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Tornado Replacement

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Tornado Replacement

Old 21st Dec 2015, 09:18
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Tornado Replacement

Reuters, Sun Dec 20, 2015 5:09pm GMT: Germany plans to develop new fighter jet to replace Tornado

BERLIN

Germany plans to develop a new fighter jet to replace Tornado jets in the long term and it aims to hold initial talks with European partners in 2016 about what features they want in the aircraft, according to a document seen by Reuters on Sunday.

A draft document from the Defence Ministry on 'military aviation strategy' said it was still unclear whether the new jet would be manned or unmanned. It said it was also possible that the jet would be designed for both options and then be flown with or without a pilot depending on the type of deployment.

As it would be a European project, it is likely that one or more European companies would be chosen to develop the jet. The Tornado jet, which Germany has been using since 1981 - although it now also has the newer Eurofighter jet - was also made in an international consortium called Panavia.

At the same time, Germany's armed forces are looking into whether it would be possible to extend usage of the Tornado jets into the mid-2030s, the paper said. The Tornado jets had been due to be phased out in the mid-2020s.

A spokesman for the Defence Ministry said the document had not yet been agreed with the other ministries so he could not comment on it.

Last edited by ORAC; 21st Dec 2015 at 13:21. Reason: Sp
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Old 21st Dec 2015, 13:12
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The US are cracking on with an optionally manned long range bomber and I expect the UK might look into hanging onto the coat tails of that.

Last edited by Parson; 21st Dec 2015 at 13:33. Reason: typo
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Old 21st Dec 2015, 13:17
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Surprised they are not taking the UK view, i.e. "Get rid of Tornado anyway and just hang a few bombs on a couple of Typhoons remaining"


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Old 21st Dec 2015, 14:37
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Originally Posted by Parson View Post
The US are cracking on with an optionally manned long range bomber and I expect the UK might look into hanging onto the coat tails of that.
At currently quoted prices of $half a billion a pop, I reckon there's some doubt about that.
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Old 21st Dec 2015, 14:58
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At currently quoted prices of $half a billion a pop, I reckon there's some doubt about that.
Sheesh, it's only the price of 2 x F-35Bs....
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Old 21st Dec 2015, 15:14
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Under the current circumstances, is there anything particularly wrong with simply building more Tornadoes? We must have got them right by now... Can EJ200s be squeezed in?
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Old 21st Dec 2015, 16:29
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Can EJ200s be squeezed in?
I was going to say no chance, however, it seems weights are pretty close, the EJ is 2 and a bit feet longer, but a bit slimmer. Don't see how they could incorporate TR, but those dimensions do allow some fettling room for adaptors or airframe changes. The intake matching may be the biggest problem, along with all that extra power that would probably exceed the thrust mounting design limits.
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Old 21st Dec 2015, 17:48
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I was going to say no chance, however, it seems weights are pretty close, the EJ is 2 and a bit feet longer, but a bit slimmer. Don't see how they could incorporate TR, but those dimensions do allow some fettling room for adaptors or airframe changes. The intake matching may be the biggest problem, along with all that extra power that would probably exceed the thrust mounting design limits.
So it would stick out the end a bit, the tin work round the intakes may have to change, and they'd have to put a bigger end stop on the throttle lever. Doesn't sound like a complete no-no...

Perhaps if they left the intake design alone that might take care of the too-much-thrust problem?!

In the good ol' days they'd just sling a different engine in just to see what happened. Pretty difficult with the current layouts. I guess one advantage of pylon engine pods (B58 Hustler) is that you could improvise pretty easily. Perhaps we should be designing aircraft to look like that. Also I guess with the Sukhoi designs the engines are nearly podded below the air frame.
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Old 21st Dec 2015, 18:20
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I suggest they hand over the programme to the French and get them to build the whole thing.
the rafale turned out fine.


FISH.
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Old 21st Dec 2015, 18:52
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Whatever is proposed is going to have to be a sufficient leap in capability to make not buying off the shelf the best option. Its also going to have be cheap enough that ut can be built in sufficient quantity that its worth having.

Mr Fish, Maybe the Germans have realised just how expensive and painful joint ventures are, and will go it alone to get what they really want.

'Optionally manned' could mean the cockpit will be just another underwing stores option in future.
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Old 21st Dec 2015, 19:15
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The original EJ200 design specifically included a retrofit option for the Tornado.

The Germans last looked at fitting the EJ200 to some of their Tornados over 20 years ago. Where did all those years go?
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Old 21st Dec 2015, 19:23
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Wasn't the EJ200 originally intended to fit into an RB199 space, ie as a potential replacement powerplant for RB199-equipped aircraft? My memory grows dim... (I ask only because I've half a memory that it was, not because I'm suggesting a Tornado retrofit...) EDIT - posted before seeing JTO's comment.
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Old 21st Dec 2015, 21:51
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While the EJ200 was designed to fit in the RB199 hole, the ancillaries such as the gearbox aren't compatible (rotates different speed and direction) so it isn't too feasible to swap. ECS tappings are different too. I think studies were done for an ADV retrofit but the benefits were rather limited due to the high wing loading; there would only be a performance benefit where thrust was dominant.

EAP
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Old 21st Dec 2015, 22:19
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As an attack aircraft, what would improve on Tornado's seemingly great attributes as a weapon delivery/recce platform?? Where is it lacking? range, payload, speed, loiter time, reliability, sensors, interoperability. Is it difficult to operate?

It's obviously not the stealthiest, although I'm sure the intake ram addition would be a interesting story to read one day.

You don't see enough Tornadoes round these parts anymore, just loads of Typhoon flying out of Warton, which is better than nothing i suppose.
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Old 22nd Dec 2015, 03:33
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more wing area


more thrust


more reliability
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Old 22nd Dec 2015, 05:47
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Tornado replacement

Why does it need more wing area ?. I can agree on more thrust and more reliability. However, when the GR4 programme was configured, additional thrust was not a requirement, which now does seem very short sighted taking the current operational stores requirements. Not that long ago, an engine upgrade programme was proposed to either give additional thrust or life cycle enhancements. The engine reliability is now surprisingly good, especially with the GAF who have the improved Fan. EJ200 was looked at for the F3, but all the funding went to Typhoon. if the GAF are now only starting to look at a replacement, it looks like they will keep operating Tornado well beyond the 2025 timeframe and beyond. How very sensible of them.
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Old 22nd Dec 2015, 06:20
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More wing area?

To fly higher, turn better and carry more further.

Tornado was designed to be operated at low level high speed - it did that well but that environment is just an option not the automatic go to tactic these days.
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Old 22nd Dec 2015, 08:09
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Originally Posted by Parson View Post
The US are cracking on with an optionally manned long range bomber and I expect the UK might look into hanging onto the coat tails of that.
We are in with the French for a Taranis/nEUROn derivative

Award of 120M Anglo-French Defence Co-Operation Contract

In the meantime, further F-35s are likely to be the short term Tornado replacement
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Old 22nd Dec 2015, 09:06
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Oh, if we're going down this path just build some new Buccaneers...
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Old 22nd Dec 2015, 09:32
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Oh, if we're going down this path just build some new Buccaneers...
Great plane, antiquated avionics, etc.

It's interesting that there's not really anyone shouting that the systems on Tornado need chucking out and replacing. If the systems are generally OK and don't need a whole lot of updating, why not re-use them, keep them in a Tornado-shaped arrangement, and clad them with a new build Tornado-ish air-frame?

I guess we could make the air-frame bigger, maybe sit the crew side by side in an escape capsule, give it bigger engines and lots of fuel for huge range. Just so long as we don't put the digits 111 into its name...
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