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CBO says funding too low to replace aircraft

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posted on Dec, 13 2018 @ 02:21 PM
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A CBO report says that the Air Force is spending too little on replacing their aging aircraft. On a one to one replacement basis, they'd need to spend $15B a year in the 2020s, $23B in the 2030s, and $15B in the 2040s. Procurement spending from 1980 until 2010 averaged about $12B, and about $9B from 2010 until 2017.

The Air Force fleet consists of approximately 2,000 fighters, 150 bombers, 1,100 support aircraft (transports and utility), 450 tankers, 1,200 trainers, and 450 helicopters and tilt rotors and has an average age between 26-30 for most of that inventory. With new aircraft there's no need for a one to one replacement, but spending as little as they are isn't going to get the job done either, unless they're buying aircraft that are far more capable than we're currently seeing.

www.flightglobal.com...




posted on Dec, 13 2018 @ 03:57 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

So what do the clowns at the CBO think we are going to replace these planes with?
What's the viable replacement for the f15 and f16?



posted on Dec, 13 2018 @ 05:39 PM
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a reply to: Bluntone22

In the timeframe they're talking about, F-35 and F-XX.
edit on 12/13/2018 by Zaphod58 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 14 2018 @ 03:27 AM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Why do we even need to replace them?
Are they malfunctioning?
Does the air force really fear that without an upgrade we would lose some fight somewhere?

I don't get it.

Is there an enemy anywhere on the planet that have more than 2000 planes?

Are any of them that much better than the f15?

Waste of money in my opinion.



posted on Dec, 14 2018 @ 04:06 AM
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a reply to: scraedtosleep

Because after x amount of hours flown (varies per air frame) the risk to the plane and the pilot grows every time it's flown.
The b-52 for example was engineered for 5000 hours of flight on the airframe, want to say in 2000 the lowest hours buff we had was 10,000.
After passing its mark the amount of work it takes to keep it flying goes up rapidly.

After a certain point its no longer feasible to keep doing.



posted on Dec, 14 2018 @ 04:57 AM
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a reply to: Irishhaf

Wow, I had no idea they had a flight limit.

Thanks for the info.



posted on Dec, 14 2018 @ 06:19 AM
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a reply to: scraedtosleep

You also have to take into account the fact that the F-15 and F-16 were designed at a time when the SA-6 was one of the better defense systems on the market. Now we have air defense systems that can network and detect them from one radar and fire a missile from another location. You can only upgrade older aircraft so much before you have to design their architecture to handle the required cooling and power requirements.

As far as flight hours go, most fighters were originally designed for 8,000 hours and have been extended through various programs to at least 12,000 hours. A few years ago the F-15 fleet had something like 90% of the aircraft at or over their life cycle hours. They also require a longeron replacement and will require new wings under the next life extension.
edit on 12/14/2018 by Zaphod58 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 14 2018 @ 06:24 AM
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Airframes are pretty good if they are flown pretty neutrally.If they are Geed up and stressed those hours fall pretty quickly.Its the systems that go into them that can have problems and Gremlins that affect maintenance.When they have to start stripping out Boneyard wrecks to keep them flying there is a problem.



posted on Dec, 14 2018 @ 06:32 AM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

I take it back.

Not a complete waste of money.

I understand why we need to be ready. Why the world needs to see us as strong.

With this new info from you guys I can see why we need new planes.



posted on Dec, 14 2018 @ 06:55 PM
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a reply to: Blackfinger
True, I have seen commercial airliners with over 100,000hrs on them. Hell I was looking at a 25 year old example just the other day that had nearly 108,000hrs and counting. It will probably hit 110,000hrs before retirement. Even the oldest KC-135's dont have anywhere near that mileage but they operate in a much more stressful environment.



posted on Dec, 14 2018 @ 07:36 PM
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a reply to: thebozeian

In theory the -135s could fly 70,000 hours barring corrosion issues. The big issue hitting them is Depot time. In 1991, a KC-135 averaged 153 days in PDM. By the early 2000s, they were up to 300 days, with some aircraft spending 600 days in the Depot.
edit on 12/14/2018 by Zaphod58 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 14 2018 @ 08:02 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Yea but those 135's I worked at tinker only 8 of em but were built from 1955-58 were some of the cleanest and in the best shape of any airframe I ever worked.



posted on Dec, 17 2018 @ 03:53 PM
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Now the CBO is floating cost cutting ideas, including buying 510 F-16s and 349 F-18s, while canceling F-35 purchases between 2019 and 2028, possibly retiring the F-22 and or B-1, and deferring the B-21.

www.flightglobal.com...



posted on Dec, 17 2018 @ 09:05 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

Sorta how we cut costs on the F-22's by shutting down that line early right?...



posted on Dec, 17 2018 @ 09:09 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

B1 has to go, to expensive for a 33% Mc rate.

As for the b21 after the clown show the 46 has been may not be a bad idea at least till they refine the process some more. Yea I know it's better than in the past but hopefully they work to perfect it.

On a side note just started working for aar, that is a uniquely rough job... Civilian tech data sucks big time.



posted on Dec, 17 2018 @ 09:19 PM
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a reply to: Irishhaf

The B-21 is in great shape actually and moving along better just about any program since Kelly Johnson was around.

Agreed on the B-1 though. Their mission capable rate is coming up but it's cost a multi billion dollar upgrade to do it.



posted on Dec, 17 2018 @ 09:21 PM
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a reply to: Bfirez

It's a great idea to get rid of our biggest club and one of the most advanced aircraft in our inventory in favor of 4th Gen aircraft designed in the 70s.

[/sarc]



posted on Dec, 17 2018 @ 11:36 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

I love the Congressional Budget Office. Predictably dumb as doorknops.
With their cost saving plan the US might as well call it quits.

Buying legacy jets would have made sense ten years ago, the opportunity has long past.
Getting rid of the F22s, buying legacy over F35s and reducing the bomber fleet to B52s until the late 2030 reduces the US to a second rate power in the Pacific.

What should be done?
They need to look at the mission, not at retaining the current force structure. The Air Force cant use two thousand fighter jets to fight China. The Western Pacific theater is not Europe with a runway every three minutes of flying time. The US needs to gear for the threat at hand, the platform of choice to bomb the run in the mil islamists is secondary.

So if there is no political will to allocate the necessary funds to play superpower and confront a nation like China - start with closing legacy fighter squadrons. F-15Cs for home defense – gone. F-16s not in line for replacement with F-35s in the next five years – gone. A-10s – gone. Any COIN aircraft bs - gone. Low intensity drone squadrons – gone. Reduce the F-35A buy by as much as you can get away with. Defer F-35 purchases to allies.
Slash anything else before you touch platform actually usable against China. Its not that complicated.
edit on 17-12-2018 by mightmight because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 18 2018 @ 07:01 AM
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So on the 13th of December it is reported that the CBO says the USAF is spending too little on replacing outdated aircraft and must spend more. Coincidentally the same day it is also reported that the GAO says USN and USMC aircraft readiness rates have steadily declined since 2011 due to worn out equipment, lack of parts and manpower issues. So in a nutshell both reports tend to corroborate a negative long term trend of under funding replacement military aviation assets. However just 4 days later on the 17th of December the very same CBO calls for cuts in existing aircraft systems, or cutting expenditure on new platforms to reduce the not insignificant problem of growing US Govt debt.

They are sending very mixed signals and I dont think it is obvious what they are saying is the actual priority here. I also find the accounting puzzling. I thought the official line with the F-35 now is that it is supposed to cost LESS than a late model F-15 and be comparable in price to an advanced F-16 like Block 70? Admittedly the price on a fleet buy of say 300 or so F-16/70's would drive down its price a bit but surely not by a huge amount less than the F-35? So either they cannot count or there is still something rubbery about the actual cost of the F-35 we dont know. Further there is no mention apparently of other options like ditching most of the F-15 fleet (except the Beagles). This is all quite curious in meaning or intent.



posted on Dec, 18 2018 @ 07:21 AM
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a reply to: thebozeian

The purchase cost of an F-35 is lower than an F-15, but they're still trying to bring down sustainment costs, and the cost of setting up the supply chain is where the program is taking its big hit.



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