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High-Flying Troubles - United States Air Force safety record (F-16)

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posted on Jan, 31 2008 @ 12:06 PM
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Sorry, Canada,

I was looking at the total FMS figure that Willard came up with.

The figure posted on F-16.net (operators >USA > ACC) gives 2230 up to and including 1996. This is the total for USAF (all commands).

I don't know if the USAF has purchased any more F-16s since then.

So that would give a higher loss percentage (14.26%) than for the F-15 and also slightly higher than FMS F-16s.

Higher utilization rate could explain the difference with foreign F-16s, and one would expect a higher loss percentage with a single v a twin.

The Winged Wombat

[edit on 31/1/08 by The Winged Wombat]




posted on Jan, 31 2008 @ 12:54 PM
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The USAF received its last new production F-16 in Mach of 2005, the total number of F-16's produced for the US at that time was 2,231. So yes using Canada F's figures the loss rate for USAF Vipers is 14.2%, not significantly higher than the calculated F-15 loss rate or of that of foreign users. So can we conclude that despite the higher use rate in more conflicts due to proliferation and the single engine (among other things); the F-16 is not a "death trap" nor more significantly prone to crash (according to statists) than the twin engined F-15?



posted on Jan, 31 2008 @ 02:58 PM
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Ah, I see what's happened. I used the figure from the aircraft database of serial numbers (same section as the accident database), which gives total USAF F-16 serial numbers as 2505, which is the original figure I used. I think this is the most up to date section, and includes all guard units, geographical commands, material command etc.

Interestingly, in the accident section, I see F-16.net has added a link for 2009 and 2010. Such litte faith!



posted on Jan, 31 2008 @ 03:19 PM
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Originally posted by WestPoint23
So can we conclude that despite the higher use rate in more conflicts due to proliferation and the single engine (among other things); the F-16 is not a "death trap" nor more significantly prone to crash (according to statists) than the twin engined F-15?


Hmmmm interesting. What Westpoint has said holds true that even with these faults what stat do we find? Well one that is right in the same realm as the 15. Hence the 16s fault not creating any worse problem then the 15E horizontal stabilizer issues.

Now could we speculate the reason for the figures being the same or close to it be the operating environment? I'm digging a hole here but could we compare loss rates for commercial aircraft (ie. 737)and see how they compare to the 16 and 15? Also we have the fact of time that each aircraft has been in service and how that effects the numbers in even comparing the 15 to the 16.

We could go on and on I think. The fact is I think that iskanders concern over wiring is founded as it is found in every aircraft and it has been a problem in many airframes from helos, space, civil and military. So really I think I have come to the conclusion that the F-16 isn't the only aircraft to kill its own pilots per-say but the TWA-800 flight did the same as well and many others.

BUT if iskander wants to argue that the 16 is the worse offender then we need to actually track down the number of flights that this has happened to in the realm of aviation like the 737 and 747 that even has a short that opens a cargo door in flight? Its happened and the point I'm making is that as long as wires are used it will happen.

My point being that with the amount of research that we have all done to come to this point I personally am at a point where numbers and facts do the talking. I saw a number and posted on the last page that 183 16s from 1978-1982 had wiring issues. Iskander you have posted crashes that with out final crash reports can't be proven to be wiring. I'm not saying its not possible for some to be a wiring caused crash but that at this point this plane you call a killer has the same ratio other planes in service.

The only reason also that you may feel attacked by this post is that you are the one who has made these statements of it being worse then other aircraft. Myself with my research that is all laid out here has shown that it is not in fact what you have claimed?

..... Now this is where ATS rocks.

Do you disagree? Have I miss interpreted what you have said in you "original" statement? Is the facts about the F-5 not being in the running wrong? Is the wiring not the issue?

If yes to any of these then you can respond to them hence the beauty of the forum.

[edit on 31-1-2008 by Canada_EH]



posted on Jan, 31 2008 @ 10:21 PM
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So It makes sense but the final breakdown so you can see it is as follows.
USAF F-15 - 1138 built and 137 lost = 12% losses
USAF F-16 - 1245 built and 318 lost = 25.5% lossesp


Even after taking out the error percentage, the picture is still pretty clear.

F-16 with its single engine suffered twice the crashed then F-15 with twin engines, unless I’m not reading the numbers right.

Engine flame out on the F-16 leaves only 1 option, ejection. Bird strikes, FOs, all spell a certain doom for the F-16.

Since it’s a full FBW pane, loss of power leaves the pilot with out a redundant flight control system which is available on other FBW planes, and again ejection is the only option.

Wire chafing can not be lamed solely on the workmanship. QC is an essential part of any manufacture process, and if the original design does not take the manufacturing process into the account and the works are pushed to keep the line moving, somebody will start overlooking and hiding QC problems in order to keep their job.

Twin engine F-5 could have been developed into a much more robust and capable fighter, but Pentagon MIC politics pushed Vipers funding through the revolving door, and its not a surprise that the majority of F-16 early backers went on to work for General Dynamics.

That’s why they call it a revolving door.



posted on Jan, 31 2008 @ 10:38 PM
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Originally posted by iskander
...unless I’m not reading the numbers right.


Umm… yeah you're reading the wrong number, look at the other posts. The number of F-16's built for the US was 2,231 not 1,245. That's just how many are currently still in service. Anyway the correct figures are as followed, 12% loss for the F-15, 14.2% for the F-16. No real significant difference even when you consider the number of conflicts each airframe has seen and the fact that the F-16 only has one engine and all that other jazz you mentioned. Fact is the F-16, according to the statistics, is no more significantly unsafe to fly than the F-15 is. Hence not a "death trap" or any other name one wished to apply.



posted on Jan, 31 2008 @ 11:06 PM
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"Engine flame out on the F-16 leaves only 1 option, ejection. Bird strikes, FOs, all spell a certain doom for the F-16."
"Since it’s a full FBW pane, loss of power leaves the pilot with out a redundant flight control system which is available on other FBW planes, and again ejection is the only option."

That's a crock. The F-16 has an emergency power unit (powered by hydrazine) that provides power to the hydraulic system and the emergency electrical bus in the event of an engine failure or loss of the main and standby generators. The Block 25 and 30/32 F-16s have 7 separate sources of electrical power for the FBW system. The Block 40/42 and 50/52 have 6. Any single source alone is sufficient for electrical power. F-16s have been recovered with failed engines on numerous occasions. I've had to do it myself due to a broken oil line. Pilots are required to practice flameout approaches (power in idle and speedbrakes deployed to simulate loss of thrust). Flameout DOES NOT equal bailout.

USAF Class A mishap rates through the end of 2007 (Class A = $1,000,000 damage or loss of life; does not necessarily mean the loss of an aircraft). Rates are per 100,000 flight hours and do not include combat losses:

F-16: 3.82 / 305 aircraft lost
F-102: 13.69 / 259 aircraft lost.
F-104: 30.63 / 170 aircraft lost.
F-106: 9.47 / 120 aircraft lost.
A-7: 3.19 / 107 aircraft lost.
F-5: 8.82 / 40 aircraft lost.
F-15: 2.42 / 112 aircraft lost.

All numbers are from the USAF Safety Center at Krtland AFB, NM and are for the lifetime of the aircraft.

The F-16 IS NOT to this day killing pilots due to some deficiency of design or manufacture. A couple of those happened early on. The rare F-16 pilot deaths today are due to stupid pilot tricks like flying a good airplane into the ground or into another airplane.
The F-5 is not a better airplane than the F-16; nor was the F-20, otherwise someone would have bought it. I've got over 500 hours in the F-5E/F and over 2000 hours in the F-16C/D (all Blocks). The F-5/F-20 could never do what the F-16 can. Just trust me on that.
The F-16 is not the only USAF fighter that has crashed due to flight control anomalies. When I was an F-15 pilot, I personally watched an F-15 go out of control immediately after takeoff. The pilot didn't get out. Another friend also lost his life in an F-15 due to a flight control anomaly.
There are tons of other errors and misconceptions regarding "facts" in this thread but it would take a lot to point those out and it just ain't worth it.

Over and out!



[edit on 31-1-2008 by fulcrumflyer]

[edit on 31-1-2008 by fulcrumflyer]



posted on Feb, 1 2008 @ 03:48 AM
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That's a crock. The F-16 has an emergency power unit (powered by hydrazine) that provides power to the hydraulic system and the emergency electrical bus in the event of an engine failure or loss of the main and standby generators.


I beg to differ. I’ll clarify. As we all know bird strikes occur at low altitude during takeoff and landing.

While emergency systems do provide a slim safety margin, they are simply not a substitute for the reliability that a redundant system provides.

I don’t have the full stats, but just a quick and random look at bird strikes and power loss on F-16s show a clear pattern of pilots ejecting as soon as they can.


4 May 1995:
A F-16B from Rygge Airbase had a bird strike, crew ejected successfully.
Serial: 307 | Squadron 332| CN: 6L-7

23 March 1992:
A F-16A departing Banak Airbase lost its lost its engine in flight due to a turbine failure. Pilot Ejected safely.
Serial: 278 | 332 squadron | CN 6K-7

6 June 1989:
A F-16 caught fire in a hangar and where wrecked beyond repair in the fire, no injuries.
Serial: 685 | squadron 331 | CN 6K-57

5 July 1988:
A F-16A crashed at M�rsvik fjorden, possible bird strike. Pilot died.
Serial: 300 | Squadron: 334 | CN 6K-29

12 June 1985:
F-16B departing Banak Airbase had technical problems in the control system right after takeoff, crew ejected at low altitude, only one survivor.
Serial 303 | Squadron: 332 | CN 6L-3

13 November 1984:
A F-16B from Rygge Airbase had an engine failure before takeoff, pilot and "passenger" ran away with no injuries.
Serial: 301 | Squadron: 332 | CN 6L-1



www.f-16.net...


The F-16 IS NOT to this day killing pilots due to some deficiency of design or manufacture. A couple of those happened early on. The rare F-16 pilot deaths today are due to stupid pilot tricks like flying a good airplane into the ground or into another airplane.


Anyway you look at it all of the data on crashes other then pilot error and mid air collisions are due to engine/FCS failures.

Most occur during take off and landing, and other then the engine, another major issue is the weak landing gear.

Current day snippets from F-16.net


F-16 Mishap News




A blown nose-gear tire caused the Oct. 17 crash of an F-16 fighter during takeoff roll at Hill AFB, Utah, according to Air Force officials investigating the incident.

A crash that destroyed a $19.2 million F-16 over the summer was caused by the failure of two quarter-inch bolts, Air Force inspectors said this week.

Investigators have determined engine failure led to an F-16 crash on the Melrose Bombing Range in New Mexico March 21. The aircraft (#87-0330), assigned to the 27th Fighter Wing at Cannon Air Force Base, N.M., was destroyed. The pilot experienced minor injuries after ejecting from the aircraft


Catastrophic engine failure caused the April 3 crash of a U.S. F-16DJ fighter near Misawa Air Base, Air Force investigators concluded.

Investigators have determined engine failure led to an F-16 crash over the Gulf of Mexico Dec. 13. The aircraft, assigned to the 27th Fighter Wing at Cannon Air Force Base, N.M., was on temporary duty at Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla., at the time of the accident. The pilot experienced minor injuries after ejecting from the aircraft.


www.f-16.net...

These are just snippets from PAGES of reports, I simply picked page 9 at random, while there are a total of 23 pages of crash reports there. Other then pilot error all of them have the same theme repeating over and over, catastrophic engine failure, fires, landing gear collapse, jammed throttles, loss of power to flight controls and FCS malfunctions.

It’s simply a pattern, and it’s happening to this day because reports date to this day.

Here’s how simple it really is, page 1, this year.


Pilot jettisons fuel tanks to save F-16
Sunday, January 27, 2008

An F-16 at Cannon Air Force Base was forced to jettison its external tanks after takeoff on Saturday when the jet experienced a technical malfunction.

Several factors caused F-16 crash in Italy
Friday, January 18, 2008

An Air Force report blames the September 18th, 2007 crash of an F-16CG on a wide range of factors, including weather, plane malfunction and pilot action…

According to the report, a drip ring in the device that tells the aircraft its trajectory froze as the plane flew through thunderstorms over the base. The result was that plane computers continued to receive the same information, even as it climbed in altitude and lost air speed. The incorrect information also fooled the sophisticated aircraft from correcting itself in time to prevent an uncontrolled spin.


www.f-16.net...

That pretty much puts it right back to the category of wire chafing instrument failure crashes.

The lack of basic, analogue backup instruments leave pilots blind when “sophisticated” systems “freeze”.

That was the main point of the law suit against General Dynamics. Instrument panel short circuited due to wire chafing, pilot lost orientation and crash into a mountain.

That was 1982, and this is 26 years later. If that’s not systematic, I don’t know what is.

edit:exit bracket


[edit on 1-2-2008 by iskander]



posted on Feb, 1 2008 @ 04:02 AM
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I'd say fulcrumflyer was talking about engine failure in anything other than the takeoff phase. If you hit a bird on takeoff and your engine goes, and you don't have enough energy to turn around and land, then there isn't much you can do about it other than step out. It's just bad luck.

As for the other reasons, I don't see anything that isn't common to other aircraft. Wire chaffing, CFIT, collision, the only thing that you can say for sure is that a catastropic failure of the F-16's engine is bad. But this is true of any single engine aircraft. And we still haven't seen anything to suggest that the F-16 is fundamentally worse than any other single engine aircraft (or even multi-engined aircraft for that matter).



posted on Feb, 1 2008 @ 07:39 AM
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Originally posted by iskander
Even after taking out the error percentage, the picture is still pretty clear.

F-16 with its single engine suffered twice the crashed then F-15 with twin engines, unless I’m not reading the numbers right.


Your figures are wrong and I agreed with the new stats that westpoint and willard put forward since that the figures where based on the 1245 built as oppose to 2,231 actually built which changes the figures to.
USAF F-15 - 1138 built and 137 lost = 12% losses
USAF F-16 - 2231 built and 318 lost = 14.2% losses

Also willard and I have stated the same thing. The research done has come to the understanding that the rate has not shown anything in huge differences. Engine failure has been a issue but the operating environment is so hazardous in the military that it seems that all figures seem to be in the same range. The danger of flying a performance plane.

Iskander you keep posting accidents that I have looked at as well. The thing is that no one is saying that these accidents don't happen and in fact as my figures have shown before the number of accidents that happen due to PE on the 16 and even the 15 is huge. personally if the research has shown me anything is that it is more likely that an accident is more likely to happen due to a pilot error.

[edit on 1-2-2008 by Canada_EH]



posted on Feb, 1 2008 @ 07:51 PM
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reply to post by Willard856
 



I'd say fulcrumflyer was talking about engine failure in anything other than the takeoff phase.


As per f-16.net records a lot of engine failures accrued well into the flight as well, but statistically it is the takeoff that presents most of the danger.


If you hit a bird on takeoff and your engine goes, and you don't have enough energy to turn around and land, then there isn't much you can do about it other than step out. It's just bad luck


It’s not just bad luck. Depending on the plane, its capabilities and its load out, it’s a matter of life and death. Particular to this situation, K-36D-3.5A is still being evaluated by Lockheed Martin/Boeing for use in F-22s and F-35.

Twin engine fighters were able to return and safely land after bird strikes. Single engine did not.


As for the other reasons, I don't see anything that isn't common to other aircraft. Wire chaffing, CFIT, collision, the only thing that you can say for sure is that a catastropic failure of the F-16's engine is bad.


Such severe engine problems are simply not acceptable. When birds catch on fire during taxing and even in the maintenance bays, there’s a problem.

I’ll address what that problem really is in detail later in the separate post.


But this is true of any single engine aircraft. And we still haven't seen anything to suggest that the F-16 is fundamentally worse than any other single engine aircraft (or even multi-engined aircraft for that matter).


While it is true for all single engine aircraft, but the story with F-16 has a fundamental difference, and I will address it in a separate post.



posted on Feb, 1 2008 @ 08:04 PM
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reply to post by Canada_EH
 



Your figures are wrong and I agreed with the new stats that westpoint and willard put forward since that the figures where based on the 1245 built as oppose to 2,231 actually built which changes the figures to.


Actually I used your figures. If they are wrong, then they are wrong.


Engine failure has been a issue but the operating environment is so hazardous in the military that it seems that all figures seem to be in the same range. The danger of flying a performance plane.


That I will disagree with because this issue goes back to high performance piston engines of WWII, their tolerance thresholds and life expectancy. A whole lot of reliability verses performance was gathered, and other then technical aspects, most importantly logistical aspects were very carefully considered.

Once again I will address this issue in depth in a separate post so it all will be compiled together, since lately I’ve been hit with “excessive quoting” penalties and I sure don’t want to be keep getting slapped on the wrist just for trying to keep the dialog concise and comprehendible.


personally if the research has shown me anything is that it is more likely that an accident is more likely to happen due to a pilot error.


This is my position on pilot error. My example is the I-16. Being the first monoplane in history, in order to achieve its high performance, the very stability issue that we are discussing here has direct relevance to the very first monoplane fighter in the world.

It was “snappy” to say the least, but extremely maneuverable, and pilots simply said that in the hands of a well trained pilot it was able to hold its own to the next generation ME-109s that it encountered during the opening days of the war.

The problem was that a great majority of experienced pilots were killed in the bombardment/strafing of the air fields, and less experienced pilots took the brunt of the Luftwaffe aces.

Again, the relevance of this I will bring up in a dedicated post.



posted on Feb, 1 2008 @ 10:34 PM
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Originally posted by iskander
Actually I used your figures. If they are wrong, then they are wrong.


Please read the thread rather then just assume that those figures haven't changed. I said those figures have changed and stated that in replies to you twice already so the blame is not on me for making a simple mistake which I already posted a correction to. Its your fault for not reading the thread properly case closed.

I can discuss things and issues but being told I said something (2-3 times now you've tried to use that figure) is more then I care to correct or continue to correct.

Heck did you even read the post before you replied 3 up?

Now that I've gotten that out of the way for the last time I hope I want to understand something. Is you argument at this point changed from the original post or is it just more narrow/clarified? As I see it you are arguing the type of accidents that are happening to the F-16 and the fact that you find them to be worse then say the F-15 (easy comparison). Cause at this point with the stats we have established the plane is not any more dangerous to its pilots then the F-15. I want to make sure that we continue to understand the point being discussed or focused on. If it is the fact you are un happy with the types of accidents that we have to shift from that fact of defending the F-16s crash ratio compared to the F-15 and instead focus on types of crashes.

I'm actually looking forward to hearing what you have to say about the I-16 vs the Me-109 and how it ties into PE. But I want to make sure that it doesn't turn into another huge debate like this one lol
Anyways I must say I'm enjoying this and learning as well at the same time and hopefully we can continue in this manner.

[edit on 1-2-2008 by Canada_EH]

[edit on 1-2-2008 by Canada_EH]



posted on Feb, 1 2008 @ 11:11 PM
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reply to post by Canada_EH
 



so the blame is not on me for making a simple mistake which I already posted a correction to.


You’re jumping the gun on this one, I never blamed anybody. I just said that if the numbers are wrong, then they are, so take it easy.


Its your fault for not reading the thread properly case closed.


You know, in any discussion, it’s a lot more productive to concentrate on the topic at hand in stead of finding who’s at fault for what, because it will always end in useless bickering.

If it’ll make you feel better that’s it’s my fault, so be it, it’s my fault.

The same applies to the rest, so I’ll skip to the relevant;


Is you argument at this point changed from the original post or is it just more narrow/clarified?


I don’t have an argument; I simply state the available facts, and I will be focusing further on the details and not just the numbers. That takes time.


As I see it you are arguing the type of accidents that are happening to the F-16 and the fact that you find them to be worse then say the F-15 (easy comparison).


Again, I’m not arguing, it’s common knowledge that two engines are better then one. As for F-15, it’s in a completely different class then F-16, so I can not compare them directly. I can only judge them by how they accomplish their intended purpose.


Cause at this point with the stats we have established the plane is not any more dangerous to its pilots then the F-15.


So all of the information about inherent F-16s flaws is just a smear campaign that spans over decades? Let’s get real here, article and reports questioning F-16s safety pop up with remarkable regularity.


I want to make sure that we continue to understand the point being discussed or focused on. If it is the fact you are un happy with the types of accidents that we have to shift from that fact of defending the F-16s crash ratio compared to the F-15 and instead focus on types of crashes.


My point is that F-16 was the wrong choice from the beginning, and it was further compromised by repeated changing of its role.

F-15 fleet is aging rapidly as we all know, F-22s are incredibly expensive, and F-16s will simply not fill the gap.


I'm actually looking forward to hearing what you have to say about the I-16 vs the Me-109 and how it ties into PE.


Different generation fighters, it’s the tactics that were important. I’ll get to it in detail with time.


But I want to make sure that it doesn't turn into another huge debate like this one lol Anyways I must say I'm enjoying this and learning as well at the same time and hopefully we can continue in this manner.


Roger that, same here. I’ll take some time with this.



posted on Feb, 1 2008 @ 11:34 PM
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reply to post by iskander
 


Sorry iskander I didn't word that last post right and it was easy to miss read it. its not arguments as I said but its the focus or point you try to make is what I'm getting at. The reason I focused on the stats is that I said before they were incorrect and that they no longer need to be brought up as to which is right. With that behind us and the established 14.2% as the percentage of F-16s lost we more on
.

The issue that I'm bringing up is not that the 16 doesn't have issues. The issue is that its number of crashes is higher as there is more of them flying then the 15. The number of 16s lost in is the same percentage as the 15. So if you have more planes and more crashes because of the number of planes which plane are you going to see in the news more? Now some of that smear/news etc is right and there is issues with the 16 but are they more PE then MF?

The issue of it being the wrong plane from the beginning is interesting and I don't think you can blame General Dynamics as they fulfilled what it was the USAF fighter mafia wanted, which was to pioneer the use of FBW and other tech systems. Also out of interest what do you view as its repeated changes of role?

I think we do need to define more still what your issue (wont use argument) is with the F-16s. As I pointed out if the issue is with its development we have talked about it. If its that it crashes lots we have talked about that. I understand it can be a mix of these things and that development can impact crashes but I don't understand what it is that we disagree on.

[edit on 1-2-2008 by Canada_EH]



posted on Feb, 2 2008 @ 01:15 AM
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iskander,

Well, mate, I have to say that I am thoroughly confused.

On the one hand you say that single engined aircraft are intrinsically more unsafe than twin engined types. OK, no argument there - the reason air forces around the world continue to use single engined fighters are many fold, and valid such as purchasing cost, operating cost, spares holding, airframe size etc. That's a decision every air force has to make from whatever is available at the time and within their budget restraints.

However, you then say that you are going to post some information regarding I-16 v Me 109. I certainly look forward to that, but I cannot understand how that can relate to a single v twin discussion when they are both singles.

So, forgive me, but just as I did in my first post on this thread, could you please define the specific point you are trying to make.

Finally you mentioned that the F-15 fleet is aging and that F-16 is not a suitable replacement. I can but agree, but the stated replacement for F-15 is the F-22, not the F-16. The F-16 fleet itself is aging and is intended to be replaced by F-35s. Or were you referring to the original purchase of F-16s and F-15s in a high/low mix ? So I'm really not clear on what you are saying here.

The Winged Wombat



posted on Feb, 2 2008 @ 01:22 AM
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I want to insert a comment right here about this thread. I like the new tone of civility here. Since I'm so NOT an aviation expert, it is interesting to read the opinions and see the data. It is a lot easier when there's no flame wars to distract me.

Very good presentations by everyone.



posted on Feb, 2 2008 @ 01:44 AM
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OK, iskander,

Upon re-reading your statement regarding F-15 / F-22 / F-16, I think I understand what you're saying.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but you're saying that during the remaining life of the F-16 (that is - until replaced by F-35) the F-16 is incapable of filling any capability gap that might result from F-15 not replaced (say 1 for 1) by F-22.

I cannot imagine that any aircraft in the 'low' category of a high/low mix was ever intended, or designed to directly replace its 'high' counterpart - they were designed to work with, not instead of.

I don't see that anyone can blame the designers of any aircraft (in this case the F-16) for any capability gap that might result from the operator's failure to replace its 'complementary' role counterpart in a suitable fashion. At least the US has the advantage that most other air forces don't of being able to afford a high/low mix, and that in such circumstance the 'low' element is able to step up and take some of the load.

The Winged Wombat



posted on Feb, 4 2008 @ 11:48 PM
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While putting together another reply, I was looking for some stuff in the garage, and found an old USAF DLI pamphlet back from 1964, so while I’m gathering info for this thread I’ll put up a quick post about the pamphlet.



posted on Feb, 5 2008 @ 05:50 AM
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Hi guys,

Just a couple of thoughts here.

Has anyone done a percentage loss of the F-15E ONLY in comparison with the F-16? My thinking is that if there is little diffence in the comparison loss rate with the F-16 (and the F-15A-D versions) then it's probably not a case of a design/build quality problem. However given the similarity in tasking between what a lot of the F-16's are now doing in the way of CAS and the Strike Eagle, if there is a big difference then this warrants closer examination.

Secondly, has either Wombat or Willard (or for that matter anyone else who wants to jump in here) got any numbers on the losses of Mirage III's in RAAF service? There could be a rough comparison to be made with the F-16 here. Both were/are operated with some versions dedicated to air superiority tasks, whilst others were tasked as "mud movers". Both were single engined fighters. And lastly Both were rightly or wrongly cited as having a fairly high "bang out" rate. I'll even try checking up with a very experienced RAAF maintainer who spent many years working the Mirage to see if they had any issues regarding out of the ordinary wiring harness chaffing. As I said it's a rough comparison but it would be interesting to see if there is a common trend with these single engined fighters or not.

LEE.



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