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F-35, Hawks, AWACS, T50, CK1, E3A. Help my poor brain

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posted on Feb, 17 2012 @ 11:06 PM
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Air craft are hurting my poor brain. I'm trying to fit this area into my mental maps, but I realized my primary problem here is I don't understand the types of military aircraft and air support tech.

I need a basic crash course on the types and ranges. I get told fighters are bombers and bombers are cargo carriers, and I don't have a freaking clue about refueling. You get the idea. I understand that things might be hybrids, but I need to understand the basic functions so that I can understand why a hybrid. I need to understand what each type is even meant for. For example, what are the primary uses of fighters?

My end goal here is a basic evaluation of how this fits in with counterinsurgency, and how the diversification of purchases of the less developed militaries is developing as a joint effort at bootstrapping and cooperative purchasing for political and military support. I'd also like to come out with some idea about the limitations of tech escalation and the human brain.




posted on Feb, 17 2012 @ 11:13 PM
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Just look at the first letter, called a “designation”:

Current Designations of U.S. Military Aircraft
· D - UAV Control Segment [2002-today] (see note 1)
· G - Glider [1978/86-today] (see note 2)
· H - Helicopter [1962-today]
· Q - UAV [1997-today] (see note 3)
· S - Spaceplane [1988/89-today] (see note 4)
· V - VTOL/STOL [1962-today] (see note 5)
· Z - Lighter-than-Air [1962-1965/67, 1978/86-today] (see note 6)
· A - Ground Attack [1962-today]
· B - Bomber [1962-today]
· C - Transport [1962-today]
· E - Special Electronic Mission [1962-today]
· F - Fighter [1962-today] (see note 1)
· K - Tanker [1962-1977/85] (see note 2)
· L - Laser-Equipped [1997-today] (see note 3)
· O - Observation [1962-today]
· P - Maritime Patrol [1962-today]
· R - Reconnaissance [1962-today] (see note 4)
· S - Antisubmarine Warfare [1962-today]
· T - Trainer [1962-today]
· U - Utility [1962-today]
X - Special Research [1962-today] (see note 5)

Hopefully that is what you are looking for.



posted on Feb, 17 2012 @ 11:23 PM
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Going from your list in the title:
F-35 = Fighter
Hawk = Nothing, that’s a name for an RAF aircraft as far as I know.
AWACS= Airborne Warning and Control System, but that is not the plane it’s the system that is on the plane. The Plane itself is called an E-3, with E= Special Electronic Mission (aka Electronic warfare).
T50 = Trainer
CK1 = Transport Tanker
E3A = This is the proper designation of your above mentioned AWACS, Variant A:

E-3A
Production aircraft with TF33 engines and AN/APY-1 radar, 24 built for USAF later converted to E-3B standard, total of 34 ordered but the last 9 completed as E-3C.[30] One additional aircraft retained by Boeing for testing,[30] 18 built for NATO with TF33 engines and five for Saudi Arabia with CFM56 engines.[30]



posted on Feb, 17 2012 @ 11:33 PM
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I guess Hawk is a Trainer.

www.raf.mod.uk...


I started looking around on the RAF site, and as soon as I got to the non-trainer aircraft, the jargon ....argh.

The Typhoon for example is for "peace support" and I have no idea what that is supposed to mean with this type of aircraft.

Found this, so I guess I'll start by deconstructing some jargon with "peace support."

www.paramountgroup.biz...


Peacekeeping is often regarded as a Land Forces based activity.


Yes, this is my essential problem. I can see army, and even naval support, and air support....but when getting to multi-billion dollar fighters against civilian integrated militants things start getting fuzzy for me.

Or what is it that NASA might do with the purchase of military aircraft? That one has my curiosity up.
edit on 2012/2/17 by Aeons because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 18 2012 @ 12:12 AM
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reply to post by Aeons
 
here is the e3a www.e3a.nato.int... as far as the hawk goes that could be the global hawk as seen here www.airforce-technology.com... for the F35 www.f35.com... and the t50 trainer www.airforce-technology.com... not to be confused with the Russian T50 fighter abcnews.go.com... the the AWACS is a early warning system airborne en.wikipedia.org... not to be confused with the air plane's for reference only not full list or active air craft en.wikipedia.org...:AWACS_aircraft I do hope this helps in reducing the confusing air craft terms and designations



posted on Feb, 18 2012 @ 12:14 AM
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reply to post by defcon5
 


With one caveat...the F-117. It is no where near a fighter in terms of military missions, but yeah the designations you posted are correct.



posted on Feb, 18 2012 @ 12:26 AM
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Another piece of jargon. "Chaff and flare countermeasure dispensers" which I take it to mean that you launch something that makes missiles target the "chaff" or "flares" instead of the jet/plane/helicopter. Or mask the aircraft.

en.wikipedia.org...

en.wikipedia.org...


An active protection system is a system (usually for a military application) designed to prevent sensor-based weapons from acquiring and/or destroying a target.



"Smart Defense"

www.nato.int...


In these crisis times, rebalancing defence spending between the European nations and the United States is more than ever a necessity. The other Allies must reduce the gap with the United States by equipping themselves with capabilities that are deemed to be critical, deployable and sustainable, and must demonstrate political determination to achieve that goal. There must be equitable sharing of the defence burden. Smart defence is NATO's response to this.


Yes, I caught that already. You aren't doing a very good job of selling the idea to the populace, now are you?


www.nato.int...

This has some background and zone considerations about what each area's perspective is.

In the Canadian perspective section it mentions the lay out of 240billion for refurbishment of equipment. Canada always backloads these figures, and then reconsiders them and then backloads them again in every two years. So the main sum never actually gets splashed out.


It also goes into nations coordinating for coherent specialization. I caught that, but you might want to explain to our nation of eggheads what that specialization is supposed to be so that they might buy into it. Lacking context.
edit on 2012/2/18 by Aeons because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 18 2012 @ 01:40 AM
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Originally posted by Aeons
I guess Hawk is a Trainer.

www.raf.mod.uk...


I started looking around on the RAF site, and as soon as I got to the non-trainer aircraft, the jargon ....argh.

The Typhoon for example is for "peace support" and I have no idea what that is supposed to mean with this type of aircraft.

Found this, so I guess I'll start by deconstructing some jargon with "peace support."

www.paramountgroup.biz...


Peacekeeping is often regarded as a Land Forces based activity.


Yes, this is my essential problem. I can see army, and even naval support, and air support....but when getting to multi-billion dollar fighters against civilian integrated militants things start getting fuzzy for me.

Or what is it that NASA might do with the purchase of military aircraft? That one has my curiosity up.
edit on 2012/2/17 by Aeons because: (no reason given)


all you need to know about the typhoon is that its a multi-role air dominance fighter. meaning its meant to be good at going toe to toe against other fighter jets, and also be able to drop a payload of bombs on targets.

when they say that it can be deployed in the full spectrum of air operations, from air policing, to peace support, through to high intensity conflict, they mean the typhoon can be armed to blow stuff up whether it be in the air or on the ground.

Air policing and peace support is just ways of saying we use this to kill bad guys in a nice and fluffy way.



posted on Feb, 18 2012 @ 02:12 AM
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reply to post by Aeons
 


Sounds like something women usually say to me when I go on about military stuff


In all seriousness, if you really want to learn this stuff, you need some practical experience. I suggest playing a decent video game that takes modern military confrontation seriously. I suggest WinSPMBT since it is free to download and in depth. This game is actually really good because you can pick any military from like, 1946 to 2020 and fight any other military (my favorite was always Russia vs US marines in 2012). It has many configurations of units and equipment, and it is easy to learn what units are useful for what purposes when you shove them into combat in this simulated environment.

And yes, I realize that video games are not real. I also realize that most critics of video games as instructional tools tend to be too old to even be of the gaming generation.



posted on Feb, 18 2012 @ 11:18 AM
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I have no objections to the use of video games for learning. It is rather clear that some of them have been developed for exactly that purpose. What's harder? Getting someone fit, or shoehorning knowledge of combat into their heads? Having people coming in or primed during a conscription with some basic knowledge is invaluable.

I've avoided them for the last decade mainly because I want to hyperfocus into a game with strategy, and as a mother of young children I haven't been able to do that.

Thank you for the game link. I'll look at it.

I've noticed that the very technical sometimes don't realize there are ways of making some concepts into microwaveable products. I don't know enough about this subject to package it up yet.
edit on 2012/2/18 by Aeons because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 18 2012 @ 11:53 AM
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Interceptor - Aircraft designed to intercept high altitude bombers. (Obsolete concept). Climb performance is the dominant characteristic e.g. EE Lightening, Starfighter, Delta Dart. No intended to combat fighters.

Fighter - generic term for an aircraft intended to destroy other aircraft in aerial combat. (F-15, F-16, SU-27, Typhoon)

Theatre Bomber - Intended to deliver large air to ground payloads but only over medium distances. (Negligible capability against other aircraft). Only working example I can think of is SU-34 and the stillborn FB-22. The SU-34 is actually quite handy in air to air so it almost resists classification.

Fighter Bomber/Swing Role - A fighter platform with a highly rounded ability to carry and deliver air to ground ordinance, conduct anti ship operations and perhaps surveillance/reconisance. Most current serving US fighters with the exception of the F-22 fall into this category. As does the Rafale, Gripen and sundry Russian export variants.

Strategic Bomber - Intended to deliver extreme air to ground payloads over intercontinental distances (B-52, B2, TU-160)

Tanker - Aircraft dedicated to acting as an airborne refuelling station for other aircraft. (Can be large derived from a commercial jet or other smaller aircraft re-routed into tankers. Eg C-130 tanker. (Some fighter/bombers can also be role configured to buddy tank, that is refuel one fighter from another).

Maritime Patrol Aircraft - Aircraft designed to patrol large areas of open ocean and roled for anti-ship, anti-submarine and search and rescue operations. P-3 Orion, Nimrod, P-8, Atlantique

EW warfare aircraft - Specialised for electronic attack and jamming of enemy ground defences. EA-18 Growler, EA-6B.

AWACS- Airborne radar for surveillance. Come in different sizes and abilities, from helicopter mounted (Sea King MK7, through carrier borne E2, to The large airliner sized platforms usually being thought of when the word AWACs is mentioned.

Those are simplified categories. Hope it helps a little.

edit on 18-2-2012 by justwokeup because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 18 2012 @ 12:12 PM
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That does help!

It is the fighter that I'm having the hardest time with, and I think it is because it doesn't fit the current warfare model or the developing "insurgency" conflict.

Most of the countries with them aren't at war, and don't look to be dog-fighting anytime soon. That there is a distinct preference developing for fighter hybrids for delivery over the next decade is very interesting to me.

This would seem to suggest there may be the expectation that there will be an increase in in air fighting after 2020.

So there are two types of warfare being expected to escalate - tribal based non-state warfare, and an escalation in high tech state warfare. With the likelihood of high-tech state warfare working and then creating an escalation in non-state warfare. See, once you see the pattern you have to ask - who are the actors?



posted on Feb, 18 2012 @ 12:14 PM
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I have a specific question about the F-35 helmet - have the problems with VR glasses/helmet mounted display been overcome? At one point people would take these off after using them, throw up and pass out. I assume that if these are being integrated into fighting aircraft, this problem has been fixed.



posted on Feb, 18 2012 @ 12:23 PM
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Originally posted by Aeons
That does help!

It is the fighter that I'm having the hardest time with, and I think it is because it doesn't fit the current warfare model or the developing "insurgency" conflict.

Most of the countries with them aren't at war, and don't look to be dog-fighting anytime soon. That there is a distinct preference developing for fighter hybrids for delivery over the next decade is very interesting to me.

This would seem to suggest there may be the expectation that there will be an increase in in air fighting after 2020.

So there are two types of warfare being expected to escalate - tribal based non-state warfare, and an escalation in high tech state warfare. With the likelihood of high-tech state warfare working and then creating an escalation in non-state warfare. See, once you see the pattern you have to ask - who are the actors?


Thats simply down to the practicalities of design. Fighters can be re-roled into other things. You can turn a fighter into a fighter bomber with equipment added post manufacture. It'll then quite happily drop guided weapons on insurgents or kill tanks, sink ships.

However, there is little you can do to turn a bomber into a fighter. The performance just won't be there, by design. The compromises will already have been made in other directions.

In a world of sinking budgets the one trick pony is going out of style. Thus fighters are developed first and then pushed into other roles.



posted on Feb, 18 2012 @ 01:10 PM
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How well do billion dollar hybrids do against a swarm of much lower tech one-trick ponies? Wouldn't that be the main question in an airfight between manufacturing based developing countries and first world countries whose manufacturing base is in those countries?



posted on Feb, 18 2012 @ 01:33 PM
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Originally posted by Aeons
How well do billion dollar hybrids do against a swarm of much lower tech one-trick ponies? Wouldn't that be the main question in an airfight between manufacturing based developing countries and first world countries whose manufacturing base is in those countries?


The answer to that will be in simulations already run but not publicly available.

Theoretically the swarm with cheaper aircraft idea has some viability but I have my doubts.

He who has the superior performance generally gets to dictate the terms of the engagement. It would be a woefully negligent 5th generation fighter pilot that allowed himself go get into a close tangle with an excessive number of slower, less able, aircraft.

The quality vs quantity argument will continue to run long into the future. If I had a definitive answer I'd be a highly paid consultant, not an aircraft enthusiast on a conspiracy website :-)



posted on Feb, 18 2012 @ 03:16 PM
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I think youll see this scenario play out in the Hormuz straits....
There will be massed attacks on the US fleet if hostilities break out......
Massed speed boats with rockets and torpedoes, and massed flying boat type aircraft which are Irans "secret weapon of stealth"
really just a kind of airboat with stubby wings....but perhaps effective if used in swarms....we really dont know yet.....as the weapons for US fleet defense are sort of new too......
And massed missile swarm used as anti shipping artillery basically.....
It will be up to the navy to keep them out of the sides of their ships.....



posted on Feb, 18 2012 @ 03:51 PM
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Originally posted by ownbestenemy
reply to post by defcon5
 


With one caveat...the F-117. It is no where near a fighter in terms of military missions, but yeah the designations you posted are correct.


More than one caveat....the U2 was designated "Utility" to conceal its true recon mission and objectives. In regards to the F-117, the designers utlized the "F" designation to draw fighter pilots into the Night Hawk program. They knew fighter pilots would never be interested in flying an aircraft with a "B" or bomber designation.



posted on Feb, 18 2012 @ 07:49 PM
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One thing that may help is that the different designators can apply to the same basic airframe outfitted for different missions. You see this most often in the "F/A" designation, such as an F/A-18 where it's the same airplane. With air-to-air armanent it's a fighter. With air to ground armanent, it's an "attack" craft. Compare this to an A-10 warthog, which is strictly ground support, an "attack" aircraft.

Here's another, the C-130:

C-130: "Cargo"
KC-130: Tanker
A-130: Gunship
E-130: Electronic countermeasures, command and control
T-130: Training, e.g. "Fat Albert" belonging to the Blue Angels squadron.
etc..

Here's a complete list of all the C-130 variants.

To further complicate matters, the planes often have a suffix designator as well. For example, and F/A-18A is a single seat plane. An F/A-18B is a dual seat plane. The "Super Hornets," which are a little bigger and meaner than the originals, carry the F/A-18E and F/A-18F suffixes.
edit on 2/18/2012 by schuyler because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 18 2012 @ 09:43 PM
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Originally posted by stirling
I think youll see this scenario play out in the Hormuz straits....
There will be massed attacks on the US fleet if hostilities break out......
Massed speed boats with rockets and torpedoes, and massed flying boat type aircraft which are Irans "secret weapon of stealth"
really just a kind of airboat with stubby wings....but perhaps effective if used in swarms....we really dont know yet.....as the weapons for US fleet defense are sort of new too......


In that scenario, it's pretty simple to know what will happen. Attack helicopters and F-18's and ground-based F-16's and F-15's from nearby allies will sink them like a video game. The aviators will compete to see how many "points" each can rack up before the other.



And massed missile swarm used as anti shipping artillery basically.....
It will be up to the navy to keep them out of the sides of their ships.....


The missiles are the only serious threat. A swarm of 600 mph missiles is much more dangerous than a swarm of 60 mph speedboats.


The answer to that will be in simulations already run but not publicly available.

Theoretically the swarm with cheaper aircraft idea has some viability but I have my doubts.


A swarm with cheaper aircraft is potent when the swarm is made up of AA and SA missiles.

edit on 18-2-2012 by mbkennel because: (no reason given)




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