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UK Maritime Patrol Aircraft - An Urgent Requirement

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UK Maritime Patrol Aircraft - An Urgent Requirement

Old 12th Apr 2014, 08:46
  #341 (permalink)  
 
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Oh, and had the MRA4, made it into service, it had the ability to carry 6 Storm Shadow with a 14 hour loiter abilty
Yeah, dream on matey. Even if waste o'space could have made it work, then the Libyan Mig 23s and Mig 25s would have made mincemeat of it - from the squandering of £4Bn on MRA4 we were unable to afford anything to protect it! Sounds rather like the carriers we're buying!

Nice mock up photo from the company, though. It certainly hooked a few into thinking it might happen!

iRaven

PS. Why would we bother when the RN could deliver TLAM from a boat instead?
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Old 12th Apr 2014, 09:56
  #342 (permalink)  
 
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Yeah, dream on matey. Even if waste o'space could have made it work, then the Libyan Mig 23s and Mig 25s would have made mincemeat of it
I have not seen such utter nonsense for a long time; you must be a FJ driver. Hilarious! I always thought that the purpose of a long range stand off missile was so that you stand off!! Nice try iRaven but I think you'll a little foolish with that one!!

And as for this:

PS. Why would we bother when the RN could deliver TLAM from a boat instead?
Mainly because subs take days to get within firing range; just look how long it's taking to get our T-boat into the hunt for MH370. Using your logic there is no need for SS on Tornado either. Carry on believing your own propaganda
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Old 12th Apr 2014, 10:11
  #343 (permalink)  
 
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Chaps,

Just a word to the wise...it's "hydrophone". But please continue with your insightful, adroit and well-researched musings on maritime operations. They are an education to us all.
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Old 12th Apr 2014, 13:12
  #344 (permalink)  
 
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Good News

The performance of the "allied" crew indeed shows that the skills needed for MPA operations are alive and well, it also shows that it won't be long before funds are found to buy the P-8 in the near future with the MPA task being split between manned and unmanned aircraft.

Those who morn the Nimrod should understand that the cutting up of the new aircraft was nessesary to show BAe that UK PLC was would no longer put up with being ripped off by a company that continually overcharged and underperformed. ( you would have thought BAe would have got the message when they did not get the Buldog life extension program )

My hope is that the RAF will soon have a fleet of P-8's that are built to the US Navy spec with as little UK kit as posable. Then we will have a fighting chance of getting the MPA role filled on time and on budget.
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Old 12th Apr 2014, 19:32
  #345 (permalink)  
 
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I have not seen such utter nonsense for a long time; you must be a FJ driver. Hilarious! I always thought that the purpose of a long range stand off missile was so that you stand off!!
A Mig25 flies at about 25 miles a minute (faster if flat out), and if the Grimrod is staggering along at 7 miles a minute (at best, these weapons are draggy!), that is a closure of 32 miles a minute - your stand off isn't going to last very long. I'd give you 7-10 minutes at best before a missile launch!

Seeing as Storm Shadow is supposed to be a weapon to take down an IADS, floating along at 'standoff' of a couple of hundred miles in a MPA that does probably .7M at best with all these mythical Storm Shadows underneath, would make it very vulnerable. Now you could jettison them all when the Foxbat or Foxhound makes the charge - but hey, that's a mission kill anyway. There won't be any escort to look after you because we had to shelve 3 sqns of FJs to buy the great white elephant at £3.8Bn (read MPA pretending to be a stategic bomber).

Anyway, I'll go back to my 'utter nonsense' and dream of FJ 'seedcorn' because we're going to need that soon with the 7 remaining FJ FL sqns. Maybe they'll send me to Miramar to fly the Hornet!

iRaven
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Old 12th Apr 2014, 22:52
  #346 (permalink)  
 
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A Mig25 flies at about 25 miles a minute (faster if flat out), and if the Grimrod is staggering along at 7 miles a minute
Thank you for the lesson on closure rates; strangely enough I've been there and done that. In the Libya case though I don't remember many Mig 25/31s coming out very far. For that matter I don't remember many Iraqi ones doing so either, so let's ignore that as an irrelevance. By the way it's N not Gr.

seeing as Storm Shadow is supposed to be a weapon to take down an IADS
. Really? Oh well, I guess you know best. Or maybe not

It gets better though
shelve 3 sqns of fast jets
. What we lost was 2 sqns of MMA. The decision over FJ numbers was between GR7/9 and GR4. The money on MRA4 was already spent; support costs for your FJ fleet was down to support costs for your FJ Fleet. But never let the truth get in the way of a good rumour.

And if we want rumours, there is a rumour that the FJ-mafia got rid of MRA4 because an aircraft capable of delivering precision strike anywhere in the world within 24 hrs (mythical or not) undermined the whole raison d'être of the FJ fleet. But this is only a rumour of course.
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Old 12th Apr 2014, 23:07
  #347 (permalink)  
 
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Storm Shadow's range (using Jane's figure of 500km) is about half that of the AGM-86 and a quarter that of TLAM.... which means that its launch platform needs to be prepared to penetrate defences and achieve mission success even after losing a couple of aircraft. I wouldn't fancy trying that in the 'Rod, especially with no bailout option.
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Old 13th Apr 2014, 00:05
  #348 (permalink)  
 
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Yup, agreed, it was a cloud cuckoo land idea dreamt up by the company and those that grew up in the V force era. I'm sure the fighter jocks from our adversaries would have been rubbing their hands with glee at such an easy target.

By the way Stormshadow was developed to take down the hardened facilities that make up IADS. This is exactly what it was used for in GW2 on its first operational jaunt - I remember being with the mission planners down the hole at PJHQ.

As others have sensibly said on other threads recently on MPAs (and aren't there so many of them on Prune these days!), we must try not to dilute the argument for a MPA. They are not the panacea some would have us believe for LRSAR and also strategic strike in a contested air environment - but they are very good at patrolling large expanses of water and helping keep our V-boats safe. If only we hadn't wasted £3.8Bn on a sow's ear, we might have some MPAs in service and a few more FJ sqns out of the change.

LJ

PS. This made me laugh out loud...
What we lost was 2 sqns of MMA. The decision over FJ numbers was between GR7/9 and GR4. The money on MRA4 was already spent; support costs for your FJ fleet was down to support costs for your FJ Fleet. But never let the truth get in the way of a good rumour.
...this exactly why we have had to scrap Harrier and some Tornados early - we squandered the cash years before on the sow's ear's development. The defence budget isn't a bottomless pot you know, and the budget normally has a 10 year plan - so if you spend it on one project you won't be able to spend it on something else.
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Old 13th Apr 2014, 00:24
  #349 (permalink)  
 
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In March 2011 some 120 TLAMs launched by US and UK boats and some key strikes by B2s on airfields took down the Libyan's air defence capabilities in very short order. But the difference between the B2 and the N-word is that one is designed for first night attack with an exceptionally low RCS and the other is based upon a 1950s airliner for MPA duties with an RCS the size of Wembley Stadium!

"During Operation Ellamy, UK forces employed a combined total of around 80 Storm Shadow and Tomahawk land-attack missiles," armed forces minister Andrew Robathan said in response to a parliamentary question in the House of Commons on 22 October 2011. Whilst not giving away the precise numbers it is believed that 3/4s were TLAMs. They used these because of the significant number of SAMs (inlduding S-200 ) which is not the place to be waffling about in a modified MPA!

LJ

Last edited by Lima Juliet; 13th Apr 2014 at 00:38.
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Old 13th Apr 2014, 00:36
  #350 (permalink)  
 
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Oh how I love your patronising tone!
"Aren't there so many of them on here now?!"

Nice.

Last edited by betty swallox; 13th Apr 2014 at 23:46.
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Old 13th Apr 2014, 08:42
  #351 (permalink)  
 
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The defence budget isn't a bottomless pot you know, and the budget normally has a 10 year plan - so if you spend it on one project you won't be able to spend it on something else
. Well I will give you part of that. It may not be spent at all and may be taken as a savings measure. The FACT is that we did not lose any FJ sqns because of MRA4. Each of the armed forces equipment programmes has a separate funding line. Each one is funded in its procurement, thereafter you are into support costs. If Defence decided it couldn't fund 2 types of FJ (well 3 or 4 if you include SHar and Jag) it was because it decided it couldn't afford the in service support costs. You might just as well blame the loss of this FJ sqns on the cost of 2 new carriers, or the PFI FSTA programme or the FRES programme. As I'm sure you know the in service costs and the EP were two separate entities albeit contained within the Defence Budget. We did not lose sqns of FJs because of MRA4; we lost them because we had an unsustainable EP where more and more in service capability was being sacrificed because of exquisite future tech.
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Old 13th Apr 2014, 16:58
  #352 (permalink)  
 
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And just to return to Ravers ravings, no-one would be foolish enough to suggest tooled up MPAs flying down valleys at 200' or mixing it with Foxbats. The clue is in the word 'contested' as used by LJ.

A study of Ellamy shows how significant a part Canadian Auroras played and we all know Sentinel made it's mark. Neither at risk from Libyan fast air. Similarly, an orbit off the coast of Yugoslavia would have enabled weapons with endurance and virtually no risk to the platform.

Sadly, I can't see anything of the sort happening with the RAF. With our leadership being predominantly FJ, vision is totally lacking at the defend roles for FJ at all costs. Bet your life if we do regain an MPA Force, the new sqn bosses will come from the FJ world, because they are the ISR experts obviously!
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Old 13th Apr 2014, 17:09
  #353 (permalink)  
 
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Interesting article in the Telegraph
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Old 13th Apr 2014, 20:32
  #354 (permalink)  
 
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No matter how many wonderful drones we have pootling about in the transatlantic tracks and other busy air environments around our shores, in the words of one of those in the senior ranks of the MH370 search, "there is still no substitute for the Mark 1 Human Eyeball when looking for something in the ocean.....".
Even if we do have a fleet of drones, if something does require a search, there are no seats on a drone to fit a set of eyeballs, human, mark 1......


So with a drone, patrol yes, search maybe, rescue doubtful in the extreme.


One can only surmise that the MOD beancounters have reckoned that it's not economic to rescue aircrew. Must be marginally cheaper to train new crew, but then again, considering the lead time for new airframes, not surprising.
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Old 13th Apr 2014, 23:53
  #355 (permalink)  
 
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I can't see the UK going for just an MQ-4 solution - a P-8/Triton mix as with USN and RAAF perhaps, which would give mk 1 eyeball.

Regarding MH370 (Am I the only one who still thinks 'Spitfire' when they see that written?), the mk 1 eyeball isn't going to find an aluminium tube 4 miles underwater (Unlikely much else would either) and the surface searches haven't found anything anyway!
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Old 14th Apr 2014, 00:19
  #356 (permalink)  
 
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the mk 1 eyeball isn't going to find an aluminium tube 4 miles underwater
If the aluminium tube remained intact hitting the water at terminal velocity!

Even in a controlled ditching, the tube tends to get holes in it and floaty bits fall out or sticky out bits fall off and then, float.



^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
Aluminium tube was found on the bottom, even my mk1 eyeball with corrective lenses might spot that from the beam/observers window.

Last edited by Surplus; 14th Apr 2014 at 06:00.
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Old 14th Apr 2014, 13:24
  #357 (permalink)  
 
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Strategic Strike?

What a laugh ... we have only one long range bomber in the RAF right now and that is the Lancaster.

An ancient Tornado lugging around a pair of StormShadows looks very impressive taking off from the UK, to plug into tanker after tanker after tanker to reach it's intended target in North Africa.

But...

... in a fast changing land battle what are you going to do with your heavy expensive StormShadow whiz-bangs if the target it was programmed to hit (when it was back on the ground in the UK) is no longer viable?

The long range patrol 'plane that was cut up was going to be able to re-programme the missile whilst in the area (before launch) - to accommodated changes in the fluid target situation. Provided it could safely get to the launch point, one of the few reasons left to still have 'fighters'.
Whether it was ever affordable of course is debatable - but it did highlight an area which needs to be addressed.

If we need a long range penetrating bomber then we'd better get on with it and stop pretending that we have one. Strapping missiles under a patrol 'plane is just as much a lash-up as hanging them off swing-wing wonder jets designed to blat targets in East Germany and expecting them to fly well beyond their intended range.

For what it's worth a patrol plane could probably bring back unused missiles to base. Probably not something a Tonka could do ... or would do ... with the press watching.

Time we all stopped bashing each others favourite sacred cows, easy and amusing though this can be, and realise that a range of platforms (aircraft, ships and boats) is required if we are going to be asked to do a range of strategic roles.

This thread is supposed to be about a Long Range Maritime Patrol aircraft, it is amusing to read so much from people who clearly have little idea of what that actually means.

good fun though ...

ping
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Old 14th Apr 2014, 13:33
  #358 (permalink)  
 
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Party Animal. I think your view of the RAF as fast jet centred is a bit out of date. In a couple of years we will have a total of 6 FJ Squadrons. How do you think the "FJ Leadership" is doing at "Defending roles for FJ at all costs"?
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Old 15th Apr 2014, 09:34
  #359 (permalink)  
 
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Timelord,


total of 6 FJ Squadrons. How do you think the "FJ Leadership" is doing at "Defending roles for FJ at all costs"?


That's 6 more than the 4 relatively recent MPA sqns we used to have Timelord.
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Old 15th Apr 2014, 17:20
  #360 (permalink)  
 
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Rotary

Ah but look at all the Chinooks and re-vamped Puma's we're going to have.
Just the thing for shifting sandbags or dead badgers around the west country.
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