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Retirement of E-4B NAOC?

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posted on Nov, 25 2007 @ 04:33 PM
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Does anybody know the status of the E-4B's retirement? According to Wikipedia, Rumsfeld originally slated the E-4B for retirement by 2012, but apparently Robert Gates has postponed retirement until 2015. I cannot find anything on this decision by Secretary Gates, however.

My take? I agreed with Rumsfeld. We do not need such an aircraft any longer. The President and the NCA no longer needs a national command post, he can deal with a 21st century crisis onboard Air Force One with the support of the E-6B STRATCOM command post. Not to mention that next to the B-2A, the E-4B is the most expensive aircraft in U.S. military history.




posted on Nov, 25 2007 @ 07:16 PM
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We don't need the E-4B to follow the president anymore because they use another aircraft to do the same mission now. However, we DO need NAOC still. NAOC was airborne on 9/11, and it has a conventional as well as a nuclear mission. IF the worst were to happen E-4 would be invaluable. It doesn't follow the president around anymore, because they use a G-IV/V to travel with Air Force One now.



posted on Nov, 25 2007 @ 08:31 PM
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Originally posted by Zaphod58
We don't need the E-4B to follow the president anymore because they use another aircraft to do the same mission now. However, we DO need NAOC still. NAOC was airborne on 9/11, and it has a conventional as well as a nuclear mission. IF the worst were to happen E-4 would be invaluable. It doesn't follow the president around anymore, because they use a G-IV/V to travel with Air Force One now.


What is G-IV/V?

The NAOC offers capabilities that I believe were tailor-made for the NCA in a World War III-type scenario where the U.S. itself is directly at risk. Today, World War III will likely not result in a situation where the entire U.S. is in imminent danger. Even if that were the case, the civil defense system of present-day America would make a system like NEACP or NAOC useless.

I say we give Rumsfeld some credit, retire all four by 2012, save the money to build-up stocks of ammunition, protective equipment, and other military equipment. The Air Force One-E-6B team can do the job now.



posted on Nov, 25 2007 @ 08:37 PM
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The E-6 doesn't perform the same mission as the E-4. The E-6 was designed to communicate with submarines only. It doesn't have the battle staff or communications suite that the E-4 has on board.

G-IV:



G-V:




posted on Nov, 25 2007 @ 10:12 PM
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reply to post by Zaphod58
 


There is clearly a bit of confusion here.

The E-6B does not perform the same mission as the E-4B, which is why I referred to the Air Force One-E-6B team as being capable of fulfilling the same idea that the E-4B was designed for.

In 1998, the E-6B replaced the EC-135 Looking Glass in its mission as STRATCOM airborne command post. Therefore, the E-6B is now the STRATCOM airborne command post as well as the TACAMO platform.

This is why I keep bringing the E-6B into the picture. In 1987, the U.S. "roster" of strategic command and control aircraft consisted of:

- E-4B
- EC-130
- EC-135
- VC-25 (Air Force One)

Four aircraft to fulfill four major roles.

By 2012, we'll just have:

- E-6B
- VC-25

Two aircraft to fulfill three roles. A more cost-effective system tailored for today's threat environment.



posted on Nov, 25 2007 @ 10:23 PM
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Actually we'll have more than that. The G-IV/V does the same mission as the E-4B used to perform by following Air Force One around, and there are rumors of a couple of more command and control platforms coming up.

The E-4B has the advantage of a larger crew, longer loiter time without a tanker, and more commo gear on board. It's still an all around better platform than the E-6B is for the mission. The Navy requirements for the E-6B are actually putting MORE strain on the airframe, even though it's a newer airframe, because of where some of the equipment was placed when they were built.



posted on Nov, 26 2007 @ 12:35 AM
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Originally posted by Zaphod58
The E-4B has the advantage of a larger crew, longer loiter time without a tanker, and more commo gear on board. It's still an all around better platform than the E-6B is for the mission. The Navy requirements for the E-6B are actually putting MORE strain on the airframe, even though it's a newer airframe, because of where some of the equipment was placed when they were built.


Now I know this aircraft you posted pictures of.

From what I remember reading, however, the G-IV/V actually does not do the same mission the E-4B did (its too small to do so anyway). From what I remember, its actually a communications platform so the President can talk with his staff and military forces on a secure line, as well as provide broadcasting capabilities. It lacks the sophisticated command and control equipment the NAOC has.

As for the E-4B, the question is, do we really need all of that? Its an interesting point you bring up about the E-6B being strained as a result of its new mission. Even so, that's hardly a reason, in my opinion, to break our banks and keep these E-4Bs in service.

We also haven't established when the E-4B will actually be retired.



posted on Nov, 26 2007 @ 05:08 AM
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The G-IV won't carry a full battlestaff on board, but ti will give him an escape/emergency response capability.

So you would rather keep flying the E-6Bs with the shorter lifespan and have to spend more money on a replacement aircraft sooner? Me personally I'd rather have the E-4s flying longer and save the money of developing something totally new in a few years.



posted on Jan, 25 2008 @ 08:37 PM
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How many if any of you have ever worked in the WWABCNP system?

There used to be several command level Airborne Command Post (ABNCPs) which consisted of Silk Purse, Blue Eagle, and Looking Glass. These platforms provided ABNCP capability at the command (USAFE, PACAF, SAC) level for our nuclear forces. The Looking Glass was also capable of remote launching the Air Force ICBMs.

There used to be three National Military Command Centers (NMCC). The NMCC was the command post that would direct our national forces (military and civilian) in time of need. The primary is in the basement of the Pentagon, the alternate (ANMCC) at Ft Ritchie, and the NEACP which was the most survivable of the three (it could be base at different locations or go airborne for long term).

The ANMCC was closed in the early 90s which left the NEACP as the survivable NMCC.

The VC-25 is the same model aircraft as the E-4B but they are completely different missions. The VC-25 has some of the same communications capabilities as the E-4B but not all. The E-4B is capable of communicating with our nuclear submarines and has the high powered SHF and EHF SATCOM systems which provide survivable, secure, voice and data communications with our civilian and military forces. The E-4B also has nuclear hardening which should allow it to operate during and after a nuclear EMP event.

When 9/11 occured the E-4B was doing exactly what is was supposed to do, provide a survivable National Airborne Operations Center in case the primary NMCC was compromised. That is the video you saw on CNN.

The other mission the E-4B provided while I was on it was to pick up the National Command Authority (it's base on the chain of succession which is kept current continually) who would then direct our national resources to counter the threat/disaster. This could be the President on down the line of succession dependant upon who remaind in command.

Is the E-4B expensive? YES

Can we do without it? I'm not sure in this day and age with so many other capabilities now gone.

Are you willing to bet our country on it?

[edit on 25-1-2008 by SoDak]



posted on Mar, 17 2008 @ 09:29 PM
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I agree with sodak. I can't even begin to guess the annual costs that the 4 E-4's incur, just in fuel alone. I always see one of them flying around Omaha, practicing touch and go's, in fact I think they should be designated as Nebraska's state bird. From what I understand, is that both the E-4b and the E6-b are capable of doing the "looking glass" mission if need be. But the E6B, was specifically designed to replace the EC-135's and would be the main aircraft for that role. I think that the E4 still provides a valuable platform for continuity of government and the NAOC role. I think that was well demonstrated on 9/11. I personally think it would be a mistake at this time, to retire the E4's. They provide a large stable/survivable platform and can do numerous missions, carry alot of government officials, even provide a simple decoy for the VC-25. That to was somewhat apparent during 9/11, the so called mystery aircraft, the media couldn't identify it, which was to me very surprising , but I guess if you aren't in the "know" or live in Omaha, the general public just assumes that the E4 is a VC-25. I think it provides a good return on investment, in the overall big picture.



posted on Jun, 3 2008 @ 11:50 AM
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Yes I flew both the EC-135C and E-4B.

The EC-135C outlived it's need by 20 years. The E-4A was it's replacement. Only one built before too many questions were being asked.
6 airframes were bought. 3 were dilivered as E-4B's, adding SHF and dropping ALCS. The E-4A was modified into the B configuration. Two were held by Boeing until delivered as VC-25's.

EC-17 died due to cost also.

The E-4B is my favorite office, I have a picture on my desk along with pictures of my LGM-30G launch.

With modern Communications technology, the E-4B is not a smart asset.

I am not saying that airborne command and control aircraft are not needed, and should not exist. Better cheaper ways of doing this exist.

If I can get the data needed to make a decision into an airborne battlestaff, I can get it into a ground station anywhere in the world in a few additional milliseconds.

Spend the money where it's needed.

Old Tech Control Guy



posted on Aug, 5 2008 @ 07:09 PM
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I saw the E-4B at FAFB today. I think we need it. My billet is not one that interfaces with them, (except sometimes when I need to get them something they need), but I know we NEED them.



posted on Oct, 22 2008 @ 02:14 PM
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Do all of you sleep well at night? And want to continue sleeping well at night? Get a real life!!!!! It has many functional missions in support of National Security, National Defense, and Homeland Security



posted on Oct, 22 2008 @ 02:57 PM
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Why not just buy an A380 and whack the whole lot inside!

Loads of room for cooling and upgrades...


Might not go down too well in Seattle though!



posted on Nov, 4 2008 @ 11:17 PM
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reply to post by Anonymous ATS
 


SAC borrowed a JCS E-4A occasionally to do the Looking Glass mission, but SAC opted against trying to fund their own fleet of E-4s (they'd need too many of them to properly carry out the Looking Glass mission). The first three E-4As were nice 'Big White Jets' but the mission suite was mostly just 1950s/1960s-era technology pulled out of EC-135s & re-installed in the E-4As.

The fourth E-4 aircraft (75-0125) was ordered & delivered as an E-4B, and then over a couple years the remaining three E-4As were upgraded to E-4B standards.

I don't think the two VC-25A aircraft delivered in the late 1980s were a part of the original 1970s USAF order for 747 airframes.

By E-17, do you mean the E-10 program??



posted on Jan, 25 2009 @ 02:38 AM
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reply to post by Anonymous ATS
 


(Current RO Guy)
Who would be the command post if NMCC and ANMCC went down then?



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