Go Back  PPRuNe Forums > Aircrew Forums > Military Aviation
Reload this Page >

F-35 Cancelled, then what ?

Military Aviation A forum for the professionals who fly military hardware. Also for the backroom boys and girls who support the flying and maintain the equipment, and without whom nothing would ever leave the ground. All armies, navies and air forces of the world equally welcome here.

F-35 Cancelled, then what ?

Old 31st Jul 2016, 12:01
  #9501 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Welwyn Garden City
Age: 59
Posts: 1,193
MSOCS

Indeed, Th comments from Sir Stephen recently suggest that the additional purchase of 90 F-35s is quite likely, it would in the long run perhaps make sense to order 90 F-35As for the RAF and eventually hand all 48 Bs to the RN.

FB
Finningley Boy is offline  
Old 31st Jul 2016, 12:17
  #9502 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: England's green and pleasant land
Posts: 697
Originally Posted by Finningley Boy View Post
MSOCS

Indeed, Th comments from Sir Stephen recently suggest that the additional purchase of 90 F-35s is quite likely, it would in the long run perhaps make sense to order 90 F-35As for the RAF and eventually hand all 48 Bs to the RN.

FB
Well, I can't see additional Typhoon being bought in future, only upgrades for most of the fleet. Allied to a commitment to 138 F-35s I can absolutely see a buy of a different variant. Why not? It fulfils the RAF FCAS requirement while still retaining the right number of F-35B to complement our two carriers.

I don't see a hand over of all F-35Bs though. A key tenet is the shore-based expeditionary capability the B brings. I therefore see the B continuing to be jointly operated by RN and RAF.
MSOCS is offline  
Old 31st Jul 2016, 12:22
  #9503 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Sussex
Age: 61
Posts: 371
MSOCS:-
PhilipG, software stability has been sorted for some time now. It was an issue, but no more. As to F-35 needing its hand holding in missions you've got me; I've no idea what you're on about.

MSOCS this document on Aviation Week was the basis of my comments.

http://aviationweek.com/site-files/a...l%20Report.pdf
I extract the more pertinent part that I based my comments on: -
The program terminated Block 2B developmental flight testing in May 2015, delivering Block 2B capability with deficiencies and limited combat capability. The Marine Corps declared IOC at the end of July 2015. However, if used in combat, the Block 2B F-35 will need support from command and control elements to avoid threats, assist in target acquisition, and control weapons employment for the limited weapons carriage available (i.e., two bombs, two air-to-air missiles). Block 2B deficiencies in fusion, electronic warfare, and weapons employment result in ambiguous threat displays, limited ability to respond to threats, and a requirement for off-board sources to provide accurate coordinates for precision attack. Since Block 2B F-35 aircraft are limited to two air-to-air missiles, they will require other support if operations are contested by enemy fighter aircraft. The program deferred deficiencies and weapons delivery accuracy (WDA) test events from Block 2B to Block 3i and Block 3F, a necessary move in order to transition the testing enterprise to support Block 3i flight testing and Block 3F development, both of which began later than planned in the program’s Integrated Master Schedule (IMS).

Philip

It would seem that the Pentagon has at least two voices...
PhilipG is offline  
Old 31st Jul 2016, 12:30
  #9504 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: England's green and pleasant land
Posts: 697
Philip. 2B or not 2B. In this case, I'm referring to the stability improvements (and others) at 3i. USAF is declaring IOC for their fleet with 3i as a baseline.

Lt Gen 'Dog' Davis has already alluded to the 2B fusion issues and workarounds from 2015 but the jets are now operating 3i which is better all round and doesn't exhibit the instabilities reported in 2B.

If the USAF are declaring IOC this week (likely, but not guaranteed) then I trust their due diligence in testing every aspect of the operational benchmark they set themselves.

Worth bearing in mind that most of these major 'deficiencies' are software based and that there is more than one drop of 3i software.
MSOCS is offline  
Old 31st Jul 2016, 14:17
  #9505 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: London, New York, Paris, Moscow.
Posts: 3,633
A key tenet is the shore-based expeditionary capability the B brings


Yes. Of course. It does. Just like. Any other. Aircraft. But where. Does the. On shore. Support come. From? Off the. Boat?
glad rag is offline  
Old 31st Jul 2016, 14:24
  #9506 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: England's green and pleasant land
Posts: 697
Do try to keep up JATK.
MSOCS is offline  
Old 31st Jul 2016, 14:43
  #9507 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Home
Posts: 3,400
Originally Posted by MSOCS View Post
I don't see a hand over of all F-35Bs though. A key tenet is the shore-based expeditionary capability the B brings. I therefore see the B continuing to be jointly operated by RN and RAF.
The problem with that, of course, is that if all are B model, then there are enough that the Carriers can have sufficient aircraft to at least provide a modicum of capability and the RAF can do expeditionary shore based with the rest.

If only 48 are B, then you are trying to fill carriers and go ashore with 48?

Methinks the RN will cry foul, and for good reason.
Tourist is offline  
Old 31st Jul 2016, 14:50
  #9508 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Sussex
Age: 61
Posts: 371
Call me confused etc, I understood that the difference between an aircraft running 2B and 3I was basically that those running 3I had gone through a technical refresh, no added capability, just a different platform, like running Office 95 on Windows XP.
At one point this summer I read that 2B was much more stable than 3I, as is said, there must have been some upgrades. As a matter of interest what software version were the USAF aircraft that came over the pond? I personally thought it was brave to try a long flight with a 3I aircraft, when it had been published that they needed to reboot every X hours, it would not have been too helpful if one had ditched whilst rebooting west of Ireland, no let's not change to MRA4 discussions.
As I said a bit of clarity would be helpful, even if it is as basic as the software instabilities in 3Ix have been sorted out in 3Ix2, as proven by Y.....
PhilipG is offline  
Old 31st Jul 2016, 15:06
  #9509 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: England's green and pleasant land
Posts: 697
Tourist, there isn't a go embarked AND go ashore when you haven't got that many. It's one or the other. For one operation you may need to be embarked, for another ashore etc. You may go from ship to shore or shore to ship in the period of an operation if that's best.

If the analysis shows we need to do both then we'd buy more F-35B, clearly.

There's no "foul" to cry in this case.
MSOCS is offline  
Old 31st Jul 2016, 15:46
  #9510 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Welwyn Garden City
Age: 59
Posts: 1,193
The problem with that, of course, is that if all are B model, then there are enough that the Carriers can have sufficient aircraft to at least provide a modicum of capability and the RAF can do expeditionary shore based with the rest.

If only 48 are B, then you are trying to fill carriers and go ashore with 48?

Methinks the RN will cry foul, and for good reason.
Ok I'll say it then, is it not the case that the F-35A has a superior performance, range and payload etc. Just that it needs to take a good run down the runway to get aloft and a reasonable length of runway to land again. But at least the Navy will have sufficient airframes to make a single carrier deployment a full one.

Best Regards,

FB
Finningley Boy is offline  
Old 31st Jul 2016, 16:17
  #9511 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: London, New York, Paris, Moscow.
Posts: 3,633
Originally Posted by MSOCS View Post
If the analysis shows we need to do both then we'd buy more F-35, clearly.
Oh no we won't be, anytime.

UK conventional procurement being hollowed out to pay for Successor SSBNs | IHS Jane's 360
glad rag is offline  
Old 31st Jul 2016, 16:51
  #9512 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: England's green and pleasant land
Posts: 697
JATK, there's a commitment to 138. I'm not suggesting more but yes, there could be less than 138 when all is said and done.

The question was what proportion would be Bs and As. That's a great one and will be answered at SDSR20. So, just wait out.
MSOCS is offline  
Old 31st Jul 2016, 17:49
  #9513 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: London
Posts: 7,085
No way we'll ever buy 138 - the cash just isn't there - the latest MoD forecast (see other thread) is that we'll be restricted to £ 525 mm a year for new airframes of all types by the early 2020's.... and that was before BREXIT
Heathrow Harry is offline  
Old 31st Jul 2016, 23:23
  #9514 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 264
Ah yes, in the same way that there was no way we would buy any P8s because there was no money.

Don't forget that the commitment to 138 is over the life of the programme, and that's a very long time. I understand current plans are for an eventual 4 front line sqns.

Seems to me that a plausible scenario (before the idea of a split buy was raised) was therefore a maximum holding of 90 or so airframes at any given time, with a much later buy of 48 or so late model Bs to replace the initial 48 and cover the second half of the carriers' lives.

Would a force comprising 2 sqns of B and 2 of A work?
Frostchamber is offline  
Old 1st Aug 2016, 04:29
  #9515 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Australia OZ
Age: 71
Posts: 1,938
On previous page 'PhilipG' enquired: [software? - guess 3i - clues: https://www.flightglobal.com/news/ar...softwa-425098/ ]
"...As a matter of interest what software version were the USAF aircraft that came over the pond? I personally thought it was brave to try a long flight with a 3I aircraft, when it had been published that they needed to reboot every X hours, it would not have been too helpful if one had ditched whilst rebooting west of Ireland, no let's not change to MRA4 discussions.
As I said a bit of clarity would be helpful, even if it is as basic as the software instabilities in 3Ix have been sorted out in 3Ix2, as proven by Y....."
First F-35A Overseas Deployment 05 Jul 2016 John A. Tirpak
"...[Maj. William Andreotta] reported no inflight problems and no software instability of the three F-35As, and he also said there were no problems with the passing of fuel, which had been an issue as recently as last fall. At that time, software was slowing the passage of fuel near max fill, to avoid overpressuring the system—causing excessive time on boom—and program director Lt. Gen. Christopher Bogdan reported that a software fix was in the works.

MSgt. Ed Deleon, chief maintainer for the RIAT mission, reported that the F-35’s Autonomic Logistics Information System, or ALIS, has worked perfectly during the deployment, but was being accessed through secure internet, and not through the ALIS “deployment” package...."
http://www.airforcemag.com/DRArchive...eployment.aspx

Last edited by SpazSinbad; 1st Aug 2016 at 05:44.
SpazSinbad is offline  
Old 1st Aug 2016, 22:00
  #9516 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Middle America
Age: 79
Posts: 1,147
MSOCS,
unlike the F-35 which will return more to the Exchequer than we put in, when all is totted up
Please provide an explanation why you think what you think Turbine D. If you're saying it because the Program won't make the 2300 jets touted, then sure, that diminishes the return; by exactly how much will be determined by the final production run numbers. You clearly seem to know these so do share.
1. Assume for a moment the US DOD will purchase the full allotment of F-35s, all models. Here are the current prices being planned on and proposed to Congress:

Budget Costs for F-35B $152.8M for FY 2016 aircraft to $140.1M for FY 2017 aircraft ($143.8M average cost each for 311 aircraft)

First real US Navy buys for F35C start in FY 2018 estimated at $234.8M each (4 aircraft)($144.6M average cost each for 369 aircraft)

F-15A gross/weapon system cost FY2016 $120.8M, FY2017 $113.07M($121.1M average cost each for 1763 aircraft)

Keep in mind the average costs include aircraft that have been built and are being flight tested of which many or all will require retrofitting and upgrades once true production is achieved. These figures come from financial data from the US DOD.

2. So with this in mind I am looking at a bigger picture than perhaps you are as it may apply to UK procurement and your questions. First and foremost, unless the Bank of England purchased US dollars prior to Brexit and set those dollars aside for F-35B purchases and perhaps F-35As, you can plan to pay 15% or more than thought before Brexit. This is due to the value of the Pound's fall in value verses the US Dollar. This disparity will not be self correcting anytime soon.

3. IMO, You will not receive any rebates from L-M. Currently, in fact, there are deadlocked talks going on between L-M & the US DOD as to what future F-35 cost and prices are going to be. Up until now pricing for the most part has been based on cost plus contracts, a sweetheart deal for L-M. The plan as put forth by the DOD procurement chief has been to "gradually" move to fixed pricing. However, he and the DOD are under great pressure to make this move sooner, not later, ASAP. L-M has threatened the US DOD with the need to increase prices as they will have to borrow money to pay suppliers if the pricing issues aren't resolved very soon. L-M announced very recently their quarterly profits were near their highest levels ever, mainly due to the F-35 program, which is like throwing gasoline on the fire. This profit windfall will end with fixed pricing, but the financial gurus on Wall Street will want more, not less as well as the L-M stockholders, for every fiscal quarter going forward. L-M will have to deliver one way or the other, price increases for aircraft and/or price increases for spare parts, same goes for P&W engines and spare prices, productivity and/or material cost reductions reach a point of no return.

4. You should know just as the UK has defense budget restraints, so does the US. The US Navy isn't going to roll over and play dead on affordability of the F35B and F-35Cs. There are other crucial items that have to be addressed and a major one is this:

10 U.S. Code § 5062 - United States Navy: composition; functions
(a)The Navy, within the Department of the Navy, includes, in general, naval combat and service forces and such aviation as may be organic therein. The Navy shall be organized, trained, and equipped primarily for prompt and sustained combat incident to operations at sea. It is responsible for the preparation of naval forces necessary for the effective prosecution of war except as otherwise assigned and, in accordance with integrated joint mobilization plans, for the expansion of the peacetime components of the Navy to meet the needs of war.
(b)The naval combat forces of the Navy shall include not less than 11 operational aircraft carriers. For purposes of this subsection, an operational aircraft carrier includes an aircraft carrier that is temporarily unavailable for worldwide deployment due to routine or scheduled maintenance or repair.
(c)All naval aviation shall be integrated with the naval service as part thereof within the Department of the Navy. Naval aviation consists of combat and service and training forces, and includes land-based naval aviation, air transport essential for naval operations, all air weapons and air techniques involved in the operations and activities of the Navy, and the entire remainder of the aeronautical organization of the Navy, together with the personnel necessary therefor.
(d)The Navy shall develop aircraft, weapons, tactics, technique, organization, and equipment of naval combat and service elements. Matters of joint concern as to these functions shall be coordinated between the Army, the Air Force, and the Navy.

Sean J. Stackley, assistant Navy secretary for research, development, and acquisition and the three admirals who joined him in testifying before Congress said there was little hope in the Navy getting back up to 11 carriers before 2021, when the USS Gerald R. Ford is finally scheduled to come on line after lengthy construction delays and cost overruns.
"There's no doubt that being at 10 carriers ... is exacerbated by the fact that the Ford won't be now deployable until '21," said Rear Admiral Thomas Moore, program executive officer for aircraft carriers. "The law says, you have to be 11 carriers, but it's only measured by when we commission Ford ... We’ll be in a period of 10 carriers here until about 2021."

When all is said and done, the Ford carrier will cost nearly $18B and before it is deployed, another one will have to be started so the oldest of the existing of the 10 can be retired. To make matters worse, the 10 carriers are deployed for longer periods of time and when they come in, the repairs are more costly and lengthy to the point where only 5 carriers may be at sea at a given time as recently evidenced.

5.There are far greater needs than the singular most expensive program, the F-35 across all the Services and there will be no favoritism given to the F-35 Program. So you can see the play going on here. Besides, there is the spares and maintenance cost issues, yet to be determined as time goes on. So you tell me, how many can the UK afford to buy?

Also, tell me why the F-35 or any aircraft for that matter returns money to the Exchequer (Bank of England these days), I don't believe any have or do, nor does that happen here in the US, e.g., money returned to the US Treasury. We have acres of old planes parked out in Arizona, baking in the sun. The aircraft that are operational are an asset, but don't generate cash, nor do the ones in Arizona.
Turbine D is online now  
Old 1st Aug 2016, 23:28
  #9517 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Arizona, USA
Posts: 790
4 x F-35A Formation - 34 FS, Hill AFB, Utah

Nice 4-ship formation flying.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2ZmIeYtrUSs

Last edited by RAFEngO74to09; 1st Aug 2016 at 23:47.
RAFEngO74to09 is online now  
Old 1st Aug 2016, 23:30
  #9518 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: England's green and pleasant land
Posts: 697
From a UK Govt perspective, we are buying X many aircraft at "various" prices as we slide on down the production cost curve over time. 500 British companies manufacture components for every F-35 built (or to be built), most of which are agnostic of variant. So, over the life of the Program, those 500 British companies earn revenue from Y (total Program build) aircraft and pay tax to the Exchequer on those earnings. Y is much greater than X and the concomitant tax on Y is around 2-3 times the predicted cost for X.

That's Level 1 partnership right there,in a nutshell. Now, I already intimated that reality and paper promises rarely match. So, we'll see right? None of the above is in MY midnight wet dreams though, I can heartily assure you:

http://aviationweek.com/shownews/uk-...ions-f-35-work

Last edited by MSOCS; 1st Aug 2016 at 23:55.
MSOCS is offline  
Old 2nd Aug 2016, 01:25
  #9519 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: London, New York, Paris, Moscow.
Posts: 3,633
Originally Posted by MSOCS View Post
From a UK Govt perspective, we are buying X many aircraft at "various" prices as we slide on down the production cost curve over time. 500 British companies manufacture components for every F-35 built (or to be built), most of which are agnostic of variant. So, over the life of the Program, those 500 British companies earn revenue from Y (total Program build) aircraft and pay tax to the Exchequer on those earnings. Y is much greater than X and the concomitant tax on Y is around 2-3 times the predicted cost for X.

That's Level 1 partnership right there,in a nutshell. Now, I already intimated that reality and paper promises rarely match. So, we'll see right? None of the above is in MY midnight wet dreams though, I can heartily assure you:

U.K. To Earn Billions On F-35 Work | ShowNews content from Aviation Week
Yes, the song remains the same but it is 30 years on, now, you know...

" 500 British companies manufacture components for every F-35 built" OR . "those 500 British companies earn revenue from"

Name them, and list their results from Companies House, who, luckily, will have just updated their 6 monthlies.

At least Td detailed his precis, your is nothing but Toby Jug on crystal meh...

Go on then....
glad rag is offline  
Old 2nd Aug 2016, 01:26
  #9520 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: London, New York, Paris, Moscow.
Posts: 3,633
Originally Posted by RAFEngO74to09 View Post
Nice 4-ship formation flying.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2ZmIeYtrUSs
Yeah flying, nice. Lo viz black ideal for daytime CAS yeah baby...
glad rag is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.