these 5th and 5th+ generation programs sprouting up all over the world (US, Russia, China, India, S. Korea, Japan, Turkey, France, Germany, UK etc) and really pulling your hair out. If only they bothered to read your posts. Care to notice one common thread amongst nearly all of them - Application of VLO shaping and materials (and enablers like IWB) principles. But of course it is a possibility that none of them know what you do. Idiots they surely are since they should be investing their resources on more efficient "prop planes".

Arun.prabhu wrote:Nice essay, can you show us a comparison of F35 estimated total program costs at inception and the latest total projected costs? Please, please educate me about what features were considered so good that 1 sortie per 3 days is considered good enough for a frontline fighter that was intended to carry the workhorse of your Air Force. The 1 sortie every 3 days is from June/July 2019 from ME deployments, btw. What features were considered so good that the plane can’t dog fight, can’t act as a bomb tuck while preserving VLO, is twice as costly as the F16 to operate per hour...


More non-sense. Using deployment ops temp and manipulating that to project as if this was in any way an indication of war time ops temp or demand. When US troops are deployed in theater in support of a COCOM they generate the sorties that are required off them. If an F-15 flies one combat sortie every 4 days in support of a COCOM need, this doesn't automatically mean that it is only capable of 1 sortie every 5 days. If the US generates X number of sorties using Y number of theater deployed assets in a COCOM, it does not automatically turn X into the maximum sorties generatable without reaching out to the the FP's for more. All it means is that they met a particular demand for a particular capability in support of the COCOM and their organic training while deployed. That's all.

Something as stupid as taking a at-sea deployment and its combat demand and dividing it over the duration of the deployment and projecting that as the maximum capability can only come from deep inside the gutters of POGO-land. Logic like that should not be part of a well informed discussion on anything..

Use a bit of common sense. It helps.

Arun.prabhu wrote:what features were considered so good that 1 sortie per 3 days is considered good enough for a frontline fighter that was intended to carry the workhorse of your Air Force.


Ever care to look at actual demonstrated performance data? Or is that too much for you?

F-35A - 3.4 IS 3.0 SS 2.0 WS ASD of 2.5
F-35B - 5.5 IS 4.0 SS 2.0 WS ASD of 1.1
F-35C - 3.9 IS 3.0 SS 1.0 WS ASD of 1.8

All the data fit smack in the middle of specified Objective and Threshold KPPs for the program.

Tell us how the USAF is so confident about the F35 that the US government absolutely forbids anyone and everyone from acquiring the S400, S500, series Air Defense systems. Tell us more about the F35’s virtues. I can see the USP: Any skies except the ones with proper first rate air defense systems.


Each nation is well within its rights from denying the sale of its cutting edge technology if it feels risk to its security or it feels that the nation acquiring it does not share sufficiently close strategic relationship to warrant such a thing. F-35 users aren't denied from engaging Air Defense systems in a conflict. The US has the absolute right to limit F-35 sales to Turkey if it feels that it will end of comprising its own investments just as the MOD/IAF has a right not to sell sensitive military equipment to users of high end Chinese products or products that share heritage with what Pakistan has control over.

Arun.prabhu wrote:Care to answer how many hours can an F35 fly and why three or more F35s to generate the same number of sorties as an F16 makes F35 cheaper?


:roll:

Arun.prabhu wrote:What you’re boasting is USAF have the money to waste and so we do. LMAO Okay. That makes so much military sense. ROTFLOL


No. What I'm saying is that nations with a 1/10 th of the US defense budget are spending more per unit to acquire a tactical fighter and are spending way more than the US to obtain a lesser capability. I think most folks here would be able to do the math as long as they weren't analyzing the value of prop planes vs jet fighters in support of fleet acquisition decisions.

Arun.prabhu wrote:Brar_W, you think I’m a fan of someother 100 million dollar warplane? I have used Rafale because it is contemporary, but I think it is a white elephant as well for all that it is a by far better fighter compared to the F35.


Of course everything is a white elephant because Air Forces only need to provide combat air support and anything better than a basic MiG-21 is an overkill for pretty much everyone. Actually, I take that back. Even a MiG-21 is an overkill since a "prop driven plane" would suffice for most. After all it isn't like an AF is tasked with establishing Air Superiority or anything crazy like that.

I hope you really take this message and make sure its drilled down in the AMCA, LCA, Su-30 and other threads where the IAF is looking to acquire high end technology and capability. But with the Rafale coming in, the MWF the next decade, Super 30 upgrades and the IAF going all in on the AMCA it seems the IAF is headed in a direction totally opposite of what you think it ought to but entirely consistent with what others are doing as well when most of the IAF needs a prop plane instead of a jet fighter.


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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby Arun.prabhu » 21 Oct 2019 10:01

brar_w wrote:If you think that a nation investing in technology or the ability to establish, and maintain air-superiority, and to hold targets at risk is not required then by all means all this is a waste as is 99.9% of the capability acquired by everyone else. Hope you propagate that view across other discussions and debates on this forum but I somehow doubt you will do that.


Did I argue against investing in technology? Did I? I argued against wasting a nation's wealth on the Air Force. And I have spoken out against Rafale purchase by the IAF before for all that is it an effective plane. It is too expensive and IAF will find it hard and very expensive to replace combat loses and thus may not use them as aggressively as they could be.

brar_w wrote:Glad you brought this up. I've now met someone who thinks winning air superiority as in "winning the war" in the air is useless because it does not win the war on the ground. Now you have to convince 99.99% of everone else here on BFR and pretty much 100% of all Combat Air Forces in the world of this. Good luck!


What has the mighty USAF wrought in Afghanistan, Iraq, Kuwait, Vietnam, S. Korea? Go on, educate us mere mortals. I'll crouch here shivering in awe by the light of your and USAF's magnificence while you do.

brar_w wrote:So investing in airpower is only effective if it eliminates the need to assemble large ground forces to accomplish military objectives. Got it.


Yep. If you did not know that the ultimate objective is on the ground, why are you on any military forum discussing military technologies? A well prepared force will always be able to spoof the opposition in the air because even after the opposition achieves total control of the skies ordnance delivered through the air will be limited to those times when the warplanes are in the air and in range, which isn’t nearly enough.

brar_w wrote:I surrender to those 'FACTS'..may the better prop driven plane advocates receive all the blessings in the world in pursuit of their endeavor to enlighten everyone with any sort of knowledge, experience or the power to make decisions.


You know, I'm reminded of a couple of exercises that the American armed forces conducted. Something about Iranian small boats swarming a carrier task force and sinking it or rendering the whole damn thing combat ineffective.

And the second one from a first hand witness:
https://www.quora.com/Does-the-military ... operations

Read the link. It is informative.

My point: Not only armchair generals, but real generals circle jerk. And this nonsense about owning the best, fastest, stealthiest platform is just another kind of circle jerk and ignores realities.

brar_w wrote:I didn't realize that AF's exist only for "Combat" Air Support. I was under the impression that they had a wide array of roles and responsibilities. Glad that I'm around for this lesson.


Again, tell me, how many wars has the USAF won through air superiority? But then, the USAF and most other air forces like to pretend CAS isn’t the core mission, but establishing air superiority and dominance is. Kind of how heavy cavalry looked down upon mere infantry in days of yore. CAS is the core mission.

brar_w wrote:LOL. More fuzzy math.


Okay. LMAO

brar_w wrote:No I do not.


Cite on F35 and Rafale costs then. I got mine from wiki. You got anything?

brar_w wrote:The Rafale B and C are not comparable to the F-35B. Tell me the cost of a STOVL Rafale (call it whatever you want to) that can land on an L-Class ship, move from ship to shore and operate from forward basing to support ground forces deployed halfway across the world. Once you have that cost, enlighten everyone here of how you derived it and avoid fuzzy math. Most comparisons the world over are going to be between the Rafale and the F-35A and that is what is most often evaluated. The F-35B is a niche product and the F-35C is an even more niche product that is unlikely to exist with anyone besides the US DON. Yet both of them compare quite favorably to the Rafale despite offering higher capability (don't say stealth is not needed bla bla bla..The French themselves are pursuing a stealth fighter in partnership with the Germans).


Is the name of the model F35? Then what have you to complain about? If you are going to compare missions, then F35 has no equal, because no plane is as bad at not fulfilling missions. I point you again to the 1 sortie per three days rate. ROTFLOL

brar_w wrote:I was wondering when the "TRILLION" reference would drop. :rotfl: Cluless!


Now total acquisition cost better than 400 billion USD. Total operational costs: 1.1 trillion USD. Wow. I’m so clueless. Clue me in, your geniusness.

brar_w wrote:How many Sopwith camels can the USAF build for every one Rafale? After all quantity does matter no? At the end of the day quantity is determined by mission effectiness and the war plans you are expected to be executed. You don't trade performance to get from 1000 aircraft demand to 10,000 aircraft demand if you don't need 10K aircraft. You find a number of aircraft your CAF needs to get its mission done, and the size of the AF your nation can afford..When you design an aircraft, you look at all those things. Performance, specifications, and quantity needed to achieve the desired mission success against the modeled threat scenarios. The end result is a balance of that. There is a balance involved. The IAF can probably buy multiple prop planes for each LCA. I guess the LCA investment is a waste by that stupid logic. The same applies for swapping SU-30's for LCA's, or swapping LCA's for AMCA's or basically cancelling the AMCA project and buying some off the shelp prop driven aircraft..It is seriously surprising that one has to explain those nuances in a Military and Defense focused forum.


Don’t joke. You know USAF will never settle for a workhorse like Sopwith Camel. Gone are those days. Today, their flyboy prima donnas prefer hangar queens and pretending that CAS isn’t the sole mission of an Air Force and that everything else to do with air is to support and enable that core mission.

Here’s what I’d like the IAF to build thousands of:
viewtopic.php?f=3&t=5711&p=2130904#p2130904

I would add that since we’re pursuing automation to make an air defense variant of my fighter that is completely automated and whose sole purpose is loiter and play air defense.


brar_w wrote:Air-Forces and National Security decision makes the world over get to make that decision. Not someone sitting behind a keyboard. You must be looking at all these 5th and 5th+ generation programs sprouting up all over the world (US, Russia, China, India, S. Korea, Japan, Turkey, France, Germany, UK etc) and really pulling your hair out. If only they bothered to read your posts. Care to notice one common thread amongst nearly all of them - Application of VLO shaping and materials (and enablers like IWB) principles. But of course it is a possibility that none of them know what you do. Idiots they surely are since they should be investing their resources on more efficient "prop planes".


Wow. I’m so ashamed. Let me go over to that corner of the F35 hangar and whimper in shame while the mechanics spend 3 days getting it ready for the next sortie.

brar_w wrote:More non-sense. Using deployment ops temp and manipulating that to project as if this was in any way an indication of war time ops temp or demand. When US troops are deployed in theater in support of a COCOM they generate the sorties that are required off them. If an F-15 flies one combat sortie every 4 days in support of a COCOM need, this doesn't automatically mean that it is only capable of 1 sortie every 5 days. If the US generates X number of sorties using Y number of theater deployed assets in a COCOM, it does not automatically turn X into the maximum sorties generatable without reaching out to the the FP's for more. All it means is that they met a particular demand for a particular capability in support of the COCOM and their organic training while deployed. That's all.

Something as stupid as taking a at-sea deployment and its combat demand and dividing it over the duration of the deployment and projecting that as the maximum capability can only come from deep inside the gutters of POGO-land. Logic like that should not be part of a well informed discussion on anything..

Use a bit of common sense. It helps.


With all due respect, go blow hot air up someone else’s ass.

https://nationalinterest.org/blog/buzz/ ... -war-48312

Your super plane doesn’t want to get into the air. Perhaps the USAF will want to work with the US Armed Forces to change mission and doctrine so that future wars will be fought thusly:
1. US invites the enemy to the F35’s base.
2. Those F35s that can taxi that day will then smoothly taxi around the runway.
3. Shocked and Awed by the taxi, its style, its VLO characteristics, the enemy dies of pure envy.

The USAF can call this method of warfare blowhard warfare, hot air warfare or even peacock prima donna warfare. I’m partial to the first two because I see a lot of blowhards and hot air whenever F35 is brought up

brar_w wrote:Ever care to look at actual demonstrated performance data? Or is that too much for you?

F-35A - 3.4 IS 3.0 SS 2.0 WS ASD of 2.5
F-35B - 5.5 IS 4.0 SS 2.0 WS ASD of 1.1
F-35C - 3.9 IS 3.0 SS 1.0 WS ASD of 1.8

All the data fit smack in the middle of specified Objective and Threshold KPPs for the program.


Meaning entirely to be snide, were these all done on the ground?

brar_w wrote:Each nation is well within its rights from denying the sale of its cutting edge technology if it feels risk to its security or it feels that the nation acquiring it does not share sufficiently close strategic relationship to warrant such a thing. F-35 users aren't denied from engaging Air Defense systems in a conflict. The US has the absolute right to limit F-35 sales to Turkey if it feels that it will end of comprising its own investments just as the MOD/IAF has a right not to sell sensitive military equipment to users of high end Chinese products or products that share heritage with what Pakistan has control over.


The US has been objecting to the sale of Russian AD to anyone. Were they planning to sell F35s to Iran that they objected to rumors of the sale? Try the other one. Your VLO plane is naked.

brar_w wrote:No. What I'm saying is that nations with a 1/10 th of the US defense budget are spending more per unit to acquire a tactical fighter and are spending way more than the US to obtain a lesser capability. I think most folks here would be able to do the math as long as they weren't analyzing the value of prop planes vs jet fighters in support of fleet acquisition decisions.


And didn’t I say 90% of air forces don’t need a modern fighter? Keep up with the argument. Buying a plane is one thing. Training, maintenance, money to operate it, etc are all equally crucial. Countries that can’t tick mark all these for a plane shouldn't buy and operate it. Unfortunately, for the world’s most advanced country, the F35 fails the maintenance test. Horribly. America created a plane that they with all their technological knowhow and financial prowess can’t maintain and USAF generals are pretending that it is a fine beast, but it is a cow. To show you how big a cow, the USAF plans to operate 300 F16s until 2048 - close to forty years after the F35 entered production. The USAF is going to operate around 160-odd F15s because the F22s aren’t there in enough numbers.

brar_w wrote:Of course everything is a white elephant because Air Forces only need to provide combat air support and anything better than a basic MiG-21 is an overkill for pretty much everyone. Actually, I take that back. Even a MiG-21 is an overkill since a "prop driven plane" would suffice for most. After all it isn't like an AF is tasked with establishing Air Superiority or anything crazy like that.

I hope you really take this message and make sure its drilled down in the AMCA, LCA, Su-30 and other threads where the IAF is looking to acquire high end technology and capability. But with the Rafale coming in, the MWF the next decade, Super 30 upgrades and the IAF going all in on the AMCA it seems the IAF is headed in a direction totally opposite of what you think it ought to but entirely consistent with what others are doing as well when most of the IAF needs a prop plane instead of a jet fighter.


You can lead a Horse to water, but you cannot make it drink. As with horses, so with men.

Edits: corrected link and spelling mistakes.

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Re: US military, technology, arms, tactics

Postby brar_w » 21 Oct 2019 19:03

Arun.prabhu wrote: Here’s what I’d like the IAF to build thousands of:
viewtopic.php?f=3&t=5711&p=2130904#p2130904


Good luck boss!

Arun.prabhu wrote: Cite on F35 and Rafale costs then. I got mine from wiki. You got anything?


You know how many times I have provided context on the various cost metrics and the absurd "Trillion dollar" label? Most folks here who have been around for a few years know that. There is even a thread dedicated to it on this forum where I've done it probably a dozen or more times. It's tough to argue that if one wanted to actually educate oneself with the correct data, there isn't material available on this forum (forget the rest of the internet). Maybe even this thread. I'm not going to do your homework for you. If you chose to be ignorant, use data that are not comparable or think that 1 F-35 costs the equivalent of 10 Rafale's then you are on your own. Figure it out for yourself.

Arun.prabhu wrote:Wow. I’m so ashamed. Let me go over to that corner of the F35 hangar and whimper in shame while the mechanics spend 3 days getting it ready for the next sortie.


You do that. Meanwhile, those who actually know their stuff are hard at work developing and fielding VLO aircraft. But hey..who knows..perhaps the Cessna Skyhawk market is about to blow up.

Image

With all due respect, go blow hot air up someone else’s ass.

https://nationalinterest.org/blog/buzz/ ... -war-48312


Sorry..I'll pass on the POGO-land..

Arun.prabhu wrote:Meaning entirely to be snide, were these all done on the ground?


This is what happens when facts are presented that come from verified demonstrated performance that happen during routine SS operations.

You presented an absurd (or something quite normal from POGO) claim which was based on a quote from the squadron commander that went into the ops tempo they were tasked with during a cruise. The purpose of the cruise was not to just support combat operations but they did that for about 50 days out of a 4-6 month deployment. But, somehow someone at POGO twitsted that quote..did some fuzzy math and began attributing the result as somehow the best the F-35 can do.

And when you present actual proven, demonstrated performance data...CRICKETS!..I've spent a long time here on this forum trying to rebut the utter garbage POGO puts out and how it, as an organization, twists and distorts official data and anecdotal evidence to supports its ultimate objective (which should be crystal clear to those who are even remotely interested in knowing). If someone thinks that the F-35 can only generate 1 sortie every 3 days based on POGO math, then I don't think they are even open to being corrected or being convinced otherwise. Same with the absurd claim of 1 F-35 = 10 Rafales on cost.

I don't think I need to rebut POGO talking points anymore. Those few informed and knowledgeable members here who know their stuff on combat aircraft can look past that and figure things out.

Arun.prabhu wrote:The US has been objecting to the sale of Russian AD to anyone.


Yes and that is a strategic choice the US can make in addition to economic sanctions on Russia.

Arun.prabhu wrote: America created a plane that they with all their technological knowhow and financial prowess can’t maintain and USAF generals are pretending that it is a fine beast, but it is a cow. To show you how big a cow, the USAF plans to operate 300 F16s until 2048 - close to forty years after the F35 entered production. The USAF is going to operate around 160-odd F15s because the F22s aren’t there in enough numbers.


No one is pretending that it works when it does not unless of course one lives deep inside the POGO gutter. The F-35, by all accounts performs great and this extends to other operators around the world who are not only using it in combat missions but area also increasing their purchase quantities via follow on orders. Commanders of squadrons/units and pilots who fly it are its best judge and I think by now the cohort of F-35 pilots extends well beyond 500 globally. The MC rates are a concern but that is a transition phase and it will probably surpass the 75% mark by this time next year on its way to the 80% goal target. This too is not unprecedented. New types, especially when production is being expanded at a high rate as they are being inducted, something go through a curve as depot capacity catches up and spare part availability constraints fade away. The long term MCR will probably be in the 70-80% range during times when budgets are passed in a time bound fashion and dip to the 50-60% range when they are not (just like every other fighter in the USAF and USN)..

The USAF bought around 100 F-16's between the Mid 1990's and Mid 2000's. Those and some others will be retained because they have plenty of airframe hours left in them (especially in light of the recent work on F-16 airframe life extension) and because the F-35A does not need to replace all the fighters across the Active AF, Guard and Reserve. Certainly if a need is felt that even those need to be modernized future budgets can support that but for now, the POR is for 1763 F-35A's because that is what the USAF has determined it needs to fulfill the currently obligated missions. Similarly, the F-15E' are 18,000 hour air-frames and that fleet is not going anywhere. In addition to that, the DOD wants the USAF to buy 80 F-15EX and collectively the Strike Eagle type will continue to serve as these aircraft have (at baseline) a significantly longer airframe life than other USAF fighters. The F-15C has largely been offloaded to the ANG with the exception of a couple of squadrons. Those too will be gone in the next decade or so. The ANG aircraft will be retired and swapped out for Strike Eagles and will continue the DCA mission from CONUS and the Strike and DCA mission from OCONUS. They are perfectly suited for that, and in fact the F-15 (C or EX) is a better DCA platform, for the type of roles the ANG is to be utilized in, than both the F-22 and F-35.

Arun.prabhu wrote: You can lead a Horse to water, but you cannot make it drink. As with horses, so with men.


Of course. I think in this case, your problem may not be getting the horse/men to drink. There may be something wrong with the water itself.


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