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RAF last manned planes?

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posted on Oct, 8 2005 @ 03:58 AM
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One question do the F35 and Typhoon, represent the last manned aircarft of the UK's RAF?




posted on Oct, 8 2005 @ 04:06 AM
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With all the current work being done with UCAV's its a tempting thought, but I doubt it.

Back in 1957 it was said the RAF would buy no more manned combat aircraft after the Lightning and a wave of promising combat aircraft programmes were dumped as a result of it. Technology has moved on a hell of a long way since then but I think that the UCAV's future is as a 'force multiplier' for fewer manned aircraft, rather than as a replacement for them completely.

The Typhoon and F-35 will probably serve the RAF until 2040, the way things are going with aircraft service lives but I reckon they will still need replacing with similar manned types. Besides I am still holding out for the RAF to replace its Tornado GR4's with a co produced version of the FB-23



posted on Oct, 8 2005 @ 04:06 AM
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Its hard to say now until UAVs play more of a combat role. Some say the F-22 may also be the last manned "conventional" jet fighter.

Theoreticaly UAVs can be far superior then any human in terms of G loads, reaction times etc.. and cheaper at the same time when you factor in pilot training cost life support ejection seats and all that other stuff humans need.

I would say its a good chance either the JSF or the next gen after that will be the last with human pilots.



posted on Oct, 8 2005 @ 06:34 AM
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I doubt it, the USAF have indicated to Martin-Baker there will always be manned aircraft (Martin-Baker were kinda worried their market was going to simply stop!
).



posted on Oct, 8 2005 @ 06:41 AM
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I think we'll see UCAVs take over SOME roles, but it will be a long time before manned airplanes go away, if ever. If there's one thing the military is good at, it's resisting change. And UCAVs are a HUGE change.



posted on Oct, 9 2005 @ 02:06 AM
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The death of the manned combat aircraft is "imminent".

It's been "imminent" since the 1950's but somehow has still not come to pass.

I am not holding my breath.



posted on Oct, 9 2005 @ 02:15 PM
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Originally posted by Zaphod58
If there's one thing the military is good at, it's resisting change. And UCAVs are a HUGE change.


If it wasn't for wars then we wouldn't have had some of the biggest changes to life. Take the computer for instance, the first real test put to computers outside of labs and in critical roles was in the military. Wars are the result of militaries, regardless of size. Whilst changes on a fundamental level may be resisted a military would welcome anything that would give them an edge of the enemy, surely.

(N.B. not claiming everything here to be true but just an opinion)

Anyway, I hope it isn't the last as I am hoping to join (have a 6th form scholarship [if anyone is applying for one and wants an insight as to my experience and limited tips then feel free to U2U me or preferably use the e-mail funciton]) and really this would be a bit of a blow to a future career in RAF as a pilot for me


[edit on 9/10/05 by Infidellic]



posted on Oct, 9 2005 @ 10:29 PM
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I doubt that manned systems will be completely replaced. UCAVS are equipment and equipment breaks down, always best to have a man somewhere in the system. Now in the way things are moving, I think that soon we will see UCAVs a mix of UCaV types, totally autonomous bombers and those that are remotely piloted (ala Global Hawk)to do things like ground support or SEAD with autonomous aspects but human control in combat. As for fighters, by the time UAV technology is advanced enough to fly like a fighter I believe that direct energy weapons will be so advanced and cheap (energy wise) sso that fighters are replaced by high flying aircraft equipped with direct energy weapons that would wipe out squadrons, so any fighters will be replaced already.



posted on Oct, 10 2005 @ 04:07 AM
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Of course, the way technology advances, you can never say 'never'. But we do always seem to think we are nearer to that time than we really are, certainly Duncan Sandys did.



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