posted on Aug, 13 2013 @ 03:22 PM
Originally posted by Zaphod58
South Korea has announced that they are going to acquire four tanker aircraft, with bidding to start in 2015. The two most likely contenders will be
the Boeing KC-46, and the Airbus A330 Multi-Role Tanker Transport. Korea has one of the most powerful air forces in the region, but no tanker
This will allow them to loiter fighters over a group of islands that they've been disputing custody over with Japan. Oh good, something to cause
more tension in the area, because China is doing that on her own already. Korea needs them, so they don't have to rely on the US as much, but does
the region really need more tension?
South Korea plans to acquire four tanker aircraft for induction into the air force by 2017.
Seoul's Defense Acquisition Program Administration said bidding will commence in February 2015, with a contractor to be selected by October 2015,
according a report carried by official news agency Yonhap.
Seoul estimates the value of the programme to be over won (W) 1 trillion ($900 million), the report adds.
Four tankers at 900 million is a pretty good deal. South Korea isn't going to have to pay any R & D which is good for them.
On another note, the KC-46 had its Critical Design Review recently. Even though it was 700 million over budget in the development phase (which boeing
had to fork up because of the fixed cost contract), Its estimated to be ahead of schedule and expects to deliver the first aircraft to the Air Force
in 2016, instead of 2017. All in all, 18 tankers should be delivered to the air force by the end of 2017. That being said, the air force is the number
1 customer, so South Korea getting their four by 2017 might be a stretch.
One of the Pentagon's largest weapons initiatives, the contract for just the U.S. is 52 billion bucks. Over 179 aircraft, the per aircraft cost is
around 290 million. Boeing expects the total lifetime deal with just the U.S. to hit around a 100 billion dollars. So loosing 700 million in the R and
D phase is peanuts.
The final report for the Critical Design Review, or CDR, hasn't been released, but following the review Boeing released a statement stating:
"Boeing believes the review went well and initial feedback from our customer has been positive. Final approval by the USAF is anticipated in the near
future." If Boeing does get CDR approval, it'll be able to move onto tanker production, something Boeing and the Air Force eagerly anticipate. More
good news? Boeing is scheduled to deliver the first 18 out of 179 tankers in 2017. But Boeing has said that if there aren't major issues reveal in
the CDR, it expects to deliver the first completed tanker by the end of 2016. Considering the Air Force has said the KC-46 tanker is its No. 1
modernization priority as it replaces the aging KC-135, this may be especially good news for Boeing's reputation, which in the past hasn't fared as