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Old 24th Jul 2011, 10:21
  #206 (permalink)  
The Old Fat One
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: UK
Posts: 1,519
If the RAF would have gone innovative, smaller, leaner and more flexible 10-15 yrs ago, some of the members around here would still have been flying MPA misisons. Lessons learned the hard way in the UK and the Netherlands..
A mixture of 20/20 hindsight and misguided naivety.

The RAF has visited this concept repeatedly over the years. Multi role platform versus smaller, less complex, role specific platforms. All sorts of very clever dudes (in different league to you or I) have expended vast amounts of energy and money looking into this sort of stuff..and (unlike you or I) have put their professional reputations on the line by making a decision.

There was a long documentary on the space shuttle last night in the UK. Fascinating for some one like me who was a space geek back in the Apollo days and has a library on the subject to hear some of the views of the people behind the project, thirty years on.

I can remember NASA trumpeting how reuseable vehicles would dramtically lower the cost of getting stuff into Earth orbit. Thirty years on, turns out the cost of turning round the shuttle was 3 times higher than using a disposable booster, like Apollo. The moral of the story...hindsight is easy, foresight is hard and prone to error.

Your toy aircraft above is littoral surface surveillance platform. That's about ten percent of the MPA role. Add in a UAV for overland comms (and we all know how cheap they are) that's about another 10-20 percent. Then a modified C130 squadron (or adaptable container fit) for SAR. Then we have still have to address open ocean ASW and long range surface surveillance....um how about 10 or so Nimrods..?

OK I've given you some insight, and not for the first time. Tourist has given you the short answer...for those that would decry him, he happens to be spot on.
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