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Thread: USAF not F-35 thread

  1. #31
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    Still early days on how the aircraft would be deployed in 2025 let alone 2030. The USAF absolutely expects the F-22 and F-35 to be teamed up for various missions in the 2020's and beyond. The F-15C will play a role and there would be missions where it would have to perform with either the F-22, F-35 or both but the plan is to embed as many 5th generation F-22A's and F-35A's as possible keeping in mind that the F-35A is going to be introduced at a maximum rate of 80 per year. You aren't going to get 1763 odd until the late 2030's.
    Last edited by bring_it_on; 27th March 2015 at 21:30.
    Old radar types never die; they just phased array

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    Quote Originally Posted by obligatory View Post
    lasers consume too much power to install as a retrofit,
    but MALD, GaN AESA, & IRST can be expected 2030
    Surface is important when you start thinking about Laser. The 15 is a flying tennis court in this regards. it also hve two big engines that, updated, will generate plenty of elec.

    It is then a good candidate for a futur application.

    We hve alrdy discussed the matter, but a big bulky plane is easier to upgrade than a nimble one (think at the ever lasting Phantom).
    Last edited by TomcatViP; 27th March 2015 at 21:50.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vnomad View Post
    1. If the fighter and drone operate in tandem, than the fighter also gets limited to subsonic speeds. What if the formation gets intercepted by enemy aircraft? The fighters will be able to scatter, withdraw or engage. The drones will be hobbled with by their limited speed and agility. Especially considering that the drone will be at a certain orientation to the fighter while the enemy attacks can come from any aspect.
    It's a Drone, not a remote control plane. You can program them with emergency procedures if contact is broken, rendez vous at some point or whatever + you can switch to satcom if LOS is broken.

    2. The need to maintain line-of-sight limits the pair's capability. The drone will always be 'leashed' to the fighter, making penetrative strikes and long range attack difficult to pull off given that the Rafale will still be detectable and the LOS has limited range and the fighter will need to remain on station throughout.
    Deep penetration strikes will be made with preplanned actions. No need for constant LOS with a supporting fighter then. Besides, what do you think SATCOM is for? Liason would be more useful in seek & destroy type scenario, like SCUD search in GWI or looking for mobile ADS.

    Point is, the arrangement will rob the fighter pilot of the flexibility necessary for his job.
    Nope.

  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vnomad View Post
    Not necessarily.
    True, it might happen, might not.

    Quote Originally Posted by Vnomad View Post
    The Eurofigher will be nearing retirement so probably won't field 2040s tech (an awkward phrase).
    Dont bet on it. The first NATO "fighter" to receive an HMD (the good old Marconi Striker) coupled with the latest 180 generation AAM was called... the Jaguar, it also had an LDP and datalink, that was done years before it got canned, the first non American aircraft equiped with a Link 16 was called the Sea Harrier FA2, before it got axed, the Tornado FMK3 was upgraded right untill it got axed, the 16 "diamond standard" fleet RAF GR4 are receiving ugrades now, etc, etc... The RAF upgrades their aircrafts right untill it scraps them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Vnomad View Post
    Will we field technology capable of entirely eroding RCS in that time-frame? Most firms developing fighter aircraft in the world are probably hoping that's not the case (except perhaps for Saab). Maybe they'd develop some sort of strap-on gadget (an even more awkward phrase) nullifying stealth post-2030?
    For the "strap on" kind of arguments try JSR not me.
    Now is there any chances that sensor evolution and computing power erode a great big chunk of the tactical advantage that a low RCS gives to the Raptor versus an older generation of aircrafts, more than THIRTY years after it was received by USAF Sqns? Is it possible or not? If you say "its not possible", i have a wonderfull Northrop Gruman video featuring F-35s stating that agility is a bit irrelevant, something that the General Dynamics 1990 PR chaps would surely disagree.
    On top of that we have this Joint Strike Fighter Tier 1 partner with an anti stealth program (reforger) led by this company called British Aerosomething wich happens to build a great big chunk of DAVE, and that partner will field something like five sqns of Typhoonsomething, and offcourse that they wont use these three sqns of "Davesomething" to model an answer to the latest Russian and Chinese low RCS aircrafts.
    And the fact that the RAF was the first NATO air force to field IR seekers linked through L16 across its fleet had nothing to do with their experience with the F-117 and the Raptor and the fact that the US Navy and the USAF agressor units went right after them also doesnt say anything about exercises with the USAF Raptor fleet.
    I honestly think that if the USAF didnt believe that the RCS advantage enjoyed by the likes of the Raptor or the JSF wouldnt be seriously compromised by the mid thirties, they wouldnt be looking for a new fighter by that timeframe.

    Cheers
    Last edited by Sintra; 27th March 2015 at 22:47.

  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sintra View Post
    True, it might happen, might not.



    Dont bet on it. The first NATO "fighter" to receive an HMD (the good old Marconi Striker) coupled with the latest 180 generation AAM was called... the Jaguar, it also had an LDP and datalink, that was done years before it got canned, the first non American aircraft equiped with a Link 16 was called the Sea Harrier FA2, before it got axed, the Tornado FMK3 was upgraded right untill it got axed, the 16 "diamond standard" fleet RAF GR4 are receiving ugrades now, etc, etc... The RAF upgrades their aircrafts right untill it scraps them.



    For the "strap on" kind of arguments try JSR not me.
    Now is there any chances that sensor evolution and computing power erode a great big chunk of the tactical advantage that a low RCS gives to the Raptor versus an older generation of aircrafts, more than THIRTY years after it was received by USAF Sqns? Is it possible or not? If you say "its not possible", i have a wonderfull Northrop Gruman video featuring F-35s stating that agility is a bit irrelevant, something that the General Dynamics 1990 PR chaps would surely disagree.
    On top of that we have this Joint Strike Fighter Tier 1 partner with an anti stealth program (reforger) led by this company called British Aerosomething wich happens to build a great big chunk of DAVE, and that partner will field something like five sqns of Typhoonsomething, and offcourse that they wont use these three sqns of "Davesomething" to model an answer to the latest Russian and Chinese low RCS aircrafts.
    And the fact that the RAF was the first NATO air force to field IR seekers linked through L16 across its fleet had nothing to do with their experience with the F-117 and the Raptor and the fact that the US Navy and the USAF agressor units went right after them also doesnt say anything about exercises with the USAF Raptor fleet.
    I honestly think that if the USAF didnt believe that the RCS advantage enjoyed by the likes of the Raptor or the JSF wouldnt be seriously compromised by the mid thirties, they wouldnt be looking for a new fighter by that timeframe.

    Cheers
    Time to start looking at RCS reduction as a starting point for an aircraft rather than a gimmick or an advantage that will prove fleeting. Sure, technology will (and has) eroded the idea that stealth alone is a strength unto itself. The USAF made this assertion with the advent of the F-22 and the retirement of the F-117, yet the idea that somehow "stealth" is the singular power of the maligned "fifth generation" is in signal reduction remains.

    The simple fact is: the F-22 is not (arguably) the best air superiority fighter because it is stealthy, or maneuverable, or because can super cruise. It is dominant because it has: excellent radar, AN/ALR-94 which is the single most expensive and classified piece of equipment on the aircraft (the abilities of which are not really open to discuss due to the lack of open source references, nor does the USAF tout it unlike SPECTRA on the Rafale because the F-22 is not an exportable product) but the most important factor the pilots have discussed are the advantages provided by the sensors and sensor fusion.

    Sensor fusion has become a buzz word in the industry but truthfully it is misused nearly as often as stealth. There simple is no level of sensor fusion on legacy aircraft comparable to the F-22, F-35 despite the claims of Sweetman and others. Legacy fighters can mimic sensor fusion by blending the data from different sensors into the MFD and HMD of legacy aircraft. The difference?
    1. They are federated systems, you can plug and play the Elbit SAPIR, or the OSF and the DDM NG on the Rafale, they are not all tied into the ICP as the sensors are in the F-22 or the F-35. These are not opinions, it is a fact.
    2. federated sensors have some advantages such as: the ability to upgrade quickly, easier integration onto the airframe, agility in upgrade paths not tied to software/hardware obsolescence.
    3. the drawbacks are: to the pilot the sensor information "appears" fused i.e.. they are presented with the data from the array of sensors on the MFD or HMD, but there was no processing in the ICP. The threat database does not cross reference the radar with the IRST and the onboard IDAS as in so called "fifth generation" fighters.
    4. There simply is not substitute for having the actionable information presented to the pilot from:

    a. all the onboard sensors categorizing and labeling the threat aircraft using all of the sensors available and telling the pilot: what they are facing, where the wingmen are, what the others in the formation are seeing,
    b. labeling and tracking of targets even as they pass out of visual, radar FOV
    c. a "shoot" list
    d. how likely they are to be detected and what actions to take to avoid detection (active/passive)
    e. automatically deploying/taking countermeasures and actions to avoid threats. If you doubt that the F-22 and F-35 can do this than you have not read the details released.



    All aircraft can do some of the above, some can mimic all. The simple fact is that there is no substitute for tying all sensors and defensive countermeasures into the ICP of the aircraft. Whether the lack of flexibility and difficulty of upgrade paths and software difficulties are worth the level of integration is a worthwhile discussion. Is, for example, the Gripen NG strategy of state of the art plug and play sensors integrated at the pilot level a cost effective way of achieving most of the advantages of sensor fusion? Is it advantageous to avoid the difficulty and expense of a project like the F-35 software worth it if it provides 70, 80, 90% of the capability of sensor fusion provided by ICP integration of sensors in the F-22/F-35? I don't know.
    Last edited by FBW; 28th March 2015 at 00:33.

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sintra View Post
    Dont bet on it. The first NATO "fighter" to receive an HMD (the good old Marconi Striker) coupled with the latest 180 generation AAM was called... the Jaguar, it also had an LDP and datalink, that was done years before it got canned, the first non American aircraft equiped with a Link 16 was called the Sea Harrier FA2, before it got axed, the Tornado FMK3 was upgraded right untill it got axed, the 16 "diamond standard" fleet RAF GR4 are receiving ugrades now, etc, etc... The RAF upgrades their aircrafts right untill it scraps them.
    The Tornado F3 received only minor upgrades over the last decade of its service and was retired on schedule AFAIK. The Jaguar and Harrier on the other hand were both retired ahead of schedule so upgrading them (or retiring them depending on your perspective) was not as per plan, it was a result of mismanagement, plain and simple. The equivalent here would be to upgrade the Eurofighter fleet in 2025 and retire it in 2030. A major upgrade in 2035 on the other hand is highly unlikely.

    I honestly think that if the USAF didnt believe that the RCS advantage enjoyed by the likes of the Raptor or the JSF wouldnt be seriously compromised by the mid thirties, they wouldnt be looking for a new fighter by that timeframe.
    Actually what I'm suggesting is that with a limited amount of residual life remaining, the Eurofighter won't receive any significant upgrades in the mid thirties. Especially if you consider that Eurofighter retirement technically begins just next year.
    Last edited by Vnomad; 28th March 2015 at 02:03.

  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nicolas10 View Post
    It's a Drone, not a remote control plane. You can program them with emergency procedures if contact is broken, rendez vous at some point or whatever + you can switch to satcom if LOS is broken.
    Except that what I'm describing isn't an emergency, its something you can expect to happen on a very regular basis unless we're talking about a low threat conflict. Control oversight by the fighter WSO should not be taken for granted in any typical mission.

    Deep penetration strikes will be made with preplanned actions. No need for constant LOS with a supporting fighter then. Besides, what do you think SATCOM is for? Liason would be more useful in seek & destroy type scenario, like SCUD search in GWI or looking for mobile ADS.
    Well clearly we're discussing different things. You're looking at a newer Iraq or Libya type intervention while I'm thinking more on the lines of Russia or China. Meaning I expect plentiful long range radars (and SAMs) on ground, plentiful interceptors in the air (backed by AWACS and including LO fighters), unreliable SATCOM with satellite subject to jamming (if not outright shootdowns) and limited time and intelligence for pre-planning missions. Some of that would you'd face even against a mid-tier threat like an Iran rearmed with Russian equipment. Or to pick a better trained (albeit more unlikely) foe, a Pakistan with the latest generation of Chinese weaponry.

  8. #38
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    War with China or Russia would be reckless. Not happening. Enuff said.
    Go Huskers!

  9. #39
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    Things will even considerably change in 5-10 years or so as China and Russia are picking up the paste, and considerably so!
    Simply put, Its all going to depend on what and how many China and Russia decides to go for.

    Thinks about it, if the Soviet Union did not collapse, there would be at least 500 F-22s now with major upgrades already in place. Current F-22 is a shadow of what it was meant to be. Why, because there would be hunderds of Su-35/37s out there, and possibly thousands including Chinese AF licence builts, plus Soviet 5th generation fighter well in service by now.

    So things are changing now fast enough (almost) again, right?!

    on a slightly different angle..

    I also am thinking that stealth as we know it might seize to exist as a dependable protection for an aircraft in the next 10 years, 15 TOPS! What happens then? !
    The reality of F22 becoming absolete as an old dog, while new Pak-Fa ends up being much more adaptable and suitable to modern warfare. F-35 becoming insufficient while expensive and demanding in obsolete way to maintain, makes me think that future modernization and overhauls of F-16, F15s, and Superhornets might extend their life quite a bit past 2025.

    More Likely a 6th generation fighter bomber will be an answer to both issues sooner than we think, and with a faster prototype to actual service entry time than what we've seen in the past 25 years! This timing could be the winning bid!
    Last edited by Wanderlei; 29th March 2015 at 05:11.

  10. #40
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    No matter the pace, stealth will always be relevant. It's been pointed out here ad naseum that still is just a facet in the electromatic signals intelligence game. It will only become more relevant, not less. Unfortunately people don't read the intelligent posts in the forum and would rather participate in low brow battles of wit.
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  11. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by MadRat View Post
    War with China or Russia would be reckless. Not happening. Enuff said.
    Similar sentiments were voiced in the wake of the First World War. There are relatively few absolutes in the world. War with Russia or China is highly unlikely, but needs to be prepared for nevertheless, as means to prevent it if nothing else. China and Russia certainly take the possibility of war with a first rate power seriously enough to spend billions on their military modernization programs.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wanderlei View Post
    I also am thinking that stealth as we know it might seize to exist as a dependable protection for an aircraft in the next 10 years, 15 TOPS! What happens then?
    The definitive variants of the PAK FA, J-20 & J-31 will be FOCing in about 10 years time. And in 15 years, they'll be new arrivals coming in from Japan followed by Korea, India and Turkey. Expecting stealth to be obsolete may end up being a lot similar to arguing that a gun was obsolete back in the 60s.

  13. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by bring_it_on View Post
    That some F-15C's are going to be kept till 18,000 airframe hours was something that has been known for a while. How you stretch that in terms of times depends upon your utilization.
    Thanks, now I am going to be terrified every time I see the Oregon Air National Guard F-15s fly overhead.
    http://img818.imageshack.us/img818/9098/rsz11rsz3807.jpg

  14. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by SpudmanWP View Post
    Try actually reading and understanding a post before commenting.

    There was nothing nationalistic in what I said. All I said was that the F-15C/D can stay in service because the F-15C/D will not have to be the top fighter for the US throughout it's whole lifetime.

    Neither the Eurofighter nor Rafale have a replacement on the drawing boards at this time. No, UCAVs are not it either. They are barely in their infancy in an A2G role and even assuming they can compete in an A2A role in the next 10-15 years is wishful thinking.
    Could you develop please? It would be quite interesting...

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    Time to start looking at RCS reduction as a starting point for an aircraft rather than a gimmick or an advantage that will prove fleeting. Sure, technology will (and has) eroded the idea that stealth alone is a strength unto itself. The USAF made this assertion with the advent of the F-22 and the retirement of the F-117, yet the idea that somehow "stealth" is the singular power of the maligned "fifth generation" is in signal reduction remains.
    Sensible argument

    e simple fact is: the F-22 is not (arguably) the best air superiority fighter because it is stealthy, or maneuverable, or because can super cruise.
    ok for stealth. for the rest (see famous dogfight video qith Rafale)

    1. They are federated systems, you can plug and play the Elbit SAPIR, or the OSF and the DDM NG on the Rafale, they are not all tied into the ICP as the sensors are in the F-22 or the F-35. These are not opinions, it is a fact.

    No it is your opinion, and a wrong one. They are all linked to MDPU

    The simple fact is that there is no substitute for tying all sensors and defensive countermeasures into the ICP of the aircraft
    Agree. Thats wahat do Rafale and incoming Gripen NG (dunno about EFA)

  16. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by halloweene View Post
    Could you develop please? It would be quite interesting...
    Seems like a simple enough concept...

    The writing is on the wall for 4th generation fighters. In the coming decade or two they will increasingly be relegated to secondary/support roles when facing capable opposition. In the case of the US, Russia, and China (or their export customers) this is of only limited concern because 5th generation fighters will be available to take on the more demanding missions. You don't need to stop flying a 4th generation jet the minute it can't operate on day-1 of a high-intensity war. There are still plenty of tasks available for those aircraft. (see for example the A-10) An F-15C in 2030 will be suitable for air policing, delivering MALD-Js, etc... but the US will have 1,000+ 5th generation fighters available by then.

    We are looking at the end of the European fighter industry, that is unless something truly dramatic changes in the next few years. Small scale UCAV research projects without any definite procurement tied to them aren't going to be able to maintain the industrial base.

  17. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by lukos View Post
    I have already explained and substantiated everything I came to explain:
    1. A distant point source is not confined to one pixel, for this reason an algorithm is useful in determining the spread, since the spread is related to the actual sub-pixel position:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DN-A6PWRFno
    2. Accuracy is not limited to pixel resolution:
    Exhibit A
    http://proceedings.spiedigitallibrar...icleid=1737844


    The same fundamentals are applicable to position determination in other fields. Centroid calculation is a major part of photonics.
    Exhibit B
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Staring_array


    Here (at start of article) is an example of what happens at pixel level:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Position_sensitive_device


    These are just some examples of the kinds of technologies that might be employed. You can get an X and Y-axis current, the ratio of which gives the position of the centroid on a pixel for positional accuracy purposes and the vector some of which gives the light intensity for imaging purposes.


    I imagine space is the main concern internally, though obviously traditional LOBL will be an option for externally carried missiles. Obviously the main idea will be to maintain stealth and surprise though and try and avoid furballs. However HMD has been used to cue missiles into LOAL visually, so in theory, simply having a sensor sending the image to the HMD, or providing an INS reference directly, shouldn't really make a difference.

    I see you are quoting me above. Where did that quote come from?

  18. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vnomad View Post
    Similar sentiments were voiced in the wake of the First World War. There are relatively few absolutes in the world. War with Russia or China is highly unlikely, but needs to be prepared for nevertheless, as means to prevent it if nothing else. China and Russia certainly take the possibility of war with a first rate power seriously enough to spend billions on their military modernization programs.
    You're referencing tactical level strategy earlier then cross over to strategic level strategy. The U.S. has always led the latter and worries about the former in due time. Tactics drive the battle, strategy drives the war.
    Go Huskers!

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    Quote Originally Posted by hopsalot View Post
    Seems like a simple enough concept...

    The writing is on the wall for 4th generation fighters. In the coming decade or two they will increasingly be relegated to secondary/support roles when facing capable opposition. In the case of the US, Russia, and China (or their export customers) this is of only limited concern because 5th generation fighters will be available to take on the more demanding missions. You don't need to stop flying a 4th generation jet the minute it can't operate on day-1 of a high-intensity war. There are still plenty of tasks available for those aircraft. (see for example the A-10) An F-15C in 2030 will be suitable for air policing, delivering MALD-Js, etc... but the US will have 1,000+ 5th generation fighters available by then.

    We are looking at the end of the European fighter industry, that is unless something truly dramatic changes in the next few years. Small scale UCAV research projects without any definite procurement tied to them aren't going to be able to maintain the industrial base.
    The F35 and its effect on the European aviation industry is the main driver behind France and the UK developing their own UCAV and post ECD fighters. Small scale by the standards of US procurement but then European fighters always have been.

    Whilst the UK will look at what the US plans to do with the F35 beyond the A/B/C variant I don't think we are looking at the F35 replacing the Typhoon or the Rafale.

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    The Typhoon and Rafale were meant to be 'pocket' heavy fighters, better than F-15A or Su-27P yet in a package 30-40% smaller.

    I know people around here are big fans of the F-15, but surely an F-15E driver would never mistake himself for an F-15C Golden Eagle ace. And I'm not so sure that F-15C even kept up with the Typhoon or Rafale F3 when it comes to air superiority, but it's more than ample to supplement the F-22A and F-35A in their roles. Mark the target, let the ninja swoop by and take out his victim with such precise accuracy that he gets the kill with but a stealthy puff of breath using a rice grain lofted through his freshly mowed reed straw. Where or where is the ninja? He's not invisible, but you only catch glimpses. Is that him, or is it a feint distraction? Typhoon and Rafale do not offer that kind of reassurance, but they do have good aim with their long bow that out-ranges the opponent's blunderbuss. Without sure awareness, neither the arrow nor lead shot are true to their goal. While the Europeans were perfecting the art of archery, the U.S. has been perfecting the art of stealth and indirect precision.
    Go Huskers!

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    In any case, the recapitalization of the USAF has been a failure. Originaly the F-16 and F-15 were not supposed to remain in service that long and we know what happened. Now they are trying to avoid a catastophe with their inventory. Talk about a failure...

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    Quote Originally Posted by hopsalot View Post
    Seems like a simple enough concept...

    The writing is on the wall for 4th generation fighters. In the coming decade or two they will increasingly be relegated to secondary/support roles when facing capable opposition. In the case of the US, Russia, and China (or their export customers) this is of only limited concern because 5th generation fighters will be available to take on the more demanding missions. You don't need to stop flying a 4th generation jet the minute it can't operate on day-1 of a high-intensity war. There are still plenty of tasks available for those aircraft. (see for example the A-10) An F-15C in 2030 will be suitable for air policing, delivering MALD-Js, etc... but the US will have 1,000+ 5th generation fighters available by then.

    We are looking at the end of the European fighter industry, that is unless something truly dramatic changes in the next few years. Small scale UCAV research projects without any definite procurement tied to them aren't going to be able to maintain the industrial base.
    4th generation fighters can operate day-1 provide they can can saturate the battlefield with standoff weopons, having big external jammers, big fuel tanks, big radars to provide situational awareness to every other asset. quantitiy is force in itself. but none of it is going to apply to 4th generation fighters from EU as there main customers the arabs will be in state of decomposition in less than 10 years and Germany will take hold of rest of industrial labor and economic system in EU.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hotshot View Post
    In any case, the recapitalization of the USAF has been a failure. Originaly the F-16 and F-15 were not supposed to remain in service that long and we know what happened. Now they are trying to avoid a catastophe with their inventory. Talk about a failure...
    I wouldn't go that far. Certainly it was a risk to postpone recapitalization as long as the USAF has, but with the F-35 production ramp now beginning the USAF is only a few years away from seeing large numbers of new fighters entering its force structure on a yearly basis. If you graphed the average age of the fleet, today would be a peak with that number falling fairly quickly from here on out.

    Lockheed's entire operation is gearing up for full-rate production in 2019, before which the number of jets is set to expand from 62 in LRIP 9 to 98 and 168 in lots 10 and 11, respectively. Production levels should continuing rising to a full-rate production of 240 jets per year.
    http://www.flightglobal.com/news/art...e-f-35-407970/

    Not all of those jets will be going to the USAF obviously, but people have to remember the sheer scale of the program. It will soon be producing as many fighters a year as Rafales have been produced to date.

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    Do you think there are lessons to be learnt from the F-22 and F-35 programs or do you think things went 'pretty well'? lol

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hotshot View Post
    In any case, the recapitalization of the USAF has been a failure.
    As opposed to the very successful recapitalizations of European air forces? Both the RAF & AdlA are being to reduced to what... about 180 fighters each? Smaller than Turkey, Korea & Israel, and not significantly more advanced either.
    Last edited by Vnomad; 30th March 2015 at 08:22.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hotshot View Post
    Do you think there are lessons to be learnt from the F-22 and F-35 programs or do you think things went 'pretty well'? lol
    There are always lessons to be learned...

    The point is that the USAF accepted some risks in embracing the strategy it has. It has a huge fleet of relatively un-upgraded 4th generation jets right now, but by ~2019 it will have several hundred operational F-35s in the full block III configuration. Every year after that will see another fighter wing worth of F-35s entering the force structure.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hopsalot View Post
    There are always lessons to be learned...

    The point is that the USAF accepted some risks in embracing the strategy it has. It has a huge fleet of relatively un-upgraded 4th generation jets right now, but by ~2019 it will have several hundred operational F-35s in the full block III configuration. Every year after that will see another fighter wing worth of F-35s entering the force structure.
    Like what?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vnomad View Post
    As opposed to the very successful recapitalizations of European air forces? Both the RAF & AdlA are being to reduced to what... about 180 fighters each? Smaller than Turkey, Korea & Israel, and not significantly more advanced either.
    The RAF has been reduced much more than the ArlA. The AdlA has much more than 180 planes.

    The USAF has the advantage of a very large budget, they can build pretty much anything they want in large numbers if they don't really get overboard with their planes. That is a huge advantage compared to the Europeans who try to do the best they can with what they have.

  29. #59
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    The limitations of the Eurocanards over the next couple of decades are largely immaterial, because the threat is nonexistent. What is important is to maintain the institutions, the training, the research & development (supplemented by espionage directed largely at the United States), and to preserve enough of the industrial base so as to provide the ability to ramp up investment and production if required, and to develop and field a next-generation platform in the appropriate timeframe.
    Last edited by Rii; 30th March 2015 at 12:23.

  30. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hotshot View Post
    The RAF has been reduced much more than the ArlA. The AdlA has much more than 180 planes.
    The 2013 White Paper directs the combat fleet to be reduced to 225 aircraft. With 45 of those operated by the MN, that leaves only 180 for the AdlA. The RAF's plans currently project 105 EFs and 70 F-35Bs (with another 70 odd F-35Bs for the RN), though over the short term they may be able to afford only half or so of the latter type.

    The USAF has the advantage of a very large budget, they can build pretty much anything they want in large numbers if they don't really get overboard with their planes.
    No they can't. The aircraft needs to be relatively affordable as well. Case in point: F-22.

    That is a huge advantage compared to the Europeans who try to do the best they can with what they have.
    When you choose to run three parallel programs instead of compromising on specifications & work-shares, it doesn't come as a surprise that the end product isn't cost effective. The US could have developed two or three separate types for each of its services, but it would never have achieved the economies of scale necessary to squeeze the unit costs down to 4th gen levels.

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