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Air Force considering A-10 replacement

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posted on Feb, 14 2015 @ 07:15 AM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Beg your pardon but the killing of ADA IS a scout primary task on a modern battle field.
The A10 is also buiit and proven to be able to be really shot up and come home,THAT is why the F-35 replacing it in the CAS role is a joke.
Can a flying tank be created?
Can lasers or railguns be used,perhaps in the defensive config?
If it isn't low and slow no need to apply.
edit on 14-2-2015 by cavtrooper7 because: (no reason given)




posted on Feb, 14 2015 @ 08:03 AM
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The A10 has been a battle winner. I've been witness to it first hand. It rips apart enemy defences like confetti.

The low and slow part is actually a defence in itself. Most AAA and hand held missile-based defence systems work in the 500-2500m ranges. The A10 regularly works in what is referred to as the small arms belt, below 500m. Most missile-based systems are optimal above this height. The A10 is a flying tank, able to soak up most of the threats below 500m. Removal of AD assets is done as part of a combined arms battle anyway by dedicated systems. No weapon fights in isolation.

The AH64 was also designed as an anti-armour machine, but it has been found to be invaluable in the CCA role. The A10 is the same.

Anyone who wants to bin such a proven system because it isn't being faced with the target it was designed to meet is a fool, as is anyone who thinks we won't be fighting small scale COIN tasks in the future.

There is a threat of course, but war is about taking controlled risk. There will always be a threat.
edit on 14-2-2015 by PaddyInf because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 14 2015 @ 08:06 AM
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originally posted by: MystikMushroom
I we could dream up a new CAS platform...what would it look like?


A multi engine aircraft with straight or slightly swept wings, perhaps variable geometry for the "lets get the hell out of here" moments. A heavy rotary cannon that will be as effective as the Avenger but less weight. Passive and maybe a few active stealth systems to counter new portable SAM launcher. Armor of course, still plenty of deadly AAA out there now radar guided. Should designers want to include an observation role you can expect to see a 2 seater.

I would also imagine it would be built as simple as possible to ensure easy maintenance, repair and rearming at FOBs and also have STOL capability. Maybe even set up like the V-22 with tilt rotor engines so it can do some of the things the AH-64 can.



posted on Feb, 14 2015 @ 10:42 AM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

If you honestly think that there will be a brand new A-10 replacement then your living in a dream world. Once it's all settled down after they've been canned, they'll announce that they will be purchasing more F-35's to fill the vacancy.

Future CAS will be split between F-35's, UAV's, F-15/F16's and AH-64's etc. Smart bombs being deployed from higher altitudes and longer ranges. None will be as effective as what the A-10 does but there will be no other choice.

In an ideal world there would be a way found for the army to take control of them. Then they could be modernised and upgraded (new engines, data links, sensor pods, rocket pods, hellfires etc, etc).

The stupidity of scrapping them is that they would be more relevant today than ever. What about the hundreds of Russian tanks stationed along the Ukrainian border. In South Korea to repel the tanks from the North etc, etc. Heck, they would be in their element in taking on Iran's swarm boats in any future conflict. Finland, Israel etc would love to have them.

Scrapping the A-10 is absolutely idiotic on cost ground when you consider they are the cheapest aircraft the USAF operate and that less than 1% of the budget for the USAF over the next few years is taken up by the Warthogs. If they don't want to use them or even station them to potential hot spots around the world where they would be handy...then export and license them to friendly countries. This way they are kept running and if ever needed, could be returned to USAF hands.



posted on Feb, 14 2015 @ 11:06 AM
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I don't know where to start my reply. My guess is that I'm the only person here that has experienced the affected policies of the Army/Air Force turf wars of the 1960's.

Let me qualify myself. I was a infantry platoon leader in Viet Nam (69-70) followed by another tour as an aviation platoon leader/company XO in '72-'73. I think I have an unusual perspective on CAS having seen both sides of the issue.

While sitting on a hilltop calling for air support we received help from a wide array of aircraft. The Army helicopters was welcomed but couldn't stay long and had a light load of arms. The AF/Navy aircraft carried a big load but again they couldn't stay long on station. The two aircraft we loved were the A-1 Skyraiders and the A-37s. They could delivered close accurate support and stay on station for much longer than the two passes by other types. My fellow grunts shared the same feeling toward the Skyraiders as do the A-10 supporters now.

When I attended flight school in 1971, I saw many aircraft types that had been tested by the army for CAS duties until the Key West agreement a few years before. The Army wasn't allowed to have "armed fixed wing aircraft". Some of these aircraft just sat in a corner of a hangar or languished in a lot next to the aviation museum.

The AF had a half-hearted program to develop counter insurgency aircraft (COIN) to fill the Army's needs. The A-10 was only developed to meet a cold war requirement not lessons learned in Viet Nam.

As I see this problem, the AF generals have a "Buck Rogers/Star Wars mentality and the Army generals are too scared to venture away from their rotary wing comfort zone. The AF likes mega buck aircraft programs and it has taken 20+ years for army aviation to look seriously at procuring tilt rotor aircraft. The CAS mission lacks the Star Wars allure. The low tech A-10 isn't a Buck Rogers airplane as is the F-22 or F-35 so the AF doesn't like it. The Army doesn't like fixed wing aircraft because they are outside their comfort zone and has a bad taste in their mouth due to the Key West accords. It would appear that the A-10 issue is a victim of a fraternal mentality between the AF and the Army.
edit on 14-2-2015 by buddah6 because: lobotomized through superior pain meds.



posted on Feb, 14 2015 @ 12:31 PM
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originally posted by: mikell
a reply to: MystikMushroom

Start with 3 engines and 2 cannons a pilot and a weapons jockey. Vertical takeoff and land

Sounds reasonable

Would WI-Fi make em happy





SORRY COBRA BEAT YOU TOO IT!! you just described the "rattler"



posted on Feb, 14 2015 @ 06:31 PM
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originally posted by: buddah6
I don't know where to start my reply. My guess is that I'm the only person here that has experienced the affected policies of the Army/Air Force turf wars of the 1960's.

Let me qualify myself. I was a infantry platoon leader in Viet Nam (69-70) followed by another tour as an aviation platoon leader/company XO in '72-'73. I think I have an unusual perspective on CAS having seen both sides of the issue.

While sitting on a hilltop calling for air support we received help from a wide array of aircraft. The Army helicopters was welcomed but couldn't stay long and had a light load of arms. The AF/Navy aircraft carried a big load but again they couldn't stay long on station. The two aircraft we loved were the A-1 Skyraiders and the A-37s. They could delivered close accurate support and stay on station for much longer than the two passes by other types. My fellow grunts shared the same feeling toward the Skyraiders as do the A-10 supporters now.

When I attended flight school in 1971, I saw many aircraft types that had been tested by the army for CAS duties until the Key West agreement a few years before. The Army wasn't allowed to have "armed fixed wing aircraft". Some of these aircraft just sat in a corner of a hangar or languished in a lot next to the aviation museum.

The AF had a half-hearted program to develop counter insurgency aircraft (COIN) to fill the Army's needs. The A-10 was only developed to meet a cold war requirement not lessons learned in Viet Nam.

As I see this problem, the AF generals have a "Buck Rogers/Star Wars mentality and the Army generals are too scared to venture away from their rotary wing comfort zone. The AF likes mega buck aircraft programs and it has taken 20+ years for army aviation to look seriously at procuring tilt rotor aircraft. The CAS mission lacks the Star Wars allure. The low tech A-10 isn't a Buck Rogers airplane as is the F-22 or F-35 so the AF doesn't like it. The Army doesn't like fixed wing aircraft because they are outside their comfort zone and has a bad taste in their mouth due to the Key West accords. It would appear that the A-10 issue is a victim of a fraternal mentality between the AF and the Army.


The UK Royal Navy and RAF are having a similar pissing match over fixed wing carrier ops and the fleet air arm, the British Army has Apache and Lynx but no CAS specific fixed wing.

I understand the Hog is outdated in a modern battlefield, but so are troops yet we always need them so we need to protect them. Surely the FAC, F-35 and other potential high, stealthy and super battlefield aware aircraft can guide the F-35s/F-22 to eliminate all mobile AA and leave the Hogs back for the Army?

My vision of the future for UK (when Typhoon gets Brimstone) is a FAC or hiding Apache or both identify and designate the AAA / AA in the convoy and a typhoon in bomb truck mode flies in and delivers 16 Brimstone. The Apaches pop up and remove the rest of the Armour with a second wave of Typhoon.

Now the tanks and troops roll forwards and you could insert A-10 here.

F-35 and Taranis are further forward removing fixed SAM, logistics and Control & Command.

So three layers and in the A-10 layer, yes they will have to encounter Manpads but so do Apache and Troop transport helo's.

So I think it is still relevant and capable to support ground troops, however, I might argue that the Apache or similar type is more than capable in my musings above.

Apparently the Mujahideen thought the same of the Hinds as the Taliban think of the A-10 and the Apache today.



posted on Feb, 14 2015 @ 06:40 PM
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I just thought of something. A variant of the SEAram equipped onto a Warthog in a turret than can shoot down incoming missiles.



posted on Feb, 14 2015 @ 09:20 PM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58
a reply to: JimTSpock

There have been several CAS missions over Afghanistan where the 1800 rounds of the GAU-8 saved the day. Anything else would have had to have multiple flights and left the ground guys uncovered until the next flight arrived. The two A-10s were able to stay overhead until they were able to break contact, because they had enough ammunition internally.

The AAA problem is the reason a replacement is necessary. The Hogs can't survive, but a new aircraft would be able to, while still being a CAS specialist that is necessary.


The aircrew one your speaking of just received their Navy Service Crosses (second only to the Medal of Honor) this year. Thats how much they risked to protect those guys.



posted on Feb, 14 2015 @ 09:26 PM
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a reply to: boomer135

It was ballsy as hell. I couldn't believe the write up on it.



posted on Feb, 14 2015 @ 09:47 PM
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Here's my take on the whole CAS thing, Since probably half my combat sorties were refueling aircraft performing CAS I've seen quite a bit first hand. The A-10 is a rediculously awesome aircraft in the CAS role. I cant tell you how many times we heard a call for A-10s and the only thing in the area are vipers. I think its more of a personal aircraft to the grunts on the ground than anything. And psychological as hell to the enemy. The Air Force is stupid for getting rid of them completely.

Why not give them over to the Army? Or the Guard and Reserve? Or hey, how about the Marines? Ah yes, the Marines. Who are the key reason the Air Force is wanting to get rid of the A-10s. I mean think about it. The Marines single handedly legitimized the Air Forces argument to retire the hogs and replace them with the F-35s. How? BECAUSE THE MARINES BOUGHT THE F35 TO PERFORM CAS! Yes, the Marines bought the F-35B to basically perform the same mission that the A-10s were performing. So why is the F-35 ok for the Marines in the CAS role, but not ok for the army or airforce? Doesnt make much sense to me.

One thing that stands out in the thread is the people saying the A-10 wouldnt survive until we had air superority. Well thats probably true, however, it will still be able to perform CAS, even without all the enemy air defenses knocked out. For one, we have layers of aircraft in a battle field, not just a pair of A-10s and a tanker circuling by themselves somewhere. You have the A-10s on the bottom doing the CAS thing. On top of that you have (future war talk now) the raptors keeping an eye on the sky, watching the A-10s back from the air as well as the rest of the airborne assets. Then you have the F-35s performing SEAD, dropping bombs, and more importantly to the A-10, jamming. So even if these pop up air defenses tried anything they would either be destroyed by the new wild weasel on the block, be destroyed by the new AESA radar on the block, or be jammed by the next generation jammer on the block (or a growler depending on how many of those we got left after the first day of battle). So really i think the A-10 could perform its CAS role in a contested airspace. Hell if tankers and AWACS are flying in the same airspace and they survive, then the A-10 can survive.

All that being said, there wont be a follow on CAS aircraft, like Zaph said. They will retire/transfer them, and fill the order for more JSF's. It will be a sad day for sure, however it wont be the first time the Air Force retires an aircraft without a replacement already fielded....



posted on Feb, 14 2015 @ 09:50 PM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58
a reply to: boomer135

It was ballsy as hell. I couldn't believe the write up on it.


yeah whats danger close defined as? I know it wasnt 20 yards like in the writeup. lol



posted on Feb, 14 2015 @ 10:01 PM
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a reply to: boomer135

Danger close is pretty much anything that might have fragments landing on your head. They were well inside that.



posted on Feb, 14 2015 @ 10:27 PM
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posted on Feb, 14 2015 @ 10:29 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

If you guys are talking about these badasses, the distance was as close as 20m.



posted on Feb, 15 2015 @ 08:14 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

BACK to wild weasel?



posted on Feb, 15 2015 @ 08:27 PM
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originally posted by: justwanttofly
a reply to: Zaphod58

If you guys are talking about these badasses, the distance was as close as 20m.



Yeah it was those guys. Earlier this year they had the DFC upgraded to the service cross.



posted on Feb, 15 2015 @ 08:50 PM
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a reply to: cavtrooper7

Are you asking if the A-10 will go back to a Wild Weasel role? They never were in the SEAD business to begin with.

Giving them the SEAD mission now doesn't make any sense anyways with the F-35 right around the corner. The F-35 will be a much more capable SEAD platform than the A-10 could ever dream to be.



posted on Feb, 15 2015 @ 09:25 PM
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There's going to be a summit of Chiefs at Nellis that will discuss the future of CAS. Some of the ideas are to change the weapons, and the platform. Instead of a huge 30mm cannon, change to a smaller gun with more ammunition. Welsh talked about a gun with bullets about an inch long, carrying 50,000 rounds as an example.

He also said that the A-10 won't last longer than 2027-2028 before they'd have to recapitalize the entire fleet.



posted on Feb, 15 2015 @ 09:38 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Not knowing much about aircraft except for my love of the warthog.Would it be possible to put Osprey-type engines on the A-10?Or would that be too much.Thanks.







 
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