International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

The Military Issues & History Forum is a venue to discuss issues relating to the military aspects of the Indian Armed Forces, whether the past, present or future. We request members to kindly stay within the mandate of this forum and keep their exchanges of views, on a civilised level, however vehemently any disagreement may be felt. All feedback regarding forum usage may be sent to the moderators using the Feedback Form or by clicking the Report Post Icon in any objectionable post for proper action. Please note that the views expressed by the Members and Moderators on these discussion boards are that of the individuals only and do not reflect the official policy or view of the Bharat-Rakshak.com Website. Copyright Violation is strictly prohibited and may result in revocation of your posting rights - please read the FAQ for full details. Users must also abide by the Forum Guidelines at all times.
Kartik
BRF Oldie
Posts: 4609
Joined: 04 Feb 2004 12:31

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Kartik » 05 Nov 2019 00:21

brar_w wrote:Indonesia Wants Two Squadrons of F-16 Block 72s


The Indonesia Air Force (TNI-AU) chief, Air Marshal Yuyu Sutisna, told local media that the service has inaugurated a plan to acquire two squadrons of Lockheed Martin F-16C/D Block 72 Vipers from 2020. He said that the purchase will be made in stages as part of the TNI-AU’s five-year strategic plan for 2020-2024.

“Purchasing that variant means we will have the most sophisticated F-16s,” said Yuyu. Indeed, the new jets would mean that the TNI-AU’s fleet will be on par with the Republic of Singapore Air Force’s F-16C/D/D+ fleet, which is currently undergoing a midlife upgrade program that will also include the installation of the Northrop Grumman APG-83 AESA radar and Link 16, with certification of the AIM-9X, JDAM, and GBU-39B small diameter bomb. Work began in 2016 and the first aircraft is expected to be ready in 2020. “Indonesia is a longstanding and valued partner,” added a Lockheed Martin statement. “We are committed to supporting the Indonesian Air Force and stand ready to support their future defense needs.”

Without giving more details, Yuyu also said that the TNI-AU is in the process of acquiring the Sukhoi Su-35 as a replacement for the withdrawn Northrop F-5E/F fleet, a program that has seen significant delays and sanctions that were thought to have jeopardized the deal.

The TNI-AU currently operates two squadrons of 33 F-16s, with 19 ex-U.S. Air Force F-16C Block 25s and five F-16D Block 25s as the backbone, delivered under the Peace Bima-Sena II program following upgrading in the U.S. to Block 52 standards. The six-year project commenced in 2011 and ended in December 2017, allowing the existing 3 Skadron Udara at Madiun to bolster its inventory with new aircraft, and the formation of 16 SkU at Pekanbaru.

Indonesia originally received 12 F-16A/Bs under Peace Bima-Sena I for 3 SkU in 1989-90, and nine of them are believed to remain operational. The TNI-AU’s other principal fighter unit is 11 Skadron Udara at Hasanuddin, which flies a mixed bag of 16 Su-27SKs, Su-27SKMs, Su-30MKs, and Su-30MK2 “Flankers.”


Was just about to post this same article. It could be an upgrade for the existing 33 F-16s or 2 squadrons that TNI-AU operates. New builds will stretch their limited budgets with other procurement programs planned as well.

The Indonesians are supposed to get Su-35s and 50 of the Indonesian variant of the KF-X as well. Their deliveries should begin by 2028 or there after, as I would guess.

brar_w
BRF Oldie
Posts: 7920
Joined: 11 Aug 2016 06:14

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby brar_w » 05 Nov 2019 04:20

The quote attribute to Yuyu Sutisna indicates 2 squadrons procured in the 2020-2024 time-frame with a request going out early next year. I believe only a small subset of their fleet is upgraded to 50/52 standard and some may be too old to even bother that upgrade. Lockheed has an active program for follow on sales to them and have in the past indicated them as potential customers (based on the business case for which they restarted the line in South Carolina). Of course this may not pan out and I certainty expect that between the F-16, Su-35, more Korean trainers and the KF-X something will have to give and they won't be able to have them all.
Last edited by brar_w on 05 Nov 2019 05:46, edited 1 time in total.

brar_w
BRF Oldie
Posts: 7920
Joined: 11 Aug 2016 06:14

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby brar_w » 05 Nov 2019 04:44

GA-ASI's Predator Series Aircraft Pass Six Million Flight Hours


SAN DIEGO – 04 November 2019 – General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA‑ASI) today announced that its Predator®-series of Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA), which includes the Predator, Predator B, Gray Eagle, Avenger® and MQ-9B SkyGuardian® lines, has surpassed six million flight hours. The milestone was achieved on October 31, 2019 with GA-ASI aircraft having completed 430,495 total missions with close to 90 percent of those missions flown in combat.

“Six million flight hours is a testament to the reliability of our unmanned aircraft systems that are designed, built, and sustained by a dedicated group of skilled and innovative professionals for operations around the world,” said Linden Blue, CEO, GA-ASI. “In our more than 25 years in business, GA-ASI has achieved a list of historic ‘firsts’ in RPA development and we have leveraged those accomplishments to better support our customer’s requirements.”

The identification of the specific aircraft and customer that achieved the milestone is unknown as every second of every day, 69 Predator-class Medium-altitude, Long-endurance (MALE) RPA are airborne throughout the world. Flight hours have continued to grow at unprecedented rates in recent years, with 500,000 flight hours achieved from 1993 to 2008, one million hours in 2010, two million hours in 2012, three million hours in 2014, four million hours in 2016 and five million in 2018.

“The demand for persistent situational awareness using our RPA is demonstrated daily through the accumulation of flight hours. The demand for our aircraft is consistently answered by our team of employees, suppliers, and partners who work hard to meet our customers’ dynamic mission requirements,” said David R. Alexander, president, GA-ASI. “Because of the dedication of our employees, our suppliers and partners, our aircraft have the highest mission capable rate in the USAF aircraft inventory.”

GA-ASI aircraft average more than 60,000 hours per month supporting the U.S. Air Force, U.S. Army, U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, NASA, the Italian Air Force, the Royal Air Force, the French Air Force, the UAE Armed Forces, and other customers. Missions include helping protect ground units on the battlefield; supporting U.S. Customs & Border Protection operations, and first responders in the wake of natural disasters. These aircraft systems continue to maintain the highest mission capable rates for U.S. Air Force and U.S. Army aircraft inventories.

GA-ASI has produced more than 900 aircraft and over 400 Ground Control Stations (GCS). In addition to RPA and GCS, GA-ASI also produces Processing, Exploitation and Dissemination (PED) systems as well as sensor payloads that deliver radar and video imagery, detect moving targets on the ground and over water, and provide Signal Intelligence (SIGINT) on signals of interest. GA-ASI also integrates the data products from these disparate sensors in real time via SATCOM data links to the GCS that can be correlated and displayed as actionable intelligence for use in Operations and Intelligence Centers around the world.

brar_w
BRF Oldie
Posts: 7920
Joined: 11 Aug 2016 06:14

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby brar_w » 05 Nov 2019 18:22

Airbus just lifted the lid on one of their prior S&T projects around Low Observables. Appears to be mostly a design exercise and doesn't look like a scaled variant ever left the wind tunnel and RCS measurement facilities (indoor or outdoor). This would serve as a good work up exercise for them on FCAS even though Dassault has actually flown a LO design and probably has more data and tools. Looks like a mash between Northrop's ESAV and its cranked kite and flying wing X-47 configurations. But a really good VLO option for a strike UCAV perhaps.

I guess stealth isn't dead after all :roll:

Airbus reveal #LOUT (Low Observable UAV Testbed) stealth aircraft. Development began in secret 2007, with contract awarded 2010. Diamond-shaped, 12 x 12 m (about Taranis-sized) platform shown to journos in anechoic chamber. Classified programme, but details & images to follow...LINK


The more astute among you will notice a canopy on the
@AirbusDefence
#LOUT unmanned stealth demonstrator. Told to test stealth properties of various transparencies, rather than indicative of a manned function. Vehicle designed to be LO against ground-based threats...LINK


Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image
Last edited by brar_w on 05 Nov 2019 18:36, edited 2 times in total.

JayS
Forum Moderator
Posts: 4370
Joined: 11 Aug 2016 06:14

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby JayS » 05 Nov 2019 18:32

Good to see a different form. Is it a subsonic aircraft..?? Looks like one from the design. But well, frankly there aint any such supersonic drones AFAIK. So its probably a foregone conclusion.

brar_w
BRF Oldie
Posts: 7920
Joined: 11 Aug 2016 06:14

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby brar_w » 05 Nov 2019 18:39

This appears to be designed around a subsonic requirement. But obviously was just a design effort aimed at developing and validating a competency. Perhaps it could see the light as a companion UCAV to the manned FCAS component. Design blends aspects of many other that have come before it..A-12 and some Northrop configurations from the past but probably also some Airbus's internal non disclosed projects..

Low supersonic drones do not make very much sense because you probably trade away lots of what you value in a UCAV vis-a-vis a piloted aircraft - Long range and high Loiter. Even the efficient supersonic configurations studied by AFRL earlier this decade pointed to significant compromises or increase in size and weight. So either you fly closer to Mach 0.9 for maximum efficiency, or aim to fly out to Mach 1.3+ which gets pretty difficult from a propulsion and range/payload standpoint for a supercruiser especially since UCAV's are designed with cost in mind (more so than manned aircraft).

High supersonic drones make sense for specific mission and China revealed theirs just a few weeks ago and Lockheed is supposedly working on one as well.

https://www.nextbigfuture.com/2018/01/l ... -sr72.html

Here's what they've shared on the FCAS schedule -

Image

Being at the mercy of governments in Germany, France and Spain and expecting a glitch free political process over the 2+ decade developmental timeframe for this project, does seem quite risky. It would be interesting how much control transfer actually occurs (vs what is claimed to have been agreed upon) and how they avoid similar type of issues as those that occurred on the much smaller, and much less riskier, EURO MALE project. Would have been better to say get a nEUron fielded in under a decade and then build on that success but alignment would have likely been impossible with the Germans. If they stick to this, it would seem that it wouldn't be till 2040 that many of the top European forces like Germany and France will begin fielding VLO in numbers (or any number). Thats a long wait and it is quite likely that even some of the smaller players around the world would have operational capability by then.

Kartik
BRF Oldie
Posts: 4609
Joined: 04 Feb 2004 12:31

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Kartik » 06 Nov 2019 02:05

brar_w wrote:The quote attribute to Yuyu Sutisna indicates 2 squadrons procured in the 2020-2024 time-frame with a request going out early next year. I believe only a small subset of their fleet is upgraded to 50/52 standard and some may be too old to even bother that upgrade. Lockheed has an active program for follow on sales to them and have in the past indicated them as potential customers (based on the business case for which they restarted the line in South Carolina). Of course this may not pan out and I certainty expect that between the F-16, Su-35, more Korean trainers and the KF-X something will have to give and they won't be able to have them all.


It would have to be the F-16 Block 72s that would have to go then..my understanding is that the Su-35 deal is going ahead, and they have already been spending on the KF-X program. They would jeopardize their work share on the program if they pulled out of the KF-X program or didn't pay their share, although they've been actively trying to re-negotiate the amount they will pay.

I see this as something like the Malaysian fighter program. It's been up in the air forever and budgetary constraints may preclude it ever being signed.

Kartik
BRF Oldie
Posts: 4609
Joined: 04 Feb 2004 12:31

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Kartik » 06 Nov 2019 02:10

From AW&ST

Marine Corps F/A-18 C/Ds to also get collision avoidance

With the Automatic Ground Collision Avoidance System (Auto GCAS) now proliferating into the U.S. Air Force’s F-16 and F-35 fleets, Naval Air Systems Command (Navair) is seeking industry input for the development of a similar safety capability to retrofit into the Marine CorpsF/A-18C/D force.

The move follows three years of grassroots efforts mostly led by Marine test pilots to pursue the development of some form of automatic protection system from ground collisions and comes five years after Auto GCAS was first introduced on the Air Force F-16 Block 40/50. Developed by the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), NASA and Lockheed Martin, the Auto GCAS system is now officially credited with saving at least nine pilots and eight aircraft.

In Auto GCAS, algorithms continuously compare the aircraft’s trajectory against a terrain profile generated from an onboard digital terrain elevation data unit. If the predicted trajectory touches the terrain and the system calculates the aircraft is in imminent danger of collision, it executes a last-minute automatic recovery maneuver. The system is designed to protect against accidents caused primarily by pilot disorientation or temporary incapacity due to high g.

According to industry sources the Navair solicitation is focused on achieving an Auto GCAS capability rather than acquiring a specific system. It is therefore expected to zero in on a software-based solution that will run a highly modified version of the current terrain awareness warning system (TAWS) algorithm in a retrofitted flight control computer. As well as the upgraded flight control computer, the overall system will introduce modified software to the digital map and mission computers and the amplifier control intercommunications system, Navair says.


The introduction of Auto GCAS, which will be retrofitted to the F/A-18C/D only, forms part of a final phase of upgrades for the Marine Corps Hornet fleet, which is gradually being replaced by the Lockheed Martin F-35B/C. Although the phase-out is not expected to be completed until 2030, the current aircraft continue to be upgraded with AESA radars, Link 16 datalinks and improved navigation capabilities such as RNP/RNAV for GPS approaches. In 2020 the aircraft also is due to be fitted with Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast Out capability.

JayS
Forum Moderator
Posts: 4370
Joined: 11 Aug 2016 06:14

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby JayS » 06 Nov 2019 02:16

brar_w wrote:
Being at the mercy of governments in Germany, France and Spain and expecting a glitch free political process over the 2+ decade developmental timeframe for this project, does seem quite risky.


Exactly my initial thoughts on the FCAS timeline. 2-2.5decades for EIS is is a long time. There are multiple risks involved apart from political ones. If the EFT can bring in some of the maturing technologies from FCAS program starting 2030, and if the UAVs come into service around the same time, and next generation fighter from US on horizon around 2040 (though we don't know if it will be exported at all), the need of FCAS in good numbers might lose steam.

BTW what is the status of the next-generation fighter program of the USAF..?? I expect it to be a true blue 6th generation fighter with a proper 6th generation engine on it, unlike the 5+ generation platforms like FCAS/Tempest. I don't see anyone other than the US having any visibility on 6th Gen engine, which I feel is the key enabler and differentiator for a 6th generation fighter.

brar_w
BRF Oldie
Posts: 7920
Joined: 11 Aug 2016 06:14

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby brar_w » 06 Nov 2019 06:05

Kartik wrote:
brar_w wrote:
It would have to be the F-16 Block 72s that would have to go then..my understanding is that the Su-35 deal is going ahead, and they have already been spending on the KF-X program.


Funny how it is so obvious as to which procurement project was going to go but that was not apparent to their Air Chief who basically said that the request/LO Intent would be going out early next year. :mrgreen: I think it is too early to tell how they will prioritize all this. Right now, there is very little investment in the KF-X. In fact it will likely stay minimal till perhaps very late next decade long after any potential F-16's and/or Su-35's would have been delivered.

brar_w
BRF Oldie
Posts: 7920
Joined: 11 Aug 2016 06:14

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby brar_w » 06 Nov 2019 22:26

Major Milestone: Norway declares IOC for F-35A


November 6th 2019 Norwegian air chief Brig. Gen. Tonje Skinnarland declared Norway's F-35As operational after completing a deployment in November meant to validate that they are able to operate the jets away from Norway's home base of Ørland Main Air Station.

Norway becomes the third European country to declare IOC, after the United Kingdom and Italy. – I would like to congratulate the Norwegian Armed Forces on declaring IOC with the F-35. This is a big day for the entire Armed Forces, says Norway’s Defence Minister Frank Bakke-Jensen.

With more than 455 aircraft operating from 20 bases around the globe, the F-35 is playing a critical role in today's global security environment. More than 955 pilots and 8,485 maintainers have been trained, and the F-35 fleet has surpassed more than 230,000 cumulative flight hours. Nine nations have F-35s operating from a base on their home soil and eight Services have declared Initial Operating Capability.

Over the last two years, the Norwegian Air Force has conducted intensive operational testing and evaluation (OT&E) of special Norwegian conditions such as winter operations, operations in the northern areas and cooperation with Norwegian Army, Navy and Special Forces.

To conclude the test period, the Norwegian Armed Forces spent several days transferring aircraft and equipment from Ørland Air Station to Rygge Air Station (close to the capital Oslo). Deployment of Rygge's fighter aircraft system includes technicians and other important personnel as well as necessary equipment in order to train and practice operations from there. This was the first time the fighter aircraft were operated from a base other than Ørland Air Station.

Next year Norway’s F-35s will deploy to Iceland to conduct air-policing efforts on behalf of NATO. Finally, by 2022, the Norwegian Air Force will have built up enough F-35s, pilots and maintainers in the country to let the F-35 take over the “quick reaction alert” mission, which calls for operators to stand on a 24/7 alert and scramble, if needed, to intercept aircraft flying near Norwegian airspace. These F-35s will be ready for air-policing in Evenes, Northern Norway.

Kartik
BRF Oldie
Posts: 4609
Joined: 04 Feb 2004 12:31

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Kartik » 08 Nov 2019 01:03

Badly needed piece of defensive equipment for all IAF fighters in the coming decade. Only the Rafale will come equipped with towed decoy as of 2020.

US Navy picks Raytheon and BAe for F/A-18 towed decoy

Image

The US Navy (USN) picked Raytheon and BAE Systems to develop and demonstrate competing versions of a dual-band towed decoy for its Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet fleet.

The service awarded Raytheon $33 million and BAE Systems $36.7 million to develop and demonstrate their next generation of decoys over a 27-month period, the USN says in a media release on 1 November.

Towed decoys are meant to trick an enemy missile into thinking it is tracking and targeting a fighter aircraft, when really it is aimed at the decoy. The decoys are dragged behind fighters using a long cable and create a larger radar cross-section than the aircraft it is protecting by emitting a deceptive pattern of radio frequencies.

Typically, towed decoys offer several layers of defence for their parent aircraft. Within the cable attaching the decoy to the fighter aircraft is a fiber optic line meant to help the two communicate and change electronic warfare tactics as the situation changes.

Initially, decoys are programmed to use their radio emitting abilities to jam and then confuse a radar’s ability to track a fighter aircraft. Sacrificing the decoy to an oncoming missile is seen as a last resort.

Raytheon and BAE Systems plan to develop enhanced versions of the decoys they already supply for the USN’s F/A-18E/F Super Hornet as part of the competition. For its part, BAE Systems manufactures the ALE-55 decoy. Raytheon makes the ALE-50 decoy.

The USN, Raytheon and BAE Systems did not disclose how the next generation of decoys would be enhanced. Electronic warfare techniques are closely guarded secrets by most militaries.

US Naval Air Systems Command plans to test the new decoys via Advanced Tactical Aircraft Protection Systems Program based at Naval Air Station Patuxent River in Maryland.

Kartik
BRF Oldie
Posts: 4609
Joined: 04 Feb 2004 12:31

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Kartik » 08 Nov 2019 01:26

Germany may be going in for AESA radar for its Eurofighters and may also buy new Eurofighters to replace Tranche 1 Eurofighters. Those T1 Eurofighters would've barely used up half of their service lives. And we've already seen that no one wants to touch un-upgraded Tranche 1 Eurofighters on the second hand market either, despite the Italians and the Spanish trying to sell theirs to multiple nations. Spain did put its T1 Eurofighters through a basic upgrade to bring some T2 and T3 capabilities to these jets, so theoretically the Luftwaffe could do the same to their T1 Eurofighters.

But they'd rather replace these with new builds since they're way more capable and it does keep the assembly line running longer.

Berlin targets Eurofighter AESA deal and top-up buy

Image

Proposed SEAD/Escort Jammer Eurofighter for the Luftwaffe


Germany appears poised to advance a joint programme with Spain to equip the nations’ later-model Eurofighters with active electronically scanned array (AESA) radars, as Berlin also nears approving the acquisition of 38 new aircraft to replace its Tranche 1-standard interceptors.


“The [AESA] contract is ready – we are in negotiation with NETMA [the NATO Eurofighter and Tornado Management Agency] and the German customer to make sure that this contract can be implemented as soon as possible,” says Kurt Rossner, Airbus Defence & Space’s head of combat aircraft systems.

A deal should be finalised late this year or in early 2020, he says, with deliveries for both nations to commence in 2022. To be supplied by the Leonardo-led Euroradar consortium, the new “E-Scan Mk1” radar sets will be retrofitted to 110 Tranche 2 and 3 jets for Germany, while Spain plans to acquire an initial batch of 19 units.

Rossner notes that export buyers Kuwait and Qatar will receive Eurofighter Typhoons with “Mk1A” radars, with the German and Spanish configuration differing through the use of new multi-channel receiver technology. He indicates that the UK plans to field a future “Mk2” sensor optimised for electronic warfare tasks to complement operations with its Lockheed Martin F-35s.

Meanwhile, Airbus expects a contract from Berlin early next year for a Project Quadriga buy of 38 AESA radar-equipped Eurofighters. These are required to replace Tranche 1-standard aircraft delivered from around 2004.

Spain also appears intent on ordering additional examples to replace its Boeing F/A-18A/Bs. “Eurofighter has already been identified as an ideal replacement by the Spanish air force,” says Airbus Defence & Space head of military aircraft Alberto Gutierrez.

..

Longer term, Airbus is pursuing a requirement to replace the German air force’s Panavia Tornado fleet by 2030. It is proposing to supply 45 Eurofighters with “strategic capabilities” – including nuclear weapons – and 40 in an electronic combat reconnaissance/suppression of enemy air-defence configuration suitable for use in an escort jammer role.

Securing new orders from Germany would support an Airbus-led campaign to sell Eurofighters to Switzerland. Rossner says the 40 aircraft offered to the nation are in the Quadriga configuration. A selection decision is expected late next year or in early 2021, with the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, F-35A and Dassault Rafale as rival candidates.

Rossner says deliveries of new aircraft for Germany could begin some 40-46 months after a contract signature, with final assembly in Manching to be at a rate of between eight and 10 per year. Airbus is already managing a production gap at the site following the completion of orders for the Luftwaffe, including reassigning personnel to support MRO tasks.
..

Kartik
BRF Oldie
Posts: 4609
Joined: 04 Feb 2004 12:31

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Kartik » 08 Nov 2019 03:19

M-346FA

Image

First experimental @Leonardo M-346FA is being prepared for an extensive flight test campaign in 2020 aimed at expanding the flight control system (FCS) envelope. A full rep prototype is now in production to support the avionics system (AVS) upgrade.


Twitter link

Indranil
Forum Moderator
Posts: 7770
Joined: 02 Apr 2010 01:21

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Indranil » 08 Nov 2019 04:41

Wow! A very good looking plane!

Kartik
BRF Oldie
Posts: 4609
Joined: 04 Feb 2004 12:31

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Kartik » 09 Nov 2019 04:31

Turkey reported to be considering Su-35s and then possibly the Su-57E. This may also just be a ruse to try and get the US to take Turkey back into the F-35 program. Turkey has a very large number of F-16s and cannot afford to antagonise the US too much without the possibility of a complete break in ties impacting their defence severely.

Turkey set to go Russian and acquire Sukhois to take place of F-35

Key Points

Turkey looks set to buy Russian Su-35s and Su-57s, having been ejected from the US-led F-35 programme
Ankara has reportedly been offered its own variant of the Su-57

Turkey, now ejected from the Lockheed Martin F-35 programme, may be poised to make a major change in procurement policy and acquire advanced fighters from Russia. Such a decision would align with a previous Turkish procurement in which US and other NATO-nation air defence systems were rejected in favour of the Russian Almaz-Antei S-400.

That S-400 purchase is what initially led to Turkey being pushed out of the F-35 project over concerns that Turkey's operation of the S-400 could put radar signals analysis of the F-35 in the hands of the Russians.

Turkish news outlets have reported that negotiations between Moscow and Ankara on the purchase of the Sukhoi Su-35 'Super Flanker' began shortly after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Russian President Vladimir Putin held one-to-one discussions at the August 2019 Moscow Air Show. The negotiations reportedly took two months to finalise.

That said, as recently as 29 October Turkish Defence Minister Hulusi Akar was denying any Su-35 deal, reportedly maintaining, "We are F-35 partners, and we say give us what is rightfully ours."

The initial Russian proposal was that Turkey join the Su-57 programme to replace its F-35 acquisition plans. This idea was initially declined, with a Turkish counterproposal including two streams of activity. The first was the acquisition of 36 Su-35s, with a contract signing to be announced by the end of this year. Turkish interest in the Su-35 has been partially based on evaluation of its performance in the Russian air campaign over Syria.

Kartik
BRF Oldie
Posts: 4609
Joined: 04 Feb 2004 12:31

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Kartik » 09 Nov 2019 05:40

First serial built Su-57 on the assembly line

Image

Twitter link

brar_w
BRF Oldie
Posts: 7920
Joined: 11 Aug 2016 06:14

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby brar_w » 09 Nov 2019 07:39

JayS wrote:[

BTW what is the status of the next-generation fighter program of the USAF..?? I expect it to be a true blue 6th generation fighter with a proper 6th generation engine on it, unlike the 5+ generation platforms like FCAS/Tempest. I don't see anyone other than the US having any visibility on 6th Gen engine, which I feel is the key enabler and differentiator for a 6th generation fighter.


The USAF has an active, funded program and has committed $5+ billion over the next 5 years for technology maturation and risk reduction on mission systems and aero vehicles and networks on top of the few billion they’ve already spent publicly. This does not include the propulsion investments which are ahead of the rest from a maturity perspective. The goal is to have Next generation fighters heading over to squadrons by 2030 with IOC a couple of years from then. The USN is about 5 or so years behind but they are not yet fully committed to a clean sheet design. They’re still doing an analysis of alternatives to determine what replaces the SH and Growler.

Q&A: A New Way to Build Fighters

Will Roper, the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics, is the point man within the Air Force for accelerating acquisition and finding ways to leverage technology to save money and build a more lethal Air Force. He served previously as the head of the Pentagon’s Strategic Capabilities Office, and before that as the Chief Architect of the Missile Defense Agency. He spoke exclusively with Editorial Director John A. Tirpak about the Next-Generation Air Dominance (NGAD) system, and Roper’s “Digital Century Series” concept for developing future combat aircraft. This is an excerpt from that interview.

Q. Air Combat Command needs a new air superiority capability by 2030, and the Air Force is talking with industry about possible technologies. But it seems like you want to restructure the way you design and build aircraft before you jump into NGAD.

A. I don’t think the immediate set of technologies for NGAD … have shifted at all. They are a good set. I wish we could talk more broadly about them, but they make sense.

But how we build aircraft, that doesn’t make sense. Approaching NGAD the way we did the F-35 would put us at great risk. It would shrink the industry base even further and incentivize companies to get out of the fighter-building business.

The idea of the ‘Digital Century Series’ is not about building aircraft that are different, but about building aircraft differently. The key tenet is a new ‘holy trinity’ of technologies that would flip the pace of building new things and the price we pay for them. That trinity is: agile software development—no surprises, there—modular, open-systems architecture—because we want to be able to change out components quickly and seamlessly—and, finally, digital engineering, which is the new element.

We’re accustomed to doing things digitally in the Air Force. Flight simulators, for example, help pilots get proficient faster than just flying. It’s cheaper to do it that way, as well.

Digital engineering brings that same idea into design, production, and sustainment. It brings a high level of fidelity, and not just in the design of the aircraft. It’s the assembly line, where people are doing work; what work is being done; the machines that do the work; the tooling. … All digitally modeled, so you can optimize it. You can get expensive tooling out if you can find a better substitute. You can change a process from requiring an artisan with years of training to one requiring a lower skill level. The idea is to find a better way of assembling things, and raise the learning curve in the digital space, before you ever build the first aircraft.

The ambition—which I think is completely achievable—is building the first airplane as if it was the hundredth.

Q. Are there any examples that prove this works?

A. The T-7A [formerly known as the T-X] trainer is one. It gives you a leading indicator that when you apply digital engineering—and Boeing has, for that airplane—amazing things are possible. Now we want to show that we can do the same thing for advanced aircraft, and bring in the software and modularity. Everything is empowered by software—we want to have apps on airplanes that change every day if necessary—and the modularity because we want to be able to change the subsystems frequently.

Think about combining those things. You could be in production at a very low rate with a very small team if you get the hard tooling and highly skilled workforce out of the assembly line. You could build airplanes LEGO-style.

Q. So this lowers the bar for companies to compete for design work?

A. At the time of the original Century Series [the F-100 through F-117], we had over a dozen companies that could design and build airplanes. We want to get back to that, where companies design things and build them at a small rate.
With digital engineering, as technologies mature, you can modernize the design; cut new things into production without slowing down the flow. And do it between multiple vendors so that there’s competition.

Q. Instead of winner-take-all, you’ll have multiple companies designing aircraft for you constantly?

A. Multiple companies designing and building concurrently, with different technologies, and not designing ‘X’ planes but aircraft that could be produced in quantity—if the nation needs them—and flown by any pilot in the Air Force without specialized training. That’s the core idea.

We hope for radically different results in terms of quality, and to keep quantities low until we need quantity in bulk.

We have to try something different, because we have so few major acquisition programs that it has shrunk the industrial base for tactical aircraft down to two or three companies that can do it. We have to change the paradigm so there’s profit in design, and not ask companies to buy into a program, and hope to make their investment back in production and sustainment of a large number of things.

If we don’t change that, we’re in danger of collapsing to a single national fighter company, and that is not where we want to be.

Q. It used to be, companies lost their shirts in design, but made profits later. That’s been the model since the 1980s.

A. See, we don’t want people to lose their shirt in design. We want people to get paid in design. If you want a cutting-edge Air Force, give companies profit for designing cutting-edge things.

I love design. That’s where I want to be. The last thing I want is a program saying, ‘hurry, hurry, let’s get into production’ and not think about cutting-edge because we’re already in the hole. That’s the model we now consider normal, and there’s nothing normal about asking industry to lose money in design if you want to be cutting-edge.

Q. What would change in the usual production process, particularly on the back end?

A. With the Digital Century Series, we want to give profit in design, keep production rates low, never go to ‘full rate’ production, not buy hundreds or thousands of things so that we can keep upgrading and modernizing, and re-competing who builds the next aircraft every few years. If we do this well, and digital tools become common industry practice, you don’t have to be a producer of thousands to be a competitor. You can be a competitor as a great design company. And if this sounds like science fiction, it’s already happened in the automotive industry.

If we do it, we can start building cutting-edge aircraft every few years, and … we can build satellites this way, as well.

Q. How many would you make?

Maybe a wing’s worth or two wings’ worth of aircraft, not designing them to last 30 years, but with a shorter service life so we retire the airplane as the next aircraft comes online. We could grow the industrial base again. And if we do one every four or five years, then we can impose cost on our adversaries, because they’d never know what’s on the next airplane we’re fielding.

What would be great for a platform developer is, they could keep their design teams together and profit from doing it. No win would be a big one, and no loss would be a big loss, so you don’t have to fight us in court. The loser cannot lose and be out forever. There has to always be a way to enter and keep designing. You just need to get back to designing the next one.

Q. Notionally, how many are we talking about? 50? 100?

A. That’s part of why I’m going to focus a whole team on doing this, with a program executive officer to lead. It’ll be a special organization with autonomy, similar to Big Safari, with a very different mission, but focused 100 percent on building digital aircraft.

I’ve been discussing this with industry, the platform manufacturers, the suppliers, and there’s general enthusiasm. You can imagine, the idea of building things frequently has a lot of appeal. Because the intervals between major programs have grown to about 20 years. But there’s a general sense of caution as well, because this is new.

The idea has appeal, too, because they … would not be in a place where they have no idea when the next fighter or bomber is going to be built.

This is different from ‘X-planes’ because those are about high-tech demonstrators, never meant to go into production. We’re designing these with the idea that any one of them could go into production. And we’ll crunch the numbers, but we envision that production of 50-60 is probably the minimum for any aircraft, because if we make too few, there’s no business case for industry.

General [Mike] Holmes, [commander of Air Combat Command], sees operational advantages to this, but what I’ve been told is, it’s more difficult to use anything less than a wing of about 72 aircraft. Doing this every five years, and maybe four, an acquisition strategy might look like: award a contract for 50, and then evaluate whether or not you want to award another option for 25, and then another option for 25. And then, at year four, move into competition for the next aircraft. And if you’re not happy after 50, maybe switch to a new design earlier.

I’m envious, because I’d love to be the program manager for this.

There’s a painting in the Pentagon with every airplane used by the Army Air Corps and Air Force, [“Wings Through Time” by Robert Emerson Bell]. And it shows that at the beginning, there was this big boom in development, but as you get into the Cold War, the aircraft get more sparse. And every time I pass it, I think, ‘I wish I’d gotten to do acquisition during the earlier parts of the painting.’ How exciting it would have been to have a new airplane coming out so frequently?

Q. How long would you keep these airplanes?

A. We don’t yet know what to tell industry to design for, in terms of service life. We’re going to have maverick-y maintainers and sustainers on the team. I’ve asked General [Arnold] Bunch, [head of Air Force Materiel Command], for help on this because we don’t want these things to go through 30-year service lives. We want to balance the number of flight hours with the pace at which we can upgrade. And if we do that, we don’t end up doing deep overhaul maintenance at the depots because we’re taking them out of service sooner.

The good news is, we can pull some of the profit and cashflow industry currently gets from long-term sustainment contracts and plow that back into design and micro-production. So, we won’t get any new money from Congress, but we can shift where it’s spent. We’re not going to compete with China by sustaining old things well.

Q. So you can apply this idea to unmanned aircraft as well?

A. You can apply this to anything. And although this is not a sharper point on the spear, it is a much faster spear-building process, and that’s what our adversaries should fear.

I want to achieve the same revolution in aircraft and satellites and weapons that the automotive industry has achieved. Our cars [today] are increasingly digital, they run forever and they never break down. And companies can produce multiple cars in the same production lines, seamlessly, without any bump in progress or flow. We could do that.

Q. Is there enough time to apply this to NGAD? Can you risk figuring this out on such an important project?

A. We’ve got a set of technologies ready to go. We’ve got a healthy supplier base for the subsystems and they are excited to bring technologies to us, but they’re not all at the same level of maturity. There’s value in beginning—and demonstrating—that we can make this digital process work, getting some advanced tech on the airplanes that we don’t have today, and then including the additional technology from the subsystems as it matures.

How we go forward is a warfighter decision. I will offer best advice on what’s possible, and they will pick and choose what we do and when. But we’ve had great support from our senior leaders. I fully expect that we will begin as soon as we’ve figured out how you make a positive business case, balancing all the variables of design timeline, technology, maturation, sustainment, and then what it takes to make this profitable for industry.


chola
BRF Oldie
Posts: 3878
Joined: 16 Dec 2002 12:31
Location: USA

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby chola » 16 Nov 2019 15:14

Burmese JF-17s. Supposedly the assembly line for the single-seater exists only in Pakiland Kamra. No sympathy for Rohingyas and Uighurs unlike their bellyaching over the Kashmiris.

With SD-10

Image

Big blue missile is a C-802 AShM

Image

Twin seater, JF-17B

Image

Rakesh
Forum Moderator
Posts: 7874
Joined: 15 Jan 2004 12:31
Location: Planet Earth
Contact:

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Rakesh » 16 Nov 2019 22:55

https://twitter.com/eurofighter/status/ ... 6738089984 ---> The Eurofighter ECR (Electronic Combat Role) is a collaborative development of German industry - Airbus Defence, Hensoldt, MBDA , MTU Aero Engines, Premium Aerotec, Rolls Royce DEU.

Image

Rakesh
Forum Moderator
Posts: 7874
Joined: 15 Jan 2004 12:31
Location: Planet Earth
Contact:

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Rakesh » 16 Nov 2019 23:03

https://twitter.com/I30mki/status/1194631644591710208 ---> A MiG-29 project, which never became real. The MiG-29KU.

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Karan M
Forum Moderator
Posts: 18664
Joined: 19 Mar 2010 00:58

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Karan M » 17 Nov 2019 00:13

Hide this post, it will give MiG-29 fans like Kartik nightmares. :D

brar_w
BRF Oldie
Posts: 7920
Joined: 11 Aug 2016 06:14

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby brar_w » 18 Nov 2019 21:25

F-35 Demo Team , Over Looking From the Sunrisemountain Aviation Nation 2019 Nellis AFB Air Show



Kartik
BRF Oldie
Posts: 4609
Joined: 04 Feb 2004 12:31

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Kartik » 20 Nov 2019 06:43

Rakesh wrote:https://twitter.com/I30mki/status/1194631644591710208 ---> A MiG-29 project, which never became real. The MiG-29KU.

OMG..it's hideous!! And people here were calling the UPG ugly! Lord above, how did this go past someone's pencil sketch at all?! It looks like a deformed minotaur like creature. :shock:

Makes me wonder...could it be just a fluke that they designed what is one of the most attractive fighters of all time, the MiG-29? If they could put something as hideous as this through a wind tunnel, maybe they just accidentally made the MiG-29 that perfect. Clearly aesthetics wouldn't have been a factor in the Mikoyan Gurevich design works.

Kartik
BRF Oldie
Posts: 4609
Joined: 04 Feb 2004 12:31

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Kartik » 20 Nov 2019 06:46

In other news, SOME of UAE's Mirage-2000-9s are going to be upgraded by Dassault. Contract signed at Dubai Air Show 2019. Numbers to be upgraded, the scope of the upgrade, etc. are not being revealed, but the cost indicates that only a portion of the fleet will be upgraded. Some of us will still be able to hope that the IAF can lay its hands on some more second-hand un-upgraded Mirages from UAE, as unlikely as it may be.

UAE signs Mirage upgrade

The UAE announced on November 18 at the Dubai Airshow a contract to upgrade some of its Dassault Mirage 2000-9s in a deal with Dassault Aviation (Pavilion A26-28) that is valued at around AED1.8 billion ($490 million). The announcement of the agreement was widely anticipated, a program to upgrade the UAE Air Force’s fleet having first been aired during the 2017 Dubai show. During that event, a deal to upgrade the UAE Air Force’s F-16s was also announced.

No details regarding the nature of the Mirage upgrade were revealed, but it was earlier reported that the upgrade might include the Talios advanced targeting pod and the RDY-3 radar, both from French company Thales. In the same defense ministry announcement as the Mirage upgrade, Thales was also awarded an AED232 million contract for “maintenance and spares” for the Mirage 2000, while an AED93 million contract was also announced with the Mirage’s main weapon supplier, MBDA France. The Mirage is typically armed in UAEAF service with MBDA’s Black Shaheen variant of the Storm Shadow/Scalp long-range stand-off precision attack missile, along with Mica air-to-air missiles. Another Mirage weapon is the Al Tariq precision-guided bomb that is produced by a company in the UAE's Edge group.


The largest deal announced by the UAE defense ministry on November 18 was an AED3.5 billion ($950m) award to GAL, also part of EDGE, for helicopter maintenance. Lockheed Martin also secured an AED76 million deal to provide equipment and support for the F-16 fleet.

Gerard
Forum Moderator
Posts: 7673
Joined: 15 Nov 1999 12:31

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Gerard » 21 Nov 2019 06:56

SpaceX's Starship Mk1 suffers bulkhead failure during cryo loading test

The main event of today, the Mk1 Starship’s first cryogenic loading test, involved filling the methane and oxygen tanks with a cryogenic liquid. During the test, the top bulkhead of the vehicle ruptured and was ejected away from the site, followed by a large cloud of vapors and cryogenic liquid from the tank.



Kartik
BRF Oldie
Posts: 4609
Joined: 04 Feb 2004 12:31

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Kartik » 22 Nov 2019 06:49

Here HAL has to go to such great lengths to get the IAF to commit to the HTT-40 and in UAE, the Air Force placed an order before the company even figured out when first flight would occur.

From AW&ST
Image
Image


A last-minute announcement by the United Arab Emirates’ defense ministry at the Dubai Airshow has launched the UAE into the ranks of the world’s manufacturers of manned military aircraft.

Calidus received a 2.27 billion Dirham ($618 million) contract from the defense ministry on Nov. 20 for 20 Bader-250 (B-250) light attack and advanced trainer aircraft for the UAE Air Force.

Although negotiations over the final deal have continued for two years, the announcement came so suddenly that the UAE-based company was still unaware of critical details such as the schedule for first flight of the production series of the B-250, first delivery to the UAE and the date for achieving an operational capability.


Despite the last-second timing of the announcement, the contract award for the production of a manned military aircraft is a long-awaited milestone in the UAE’s planned emergence as an industrial power. “This step is the first step in having a UAE strategic partner and aircraft industry,” says Maj. Gen. Abdullah Al-Hashmi, assistant undersecretary of services for the UAE defense ministry. “We have to develop our industry,” he adds. “We can’t live off oil forever.”

The UAE has been building toward such a milestone for over a decade. The former Dubai-based Adcom Systems developed and produced a series of aerial targets and the Yabhon family of small and large unmanned aircraft systems (UAS). A newly formed defense holding company, Edge Group, now produces a wide portfolio of guided weapons and small UAS. But until now, the country lacked an indigenous supplier for manned military aircraft.

As a local source for industrial machinery and equipment, Calidus may seem an unlikely candidate to play the role of military aircraft manufacturer. But it had help: The B-250 design originated in Brazil, where startup Novaer built the first two prototype aircraft in 2017. A now-dissolved joint venture with Calidus financed the first two aircraft, then shipped prototypes to the UAE for the aircraft’s public debut at the 2017 Dubai Airshow.

The planned transfer of B-250 production tooling to the UAE from Brazil by year-end is now complete, says Ali Mustafa, director of marketing for Calidus. The company has established a new plant in Al Ain to build B-250 aircraft at a maximum rate of up to two per month.

The 4,500-kg (9,900-lb.) B-250 resembles the exterior dimensions of the 5,400-kg Embraer A-29 Super Tucano, although it lacks the latter’s stepped-up rear cockpit seat featuring a composite fuselage instead of aluminum. The prototype aircraft’s Collins Aerospace Pro Line Fusion cockpit and Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-68 turboprop engine provide a commercial-standard backbone for avionics and propulsion, which could be augmented by a federated mission system to control weapons and sensors.


But the UAE Air Force could substitute other suppliers for the avionics and other mission systems for the production variant, Mustafa says. The contract award means Calidus can start discussions with B-250 suppliers for the next 24 aircraft. Officers in foreign air force uniforms crowded around the B-250 at the Dubai Airshow static display only hours after the contract announcement.

Calidus hopes to capitalize on the UAE order by attracting business in the global market for counterinsurgency, close air support, light attack and advanced trainer aircraft. The company already has a memorandum of understanding with Riyadh-based GDC Middle East to market the aircraft in the Middle East and North Africa.

The UAE previously acquired fleets of Iomax Border Patrol Aircraft (BPA) and Archangel light attack platforms derived from the Air Tractor AT-802 and Thrush S2R-660 agricultural aircraft. But the defense ministry has donated many of the BPAs to Egypt and Jordan. Asked if the defense ministry held the same plans for the B-250, Mustafa says it is possible, but he is not aware of the military’s plans for the new fleet.

Meanwhile, the B-250 prototypes have continued performing flight tests since 2017 with the participation of the UAE Air Force, Mustafa says. The timeline for military certification of the production version of the B-250 has not been released.

The next step for Calidus after the surprise contract announcement is to meet with the air force in the near future, Mustafa says. Calidus expects to learn the details of the air force’s schedule and requirements for the production B-250, he adds.

agupta
BRFite
Posts: 230
Joined: 13 Oct 1999 11:31

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby agupta » 22 Nov 2019 09:37

Kartik wrote:Here HAL has to go to such great lengths to get the IAF to commit to the HTT-40 and in UAE, the Air Force placed an order before the company even figured out when first flight would occur.


...

Although negotiations over the final deal have continued for two years, the announcement came so suddenly that the UAE-based company was still unaware of critical details such as the schedule for first flight of the production series of the B-250, first delivery to the UAE and the date for achieving an operational capability.


...
[b]
The B-250 design originated in Brazil, where startup Novaer built the first two prototype aircraft in 2017. ... then shipped prototypes to the UAE for the aircraft’s public debut at the 2017 Dubai Airshow.

The planned transfer of B-250 production tooling to the UAE from Brazil by year-end is now complete, says Ali Mustafa, director of marketing for Calidus. The company has established a new plant in Al Ain to build B-250 aircraft at a maximum rate of up to two per month.
....



I realize that in some parts of BRF, beating on the IAF to prove one's superior patriotism is de riguer, but this is ... well, ....something that's not good.

Lets see what the UAE does with this new company and its proposed next-gen BT-350 when and if the B-250s kill off half a dozen pilots over the next decade once it goes into service, and is never able to explain how or why those faults happen. I think that would be a more appropriate back-to-back comparison, hain ?

These guys had prototypes in 2017, about the same time HTT-40-p2 flew; so they are getting commitments around the same time frame - and note they have production tooling being shipped over. I haven't read much about how ready HAL is to productionize the HTT-40 design... you know, the one big important step to convert a concept/TD into a product that has not yet been seen to be HAL Aircraft Division's strong point ?

Geez, I get that the UAE govt has the $$ and the mind-set to surgically stand up indigenous capabilities from scratch.... but lets not get carried away and try and judge each HAL unit's performance on its own merits. The HTT-40 team is not the LCA team, nor the Helicopter team, its the HPT-32/IJT team... so while my fingers are crossed for the HTT-40 and wish-tank is full, "show -me and I'll sign on" seems to be the right attitude

Indranil
Forum Moderator
Posts: 7770
Joined: 02 Apr 2010 01:21

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Indranil » 22 Nov 2019 11:03

Agupta sahaab,

I agree with you that we go overboard with blaiming the IAF here. But, in the case of HTT40, it is much deserved. I don't want to open my mouth here, but without Parrikar, that project would be killed without no doubt. You can ask anybody who is related to that project.

Parrikar shoved it down IAF's throat because he was being given presentations against it at every possible instance. It helped that Parrikar was an engineer of high pedigree. The project manage explained performance in physical terms and Parrikar could see through cherry picking of brochure figures that were being fed to him.

I would love the plane to be renamed after him.

agupta
BRFite
Posts: 230
Joined: 13 Oct 1999 11:31

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby agupta » 22 Nov 2019 14:13

Indranil wrote:Agupta sahaab,

I agree with you that we go overboard with blaiming the IAF here. But, in the case of HTT40, it is much deserved. I don't want to open my mouth here, but without Parrikar, that project would be killed without no doubt. You can ask anybody who is related to that project.

Parrikar shoved it down IAF's throat because he was being given presentations against it at every possible instance. It helped that Parrikar was an engineer of high pedigree. The project manage explained performance in physical terms and Parrikar could see through cherry picking of brochure figures that were being fed to him.

I would love the plane to be renamed after him.


My point simply is a comparison of 2 planes has to be factual... and not just be based on history.

Fully agree with you: It took his vision and savviness both to resuscitate that team.... and its success is long overdue. A simple but effective and flawless - hell call it -2 Gen for all I care- but just get a robust, will-do-what-is-needed out @ scale, @ quality and supportably.

That said, in my book and I would argue by most standards, the team/org that gave us the HPT-32 and IJT disasters didn't really deserve a 3rd chance without an example being made on the accountability front... the chalta hai here was OFB-level ! Planes fall off inexplicably - chalta hai! Main Wing L/D problem... chalta hai! Got basic HQ and controls design issues...Chalta hai !

India and IAF desperately needs/needed a HTT-40 like plane to succeed... so I am just glad we are where we are and as you said, thanks to MP who got people to go along, even if they didn't get along. I think its great HAL puts its money where its mouth is ... instead of doing all sorts of shenanigans to get orders or focusing on their MoD dividend.

Indranil
Forum Moderator
Posts: 7770
Joined: 02 Apr 2010 01:21

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Indranil » 22 Nov 2019 23:55

Moving on, I really wanted to discuss the B250. I don't quite understand it. A turboprop highflier with presurrized cabin and a price of over $20 million a pop. It takes 1.25k per flying hour. Does it make sense? It is not for training, why wouldn't I buy an Alca or any attack trainer?

The difference is hang time. But then why wouldn't I buy a predator class drone?

Kartik
BRF Oldie
Posts: 4609
Joined: 04 Feb 2004 12:31

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Kartik » 23 Nov 2019 06:31

agupta wrote:I realize that in some parts of BRF, beating on the IAF to prove one's superior patriotism is de riguer, but this is ... well, ....something that's not good.

Lets see what the UAE does with this new company and its proposed next-gen BT-350 when and if the B-250s kill off half a dozen pilots over the next decade once it goes into service, and is never able to explain how or why those faults happen. I think that would be a more appropriate back-to-back comparison, hain ?

These guys had prototypes in 2017, about the same time HTT-40-p2 flew; so they are getting commitments around the same time frame - and note they have production tooling being shipped over. I haven't read much about how ready HAL is to productionize the HTT-40 design... you know, the one big important step to convert a concept/TD into a product that has not yet been seen to be HAL Aircraft Division's strong point ?

Geez, I get that the UAE govt has the $$ and the mind-set to surgically stand up indigenous capabilities from scratch.... but lets not get carried away and try and judge each HAL unit's performance on its own merits. The HTT-40 team is not the LCA team, nor the Helicopter team, its the HPT-32/IJT team... so while my fingers are crossed for the HTT-40 and wish-tank is full, "show -me and I'll sign on" seems to be the right attitude


You're kidding me right? The IAF's attitude on acquiring a BTA has been lethargic to say the least, for the longest part. the IAF sat on HAL's proposed tandem seater BTA to replace the HPT-32, basically killing it off more than 2 decades ago. Instead of supporting it with some basic level of funding to replace the HPT-32, they did zilch. And made sure that the program didn't progress beyond a mock-up.

They then sat around twiddling their thumbs till the HPT-32s had to be grounded and then only imports were left as an option. Then they tweaked around with requirements to suit a particular bidder (Pilatus). And then the IAF Air Chief actually went public with remarks that derided the HTT-40 and HAL, without even giving them a chance, despite HAL actually for once being pro-active and developing a product on its own funds.

This type of attitude is what derailed the Marut program and led to a host of issues where the IAF acted like a disinterested customer that was just waiting for the indigenous R&D effort to fail and then demand imports instead.

HAL is our own country's PSU, not the enemy's. It is absolutely imperative that the IAF works WITH them to solve issues, because they have a strong incentive to get more and more of their platforms and weapons from indigenous sources. Given the cost of weapons nowadays and how important it is to generate more jobs as well as develop technology within the nation, it is simply not possible to buy everything from someone else using excuses like HAL's work culture, etc. Demand better quality work, adhering to schedules, but also be aware of all the problems that the developer is facing. People that don't follow that approach will most likely no longer make it to the top. The difference started appearing a couple of years ago and now hopefully will be institutionalised.

Kartik
BRF Oldie
Posts: 4609
Joined: 04 Feb 2004 12:31

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Kartik » 23 Nov 2019 06:43

agupta wrote:That said, in my book and I would argue by most standards, the team/org that gave us the HPT-32 and IJT disasters didn't really deserve a 3rd chance without an example being made on the accountability front... the chalta hai here was OFB-level ! Planes fall off inexplicably - chalta hai! Main Wing L/D problem... chalta hai! Got basic HQ and controls design issues...Chalta hai !


The HPT-32's issues didn't crop up overnight. They were known for ages, but what were the IAF's plans to replace it as part of a Long Term Plan? Was there even a Long Term Plan to replace the HPT-32? What was it? Just sit around till the issue became so urgent that there was simply no option but to import a Basic Trainer, while ADA/HAL were flying a 4th gen light fighter!

The same IAF top brass was criminally negligent in much rather waiting decades for an AJT to be imported than work on a new simple indigenous AJT that took the lessons of the Ajeet program. It was doable as well, but the lethargy and lack of vision was institutional. They would just rather wait for successive govts to buy a Hawk or Alpha jet for them than push, goad and encourage HAL to do it with their active participation.

Frankly speaking- did the IAF even have the organizational knowledge to be able to fix the HPT-32 issue? Not even a basic design house AFAIK. Just happy with laying out staff requirements and having someone else do all the hard work of program management and owning the product till it enters production. Or better still, just take whatever some other country's OEM develops for THEIR requirements and then taking it and using it as best as one could. The attitude was "oh we're just the customer!". They inducted, put up with all sorts of sub-standard imported equipment that had lousy track records but it took decades to move towards a mentality where they were part and parcel of the development process and could shape it to their own needs while hand holding a nascent aerospace industry.

agupta
BRFite
Posts: 230
Joined: 13 Oct 1999 11:31

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby agupta » 23 Nov 2019 09:00

Indranil wrote:Moving on, I really wanted to discuss the B250. I don't quite understand it. A turboprop highflier with presurrized cabin and a price of over $20 million a pop. It takes 1.25k per flying hour. Does it make sense? It is not for training, why wouldn't I buy an Alca or any attack trainer?

The difference is hang time. But then why wouldn't I buy a predator class drone?


Yes...it's curious. Its clearly not "just" a trainer but seems like a Super Tucano derivative. Wonder why not just take the original ? Perhaps this is the H&D saving transplant procedure.... call it indigenous when you can spin off/licence/buy a variant and the entire branch of a family.


A lot of the cost I suspect is in either the systems & system integration or the production tooling; unclear how mature/real that is.

agupta
BRFite
Posts: 230
Joined: 13 Oct 1999 11:31

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby agupta » 23 Nov 2019 09:35

Karthik - I must say I am a bit stunned at your note. All I will say is that

a) its unusual for me to hear that the User has to fix stuff or provide funding for fixing it or to have "organizational knowledge". Conventional industrial and economic wisdom puts that onus on the supplying organization. And if you keep saying there's nothing wrong or cannot find/explain what's wrong as your product kills people you will be toast in ANY marketplace.

Can you name one person or word written officially in determining accountability for the HPT-32 disaster ? Or the IJT issues?

It will be a tough pill to swallow for some, but I think its a sign that we have one (and only one) strong DR&D "A" team around the LCA complex... and the B team is just growing up and coming to a useful competence level. You seem to discount the absolute lack of credibility HAL Aircraft Division "enjoys" in the community. There is a concept of "Say/Do" ratio; even a R&D org like NAL had a better reputation.

Your comments sound like expecting someone to line up to volunteer - at the hospital that just offed a near one in surgery - for
- more elective surgery commitments to prove your patriotic commitment to the Health-Industrial complex
- personal donations and a binder full of long term development and plans to train the hospital staff so the next time they don't kill you and others
- education and training in your family to build up your own "organizational knowledge" in case the surgeons keep screwing up.


b) This discussion will be pointless if it becomes generic one about PSUs, IAF, MArut etc. My suggestion will be to focus it to comparing this B-250 vs HTT-40. I believe in your comparison you missed a few important points (that I marked in red) in your haste ... and allowed it to become a generic HAL vs IAF thing. I will not contribute more to that topic - so my last - and sincere apologies for any inadvertant offense given

Gerard
Forum Moderator
Posts: 7673
Joined: 15 Nov 1999 12:31

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Gerard » 24 Nov 2019 18:44

link

This is the aftermath downrange following a Chinese Long March 3B launch from Xichang early Saturday. And that yellow smoke is very toxic hypergolic propellant

brar_w
BRF Oldie
Posts: 7920
Joined: 11 Aug 2016 06:14

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby brar_w » 24 Nov 2019 20:55

Some interesting tidbits (my summary) of information in the submission to US Congress by Greg Ulmer, the General Manager of the F-35 program -

* 2019 production/delivery rate 131 (up 40% YOY)

* 2023 production/delivery rate now set at 165 aircraft (since LRIP 12-14 deal has been finalized) - This is the highest production rate that is currently part of the production plan.

* Between production supply chain and the two FACO lines (Japan will sunset its line soon) the overall delivery capacity is 189 aircraft per year which leaves about 25 aircraft a year of wiggle room between last contracted production lot and future FRP lots..They can play around with this depending upon flexible demand and export/domestic mix over a 3-5 year block buy cycle which will start after LOT 14 (US sits the block buy out while export customers order it that way in LOT 12-14).

[As an aside, LRIP 13 is the first production Lot where the Unit Cost** of the F-35C dips to below $100 Million (it is at $94 Million). The F-35B still goes for around $101 Million at LRIP 14 so it is quite possible that at FRP it too dips to below $100 Million a pop. The F-35A will likely remain stable at $78 Million URF for the Air Vehicle, Engine and contractor fees. Crazy that by 2024, the JSF program could deliver as many aircraft in a year as the entire F-22A production run..The impact from booting Turkey out of the program has been minimal if not totally negligible. 131 aircraft will still be built this year as was the plan..and more than 140 will be built next year..Between 2020 and 2023 they will stabilize production and slowly climb up to 165 aircraft a year build rate while they build up supplier capacity for more. Supplier capacity to support a 170 aircraft build rate is expected to be achieved by 2022 so they can absorb a Full Rate Production decision anytime after that.. ]

* External stations #3 and #9 can carry Hypersonic weapons currently in the works.

* Internal Weapon Bay (IWB) capability being expanded (Like referring to sidekick and the 6-AMRAAM capability)

* 5-Year PBL's now on the table as system is sufficiently mature to offer it and for the US DOD to evaluate it with data (Annual PBL's for many export customers are already in place)

* Production LOT 15 will be the first production lot to cut initial Block 4 hardware features into production. These include the Next Generation Distributed Aperture System (NG-EODAS from Raytheon) the new Integrated Core Processor (will surpass F-15 ADCP II as the fastest mission computer on a fighter), and the LED Panoramic Cockpit Display replacing the LCD's currently equipping the baseline Block 3 aircraft.

[With the EW system being overhauled as part of Pre-Block 4 and Block 4* activity and new Mission computers being fitted in along with NG-DAS and NG-EOTS it sort of opens up the door to more extensive Radar upgrades and even external sensors (EW, ISR etc) to come in towards the middle to second half of the 2020's. We could be eyeing a radar competition in the mid-2020's as well..]

* Starting with Production Lot 13, enhanced Multi-Dommain Operations (MDO) and integration capability will be included that builds on some of the stuff that is currently being demonstrated and tested/validated. This includes full integration with the Aegis Missile Defense system, HIMARS, the Integrated Air and Missile Defense Battle Command System (IBCS - US Army's Air and Missile Defense C2), and early integration work for the F-35 to be used in the Missile Defense application (demonstrations under "Project Riot ***" have already successfully proven this). The F-35 is fully Link-16 compliant with these systems. The MDO capability being mentioned is that of an integrated Fire-Control Level connectivity leveraging the F-35's LPI sensors i.e. - Any Sensor / Any Shooter and not just info sharing and tactical overlays of external sensor feed via Link-16 (allready possible with F-35 and older generation aircraft on the L-16 network).

* Lockheed and Elbit of Israel are collaborating on a 600-gallon external tank and an associated jettison-able pylon for the F35A to increase range and loiter time.

[ The "Flight" portion of the Operational Test and Evaluation is nearly all done and will probably be wrapped before the new year. This will then free up a considerable portion of the instrumented test fleet. I suspect that a lot of these company or public-private partnerships and projects will begin showing up and testing/demonstrating the capability. Stuff like the EFT's and expanded internal carriage etc which need to be demonstrated in the air as a next step.

Alternatively, things like EFT's may be flight tested and developed outside of the public eye at a test range somewhere in Israel given that Israel will soon have an instrumented test aircraft of its own..and the fact that it is probably the only current user that can put this capability to good use in the short/near term. An F-35A with 2 x 600 Gallon Tanks and full internal FT can carry more fuel than an F-15E with full internal fuel including the 750 Gallon CFT's. On a range/payload basis such an F-35 configuration could probably give an F-15E+CFT+2x600 gallon EFT a run for its money depending upon the payload.This with about 2300 kg. of internal weapons. Not bad for an F-16 replacement :lol: ]



https://docs.house.gov/meetings/AS/AS03 ... 191113.pdf

* Pre Block 4 (C2D2) and Block 4 EW enhancements : Thirteen hardware/software upgrades to the AN/ASQ-239 electronic warfare/countermeasures (EW/CM) system are planned for C2D2 and Block 4 addressing both offensive and defensive capabilities.

Image

** Unit Costs (Unit Recurring Fly-Away Cost for the Airframe (and associated MS), Engine and contractor fees to LM and P&W) based on the recently concluded Fixed Price Contract award to Lockheed Martin for production Lots 12-14 that covered >450 Aircraft.

Image

*** Lockheed Martin Skunk Works®' Project Riot Demonstrates Multi-Domain Operations

JayS
Forum Moderator
Posts: 4370
Joined: 11 Aug 2016 06:14

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby JayS » 25 Nov 2019 18:56

Thanks for the concise summary Brar_w. What does new addition "Extended Surface Warfare" Mission capability covers..??

brar_w
BRF Oldie
Posts: 7920
Joined: 11 Aug 2016 06:14

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby brar_w » 25 Nov 2019 20:08

JayS wrote:Thanks for the concise summary Brar_w. What does new addition "Extended Surface Warfare" Mission capability covers..??



Maritime surface warfare is not currently on the F-35's mission list as the USN and USAF prefer to do that mission with different aircraft (Super Hornet for the Navy and B-1B for the USAF). Block-4 adds extended surface warfare capability covering multiple aspects of mission systems and weapons to support that role. This includes additional radar and EW modes, data-link interoperaiblity (full integration into the US Navy Kill chain) and weapons - JSM, Powered JSOW, Brimstone and AARGM-ER all have maritime strike modes and capabilities and all will be part of Block 4. Norway, Australia and Japan will use the aircraft as a maritime strike platform leveraging the JSM and the USN may also buy into that weapon system as a Stand In option. There was even a tender a while back that even looked at integrating the JASSM/LRASM and the JAGM-F on the F-35 (external stores for JASSMER/LRASM and internally for JAGM-F) which also have maritime strike applications.

Kartik
BRF Oldie
Posts: 4609
Joined: 04 Feb 2004 12:31

Re: International Aerospace Discussion - Jan 2018

Postby Kartik » 26 Nov 2019 05:36

KAI KF-X to be armed with Meteor.

From AW&ST

BEIJING—Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) has contracted MBDA to integrate the Meteor long-range air-to-air missile on the KF-X indigenous fighter.

The move follows the South Korean defense ministry’s 2017 statement that the KF-X would be equipped with the Meteor and the Diehl Iris-T short-range air-to-air missile.

“The contract includes integration support to KAI, transfer of know-how and manufacture of test equipment for the KF-X integration and trials program,” MBDA said.

Seoul plans after the KF-X first flight to apply to Washington for permission to integrate U.S. air-to-air missiles on the fighter, a South Korean government source said earlier. The aircraft is due to fly in 2022, according to another source close to the program.

South Korea is a strategic market for MBDA, the missile company’s CEO, Eric Beranger, said in announcing the contract with KAI.


Return to “Military Issues & History Forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: chiru, Google [Bot], Karan M and 56 guests