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UK P8 Poseidon

Old 8th Jun 2015, 11:09
  #61 (permalink)  
 
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Vote in favour -"Aye". brilliant. Now watch someone try to morph it into a Har........................
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Old 8th Jun 2015, 11:57
  #62 (permalink)  
 
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I was wondering as the other Boeing COTS FMS purchase (C-17) uses contacted spares and upgrade programme I believe. Very successfully I hear.
That is generally correct. The UK C-17 program buys parts from the same worldwide parts system as USAF, and all maintenance beyond home station is done at the same depots as USAF C-17s, with one exception. All UK C-17s only go to USAF's San Antonio depot, and not any other depot. The San Antonio depot is operated by Boeing. The other depots are government run. San Antonio has also done some P-8 mod work for USN.
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Old 8th Jun 2015, 12:49
  #63 (permalink)  
 
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Nutloose, you are a very naughty boy!
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Old 8th Jun 2015, 15:01
  #64 (permalink)  
 
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By Trim Stab:

"If the P8 is purchased, would the RAF necessarily be the automatic choice of service to operate it? Might it be more sensible to let the RN be the lead service, given that the entire airborne ASW structure is going to have to be rebuilt from scratch?"

Surely the answer to that is "Joint Force P8"? The concept of Jointery is well established and (with teething problems) Joint Force Harrier and Joint Helicopter Command have operated OK. No doubt there will be howls about that but it has to be the template going forward and familiarity in Joint units is growing all the time.

The RAF clearly have the large jet experience and the maintenance teams; there are also the "seedcorn" teams. The RN trains sonar, radar and EW operators, and ASW Observers and Aircrewmen, so could provide some crew positions. Clearly many of the RNs sonar, radar and EW operators are ship based but could be trained to enhance their core skills to operate within an MPA, with the help of the seedcorn staff?
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Old 8th Jun 2015, 15:29
  #65 (permalink)  
 
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Surely spares for the P-8 would be fairly painless as the airframe is pretty much a 737 and although there are clearly plenty of modified areas the civilian commonality with the most common civil aircraft means it would be pretty cheap.
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Old 8th Jun 2015, 15:53
  #66 (permalink)  
 
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Andyy

Your argument has considerable merit but is largely based on logistic and other non operational considerations. I wonder how confident the RN would be that the RAF would always give sufficient priority to naval requirements if push came to shove in battling for finance and resources needed for effective use of the capability.
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Old 8th Jun 2015, 15:55
  #67 (permalink)  
 
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I, for one, would quite happily serve in a "JF P8" if ever a thing stood up.
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Old 8th Jun 2015, 18:59
  #68 (permalink)  
 
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The problem the FAA would have is manning the thing. A P8 sqn would require about as many people as the all the lynx and ASW Merlin sqns combined.
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Old 8th Jun 2015, 19:04
  #69 (permalink)  
 
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Genstabler, my argument is largely based on the fact that ASW/ ASuW is a core competence of the RN and a large proportion of its manpower.

If UK PLC decides that it needs an MPA fleet then having one training stream for ASW/ASuW operators would seem to be the most efficient way forward. I'm not aware that the RAF has a training stream for those skill sets anymore?

Similarly the RN has no experience of flying and maintaining large multi-engine a/c so keep that with the RAF within JFP8.

JFP8 will primarily be a maritime asset, by definition, so OPCOM/OPCON of JFP8 would come under the appropriate JTF cell within "CinCFleet", surely?
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Old 8th Jun 2015, 19:14
  #70 (permalink)  
 
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I dont know about the RN not being able to man it, the RAF are in the same boat.
Already short of Navs for existing commitments, there aren't enough Pilots or WSOps to man the ISTAR platforms we've already got either let alone a fleet of 12 new jets.

Manning and Recruiting are years behind the curve if this project is actually going to happen.
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Old 8th Jun 2015, 19:26
  #71 (permalink)  
 
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Obviously "joint" is the way ahead then - the RN and RAF can "not man it" together. Each can then blame the other for failure to achieve manning levels.

Drag all the seedcorn back and you have enough personnel to get one or two airborne, which will be enough for the politicians to say "look, we have restored the capability...."

At least Manning/Recruiting have a chance to restore Pilot and WSOp numbers. I don't know where the shortage of Navs (shouldn't that be WSOs? ) for existing commitments is (Tornado?) but if there are plans to put them on P-8 (but why should there be?) the only obvious training pipeline for them is RN Observer training, and presumably that has a limited capacity, and why should the RN give any of it up?
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Old 8th Jun 2015, 19:56
  #72 (permalink)  
 
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From an impartial observer

As a civvie reader, with no vested interest, apart from National Security, might I offer a couple of thoughts?

1: It's already been suggested that any P8 be a 'joint force' asset. Why not resurrect the 360 Sqn number plate? It might have an RAF CO / RN Exec, rotating. Then:

2: Base the jets at Leeming, half way between norf and sarf with a reasonable amount of ramp space......

Give me a few minutes to dig the slit trench in the garden please, then feel free.....
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Old 8th Jun 2015, 20:15
  #73 (permalink)  
 
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Manning and Recruiting are years behind the curve if this project is actually going to happen.
That maybe so, but I would suggest that they are innocent given that they recruit, train and man establishments.

Since the kipper fleet and its establishment was binned circa 2010, its not really Personal Management task is it? It's essentially a political (or at least high-level policy if you prefer) conundrum - both in origin and solution.

If the Kipper Fleet, and its establishment, is resurrected, Manning and Recruitment get the unenviable task of filling all those new posts.

That will be a bigger challenge by far than buying a dozen or so kites off the Americans.

But...here's hoping.
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Old 8th Jun 2015, 20:34
  #74 (permalink)  
 
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I think Joint Force is the only option. Engineering could be largely contracted out as it will mostly based in UK or MOBs abroad. Pilots could be a combination of RN and RAF retread pilots until the training stream gets going.

The RN is the only Service conducting officer Rear Crew training (ie Observers) so the logical thing would be to expand this. There is also another factor that argues for this route...career development. The requirement for officer rear crew will be relatively small so it makes no sense for the RAF to want to establish such a small cadre, whereas the RN can broaden such people into RW Obs and PWOs.

WSOps could come from both Services but career management would become an issue for the RAF.

All in all a bit of a mess really, but this will happen with so few airframes (projected). However, I expect the RAF to fight hard to own the full capability and muddle through.
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Old 8th Jun 2015, 20:44
  #75 (permalink)  
 
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WSOps could come from both Services but career management would become an issue for the RAF.
Bismark, with that deep insight into NCA manning you are AMP and I claim my 5
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Old 8th Jun 2015, 20:44
  #76 (permalink)  
 
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Where? Well the Government and the MoD won't put them north of the border. The risk of spending millions on the infrastructure and support with the re-emerging threat of an independence vote would make that a non-starter, unless they want to use it as a lever. But that would be a massive political gamble.

Waddo springs to mind. Fairly central for the North and the SWApps. And it has all the secure connections.


Who? Well, the FAA would just love to take on maritime patrol. But they simply can't get there from here. They simply cannot generate that many trained personnel and everything needed to support them in the timeframe. The Navy has new ships to man. A whole new, big role is never going to happen.

How? Guernsey Girl, just saw your post. WSOs are in short supply. But, consider this; where will the money come from to fund P8? Something else will have to go in SDSR. Maybe something with navs based north of the border. Hopefully, this could be in time to harvest the seed corn in the west for the rest of the crew. How else will this happen?
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Old 8th Jun 2015, 20:46
  #77 (permalink)  
 
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In terms of funding, P8 with AGS could replace Sentinel which would give an element of the ongoing support costs from an existing budget AND free up space at Waddington.
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Old 8th Jun 2015, 20:56
  #78 (permalink)  
 
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With you there, Dave.
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Old 8th Jun 2015, 21:26
  #79 (permalink)  
 
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BobWard - as a founder member of 360 I'll go with that one
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Old 8th Jun 2015, 21:30
  #80 (permalink)  
 
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Engineering could be largely contracted out as it will mostly based in UK or MOBs abroad
Let's not get too carried away with all this "engineering on the cheap" stuff hey (read the comments above on the C17 and thought the same thing).

MPA/MMA and C17, apples and oranges. MPA needs significant frontline engineering support in the shape of armourers and avionics to maintain and support a ton of weaponry and sensors.

When the RAF binned maritime about 3500 posts went at the same time. They were not all maritime related of course, but a hell of a lot of them were.

Even if you leverage every single "leaning" trick in the book, the RAF (and/or RN) are still going to have create a lot of new posts.

...and that costs a ton of money, as everybody should know.
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