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UK Strategic Defence Review 2020 - get your bids in now ladies & gents

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UK Strategic Defence Review 2020 - get your bids in now ladies & gents

Old 2nd Feb 2023, 17:58
  #961 (permalink)  
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The difference between 3 and 5 is states as £1.89B vs £2.16B = £270M or £135M each.

Strikes me as a hell of a bargain.

Originally Posted by NutLoose View Post
Well, think Carriers, the norm was one at sea, one on refit and one working up... which makes a whole mockery of buying two.
​​​​​​​
So does buying 2 but only the aircraft for 1 as things stand….
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Old 2nd Feb 2023, 18:56
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I didn't think we had even the aircraft or crews for one at the moment................
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Old 2nd Feb 2023, 20:10
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Originally Posted by Asturias56
I didn't think we had even the aircraft or crews for one at the moment................
Well your first three words were accurate at least.
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Old 3rd Feb 2023, 18:26
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Originally Posted by Asturias56
Oh God - we're down to the "aspiration" stage............................

How on earth is that an 'aspiration'? I don't see how three iarcarft can be enough to assure availaibilty of AEW continuous cover. Between routine maintenance, deep overhaul requirements and random day-to-day line failures, surely the sensible view from the top of the Air Force ought to be, firmly - " We NEED five AEW aircraft to be able to do a minimum realistic and worthwhile job. Anything less is kidding ourselves."
That might not be a politically popular answer; but popularity is not a job requirement. Surely honesty is what is needed.
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Old 4th Feb 2023, 09:10
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When I look back over the years when we had NO aircraft and the gnashing of teeth -then hey we're actually going to get some!!

nd a year or so later the seeming inevitable cuts and now "aspirations" again

It really makes me want to weep.
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Old 4th Feb 2023, 09:21
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So the RAF went from 8 x Nimrod AEW3 (on which £1Bn had been spent before it was binned) to 7 x E-3D, to be replaced by 5 x Wedgetails.....to now only 3?
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Old 4th Feb 2023, 10:36
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Originally Posted by BEagle
So the RAF went from 8 x Nimrod AEW3 (on which £1Bn had been spent before it was binned) to 7 x E-3D, to be replaced by 5 x Wedgetails.....to now only 3?

But are wanting to go back to 5

“The integrated review refresh is ongoing. The decisions are for the secretary of state. I think what we would recognize as a future fleet and an aspiration of a future fleet is five [Wedgetails],” said Wigston, who is due to stand down from his position as chief of the air staff later this year.
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Old 5th Feb 2023, 10:01
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Originally Posted by BEagle
So the RAF went from 8 x Nimrod AEW3 (on which £1Bn had been spent before it was binned) to 7 x E-3D, to be replaced by 5 x Wedgetails.....to now only 3?

No, the RAF never had any operational Nimrod AEW3, and the order was actually for 11 aircraft. In point of fact the RAF AEW time line is:

No operational AEW aircraft at all until 4 Neptune AEW conversions for a limited time in the mid to late 1950's. Then no AEW aircraft at all until 1972 when 12 Shackleton AEW2 were introduced. Then 6 Shackleton AEW2 in 1981 after the Tories halved the fleet as a cost saving measure. Then 7 Sentry AEW1 from 1991, gradually reduced to 3 then 1 by continual failure to invest in updates and upgrades, until none from October 2021. Then no AEW aircraft at all until the Wedgetail AEW1 is introduced in the shape of 3 aircraft in 2024/7.
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Old 5th Feb 2023, 10:38
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Although I'm fully aware that the Nimrod AEW3 was never operational, I didn't realise that 11 aircraft were in the original order, only that 8 aircraft were in various stages of production when the whole project was rightfully binned. A colleague of mine had started training to instruct on the simulator at Waddington and had very uncomplimentary comments about the thing!

I recall doing some AAR with a Nimrod AEW3 - it didn't look easy. More absurdly, the Nimrod would have needed to maintain a high fuel level for the 'heat sink' cooling of its radar, implying frequent off-station time for AAR.

Failure to maintain / upgrade the Sentry was shameful.
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Old 5th Feb 2023, 12:36
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Originally Posted by Not_a_boffin
Well your first three words were accurate at least.
Actually I think that all of his words are accurate!

We have had the aircraft carrier in service since 2017, the F-35b in RAF squadron service in the UK since 2018, and since then, as we stand here in 2023 some 6 years later, we have had, what, 3 or 4 deployments of the carriers with aircraft embarked, usually in penny packets, and only once at a strength of 8 aircraft. There is still no sign of the infrastructure work at Marham to provide for the second operational squadron, let alone the second operational squadron.

So, seeing as the F-35B was supposed to replace the RAF Tornado GR force, it's Harriers, the RN's Sea Harriers/Harrier GR7 or 9's, and right now we have less than an operational squadrons worth of either aircraft or pilots, I reckon all his words are indeed accurate. The same goes for the other aircraft, the Merlin. A total of some 28 aircraft to provide ASW for the carriers and the Frigates and Destroyers and AEW for the carriers, and 25 Wildcat to provide for the remaining escorts.

Wonderful assets, but in woefully inadequate numbers, as some US Army General has recently referred too!
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Old 6th Feb 2023, 08:41
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Sir Humphrey:

Nearly 10% of MOD budget is spent on digital transformation, with mixed impact. PSL blog up on Defence digitisation, what gets cut to pay for digital progress and how ChatGPT and AI threatens the future of the UK military promotion process.

https://tinyurl.com/yx82e89z

Digitise or Die? the Defence Digitisation Dilemma
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Old 6th Feb 2023, 13:40
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Originally Posted by pr00ne
Actually I think that all of his words are accurate!

We have had the aircraft carrier in service since 2017, the F-35b in RAF squadron service in the UK since 2018, and since then, as we stand here in 2023 some 6 years later, we have had, what, 3 or 4 deployments of the carriers with aircraft embarked, usually in penny packets, and only once at a strength of 8 aircraft. There is still no sign of the infrastructure work at Marham to provide for the second operational squadron, let alone the second operational squadron.

So, seeing as the F-35B was supposed to replace the RAF Tornado GR force, it's Harriers, the RN's Sea Harriers/Harrier GR7 or 9's, and right now we have less than an operational squadrons worth of either aircraft or pilots, I reckon all his words are indeed accurate. The same goes for the other aircraft, the Merlin. A total of some 28 aircraft to provide ASW for the carriers and the Frigates and Destroyers and AEW for the carriers, and 25 Wildcat to provide for the remaining escorts.

Wonderful assets, but in woefully inadequate numbers, as some US Army General has recently referred too!
To add to this, we are now in the embarrassing position of having the reclassify our carriers as 'command and control' vessels or whatever to mask the fact they don't have enough of the jets envisioned to fly off them. I have never seen a US or French or any other nation's carriers put to sea without their jets onboard.
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Old 6th Feb 2023, 14:00
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So, Sky News this morning was reporting that the Treasury have got the Chancellor to agree that there will not be an extra penny for defence in the coming budget, and that the review refresh, that was due to be published on March 7th, is now postponed until after the budget because the submitted refresh simply confirmed everything said in the actual review and had nothing at all to say about the situation in Ukraine!!!!!

What sort of incompetent, inept, self serving idiots do we have as VSO's in the military today? I know that we have a Government that is THE most inept, incompetent, self serving, ineffective waste of space ever seen in Whitehall, but after the PM and the Chancellor saying in the last mini budget that they accepted the need for money for defence, only to have the clown's who did the review refresh say that all is OK and no change is needed?

I do hope that the Sky report is wrong, but....
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Old 6th Feb 2023, 14:56
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Originally Posted by pr00ne
AThere is still no sign of the infrastructure work at Marham to provide for the second operational squadron, let alone the second operational squadron.
CAS did say that 809 was still due to reform later this year (although MOD/RN was less definite in an FOI reply last year - https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/reque...ponse.pdf.html)

If course, with a shared pool of aircraft you don't need more jets for a second squadron - so maybe 617 gets them Mon/We/Fri one week and Tue/Thur the next.......
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Old 6th Feb 2023, 15:19
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Sounds like Augustine's Law..................
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Old 6th Feb 2023, 15:23
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Originally Posted by Davef68
CAS did say that 809 was still due to reform later this year (although MOD/RN was less definite in an FOI reply last year - https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/reque...ponse.pdf.html)

If course, with a shared pool of aircraft you don't need more jets for a second squadron - so maybe 617 gets them Mon/We/Fri one week and Tue/Thur the next.......
Indeed, it's the Emperor's new clothes. It's exactly the same with the plan to operate fewer Typhoons over the same number of squadrons, it rather undermines the meaning of the term 'squadron'.
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Old 6th Feb 2023, 16:18
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I read that in 1948, peacetime manpower level for the RAF of 245000 was considered appropriate, down from around 1100000 in 1945. This included 144 operational flying squadrons, each with 4 flights....

Did I hear from CAS interview that the RAF now has only 9 squadrons of fast jets, down from 36 at the end of GW1?

As for the number of RAF aerodromes still in existence......
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Old 6th Feb 2023, 16:49
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A 2023 version might be a bit smaller...

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Old 6th Feb 2023, 16:58
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Originally Posted by BEagle
So the RAF went from 8 x Nimrod AEW3 (on which £1Bn had been spent before it was binned) to 7 x E-3D, to be replaced by 5 x Wedgetails.....to now only 3?
But why would we need more, if they find anything we have **** all to send to as back up anyway.

We can seee you...
And what are you going to do about it?
Erm.... we can see you.. erm and we intend to launch............. a strongly worded email off to your ambassador.
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Old 6th Feb 2023, 17:07
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Originally Posted by NutLoose
But why would we need more, if they find anything we have **** all to send to as back up anyway.

We can seee you...
And what are you going to do about it?
Erm.... we can see you.. erm and we intend to launch............. a strongly worded email off to your ambassador.
Er, you are aware of the RAF Typhoon force aren’t you? 9 squadrons plus the 2 Lightning squadrons. And we are a member of that thing called NATO…

We certainly do not have enough, but you are taking it to ridiculous levels!
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