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new bomber/gunship

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posted on Apr, 15 2006 @ 03:59 AM
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www.air-attack.com...

Des this make sense to any one? (i understand the article its just the idea of a bomber and an gunship i dont get)

The way i see it they cant use the same airframe for both a new bomber and a new gunship because they need totally different requirements. Unless they are going to design the new gunship as a slower version of the bomber that carries more weapons with a smaller warhead. I like the idea of it being unmanned and carrying a couple of UCAVs though. that would be cool if it could be made to work reliably.

Justin




posted on Apr, 15 2006 @ 04:11 AM
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I think it's a good idea. A Common Airframe design makes a lot of sense. It would be cheaper for both the bomber and the gunship, since they'd both share the same features.



posted on Apr, 15 2006 @ 04:40 AM
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I like the idea too... But the picture in your link looks very much like a stealthy B-2 kinda plane... And Gunships have no good use of having that shape...

[edit on 15-4-2006 by Figher Master FIN]



posted on Apr, 15 2006 @ 04:42 AM
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There's no reason they couldn't. The could put a turret system, with retractable weapons, or something similar. There are ways that you could make a flying wing a gunship design.



posted on Apr, 15 2006 @ 04:47 AM
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But doens't a gunship have to be fast and have good reaction... the B-2 engines shapes (as you explained to me) are everything but that... fast yes, but not manoverable... And that can mean problems in the battlefield...



posted on Apr, 15 2006 @ 05:37 AM
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Originally posted by Figher Master FIN
But the picture in your link looks very much like a stealthy B-2 kinda plane... And Gunships have no good use of having that shape...


that picture isnt related to the article. airattack.com have a few pictures and that picture just means that the article is about a UAV/UCAV.



There's no reason they couldn't. The could put a turret system, with retractable weapons, or something similar. There are ways that you could make a flying wing a gunship design.


please tell me your not suggesting that they put a 40mm cannon, a 25mm machine gun and a 105mm cannon on something like a B2.

i could see that a few elements of the bomber/gunship could be the same but after the basic shape has been decided almost everything would have to be different. they would save money but to save a significanty amount of money they would need to have a lot in common which would mean compromising which would lead to reduced capabilities for both.

justin



posted on Apr, 15 2006 @ 05:42 AM
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Why not? There's no reason they COULDN'T put the same weapons on a flying wing design.



posted on Apr, 15 2006 @ 05:55 AM
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where would it go?

justin



posted on Apr, 15 2006 @ 05:58 AM
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You could mount them in the belly. The B-2 has PLENTY of ground clearance to have weapons mounts sticking out of the belly. It's actually a very tall airframe.

Edit: It would also give you the advantage of more coverage, as they could be in level flight and hit targets on both sides, instead of having to always be in a left hand turn.

[edit on 4/15/2006 by Zaphod58]



posted on Apr, 15 2006 @ 01:42 PM
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Originally posted by Figher Master FIN
But doens't a gunship have to be fast and have good reaction... the B-2 engines shapes (as you explained to me) are everything but that... fast yes, but not manoverable... And that can mean problems in the battlefield...



wellll if you look at the AC-130 gunship then youll see that it doesnt have to be maneuverable or fast. You can loiter and evade radar then thats a 1up on the spectre.



posted on Apr, 15 2006 @ 02:18 PM
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JB3,

Yes and no.

Gunships as they are now are highly outdated and vulnerable designs the whose principal 'safe' (above threat floor) weapons system is the 105mm that can go up to 17-20K or so. Now that they are moving to a high energy 30mm as a replacement for both the 25 and 40, they have some other options for 'cheap kills' (multiple area or point targets not worth the 105) but not many.

Because the system is still largely an overhead player and the combination of auditory signature and NVD will largely make this a no-go-zone in a future where 'MANPADS' fly up from their launch tubes and form a swarm over the defenders.

The concepts they are talking about are similar to one of the FOAS studies and the CABS system as well in that, now that we are down to 250lbs on the GBU-39 and only 150 on the JCM, the question becomes that of WHY GO CLOSER.

If you are trading 30,000 dollar missile shots for vulnerability of 170 million dollar gunships.

With a further 25km ability on the ATL and the notion of the remote UAV aperture search, what you are probably seeing is a netcentric engagement system in miniature.

To use a C-130 analogy, say you have an ATL on (scaled down with FO/Diode technology to a single pallet) with a 'coke machine' of full of powered Viper Strikes on the rear ramp. And outboard pylons carrying a combination of Finder, GBU-39 and JCM hellfire.

With a further cluster of Silent Eyes, either on the UAV or in modified ALE-50 mounts.

For a total of 70 engagements spread out as:

30-40 @ $3,000.00/shot for 25km.
20 @ $15,000.00/shot for 10-20km
8-16 @ $30,000.00/shot for 30-60km

Weighing perhaps 15,000lbs.

Compare this to an AC-130 where you have about 7,000lbs of guns and mount with another 5,000lbs of ammo in a 96 + 256 + 1,500 split onboard but none of them can share a common engagement zone (orbit ballistics coverage as well as threat floor) and the 105 is only firing about 10rpm /max/.

Where initial kills are critical in the first moments of an attack, AT WORST you have a system which can employ all the operator (sighting) stations to deliver probably 3-4 times the total onset rate of similar ranging fires from about 5 times the slant as even the howitzer can manage.

In terms of speed, /ainh/. The original platform mount for the ATL (before it got so bulk-heavy) was actually the V-22, not the C-130. Both have similar straightline performance bands but the Osprey is not only more numerous (able to suffer attrition while using team tactics), it is vastly more capable from mid-low levels in popups and so on.

THIS is how I would envision a 'tactical' level Gunship similar to the old AC-47 style for CAS as we now know it.

OTOH, there are also a LOT of instances (unrecorded) where gunships are used in support of direct action ops, CSAR and occasionally even strike (where that is itself 'escorting the C-130' type forward airfield insertion).

Under these conditions, the ability to go towards 400-500 knots from 300 in a relatively stealthy airframe means you can snap-engage SAM sites as they pop up.

OR stay offset-supporting a battle like Anaconda. In which you are not only a weapons platform. But also a BMC2 and RSTA (battle managemetn and target acquistion) system.

If you can get to the party, stay with the team and even go out to refuel on a fast-jet (20-30K and 350knots) track, you can play in operations where nominally you would not be as useful. Simply because, by the time you get there the fight is a jumble and your 'gun only' (biased sensor coverage) systems limit your ability to act as the airborne coordinator.

Such is what happened on Takur Gar ridge as I recall. The AC-130 was late and the F-15E's were flying from so far out that they dropped a 500lb LGB each and then swung out to the tanker track and then came back and dropped a few more before finally going to guns off a single offset recognition point.

Imagine if you will a BAE-146 or Gulfstream VI sized airframe as a blended wing-body design explicitly tailored for persistent mission coverage AND decent transit speed. While also gifted with the airborne sensor/comms coverage and remote apertures (maneuver to target, not to engage) to avoid problems like a man gone off the back of a helo and the folks back in Washington knowing he's dead on Predator video. But not telling the two-three rescue teams sent in to grab him.

If YOU are there. You can play. And with the bomber baseline for cruise performance allied to small-smartbombs; there is no need to treat ANY target as more than a 'CAS object' which is defined by the precision and reactivity that you hit with.


KPl.


LINKS-
CABS
research.maxwell.af.mil...

Anaconda Airpower
www.afa.org...

Airborne Guns
www.afa.org...

Airborne Tactical Laser
www.aeronautics.ru...



posted on Apr, 15 2006 @ 09:12 PM
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Here...I'm just going to snowball and say it....I have absolutely no idea what you're saying. I think its a good idea cuz you have more surface area on the bottom to mount things. Maybe make it an explosive gunship where it launches hydra rockets and stuff instead of howitzers.



posted on Apr, 15 2006 @ 09:59 PM
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This isn't really my area of interest but would "global persistent attack" mentioned in the link require a particularly robust airframe to support the additional gunfire loads atypical of the bomber "persistent" mission?
I can imagine in my mind some sort of BWB or flying triangle with a belly gun bay/module/snap-in that could retract for landing but the global persistent aspects of the bomber role would lead me to believe that light weight would be paramount in extending time/speed aloft with a not-so-robust "super-leggere" airframe.
Maybe they'd just have a shorter service cycle.
Sad to know someone thinks that a C-130 Spectre isn't quite deadly enough and that a global reach gunship is required - take off from the states or wherever, fly around to the other side of the planet, shoot people dead on the ground and fly back to the states or wherever and watch the football game 'n have a brew. Sad that it is a "need" at all.
It may even be teleoperated if you read between the lines and consider other programs and stuff up Rummy's sleeve in this the New American Century. Do a search on whatever engine you like using NASA and the DART "flub" so called "investigation" - that was no "flub" and could be directly related to this thread.
If you can't find it on your search engine of choice just u2u me and I'll fix you up with the link... I got it somewhere... a hah, here.



posted on Apr, 16 2006 @ 12:01 AM
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Originally posted by truttseeker
Here...I'm just going to snowball and say it....I have absolutely no idea what you're saying. I think its a good idea cuz you have more surface area on the bottom to mount things. Maybe make it an explosive gunship where it launches hydra rockets and stuff instead of howitzers.


No Biggie,

I'm just making some comparisons on value of munition vs. value of platform and then trying to insert them into typical target-set:threat reaction conditions which emphasize how likely it is that BEING THERE to generate initial peril-psychology in an opfor (the Afghan resistance now operates on a '20 minute rule' before breaking contact) not only gives you more of an operational edge in dislodging threats. But also a larger target base to saturate in the first few moments when multiple small strikes could cause more effective attrition than larger weapons.

Anaconda was a hard fight but the number of bodies or even blood trails finally discovered doesn't match the volume of fire reported. It had been a long time since we fought that style of combat (the Ia Shaw comes to mind) as a foolishly airlanded assault with high-low threats on at least two axes around a separated friendly force that could not support itself with artie and organic heavy arms.

Which, to me, tends to indicate that the enemy used a lot of initial fires (maybe even their whole carryload) at first and then mines and boobytraps to make it seem like they were 'there for the long fight if not last stand'.

Then rather quickly decamped (hauling bodies away in that terrain matrix is not going to be a real easy or subtle thing to do), leaving us to beat-flat an empty sack.

The gunship concept of the 1960s was designed around interdicting the HCMT (Ho Chi Minh Trail). Wherein, to support buildups towards high intensity attacks as much as desultory guerilla campaigns in the South, you had to stock up supply and marshalling areas at almost a conventional level.

The result, far from the implied 'bicyles and backpacks' spin that the NVs gave, was an almost fully mechanized BAI campaign for which hordes of trucks were dispatched and lost and the number of rounds (even from 'smart' gunships) was relatively high because they were effectively spraying down large swaths with high rate autofire weapons from very low altitudes.

That kind of thing is not likely today because the difference between conventional and UCW efforts is reducing in the face of overwhelming airpower and irregular fighters in particular are working in cities where their 'weapons and transport' are all around them among the civillian populace.

FOR THAT KIND OF THREAT (1-2 vehicles, 10-20 fighers). You simply don't need masses of direct fire because bombs and missiles of determinatively sufficient mass (100-500lbs) can end any fight they are properly targeted into.

Thus as VK suggests, the firing loads and structural problems of massive tubed-weapon cutouts in the fuselage are not necessary anymore.

Indeed, the real question becomes, 'do you need a (strategic) bomber' airframe design. Because the endurance of smaller vehicles may drive you towards a more genuine medium platform at best (the B-26 vs. B-36 comparison).


KPl.



posted on Apr, 16 2006 @ 12:44 AM
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Originally posted by V Kaminski
This isn't really my area of interest but would "global persistent attack" mentioned in the link require a particularly robust airframe to support the additional gunfire loads atypical of the bomber "persistent" mission?
I can imagine in my mind some sort of BWB or flying triangle with a belly gun bay/module/snap-in that could retract for landing but the global persistent aspects of the bomber role would lead me to believe that light weight would be paramount in extending time/speed aloft with a not-so-robust "super-leggere" airframe.
Maybe they'd just have a shorter service cycle.
Sad to know someone thinks that a C-130 Spectre isn't quite deadly enough and that a global reach gunship is required - take off from the states or wherever, fly around to the other side of the planet, shoot people dead on the ground and fly back to the states or wherever and watch the football game 'n have a brew. Sad that it is a "need" at all.
It may even be teleoperated if you read between the lines and consider other programs and stuff up Rummy's sleeve in this the New American Century. Do a search on whatever engine you like using NASA and the DART "flub" so called "investigation" - that was no "flub" and could be directly related to this thread.
If you can't find it on your search engine of choice just u2u me and I'll fix you up with the link... I got it somewhere... a hah, here.



My problem is that the military misuses persistence if they truly intend it to mean the ability to fly out from CONUS and stay on station with a manned airframe.

Because a B-52 has an 8-10,000 mile range but it is hardly 'persistent' when it gets to X and particularly for non SIOP missions, it may well be unpenetrable /at all/.

Now add to this crew fatigue on 36+hr global-reach missions and the certainty that any TCT reaction is going to be limited at best (to the number of aircraft you can have on station, within weapons if not sensor footprint, in rotating orbits).

And the whole LRSA thing falls down on it's very awkwardness.

OTOH just the simple act of opening a bombbay is like a firehydrant for every square foot of revealed area which the mass of a large aircraft and the presence of cylinder damping mechanisms (on mount) should largely absorb initial acceleration vs. final recoil forces involved. Certainly if a 'fighter' platform like the A-10 can absorb the CONTINUAL accelerations of a system like the GAU-8 (whose cumulative loads are said to be several times that of the WWII 75mm installed on the B-25H), then a bomber sized aircraft should be capable of withstanding single-thrust loadings from a well damped and muzzle blast controlled larger weapon.

Which is again, where things get iffy.

Because I would _never fly_ a 'bomber' (as defined by strategic range footprint) platform to the distance for which even a laser standoff option would give me as own-vehicle safety.

And if you are flying sub-1,500nm radii sorties, it probably makes more sense to simply call it what it is, an A-class airframe which can, simply through the removal of the pilot and associated systems, probably gain back 5-10,000lbs of loading for either fuel or weapons additions.

Certainly, when I think of 'persistent' action, my first thought is that of bailing the ocean with a teaspoon while shining a light at your feet.

You may not even KNOW 'the problem is that big' if your sensor footprint is all of 2ft across.

But if you have a thousand idiots doing the same damn thing, the results can be impressive, particularly if you're hoping to unveil a shark in a tidal pool of minnows.

That said, what I'm really wondering (from the context of your statement) is if we have decided to blow Space Weapons right out of the water with a system that can launch and recover from a permanent orbital docking facility while flying like the Spaceship 1 or the X-38 CRV.

It would make sense that they are trying to 'normalize' human thinking towards this level of 'wait for it to come round and then we pounce!' immediate response capability through things like the (about damn time) Ansari-X win. Especially as displayed to be so simple with the composite thermal performance of an SR-71.

This would bring ALL KINDS of options to the table. Nominally, that you could determine persistence by shot count within a vehicle that needed only 1-2hrs of sustained flight (albeit very high performance). Particularly if that same fuel was also what you used to power beam weapons.

That you could have 'instant on' firepower for imbedded teams of SOF or black ops operating within a country with just a few satellites worth of 'why start there when we can choose any hemisphere to reenter, every 15 minutes' constellational coverage would be a theater CINCs wet dream come true. Minimum political exposure due to troop footprint and transit risks/delay. Maximum emphasis on discrete humint/techint coverage. Total 'non diplomacy dependent' theater as opposed to basing mode access.

Whether such is a wise option to give as a purely national means (U.S. Only) ability I don't know. But it would certainly lop HUGE amounts off the overhead of the AF in terms of airframes and deployment pallets to cover multiple theaters and the training to support the (tactics:logistics argument) movement of same.

As to teleooperation, I seem to recall reading that the Predator which killed the people riding in that 'black SUV' awhile ago was actually being flown from one country over while the targeting was sent back to a U.S. or at least extra-theater source for final button-press.

Given that the link supposedly has a lag of 3-4 seconds, my guess would be that the best way to make it manageable would be to have a very high power graphics generator able to 'auto render' a scene as three-D elevations which THE PLATFORM tracked automatically.

And then send a freezeframe (like a camera phone) back up or down to allow the operator to use his own image recognition capabilities to say "Yes, that's the one." Before sending a track-and-lase command back down to the targeting/weapons release systems of the vehicle in question.

This would keep the bandwidth small as you would not need a realtime datapipe for all that visual imagery _provided_ the aerospace craft was able to keep an MTI trackfile on an in-scene object, after it had left the initial image terrain background.

Such an ability could prove hazardous in terms of perceptual logic of course because if you 3D render a target scene from a given perspective image field and 'assume' the background (which you cannot see from this angle) is analogous simply to shape constructs without proof of rear-side occupation by shadowed LOS objects. Things could get funny when you or a ground team come around the other side and 'there they are' (or even if you don't).

But this is a training type thing and something which the idea of 'mini UAVs from the unmanned UAV' could help resolve.

Even if you don't do it from space as well.

Not entirely sure how this relates to DART (which, of necessity must be a realtime vice framing construct system I would think) unless you're saying that SS Freedom's funding shut down and the 'failure' of the automatic docking program is the result of some kind of uber-conspiracy to intro illegal SWs. If so, let's not.

Anyway, an interesting idea VK. I hope I covered what you were suggesting.


KPl.



posted on Apr, 16 2006 @ 04:32 AM
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Originally posted by justin_barton3
that picture isnt related to the article. airattack.com have a few pictures and that picture just means that the article is about a UAV/UCAV.

That's right, I currently have about 60 standard pics I use for the news articles. The image is an artist impression of the X-47B UCAV-N, which was part of the now cancelled J-UCAS program. The X-47 is still being developed for the Navy. Boeing's X-45,originally developed for the Air Force, could be modified to participate in the Naval program.
Anyway, lessons learnt from the J-UCAS will be used for this new long-range strike bomber/Gunship program.

Here are some interesting related news stories I posted earlier:

- Long-Range Strike: The Future
- US finally looks beyond the B-2 for long-range strike capability
- Pentagon Accelerates Future Bomber Plans - J-UCAS Cancelled



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