MoD Considers Fighter Jet U-Turn

page: 1
4
<<   2 >>

log in

join

posted on Mar, 21 2012 @ 03:01 PM
link   
It appears another UK government about face is on the cards regarding the F-35 variant.

www.ft.com...

I rarely make threads but this has me scratching my head. So much so i've decided to make one and pose a question.

What are we doing? Our fighter aircraft strategy appears a shambles.

What is F-35B (or even F-35C) intended to really do for us?

If we are operating in coalition with the USA, or against a third world nation, why do we need the frontal aspect stealth capability provided by F-35. Could a deck full of F-18F/G or Rafale not act as a meaningful contribution and also air defence for the carrier. In addition the conventional carrier layout would allow an off the shelf AEW platform with range and persistence rather than creating an AEW variant of Merlin?

If we intend going it alone against a major world power is the F-35 likely to be good enough in a world of PAK-FA, J20 and late model Flanker variants fielded in quantity?

To me it seems the following would make more sense:

Build both carriers and fit with EMALS.
Cancel the F-35 buy
Buy Rafale M immediately and integrate Meteor. Train with the french.
Accelerate development of Typhoon into its full multi-role potential , go it alone if need be (keep BAE busy and in business)
Fund development of Taranis including naval variant. (A potential route to a full stealth strike capability, and throws BAE another bone).
Purchase E2-D COTS


Ok, its not cutting edge, but its a rounded capability within realistic limits. We can consider the F-35C COTS later in its development.

Thoughts?

edit on 21-3-2012 by justwokeup because: typo




posted on Mar, 21 2012 @ 03:55 PM
link   
no difference to our past history.
i have just finished reading an excellent book by Eric Brown called 'wings on my sleeve'.
this book mentions a huge aircraft carrier that in the process of being built was scrapped after millions of pounds have been spent.
the fact that it would have worked out cheaper in the long run as it could handle any aircraft didnt matter as the new in power labour government wanted a short term recoup of costs, it was scrapped.

thats the uk government all over.
interested at first then a complete uturn



posted on Mar, 21 2012 @ 05:28 PM
link   
The problem that the UK has is that although the F35 has become a rather expensive programme, the UK has invested large sums in the aircraft development and has a significant industrial work-share arrangement for each F35 manufactured.

It sounds good to dump the F35, but exactly what parts of the French Rafale originate in the UK. How does Rafale or F18 benefit UK industry. They don’t. Not one jot.

In the convoluted word of defence systems, the F35 may be costly, but there are substantial reciprocal industrial benefits.

Regards



posted on Mar, 21 2012 @ 05:51 PM
link   
First, you gotta give your head outa airplanes of all types.Then look up. Yesterday, and not for the first time, there was a thread about a new mach 6 Chinese missile that has been called a "flattop killer." I've got news for you. The aircraft carrier was last centuries' important weapon in a full-scale war situation. Just as the battle wagon was important to the first world war, so was the a/c carrier was to WWII. But that was then, this is now, not any longer.

The new ultimate weapon is an old weapon of sorts, the high ground. Except in the new version it is not a hill or a mountain. It is space, the home of orbital weapon platforms. Nothing on the surface of the earth will be safe from whatever can be launched from on-high, missiles, guided kinetic bombs, rail guns or energy weapons.

Are such systems ready at this time? It is hard to say from what we are told about such concepts, but if you were to study the organization of the US Space Force and equate with those mysterious vehicles that you aircraft enthusiasts like to ignore, the triangles, then you can come up with some possible scenarios to fleshout the possibilities.

I wager that the Chinese mach 6 missile is a response, either true or pure propaganda, to the obvious fact that any ordnance coming from space raining down on their ships is going to be coming in at an unstopable velocity. So they tout a missile that supposedly will at least be a somewhat land-based counter to the ocean ships of that attacker.



posted on Mar, 21 2012 @ 06:05 PM
link   

Originally posted by paraphi
The problem that the UK has is that although the F35 has become a rather expensive programme, the UK has invested large sums in the aircraft development and has a significant industrial work-share arrangement for each F35 manufactured.

It sounds good to dump the F35, but exactly what parts of the French Rafale originate in the UK. How does Rafale or F18 benefit UK industry. They don’t. Not one jot.

In the convoluted word of defence systems, the F35 may be costly, but there are substantial reciprocal industrial benefits.

Regards


I recognise the point that a big portion of defence spending is disguised industrial welfare. However, you have to wonder at what point the defence capability cost of operating this way becomes too great.

Probably when we realise we've spent all the money in the pot and ended up with too few servicable platforms to field an effective force.





posted on Mar, 21 2012 @ 06:15 PM
link   

Originally posted by Aliensun
First, you gotta give your head outa airplanes of all types.Then look up. Yesterday, and not for the first time, there was a thread about a new mach 6 Chinese missile that has been called a "flattop killer." I've got news for you. The aircraft carrier was last centuries' important weapon in a full-scale war situation. Just as the battle wagon was important to the first world war, so was the a/c carrier was to WWII. But that was then, this is now, not any longer.

The new ultimate weapon is an old weapon of sorts, the high ground. Except in the new version it is not a hill or a mountain. It is space, the home of orbital weapon platforms. Nothing on the surface of the earth will be safe from whatever can be launched from on-high, missiles, guided kinetic bombs, rail guns or energy weapons.

Are such systems ready at this time? It is hard to say from what we are told about such concepts, but if you were to study the organization of the US Space Force and equate with those mysterious vehicles that you aircraft enthusiasts like to ignore, the triangles, then you can come up with some possible scenarios to fleshout the possibilities.

I wager that the Chinese mach 6 missile is a response, either true or pure propaganda, to the obvious fact that any ordnance coming from space raining down on their ships is going to be coming in at an unstopable velocity. So they tout a missile that supposedly will at least be a somewhat land-based counter to the ocean ships of that attacker.


If such things exist they are beyond us, and probably beyond anybody we're likely to be fighting anytime soon.

I suspect the DF-21 will see more action in US Navy appropriations discussions than it ever will on combat



posted on Mar, 22 2012 @ 12:10 PM
link   
reply to post by Aliensun
 



I wager that the Chinese mach 6 missile is a response, either true or pure propaganda, to the obvious fact that any ordnance coming from space raining down on their ships is going to be coming in at an unstopable velocity. So they tout a missile that supposedly will at least be a somewhat land-based counter to the ocean ships of that attacker.


You're reading an awful lot into the Chinese.

The problem with their weapon system is that it is already countered by AEGIS II equipped ships with the RIM-66 Block III type missiles.

They more than have the capacity to kill a missile at Mach 6. The AEGIS II radar and tracking systems are designed to scan and provide terminal guidance against ballistic missiles with re-entry velocities well over Mach 10. Various upgrades to the Block III RIM 66 make it more than capable of maneuvering to score a kill against a ballistic missile. Further, the RIM-161/SM-3, now a rather common missile - is designed specifically target orbiting assets (such as ballistic missiles).

It's actually more difficult to intercept a sea-skimming missile at subsonic velocities that jinks and jives when it knows it is being painted by a tracking radar.


The new ultimate weapon is an old weapon of sorts, the high ground. Except in the new version it is not a hill or a mountain. It is space, the home of orbital weapon platforms. Nothing on the surface of the earth will be safe from whatever can be launched from on-high, missiles, guided kinetic bombs, rail guns or energy weapons.


The difficulty with that is simply that of practicality.

All materials for these weapons must be delivered into orbit by some means; currently limited to rockets. That's not very cost-effective by comparison to simply launching a rocket with a warhead on it to begin with (or flying it on an aircraft).

Directed energy weapons get a little more practical when coupled with solar panels and massive power storage arrays... but high-energy electronics tend to require considerable service to remain in operation. So you're looking at another loss.

The carrier will remain a very potent weapon into the future. However, I believe we will see a return of the "battle wagon" as point defenses and directed energy weapons come into more common use. When combined with rail-guns and the computer fire control/guidance systems available today; the cost-effective proposition of a battleship able to lob rounds into orbit (ASAT), and back down onto the ground with 1-meter accuracy (when including guided artillery) at a range of well over 100 kilometers.... is just hard to pass up.

Which is why I see a return of the battleship on the horizon. Even taking a "stock" Iowa design and simply replacing the primary and secondary armaments with rail-guns of relative size would give the ship an unprecedented fleet defense capability when coupled with AEGIS II. Start adding point-defense laser systems for layered defense, and the only thing that ship is going to fear is a torpedo. Even Satellite weapons or systems could be targeted and brought down with the rail-gun replacement for the primary three-barreled 16" Mk VII mounts.

And it could still sport several VLS units with multi-mission missiles.
edit on 22-3-2012 by Aim64C because: edit for 161



posted on Mar, 25 2012 @ 02:51 PM
link   
reply to post by justwokeup
 


The carrier will be sold once created i believe to the French who are requiring another at present, this is the real reason for the CATOBAR redesign, so that their RALAFES can be used on deck, as soon as Cameron got his dirty little fingers on this project it was going to go that way, anything for the extra few pounds to give to his city chums.

He has pillaged this country, removing the nimrods and reducing the armed services and navy, there was a story a few months back, the Russian Navy along with aircraft carrier had taken shelter in our waters during a storm, WE had ONE frigate available to intercept, which was off of Portsmouth, about half a days sail away, WE ARE AN ISLAND NATION, we require the abilities of these services and airframes, not just for military purposes but for search and rescue to.

Sorry rant over, if we ever get to keep the carrier, we might get the one (couldnt upset the Queen, can we david) i doubt the contracts will go to the F35C, it will be french built or licensed Ralfes or licensed built F18's which will go to BAE to build these airframes, or Cameron will go on the cheap and purchase ex usn F18's


Wee Mad



posted on Mar, 25 2012 @ 03:00 PM
link   
reply to post by justwokeup
 


Canada has stated publicly that they are reconsidering the purchaser of the F35 as well...

www.thestar.com...


And that's after taking a lot of flak for going forward with this purchase despite a lot of criticism over it. We don't have the same concerns as you guys across the pond but it still is another nail( maybe ) in the F35 project's coffin



posted on Mar, 26 2012 @ 10:57 AM
link   
Actually, even before the revelation of the Chinese missile, I had considered that the CVN was a dated vessel. You see, a CVN is a highly vunerable asset, that is slow, big and incapable of self defence. In order to be safe a CVN must be protected by a CG and several DDG escorts, as well as an SSN. It needs continual AEWAC, Aerial Jamming and CAP. It is also heavily reliant on the ability to remain undetected (refer to the Battle of Midway in WWII). An advantage which is lost with satelite technology.

Compare this with all these essential components scaled into a single vessel, which has the Anti-Missile capability of a cruiser. Multiple VLS bays and the capability to rapidly launch squadrons of aerial interceptor drones, in the same manner as one might launch a missile. Such a craft would have similar strike capability scaled down to a single vessel, and all the advantages of organic CAP. Such vessels would be cheaper, lighter and more responsive. Able to strike and out-manouver slower carrier groups. I believe the shear size of the carrier, with the resulting slower tempo of naval combat, and it's need for extensive support will be its downfall.



posted on Apr, 2 2012 @ 02:06 PM
link   

Originally posted by Aim64C

You're reading an awful lot into the Chinese.

The problem with their weapon system is that it is already countered by AEGIS II equipped ships with the RIM-66 Block III type missiles.

They more than have the capacity to kill a missile at Mach 6. The AEGIS II radar and tracking systems are designed to scan and provide terminal guidance against ballistic missiles with re-entry velocities well over Mach 10. Various upgrades to the Block III RIM 66 make it more than capable of maneuvering to score a kill against a ballistic missile. Further, the RIM-161/SM-3, now a rather common missile - is designed specifically target orbiting assets (such as ballistic missiles).


Its amazing the "mythological" status ordained on some of these weapons systems well before they have any sort of real operational capacity.



Which is why I see a return of the battleship on the horizon. Even taking a "stock" Iowa design and simply replacing the primary and secondary armaments with rail-guns of relative size would give the ship an unprecedented fleet defense capability when coupled with AEGIS II.


An interesting concept. We toured the Missouri last year at Pearl Harbor. I think it would be tough to install a VLS system on that sucker as big as it is unless you wanted to sacrifice a turret. I also wonder about power generation. But even just the 16" main batteries with rail guns would be a alot of firepower to say the least



posted on Apr, 7 2012 @ 12:09 AM
link   
It seems that the U-Turn might be U-Turned by the US Navy.

Telegraph Link

So now we are building half a carrier, with the rest being a US airstrip?

Jensy



posted on Apr, 7 2012 @ 01:45 AM
link   
reply to post by FredT
 



Its amazing the "mythological" status ordained on some of these weapons systems well before they have any sort of real operational capacity.


I wouldn't say it lacks real operational capacity. It has far more testing and has a much greater dispersion amongst operational units than the Chinese missiles that are supposed to be "carrier killers."

... Unless I'm missing the point of this part of your post.


An interesting concept. We toured the Missouri last year at Pearl Harbor. I think it would be tough to install a VLS system on that sucker as big as it is unless you wanted to sacrifice a turret.


Ideally, you would do a more ground-up redesign taking lessons from the Fast Battleships at the closing of WWII (such as the never-built Montana Class: www.history.navy.mil... ). However, talking a strict mod of the Iowa would have many implications that go beyond the scope of being able to detail in a single post.

However, you could replace both the port and starboard Tomahawk arrays (that previously replaced port and starboard 5" double gun emplacements) with VLS units. Since there are VLS compatible Tomahawks, this is not an issue, and the Magazine with the transportation links to the guns can serve to store plenty of missiles for various mission tasks. Alternatively - the "Peripheral Vertical Launch System" being used on the Zumwalt can be used to distribute launch pods around the deck.

The 5" emplacements would be completely refitted with two-gun (not twin gun) 32 megajoule railguns while the Phalanx systems would be replaced with solid-state phased laser arrays (the phasing of the spectra designed to create molecular shearing forces as opposed to merely intense heat).


I also wonder about power generation.


It really isn't that much of a problem. Steam and turbine powered ships can deliver just as much power as nuclear powered ships. The issue is the generators and the electrical systems. Consolidating all systems so that they run off of electrical power and placing a good pair of nuclear reactors in the sucker with high efficiency steam turbines will provide plenty of power to run even some of the most demanding systems - particularly if you sink considerable portions of the budget into a "battle battery" of sorts (should probably be super capacitors tied to high-current step-up converters; since that will be better than trying to figure out how to manage the logistics of replacing insane battery arrays that have their capacity halved within two years). In either case - power generation shouldn't be too much of an issue unless you're trying to engage a whole damned fleet single-handed... which should only be an issue if you're out of missiles or very stingy about using them.


But even just the 16" main batteries with rail guns would be a alot of firepower to say the least


Indeed. It's difficult to say exactly what power rating they would have - but each 16" Mark 7 firing a Mark 8 Superheavy 2,700 lb round at 820 meters per second is roughly 410 megajoules of awesome. It would have to be taken into consideration that the muzzle velocity of the 16" round is much slower than that of a railgun, and thus the forces applied during firing are dissipated over a much different length of time... but we could probably push it rather safely into the 250 megajoule range with a railgun... perhaps even 400-800 with each gun in the mount if we do not allow for simultaneous firing of the guns (since this is possible with the 16" guns - we can assume the entire structure is able to absorb roughly 1230 megajoules of force at once).

That kind of power makes me shiver. The interesting aspect is that you could vary your target by the mass of the projectile. A lighter projectile would attain higher theoretical velocity and be more apt for taking out orbital assets... or targets on mars, in orbit around Jupiter... whatever... while heavier rounds would actually return to the planet and make a hell of a boom.



posted on Apr, 13 2012 @ 10:49 AM
link   
reply to post by weemadmental
 


You are so so right since the chuckle brothers (cammeron and clegg) have been in power our defence policy has been in tatters why oh why scrap the harriers they are still good enough for america the upgraded nimrods nearly complete at the cost of millions scrapped at the last minute ark royal scrapped with no replacement.
Still they found the money to give their millionaire mates a big tax cut .....be careful who you vote for



posted on Apr, 13 2012 @ 01:36 PM
link   

Originally posted by jensy
It seems that the U-Turn might be U-Turned by the US Navy.

Telegraph Link

So now we are building half a carrier, with the rest being a US airstrip?

Jensy


Quite surprised at the US intervening to stop us making even bigger fools of ourselves. Pleasantly surprised.

I expect the F-35B will probably be heading for the axe.



posted on Apr, 17 2012 @ 02:55 PM
link   
reply to post by justwokeup
 


Cameron has done another U turn and is now ordering the C Variant of the F35

TheTimes.co.uk

Other options

Dailymail.co.uk




It is in this context that the Government is expected to sign off a reversion of the carriers to their original configuration, and the resumption of the procurement process for the F35-B jump jet.

This is much to the glee of Labour, who were in government when the original agreement was signed. It is less to the glee of the taxpayer, who will still be on the line for the £250m cost of reversing the work already done. However there is hope. The savings made by reverting back to the original design could allow both carriers to become fully operational after all.

Although there is the slight problem that HMS Queen Elizabeth is now being fitted to carry helicopters. More costly work to be reversed right there.

Read more: www.dailymail.co.uk...



posted on Apr, 17 2012 @ 07:16 PM
link   
reply to post by weemadmental
 


Not so, at least, not yet. Latest UK news is the the first UK F-35 has flown, it is a B model STOVL variant as it was already being built when the decision to go for the F-35C was made, and it wear a curious two-tone grey version of the RAF's roundel and fin flash not previously seen on anything (I hope this is just Lockheed getting it wrong, as it also wears the US-style intake marking that UK jets never do). However there is nothing about any firm decison yet on which version to finally go for.

And the only thng I would ever believe in the Daily Mail is the date, after I've checked the calendar
As an example there is that silly comment about helicopters at the end, which is pure nonsense. Aircraft carriers have carried helicopters ever since they were invented at the end of WW2 and the new carriers are no different in that respect.

www.flightglobal.com...
edit on 17-4-2012 by waynos because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 10 2012 @ 03:41 PM
link   
Back to the F-35B then [cue circus clown music].

For the farce to be complete the F-35B will probably get binned as part of US budget sequestration leaving us with 2 big carriers with no aircraft that can fly from them.

Its all very sad.



posted on May, 11 2012 @ 11:37 AM
link   
Yes and its just cost us £250 million ...i thought they said we had no money


RAB

posted on May, 12 2012 @ 11:40 AM
link   
Hmmm, the F35B or the F35C, both will be very expensive. Why not buy a small number of Sea Gripen that SAAB are looking at developing. And a bucket load of BAE Taranis UCAV's I'm sure that that will provide the flexibility and potential that the UK needs.

Ten years to get the aircraft carriers built, five for the sea Gripen and maybe ten for bae to find all the bugs in the flight control code of the Taranis :-)





new topics

top topics



 
4
<<   2 >>

log in

join