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F-35 Cancelled, then what ?

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F-35 Cancelled, then what ?

Old 27th Jun 2013, 07:09
  #2901 (permalink)  
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Marines' Sequester Bill: 8,000 Troops, Ground Vehicles, Combat Aircraft

To absorb its share of a $500 billion spending cut that will hit the Defense Department over the next decade, the Marine Corps would shed 8,000 troops and forgo purchases of new armored vehicles, trucks, tactical aircraft and helicopters.

The Marine Corps is prepared to shoulder its portion of the sequester, said Commandant Gen. James F. Amos........

The centerpiece of Marine combat forces is the infantry battalion. From a peak of 27, the Corps is down to 23. Amos would not specify how many more battalions could be eliminated as a result of sequester. But if 8,000 Marines have to go, “there will be battalions in there,” he said. Each battalion is made up of 800 to 1,000 Marines, and is supported by logistics, aviation and other specialized units.

Part of the 8,000-troop reduction would include fixed-wing aviation squadrons that currently fly F/A-18 fighters and Harrier vertical takeoff attack jets. Future F-35B squadrons would be affected, too, said Amos, as well as attack helicopter units that operate Cobra and Huey aircraft. Some V-22 Osprey cutbacks might also be in the mix............
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Old 27th Jun 2013, 09:54
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New VL Pad?

New VL Pad (near YUMA, AZ?):
http://ece.drexel.edu/SeniorDesign/newProjects/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/2012-13-Capstone-Topics-Working-Listing.pdf (4.2Mb)

Click Pic: Earlier ref pads: http://www.pprune.org/military-aircr...ml#post7776413

Last edited by SpazSinbad; 27th Jun 2013 at 09:59.
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Old 27th Jun 2013, 09:54
  #2903 (permalink)  

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How about a guess that in 30 years time when an update is being done to the USAF A fleet they also buy some Bs but use the proven shaft horsepower off-take (around 29k) to drive a nice [email protected] weapon mounted in the lift fan space?
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Old 27th Jun 2013, 11:02
  #2904 (permalink)  
 
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JF - Nice idea... but if I really had an offensive-range [email protected] weapon and not just a SAM/AAM zapper, then maneuvering finally is as irrelevant as Team JSF says it is. Also, I get best range from high altitude. Hmm, lots of power onboard, single-seat, big vertical bay for upper and lower apertures...

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Old 27th Jun 2013, 11:12
  #2905 (permalink)  
 
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KF -

The first thing that I thought I knew about the Joint Strike Fighter program was that it was a single program with three variants. Here’s what I want to tell you. It’s not. It’s three separate airplane programs that have common avionics and a common engine.

Quote from (a) Winslow Wheeler, (b) APA, (c) some guy named Bogdan?
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Old 27th Jun 2013, 11:36
  #2906 (permalink)  
 
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It is? I thought they were fairly common?
The last report I read was 50% between the A and B.

yes they are, but the billions have already been spent. there seems to be a need for these aircraft you aren't seeing.
And billions more will be spent. I know exactly what the need for the aircraft is, I just seriously doubt that the need will be justifiable in an era of austerity.

so the marines with no F-35B would just switch to the super hornet/growler? the navy would go all growler/super bug? is that the plan? I'm just trying to see the logic
In a word, yes.

relax, you don't need to be rude. I probably got that impression when you said:

Quote:
The coming choice seems to be between all 3 variants being produced in far fewer numbers, or the A variant being the sole survivor in moderate numbers.
As I've already explained, 1200 is a far smaller total than the overall 2400, but it is also 70% of the Air Force's 1700 or whetever they wanted. Therefore, the A would go from far smaller to moderate in order size if the other variants got canned.

apparently the USAF being short of F-35s is a tragedy and everyone else being short of f-35s is a minor inconvenience.
You've already admitted yourself that the Navy doesn't care for it, and I've already made the point that the marines' capability in an age of exponential cost rises and defense cuts, is the least justifiable.

you are experiencing the jsf blues. its a common affliction that happens when you discover that a tri service aircraft isn't what you want because it hurts the service you think is most important. the only cure is a time machine back to the mid 1990s, before someone thought the whole thing up. what you are advocating is a JSF that isn't a JSF. but a single fighter for air forces, with the navies of the world and marines buying other things. thus not a joint program. if you think the JSF is suddenly going to become a single service fighter in the interest of saving, you are far far too late.
That's not what I'm advocating, that's what I'm predicting. Having spent time in the MoD, I know how poisonous defense cuts can be for inter-service co-operation. I'm sorry, but the service who's job it is to deliver air power is always going to have the upper hand in keeping the most air power assets, that's just how it works.
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Old 27th Jun 2013, 12:18
  #2907 (permalink)  
 
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The US is not the UK. they work differently.

marines' capability in an age of exponential cost rises and defense cuts, is the least justifiable.
The marines only take up 5 percent to the US DoD budget, and tend to get what they want,as LO pointed out. Does the Uk get the Rafale in your scenario, or do the americans sell your harriers back?

Therefore, the A would go from far smaller to moderate in order size if the other variants got canned.
assuming JSF survived of course. The whole program relies on everyone taking a hit, including international partners who would not stick around if the price went any higher.

also in your scenario, how many JSFs are made a year? is it as projected time wise but with only 50 percent every year? or are 100 percent built every year but the line only stays around half as long as predicted?

Last edited by Killface; 27th Jun 2013 at 15:05.
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Old 27th Jun 2013, 15:35
  #2908 (permalink)  
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so the marines with no F-35B would just switch to the super hornet/growler? the navy would go all growler/super bug? is that the plan? I'm just trying to see the logic
The navy would switch to a mix of SH/Growler and X-47/UCAS-D.

How about a guess that in 30 years time when an update is being done to the USAF A fleet they also buy some Bs but use the proven shaft horsepower off-take (around 29k) to drive a nice [email protected] weapon mounted in the lift fan space?"]How about a guess that in 30 years time when an update is being done to the USAF A fleet they also buy some Bs but use the proven shaft horsepower off-take (around 29k) to drive a nice [email protected] weapon mounted in the lift fan space?
DLWS is on the horizon JF, but the B-1 is getting it first.

Last edited by ORAC; 27th Jun 2013 at 15:38.
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Old 27th Jun 2013, 17:18
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The marines only take up 5% of the budget on paper. The vast majority of their procurement comes out of the navy budget!...just because they only take up a small part of the budget doesn't negate that their air power capabilities are the least justifiable.

The UK would either get Rafale or the F18.

I would expect a mix of both not hitting the peak full rate production and ending the programme early. The problem is that there is going to be less money around in 15 years time than had been forecast 5 years ago; now that we are working on a new trend budget line (producing a $1 trillion dollar differential over 10 years), the only way of realistically reaching the total aspirational numbers are through massive increases in the defense budget through the early 2020s, which is extremely unlikely in any situation, but even more so given the federal government's $17 trillion worth of debt.
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Old 27th Jun 2013, 19:54
  #2910 (permalink)  
 
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We can agree to disagree here. my point is simply this. you can't carve this program up without killing it. its all or none variant wise. because the navy and marines wont buy the A, if they don't buy the A the price skyrockets and the death spiral (or in the Uks case lack of the aircraft they want) makes everyone leave and buy other things.

and my second point is simply that I believe more JSFs will be produced overall, if the B/C variants are left in so that the Marines, Navy, italy, and UK buy the aircraft (along with other nations that might buy them in the future), thus keeping the price lower, with the lower price the USAF will get more in the long run, and international partners will stay in and also purchase the aircraft. so big picture more JSFs of all type to multiple countries even if the order is not in the original amount predicted.

I would rather have 1200 JSFs spread across 3 services with international partners having even more, than 900 in one american air arm. whether you think the marines or navy need their own air force or not is an argument for somewhere else, when the poo hits the fan you need jets for the big show whether they say "Marines" or "Navy" on the side is irrelevant and high end aircraft, like F-18s and A-6s before them, and especially prowlers, have been used in large strategic campaigns and not just to support the grunts. F-35s will be far more useful in the grand campaign than harriers ever were.
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Old 27th Jun 2013, 23:04
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Nice recent video here of a VFA-101 F-35C being ferried to Eglin...


-RP
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Old 28th Jun 2013, 08:18
  #2912 (permalink)  
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Killface.

But it's already in the Death Spiral.

There's no more money but an increasing back log in testing which needs funding; plus all the aircraft being delivered now will need modification for any later required changes. All that has to come out of the existing pot which will mean less available for new aircraft which will reduce the numbers, driving the price up.

The only things undecided are how many will eventually be bought and of which mix of types. But it will certainly be far below the present target.
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Old 30th Jun 2013, 08:52
  #2913 (permalink)  
 
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55 Minutes F-35 Test Pilots Talk to Oz (mention LHDs)

Well worth a listen for 55 minutes with some video unfortunately interspersed but mostly just audio with a few pauses while video disconnects and then back to audio:

Register here first:

Webcasts

"Event Date: Thursday, June 27, 2013 at 9:00 AM AEST [already been broadcast live but still available to listen] Join us on Thursday, June 27 to hear what it’s like to the fly the world’s most advanced 5th Generation fighter from the people who know it best – the pilots. During the event, F-35 test pilots will discuss their experiences flying the F-35, including:

What it’s like to fly a 5th Generation Fighter
- The capabilities it will bring to Australia
- The benefits of stealth and enhanced interoperability

The F-35 Lightning II, with its cutting-edge capabilities, advanced technologies and enhanced interoperability with allies, will help ensure the security of Australia and the Asia-Pacific region for decades to come."

http://event.on24.com/r.htm?e=616902&s=1&k=3B8F35E8826FCBD3E07003501ED69EE8

Last edited by SpazSinbad; 30th Jun 2013 at 08:54.
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Old 30th Jun 2013, 10:44
  #2914 (permalink)  
 
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@ killface

a time machine back to the mid 1990s, before someone thought the whole thing up. what you are advocating is a JSF that isn't a JSF.
I think you have unwittingly hit the nail on the head there.

This aircraft is so far from what was originally sold to the customers it's a DISGRACE that it hasn't been canned long before now.
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Old 30th Jun 2013, 10:57
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Hi Spaz,
I am in the corner that very much believes we are getting this aircraft, I might not agree with the choice but we are getting it.. However do we seriously believe that ANY pilot currently flying this amazing piece of technology is going to criticise it? Yes they might tactfully highlight certain issues but they will always take the party line and say the sun is shining in the middle of a monsoon.

I need to know how our carriers will be used, will they always rely on land based aircraft to act as tankers, land based aircraft to supply air early warning? Or will these carriers be able to operate without this type of support?

Will our F35B's carry external ordinance, fuel tanks, bombs, missiles etc when operating from our carriers and what about this controversial 'Close Air Support' Will it be having fifth generation aircraft flying at high altitude dropping intelligent ordinance close to friendly troops or will it be close air support where the aircraft gets down and dirty, letting the grunts on the ground see them attacking the nearby enemy, having the opposition both seeing and hearing the aircraft that is coming to the aid of the troops that might be in a tight corner? I would ask if this latter option is a non starter for such a modern, complex aircraft but I would like to hear the thoughts of others, especially the US Marines who believe that all pilots are first and foremost a 'grunt with a gun!'

why are the US Marines so adamant that they want the 'B'? We are now reading how any ship that carries this aircraft has to be adapted for that role, the aircraft will not be seen cross decking to ships that have not had this extra work and in this age of sequestration would there be huge and very significant savings if the US Marines purchased more fast jets but did away with their STOVL type fleet? More fast jets, more rotor wing aircraft but scrap the STOVL fleet and let the Navy pay the bill for sea based fast jets. I fully accept every word I read from orac the knowledgeable and I am very interested to hear why he is slowly coming round to the idea of having the 'B' as the aircraft of choice.

I do accept though that we are at where we are at and our only option is this aircraft but I am still far from convinced it is the right choice. All the latest advanced UAV, large drones, call them what you want will need a conventional carrier to operate them and by burying our head in the sand and simply saying we will convert our carriers at a later date just seems wrong... For years we appear to have taken this stance and for years we have been building these two ships knowing full well the 'B' is going to 'b' the last aircraft of its type and once retired, those two ships are redundant. I cite the embarrassing use of the Illustrious with her pretty ski slope and no snow!!! (sorry, aircraft) Yes it has been renamed as a helicopter carrier but how much deck space is wasted and when we have seen her she was carrying a minimal number of aircraft

Is having a very small number of very advanced, very expensive aircraft a better option that having excellent, more adaptable aircraft? Having the much cheaper option would give us so much more versatility and adaptability. I am told our Challenger tanks are an amazing piece of kit but because of the limited numbers they are not considered a threat!!! Is this what the world will think of our very own Air Force? Excellent aircraft but too few to be a threat?

PLEASE, please read this as me asking questions and not saying the F35B is the wrong aircraft. It may well be the best aircraft we will ever own, the best aircraft we have ever operated and might indeed be the best choice.
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Old 30th Jun 2013, 17:24
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I need to know how our carriers will be used, will they always rely on land based aircraft to act as tankers, land based aircraft to supply air early warning? Or will these carriers be able to operate without this type of support?
How did the FAA do it with harriers? how would they do it with sea typhoons or hornets?

will it be close air support where the aircraft gets down and dirty, letting the grunts on the ground see them attacking the nearby enemy, having the opposition both seeing and hearing the aircraft that is coming to the aid of the troops that might be in a tight corner? I would ask if this latter option is a non starter for such a modern, complex aircraft but I would like to hear the thoughts of others, especially the US Marines who believe that all pilots are first and foremost a 'grunt with a gun!'
its better that the enemy not see or hear what hits them as it gives them a chance to shoot back or take actions that make the CAS less effective. Its not really about seeing or hearing the aircraft doing CAS but the effect. unless its a gun run CAS aircraft don't get "down and dirty" that much anymore.

why are the US Marines so adamant that they want the 'B'? We are now reading how any ship that carries this aircraft has to be adapted for that role, the aircraft will not be seen cross decking to ships that have not had this extra work and in this age of sequestration would there be huge and very significant savings if the US Marines purchased more fast jets but did away with their STOVL type fleet? More fast jets, more rotor wing aircraft but scrap the STOVL fleet and let the Navy pay the bill for sea based fast jets.
Does having the navy buy things produce a net savings in an age where funding is limited? or is it more expensive overall? it really depends when you are talking about cost. it needs to be remembered that all options are going to be "expensive" thats the nature of cutting edge military hardware, whether it is a Typhoon or Ford Class Carrier to carry additional marine aircraft.

I am going to take a strange position and say the F-35B is probably the cheapest solution for the UK because thats the one they are going with. the C has been proven to be more expensive to buy and convert the ships, so they went back to the B. the sea typhoon is the most expensive option, and hornets/rafales may still not make sense as they still have to pay to convert the ships. so comparing aircraft one for one ignores the big 1.4 billion pound elephant in the room for the UK.

so does it save on fixed wing aircraft cost while increasing cost in other areas?

Is having a very small number of very advanced, very expensive aircraft a better option that having excellent, more adaptable aircraft? Having the much cheaper option would give us so much more versatility and adaptability.
the F-35B would be more adaptable than the Typhoons, and yes cheaper to buy and operate as well. typhoons are very high end aircraft
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Old 1st Jul 2013, 14:37
  #2917 (permalink)  
 
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Pentagon resident Gloomy Gus, is Dr Gilmore, but when it comes to the progress of JSF, betting on gloom has been proven to be the sound strategy:

More F-35 Delays Predicted

Full report here:

Hearings & Testimony
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Old 1st Jul 2013, 17:02
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............Earlier DOT&E reports have been critical of the F-35's ability to tolerate accidental or combat damage, and the new report follows that pattern. Gilmore observes that lightning-tolerance testing is yet to be completed and that even then, the fighter's airframe will have to be inspected after known lightning strikes—including skin penetration—because it does not use lightning-tolerant fasteners, Conventional fasteners were selected to save weight. Lockheed Martin says that inflight lightning protection has been approved and the critical design review is closed, with more tests due later this year. On the ground, the current plan is that ground crews will purge the fuel systems of parked aircraft with nitrogen, repeating this process as often as once every 24 hr.

Gilmore also notes that the prognostic and health monitoring system, currently, is unable to provide timely detection of combat damage to the F-35B lift-fan system, which “might fail catastrophically before the pilot can react” during transition to vertical landing. Lockheed Martin comments that “in the remote chance of a failure, the pilot would auto-eject.”
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Old 1st Jul 2013, 18:21
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On the ground, the current plan is that ground crews will purge the fuel systems of parked aircraft with nitrogen, repeating this process as often as once every 24 hr.
Nice one.
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Old 1st Jul 2013, 18:24
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Lockheed Martin comments that “in the remote chance of a failure, the pilot would auto-eject.”
What's this? HAL ejects the pilot, rather than the pilot pulling the handle?

The quoted statement smells a bit of fish, does it not?
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