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Thread: USAF not F-35 thread

  1. #721
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    "the F15 has scored over 100 dogfight victories with zero loss"...

    Rrriiiggghttt

    Nic

  2. #722
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nicolas10 View Post
    "the F15 has scored over 100 dogfight victories with zero loss"...

    Rrriiiggghttt

    Nic
    Between USAF, RSAF, IAF, the F-15 has over 100 victories (not dogfights). There is zero credible evidence of any losses. What exactly are you sceptical of?

  3. #723
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    Quote Originally Posted by FBW View Post
    Between USAF, RSAF, IAF, the F-15 has over 100 victories (not dogfights). There is zero credible evidence of any losses. What exactly are you sceptical of?
    Of the dogfight part, obviously.

    Nic

  4. #724
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    The PCA/PEA could maybe be capable of attacking enemy aircraft both in the air when they attack with on board and off board AAMs and SAMs and right after they've landed with onboard and offboard weapons.

    When the enemy aircraft egress after their mission, the PCAs can follow them from behind with their radar using LPI modes and can update dozens of stealthy cruise missiles that follow them. As soon as they've landed the missile locks on them with their terminal seeker and destroys them.

    I doubt the F-35 would have enough range and stealth for that but maybe. If it takes off with EFT when the enemy planes are detected at long range and jettisons them a few hundreds kms after take off it could have enough range if it tries to spare its fuel.

  5. #725
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    Old radar types never die; they just phased array

  6. #726
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    The JSTARS would never be able to get close enough.

    I wonder if they couldn't expedite a delta tailless derivative of the F-35 to improve the stealth and range, with stock fuselage. Make it capable of only 4000 hours of flight hours to develop it faster. Minimal external payload if any to shorten dev time. The pilots would train mostly on the regular F-35s and in simulators. They could build like 50-100 of those and have them do SEAD, bomber escort and other things that require very high stealth with a2a capabilities.

    Would the gain in stealth be sufficient that's the question.

  7. #727
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hotshot View Post
    The JSTARS would never be able to get close enough.

    I wonder if they couldn't expedite a delta tailless derivative of the F-35 to improve the stealth and range, with stock fuselage. Make it capable of only 4000 hours of flight hours to develop it faster. Minimal external payload if any to shorten dev time. The pilots would train mostly on the regular F-35s and in simulators. They could build like 50-100 of those and have them do SEAD, bomber escort and other things that require very high stealth with a2a capabilities.

    Would the gain in stealth be sufficient that's the question.
    What makes you think their stealth isn't already sufficient, given that that is exactly what they are training to do with them?

  8. #728
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    JSTARS is not a penetrating platform nor is its replacement going to be. Not every platform needs to be able to penetrate in a first day of war scenario.
    Old radar types never die; they just phased array

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    Quote Originally Posted by hopsalot View Post
    What makes you think their stealth isn't already sufficient, given that that is exactly what they are training to do with them?
    The new generation of anti-stealth radars is going to proliferate quickly, that's why they want the PCA as soon as they can get it.

  10. #730
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    Tanker: they are talking about signature management (as the much vaunted SPECTRA), something that can be more easily adapted to the tanking mission.
    Last edited by TomcatViP; 6th March 2017 at 00:04.

  11. #731
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hotshot View Post


    The new generation of anti-stealth radars is going to proliferate quickly, that's why they want the PCA as soon as they can get it.
    Those "anti-stealth" radar are radars that function in a way that ignores aircraft shaping for the most part. (either very low frequency or "passive" radars, etc)

    That being the case, removing the F-35's tail and pretty much any other modification to its shape isn't going to make a great deal of difference.

    Of course those radars have pretty significant drawbacks themselves and really aren't drop-in replacements for existing radars. That is why you see all the same people who talk about "anti-stealth" radars working furiously to develop their own stealth aircraft. Even designs like the PAK DA, which won't fly until sometime well into the 2020s are being designed as stealth designs... which pretty well tells you Russia doesn't expect stealth to become obsolete anytime soon.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hopsalot View Post
    Those "anti-stealth" radar are radars that function in a way that ignores aircraft shaping for the most part. (either very low frequency or "passive" radars, etc)

    That being the case, removing the F-35's tail and pretty much any other modification to its shape isn't going to make a great deal of difference.

    Of course those radars have pretty significant drawbacks themselves and really aren't drop-in replacements for existing radars. That is why you see all the same people who talk about "anti-stealth" radars working furiously to develop their own stealth aircraft. Even designs like the PAK DA, which won't fly until sometime well into the 2020s are being designed as stealth designs... which pretty well tells you Russia doesn't expect stealth to become obsolete anytime soon.
    Some shaping features work in general (edge alignment, concealing compressor face, canopy coatings..), but many of them are frequency tuned, specifically for X-band (zig-zags, dimensions of edges, inner structure, RAM characteristics).. thus, an anti-stealth radar can be something as simple as a radar working in a different band.. logically, removing the F-35's tail or other modification to its shape is still going to make a great deal of difference because a non-existing tail is stealthy in any frequency band...

    if your assumptions were true, there would be zero need to develop a 6th Gen design.. they'd simply stick to the stealthy F-35 and replaced the bowels by something next gen..
    Last edited by MSphere; 6th March 2017 at 00:12.

  13. #733
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    Quote Originally Posted by MSphere View Post
    Some shaping features work in general (edge alignment, concealing compressor face, canopy coatings..), but many of them are frequency tuned, specifically for X-band (zig-zags, dimensions of edges, inner structure, RAM characteristics).. thus, an anti-stealth radar can be something as simple as a radar working in a different band.. logically, removing the F-35's tail or other modification to its shape is still going to make a great deal of difference because a non-existing tail is stealthy in any frequency band...
    Yes, shaping is for the most part targeting the X-band, but no removing the tail is not "stealthy in any frequency band." When you are talking about the sorts of very low frequency radars that are frequently advertised as having counter-stealth capabilities the entire aircraft effectively resonates. In theory a very large aircraft like a B-2 might be able to shaping effectively in those bands but it won't work for a fighter.


    if your assumptions were true, there would be zero need to develop a 6th Gen design.. they'd simply stick to the stealthy F-35 and replaced the bowels by something next gen..
    That makes an awful lot of assumptions... the first being that whatever the USAF decides on for its 6th Gen design is more or less a fighter as we know it today and the second that greater stealth would be the principal goal of the design.

    A 6th gen design might be quite large for instance... optimized for endurance and perhaps armed with laser weapons that make traditional maneuverability irrelevant. It will also likely take a system of systems approach, where it will act in concert with drones of various types, etc, potentially freeing it of the need to venture directly into the most heavily defended areas.

    This is why they take so long studying the problem before launching a program.

  14. #734
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    Quote Originally Posted by MSphere View Post
    zig-zags, dimensions of edges, inner structure, RAM characteristics
    Serrated edge canwork for a very wide bandwidth because it deal with surface wave return rather than specular return.
    LM CNT RAM has a massive bandwidth as well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by garryA View Post
    Serrated edge canwork for a very wide bandwidth because it deal with surface wave return rather than specular return.
    Yes and no.. the size of the zig-zags is specifically aimed at X-band wavelengths.. for different wavelengths it might work less effectively, in certain cases even make the whole radar return worse..

  16. #736
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    Quote Originally Posted by MSphere View Post
    Yes and no.. the size of the zig-zags is specifically aimed at X-band wavelengths.. for different wavelengths it might work less effectively, in certain cases even make the whole radar return worse..
    Not quite, the main reason that make very low frequency radar more efficient against stealth than higher frequency is : when the object size approach a certain ratio with the wavelength, most of target return be creeping wave return and surface discontinuities scattering rather than specular return. Serrated edges are designed to reduce negative effect of both.
    From X band down to L band, aircraft is still in optical region in respect to the radiowave so surfacewave matter little compared to specular return.
    Last edited by garryA; 6th March 2017 at 10:26.

  17. #737
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    Quote Originally Posted by MSphere View Post

    if your assumptions were true, there would be zero need to develop a 6th Gen design.. they'd simply stick to the stealthy F-35 and replaced the bowels by something next gen..
    The AOA for the PCA concept is ongoing. The one thing it isn't is a "sixth-gen" fighter. There has been several articles posted above in regards to the Penetrating Counter Air study.
    Last edited by FBW; 7th March 2017 at 15:32.

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    Air Force prepares directed-energy flight plan as AFSOC aims for flight test in FY-18


    ORLANDO, FL -- The Air Force will debut a directed-energy flight plan that sets out near-term action items to make fielding a laser weapon a reality by 2030, the Air Force Research Laboratory's top planner told Inside the Air Force last week.

    "This is a turning point for the Air Force in terms of directed energy,” Jack Blackhurst, who directs the AFRL strategic development planning and experimentation office, said March 2. "Up until now, we've basically been developing technology, testing technology, that sort of thing. . . . The Air Force is starting to get serious about how do we implement this technology, what are the [concepts of operations], what are the policies, what is the test infrastructure -- all those capabilities that you’re now moving from a technology to more of an acquisition flavor."

    Acting Air Force Secretary Lisa Disbrow has not yet signed the plan, which was requested by Lt. Gen. Mike Holmes, deputy chief of staff for strategic plans and requirements, and Lt. Gen. Arnold Bunch, the Air Force's top uniformed acquisition officer, according to Blackhurst.

    Disbrow did not say when she expects to sign the document when asked at a March 3 roundtable; the service did not immediately respond Monday to the same question.

    Blackhurst first discussed the plan with ITAF in December and elaborated in an interview at the Air Force Association's Air Warfare Symposium here.

    The flight plan considers the possibility of fielding a laser on both manned and unmanned aircraft, and will explore offensive and defensive applications -- though commanders are prioritizing defensive capabilities. Blackhurst said the Air Force would also look at ground-based applications.

    One action item expected in the plan will direct the Air Force to look at simulation capabilities and figure out how to bring directed energy into those environments.

    Technology demonstrations will continue over the next decade, Blackhurst said, but the Air Force will take a more serious look at possible common approaches to fielding lasers across commands, and how to pursue both lasers and the high-powered microwave, an AFRL-developed technology that can fry electronics when fired on a missile or, potentially, an unmanned aircraft.

    Once Disbrow signs the plan, Blackhurst intends to release an industry version and begin experiments using live, virtual and constructive simulation to flesh out how the technology could be used. Those experiments would not be aircraft-specific and could also cover gray areas in concepts of operation and policy. Blackhurst said he would present data gleaned from the experiments to Air Force leadership.

    "The idea here is to get the technology in the hands of the crews as soon as possible and let them try to use it, and to see whether it's feasible or not," Blackhurst said. "Just because we think we can use it doesn't necessarily mean we can."

    Air Force major commands including Air Combat Command, Air Mobility Command and Global Strike Command are in the process of developing requirements for how directed energy might be used on their aircraft, as well as the size and shape of its design. Blackhurst believes the most difficult project is the service's ongoing Self-Protect High-Energy Laser Demonstrator, which aims to put a laser pod on a fighter jet in the 2020s, because of the power and heat limitations.

    "While SHiELD is developing a pod concept, that pod could be used on other airplanes," Blackhurst said. "AMC and Global Strike Command are very interested in tracking that technology program because they can put pods on their planes and use it for their particular purposes. While the original technology demonstration is focused on a fighter application, the pod concept could be common."

    Air Mobility Command chief Gen. Carlton Everhart told reporters March 2 he is looking at possible uses for defensive directed energy as part of an ongoing study of high-value airborne assets. Mobility aircraft could field a laser in the next five to 10 years, Everhart said, noting that their size, weight and power capacity makes operating a laser more feasible than on smaller platforms.

    Air Force Special Operations Command chief Lt. Gen. Brad Webb said at a March 2 roundtable he hopes to flight-test a laser on the AC-130 for a proof of concept, ideally in fiscal year 2018.

    "Let’s take a low-kilowatt laser and prove that this can do beam director control accurately, and then we’ll take the next step of upping the kilowattage and go from there," Webb told reporters. "There's enough scar tissue that exists from programs in the past that we should show that the technology has improved and that it is capable of doing this."

    The C-130 is a good platform on which to test directed energy, he said, since it has enough room to house the power, cooling and other necessary components. Although AFSOC has enough funding to run the first steps of testing, Webb said they are still short for the entire program. He is optimistic a successful proof of concept will help bring in more money.

    An AFSOC spokesman did not immediately respond Monday to a question about how much money is needed or allocated for the flight test.

    After a 2016 Air Force Scientific Advisory Board study found AFSOC could field an offensive or defensive laser on the AC-130J, particularly in place of the left-side gun. Webb said last week that flight testing will see if the aircraft could handle flying with both the gun and a laser elsewhere.

    "There's multiple options that we gotta play out," he said. "That's precisely what we want to get to: Where does it make sense, what mix of weapons could it go with or should it go with?"

    Webb added there still needs to be a policy discussion on where and how a laser can be used.
    Old radar types never die; they just phased array

  19. #739
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    More on PCA:
    he USAF Scientific Advisory Board announced its fiscal year 2017 studies last week, which will focus on PCA, nuclear recapitalisation programmes and an assessment of the service’s test and evaluation facilities. In January, the service will begin an 18-month analysis of alternatives that will help determine the PCA platform by examining the ability to reach supersonic speeds in different configurations while maintaining a stealth signature and manoeuvrability. The advisory board’s work would complement that effort, examining documents from the USAF’s air superiority enterprise capability collaboration team (ECCT) and providing a technology roadmap to meet the PCA’s 2030 timeline
    That means thinking outside the box about what the definition of a fighter might be. In the classic sense, a fighter is a short-range jet capable of flying at 9Gs, with a single seat, he says. The ECCT is emphasising range and payload, but the platform may not require 9Gs. Unlike most fighters, the PCA will not be short-range, but what space the aircraft will fit into will depend on cost and how the platform fits into the USAF’s tanker fleet. The air force also wants a stealthy signature for survivability, but also a speedy, manoeuvrable platform, he says.
    http://www.scientificadvisoryboard.a...ing-counterair

  20. #740
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    It's all over again:


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    B-21 passes PDR


    The Air Force confirmed Wednesday it "recently" completed a preliminary design review of the largely classified B-21 bomber program.

    Air Force Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Stephen Wilson told the House Armed Services Committee during a March 8 hearing the Northrop Grumman-led program is "making real great progress" and he and the service chief and secretary receive regular updates.

    "We're pleased with where it's headed," he said, noting that the program is meeting cost and schedule goals.
    Old radar types never die; they just phased array

  22. #742
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    USAF TO POTENTIALLY GROW B-21 PROGRAM, SETS 100 BOMBER 'MINIMUM' REQUIREMENT



    The Air Force which once argued a need for a maximum of 100 new bombers has formally inverted its B-21 requirement, adopting 100 aircraft as the "minimum" number of new long-range strike bombers the service now needs -- a move that could set the stage to grow the $80 billion, Northrop Grumman-led project.

    The Air Force -- which launched the B-21 program in 2015 as the Pentagon wrestled with rounds of fiscal belt tightening stemming from the 2011 Budget Control Act -- appears now to be publicly reserving the right to make the case for more additional bombers as the Trump administration pledges to increase military spending.

    Gen. Stephen Wilson, Air Force vice chief of staff, suggested -- in written testimony prepared for a March 8 House Armed Services Committee hearing on nuclear deterrence requirements -- that the new bomber program could grow.

    "We require a fleet size that will ensure sustained dominance well into this century and intend to procure a minimum of 100 B-21s," according to Wilson's statement, which employed bold font for emphasis. "Procuring at least 100 B-21s will also reduce lifecycle ownership costs."

    Defense analysts said Wilson's statement was significant.

    "That's the first time I've heard that in public," said Mark Gunzinger, a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessment. "That does imply that 100 is a floor and that the future requirement might be more than 100."

    Similarly, Jeremiah Gertler, a military aviation expert at the Congressional Research Service, said: "That's the first time I've seen them say that out loud; that's first time I've seen them use 100 as a floor."

    An Air Force spokesman did not respond to a request for comment by press time (March 9).

    While building the case for a new long-range strike program, the Air Force argued it needed 80 to 100 new bombers. In January 2015, then-Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh said analysis indicated "roughly 80 to 100 as the target number for Long Range Strike Bomber."

    "We've stuck with that number for a very specific reason," Welsh said. "We believe that's the number it takes, after doing some very significant operational analysis, to do nuclear deterrence and to do a large scale air campaign."

    By October 2015, the service settled on an acquisition objective of 100 new bombers when awarding Northrop Grumman the contract to develop and build the aircraft. Then, over the last year, service officials have begun arguing that perhaps more than 100 aircraft could be required.

    Gunzinger, a former senior Pentagon official and retired B-52 pilot, said he believed the 100-aircraft acquisition target was driven more by budget considerations than analysis of the requirement based on future threats.

    President Trump has promised to increase U.S. military spending, directing the Pentagon to prepare a fiscal year 2018 budget proposal that would lift total spending by $17 billion compared to the FY-18 spending plan drafted last year by the Obama administration.

    The Air Force currently plans to replace 150 aging B-1 and B-52 bombers with 100 new B-21s. The service is conducting studies to review its B-21 requirement.

    Wilson told the House panel on March 8 that the B-21 program, a largely classified program, "recently" completed an important milestone, demonstrating the design for the new bomber is stable, expected to meet performance requirements and can be executed within the Pentagon's plan to buy 100 for $80 billion.

    The Air Force four-star general told Congress the Northrop Grumman-led program is "making really great progress."

    The critical design review, a key milestone of the engineering and manufacturing development phase of a program, typically marks the culmination of integrated system design in order to segue to system capability demonstration activities and validate supporting manufacturing processes.

    "We're pleased with where it's headed," Wilson said, claiming the program is meeting classified cost and schedule targets.
    Old radar types never die; they just phased array

  23. #743
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    F-22 "Update 6"? https://defensesystems.com/articles/2017/03/14/f22.aspx

    2019 the F-22 fleet will begin to get increment 3.2B. This article mentions a "software update 6", which includes new antennas. Have not seen anything regarding this, what antennas they are talking about (IFDL?, Link-16?, AN/ALR-94?). I doubt it would be for the AN/APG-77, as the T/R modules were updated.

    Update 5 seems to have focused on the AN/APG-77:
    Update 5 combines an OFP upgrade providing software driven radar enhancements, Ground Collision Avoidance System software, and the incorporation of limited AIM‑9X capabilities
    http://www.dote.osd.mil/pub/reports/...f/2016f22a.pdf

    This has not been mentioned in the F-22 incremental roadmap, SAR, or DOT&E documents. Anyone have some insight? B-I-O?

  24. #744
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    Quote Originally Posted by FBW View Post
    F-22 "Update 6"? https://defensesystems.com/articles/2017/03/14/f22.aspx

    Anyone have some insight? B-I-O?
    Cryptographic modernization (software portion). The hardware part is Link-16 transmit capability, which is also currently expected to be completed by 2020/21. This will be the last tweak they do before the OMS update.
    Last edited by bring_it_on; 16th March 2017 at 16:19.
    Old radar types never die; they just phased array

  25. #745
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    Air Force seeks immediate, sharp FY-17 funding increase for sixth-generation fighter


    The Air Force is seeking an immediate and dramatic increase in funding for its Next-Generation Air Dominance program, suggesting plans for a new penetrating counterair capability -- also referred to as a sixth-generation fighter -- are poised to accelerate if Congress can provide an additional $147 million in fiscal year 2017 above the $20 million the service originally requested.

    The service is seeking the new funds to support work on a follow-on to the F-22A Raptor as part of the Pentagon's amended FY-17 budget request -- the Trump administration's gambit to add $30 billion to military coffers, a proposal that faces a number of potential political roadblocks in Congress.

    Still, the Air Force -- in budget documents supporting the additional FY-17 spending proposal -- disclosed a previously unknown need for $167.5 million for the Next Generation Air Dominance project, a 735 percent increase compared to the service's original $20.5 million request for the project submitted to Congress in February 2016.

    With the exception of an unnamed, classified project, the additional funding for Next-Generation Air Dominance is the single-largest increase in the research and development accounts in the proposed $30 billion hike in FY-17 military spending.

    At press time, an Air Force spokesman did not respond to a request for an explanation for the increased spending.

    The Air Force planned in FY-17 for a major milestone review for the Next-Generation Air Dominance project -- a materiel development decision -- during which the service would to seek permission to proceed with an analysis of alternatives. The plan was to get an MDD decision during the second quarter of FY-17, between January and March.

    In lieu of traditional weapon system acquisition milestones, the Air Force schedule -- beginning in FY-17 -- calls for an annual presentation of "strategic planning choices."

    As part of the preparation for the material solutions analysis phase of the project, the Air Force planned to identify "candidate technologies early in the analysis process," the service told Congress last year.

    The Air Force's original FY-17 budget request forecast a need for $12.8 million in both FY-18 and FY-19. That forecast now appears to be overcome by events.

    Mark Gunzinger, a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessment, said the change in the funding profile implies the Air Force is seeking money for more than just the AOA, perhaps looking to finance some technology development in an effort to speed things along.

    "Some initial money that might help accelerate the penetrating counterair effort," Gunzinger said. "If that is their intent, I would applaud them."

    The Air Force has been building the case to launch a new air dominance capability for years, following approval in 2011 by the Pentagon's top brass of a requirement for a follow-on capability to the F-22A.

    "Sir, we started that long ago," Maj. Gen. Jerry Harris, deputy chief of staff for strategic plans, programs, and requirements, told the House Armed Services Committee Feb. 16 when asked when the service should start working on a sixth-generation fighter.

    Last year, the Air Force published a new blueprint for how it plans to ensure air superiority that called for a "penetrating counterair capability" -- which service officials said would be the focus of the Next-Generation Air Dominance analysis of alternatives. As part of the AOA, the service is expected to explore platform, sensor and weapon combinations that optimize operational range, payload, survivability and affordability, including experimentation on concepts like arsenal planes, loyal wingmen and others.

    That blueprint concluded the service "must reject thinking focused on 'next-generation' platforms" because such focus can create "a desire to push technology limits with the confines of a formal program." Such objectives drive risk and can lead to cost growth and schedule delays.

    As an alternative, the document advocates leveraging experimentation and prototyping "to more rapidly infuse advanced technologies into the force," an acquisition approach Deputy Defense Secretary Bob Work has encouraged as part of his campaign to orchestrate a hunt for a so-called Third Offset Strategy that would identify new capabilities to bolster conventional deterrence.
    Old radar types never die; they just phased array

  26. #746
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    "The AIRST was deleted from the F-22 avionic suite during development as a cost saving measure."

    hmm

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    Quote Originally Posted by KGB View Post
    "The AIRST was deleted from the F-22 avionic suite during development as a cost saving measure."

    hmm
    Yes AIRST and Cheek arrays were both clipped right before production decisions were made. Cheek arrays are being looked at as the next major hardware insertion following the work currently funded but AIRST is highly unlikely, although Sweetman in his extremely detailed article on the F-22 back in the late 1990s did say that there is space, power and cooling provided although we don't know how much of that margin is still surplus.
    Old radar types never die; they just phased array

  28. #748
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    Quote Originally Posted by bring_it_on View Post
    Yes AIRST and Cheek arrays were both clipped right before production decisions were made. Cheek arrays are being looked at as the next major hardware insertion following the work currently funded but AIRST is highly unlikely, although Sweetman in his extremely detailed article on the F-22 back in the late 1990s did say that there is space, power and cooling provided although we don't know how much of that margin is still surplus.
    Most people claim that it didn't need it and it wasn't worth the potential stealth compromise. Neither of which are true apparently.

  29. #749
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    Quote Originally Posted by KGB View Post
    Most people claim that it didn't need it and it wasn't worth the potential stealth compromise. Neither of which are true apparently.
    The side arrays are still quite unnecessary, mostly useful for SAR but f-22 isn't really A2G oriented. So it is easy to understand why they cut it to reduce cost
    The IRST would be a good add on with the amount of stealth platform in the future
    Last edited by garryA; 17th March 2017 at 03:50.

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    Dynetics advances to Phase II of DARPA's Gremlins program


    Dynetics, Inc. has been awarded a contract for Phase 2 of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA)’s Gremlins program, an innovative technology program that seeks to enable aircraft to launch volleys of low-cost reusable unmanned aerial systems (UAS) and safely and reliably retrieve them in mid-air. The Gremlins architecture is designed to enable other technologies such as advanced payloads and autonomous battle management for swarming systems.Beginning in March 2017, Phase 2 is a planned 12-month effort worth up to $21 million in which Dynetics seeks to develop a detailed system design and mature technologies that are critical to achieving Gremlins’ challenging goals.

    Mark Miller, Dynetics’ Gremlins program manager, said, “We are very pleased and excited that DARPA selected our Gremlins design. This opportunity expands previous work we have performed developing and rapidly fielding air-launched systems and leverages our creativity and agility. Our goal is to not only successfully complete the Gremlins demonstration for DARPA but to also help eventually transition this capability in some form to the warfighter.”

    Dynetics has assembled a team of technology providers including Kratos Defense & Security Solutions, Inc., Sierra Nevada Corporation, Applied Systems Engineering, Inc., Williams International, Systima Technologies, Inc., Airborne Systems, Moog Inc. and International Air Response.

    “Our team is made up of multiple divisions within our company providing a diverse set of expertise, and our subcontractors represent the best in their class for their assigned roles. We understand this important challenge is essential for our nation’s defense capability. Successful execution of Gremlins would lay the groundwork for the future use of swarming, recoverable systems for multiple missions,” said Tim Keeter, Dynetics deputy program manager and chief engineer for Gremlins.

    During Phase 1, Dynetics successfully designed flight demonstration concepts for launch and recovery techniques, low-cost limited airframe designs and high-fidelity analysis, precision digital flight control, relative navigation and station keeping. The company was one of four competing companies awarded a contract in Phase 1.

    In Phase 2, the focus is on technology maturation. Phase 3 would aim to finalize the design and ultimately demonstrate the ability to launch Gremlins air vehicles and then safely recover them onto a C-130 aircraft. Based on Phase 2 results, DARPA plans to award Phase 3 in early 2018.
    Old radar types never die; they just phased array

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