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Australia to buy 24 F-18 Super Hornets from Boeing

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posted on Mar, 6 2007 @ 02:18 AM
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News Source




Australia will buy 24 F-18 Super Hornet fighter jets, made by Boeing Co., and related equipment in a deal worth up to A$6 billion ($4.6 billion), the government said on Tuesday.



Canberra has been in negotiations with Boeing for the purchase of the F/A-18E/F aircraft, radar systems and weapons countermeasures as an interim combat system before the arrival of up to 100 F-35 Joint Strike Fighters (JSF), worth more than A$15 billion.




"Australia remains fully committed to the JSF. But the government is not prepared to accept any risk to air combat and strike capability during the transition to the JSF," Defense Minister Brendan Nelson told reporters.


24 of these aircraft should add more air power to what currently Australia has at present.

To spend big amount while waiting for JSF could mean that it will still take quite long time to acquire the JSF.




posted on Mar, 6 2007 @ 04:07 AM
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How they think this will be a temp replacement for the F-111 which is being grounded in 2010 I do not know.

Hell, even the JSF won't replace the F-111. It's a shame that Australia couldn't spend $6 billion on the B1 or something similar. I wonder how much it would have cost to lease some jets instead.



posted on Mar, 6 2007 @ 04:18 AM
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Humor me this.

What does Australia need with dedicated bombers?








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posted on Mar, 6 2007 @ 04:22 AM
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Originally posted by SteveR
Humor me this.

What does Australia need with dedicated bombers?


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The exact same reason they need a couple of hundred fighters... which would be...... invasion from the Mauri islands and the Kiwis



That money would have been much better spent safeguarding Australia's fresh water supplies.

[edit on 6/3/07 by kilcoo316]



posted on Mar, 6 2007 @ 04:29 AM
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Well I assume Australia originally bought the F-111's for the ability to strike Indonesia. I don't think Australian policy has changed much in regards to its perceived need for that ability.

Plus it's nice to have a bomber that can reach Darwin to Amberley for example. Australia doesn't have a huge string of Airbases and it's a very large place.



posted on Mar, 6 2007 @ 08:26 AM
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People should really try to find threads that have already been started on this topic. I'm seeinf a new one each week and it gets tire some going from one to the next plus we are slowly losing the string of info.



posted on Mar, 6 2007 @ 10:14 AM
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Of course, if the Aussies had been able to buy TSR2.....



posted on Mar, 6 2007 @ 03:01 PM
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Originally posted by wtftrauma
How they think this will be a temp replacement for the F-111 which is being grounded in 2010 I do not know.


It's not, don't listen to the politicians, they know damn well the F-35 or even the Rhino II was never designed to replace something like the F-111. The only thing (besides a bomber) in the US inventory which could attempt to do that is the Strike Eagle, yet Australia did not show any interest in updated F-15E's.

Either their policy and therefore need of a long range - heavy strike aircraft has changed, or they plan on purchasing long range PGM's such as the JASSM-ER-XR or Tomahawk.


[edit on 6-3-2007 by WestPoint23]



posted on Mar, 6 2007 @ 06:32 PM
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Just out of interest, the range on an F-111 Aardvark is about 2800 nautical miles, which I think was one of the main reasons that the Royal Australian Air Force bought them.

The range on an F-15E is about 2100 nautical miles.

The range on a Su-34 Fullback, however, is 2800 nautical miles.

If range was a particularly important they might want to replace it with a Su-34 as a bombing-oriented aircraft considering the geographical conditions of Australia. However, since I don't know the per-unit costs of either of the two considerable aircraft I'll stay away from saying which one is actually a better idea. Which I'd probably do if I had the per-unit costs anyway.



posted on Mar, 6 2007 @ 08:25 PM
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Those are "weaponless" ferry ranges, an F-15E holds more fuel than a Su-34 and a fully fueled F-15E (CFT+ Drop Tanks) has a greater un-refueled ferry range than the Fullback (~3,100nm) and a greater combat radius. Furthermore the F-15E has a substantially bigger external payload capability over the Fullback. Not to mention other factors such as raw performance figures, avionics/sensors, weapons, training, supply, maintenance etc...



posted on Mar, 6 2007 @ 08:44 PM
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I reckon Australia would do well with this.

What do you think?






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posted on Mar, 8 2007 @ 06:31 AM
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Apparently the F-111 was initially purchased to deliver an aussie nuclear payload to our region, however cabinet decided to dump the idea in the late sixties and use the bomber for conventional purpouses only. The F-111 has also been used for extensive spying missions in our region so has multiple roles. The RAAF needs a new aircraft that can be used to spy on the region as well as act as a long range bomber. In any futire conflict they could be used to disrupt supply lines, and to assist in keeping shipping lanes open. A long range heavy bomber is a strategic requirement for aussie defence needs. Maybe the USAF can lease us a few 2nd hand B1's?

There's been much speculation by defence analysts in the local media about how rushed the deal was, perhaps being done without due considertion.

[edit on 8-3-2007 by JamesinOz3]



posted on Mar, 8 2007 @ 07:09 AM
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There's been much speculation by defence analysts in the local media about how rushed the deal was, perhaps being done without due considertion.


That would be the understatement for the year so far!

Senior government and defence bureaucrats say the entire decision was made by the defence minister, AGAINST the official advice given to him. So we have to ask what is this decision really saying? On the one hand the government says everything is swell with the F-35 program. And on the other the minister says he will not take any chances with our air superiority. Does he not trust the program or is he aware of hidden issues with the F-35?

This is important as a $6 billion outlay could affect the number of F-35's (or what ever alternative, if/when the Libs get elected out of office) bought down the track AND leave us with a two tier airforce. This situation was PRECISELY why the F-35 was chosen as a "single type for all" in the first place. So it seems we now get the least desirable outcome for the RAAF and a price tag including the FA-18 HUG of around $24 billion. How many F-22's, UCAV, and updated F-111's could this money have bought?

Once again another "small town"minister who got blinded and suckered by a slick marketing campaign from the "big rich guy next door" (US that is) and his own political ambitions.

LEE.



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