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Talk Of F-35 Project Being Scrapped!  
User currently offlineZkpilot From New Zealand, joined Mar 2006, 4865 posts, RR: 10
Posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 22895 times:

Over the past few days there has been a lot of speculation that not just the F-35C but the entire F-35 project being scrapped. Apparently there are major design flaws meaning the C model can't do arrestor hook landings, the other models apparently lack the range, manoeuverability, speed, payload of their rivals, and the whole aircraft is not particularly stealthy especially to newly developed/deployed radar bands. Finally the biggest hurdle is the massive cost of each aircraft.

If the project is scrapped/changed here are some things I see happening:

1) F-22 production reinstated for at least another 100 birds (the F-22 is far more capable, is proven and costs about the same). Further development of the F-16 to make it last perhaps 10 years longer than planned in time for a new fighter.

2) USN to get more F/A-18 Super Hornets, as above a bit of ongoing development to stretch their life til the navy can get a dedicated aircraft.

3) A scaled back F-35B without all the fancy stuff shaving a lot of weight and cost off and improving several areas of performance in the process (obviously not some of the fancy tricks) for the USMC and RN. The RN would of course have to consider its options regarding its carriers, perhaps leasing some Rafales or Super Hornets in the mean time.


I do see an important need to have the best fighters and technology for the USA however it must be balanced with cost and overall capability in terms of numbers. UCAV etc are the future but for the next 30 years I still see the need for the first choice to be a manned fighter. I'm not so sure that the Super Hornet and F-16 aren't up to the task for at least another decade and of course the F-22 will still be the best for at least 10 years and able to foot it with the latest for another 10 years past that.


56 types. 38 countries. 24 airlines.
275 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15833 posts, RR: 27
Reply 1, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 22796 times:

Quoting Zkpilot (Thread starter):
Over the past few days there has been a lot of speculation that not just the F-35C but the entire F-35 project being scrapped.

As critical as I have been of the fantasy that the JSF was, that would just be stupid. The money is all spent. Cancelling the program now means throwing all of that away and ending up with the same problems we had before but with less time to solve it. Any of the Navy brass that complain about the Super Hornet should be able to tell you that, because that is what they ended up with when they cancelled the A-12.

The USAF has some recourse in the form of a potential restart and future variants of the Raptor, but our allies would be hung out to dry.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlineRevelation From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 12965 posts, RR: 25
Reply 2, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 22577 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 1):
As critical as I have been of the fantasy that the JSF was, that would just be stupid. The money is all spent.

We had the X-35 prototype flying ten years ago and the actual F-35 flying five years ago and that hasn't mattered much either.

I think you are missing the key points of the post, that the F-35 is not meeting its design goals, and the threat environment has changed to the point where its stealth features have been defeated. Add to that the massive cost, and it is hard to make a case for this airframe over its predecessors.

Wiki reports that in November 2011, a Pentagon study team identified the following 13 areas of concern that remained to be addressed in the F-35:

> The Helmet mounted display system does not work properly.
> The fuel dump subsystem poses a fire hazard.
> The Integrated Power Package is unreliable and difficult to service.
> The F-35C's arresting hook does not work.
> Classified "survivability issues", which have been speculated to be about stealth.[125]
> The wing buffet is worse than previously reported.
> The airframe is unlikely to last through the required lifespan.
> The flight test program has yet to explore the most challenging areas.
> The software development is behind schedule.
> The aircraft is in danger of going overweight or, for the F-35B, too heavy for VTOL operations.
> There are multiple thermal management problems. The air conditioner fails to keep the pilot and controls cool enough, the roll posts on the F-35B overheat, and using the afterburner damages the aircraft.
> The automated logistics information system is partially developed.
> The lightning protection on the F-35 is uncertified, with areas of concern.

Seems to be a very long road ahead for the F-35.

[Edited 2012-04-29 07:50:07]


Inspiration, move me brightly!
User currently offlineZkpilot From New Zealand, joined Mar 2006, 4865 posts, RR: 10
Reply 3, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 22577 times:

Development money has been spent. The problem is that each aircraft was supposed to have cost about half what they are now likely to cost. Canada apparently wants out. The UK only needs them for its carriers (Rafale/Super Hornet will work for at least a decade) the RAF has the Typhoon. Australia will happily take the F-22 (which is more suited to their needs anyway), Japan also. That just leaves Israel pretty much and they have options as do any other operators.

The USMC is the only one that REALLY needs it for its VTOL capabilities.

All that development money isn't entirely wasted, a lot of information/lessons gained could be used in a future aircraft. One that isn't 3 planes in 1.



56 types. 38 countries. 24 airlines.
User currently offlinebikerthai From United States of America, joined Apr 2010, 2197 posts, RR: 4
Reply 4, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 22544 times:

Quoting Zkpilot (Reply 3):
"All that development money isn't entirely wasted, a lot of information/lessons gained could be used in a future aircraft. One that isn't 3 planes in 1."

LOL what we learned is LM makes expensive planes. Maybey they should stick with skunkworks where the expense is more worth while.

Guess we should stick with un-stealthy planes an leave stealth to UAV's. Kidding of course.

bt



Intelligent seeks knowledge. Enlightened seeks wisdom.
User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 571 posts, RR: 1
Reply 5, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 22508 times:

Quoting Zkpilot (Reply 3):
Canada apparently wants out.

No, they don't.

I hope it does get scrapped so all these stupid F35 threads can stop cluttering this forum.


User currently offlineLMP737 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 22492 times:

Quoting Zkpilot (Reply 3):
The USMC is the only one that REALLY needs it for its VTOL capabilities.

Or you could tell them Super Hornets or nothing.


User currently offlineZkpilot From New Zealand, joined Mar 2006, 4865 posts, RR: 10
Reply 7, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 22426 times:

Quoting LMP737 (Reply 6):
Quoting Zkpilot (Reply 3):
The USMC is the only one that REALLY needs it for its VTOL capabilities.

Or you could tell them Super Hornets or nothing.

except you can't operate them off VTOL ships...



56 types. 38 countries. 24 airlines.
User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1858 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 22388 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 2):

We had the X-35 prototype flying ten years ago and the actual F-35 flying five years ago and that hasn't mattered much either.

I think you are missing the key points of the post, that the F-35 is not meeting its design goals, and the threat environment has changed to the point where its stealth features have been defeated. Add to that the massive cost, and it is hard to make a case for this airframe over its predecessors.

Wiki reports that in November 2011, a Pentagon study team identified the following 13 areas of concern that remained to be addressed in the F-35:

> The Helmet mounted display system does not work properly.
> The fuel dump subsystem poses a fire hazard.
> The Integrated Power Package is unreliable and difficult to service.
> The F-35C's arresting hook does not work.
> Classified "survivability issues", which have been speculated to be about stealth.[125]
> The wing buffet is worse than previously reported.
> The airframe is unlikely to last through the required lifespan.
> The flight test program has yet to explore the most challenging areas.
> The software development is behind schedule.
> The aircraft is in danger of going overweight or, for the F-35B, too heavy for VTOL operations.
> There are multiple thermal management problems. The air conditioner fails to keep the pilot and controls cool enough, the roll posts on the F-35B overheat, and using the afterburner damages the aircraft.
> The automated logistics information system is partially developed.
> The lightning protection on the F-35 is uncertified, with areas of concern.

Seems to be a very long road ahead for the F-35.

Most of these issues have either been resolved or the fixes are underway.

And by your metric, we should have canceled this aircraft as well, which according to the GAO, had major issues with engine stalls, could not restart its engine in mid-air, had an excessive taxi speed, was suffering delays, had limited internal space for upgrades, and was increasingly vulnerable and expensive:
http://www.gao.gov/products/PSAD-77-41


User currently offlinesphealey From United States of America, joined May 2005, 378 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 22278 times:

http://www.foreignpolicy.com/article...jet_that_ate_the_pentagon?page=0,1

Articles like that don't just appear in publications such as "Foreign Policy"; this is a shot across the bow to some power group from some other power group. Who is which, and what their motives are, is entirely obscure (at least to me). But that isn't just another 1200 word'er dashed off by a writer who needs to make a car payment this month.

sPh


User currently offlineDevilfish From Philippines, joined Jan 2006, 4952 posts, RR: 1
Reply 10, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 22280 times:

Quoting Zkpilot (Thread starter):
I'm not so sure that the Super Hornet and F-16 aren't up to the task for at least another decade and of course the F-22 will still be the best for at least 10 years and able to foot it with the latest for another 10 years past that.
Quoting bikerthai (Reply 4):
Guess we should stick with un-stealthy planes an leave stealth to UAV's. Kidding of course.

No kidding.....maybe it's time serious attention is given to this.....   

http://www.flightglobal.com/Assets/GetAsset.aspx?ItemID=44298
http://www.flightglobal.com/Assets/GetAsset.aspx?ItemID=44298

What it couldn't handle, you let the F-22 take care of.



"Everyone is entitled to my opinion." - Garfield
User currently offlineKC135TopBoom From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 12181 posts, RR: 51
Reply 11, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 22276 times:

Yes, a lot of money has been spent on the F-35 program. But a lot more money is needed just to fix it. I say we cancel it now, reopen the F-22 program with the US buying about 950 more of them (including a Navalized version), sell it to our allies, buy the F-15SE as an interium replacement, and the F/A-18E/F.

The USMC already bought the British Harriers, but the UK is now without an aircraft to replace it. Perhaps they can fit normal steam cats to the CVFs? The RN and RAF can always accept the F/A-18E/F or the Rafales


User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15833 posts, RR: 27
Reply 12, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 22247 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 2):
I think you are missing the key points of the post, that the F-35 is not meeting its design goals,

The design goals were a fantasy.

Quoting Zkpilot (Reply 3):
Canada apparently wants out. The UK only needs them for its carriers (Rafale/Super Hornet will work for at least a decade) the RAF has the Typhoon.

If the other countries want out that would change the calculus a bit. But still, we'd force the Navy to fly more Super Hornets, which I really don't have too much of a problem with. If they don't like it they can thank Dick Cheney for cancelling the A-12.

Quoting Zkpilot (Reply 3):
Australia will happily take the F-22 (which is more suited to their needs anyway), Japan also.

I'm sure they would, but we won't give them any.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlineAWACSooner From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 1979 posts, RR: 1
Reply 13, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 22139 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 1):
The money is all spent.

No...it is not...it keeps being spent...and more and more military personnel are cut to fund this money pit!


User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15833 posts, RR: 27
Reply 14, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 22097 times:

Quoting AWACSooner (Reply 14):
No...it is not...it keeps being spent...and more and more military personnel are cut to fund this money pit!

Just think how much more will need to be spent in order to modernize the force the way the F-35 was supposed to. Cancel the program and you still have the same problem and less time to solve it.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3864 posts, RR: 27
Reply 15, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days 2 hours ago) and read 22078 times:
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Quoting BMI727 (Reply 15):
and less time to solve it.


this argument always puzzles me.. Is there some impending deadline we don't know about other than the synthetic retirement of easily extended current model a/c (other than the Harrier). Do the Marines really need a plane? Do we really need the Marines?.. forget tradition, what do they really provide that the Army, Navy and Air Force can't.


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1858 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days ago) and read 22033 times:

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 12):
Yes, a lot of money has been spent on the F-35 program. But a lot more money is needed just to fix it. I say we cancel it now, reopen the F-22 program with the US buying about 950 more of them (including a Navalized version), sell it to our allies, buy the F-15SE as an interium replacement, and the F/A-18E/F.

Even more money will have to be spent on F-22, which has major issues of its own. And it is an in service aircraft. The real issue is the avionics; it's still locked to i860 processors running ADA and its questionable whether there is sufficient cooling and processing capability to support the any future needed upgrades without costly upgrades.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 13):
If the other countries want out that would change the calculus a bit. But still, we'd force the Navy to fly more Super Hornets, which I really don't have too much of a problem with. If they don't like it they can thank Dick Cheney for cancelling the A-12.

The Navy doesn't want to buy more Super Hornets; notice that the most recent acquisitions are for the Growler, not the regular Super Hornet? And also note that the Navy refuses to fund a number of upgrades, such as steathy weapons pods. They don't think Super Hornet will be survivable as a platform in the near future.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 13):
The design goals were a fantasy.

EVERY tactical fighter design has a ton of compromises in it. There is no "perfect" design. It depends on what compromises you are willing to accept that's the issue. Obviously, the Air Force, Navy, and Marines think the compromises are doable for the F-35.

Personally, what I DON'T see in this forum are arguments dominated by actual engineers, ground crew, and pilots, some of the latter of whom may wind up with their lives actually depending on the F-35 doing what it's supposed to. They seem not to be worried. The UK, having already been burned by the cancellation of the Rolls-Royce/GE alternative engine, found themselves unwilling to pay to convert their carriers to CATOBAR and discussed cancelling their F-35C purchase...but are discussing no replacement option other than the F-35B! They don't seem to be worried about the performance of even the shortest-ranged, lowest payload, lowest g-rated of the three variants. Japan, no slouch in high tech, have added themselves to the customer list. They don't seem to be worried about anything but the possibility of cost overruns. Israel, probably more dependent on their air forces for their very survival than any other nation on earth, doesn't seem worried.

Quoting kanban (Reply 16):
this argument always puzzles me.. Is there some impending deadline we don't know about other than the synthetic retirement of easily extended current model a/c (other than the Harrier). Do the Marines really need a plane? Do we really need the Marines?.. forget tradition, what do they really provide that the Army, Navy and Air Force can't.

The current fleet is getting worn out and increasingly obsolete. There are major structural issues affecting the entire F-15, F-16, and F/A-18 fleet that could lead to fleet-wide permanent groundings, and it is increasingly not cost effective to continue upgrading and refurbishing these aircraft.


User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15833 posts, RR: 27
Reply 17, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 5 days ago) and read 22024 times:

Quoting kanban (Reply 16):
Is there some impending deadline we don't know about other than the synthetic retirement of easily extended current model a/c (other than the Harrier).

That is the deadline. The current planes won't last forever and the capabilities of the 20th century will only go so far in the 21st.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 17):
The Navy doesn't want to buy more Super Hornets;

They didn't want the Super Hornet in the first place but they didn't stop Cheney from cancelling the A-12 so that's what they got. Frankly, I don't feel too sorry for them having blown their chance at a low observable strike capability.

I'm not okay with it because it's a good option. I'm okay with it because the Navy screwed up and should lie in the bed they've made. If they'd not cancelled the A-12, the F-35 may never have started.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 17):
EVERY tactical fighter design has a ton of compromises in it. There is no "perfect" design.

The JSF sure sounded like one. Strike, vertical takeoff, stealth, dogfighting with the best of them, and the latest electronics all in a package cheaper than the F-22? That's a fantasy cooked up by bureaucrats.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 17):
Japan, no slouch in high tech, have added themselves to the customer list. They don't seem to be worried about anything but the possibility of cost overruns. Israel, probably more dependent on their air forces for their very survival than any other nation on earth, doesn't seem worried.

What other options would either of those two have? Both are rather concerned about threats at the moment too.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlinechecksixx From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 1141 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 21999 times:

Quoting Zkpilot (Thread starter):
Over the past few days there has been a lot of speculation that not just the F-35C but the entire F-35 project being scrapped. Apparently there are major design flaws meaning the C model can't do arrestor hook landings, the other models apparently lack the range, manoeuverability, speed, payload of their rivals, and the whole aircraft is not particularly stealthy especially to newly developed/deployed radar bands. Finally the biggest hurdle is the massive cost of each aircraft.

Quote a source for all this speculation that you talk about. Have not heard even a peep of that.

Thanks,

Check


User currently offlineKiwiRob From New Zealand, joined Jun 2005, 7837 posts, RR: 5
Reply 19, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 17 hours ago) and read 21778 times:

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 12):
Perhaps they can fit normal steam cats to the CVFs? The RN and RAF can always accept the F/A-18E/F or the Rafales

They can't, since they aren't nuclear powered that don't have the ability to generate lots of steam. They need EMALS, it's the only option.

A couple of weeks ago the Norwegian press started running stories about the govt cutting the F-35 purchase by about 25%, the loss of frames will be made up by more time spent in advanced simulators.


User currently offlinemoo From Falkland Islands, joined May 2007, 4089 posts, RR: 4
Reply 20, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 17 hours ago) and read 21767 times:

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 20):

Our last large aircraft carriers weren't nuclear powered either, and they had steam catapults.

All you need is a boiler, and that can be electrically heated.


User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 21, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 14 hours ago) and read 21646 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 17):
Personally, what I DON'T see in this forum are arguments dominated by actual engineers, ground crew, and pilots, some of the latter of whom may wind up with their lives actually depending on the F-35 doing what it's supposed to. They seem not to be worried.
Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 17):
Japan, no slouch in high tech, have added themselves to the customer list.

Who have cut their firm purchase from, I believe, 42 to 4. Italy has cut purchase back to about 90, UK to about 100. Israel wants financing assistance on their purchase (read: gift, since the Israelis never actually pay for anything). That's now, wait until the actual cost of this goat comes out. Canada likely to cut back to about 40 or so given the government's stated "official" cost, notwithstanding the Auditor-General or the Parliamentary Budget officer's reports. In fact, I think if the air force brass hats were given the choice of 40 F-35s or 75-80 Super Hornets, they'd likely choose the latter.

As for arguments "dominated by actual engineers yadda yadda", many of the people to whom you might want to refer are prohibited from commenting in a public forum on this topic and are anyway strongly biased in a particular direction.

Once again I try to make the point, as I have tried to do with my American colleagues, you can only have the military you can afford. We can't afford the total F-35 package price.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlineKiwiRob From New Zealand, joined Jun 2005, 7837 posts, RR: 5
Reply 22, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 14 hours ago) and read 21624 times:

Quoting moo (Reply 21):

Our last large aircraft carriers weren't nuclear powered either, and they had steam catapults.

All you need is a boiler, and that can be electrically heated.

Yes they were designed with boilers and the steam was a free side effect which allowed for steam catapults, the CV doesn't have a boiler room and according to what I have read fitting boilers for steam catapults isn't possible.


User currently offlineZkpilot From New Zealand, joined Mar 2006, 4865 posts, RR: 10
Reply 23, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 21620 times:

Quoting checksixx (Reply 19):

Quote a source for all this speculation that you talk about. Have not heard even a peep of that.

Thanks,

Check
http://blogs.crikey.com.au/planetalk...call-in-us-foreign-policy-journal/
http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition...fighter-jet-of-the-future-1.363626
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...ighter-japan-idUSTRE82001I20120301
http://www.defencetalk.com/will-the-...aft-that-can-replace-jsfail-41889/

Also here is a very detailed indepth paper taking a look at the F-35
http://www.scribd.com/doc/88946660/W...SN-and-USMC-Shouldn-t-Buy-the-F-35

[Edited 2012-04-30 08:08:16]


56 types. 38 countries. 24 airlines.
User currently offlinemoo From Falkland Islands, joined May 2007, 4089 posts, RR: 4
Reply 24, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 21623 times:

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 23):
Yes they were designed with boilers and the steam was a free side effect which allowed for steam catapults, the CV doesn't have a boiler room and according to what I have read fitting boilers for steam catapults isn't possible.

No, it doesn't have a boiler room, but I don't accept that space cannot be found for a modern linear boiler system dedicated to the catapult system - its nowhere near the capacities required for ship propulsion, so a dedicated boiler is nowhere near the same space hog as that of ages gone by.


User currently offlineGDB From United Kingdom, joined May 2001, 13253 posts, RR: 77
Reply 25, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 21860 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 9):
And by your metric, we should have canceled this aircraft as well, which according to the GAO, had major issues with engine stalls, could not restart its engine in mid-air, had an excessive taxi speed, was suffering delays, had limited internal space for upgrades, and was increasingly vulnerable and expensive:
http://www.gao.gov/products/PSAD-77-41

....Which goes to show there is nothing new under the sun.

F-22 IIRC had a long and often difficult gestation.

Never mind fast jets, so did the C-17!
Almost cancelled more than once.


User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3864 posts, RR: 27
Reply 26, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 21817 times:
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Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 17):
The current fleet is getting worn out and increasingly obsolete. There are major structural issues affecting the entire F-15, F-16, and F/A-18 fleet that could lead to fleet-wide permanent groundings, and it is increasingly not cost effective to continue upgrading and refurbishing these aircraft.


conveniently missing is buying new updated versions of these a/c.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 17):
Personally, what I DON'T see in this forum are arguments dominated by actual engineers, ground crew, and pilots, some of the latter of whom may wind up with their lives actually depending on the F-35 doing what it's supposed to. They seem not to be worried.


a substantial percentage of these people are forbidden to comment either by company security or military security.


User currently offlineLMP737 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 27, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 6 hours ago) and read 21761 times:

Quoting Zkpilot (Reply 7):
except you can't operate them off VTOL ships...

Yes I know you can't that is kind of my point.


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1858 posts, RR: 0
Reply 28, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 21671 times:

Quoting kanban (Reply 26):
conveniently missing is buying new updated versions of these a/c.

Conveniently missing is the massive lead time and limited production capabilities of the current generation aircraft; you do realize it takes 3 years from when you order to get a F-15 right now, right? Ditto the F-16. At full rate production, there will be 1 F-35 rolling off the assembly line every day. Combined, the annual production capacity of the F-15, F-16, and F/A-18 is less than a quarter of that than what is planned for F-35. Only the F-16 has ever come close in the past, and that was with multiple assembly lines.

Quoting GDB (Reply 25):

....Which goes to show there is nothing new under the sun.

F-22 IIRC had a long and often difficult gestation.

Never mind fast jets, so did the C-17!
Almost cancelled more than once.

I can find more. For example. F/A-18 had more than its fair share of development issues (and some that cropped up after IOC!). The F-14 actually crashed during testing. The F-15 also had its fair share of development issues. Needless to say, every single fighter since WWII has had issues or a difficult gestation. This isn't new.


User currently offlinechecksixx From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 1141 posts, RR: 0
Reply 29, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 21635 times:

Quoting Zkpilot (Reply 23):
Quoting checksixx (Reply 19):

Quote a source for all this speculation that you talk about. Have not heard even a peep of that.

Thanks,

Check
http://blogs.crikey.com.au/planetalk...call-in-us-foreign-policy-journal/
http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition...fighter-jet-of-the-future-1.363626
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/...ighter-japan-idUSTRE82001I20120301
http://www.defencetalk.com/will-the-...aft-that-can-replace-jsfail-41889/

Also here is a very detailed indepth paper taking a look at the F-35
http://www.scribd.com/doc/88946660/W...SN-and-USMC-Shouldn-t-Buy-the-F-35

[Edited 2012-04-30 08:08:16]

Just as I thought...nothing...except an article from a year ago. There is nothing there about actually cancelling the F-35. Just opinions. When you have something real, get back to me.


User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3864 posts, RR: 27
Reply 30, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 21610 times:
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Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 28):
Conveniently missing is the massive lead time and limited production capabilities of the current generation aircraft; you do realize it takes 3 years from when you order to get a F-15 right now, right? Ditto the F-16.


still beats waiting 8 years for a maybe plane the maybe will live up to it's hype. production lines can be added if needed. it's all relative to the real need.


User currently offlineOzair From Australia, joined Jan 2005, 881 posts, RR: 2
Reply 31, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days ago) and read 21606 times:

Quoting Zkpilot (Reply 3):
Australia will happily take the F-22 (which is more suited to their needs anyway)

I don't think you have thought that out correctly. If you gave the RAAF the option of any current fighter jet in the world the F-22 would be the last one on the list! The F-22 suffers from short range, a limited range of weapons, an incredibly high cost per hour, a limited future upgrade path and it has none of the air to ground capabilities the RAAF needs.


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1858 posts, RR: 0
Reply 32, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 4 days ago) and read 21584 times:

Quoting Ozair (Reply 31):
I don't think you have thought that out correctly. If you gave the RAAF the option of any current fighter jet in the world the F-22 would be the last one on the list! The F-22 suffers from short range, a limited range of weapons, an incredibly high cost per hour, a limited future upgrade path and it has none of the air to ground capabilities the RAAF needs.

Indeed, not to mention a complete maintenance headache. F-35 is designed to be way more user friendly in terms of maintenance. Take for example the stealth coating. They've done a lot of testing in regards to normal wear and tear on the skin of F-35 to ensure that the stealth features aren't compromised:
http://www.sldinfo.com/the-f-35-low-...-for-21st-century-combat-aviation/
Note the last bit where they actually have a slab of stealth coating on a doormat at Lockheed Martin to test durability. No degradation even after 25,000 steps all over the mat.

In addition, they've eliminated a lot of the gaps in the skin the F-35 compared to the F-22, due to the heavy usage of machined carbon fiber, which fits a lot tighter with tighter tolerances, meaning less gap filling epoxy's. The F-35 is about 42% composite by weight, compared to the F-22 at 22% and the F-16 at 2%.
http://www.compositesworld.com/artic.../composites-machining-for-the-f-35
http://www.compositesworld.com/articles/skinning-the-f-35-fighter

Very impressive technology involved here.


User currently offlineMax Q From United States of America, joined May 2001, 4780 posts, RR: 19
Reply 33, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 23 hours ago) and read 21582 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 32):

Indeed, not to mention a complete maintenance headache. F-35 is designed to be way more user friendly in terms of maintenance. Take for example the stealth coating. They've done a lot of testing in regards to normal wear and tear on the skin of F-35 to ensure that the stealth features aren't compromised:

Why not call it 'the F35' What is the point of abbreviating it so ?!



The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.
User currently offlinerwessel From United States of America, joined Jan 2007, 2413 posts, RR: 2
Reply 34, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 22 hours ago) and read 21553 times:
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Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 32):
Indeed, not to mention a complete maintenance headache. F-35 is designed to be way more user friendly in terms of maintenance. Take for example the stealth coating. They've done a lot of testing in regards to normal wear and tear on the skin of F-35 to ensure that the stealth features aren't compromised:

And the F-22 was promised to be more reliable and easier to maintain than an F-15.


User currently offlineFVTu134 From Russia, joined Aug 2005, 173 posts, RR: 1
Reply 35, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 21425 times:

Well I think the USN ought to look at a certain aircraft type that already operated from the Truman I think it was... The hook is at the right distance from the gear, and I think most of the problems have been ironed out... Kind of off-the shelf buying without all the headaches...

http://www.navy.mil/view_single.asp?id=59175

I'm sure Mr. Dassault will be happy to provide a discount for an aircraft order  

FVTu134



who decided that a Horizon should be HORIZONtal???
User currently offlineFlighty From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 8769 posts, RR: 3
Reply 36, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 21362 times:

Quoting Zkpilot (Thread starter):
F-22 production reinstated for at least another 100 birds (the F-22 is far more capable, is proven and costs about the same).

Of course the F-35 should have been cancelled many years ago. It went way off goals years ago. It is very beneficial to cancel programs that are off goal.

Also, believe it or not, when people threaten my job, I perform a lot better. I wonder why that is?

We should _expect_ that without any threat of cancellation or any basic program stewardship, each F-35 will be made of Play-Doh and cost $35 billion. The program was designed to yield that result, so let's see if they can accomplish that.

[Edited 2012-05-01 06:24:09]

User currently offlinespudh From Ireland, joined Jul 2009, 301 posts, RR: 1
Reply 37, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 21310 times:

Old Chinese saying:

No matter how far you've gone down the wrong path TURN BACK!



But I think with the F-35 the wrong path may have gone right round the globe and they might just get close to where they wanted to be despite themselves.

An awful lot of the F-35 issue is caused by the immediacy of modern media.

How long did it take for the hook skip issue on the C to get out? In previous programmes the solution would already have been found before the problem was announced which would have killed the media response.

The only talk would have been 'ok, ye got it working but how much did that cost' whereas now its 'it can't land on a carrier, kill the program'. One of the F-111B prototypes came out a whopping 70%+ overweight, now there's an overrun, but the programme was already dead before that got out to the general public.

I don't have timelines available to me but it would be interesting to compare the reporting of the crash of the F-14 prototype to the crash of the F-22 prototype (or was that a YF-22?).

Quoting Revelation (Reply 2):

Wiki reports that in November 2011, a Pentagon study team identified the following 13 areas of concern that remained to be addressed in the F-35:

> The Helmet mounted display system does not work properly.
> The fuel dump subsystem poses a fire hazard.
> The Integrated Power Package is unreliable and difficult to service.
> The F-35C's arresting hook does not work.
> Classified "survivability issues", which have been speculated to be about stealth.[125]
> The wing buffet is worse than previously reported.
> The airframe is unlikely to last through the required lifespan.
> The flight test program has yet to explore the most challenging areas.
> The software development is behind schedule.
> The aircraft is in danger of going overweight or, for the F-35B, too heavy for VTOL operations.
> There are multiple thermal management problems. The air conditioner fails to keep the pilot and controls cool enough, the roll posts on the F-35B overheat, and using the afterburner damages the aircraft.
> The automated logistics information system is partially developed.
> The lightning protection on the F-35 is uncertified, with areas of concern.

Outside of the Helmet display I don't think there is a single fault in the list above that has not been seen and dealt with before. The C-17 is now a paragon of virtue but was almost stillborn. The F-15 and F-18 had bad buffet problems (The F-15 originally had square wing tips, chopping off a corner was a partial cure). The F-18 E/F is in service with wing drop issues.
The F-18 has well documented fatigue issues. Every US fighter flying today went through a gestation period with growing pains. At one stage in 1979, 132 of the 400 odd then produced USN fleet of F-14s were parked on the ramp in Miramar broken down!!. How much of that was reported.

All the century series of fighters had problems. The inabiity of the F-102 to fulfill its specification as a supersonic interceptor role in any way must have been mildly disappointing yet a 1000 of them were procured!

Overweight, Over budget, Behind schedule and Under performing has been the fate of every fighter except the A-10. The only reason the A-10 was an exception is that no-one wanted it so it didn't get meddled with and performance acceptance was a contractual trade off for staying on budget.

The reason most of it went unnoticed was down to media technology.


User currently offlineKC135TopBoom From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 12181 posts, RR: 51
Reply 38, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 21307 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 12):
If they don't like it they can thank Dick Cheney for cancelling the A-12.

No, the A=12 program was canceled for costs overruns, just like the F-35 program is in now.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 16):
The Navy doesn't want to buy more Super Hornets; notice that the most recent acquisitions are for the Growler, not the regular Super Hornet? And also note that the Navy refuses to fund a number of upgrades, such as steathy weapons pods. They don't think Super Hornet will be survivable as a platform in the near future.

Then your RCAF is in real trouble today, as their CF-18s are no where near as capable as the Super Hornet is. But the USN and RAAF both disagree with you on the survival issue of the SH. But I guess you know more than they do......NOT.

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 19):
Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 12):Perhaps they can fit normal steam cats to the CVFs? The RN and RAF can always accept the F/A-18E/F or the Rafales

They can't, since they aren't nuclear powered that don't have the ability to generate lots of steam. They need EMALS, it's the only option.
Quoting moo (Reply 20):
Our last large aircraft carriers weren't nuclear powered either, and they had steam catapults.

All you need is a boiler, and that can be electrically heated.

Correct.

Quoting GDB (Reply 25):
Never mind fast jets, so did the C-17!
Almost cancelled more than once.

Yes, it was threatened twice with cancelation, both times when MD was managing the program. After the merger of Boeing and MD, and the C-17 program placed under Boeing control, it has become a model DOD procurment program.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 28):
Quoting kanban (Reply 26):conveniently missing is buying new updated versions of these a/c.
Conveniently missing is the massive lead time and limited production capabilities of the current generation aircraft; you do realize it takes 3 years from when you order to get a F-15 right now, right? Ditto the F-16. At full rate production, there will be 1 F-35 rolling off the assembly line every day. Combined, the annual production capacity of the F-15, F-16, and F/A-18 is less than a quarter of that than what is planned for F-35. Only the F-16 has ever come close in the past, and that was with multiple assembly lines.

Yes, it may take 3 years time for long lead items, but how long is it going to take to get the first fully capable F-35? 2020 is what most are now thinking, the 2017 date is proven to be not acheivable. The F-15, F-16, and F/A-18E/F are all still in production, and Tiawan may finally be able to order their 66 F-16C/Ds. So that means the production line backlog keeps growing, as Saudi Arabia already has their order for 80 F-15s approved. The F-35 has never been planned for a production rate of 30 per month. You cannot spit out a stealth anything at that rate. The best rate is planned at 10 per month, about one every 3 days.

You really do not know what you are talking about. I live in Fort Worth, and am retired from the USAF where I flew the KC-135, and the LM plant that will build the F-35 is just down the street from my home (about 3 miles away) in west Fort Worth. I know a bit more about the program than most, and without going into details (I can't) I will say the program is in trouble, with all of the customers.

For military forces, quality is a good thing to have, but more important is quantity. Even the most advanced systems can be overwelmed by numbers. The F-35 is pushing the technological envelope. There are limits to technology, and the F-35 is promising to go beyond current technology limits, well before we have an understanding of it. So, its promises cannot be kept, at least not right now.

I will admit, that due to the costs overruns in the program, and parts that have to be redisigned, I am not a fan of the program. I see other fighters, just as capable, or more capable for lower overall costs. Some have at least partial (frontal) stealth, like the F-15SE.


User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 571 posts, RR: 1
Reply 39, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 12 hours ago) and read 21275 times:

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 38):
Then your RCAF is in real trouble today, as their CF-18s are no where near as capable as the Super Hornet is.

I've seen the CF-18 run circles around a Super Hornet in A/A combat. It was a joke really. Along with that, we did just fine with our "less capable" hornet in Libya. The Super Hornet is a fat, slow and oversized bomb truck that will get sent to the desert when the F-35 gets into service.


User currently offlineRevelation From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 12965 posts, RR: 25
Reply 40, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 21207 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 8):
Most of these issues have either been resolved or the fixes are underway.

It'd be nice to see an independent source say that.

It'd be nice if all those fixes weren't driving up the cost.

And, as below, only 20% of the flight testing has been accomplished so far.

I don't know about you, but as an actual engineer, it's usually the last 20% where the cost comes in.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 8):
And by your metric, we should have canceled this aircraft as well, which according to the GAO, had major issues with engine stalls, could not restart its engine in mid-air, had an excessive taxi speed, was suffering delays, had limited internal space for upgrades, and was increasingly vulnerable and expensive:

Ah to be back in 1976 again!

The threats we face now are economic ones, not military ones, yet we're too busy fighting the last (cold) war to figure that out.

The US spends more on defense than the rest of the world combined, and our economy can't/won't keep supporting that.

Quoting sphealey (Reply 9):

Articles like that don't just appear in publications such as "Foreign Policy"; this is a shot across the bow to some power group from some other power group. Who is which, and what their motives are, is entirely obscure (at least to me). But that isn't just another 1200 word'er dashed off by a writer who needs to make a car payment this month.

Since it didn't draw any comment, I'll drop in a fair use quote:

Quote:

This grotesquely unpromising plan has already resulted in multitudes of problems -- and 80 percent of the flight testing remains. A virtual flying piano, the F-35 lacks the F-16's agility in the air-to-air mode and the F-15E's range and payload in the bombing mode, and it can't even begin to compare to the A-10 at low-altitude close air support for troops engaged in combat. Worse yet, it won't be able to get into the air as often to perform any mission -- or just as importantly, to train pilots -- because its complexity prolongs maintenance and limits availability. The aircraft most like the F-35, the F-22, was able to get into the air on average for only 15 hours per month in 2010 when it was fully operational. (In 2011, the F-22 was grounded for almost five months and flew even less.)

This mediocrity is not overcome by the F-35's "fifth-generation" characteristics, the most prominent of which is its "stealth." Despite what many believe, "stealth" is not invisibility to radar; it is limited-detection ranges against some radar types at some angles. Put another way, certain radars, some of them quite antiquated, can see "stealthy" aircraft at quite long ranges, and even the susceptible radars can see the F-35 at certain angles. The ultimate demonstration of this shortcoming occurred in the 1999 Kosovo war, when 1960s vintage Soviet radar and missile equipment shot down a "stealthy" F-117 bomber and severely damaged a second.

The bottom line: The F-35 is not the wonder its advocates claim. It is a gigantic performance disappointment, and in some respects a step backward. The problems, integral to the design, cannot be fixed without starting from a clean sheet of paper.

It also says that even if the price doesn't grow any more, F-35 will be consuming 38% of the DOD procurement budget, and that LM won't even venture a date as to when we can expect the F-35 to be in service, with most guesses being around 2019.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 12):
The design goals were a fantasy.

One lustily fought over by the defense contractors.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 12):
. If they don't like it they can thank Dick Cheney for cancelling the A-12.

Which he was right to do. The longer the program ran, the further it got from its goals, and the less sure the contractors were that they knew how to meet the goals.

Quoting AWACSooner (Reply 13):
No...it is not...it keeps being spent...and more and more military personnel are cut to fund this money pit!

That's ok, LM will still get paid.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 14):
Just think how much more will need to be spent in order to modernize the force the way the F-35 was supposed to.

The point is we can't afford to modernize the fleet the way the F-35 was supposed to.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 16):
The Navy doesn't want to buy more Super Hornets; notice that the most recent acquisitions are for the Growler, not the regular Super Hornet? And also note that the Navy refuses to fund a number of upgrades, such as steathy weapons pods. They don't think Super Hornet will be survivable as a platform in the near future.

Either that, or they are plowing so much money into F-35 they can't spend on the SH.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 16):
Personally, what I DON'T see in this forum are arguments dominated by actual engineers, ground crew, and pilots,

I'm an actual software engineer with 25+ years experience, as well as a concerned taxpayer.

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 19):
A couple of weeks ago the Norwegian press started running stories about the govt cutting the F-35 purchase by about 25%, the loss of frames will be made up by more time spent in advanced simulators.

Yes, in the real world, there are consequences to overspending, and the US is on a collision cost with reality.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 21):

Once again I try to make the point, as I have tried to do with my American colleagues, you can only have the military you can afford. We can't afford the total F-35 package price.

  



Inspiration, move me brightly!
User currently offlinespudh From Ireland, joined Jul 2009, 301 posts, RR: 1
Reply 41, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 21238 times:

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 39):
I've seen the CF-18 run circles around a Super Hornet in A/A combat. It was a joke really. Along with that, we did just fine with our "less capable" hornet in Libya. The Super Hornet is a fat, slow and oversized bomb truck that will get sent to the desert when the F-35 gets into service.

A Hornet pilot who flew numerous side-by-side comparison flights with F/A-18E/F SuperHornets said: "We outran them, we out-flew them and we ran them out of gas. I was embarrassed for them"

Someone elses words, not mine.

I'd still take an AESA equipped SH over a Legacy H any day of the week just for the radar alone. No matter how much you love or admire the CF-18 its at the end of its growth potential whereas the SH still has room for expanded capabilities which will keep it competitive for another decade at least. Is that worth the money? Hardly, but the F-18 was an odd enough choice for Australia and Canada in the first place.


User currently offlinebikerthai From United States of America, joined Apr 2010, 2197 posts, RR: 4
Reply 42, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 9 hours ago) and read 21123 times:

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 39):
I've seen the CF-18 run circles around a Super Hornet in A/A combat.

LOL. Do you mean the the similar way an A-4 will run circles around an F-14? Queue Mr. Kenny Loggins.   



bt



Intelligent seeks knowledge. Enlightened seeks wisdom.
User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15833 posts, RR: 27
Reply 43, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 20944 times:

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 38):
No, the A=12 program was canceled for costs overruns, just like the F-35 program is in now.

And there is a lesson to be learned: you have to work through the schedule and budget overruns to end up with the right capabilities. Running away and cancelling programs whenever anything doesn't go according to plan just leaves us with the same problem and likely a suboptimal, stopgap solution.

Quoting Revelation (Reply 40):
The point is we can't afford to modernize the fleet the way the F-35 was supposed to.

We'll have to. Because if we don't find the money you can bet China will. Might be time to stop giving away money to people for having kids.

Quoting spudh (Reply 41):
A Hornet pilot who flew numerous side-by-side comparison flights with F/A-18E/F SuperHornets said: "We outran them, we out-flew them and we ran them out of gas. I was embarrassed for them"

Not surprising. The Super Hornet is bigger and far less optimized for air-to-air combat. I'd expect a similar result in a fight between an F-15E and F-15C.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlinebikerthai From United States of America, joined Apr 2010, 2197 posts, RR: 4
Reply 44, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 20923 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 43):
Might be time to stop giving away money to people for having kids.

Why? We would run out of able bodies people to fight our wars for us.  

Moderator, you can delete my post as appropriate. I just could not resist a political reply to a political statement.

bt



Intelligent seeks knowledge. Enlightened seeks wisdom.
User currently offlinesphealey From United States of America, joined May 2005, 378 posts, RR: 0
Reply 45, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 20906 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 43):
And there is a lesson to be learned: you have to work through the schedule and budget overruns to end up with the right capabilities.

"Work through" is doing a lot of heavy lifting in that sentence.

I've done a lot of systems design, software, and implementation work/management over the years and I certainly understand that projects and products are often more difficult and cost more than originally expected. And that uncovering the problems through doing the work is the only way to get to the goal. But the overruns on the F-35 ("spirals", "rebaseline'ings", whatever the 5x cost increase is being called this turn of the merry-go-round) is more than a bit out of hand. Also that the possibility of getting caught in the sunk cost fallacy has to be evaluated at every milestone, which AFAIKS isn't happening with this program.

sPh


User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3864 posts, RR: 27
Reply 46, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 20888 times:
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Well we'll see how much longer Canada will stick to this since they are going to reevaluate the program and their needs.

http://www.flightglobal.com/blogs/th...ew-secretariat-urges-a-comple.html


User currently offlineRevelation From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 12965 posts, RR: 25
Reply 47, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 20863 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 43):
And there is a lesson to be learned: you have to work through the schedule and budget overruns to end up with the right capabilities.

I guess you are presuming all designs, including this "fantasy" (your words) will converge rather than diverge especially given infinite money.

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 43):
We'll have to. Because if we don't find the money you can bet China will.

I'll take that bet. It's clear their plan is to build their strength economically not militarily. We're still stuck in the cold war mentality, outspending the entire world combined (yes, that includes China) on defense while they've been busy buying out or undercutting our manufacturing sector and moving factories to China.

Meanwhile we're pouring out money down into a bottomless pit trying to build the weapons to fight the cold war all over again.



Inspiration, move me brightly!
User currently offlinechecksixx From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 1141 posts, RR: 0
Reply 48, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 3 days ago) and read 20726 times:

Quoting FVTu134 (Reply 35):
Well I think the USN ought to look at a certain aircraft type that already operated from the Truman I think it was... The hook is at the right distance from the gear, and I think most of the problems have been ironed out... Kind of off-the shelf buying without all the headaches...

http://www.navy.mil/view_single.asp?id=59175

I'm sure Mr. Dassault will be happy to provide a discount for an aircraft order

FVTu134

That would be a tremendous mistake...the goal is to move forward, not backward, with stealth and capabilities. I would call Dassault fighter aircraft gen 3+ at best.


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1858 posts, RR: 0
Reply 49, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 20707 times:

Quoting rwessel (Reply 34):
And the F-22 was promised to be more reliable and easier to maintain than an F-15.

When you are working with first generation stealth technology, things don't go as well as you expect. The B-2's skin is likewise difficult to maintain. The main issue with the F-22's skin is the heavy reliance on specialized stealth coatings that weren't very durable. F-35 avoids the need to use stealthy appliqués and coatings by curing the substance into the composite skin of the aircraft into what Lockheed Martin calls a fiber mat. In order to actually degrade the stealth signature of F-35, you will literally have to punch holes in the skin unlike F-22, where a simple scratch or misaligned panel will significantly harm the stealth signature of the F-22.

In earlier stealth aircraft, the stealth in effect is a parasitic application of a multiple stack-up of material systems done in final finish after the actual airframe is built and completed. In the case of the F-35, the major revolution is that they've incorporated much of the LO system directly into the air frame itself. The materials have been manufactured right into the structure, so they have the durability and lifetime qualities.

As F-35 is already 40% composite by weight, curing the stealth compounds into the skin panels greatly improves durability, a special requirement because the Navy and USMC will never accept an aircraft on their ships that could not handle conditions at sea. Remember, the F-35 project office at the DoD is dominated by NAVAIR personnel. F-35 is very much a Navy program verses an Air Force program. A lot of durability testing went into the skin of the F-35 to ensure that it was durable especially in a naval environment.

I will also note that the F-35 will be the first aircraft in service to make use of structural nanocomposites, more specifically, carbon nanotube reinforced polymer (CNRP), which is several times stronger than traditional CFRP. Lockheed Martin has developed a process to produce CNRP components much more economically than in the past specifically for F-35. For example, on LRIP 4 and further aircraft, there will be a new wingtip fairing being made out of CNRP. This component is being made for one-tenth of the cost of the equivalent CFRP component.

Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 38):
Then your RCAF is in real trouble today, as their CF-18s are no where near as capable as the Super Hornet is. But the USN and RAAF both disagree with you on the survival issue of the SH. But I guess you know more than they do......NOT.

The Navy plans on retiring Super Hornet by 2025, with very minimal upgrades. They don't want to invest in further upgrades. The RAAF only bought Super Hornet as an interim aircraft to replace their F-111 fleet.

Quoting spudh (Reply 41):
I'd still take an AESA equipped SH over a Legacy H any day of the week just for the radar alone. No matter how much you love or admire the CF-18 its at the end of its growth potential whereas the SH still has room for expanded capabilities which will keep it competitive for another decade at least. Is that worth the money? Hardly, but the F-18 was an odd enough choice for Australia and Canada in the first place.

The Super Hornet is reaching its limits in terms of upgrades. For example, the new IRST system is not installed on the aircraft directly; they are modifying the centerline fuselage drop tank to install the IRST, which will cut into external fuel capability. Basically, the more capability you want to add, the more you have to hang pods and equipment off the pylons on current generation aircraft, meaning there is 1 less pylon for weapons and fuel.



[Edited 2012-05-01 22:40:30]

User currently offlinerwessel From United States of America, joined Jan 2007, 2413 posts, RR: 2
Reply 50, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 20645 times:
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Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 49):
When you are working with first generation stealth technology, things don't go as well as you expect. The B-2's skin is likewise difficult to maintain. The main issue with the F-22's skin is the heavy reliance on specialized stealth coatings that weren't very durable. F-35 avoids the need to use stealthy appliqués and coatings by curing the substance into the composite skin of the aircraft into what Lockheed Martin calls a fiber mat. In order to actually degrade the stealth signature of F-35, you will literally have to punch holes in the skin unlike F-22, where a simple scratch or misaligned panel will significantly harm the stealth signature of the F-22.

First generation? The F-22 program specifically promised that the large issues with maintaining the prior generation aircraft's (F-117, B-2) stealth coating as not being an issue the F-22 would face.


User currently offlinemoo From Falkland Islands, joined May 2007, 4089 posts, RR: 4
Reply 51, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 20623 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 49):
The Navy plans on retiring Super Hornet by 2025, with very minimal upgrades.

You aren't seriously suggesting that the USN are buying aircraft today (MYP III - 2011 to 2013 delivery), with the intention of withdrawing them from service in just 12 or 13 years time? Including Growlers?

Sorry, but a lot of what you claim just doesn't pass a basic laugh test.


User currently offlineOzair From Australia, joined Jan 2005, 881 posts, RR: 2
Reply 52, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 20606 times:

Quoting rwessel (Reply 50):
The F-22 program specifically promised that the large issues with maintaining the prior generation aircraft's (F-117, B-2) stealth coating as not being an issue the F-22 would face.

That is not an accurate statement. The RFPs for the ATF program were released in 1985, three years before either the F-117 or the B-2 were formally acknowledged to the public, 2 years after the F-117 reached IOC and 4 years before the B-2 flew for the first time. Stealth for the ATF was in its infancy and given that the F-117 and the B-2 were deeply buried black programs for the USAF did not influence the stealth coatings for the ATF.

Quoting moo (Reply 51):
You aren't seriously suggesting that the USN are buying aircraft today (MYP III - 2011 to 2013 delivery), with the intention of withdrawing them from service in just 12 or 13 years time? Including Growlers?

I don't think Pointblank is suggesting that all super hornets will be gone by 2025. The first frames, delivered around the year 2000 will leave the fleet by 2025 and the entire lot probably gone by 2035.

The Growlers are a different story, they will probably serve as long as the USN can keep them in the air, especially if the EA-6B service life is anything to go by. It will actually work in favour of the Growler fleet having the SH depart the fleet as it will provide a ready supply of spares.

Quoting Revelation (Reply 40):

Since it didn't draw any comment, I'll drop in a fair use quote:

Most of the stuff provided in that quote is simply not true. For instance, it is pretty clear that the F-35 will meet it's performance goal for exceeding F-16 manoeuvrability. Do you think if there was any doubt about the WVR performance of the aircraft the USAF would still accept it? And none of the participating nations are disputing the capability of the airframe, only the price.


User currently offlinemoo From Falkland Islands, joined May 2007, 4089 posts, RR: 4
Reply 53, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 20614 times:

Quoting Ozair (Reply 52):
I don't think Pointblank is suggesting that all super hornets will be gone by 2025. The first frames, delivered around the year 2000 will leave the fleet by 2025 and the entire lot probably gone by 2035.

With over 350 aircraft delivered between 2007 and 2013, would that not be one of the youngest fleet retirements ever?


User currently offlineAWACSooner From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 1979 posts, RR: 1
Reply 54, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 20386 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 14):
Cancel the program and you still have the same problem and less time to solve it.

No...here's what needs to happen.
CANCEL this program, and then the DOD needs to go to ALL the manufacturers and their respective subsidiaries and say, "You pitch us the plane, we'll cover the R/D costs that you initially tell us...if it goes over, then it's on you!" No more of this endless money pit crap that seems to be plaguing the defense industry.
How many good airmen/soldiers/sailors/marines have had their jobs cut because of these cost overruns?


User currently offlineFlighty From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 8769 posts, RR: 3
Reply 55, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 20349 times:

Quoting AWACSooner (Reply 54):
CANCEL this program, and then the DOD needs to go to ALL the manufacturers and their respective subsidiaries and say, "You pitch us the plane, we'll cover the R/D costs that you initially tell us...if it goes over, then it's on you!" No more of this endless money pit crap that seems to be plaguing the defense industry.

        

People are slacking and raising kids off this program. They have meetings, thousands of meetings, year after year. My workplace is not so different (it is also government fueled). The delivery date is NEVER unless there is truly a drop-dead date by which you must _deliver_ the product. If that never happens, people merrily "work" for decade after decade. The money never runs dry --- project does not end. Ever. Unless one man or woman makes it end and makes the delivery happen.

In my experience, groups of over ~100 people can't cooperate. Ideally they should be in 1 to 2 buildings. If they are in 8 different cities, forget it. If there are 15,000 people designing a fighter, forget it. It isn't possible.

They should fire 90% of the F-35 staff and cut the budget by 85%. I bet it would get done faster and better. That's a real bet.


User currently offlineSSTeve From United States of America, joined Dec 2011, 733 posts, RR: 2
Reply 56, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 20347 times:

Quoting AWACSooner (Reply 54):
CANCEL this program, and then the DOD needs to go to ALL the manufacturers and their respective subsidiaries and say, "You pitch us the plane,

That's a solid sunk cost argument. Consider the program cancelled. Consider all the money already spent as gone, but consider what we have for it free. Now bid us a program for the planes that we want. Is the F-35 the cheapest option? Yes? Than let's proceed.


User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15833 posts, RR: 27
Reply 57, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 20345 times:

Quoting Revelation (Reply 47):
I guess you are presuming all designs, including this "fantasy" (your words) will converge rather than diverge especially given infinite money.

The F-35 will converge to a fine aircraft that will be a good successor to the F-16 and work for the Navy and our allies. It won't be the world beater the JSF promised to be.

Quoting moo (Reply 51):
You aren't seriously suggesting that the USN are buying aircraft today (MYP III - 2011 to 2013 delivery), with the intention of withdrawing them from service in just 12 or 13 years time? Including Growlers?

Navy planes just don't last. They get absolutely pounded on a regular basis.

Quoting AWACSooner (Reply 54):
CANCEL this program, and then the DOD needs to go to ALL the manufacturers and their respective subsidiaries and say, "You pitch us the plane, we'll cover the R/D costs that you initially tell us...if it goes over, then it's on you!" No more of this endless money pit crap that seems to be plaguing the defense industry

You do that and you'll hear crickets. Or rather a sales pitch for the F-16, F-15, and F-18. No business is dumb enough to develop something like the F-35 on their own dime or a fixed price contract. And when they all say no, what is the government going to do?

Quoting AWACSooner (Reply 54):
How many good airmen/soldiers/sailors/marines have had their jobs cut because of these cost overruns?

How many good airmen/soldiers/sailors/marines might die because they have to work with inferior equipment or a manufacturer tries to get some profit from a fixed price contract?



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1858 posts, RR: 0
Reply 58, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days 1 hour ago) and read 20230 times:

Quoting Ozair (Reply 52):
That is not an accurate statement. The RFPs for the ATF program were released in 1985, three years before either the F-117 or the B-2 were formally acknowledged to the public, 2 years after the F-117 reached IOC and 4 years before the B-2 flew for the first time. Stealth for the ATF was in its infancy and given that the F-117 and the B-2 were deeply buried black programs for the USAF did not influence the stealth coatings for the ATF.

Indeed, and there has been a lot of lessons learned in regards to stealth technology. Curing the stealth coating into the skin instead of applying it afterwords is one key lesson learned. Having tighter fitting panels and more access panels is another. A lot of the engineers that have worked on designing the stealth coatings for F-35 have spent a lot of time maintaining previous stealth fighters, and understand the need for easier maintenance requirements.

Quote:
The legacy stealth programs – which to a lesser or greater degrees had to invent the technology in a stovepipe fashion – were on their own and they all essentially had to reinvent the wheel. In the F-35 program, we are partnered with Northrop Grumman and, as such, our team represents a 100 percent of the operational stealth experience in the industry in the world. My team and the LO sustainment area is comprised of half Lockheed and half Northrop Grumman employees. Most of the Northrop Grumman employees are actually retired Air Force LO maintainers who collectively have experience on all of the previous jets currently flying out there. And those that are retired have brought a tremendous wealth of innovation and experience so that they can improve on the conditions markedly for the maintainers of the F-35. We are not starting from zero. Leveraging this experience is allowing us to build a sustainable LO capability. We’re all about providing the maintainer weekends off by giving them systems that are durable and then easily maintained.
http://www.sldinfo.com/the-f-35-low-...-for-21st-century-combat-aviation/

Quote:
• The DOD corrosion study identifies several areas where the F-35 program has incorporated lessons learned from the F-22’s corrosion problems; examples follow.

• The F-35 program is mitigating corrosion risk associated with conductive gap filler3 and paint by using a gap filler that is less galvanically dissimilar from aluminum, an alternative to the conductive paint, a design with fewer seams that require gap filler, and more representative verification and qualification testing. Many of the F-22’s corrosion problems were linked to problems with gap filler materials and paint.

• The F-35 program made organizational changes that integrated the personnel working within the corrosion materials and processes functional area and the low-observable (i.e., stealth) functional area. In contrast, personnel working within these areas for the F-22 program were “stove-piped.”

• The F-35 drainage design is significantly improved with more, adequately sized drain holes. Drain holes in the F-22 were found to be too small to enable good water drainage.

3 Gap filler is the sealant between exterior panels that is required by low-observable aircraft."
____________________

"“...lessons learned from the F-22 program, the study identifies several important differences between the programs. For example, the F-35 program:
• has several technical performance metrics, such as sortie generation rate, that are indirectly driving actions to improve supportability, while the F-22 program did not;

• has a more robust corrosion design largely due to inclusion of more stringent Navy corrosion qualification tests;

• has a longer service life requirement (30 years vs. 20 years for the F-22); and

• has a Corrosion Prevention Advisory Board where corrosion issues are discussed in detail and both the contractor and the government display a willingness to address these issues.”
http://www.gao.gov/new.items/d11171r.pdf


User currently offlineMax Q From United States of America, joined May 2001, 4780 posts, RR: 19
Reply 59, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 2 days ago) and read 20256 times:

What an incredible bad joke. We are now planning on transitioning to a tiny force of F22's, what 180 or so, out of which
maybe half will be servicable at any one time and they still don't know why Pilots are passing out unexplainably.


I thought these were supposed to replace the magnificent F15, of which there are nearly 700 ?



And we are going to replace the equally superb Mach 2 F16 of which there are over 2000 with this slow Mach 1.6
heavy, unmaneuverable incredibly expensive turkey the F35 that is so compromised to replace too many different Aircraft it truly is a 'jack of all trades master of none'


It appears that Stealth design can be defeated now any way so why bother.



Buy hundreds of F15SE's, same with the F16, keep developing it as they have successfully done for decades and keep a small force of F22's



Maybe one day they can figure out why it is more deadly to our own side than potential enemies and use it against them.



Why the Navy would want this single engine lemon is beyond me. For decades they have stuck with twin jet designs so their Pilots can make it 'back to the boat' when one of them fails, a pretty important priority to me.



Keep upgrading the F18, which admittedly is not the best, perhaps a thrust increase that is available for the F414 would
help and develop a real uncompromised successor (they have already started doing this anyway)



Lastly the Marines, why mess with success ? the Harrier has done a great job with them, keep upgrading it and it will go another two decades, it has proven itself as a rugged, superb Close Air support Aircraft with them.



Why on earth would you need stealth in that Role ? You can be seen pretty well by the mark one eyeball It's almost as ridiculous an idea as the Army's cancelled stealth helicopter,.



Cancel this Lemon.



The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.
User currently offlineRickNRoll From Afghanistan, joined Jan 2012, 899 posts, RR: 0
Reply 60, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 20132 times:

Australia to defer the JSF program for two years.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-05-0...w-due-in-2013/3987042?WT.svl=news1

"The delivery of the RAAF's first 12 Joint Strike Fighters will be delayed by two years"


User currently offlinestealthz From Australia, joined Feb 2005, 5744 posts, RR: 44
Reply 61, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 20061 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Quoting RickNRoll (Reply 60):
"The delivery of the RAAF's first 12 Joint Strike Fighters will be delayed by two years"

My best reading of most reports and the govt releases is that deliveries are being realligned with US deliveries, really a non story, Aust is not so much defering as matching reality with F-35 delivery capability.

What they are doing is taking the funds budgeted for those deliveries and calling it a saving.. leaving the next govt(or the one after) to fund the JSF program.

Some of the other items in todays announcement bear more discussion but should be in a new thread.



If your camera sends text messages, that could explain why your photos are rubbish!
User currently offlineBthebest From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2008, 522 posts, RR: 0
Reply 62, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 20071 times:

Quoting AWACSooner (Reply 54):
CANCEL this program, and then the DOD needs to go to ALL the manufacturers and their respective subsidiaries and say, "You pitch us the plane, we'll cover the R/D costs that you initially tell us...if it goes over, then it's on you!" No more of this endless money pit crap that seems to be plaguing the defense industry.

Thats exactly what the USAF are doing with the KC-46. Quite a good article about how they're managing that program and not taking any crap.

http://www.flightglobal.com/news/art...deliver-on-kc-46-usaf-says-370719/


User currently offlineAngMoh From Singapore, joined Nov 2011, 506 posts, RR: 0
Reply 63, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 19722 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 57):
You do that and you'll hear crickets. Or rather a sales pitch for the F-16, F-15, and F-18. No business is dumb enough to develop something like the F-35 on their own dime or a fixed price contract. And when they all say no, what is the government going to do?

If they all say no, and the government does not budge, are the big defence companies going to shut down?

Boeing has proven with the F15 that they are willing to invest at their own risk to stay in business. The tanker program, although it took 4 tries, finally got the product they wanted at the price they can afford and without the financial risk normally associated with defence programs.

On the other hand, the F35 is a no risk profit machine for anyone working on it. The more it screws up, the longer the profits last!


User currently onlineBMI727 From United States of America, joined Feb 2009, 15833 posts, RR: 27
Reply 64, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 19689 times:

Quoting AngMoh (Reply 64):
If they all say no, and the government does not budge, are the big defence companies going to shut down?

They'll get fat off foreign sales and wait for the government to cave and either buy old planes or fund new ones.

Quoting AngMoh (Reply 64):
Boeing has proven with the F15 that they are willing to invest at their own risk to stay in business.

The risk and cost for the F-15SE and tanker programs is much less than something like the F-35. For the tanker a fixed price deal makes sense. But no company is going to risk developing the JSF with their own money or risk taking a hit on a fixed price contract.



Why do Aerospace Engineering students have to turn things in on time?
User currently offlineFlighty From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 8769 posts, RR: 3
Reply 65, posted (2 years 7 months 3 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 19420 times:

Quoting BMI727 (Reply 64):
But no company is going to risk developing the JSF with their own money or risk taking a hit on a fixed price contract.


Hard to say... with such a large customer funding base, business would cater to it in some fashion. In any case, government is offering this peculiar fully funded development regime. So business is working that angle instead.


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1858 posts, RR: 0
Reply 66, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago) and read 19164 times:

Quoting Bthebest (Reply 62):
Thats exactly what the USAF are doing with the KC-46. Quite a good article about how they're managing that program and not taking any crap.

http://www.flightglobal.com/news/art...0719/

For something that's essentially COTS, you better bet risks and price can be managed better than a completely developmental design that has never existed before.

Quoting stealthz (Reply 61):
My best reading of most reports and the govt releases is that deliveries are being realligned with US deliveries, really a non story, Aust is not so much defering as matching reality with F-35 delivery capability.

What they are doing is taking the funds budgeted for those deliveries and calling it a saving.. leaving the next govt(or the one after) to fund the JSF program.

Some of the other items in todays announcement bear more discussion but should be in a new thread.

Indeed, the Australians are realigning their delivery schedule to match the US deliveries to take full advantage of when F-35 goes into full rate production. The Australian government has made it clear they won't be buying any more Super Hornets as a gap filler; they are committing themselves to F-35.

Quoting Flighty (Reply 65):
Hard to say... with such a large customer funding base, business would cater to it in some fashion. In any case, government is offering this peculiar fully funded development regime. So business is working that angle instead.

However, what sort of businesses will cater to such a risk? If the major defence companies don't want to take on the job and they have the highest concentrations of engineers and developers plus the capital, then who will? The days of developing fighters on the cheap are long gone; today's fighter aircraft are increasingly more sophisticated than previous aircraft.


User currently offlineFlighty From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 8769 posts, RR: 3
Reply 67, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 6 days 4 hours ago) and read 18848 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 66):
However, what sort of businesses will cater to such a risk? If the major defence companies don't want to take on the job and they have the highest concentrations of engineers and developers plus the capital, then who will? The days of developing fighters on the cheap are long gone; today's fighter aircraft are increasingly more sophisticated than previous aircraft.

Maybe I would if I were in that business. In human history, people have developed a lot of technology in their garages and self funding through start-ups. SpaceX, Scaled Composites seem to be able to pay engineers. When a program bloats out to 10x the cost of even the highest technology programs, we can well imagine there are better ways.

These days, people are afraid to bid for government contracts unless they are a super-conglomerate. Mergers have eliminated a whole lot of prior competition. I see that as one of the crises sapping away our effectiveness in a number of industries. But this example is egregious. There is some small pleasure in beating them over the head with this sentiment in online forums. The Emperor has no clothes. People should not blindly worship brand names and long ago legends. This F35 episode proves that type of assumption can be wrong.


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1858 posts, RR: 0
Reply 68, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 6 days ago) and read 18808 times:

Quoting Flighty (Reply 67):
Maybe I would if I were in that business. In human history, people have developed a lot of technology in their garages and self funding through start-ups. SpaceX, Scaled Composites seem to be able to pay engineers. When a program bloats out to 10x the cost of even the highest technology programs, we can well imagine there are better ways.

Take a look at the people backing these companies. Scaled Composites was founded by a subsidiary of Raytheon, a large defense contractor and is currently owned by Northrop Grumman. Both companies obviously have deep pockets. SpaceX was founded by the person who founded PayPal, who is obviously a very wealthy person (Elon Musk has an estimated net worth of $2 billion dollars).


User currently offlinestealthz From Australia, joined Feb 2005, 5744 posts, RR: 44
Reply 69, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 18744 times:
Support Airliners.net - become a First Class Member!

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 66):
The Australian government has made it clear they won't be buying any more Super Hornets as a gap filler; they are committing themselves to F-35.

Not so positive about that, have seen comments from Def Minister Smith in recent months that if carefully scrutinised between the lines could almost be interpreted as... "check your fax machine for the purchase orders!"

Maybe the "gap filler" part is right.. maybe there is a definite role for more Rhino's.. or Growlers at least.



If your camera sends text messages, that could explain why your photos are rubbish!
User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1858 posts, RR: 0
Reply 70, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 18764 times:

Quoting stealthz (Reply 69):
Not so positive about that, have seen comments from Def Minister Smith in recent months that if carefully scrutinised between the lines could almost be interpreted as... "check your fax machine for the purchase orders!"

Maybe the "gap filler" part is right.. maybe there is a definite role for more Rhino's.. or Growlers at least.

Well, the Australian Defence Minister said on May 3rd when they made the decision that they will think their current fleet of Hornets and Super Hornets will suffice in the meantime. In the meantime, they've announced a tender for deep maintenance of their Hornet fleet, meaning they are looking to extend the life of their Hornets to cover the gap.

http://www.aviationweek.com/Blogs.as...a6485b-0cb5-4c51-87dd-5a466a891917

http://www.minister.defence.gov.au/2...for-the-raaf-classic-hornet-fleet/


User currently offlineAngMoh From Singapore, joined Nov 2011, 506 posts, RR: 0
Reply 71, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 18748 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 66):
However, what sort of businesses will cater to such a risk? If the major defence companies don't want to take on the job and they have the highest concentrations of engineers and developers plus the capital, then who will? The days of developing fighters on the cheap are long gone; today's fighter aircraft are increasingly more sophisticated than previous aircraft.

In other words: nobody is willing to take the risk because they don't believe it is achievable in the first place. In that case: kill the program and replace it with one which is achievable.

The problem is not the cost. Everyone knows that new fighter jets are extremely expensive. The problem is that all cost estimates are exceeded by huge amounts all the time.


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1858 posts, RR: 0
Reply 72, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 18221 times:

Quoting AngMoh (Reply 71):

In other words: nobody is willing to take the risk because they don't believe it is achievable in the first place. In that case: kill the program and replace it with one which is achievable.

The problem is not the cost. Everyone knows that new fighter jets are extremely expensive. The problem is that all cost estimates are exceeded by huge amounts all the time.

Unfortunately, if you limit price, you limit capabilities. F-35, like practically every fighter developed previously, has had systems and missions tacked on after the contract award.

With F-35, realistically, it's 3 different aircraft in one, and the testing and development has reflected this. However, the many shared systems between all 3 variants has allowed remarkable synergy and will lead to future cost savings; for example, take weapons testing and integration. With all 3 variants of F-35, when a decision is made to integrate a weapon on F-35, everyone gets the same upgrade, whether or not one chooses to ever carry that weapon, You get the exact same software in every jet. The same for the pilot vehicle interface. It’s identical regardless of variant, regardless of nation. It’s the same. The only difference is in how or what you might take off and land from.

Everyone pays for the software once in this economy of commonality. Because everyone will use all the same weapons, we all get the huge economies of scale rather than having disparate weapons across the fleet. This concept extends to our allies. Normally, a weapon is developed for a specific aircraft or series model. The weapon is then tested for 18 or more months, and it can only be used on the tested aircraft. With the F-35, a development for the A, B, or C is the same from a software point of view, meaning if another nation or service wants to use the same weapon, the manufacturer doesn't have to go back to square one with software development and integration to integrate the weapon on their F-35. It's basically pay now vs pay later.


User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 73, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 17764 times:

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 5):
Quoting Zkpilot (Reply 3):
Canada apparently wants out.

No, they don't.

I hope it does get scrapped so all these stupid F35 threads can stop cluttering this forum.
Quoting KC135TopBoom (Reply 38):
You really do not know what you are talking about. I live in Fort Worth, and am retired from the USAF where I flew the KC-135, and the LM plant that will build the F-35 is just down the street from my home (about 3 miles away) in west Fort Worth. I know a bit more about the program than most, and without going into details (I can't) I will say the program is in trouble, with all of the customers.

Very interesting article in the current display copy (May, so info is recent) of "AIR International" on the F-35. 2 pager by Robert Dorr, repleat with descriptions of the many technical woes listed by Revelation. The biggest one likely being the helmet. Just doesn't work. In the piece he clearly states that Canada is likely to back out, Australia is rethinking, UK, Norway, and Italy have all indicated they will reduce their buys. Recommend it (and the mag generally),

Political creatures are stalking the halls of the Pentagon and Congress suggesting the entire F-35 program be scrapped, but saying nothing publicly. Everybody waiting for Obama to decide on the planes' fate.

So SH's it is looking more likely to be it for us.

Also looks like DND are finally moving on FWSAR. Spartan still likely to be the winner..



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlineDevilfish From Philippines, joined Jan 2006, 4952 posts, RR: 1
Reply 74, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 2 days 10 hours ago) and read 17610 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 73):
So SH's it is looking more likely to be it for us.

Too bad Boeing is not more serious with this.....   

.
http://media.tumblr.com/tumblr_lqe9v0bQUf1qhagdx.jpg



Quoting connies4ever (Reply 73):
Spartan still likely to be the winner.

Has Finmeccanica finally agreed to service the USAF C-27Js if the RCAF were to buy those unwanted frames?

.
http://www.flightglobal.com/blogs/ai...it%20USAF-thumb-560x371-136121.jpg



"Everyone is entitled to my opinion." - Garfield
User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 75, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 17464 times:

Quoting Devilfish (Reply 74):
Has Finmeccanica finally agreed to service the USAF C-27Js if the RCAF were to buy those unwanted frames?

Pretty sure they've dug in on this one. They feel they've been screwed over. So if/when FWSAR goes ahead, they'll be new builds to my mind.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 571 posts, RR: 1
Reply 76, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 17456 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 73):
2 pager by Robert Dorr,
Quoting connies4ever (Reply 73):
So SH's it is looking more likely to be it for us.

I didn't know that Robert influenced Canadian National Defense policy.    Like I said before, regardless of all the whining the Canadian media does, the F-35 won't get cancelled in Canada unless the entire program shuts down.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 73):
The biggest one likely being the helmet. Just doesn't work.

No, it has technical issues, this happens whenever something new is being tried out. Lockheed has until 2016 to figure things out, this isn't a major program cancelling issue.

Oh look, another F-35 thread de-railed into a Canadian discussion. Why am I not surprised.  


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1858 posts, RR: 0
Reply 77, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 2 days 2 hours ago) and read 17411 times:

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 76):
No, it has technical issues, this happens whenever something new is being tried out. Lockheed has until 2016 to figure things out, this isn't a major program cancelling issue.

And the fixes are being finalized on the helmet:
http://www.defensenews.com/article/2...odyssey=tab|topnews|text|FRONTPAGE


User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 78, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 2 days 1 hour ago) and read 17376 times:

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 76):
I didn't know that Robert influenced Canadian National Defense policy
Quoting Powerslide (Reply 76):
Like I said before, regardless of all the whining the Canadian media does, the F-35 won't get cancelled in Canada unless the entire program shuts down.

I never knew you could be so jejeune. The author is presenting an opinion based on discussions with political figures, as well as the well known technical problems. What may be happening is a backroom cabal forming in DC to stop this waste of resources. Dorr never offered an opinion as to whether or not he influences DND, he was offeredrng an opinion on the state of the program, which has some credence. This debate over the F-35 will be decided at the political level, not military.

BTW, Dorr is American, not part of the "whining Canadian media". And he has credentials, probably better than yours.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_F._Dorr You should try doing a little research.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 77):
And the fixes are being finalized on the helmet:

At what fantastic cost ?



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 571 posts, RR: 1
Reply 79, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 2 days ago) and read 17349 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 78):
BTW, Dorr is American, not part of the "whining Canadian media". And he has credentials, probably better than yours.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_F._Dorr You should try doing a little research.

I wasn't saying he was Canadian. I don't see how his credentials pertain to fighter jets, but I guess everyone is an expert on this program. I hope Lockheed and the US government has learned their lesson with making the F35 project public. I'm sure they won't make the same mistake with their 6th gen fighter and develop it privately, without comments from the internet and media peanut gallery.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 78):
At what fantastic cost ?

Does it matter? Technical issues always happen, its unavoidable. You either push the limits of technology and produce something unique or you can just go buy from Russia. One choice will win you wars and the other will sell tickets at Air Shows. What do you want your Air Force and government to do?


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1858 posts, RR: 0
Reply 80, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 2 days ago) and read 17354 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 78):
And the fixes are being finalized on the helmet:

At what fantastic cost ?

You know what, I'm going to have to very blunt here.

When you are pushing the edge in technology or inventing something new, there are bound to be glitches along the way. Your attitude just solved the biggest problem plaguing the software industry. They simply have to debug BEFORE selling!

If the oxygen problem on the F-22 were that simple for example, it would've been found and fixed already. As anyone who writes software (or designs anything) can tell you, it's impossible to make something bug-proof. Bugs creep in because of unforeseen interactions. And unforeseen things are by definition not foreseen, and therefore you don't even know that they're a problem which needs fixing until they occur in use. You can implement some coding/design guidelines which help minimize them (KISS, code reuse, etc), but the only way to prevent them 100% is to never code or design anything. With that attitude, we will all be still be living in caves because we would never invent anything.

As for selling it on a vehicle platform, stuff like this is cutting-edge, never been done before. The military funds it because it likes the idea and wants to take a crack at making it real. The point isn't for the company to make a working prototype on their own dime, then offer to sell it to the military. The point is the financial risk of the idea is so great that no company's accounting department would authorize trying to make it. So the military funds the company to research and build this to see how possible/how difficult it is to make it real.

Your way of thinking is what's killing tech innovation today - MBAs becoming CEOs who insist that their R&D departments justify the cost of every R&D project. The whole point of R&D is you don't know ahead of time what will or won't work. So you try out dozens of ideas, most of which fail. But one gem works, advances the state of the art, and makes you tons of money. For every public success out there, there are literally hundreds, if not thousands of failures along the way, many of the unpublished and forgotten.

When we push the technical edge, there are risks involved. It is easy for outsiders to criticize something they may not fully understand (do you actually understand the technical issue with the helmet beyond 'it doesn't work'?). But once you have a full understanding of the technical issues involved, then you will understand that delays and bugs will occur.

To give you an idea of the level of complexity involved with the F-35's helmet, here's a quick example of what it is designed to do.

As I have mentioned before in past posts, F-35 has 360 degree EO-IR coverage all around the aircraft through EO-DAS. What the helmet is designed to do is to have a sort of free-floating HUD covering the entire front surface of the helmet. You sit in the cockpit and the HUD in the helmet overlays (say) target aircraft with a circle around them. The pilot turns his head, the HUD in the helmet tracks his movement, and moves the circles on the HUD to keep them centered on the actual positions of the aircraft in the sky.

The EO-DAS system is designed to cover blind spots, primarily below the aircraft, and it sends the image feed to the helmet. That is, when the pilot looks down at his feet, he does not see just his feet and the floor of the cockpit. The helmet's HUD overlays an image from the down-looking camera so he can actually see what's beneath the aircraft - right through the floor.

The idea is to give the pilot total visibility around the plane, and complete situational awareness of everything the plane is tracking. Now, just think of the real world applications of this: F-35 pilot can target and shoot at a enemy fighter sitting underneath and slightly behind, where a older fighter with a helmet mounted sight would never see or target the very same fighter hiding there. That's a major technical and tactical advantage a F-35 pilot would have over his/her counterpart flying, say a F-16 with JHMCS that is simply, can't be measured.

[Edited 2012-05-09 21:54:30]

User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 81, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 21 hours ago) and read 17316 times:

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 79):
I hope Lockheed and the US government has learned their lesson with making the F35 project public. I'm sure they won't make the same mistake with their 6th gen fighter and develop it privately, without comments from the internet and media peanut gallery.

Any 6th gen a/c will be unmanned, bet on it, and development will not start before 2030. Which would, given the fiasco that the F-35 is, indicate a 2060 IOC.

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 79):
I hope Lockheed and the US government has learned their lesson with making the F35 project public. I'm sure they won't make the same mistake with their 6th gen fighter and develop it privately, without comments from the internet and media peanut gallery.

It has to be public because it's too frickin' big to hide. It is literally the elephant in the room.

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 79):
Quoting connies4ever (Reply 78):
At what fantastic cost ?

Does it matter?

I can't believe you wrote that.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 80):
Your attitude just solved the biggest problem plaguing the software industry. They simply have to debug BEFORE selling!

Insofar as possible. And its' called verification and validation (V&V). I know because that's what I've been doing for the past twenty years.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 80):
If the oxygen problem on the F-22 were that simple for example, it would've been found and fixed already. As anyone who writes software (or designs anything) can tell you, it's impossible to make something bug-proof.

Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. But there are algorithms out there that allow software developers to estimate how many bugs may lurk in a given system. Again, I know because that's what I've been doing. One of my major tasks was to verify an application with 350,000 lines of code, split over about 1,000 procedures. Did it, using a combination of state of the art tools and good old brute force (source code review) took 4 years, found 2 defects. Neither of which had a safety implication. Then I moved on to validation.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 80):
If the oxygen problem on the F-22 were that simple for example, it would've been found and fixed already. As anyone who writes software (or designs anything) can tell you, it's impossible to make something bug-proof.

And I see that's now extended to maintenance personnel (the hypoxia). As for software a) once you've completed verification (did we make it right) you then go to b) validation (did we make the right thing) : does it perform acceptably over the range of conditions specified in your software requirements specification (hopefully the F-35 has one) which in turn is derived from your statement of the problem, which is the starting point of your design and development effort.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 80):
Bugs creep in because of unforeseen interactions. And unforeseen things are by definition not foreseen, and therefore you don't even know that they're a problem which needs fixing until they occur in use. You can implement some coding/design guidelines which help minimize them (KISS, code reuse, etc), but the only way to prevent them 100% is to never code or design anything. With that attitude, we will all be still be living in caves because we would never invent anything

Interfaces between procedures have to designed and tested, otherwise you're wasting effort and resources. You don't implement some coding and design guidelines, you put in a lot of effort to specify them all. Deviations from the guidelines have to be discussed and approved by the program manager.

If that's your attitude towards software design and development, I wouldn't let you in my shop.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 80):
Your way of thinking is what's killing tech innovation today - MBAs becoming CEOs who insist that their R&D departments justify the cost of every R&D project. The whole point of R&D is you don't know ahead of time what will or won't work. So you try out dozens of ideas, most of which fail. But one gem works, advances the state of the art, and makes you tons of money. For every public success out there, there are literally hundreds, if not thousands of failures along the way, many of the unpublished and forgotten.


No, my way of thinking is what helps ensure CANDU reactors operate safely, because all the reports I sign off on go to the Safety Commission and backstop the operating licenses of the various nuclear utilities. We're not messing around with a mere airplane, we're making recommendations that can have a direct effect on the health and welfare of millions of Canadians. I've also been involved the past three years in designing a new information display system for the control room - which is real-time, in case you don't get that.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 80):
As I have mentioned before in past posts, F-35 has 360 degree EO-IR coverage all around the aircraft through EO-DAS. What the helmet is designed to do is to have a sort of free-floating HUD covering the entire front surface of the helmet
Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 80):
The idea is to give the pilot total visibility around the plane, and complete situational awareness of everything the plane is tracking.


I've been very clear for some time on what the helmet is for.

Now, excuse me for being "blunt".  Wow!



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 571 posts, RR: 1
Reply 82, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 17082 times:

Enough of the pointless drivel.

Back on topic, program update as of the 8th.

http://www.lockheedmartin.com/us/new...508ae_f-35_update-flight-test.html

Quote:
The F-35 program has accomplished many flight test, production and training milestones since Jan. 1:
On Jan. 17, demonstrating the ongoing maturation of the F-35 integrated sensor suite, AF-3, an F-35A conventional takeoff and landing (CTOL) test jet, completed the first low Distributed Aperture System (DAS) approach.

On Jan. 18, the first night flight in the history of the F-35 program was completed at Edwards AFB, Calif.
On Feb. 16, at Edwards AFB, Calif., AF-1, an F-35A CTOL test jet, flew the first external weapons test mission in F-35 program history.
On March 6, the 33d Fighter Wing at Eglin AFB, Fla., flew its first local F-35 Lightning II sortie, marking a major milestone.
On March 22, AF-4, an F-35A CTOL jet, completed the first night refueling mission when it successfully connected to an Air Force KC-135 tanker and received fuel through the F-35’s boom receptacle.
On March 28, BF-4, an F-35B short takeoff/vertical landing (STOVL) test jet based at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md., completed the first F-35 flight with two unarmed air intercept missiles known as AIM-120 Instrumentation Measurement Vehicles (IMVs). The IMVs are used to measure environmental influences such as temperature, vibration and acoustics of the aircraft on the weapon to ensure they do not impact the weapon’s ability to be carried and employed by the aircraft.
On April 1, the first F-35 Lightning II for the Netherlands rolled out of the F-35 production facility. The Netherlands will use this CTOL jet, known as AN-1, for training and operational tests for pilots and maintainers.
On April 5, the program completed in-flight refueling of an F-35B STOVL while configured with external weapons at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md. The mission tested the flying qualities of the aircraft while maneuvering with external weapons.
On April 10, two F-35A CTOLs from the 33d Fighter Wing assigned to Eglin AFB, Fla., completed the unit’s first formation flight. The mission was part of a continuing process to validate pilot syllabus objectives in preparation for future training.
On April 11, an F-35A CTOL from the 33d Fighter Wing assigned to Eglin, AFB, Fla., completed the unit’s first air-to-air refueling mission with a KC-135R Stratotanker.
On April 13, BK-1, the United Kingdom's first F-35 Lightning II production aircraft, flew its inaugural flight. The U.K. Ministry of Defence will use this short takeoff/vertical landing jet for training and operational tests at Eglin AFB, Fla., beginning later this year.
On April 18, for the first time, two F-35C Lightning II carrier variant test aircraft launched together and conducted formation flying at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md. The mission tested flying qualities of the aircraft while taking off, landing and flying in formation for more than one hour.
On April 21, the program completed the first in-flight refueling of F-35A CTOL aircraft while configured with external weapons at Edwards AFB, Calif. The two-hour mission tested the flying qualities of the aircraft while maneuvering with external weapons.
Cumulative flight test activity totals for 2012 through April 30 are provided below:
F-35A CTOL jets have flown 164 times.
F-35B STOVL aircraft have completed 122 flights, 114 of which began with a short takeoff. Additionally, F-35B STOVL aircraft have conducted 49 vertical landings.
F-35C carrier variant (CV) jets have flown 87 times.
Cumulative flight test activity totals for the duration of the program through April 30 are provided below:
F-35A CTOL jets have flown 811 times.
F-35B STOVL aircraft have completed 711 flights, 533 of which began with a short takeoff. F-35B STOVL aircraft have also conducted 328 vertical landings.
F-35C CV jets have flown 279 times.
Since December 2006, F-35s have flown 2,066 times and accrued more than 3,000 cumulative flight hours. This total includes 91 flights from the original test aircraft, AA-1; 1,801 SDD test flights; and 174 production-model flights. For video highlights of the F-35 program, click here.


Sure doesn't look like a program on the verge of being cancelled.   


User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 83, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 17043 times:

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 82):
Enough of the pointless drivel.

Software design for complex systems is not "pointless drivel", unlike your statement.

The beast still has only achieved a small fraction of the required test points. The helmet remains a big problem as of last month. Did you actually read the Dorr article ? To paraphrase Jack Nicholson, seems like "you can't handle the truth".

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 82):
Sure doesn't look like a program on the verge of being cancelled.

Again, buy a copy of AIR International and read the article. It might actually show you that many others want to kill this thing. People in positions of influence.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 571 posts, RR: 1
Reply 84, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 17035 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 83):
Again, buy a copy of AIR International and read the article. It might actually show you that many others want to kill this thing. People in positions of influence.

There are monthly articles on the F35 and how troubled the program is, etc, etc. Even with known defense cuts the F-35 hasn't even had any total numbers cut, much less had the entire program threatened. The likelihood of a program cancellation at this stage is approximately zero. The time to have pursued a somewhat different course with regards to F-35 development was much, much earlier.


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1858 posts, RR: 0
Reply 85, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day ago) and read 17018 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 83):
Again, buy a copy of AIR International and read the article. It might actually show you that many others want to kill this thing. People in positions of influence.

Funny, the senior brass of the USAF and USN has re-affirmed support for the F-35:
http://www.af.mil/news/story.asp?id=123301477

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 81):

Insofar as possible. And its' called verification and validation (V&V). I know because that's what I've been doing for the past twenty years.

And we are in that right now. We are verifying and validating the design right now in real world conditions, not just in a lab.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 81):
Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. But there are algorithms out there that allow software developers to estimate how many bugs may lurk in a given system. Again, I know because that's what I've been doing. One of my major tasks was to verify an application with 350,000 lines of code, split over about 1,000 procedures. Did it, using a combination of state of the art tools and good old brute force (source code review) took 4 years, found 2 defects. Neither of which had a safety implication. Then I moved on to validation.

And how many known bugs are with a piece of software, such as Windows, that were discovered post release? Sometimes the only way to find a bug is to let real people work with the system and test it. We've discovered issues with the F-22 in real world conditions. It's not the end of the world, nor is a program a failure.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 81):
And I see that's now extended to maintenance personnel (the hypoxia). As for software a) once you've completed verification (did we make it right) you then go to b) validation (did we make the right thing) : does it perform acceptably over the range of conditions specified in your software requirements specification (hopefully the F-35 has one) which in turn is derived from your statement of the problem, which is the starting point of your design and development effort.

However, sometimes you don't know for certain that you did it right until the real world has a chance to work on it. The real world does not behave like in a lab or in a simulation.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 81):
I've been very clear for some time on what the helmet is for.

Do you even have a full understanding of the technical issues involved or why the F-35's helmet is a major advance over any other helmet right now? It's literally a step beyond what current helmets can do. The ramifications is significant beyond just combat; The F-35B/C with HMDS night vision (with horizon visible as well as carrier from some distance away) will revolutionise night 'pilot flying' carrier landings - to the 'easier' end. Automatic night carrier landings with JPALS will be less stressful also due 'night is day' visibility.

In fact, this article touches a bit on what the F-35's helmet can do:
http://www.sldinfo.com/whitepapers/a...generation-aircraft-are-all-about/

Quote:
Currently, the helmet is working well but with any new technology there are developmental challenges. Mitigation pathways for the issues facing the helmet have been developed and are being implemented. The fact is that the helmet is already in use and the reviews from the pilots are overwhelmingly positive. One pilot went so far as to say, “I could fly the whole mission with a helmet bag over the top of my head and just look through the sensors and fly the airplane safely.”

Another pilot recently stated, “I wouldn’t go back to a fixed HUD (Head-Up Display). It is clear that the potential of the helmet and what it’s going to be able to do for the war fighter is overwhelmingly positive and I would never want to go back.”

Legacy aircraft have fixed HUDs, this is a combiner glass that sits on top of the glare shield onto which symbology is projected. All of that is gone from the F-35. Symbology is now projected on to the helmet’s visor.

The step from a third generation fighter like the F-4 that did not have a HUD to the fourth generation fighter like the F-16, which did, was significant. No pilot would ever go back to not having a HUD.

In the same way, pilots experiencing the legacy HUD to the F-35 approach do not want to go back either.

In the F-35, the helmet gives you a HUD everywhere the pilot looks. The pilot can look straight up, straight down, left, right or even through the airplane’s structure and get all the benefits of a HUD everywhere. It’s a huge extension of technology that provides a significant combat capability. This capability alone will transform how pilots conduct close air support with Joint Tactical Air Controllers on the ground.


User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3864 posts, RR: 27
Reply 86, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 1 day ago) and read 17026 times:
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Quoting Powerslide (Reply 82):
Enough of the pointless drivel.


should apply to 21-25 yr old's who challenge everyone else's credentials while never presenting their own..

This program needs some serious oversight, and it's obvious that the Military is unable to provide that so the media must.. unless you choose to live in a dictatorship. They have enough test planes built, it's time to stop building more. there is probably enough variation between units that no test really ensures later production will meet the same criteria.


User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 571 posts, RR: 1
Reply 87, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 16857 times:

Quoting kanban (Reply 86):
They have enough test planes built, it's time to stop building more.

And drive the price up even more. Great idea.


User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3864 posts, RR: 27
Reply 88, posted (2 years 7 months 2 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 16820 times:
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stopping building hundreds of test only planes before all the bugs are discovered saves far more in rework/repair costs than continued production saves. however since you have no financial stake in the farce, we will continue to see your pointless drivel.

User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 571 posts, RR: 1
Reply 89, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 11 hours ago) and read 16556 times:

Quoting kanban (Reply 88):
stopping building hundreds of test only planes before all the bugs are discovered saves far more in rework/repair costs than continued production saves. however since you have no financial stake in the farce, we will continue to see your pointless drivel.

They stopped building "test only" aircraft months ago.

http://www.lockheedmartin.com/us/new...510ae_f-35bs-ferried-to-eglin.html

Quote:
The 5th Generation multirole fighter jets were delivered to the United States Marine Corps and are now assigned to the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing’s Marine Fighter/Attack Squadron 501 residing with the host 33d Fighter Wing.


User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 90, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 16510 times:

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 89):
They stopped building "test only" aircraft months ago.

But due to the power of "concurrency" they will have to go back and fix all the bugs uncovered during test flying by both test and "production" aircraft. Which will cost more than likely in billions. By the way, does fix" mean neuter ? If so, then I suggest renaming the Lightning II as Gib, which is a castrated tomcat.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3864 posts, RR: 27
Reply 91, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 8 hours ago) and read 16474 times:
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Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 85):
We are verifying and validating the design right now


Who are these nameless "we"... surely neither of you fan boys work for LM or the US military...

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 90):
But due to the power of "concurrency" they will have to go back and fix all the bugs uncovered during test flying by both test and "production" aircraft


That's the point I was making, but forgetting the audience, I left it out since normal logic would have arrived there. (plus I've said it before.


User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 571 posts, RR: 1
Reply 92, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 16425 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 90):
But due to the power of "concurrency" they will have to go back and fix all the bugs uncovered during test flying by both test and "production" aircraft

You mean do what's been done with every single fighter aircraft ever produced? How dare Lockheed follow SOP's!   

Quoting kanban (Reply 91):
Who are these nameless "we"...

You know, the people who's job it is to build these things. In the end, the opinions of people here on these forums don't matter in the grand scheme of things, no matter how many "good" idea's you or I think we have.

[Edited 2012-05-12 16:17:36]

User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 93, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 16184 times:

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 92):
You mean do what's been done with every single fighter aircraft ever produced?

There's a difference between test flying - exploring the flight envelope, and flying to achieve IOC. Production aircraft are often, but not always, quite different than test aircraft.

The F-102 being a good example. The prototype YF-102s could not get past M=1 despite having (theoretically) bags of power. It was transsonic drag rise. NACA and Convair studied the problem and the upshot was a major redesign of the fuselage, after which production F-102s performed like champs, for the day. But the USAF had to eat something 1.5 years in IOC.

But Convair did not have to go back and change something like 400 "production" aircraft, which seems to be the case with the "I can do everything" fighter. In fact, had they built and deployed 400 equivalent YF-102s, these would have had to be scrapped.

BTW, this not from Wikipedia, from my uncle (RCAF). He actually flew the F-102 (and its'' successor the F-106) as an exchange officer. Who thinks the F-35 is a terrible idea and favours the SH.

Concurrency is not a sound policy. Prototype, wring out the problems, then go to production status. Yes, there will likely be niggling problems down the road, but not fundamental ones.

[Edited 2012-05-13 11:52:04]


Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlineTheCol From Canada, joined Jan 2007, 2039 posts, RR: 6
Reply 94, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 16053 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 73):
In the piece he clearly states that Canada is likely to back out

Depends on the outcome of the next election. The Harper government has no intention of backing out, regardless of the political mudslinging over the projected costs.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 73):
So SH's it is looking more likely to be it for us.

Unlikely. If the government goes ahead with a proper procurement project, the F-18E/F will be going up against the F-35, F-15SE, Eurofighter, and Rafale. Chances are the F-18E/F will fall short.



No matter how random things may appear, there's always a plan.
User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 95, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 18 hours ago) and read 15954 times:

Quoting TheCol (Reply 94):
Quoting connies4ever (Reply 73):
So SH's it is looking more likely to be it for us.

Unlikely. If the government goes ahead with a proper procurement project, the F-18E/F will be going up against the F-35, F-15SE, Eurofighter, and Rafale. Chances are the F-18E/F will fall short.

In the 1970s the CF wanted the F-4 Phantom. Government of the day decided we couldn't afford it so the CF got the F-5,much less capability. You get the military you can afford, not necessarily what the military wants. This is not yet a closed book. At the scale of the projected costs (even if anyone actually knows what this thing will cost) it is always a political decision, not a military one.

I would also note the Aussies are looking at, if not eliminating the F-35 altogether, at a minimum reducing the purchase and acquiring more SH's.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlineBigJKU From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 883 posts, RR: 11
Reply 96, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 14 hours ago) and read 15857 times:

I think any talk of the F-35 program being in serious danger is quite silly. I can see a few marginal buyers like Canada backing out of the deal on the basis that they don't intend to use their aircraft in a strike capacity at any time in the future. For them a simple missile carrier probably meets their NORAD commitments and is simply good enough. That being said...

Quoting TheCol (Reply 94):
Unlikely. If the government goes ahead with a proper procurement project, the F-18E/F will be going up against the F-35, F-15SE, Eurofighter, and Rafale. Chances are the F-18E/F will fall short.

I chuckle at the idea of Canada opting for something other than the F-35 and it not being the F-18E/F. The F-15SE is not even flying. There is simply no way Canada is going to be the original buyer of a piece of equipment that has yet to take to the sky.

The Eurofighter is not really any cheaper than the F-35 and as of yet does not have advanced radar. They are developing it but it will undoubtedly add to the cost of the aircraft. Rafale is pretty much in the same boat. It might be a bit cheaper but it has almost nothing in common with what maintainers have been learning for years on F-18's.

If you are not buying the F-35 then the only thing that really makes any sense is the F-18.

Quoting kanban (Reply 88):
stopping building hundreds of test only planes before all the bugs are discovered saves far more in rework/repair costs than continued production saves. however since you have no financial stake in the farce, we will continue to see your pointless drivel.

And this criticism is very unfair. One ought to take a look at what early built F-16 and even early build Eurofighters could do. Frankly it is pretty standard stuff and more than that taking the software upgrades is something the F-35 is designed to do better than older aircraft. I have no doubt that a number of the current production aircraft will never meet their performance standards but taking a production line from making prototypes to making full on combat ready variants is just something very few programs do.


User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3864 posts, RR: 27
Reply 97, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 13 hours ago) and read 15804 times:
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Quoting BigJKU (Reply 96):
And this criticism is very unfair. One ought to take a look at what early built F-16 and even early build Eurofighters could do.


The point is today we do not have the resources to continue bad policy of the past. When one looks at the list of structural problems and realize the fix is not cheap, a pause to let the engineers and component manufacturing catch up is a major cost savings. Then when it is noted they are only 22% into the flight test program, one wonders what is yet to be found. Surely 70 some odd flying examples is enough to complete the tests and find out.

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 89):
http://www.lockheedmartin.com/us/new...510ae_f-35bs-ferried-to-eglin.html

Quote:
The 5th Generation multirole fighter jets were delivered to the United States Marine Corps and are now assigned to the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing’s Marine Fighter/Attack Squadron 501 residing with the host 33d Fighter Wing.



I find it interesting that we're ferrying planes out as usable when testing is so far behind, the software is years late, the helmet doesn't work, etc. At the current rate testing will continue for another 10 years or so. So these deliveries are no more than clearing the LM tarmac so the can roll out more incomplete planes.


User currently offlineBigJKU From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 883 posts, RR: 11
Reply 98, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 15789 times:

Quoting kanban (Reply 97):
The point is today we do not have the resources to continue bad policy of the past. When one looks at the list of structural problems and realize the fix is not cheap, a pause to let the engineers and component manufacturing catch up is a major cost savings. Then when it is noted they are only 22% into the flight test program, one wonders what is yet to be found. Surely 70 some odd flying examples is enough to complete the tests and find out.

Is it really a cost savings? What are you going to do with all the assembly line workers? Fire them and then rehire new people and retrain them later? That does not seem like a recipe for cost savings to me. I think there is a middle ground between overwhelming pessimism and fan boy optimism here.

I was not an F-35 fan when the concept was announced but it is what everyone selected to replace a bunch of platforms. It has to be made to work because there really are no other options.

Quoting kanban (Reply 97):
I find it interesting that we're ferrying planes out as usable when testing is so far behind, the software is years late, the helmet doesn't work, etc. At the current rate testing will continue for another 10 years or so. So these deliveries are no more than clearing the LM tarmac so the can roll out more incomplete planes.

10-years is way over-estimating things and again it really depends on how we look at things. If we wanted to declare IOC at being able to fly around and pop off a few Air to Air Missiles I would guess the program could get there in fairly short order. Even stating that you are blowing a bit of smoke here.

The program has 59,000 test points of which 15,000 were achieved as of about a week ago. By all reports the test program is picking up the pace but in the first four months of the year they were knocking off about 700 points a month. If they go no faster over the next couple years that puts them at 5 years or so from fully checked out in every respect that a modern fighter can be. Keep in mind Eurofighter has been in service now for 9 years and is just now getting ready to do proper air to ground operations.

10 years from now is basically stating that the check out phase of F-35 is going to occur at half the rate it did in the first 4 months of this year when it really should do nothing but speed up.

Again, if I could go back 10-15 years and make them do things differently I think I would. But at this point doing things like offloading your skilled workforce that will be building the things and stopping production is just not the right call. You can't just stop a supply chain and then restart it later. Things don't work like that in the real world.


User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 99, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 15781 times:

Quoting BigJKU (Reply 96):
There is simply no way Canada is going to be the original buyer of a piece of equipment that has yet to take to the sky.

I agree. Arrow was the last time we attempted this and it almost ate the entire procurement budget of the day. And this is really the Achilles heel of the F-35, particularly in light of the Pentagon budget cuts. Perhaps F-35 can be supported, but at the cost of future ISR capability, tankers, Navy requirements, something to replace A-10, unless the USAF is willing to sacrifice CAS, and so on.

Quoting BigJKU (Reply 96):
The Eurofighter is not really any cheaper than the F-35 and as of yet does not have advanced radar. They are developing it but it will undoubtedly add to the cost of the aircraft. Rafale is pretty much in the same boat. It might be a bit cheaper but it has almost nothing in common with what maintainers have been learning for years on F-18's.

Latest production lots of both will have AESA.

Quoting BigJKU (Reply 96):
And this criticism is very unfair. One ought to take a look at what early built F-16 and even early build Eurofighters could do.

I don't think it's unfair. Early lots of F-16 delivered an aircraft that met the then requirements. Later Blocks more or less transformed what was then a light-weight fighter into something much more capable. But there was no going back to actually fix and/or modify early lots.

Quoting BigJKU (Reply 98):
I was not an F-35 fan when the concept was announced but it is what everyone selected to replace a bunch of platforms. It has to be made to work because there really are no other options.

"Simply has to work" ? At what, $1.5T ? When the US treasury is largely bare ? This sounds a lot like "Too big to fail". And we all know where that took the US.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlineBigJKU From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 883 posts, RR: 11
Reply 100, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 12 hours ago) and read 15780 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 99):
Latest production lots of both will have AESA.

Yes, but at assuredly an increased cost for anyone purchasing the aircraft. You won't be saving much money buying Eurofighter vs buying F-35 in a couple of years. The point was that it had not really been included in the cost of those already marketed. It is another increase on an already expensive platform itself.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 99):
I don't think it's unfair. Early lots of F-16 delivered an aircraft that met the then requirements. Later Blocks more or less transformed what was then a light-weight fighter into something much more capable. But there was no going back to actually fix and/or modify early lots.

Yes but you can't consider the F-35 a F-16 A replacement in anyway because of that. What the Air Force (and Navy) are basically saying is that they don't want anything with the relatively stripped down capabilities of the F-16A and F-18A in service at all. I think the Eurofighter is a very apt comparison really to trying to get to a true modern role aircraft.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 99):

"Simply has to work" ? At what, $1.5T ? When the US treasury is largely bare ? This sounds a lot like "Too big to fail". And we all know where that took the US.

It will be made to work because the only other choice is to drastically draw down the USAF really. Or you can buy old equipment at not all that much savings really. The R&D cost is sunk and gone. It won't be coming back so crying about it does no one any good. You have to buy some sort of fighter for the USAF and USN. Something new would be even more expensive. Buying new build F-18's or F-16's or F-15's really won't be all that much cheaper, particularly when you add in the additional standoff weapons, jamming support and other things that will be necessary to make it work.

The $1.5 trillion figure is silly anyway. While this may be technically true it really is not a useful way to examine the cost of a force. You need to do life-cycle projections to help you budget. I am not disputing that. But when you are quoting the "cost" of the aircraft we need to be honest. The "cost" in that sense is either the cost increase of supporting the new equipment over what you currently have OR the cost compared to an alternative. The only way you can call $1.5 trillion the "cost" is if your alternative is that the Air Force effectively not exist.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 99):
Perhaps F-35 can be supported, but at the cost of future ISR capability, tankers, Navy requirements, something to replace A-10, unless the USAF is willing to sacrifice CAS, and so on.

Actually the Obama administration made it pretty clear in their strategic view that the USAF and the Navy are going to benefit at the expense of the Army. I think you will see a smaller Air Force than we have in the past but it will be much more capable. I think the Navy and Air Force are on the cusp of a huge leap in priority and capability over the next decade or so and it is going to come at the expense of the Army, which makes good strategic sense.


User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3864 posts, RR: 27
Reply 101, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 11 hours ago) and read 15761 times:
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Quoting BigJKU (Reply 98):
Is it really a cost savings? What are you going to do with all the assembly line workers? Fire them and then rehire new people and retrain them later? That does not seem like a recipe for cost savings to me. I think there is a middle ground between overwhelming pessimism and fan boy optimism here.


This is one of those heart wrenching ploys used all to frequently by industry .. "please allow us to keep producing crap, smog, hazardous waste because if we don't you'll put all these poor people out of work." LM has enough rework to keep the force busy while they sort out their problems! Anyone who has studied manufacturing concepts knows that rework and multiple handling cost company's massively in labor, overhead, materials, and profit. (Oh wait, the government has guaranteed a profit through their mis-management)

As far as 10 years vs 5 more years of testing... it was sarcasm. However I disagree with the fankids that we should ramp up to full production even if it doubles the current cost because of rework and early retirement.


User currently offlineTheCol From Canada, joined Jan 2007, 2039 posts, RR: 6
Reply 102, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 15743 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 95):

Again, that depends heavily on who wins the next election.

Quoting BigJKU (Reply 96):
If you are not buying the F-35 then the only thing that really makes any sense is the F-18.

No it doesn't make any sense. When Canada buys hardware, it has to be good for 25+ years. The F-18E/F will be obsolete before then. It would be extremely difficult to meet our NATO commitments when our avionics aren't mission compatible. It would be like Kosovo all over again, except they won't even want us to show up.

Quoting BigJKU (Reply 96):
The F-15SE is not even flying. There is simply no way Canada is going to be the original buyer of a piece of equipment that has yet to take to the sky.

The F-15SE isn't a totally new bird, it's just an upgrade of the original design. What do we have to lose at this point? Can't get any worse than the F-35 gong show. It would also be less costly to get Boeing to install our preferred kit now, rather than continuously change it out like we did with the F-18's. It seems to be a habit of ours to buy kit, just so we can pull out what is already installed and change the equipment to our specs. Just look at the cost overruns with every major procurement project since the 70's. If the government is smart, they'll put a stop to that trend and actually save some money for a change.



No matter how random things may appear, there's always a plan.
User currently offlineBigJKU From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 883 posts, RR: 11
Reply 103, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 15738 times:

Quoting TheCol (Reply 102):
No it doesn't make any sense. When Canada buys hardware, it has to be good for 25+ years. The F-18E/F will be obsolete before then. It would be extremely difficult to meet our NATO commitments when our avionics aren't mission compatible. It would be like Kosovo all over again, except they won't even want us to show up.

Umm...from a practical standpoint what can the any of your other platforms do that the F-18E can't do other than possibly the F-15SE which does not exist? The Rafael and Eurofighter are pretty comparable in most missions really to the F-18E.


User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 104, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 15725 times:

Quoting BigJKU (Reply 100):
Yes but you can't consider the F-35 a F-16 A replacement in anyway because of that

Didn't say that, I said the initial build of the F-16 met then then requirement for a light-weifht fighter. Nothing more.

Quoting BigJKU (Reply 100):
It will be made to work because the only other choice is to drastically draw down the USAF really.

Which I think will happen, there will be some capability loss.

Quoting kanban (Reply 101):
LM has enough rework

Yes. Reworking F-35s !!!

Quoting TheCol (Reply 102):
Again, that depends heavily on who wins the next election.

Don't doubt that it will be Harper and his minions. But with I think a smaller majority. Harper will likely step down sometime in the next term.

Quoting TheCol (Reply 102):
When Canada buys hardware, it has to be good for 25+ years. The F-18E/F will be obsolete before then

You could argue that the F-18 was obsolete when we bought it. The Voodoos certainly were.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlinemffoda From United States of America, joined Apr 2010, 1113 posts, RR: 0
Reply 105, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 15697 times:

Maybe we should rename this thread to: "Talk Of Canadian F-35 Being Scrapped!"   

While that is a possibility? The other is unlikely...



harder than woodpecker lips...
User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 106, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 15699 times:

Quoting mffoda (Reply 105):
Maybe we should rename this thread to: "Talk Of Canadian F-35 Being Scrapped!"

While that is a possibility? The other is unlikely...

Perhaps that would be a good title for a new thread. Oz too.

As for the whole program, it's election year so I don't think anything drastic will occur, lest the Mad Hatters, er, Tea Partiers, get more fodder for their cannon. Although it may get slowed down even more, particularly if Congress can't pass a budget (again). When (if) Obama is re-elected, it's possible there could be a change.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlineDevilfish From Philippines, joined Jan 2006, 4952 posts, RR: 1
Reply 107, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 3 hours ago) and read 15638 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 106):
it's possible there could be a change.

Here is a change.....

http://www.flightglobal.com/news/art...5-officials-swap-positions-371877/

Quote:
"Two senior US Air Force officials leading the service's largest programmes are swapping positions, mystifying analysts and retired flag-officers.

Maj Gen Christopher Bogdan, the current programme executive officer for the Boeing KC-46, is to become the deputy director of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) programme, the US Department of Defense (DoD) announced on 11 May.

On the same day, the DoD announced that the current deputy director of the JSF programme, Maj Gen John Thompson, will take over Bogdan's role as KC-46 programme executive officer."



And it's not even election time.  



"Everyone is entitled to my opinion." - Garfield
User currently offlineOroka From Canada, joined Dec 2006, 913 posts, RR: 0
Reply 108, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 4 days 2 hours ago) and read 15615 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 104):
You could argue that the F-18 was obsolete when we bought it. The Voodoos certainly were.

Second hand voodoos... sure, but how do you figure the hornets were obsolete when we bought them? It took at least 5 years from initial delivery in 1982 to when the C/D model came out in 87. Then it only took 14 years to start thinking about bringing them up to C/D standards.

Okay, maybe the last few delivered in 87-88 were obsolete.


  


User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 109, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 15471 times:

Quoting Devilfish (Reply 107):
Here is a change.....

http://www.flightglobal.com/news/art...5-officials-swap-positions-371877/

Saw that on the Flightglobal site this AM. Interesting comment that retired flag officers can't think of a reason for the change. The USAF official line that this is a "routine" change I think is a little disingenuous. Someone perhaps being moved out of a position that was too challenging ? One can't be sure.

This is also interesting:
http://www.flightglobal.com/news/art...stion-usns-f-35-commitment-371442/

Interesting in that a) it questions the USN's commitment to the F-35C, and b) also raises the issue of the DoD being able to afford all it wants given the current US fiscal position -- something I've raised repeatedly in several F-35-related threads which certain others have tried to shout down.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlinemoo From Falkland Islands, joined May 2007, 4089 posts, RR: 4
Reply 110, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 15400 times:

Quoting BigJKU (Reply 98):
Keep in mind Eurofighter has been in service now for 9 years and is just now getting ready to do proper air to ground operations.

A few points with this little comment...

"Just now getting ready"? The RAFs FGR4, operational in 2008, has full multirole capability and was dropping LGBs in Libya last year.

Nothing about "getting ready", already done!

"has been in service now for 9 years"? Thats also questionable, as it depends on what particular interpretation of "in service" you mean. For example, the RAF stood up their first F2 squadron in 2006, 4 years after receiving their first F2. Im not sure when Germany, Italy and Spain stood their first Eurofighter squadrons up, but it wasn't nine years ago (its worth noting that the FGR4 is an RAF only mod but Im still willing to count from the first reasonable in service date for all Tranche 1 aircraft).

http://www.airliners.net/photo/UK---...d=df529f7405f3051a17ea16102e37f46a

http://www.airliners.net/photo/UK---...d=df529f7405f3051a17ea16102e37f46a


User currently offlineBigJKU From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 883 posts, RR: 11
Reply 111, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 15352 times:

Quoting moo (Reply 110):
"Just now getting ready"? The RAFs FGR4, operational in 2008, has full multirole capability and was dropping LGBs in Libya last year.

Nothing about "getting ready", already done!

For the RAF only who funded it under a different contract than everyone else. Tranch 2 Aircraft started rolling in 2008 but I don't buy that the RAF force is really ready to drop bombs by itself in combat based on what actually happened in theater.

"Flightglobal understands that the Typhoon's latest combat use of the 454kg (1,000lb) Enhanced Paveway II, along with its debut employment in Libya on 10 April, was enabled by a Tornado GR4 designating its targets using a Rafael Litening III targeting pod. Such co-operative targeting has previously been performed by RAF Blackburn Buccaneers for Tornado GR1s during the 1990-91 Gulf War, and by Dassault Mirage 2000s during the French air force's debut combat use of the Dassault Rafale in Afghanistan."

""We have eight pilots trained in the ground-attack role because that is all we need," said Air Vice Marshal Stephen Hillier, air officer commanding the RAF's 2 Group organisation. However, he added: "If we want to deploy that aircraft on an air-to-surface mission, we can do it." The UK's Typhoon force will achieve full multi-role readiness in 2018, with the bulk of the fleet to remain in use until 2030."

http://www.flightglobal.com/news/art...resh-target-with-help-from-355641/

"A second batch of future enhancements has been submitted during the Berlin Air Show this year. “Phase 2 Enhancement (P2E)” is targeted to be implemented by the end of 2014. It focuses on the introduction of enhanced weapons expected at this time, like enhanced Storm Shadow, Taurus, supersonic delivery of Paveway IV weapons, Brimstone, Small Diameter Bomb, AMRAAM C-5/7, and Meteor. Other improvements of subsystems are also expected, including further enhancement of DASS. Further enhancements are expected for Tranche 3."

http://defense-update.com/products/t/typhoon-eurofighter.htm

So whatever the software or tech might be able to do the Eurofighter still has a long way to go to achieve what will be an IOC for the F-35 which is to deliver bombs on target. There is a long list of weapons the thing is not yet cleared to carry at this point. Let's be honest about it. Right now the thing can drop LGB's in the air to ground role and that is about it so I think it is perfectly fair to say that the Eurofighters air to ground capabilities are still really immature at this point.

This is one of the reasons the F-35 is so ambitious. It is expected to do Air to Air and Air to Ground right out of the gate.

Quoting moo (Reply 110):
"has been in service now for 9 years"? Thats also questionable, as it depends on what particular interpretation of "in service" you mean. For example, the RAF stood up their first F2 squadron in 2006, 4 years after receiving their first F2. Im not sure when Germany, Italy and Spain stood their first Eurofighter squadrons up, but it wasn't nine years ago (its worth noting that the FGR4 is an RAF only mod but Im still willing to count from the first reasonable in service date for all Tranche 1 aircraft).

We can choose whatever dates we want. We don't have a squadron in service date for F-35 yet. The first production Eurofighter was delivered in 2003. It hit IOC in Italy in 2005. Call it 9 years, 7 years or 5 years there is still work to be done on it.


User currently offlinemoo From Falkland Islands, joined May 2007, 4089 posts, RR: 4
Reply 112, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 12 hours ago) and read 15331 times:

Quoting BigJKU (Reply 111):
For the RAF only who funded it under a different contract than everyone else. Tranch 2 Aircraft started rolling in 2008 but I don't buy that the RAF force is really ready to drop bombs by itself in combat based on what actually happened in theater.

Yup, the first attacks were designated by a Tornado, however the Typhoon soon adjusted to self-designation and carried out the majority of its strikes on its own.

Quote:

On Apr 12, an XI Sqn Typhoon on patrol with a Tornado GR4, dropped two Enhanced Paveway 2 1000lb GPS guided bombs on two Libyan pro-regime main battle tanks and in doing so completed the first ever Typhoon weapons release ‘in anger’. The Sqn continued trail blazing with some other notable Typhoon firsts. These included the first ever Typhoon self-designated laser attack using the LITENING 3 laser designation pod in combat and also the first ever mixed Typhoon/GR4 and Typhoon only air interdiction missions. Countless targets have been struck by Typhoon including numerous types of vehicles and armour, headquarters buildings, and the guard towers of Col Gaddafi’s compound in central Tripoli (and so far they’ve all been successful!).
http://www.onetooneonline.co.uk/sqnn...eads-the-typhoon-storm-over-libya/

Also, it doesn't matter whether or not the RAF funded it separate, its a Eurofighter with a full ground attack capability...


User currently offlineBigJKU From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 883 posts, RR: 11
Reply 113, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 15318 times:

Quoting moo (Reply 112):
Also, it doesn't matter whether or not the RAF funded it separate, its a Eurofighter with a full ground attack capability...

It is a EF that can drop LGB's. Does it have any standoff weapon capability yet? Can it fire AGM's yet? Can it fire ARM's yet? There is a lot more integration to be done for those weapons as the commander of them said correctly that it would be 2018 for a fuller capability to be deployed. Again this loses the larger point. The EF as delivered did not even have the LGB capability. It was a less ambitious delivery target in that regard than the F-35 is.

The F-35 will start from day 1 of IOC with LGB capability, JDAM capability and JSOW capability for air to ground work. It will have AMRAAM, AIM-9X and ASRAAM out of the box as well. I believe the F-35A will have SDB capability from the outset as well but I am not sure on that anymore. That is a lot more out of the box options for the F-35 and the follow on stuff is scheduled to roll out more rapidly by design. This puts a lot of stress on a program (for better or worse).


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1858 posts, RR: 0
Reply 114, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 14897 times:

Quoting Oroka (Reply 108):

Second hand voodoos... sure, but how do you figure the hornets were obsolete when we bought them? It took at least 5 years from initial delivery in 1982 to when the C/D model came out in 87. Then it only took 14 years to start thinking about bringing them up to C/D standards.

Okay, maybe the last few delivered in 87-88 were obsolete.

The F/A-18 had a very difficult gestation during development. You must be too young to remember when the F/A-18A/B was being developed. It was highly controversial for its development overruns, its excessive unit costs and its non-performance relative to requirements (conspicuously, range/ combat radius among others). A 1988 CRS study on concurrency pegged its unit cost at 188 percent above the target -- and it had zero program concurrency. McDD shipped alotta developmental items off the program to C/D development or separate GFE contracts in order to allow the program to remain below its Congressional cap for both NRE and URF. When it got in trouble in flight test they just reduced the test point requirements.

Quoting TheCol (Reply 102):
The F-15SE isn't a totally new bird, it's just an upgrade of the original design. What do we have to lose at this point? Can't get any worse than the F-35 gong show. It would also be less costly to get Boeing to install our preferred kit now, rather than continuously change it out like we did with the F-18's. It seems to be a habit of ours to buy kit, just so we can pull out what is already installed and change the equipment to our specs. Just look at the cost overruns with every major procurement project since the 70's. If the government is smart, they'll put a stop to that trend and actually save some money for a change.

The thing with F-35 is that's one size fits all. Everyone gets the same version, and if anyone wants additional capabilities, they have to fund it themselves.

Quoting kanban (Reply 101):
This is one of those heart wrenching ploys used all to frequently by industry .. "please allow us to keep producing crap, smog, hazardous waste because if we don't you'll put all these poor people out of work." LM has enough rework to keep the force busy while they sort out their problems! Anyone who has studied manufacturing concepts knows that rework and multiple handling cost company's massively in labor, overhead, materials, and profit. (Oh wait, the government has guaranteed a profit through their mis-management)

People need to get real about this 'mistake jet' nonsense. Since when is there one 'final' configuration? In aircraft development there isn't -- period. And oh-by-the-way, one man's concurrency is another man's ECP. 'Zero program concurrency' Hornets went all the way to Lot what...21? Go look at the 'correction of deficiency' funding lines for Super Hornet. There's literally hundreds of ECP's listed for the Super Hornet, some of them major changes, to the point where the first off one the line is totally different that the ones that are currently rolling off the line. Does that mean that the early build jets are 'mistake jets'? No; or perhaps more correctly stated, no more or less than early F-35 LRIP lots.

The concurrency monster was the canard the government used to extract money from the program. Critics extended the thought virally using 'mistake jets' as a mantra. It's complete and utter nonsense.


User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 115, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 17 hours ago) and read 14813 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 114):
The thing with F-35 is that's one size fits all. Everyone gets the same version, and if anyone wants additional capabilities, they have to fund it themselves.

Except that it's not, it's three different aircraft, unless what you mean is everyone gets the same version of a given version (A, B, or C). Furthermore, if any operator wants additional capabilities, yes, they would have to fund it themselves -- but to add additional capability, they would have to have access to the source code for the weapons portion of the overall 'package' of computer systems, and to be able to test the integration of additional capabilities so that there is no interference with any of the other systems. Which the United States is not willing to do. Just ask the Turks. Kind of a Catch-22.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3864 posts, RR: 27
Reply 116, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 13 hours ago) and read 14716 times:
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Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 114):
You must be too young to remember when the F/A-18A/B was being developed. It was highly controversial for its development overruns, its excessive unit costs and its non-performance relative to requirements (conspicuously, range/ combat radius among others). A 1988 CRS study on concurrency pegged its unit cost at 188 percent above the target -


Odd choice of words since according to your profile you weren't born yet either.

You tend to ignore two points
1) because past programs had problems is not REPEAT NOT an excuse to blunder ahead doing the same.
2) there is extreme budget tightening going on and the specter of hundreds of millions being needed to fix planes that were intentionally built knowing there were defective does not sit well with the services, congress, and the tax payer.

[Edited 2012-05-17 08:42:18]

User currently offlinesweair From Sweden, joined Nov 2011, 1833 posts, RR: 0
Reply 117, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 14712 times:

One thing I don't get, how would a F35 replace A10 in CAS? Its too fast for strafing runs?!

User currently offlineUSAF336TFS From United States of America, joined Apr 2005, 1445 posts, RR: 51
Reply 118, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 14672 times:

Interesting thread for speculation, but not dealing with the realities of the 21st century. I don't have access to the classified data about the design goals and if or if not they, are being met - And I seriously doubt anyone on A.net does either.
That being said, the U.S. has committed itself to well over 2000 of these aircraft. So have many of our European and Far Eastern allies as well as Israel.

I'm going to venture a guess that a lot of the negative reporting is being fed purposely.

[Edited 2012-05-17 10:51:01]


336th Tactical Fighter Squadron, 4th Fighter Wing, Seymour Johnson AFB
User currently offlineBigJKU From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 883 posts, RR: 11
Reply 119, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 14657 times:

Quoting sweair (Reply 117):
One thing I don't get, how would a F35 replace A10 in CAS? Its too fast for strafing runs?!

Feel free to sign up to pilot the A-10 on strafing runs in anything but the most benign SAM environment.

I think it has been accepted for some time that the A-10 is probably not going to be operating against a 1st rate opponent with access to modern SAM's in appreciable numbers. The losses would just be too high. Hell, even in the gulf in 90-91 they operate mostly from mid-to-high altitude where they were out of the range of most man portable SAM systems. The idea of getting down and mixing it up with your gun is going to lead to pretty high losses. Things like SDBII and Brimstone are basically designed to make that unnecessary due to the huge risk associated with it.

The A-10 can do great work in COIN operations. Outside of that I would not want to operate one anywhere that the airforce has not already taken complete control of the SAM situation with other aircraft. Frankly there are just better ways to deal with armored advances now than when the A-10 was put in service.


User currently offlineSSTeve From United States of America, joined Dec 2011, 733 posts, RR: 2
Reply 120, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 14646 times:

Quoting sweair (Reply 117):
One thing I don't get, how would a F35 replace A10 in CAS? Its too fast for strafing runs?!

Even the -B?


User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 121, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 14643 times:

Quoting kanban (Reply 116):
2) there is extreme budget tightening going on and the specter of hundreds of millions being needed to fix planes that were intentionally built knowing there were defective does not sit well with the services, congress, and the tax payer.
Quoting USAF336TFS (Reply 118):
That being said, the U.S. has committed itself to well over 2000 of these aircraft. So have many of our European and Far Eastern allies as well as Israel.

Given the US austere financial situation, likely to persist for quite some time, and per Kanban's comments quoted above (Pentagon budget reduced $500B over next decade), I think there is not a snowball's chance in hell the US will purchase over 2,000 of these beasts. Even if they could afford them.

As for the partners in the program, several are, if not actively backing out, have that topic on their mind: Canada, Australia, to name two.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlineUSAF336TFS From United States of America, joined Apr 2005, 1445 posts, RR: 51
Reply 122, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 14643 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 121):
As for the partners in the program, several are, if not actively backing out, have that topic on their mind: Canada, Australia, to name two.

But they haven't yet, have they?

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 121):
I think there is not a snowball's chance in hell the US will purchase over 2,000 of these beasts. Even if they could afford them.

I'll take that bet. Steak dinner, your choice in restaurants in Manhattan. The DoD will have no choice but to take at least 2400. And I think the F-35 will surprise many of its critics as well as potential adversaries.

[Edited 2012-05-17 12:20:29]


336th Tactical Fighter Squadron, 4th Fighter Wing, Seymour Johnson AFB
User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3864 posts, RR: 27
Reply 123, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 14629 times:
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Quoting USAF336TFS (Reply 122):
But they haven't yet, have they?


they are however deferring actual orders and remaining on MOU's...

Quoting USAF336TFS (Reply 118):
the U.S. has committed itself to well over 2000 of these aircraft.


there is a big gap between what has been funded and 2000+... Congress will decide more after the fall elections depending on the political makeup and the availability of funds. ..


User currently offlinesweair From Sweden, joined Nov 2011, 1833 posts, RR: 0
Reply 124, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 14623 times:

The A-10 has shown its use in every conflicts since gulf war 1, its really good at CAS once you control the battle field, that will cost a lot more to do with a fast F35 buzzing along in the sky.

They can survive a lot of punishment too, but sure it ain't the coolest newest high tech plane out there..


User currently offlineBigJKU From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 883 posts, RR: 11
Reply 125, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 14606 times:

Quoting sweair (Reply 124):
The A-10 has shown its use in every conflicts since gulf war 1, its really good at CAS once you control the battle field, that will cost a lot more to do with a fast F35 buzzing along in the sky.

They can survive a lot of punishment too, but sure it ain't the coolest newest high tech plane out there..

I am not saying the thing is not useful. What I am saying is that it was designed for a different mission than what it now does for the most part. I think the US will simply keep a portion of the A-10 fleet flying for a pretty long time and then won't replace the aircraft at all. No one else operates anything like it really anyway so you can probably get by without it.


User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 126, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 14557 times:

Quoting USAF336TFS (Reply 122):
Quoting connies4ever (Reply 121):
As for the partners in the program, several are, if not actively backing out, have that topic on their mind: Canada, Australia, to name two.

But they haven't yet, have they?

The operative word being yet. It's become a big political furball up here. If the feds have to go back to a competition they first have to define an overall problem and requirement and therein lie all the pitfalls for them. But by their own internal set of rules they (feds and DND) have not followed procedure on this file at all.

The Arctic patrol mission is purely illusory. The Russians are not going to be coming over the pole and if you need coverage, Global Hawk will do just fine. Or perhaps the RAF Sentinel R1 which is to be grounded by the Brits in 2014.

Quoting USAF336TFS (Reply 122):
I'll take that bet. Steak dinner, your choice in restaurants in Manhattan. The DoD will have no choice but to take at least 2400. And I think the F-35 will surprise many of its critics as well as potential adversaries.

Hmmm...without meaning to be insulting, I will never set foot anywhere in the NYC area again. Was there once. Horrifyingly dirty. Like the 3rd world.

The F-35 may surprise critics, including me, once it gets through the remaining 75% of its' test regime, after six years of flight, but I am not optimistic. The 'at least 2400' is I think actually the max that has historically been referred to. Remember that originally the F-22 run was supposed to be on the order of 750. Actually 183 (I think). Since F-35 is a tri-service machine, it will hit more than 25% of the originally-intended production run, assuming it isn't cancelled after the election, but I simply cannot see 2,400 given the US financial condition.

Given the op tempo the past decade, all services need new kit in many areas. All of which will cost, and that money has to come from somewhere. The money allocated to the F-35 is probably the most visible target.

$1.5T life-cycle cost ? When DC is running annual deficits on the order of '00's of $B ?



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 571 posts, RR: 1
Reply 127, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 14599 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 126):
$1.5T life-cycle cost ?

Until you put that number into context, it means nothing. Show me the total life-cycle cost of the F-15, F-16, F-18A/B/C/D/E/F/G and A-10, add them all up and adjust the $$$ for 2012. Don't forget to include all the computers in the hangars, coffee for the techs, clothing and all the broken tools over the years.

[Edited 2012-05-17 16:30:02]

User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 128, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 14572 times:

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 127):
Quoting connies4ever (Reply 126):
$1.5T life-cycle cost ?

Until you put that number into context, it means nothing. Show me the total life-cycle cost of the F-15, F-16, F-18A/B/C/D/E/F/G and A-10, add them all up and adjust the $$$ for 2012. Don't forget to include all the computers in the hangars, coffee for the techs, clothing and all the broken tools over the years.

As does the continued assertion that this thing will defeat anything around. It might, but that remains to be seen. Once/if it ever completes test flying.

When I go into an auto show room, I don't automatically believe everything I see in the glossy brochures.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 571 posts, RR: 1
Reply 129, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 2 hours ago) and read 14550 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 128):
As does the continued assertion that this thing will defeat anything around. It might, but that remains to be seen. Once/if it ever completes test flying.

When I go into an auto show room, I don't automatically believe everything I see in the glossy brochures.

Completely avoiding the question again I see, seems to be common, saying the F35 is expensive without drawing comparisons.

No one said it "will defeat anything around", but it will however give it's operators a very distinct advantage on the battlefield. JSF partner nations and those who signed on later, i.e. Japan, know just how advanced the F35 really is. When the F35 reaches IOC, there will be nothing that will be able to touch it, including those airshow tumblers from Russia or China.

Unrelated to the F35, for the auto show room comment, no one goes into a dealership today and asks the salesman for the model features when all the info is available online or through other sources. You are an idiot if you don't do your research ahead of time. I go into the showroom knowing that it's more or less the car/truck I want and want to confirm it with a test drive. All that is left is price negotiation. Wait, that is related to the F35, hmm.....nations knowing what model they want through independent research without pushy, arrogant salesmen.


User currently offlinerwessel From United States of America, joined Jan 2007, 2413 posts, RR: 2
Reply 130, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 14543 times:
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Quoting BigJKU (Reply 125):
I am not saying the thing is not useful. What I am saying is that it was designed for a different mission than what it now does for the most part. I think the US will simply keep a portion of the A-10 fleet flying for a pretty long time and then won't replace the aircraft at all. No one else operates anything like it really anyway so you can probably get by without it.

IIRC, the Russians have ~250 active Su-25s, and a couple hundred more are in service with other users. So total numbers in service are in the same ballpark for the A-10 and Su-25.


User currently offlineOroka From Canada, joined Dec 2006, 913 posts, RR: 0
Reply 131, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 14526 times:

They also dont roll in the gas, maintenance, and insurance costs over the projected lifetime into the price the quote you for a car. You would think that would drive people off from buying it.

Ever consider how they can give you a $600 cell phone if you sign up for a 3 year plan? Do the math for what you will pay over those three years, seems REALLY expensive.


IIRC, I read that they total procurement, maintenance, upgrades, and operation costs of our CF-18 fleet over 20 years is somewhere around $25 billion in 2011 dollars. If those figures were thrown around back when we were shopping for a fighter, I dont think we would have gotten hornets (or anything semi decent).


Will the F-35 be the best fighter out there? Nope, that is what the F-22 does, other than that, it is at least the equivalent of anything flying out there today. Add in superior training, and stealth, you have a lethal combination.


User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1858 posts, RR: 0
Reply 132, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 1 day ago) and read 14516 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 115):
Except that it's not, it's three different aircraft, unless what you mean is everyone gets the same version of a given version (A, B, or C). Furthermore, if any operator wants additional capabilities, yes, they would have to fund it themselves -- but to add additional capability, they would have to have access to the source code for the weapons portion of the overall 'package' of computer systems, and to be able to test the integration of additional capabilities so that there is no interference with any of the other systems. Which the United States is not willing to do. Just ask the Turks. Kind of a Catch-22.

With all 3 variants of F-35, when a decision is made to integrate a weapon on F-35, everyone gets the same upgrade, whether or not one chooses to ever carry that weapon, You get the exact same software in every jet. The same for the pilot vehicle interface. It’s identical regardless of variant, regardless of nation. It’s the same. The only difference is in how or what you might take off and land from. I'll touch on this a little later.

Quoting BigJKU (Reply 113):

The F-35 will start from day 1 of IOC with LGB capability, JDAM capability and JSOW capability for air to ground work. It will have AMRAAM, AIM-9X and ASRAAM out of the box as well. I believe the F-35A will have SDB capability from the outset as well but I am not sure on that anymore. That is a lot more out of the box options for the F-35 and the follow on stuff is scheduled to roll out more rapidly by design. This puts a lot of stress on a program (for better or worse).
http://www.sldinfo.com/whitepapers/the-weaponization-of-the-f-35/

Block 2 aircraft will have JDAM and AMRAAM capabilities. At Block 3, SDB, among a whole host of other weapons will be integrated on F-35. In total, roughly 20 different weapons will be integrated onto F-35, and every F-35 will be able to operate the same weapon, be it a USAF, Norwegian, British, or Canadian.

Weapons development for F-35 will be the same across every F-35 version in terms of software. There are minor differences aerodynamically which may necessitate testing for each variant for carriage and separation, but the software across the fleet is the same. There is massive economies of scale to do this, which drives down weapons and integration costs. With current fighters, integrating a new weapon requires that the software for the aircraft be completely re-written for specific aircraft or series model. Then, after extensive testing, it can only be used on that specific aircraft or series.

The best example of this is the F-16; JDAM can only be launched by F-16s that have a digital INS/GPS system with the proper software upgrades to integrate with the weapons management system. Aircraft using JDAM require a 1760/1553-capable pylon.

As a result, JDAM is or can be carried by the following F-16 models: MLU aircraft, block 30/32, block 40/42, block 50/52, block 52+, and block 60. Older aircraft can be refitted with the digital INS/GPS system with the proper software, but this require months of testing to achieve.

Even the AMRAAM integration on F-16 varies depending on the version; basically all F-16s from Block 10 onwards are structurally AMRAAM-capable, although some A/B models lack both the wiring and the software, and although the C/D models have the wiring, some of them do not have the necessary software. So you may have USAF units where their F-16's are not fully integrated with AMRAAM, while others are fully integrated.

With F-35, EVERY F-35 will be able to use the same set of weapons, no matter when it was produced or which unit or user has it. The nice thing about F-35 is the software modularity; new capabilities can be added to F-35 without having to rewrite everything.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 121):

Given the US austere financial situation, likely to persist for quite some time, and per Kanban's comments quoted above (Pentagon budget reduced $500B over next decade), I think there is not a snowball's chance in hell the US will purchase over 2,000 of these beasts. Even if they could afford them.

The USAF, USMC, and USN need to replace their aging fleets quickly. F-35 is the only aircraft program that will be a serviceable, modern fighter that will be competitive 20+ years from now, that has the necessary production capacity to quickly replace thousands of aircraft in a short period of time. The USN and USMC are parking legacy Hornets right now due to airframe fatigue. Ditto the USAF with F-16's.

Quoting kanban (Reply 116):
You tend to ignore two points
1) because past programs had problems is not REPEAT NOT an excuse to blunder ahead doing the same.
2) there is extreme budget tightening going on and the specter of hundreds of millions being needed to fix planes that were intentionally built knowing there were defective does not sit well with the services, congress, and the tax payer.

You're asking for someone to price out, accurately even(!), something that doesn't yet exist. When that something includes components that don't yet exist. And where many of the technologies in those components don't yet exist. That's not even the required process, much less a realistic process. The required process is a bid, plus just a reasonably good-faith paper justification for why each bidder thinks their bid is realistic. And since the cheapest bid is almost invariably picked, there's a strong incentive to be as rosy with the estimates as is at all justifiable. Then when the imaginary, overly-rosy assumptions justifying the bid price turn out to be nothing but ink on paper, they submit more ink on paper with updated assumptions underlying a revised estimate, and various contracting officers are micromanaged all the way up to Congress on whether to bend to reality, cancel the contract, or bloviate and then bend to reality or cancel the contract.

And that's ignoring situations when the customer comes back to the vendor and says "actually, the requirement you designed it too up to now is outdated, and we need to add something to it" part... which every fighter jet program has been subjected to since WWII.


User currently offlinekanban From United States of America, joined Jan 2008, 3864 posts, RR: 27
Reply 133, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 1 day ago) and read 14509 times:
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Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 132):


you and powerslide sound like a company spokespeople reading from the prepared text... the same over and over and this customer isn't buying it.

many businesses including commercial aircraft succeed because they do not follow your model. military procurement need not continue to support the incompetent manufacturer. Look at the problems... change materials but forget to redesign for equivalent strength, they couldn't get the simple tail hook right.. these are no brainers and indicative of engineering and manufacturing incompetence. I understand that even the best computers can not model every aspect so things will show up.. however 6 years of testing and 22% complete.. wait till the first one on the publicity circuit disintegrates because of some undiscovered harmonic ..

you seem to justify everything that is inept as OK because there were problems with other programs.. with no expectation that these suppliers are capable of improvement.. that's kind of no idiot left behind then wondering why people can not add, write, or read.


User currently offlineTheCol From Canada, joined Jan 2007, 2039 posts, RR: 6
Reply 134, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 23 hours ago) and read 14505 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 114):
The thing with F-35 is that's one size fits all. Everyone gets the same version, and if anyone wants additional capabilities, they have to fund it themselves.

Which doesn't work for us. The Maritime Helicopter Project taught us all about that kind of procurement. We don't have the time to argue back and forth with the manufacturer while they stall over finances, and we cannot afford to sink countless billions into it for 10+ years. If Lockheed-Martin doesn't want to play ball with us, then the only logical step is to make a better deal with the competition.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 126):
The Arctic patrol mission is purely illusory. The Russians are not going to be coming over the pole

FACT: Russia is a superpower with big ambitions.
FACT: Most of the Arctic above the mainland is not internationally recognized as Canadian territory.
FACT: The above mentioned has enormous gas and oil reserves, which are scarce everywhere else.

Do the math. Russia obviously won't invade us, but they will plant a flag on and exploit any territory that we do not assert ourselves over.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 126):
and if you need coverage, Global Hawk will do just fine. Or perhaps the RAF Sentinel R1 which is to be grounded by the Brits in 2014.

Sure, why not? While we're at it, let's gut the CF and return it to the glory days of the 80's and 90's.  

Come on, admit it, you would like to see that happen.



No matter how random things may appear, there's always a plan.
User currently offlineSSTeve From United States of America, joined Dec 2011, 733 posts, RR: 2
Reply 135, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 22 hours ago) and read 14488 times:

Quoting TheCol (Reply 134):
FACT: Russia is a superpower

They're still more of a wannabe superpower, which is more dangerous.


User currently offlinesweair From Sweden, joined Nov 2011, 1833 posts, RR: 0
Reply 136, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 19 hours ago) and read 14474 times:

F35 is a dream, its one aircraft to fill 3 roles with one frame. It will always be a compromise in every role. The F22 was cancelled due to price..well the F35 is at the F22 price now.

It would have been cheaper to do at least 2 different frames instead of the F35 I am sure. One Air Force and one Navy, like the F16 and F18 once were. Killing 3 birds with one stone..never been easy..  


User currently offlineBigJKU From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 883 posts, RR: 11
Reply 137, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 15 hours ago) and read 14422 times:

Quoting sweair (Reply 136):
F35 is a dream, its one aircraft to fill 3 roles with one frame. It will always be a compromise in every role. The F22 was cancelled due to price..well the F35 is at the F22 price now.

It would have been cheaper to do at least 2 different frames instead of the F35 I am sure. One Air Force and one Navy, like the F16 and F18 once were. Killing 3 birds with one stone..never been easy..

I agree. The issue is that decision needed to be made by all parties 10 years ago.

The F-35 won't be the worlds best air superiority fighter, that much is sure.

I would venture it will be the worlds best attack plane though. It has an amazing array of systems integrated into it that will allow it to be a very potent strike aircraft in all respects. And it should be more than competent as a fighter given its strike capabilities.

Ideally you would be looking at two or three different aircraft for the various missions but that was not going to happen in the post-cold war era.

At this point there really are no better options. The F-35 will be better than almost anything else out there in most roles. Developing anything new would be expensive. Obtaining new model legacy aircraft (F-18, F-16, F-15) would not be cheap either (their production cost are not that different from the F-35 once it is in full production) and for the USAF would mean investing more money in SEAD and standoff weapons so I am not sure you would really save all that much in the end. All energies at this point need to be devoted to getting the most out of the F-35 that is possible simply because there is no better alternative.


User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 138, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 13 hours ago) and read 14397 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 132):
With all 3 variants of F-35, when a decision is made to integrate a weapon on F-35, everyone gets the same upgrade, whether or not one chooses to ever carry that weapon, You get the exact same software in every jet.
Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 132):
Block 2 aircraft will have JDAM and AMRAAM capabilities. At Block 3, SDB, among a whole host of other weapons will be integrated on F-35. In total, roughly 20 different weapons will be integrated onto F-35, and every F-35 will be able to operate the same weapon, be it a USAF, Norwegian, British, or Canadian.
Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 132):
Weapons development for F-35 will be the same across every F-35 version in terms of software. There are minor differences aerodynamically which may necessitate testing for each variant for carriage and separation, but the software across the fleet is the same.

For all of the above, it's a nice thought. The Turks want to integrate their own cruise missile into the total F-35 package, which requires access to the source code. Ditto the Israelis and their own systems, which may in fact be more advanced than the Americans. The US does not want to release source code, although I am fairly sure that they would have a decent level of confidence with the Israelis. But as to the Turks, this seems to be a stumbling block and may actually preclude signing of an actual contract. This issue may have been resolved, but I have not seen anything on it to this date.

This issue (software security) reared its' ugly head when we (Canada) purchased Super Hercs. The US wanted assurances, initially, that no foreign-born CF personnel would be working on the a/c. After some discussion this was waived with, I believe (and correct me if I am wrong), the understanding that foreign-borns would be further vetted.

In my own backyard, source code security and integrity is a big issue and we do not release it to anyone. And our package is in use in: USA, Germany, Russia, Turkey, Korea, China, Argentina, Romania. Master code is on a non-linked system so no penetration can occur.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 132):
With F-35, EVERY F-35 will be able to use the same set of weapons, no matter when it was produced or which unit or user has it. The nice thing about F-35 is the software modularity; new capabilities can be added to F-35 without having to rewrite everything.

See above re same set of weapons. Software modularity is something we've been doing for 25 years or so, so nothing new there. The key is a common module interface, so that data blocks can be transferred seamlessly. Easy enough with Fortran, not sure totally how you do this in C++ (a poor choice, b.t.w.).

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 132):
The USAF, USMC, and USN need to replace their aging fleets quickly. F-35 is the only aircraft program that will be a serviceable, modern fighter that will be competitive 20+ years from now, that has the necessary production capacity to quickly replace thousands of aircraft in a short period of time. The USN and USMC are parking legacy Hornets right now due to airframe fatigue. Ditto the USAF with F-16's

No argument that the legacy Hornets are wearing out, ours and the American ones. SLEPs can help but only take you so far. The issue that I have is what do you replace it with. Similar capability or something totally new. I am not sure, given the cost of developing new tech and new capability, that we need the F-35s alleged capability. I commented in one or another of the F-35 threads that it might actually achieve something truly great: make war unaffordable.

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 132):
And that's ignoring situations when the customer comes back to the vendor and says "actually, the requirement you designed it too up to now is outdated, and we need to add something to it"

Which would require access to the source code, see above.

Quoting SSTeve (Reply 135):
Quoting TheCol (Reply 134):
FACT: Russia is a superpower

They're still more of a wannabe superpower, which is more dangerous.

   Completely agree. Russia currently cannot compete with the west w.r.t. non-nuclear scenarios. For ICBM to ICBM exchanges, different picture. But then, nobody wins.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlineBigJKU From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 883 posts, RR: 11
Reply 139, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 13 hours ago) and read 14385 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 138):
The US does not want to release source code, although I am fairly sure that they would have a decent level of confidence with the Israelis.

I would guess the US trust Israel very little in that regard. There is not a great track record there really.


User currently offlineAesma From France, joined Nov 2009, 6937 posts, RR: 12
Reply 140, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 9 hours ago) and read 14322 times:

Quoting Powerslide (Reply 129):
Wait, that is related to the F35, hmm.....nations knowing what model they want through independent research without pushy, arrogant salesmen.

Yeah, we all know there is no politics involved when selling/buying arms.



New Technology is the name we give to stuff that doesn't work yet. Douglas Adams
User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 141, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week 7 hours ago) and read 14303 times:

Quoting BigJKU (Reply 139):
Quoting connies4ever (Reply 138):
The US does not want to release source code, although I am fairly sure that they would have a decent level of confidence with the Israelis.

I would guess the US trust Israel very little in that regard. There is not a great track record there really.

A fair point. It has been pointed out more than once that the biggest security threat to the USA is not China or Russia, but it's "ally" Israel. Thoroughly embedded in the political class, for sure. I don't know about the military aspect, but if they are human, and I think they are, equally co-optable as swivilians.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1858 posts, RR: 0
Reply 142, posted (2 years 7 months 1 week ago) and read 14264 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 138):
For all of the above, it's a nice thought. The Turks want to integrate their own cruise missile into the total F-35 package, which requires access to the source code. Ditto the Israelis and their own systems, which may in fact be more advanced than the Americans. The US does not want to release source code, although I am fairly sure that they would have a decent level of confidence with the Israelis. But as to the Turks, this seems to be a stumbling block and may actually preclude signing of an actual contract. This issue may have been resolved, but I have not seen anything on it to this date.

This issue (software security) reared its' ugly head when we (Canada) purchased Super Hercs. The US wanted assurances, initially, that no foreign-born CF personnel would be working on the a/c. After some discussion this was waived with, I believe (and correct me if I am wrong), the understanding that foreign-borns would be further vetted.

In my own backyard, source code security and integrity is a big issue and we do not release it to anyone. And our package is in use in: USA, Germany, Russia, Turkey, Korea, China, Argentina, Romania. Master code is on a non-linked system so no penetration can occur.

The source code issue is a complete red herring.

You really only need the source code if you are doing very deep tinkering or there is something seriously wrong with the fighter jet, and by then, the manufacturer would already be involved in what you are doing.

What the Turkish officials and what the Turkish media are saying are two totally different things; Turkish officials did not even say that they want full source codes. It is a Turkish newspaper's claim that Turkey wants full source codes. What officials said that they will continue talking to the US government until they receive satisfactory guaranties for Turkish requests which are not made public yet. There are some other issues regarding Turkish participation in the project that Turkish officials would be talking to their counterparts. One of them is the logistic support structure of F-35 that is based on PBL. Turkey wants to maintain her F-35s independently and set up a regional logistical support center. So, there are other important topics that must be finalized before Turkey signs a firm contract to buy 100(+16) F-35s. I am also sure that Turkish government would not be asking 10 million lines( has it reached 10 million lines?) of codes which could take years to analyze and learn, instead, they would be asking plug and play interface option to access OFP and add Turkish specific Weapons/Communication/EW suits. Integration of Turkish specific weapons should not be big issue as long as Turkish companies produce their weapons with UAI standards. New weapons will be plug and play for F-35 as long as the weapons interface program is written in UAI standards. Of course, the physical certification and flight testing of the weapons with F-35 still require and take time because of the long list of weapons need to be certified.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 138):
See above re same set of weapons. Software modularity is something we've been doing for 25 years or so, so nothing new there. The key is a common module interface, so that data blocks can be transferred seamlessly. Easy enough with Fortran, not sure totally how you do this in C++ (a poor choice, b.t.w.).

F-35 requires that your weapons comply with UAI standards. Here's a little bit on UAI:
http://www.mputtre.com/id11.html

The UAI standard allows for a common language between F-35 and whatever weapon is integrated on it. It will be a true plug and play standard for weapons on F-35.

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 138):
Which would require access to the source code, see above.

Actually, you missed my point as I was talking about customer induced design changes during development and feature creep...


User currently offlineconnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 143, posted (2 years 7 months 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 14225 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 142):
The source code issue is a complete red herring.

You really only need the source code if you are doing very deep tinkering or there is something seriously wrong with the fighter jet, and by then, the manufacturer would already be involved in what you are doing.

Actually no. Access to the source is important, addition of new weapons and/or capabilities may require serious changes. Standards are important for sure, but are not everything.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1858 posts, RR: 0
Reply 144, posted (2 years 7 months 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 14224 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 143):

Actually no. Access to the source is important, addition of new weapons and/or capabilities may require serious changes. Standards are important for sure, but are not everything.

However, with F-35, the heavy usage of interface standards means that 99% of the time, a user will never have to tinker with the source code to add new capabilities or weapons. As long as whatever they are implementing is compatible with the UAI standard, which supports all sorts of weapons and pods, it will work with F-35. The UAI standard is rapidly going to become the NATO standard for armaments interfaces on combat aircraft (in fact, there is a NATO working group working on finalizing implementation of UAI as a NATO standard).

The use of UAI is not the same as legacy weapon integration, one requires a block upgrade and the other a small download. All the weapon has to do is to communicate using a a uniform set of data to the UAI interface. The development and integration of UAI is a major step forward in reducing risks in the development of new weapons. Many current combat aircraft will be back-fitted with UAI.

Take the time to read this article on why UAI won't require users to be tinkering with the source code to integrate new weapons or capabilities on F-35.
http://www.dsp.dla.mil/app_uil/conte...newsletters/journal/DSPJ-07-05.pdf

UAI seems to, at last, be getting rid of the extraordinarily archaic manner in which modern weapons are integrated with the software on the aircraft. The only surprising thing is that we've should have thought of this decades ago.

It's no different, in principle, from introducing a new peripheral to a computer, or a new mobile phone to a network. The peripheral should have its own driver, which uses a standard interface to communicate with the computer or network. The definition of the characteristics of the peripheral is just a set of data, which the computer is already equipped to interpret.

In principle, an air-launched weapon is exactly the same. The launch aircraft needs to know its characteristics, but that's just data. Commands transmitted from aircraft to weapon need to be understood, but all that needs is that they use the same data exchange standard.


User currently offlineBigJKU From United States of America, joined Feb 2007, 883 posts, RR: 11
Reply 145, posted (2 years 7 months 6 days 14 hours ago) and read 14154 times:

Quoting connies4ever (Reply 141):
Quoting BigJKU (Reply 139):
Quoting connies4ever (Reply 138):
The US does not want to release source code, although I am fairly sure that they would have a decent level of confidence with the Israelis.

I would guess the US trust Israel very little in that regard. There is not a great track record there really.

A fair point. It has been pointed out more than once that the biggest security threat to the USA is not China or Russia, but it's "ally" Israel. Thoroughly embedded in the political class, for sure. I don't know about the military aspect, but if they are human, and I think they are, equally co-optable as swivilians.

I would not say that it is just the fact that Israel is a major exporter of weapons systems to places the US would rather not see them. In their position they will make what friends they can when they can so I would not turn something like the source code for the F-35 over to them either.


User currently offlinePowerslide From Canada, joined Oct 2010, 571 posts, RR: 1
Reply 146, posted (2 years 7 months 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 14096 times:

Quoting kanban (Reply 133):
you and powerslide sound like a company spokespeople reading from the prepared text... the same over and over and this customer isn't buying it.

Who says you have to? It's like trying to convince religious people that god doesn't exist. You can only offer up so many facts but if the person is stubborn enough, he won't listen.


User currently offlineFlighty From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 8769 posts, RR: 3
Reply 147, posted (2 years 7 months 6 days 9 hours ago) and read 14085 times:

Quoting ThePointblank (Reply 72):
With the F-35, a development for the A, B, or C is the same from a software point of view, meaning if another nation or service wants to use the same weapon, the manufacturer doesn't have to go back to square one with software development and integration to integrate the weapon on their F-35. It's basically pay now vs pay later.

You're stating the original sales pitch for the program. Yes, in theory it makes sense, if you ignore why the program was probably doomed from the beginning.

Probably this is where I will add: in a few years a couple of Chinese drones based on American / Israeli designs will be able to take out a whole squadron of F-35 from a long range. At that point, it will become clear that this was a momentum program... not actually a program for the future. JMO


User currently offlinebennett123 From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2004, 7809 posts, RR: 3
Reply 148, posted (2 years 7 months 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 14057 times:

Will this issue of source codes be a greater problem for a non NATO country, like Israel?.

User currently onlineThePointblank From Canada, joined Jan 2009, 1858 posts, RR: 0
Reply 149, posted (2 years 7 months 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 13972 times:

Quoting bennett123 (Reply 148):
Will this issue of source codes be a greater problem for a non NATO country, like Israel?.

No, because they won't need access to source codes. Furthermore, the Israeli's and the US have an agreement where if the Israeli's require any additions to their F-35's, that the US will perform the necessary adjustments.

Quoting Flighty (Reply 147):
You're stating the original sales pitch for the program. Yes, in theory it makes sense, if you ignore why the program was probably doomed from the beginning.

The same doom and gloom was proclaimed during the development of the F-15, the F-16, and the F/A-18. In all respects, all three of these programs turned to be successful. Therefore, I don't take any stock from anyone proclaiming doom and gloom because there's always going to be critics of every program.