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PACAF Calls for E-7s to Replace E-3 AWACS

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PACAF Calls for E-7s to Replace E-3 AWACS

Old 25th Oct 2021, 08:45
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Whimsical thought - if the USAF does buy the Wedgetail, will they call it the E-7 or the E-12? E-7 was never used,but was intended to be used on what became the EC-18 range aircraft
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Old 14th Nov 2021, 00:43
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Boeing is saying they are expecting an E-7 order early next year

Boeing executive says USAF will order E-7A next year ? Alert 5
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Old 15th Nov 2021, 10:03
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It will be interesting to see how many and any changes the USAF requires- a large order could be the impetus to use the latest 737 airframe or even something else. A more modest order <10 with no changes would indicate it being just a stop gap to bridge between the E3 and Integrated Space based systems originally planned to replace the E3. Currently the USAF operates around 10 E3Cs out of the original 34 E3As the remaining 22 are E3Bs ; 2 E3s have been lost or written off. . Given the recent investment its logical that the E3Cs will be retained and some or all of the E3Bs replaced by the E7A. Good news for the Commonwealth of Australia (RAAF) as they probably receive some sort of license fee on the improvements they funded on their E7s after they were fist delivered. The flight of 3 RAF E7s will be to the same standard. (I cannot call it a squadron!!!).
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Old 15th Nov 2021, 23:32
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They were talking of gap filling. How many they consider needing, will be determined. Also they may add tech to it. UK and AU may get in on their update. An AUKUS win for everyone.
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Old 16th Nov 2021, 01:01
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Originally Posted by golder
Also they may add tech to it. UK and AU may get in on their update. An AUKUS win for everyone.
That would be nice, going forward together with common systems. (And I fear politics would of course interfere with a smooth implementation, but maybe this time it won't?)
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Old 16th Nov 2021, 13:32
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Could economies of scale mean the UK could piggy back a USAF order and afford the other two after all?
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Old 9th Feb 2022, 15:46
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https://www.defensenews.com/air/2022...ement-in-2023/

Air Force eyes contract for AWACS replacement in 2023

WASHINGTON — The Air Force said this week a contract to buy a replacement for the aging E-3G Sentry — also known as the AWACS, or Airborne Warning and Control System aircraft — could come in fiscal 2023.

According to a request for information released Tuesday, the service wants to know within 30 days how a potential contractor would deliver at least two prototype aircraft to replace the AWACS, including ground support and training systems, within five years of an expected 2023 award.

The Air Force noted the RFI was issued for its own planning purposes and is not a promise to issue a request for proposals in the future. But it provides the fullest picture yet of the time frame and requirements the service may be eying for the E-3′s replacement.…..

The Air Force wants companies responding to the RFI to explain how their proposed replacement aircrafts would deliver multiple capabilities the AWACS now provides. Those capabilities should include an advanced Airborne Moving Target Indication radar that could maintain a 360-degree surveillance picture while homing in on targets and perform real-time data processing of targets, the RFI said.

The Air Force also wants to know how a replacement aircraft would tell the difference between friendly and enemy forces, conduct radar-based maritime surveillance, and conduct simultaneously at least six battle management command and control missions — including air traffic control, close air support, suppression of enemy air defenses, air refueling, and combat search and rescue….
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Old 27th Apr 2022, 07:10
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https://www.defensenews.com/air/2022...replace-awacs/

It’s the Wedgetail: Air Force to buy E-7 to replace AWACS

WASHINGTON — The Air Force announced Tuesday it will replace part of the E-3 Sentry, or Airborne Warning and Control System, fleet with Boeing E-7 Wedgetails.

In a release, the service said the decision to go with the Wedgetail was based on market research and that it is “the only platform” that could meet all of the Defense Department’s requirements for tactical battle management, command and control, and target tracking in time to replace the aging E-3, which dates back to the 1970s.

The Air Force plans to award a contract to Boeing in fiscal 2023 for the Wedgetail, which was developed by Australia for its air force.

The service’s proposed 2023 budget calls for retiring 15 E-3s, or about half the fleet, from Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma. It would provide $227 million in research, development, test and evaluation funds for the replacement. The first rapid prototype E-7 would be delivered in fiscal 2027.

The Air Force said it plans to fund a second rapid prototype aircraft in fiscal 2024 and aims to make a production decision the following year on fielding more Wedgetails. The release did not say how many Wedgetails the Air Force might eventually buy.….
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Old 27th Apr 2022, 14:37
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Originally Posted by ORAC
https://www.defensenews.com/air/2022...replace-awacs/

It’s the Wedgetail: Air Force to buy E-7 to replace AWACS

WASHINGTON — The Air Force announced Tuesday it will replace part of the E-3 Sentry, or Airborne Warning and Control System, fleet with Boeing E-7 Wedgetails.

In a release, the service said the decision to go with the Wedgetail was based on market research and that it is “the only platform” that could meet all of the Defense Department’s requirements for tactical battle management, command and control, and target tracking in time to replace the aging E-3, which dates back to the 1970s.

The Air Force plans to award a contract to Boeing in fiscal 2023 for the Wedgetail, which was developed by Australia for its air force.

The service’s proposed 2023 budget calls for retiring 15 E-3s, or about half the fleet, from Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma. It would provide $227 million in research, development, test and evaluation funds for the replacement. The first rapid prototype E-7 would be delivered in fiscal 2027.

The Air Force said it plans to fund a second rapid prototype aircraft in fiscal 2024 and aims to make a production decision the following year on fielding more Wedgetails. The release did not say how many Wedgetails the Air Force might eventually buy.….
Makes sense as it is the only AEW & C modern platform out there at moment unless someone is going to create a new Off the shelf platform,

Scramble website has a CGI


cheers
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Old 28th Apr 2022, 01:37
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Not even slightly rapid prototype

Originally Posted by ORAC

The service’s proposed 2023 budget ... would provide $227 million in research, development, test and evaluation funds for the replacement. The first rapid prototype E-7 would be delivered in fiscal 2027.
The Air Force said it plans to fund a second rapid prototype aircraft in fiscal 2024
So it's going to take Boeing and the USAF four years to complete the first 'rapid prototype' of an type that's based on an in-production airframe (P-8A) and is currently in service with a 5-eyes partner?

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Old 28th Apr 2022, 01:43
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Originally Posted by kiwi grey
So it's going to take Boeing and the USAF four years to complete the first 'rapid prototype' of an type that's based on an in-production airframe (P-8A) and is currently in service with a 5-eyes partner?
You can bet big money that the USAF isn't getting the same configuration Wedgetail that Australia got. It's part of the USAF DNA - they gold plate everything, plus the basic electronics of the Wedgetail are almost two decades old - that's ancient in the electronics world - so I suspect serious updating of the electronics suite is going on.
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Old 28th Apr 2022, 03:08
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One can only hope that they spend money to try to improve it. It will benefit the UK and AU (AUKUS) in updates.
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Old 28th Apr 2022, 07:29
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"You can bet big money that the USAF isn't getting the same configuration Wedgetail that Australia got. It's part of the USAF DNA - they gold plate everything, plus the basic electronics of the Wedgetail are almost two decades old - that's ancient in the electronics world - so I suspect serious updating of the electronics suite is going on."

And here comes another vast cost overrun and late in service debacle.................. ​​​​​​​
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Old 28th Apr 2022, 08:20
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I would hope that the USAF has learned valuable lessons after the utter absurdity of the KC-46A debacle....
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Old 28th Apr 2022, 09:03
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Years ago Bill Gunston wrote "history is littered with cases of aircraft that were only supposed to have a few modifications but turned out to cost more than a clean sheet design"

he was talking about the A3D/B-66 disaster (he exempted the USN/USAF Phantom II and the Seafire) but you have to say it's a sad chronicle all in all

The FIRST priority should be introducing a standard, working aircraft (even if you have to eat Vegemite) - worry about mods later - but of course there isn't much in that for either the manufacturers or the Programme Officers
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Old 28th Apr 2022, 09:59
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If the electronics are c. 20 years old it will probably be impossible to buy any identical additional systems.

Whilst the airframes should not take long to deliver, depending on the state/queue length of the production lines involved, the USAF has to set up a complete logistic support arrangement for the Wedgetail, or ask UK and/or AUS to expand theirs, before they can bring the thing into service. The proposed timescale looks reasonably difficult for that.

That said, it does look like another opportunity for a programme Charlie Foxtrot. One would hope Boeing, DoD and USAF will have some top-notch folk in the management team, and that the pork barrel will be well hidden.

N
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Old 28th Apr 2022, 10:06
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Originally Posted by BEagle
I would hope that the USAF has learned valuable lessons after the utter absurdity of the KC-46A debacle....
The procurement process seems a bit different. Rather than a long drawn out competition, it seems to be "We'll have one of those..."
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Old 28th Apr 2022, 10:33
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Originally Posted by kiwi grey
So it's going to take Boeing and the USAF four years to complete the first 'rapid prototype' of an type that's based on an in-production airframe (P-8A) and is currently in service with a 5-eyes partner?
Slightly different airframe (700 v 800) and iirc the 700ER isn't in series production at the moment (albeit they did do one for the RAF
) - the timescale for the RAF from order to delivery of the first is 4 years - the conversion from 737 to E-7 takes about 2 years, so if they are going for anew build test airframe, they'll have to wait for the production slot too.
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Old 28th Apr 2022, 10:46
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Originally Posted by kiwi grey
So it's going to take Boeing and the USAF four years to complete the first 'rapid prototype' of an type that's based on an in-production airframe (P-8A) and is currently in service with a 5-eyes partner?
The E-7A is not built on the same platform as the P-8A which is off the B737-800 and the E-7A is off the B737-700....
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Old 28th Apr 2022, 10:52
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Originally Posted by Asturias56
Years ago Bill Gunston wrote "history is littered with cases of aircraft that were only supposed to have a few modifications but turned out to cost more than a clean sheet design"

he was talking about the A3D/B-66 disaster (he exempted the USN/USAF Phantom II and the Seafire) but you have to say it's a sad chronicle all in all

The FIRST priority should be introducing a standard, working aircraft (even if you have to eat Vegemite) - worry about mods later - but of course there isn't much in that for either the manufacturers or the Programme Officers
They will have to change the galley for $15 million. It currently has a meat pie warmer and as you said, are also doing toasted cheese and vegemite sandwiches.
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