Why is the F-35 replacing the A-10?

Discuss the F-35 Lightning II
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smsgtmac

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Unread post30 Apr 2014, 04:42

RE:

Questionable Logic: Unacknowledged Risks Riddle Air Force Push to Retire A-10
Tony Carr / April 28, 2014 / JQPublic

http://www.jqpublic-blog.com/questionab ... tire-a-10/


Wow. That was so awful I had to look the guy up. A retired C-17 driver working on a JD. Explains all the fact-free appeal to emotion. The comments thread, of course, repeats much of the usual CAS mythology. I left my two cents worth.
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smsgtmac

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Unread post30 Apr 2014, 04:52

mk82 wrote:Point taken Spazinbad and Lookieloo. But Senator McCain's ideas are still puzzling...you would think that he would be in favor of new technology and new ways of doing things that will minimize the risk of combat air crew being shot down and becoming POWs given his experiences as a POW in Vietnam.


What you have to ask yourself in trying to understand McCain, is: "What's in it for McCain?"
all-about-mccain.jpg
It's All About McCain


If the Navy had just sucked it up and made him an Admiral like his Daddy and Granddaddy, we would never have had to deal with the 'Senator' in the first place.
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XanderCrews

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Unread post30 Apr 2014, 05:41

I don't question McCains service, and he was once a pretty well regarded man and even once a well regarded politician (think about what an accomplishment that is). He fell fast though. I like her, but someone told me that "from now on any question McCain has about how someone does their job should be answered with 'Sarah Palin?'" :D

He is grand standing.Remember too that McCain is from the American Party that is for a larger government and more government spending. (thats the joke) Apparently saying "no" and being a fiscal hawk is very confusing.
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spazsinbad

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Unread post30 Apr 2014, 05:45

Heheh. I know something about sons of admirables in the navy.... :devil: But that is in the long past now.

McCain is a politician playing politician games AFAIK. He must be doing something right to be in that job so long; but of course there are many other excuses for that longevity - senility probably is not one of them. Just to hear/see McCain do his political speech thing at the standing up of the YUMA F-35B squadron last year was enough for me to know McCain is just another politician looking to the next election.
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Unread post30 Apr 2014, 05:55

mk82 wrote:Point taken Spazinbad and Lookieloo. But Senator McCain's ideas are still puzzling...you would think that he would be in favor of new technology and new ways of doing things that will minimize the risk of combat air crew being shot down and becoming POWs given his experiences as a POW in Vietnam.
I've said as much myself, and can only surmise that from his point-of-view, the US military will always find a way to be the best so long as it receives more funding than the next five military powers put together. This fungible perspective is popular with budget-hawks but ignores development/sustainment realities. In short... the kind of people who think nine women can make a baby in one month.
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Unread post30 Apr 2014, 08:28

I find this whole argument for the A-10 akin to the arguments in the 1930s when some wanted open cockpit biplanes rather than going to closed cockpit monoplanes. Sure, the earlier generation (be that the biplanes or the A-10) were effective in their day. However, paradigms change. What was done in one era (such as the GAU-8) is no longer the only or even the best way to do the job. People need to move on. In this case, remember the A-10 as a great platform that did a good job (and I am sure there is no-one here who won't argue that it's gun was an awesome piece of equipment), but its day has come and it needs to exit the stage and let newer, better platforms take on the role in new ways.
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Unread post30 Apr 2014, 08:52

gtx wrote:In this case, remember the A-10 as a great platform that did a good job (and I am sure there is no-one here who won't argue that it's gun was an awesome piece of equipment), but its day has come and it needs to exit the stage and let newer, better platforms take on the role in new ways.
Not so sure I'd even do that. The more I read, the more I realize that, while it would have been an awesome platform in Vietnam, advances thereafter made it something of self-licking ice-cream-cone. Its particular mission-set probably wouldn't exist if the USAF didn't need something for all these slow-a$$ planes to do.
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Unread post30 Apr 2014, 14:24

lookieloo wrote:The point appears to have sailed over Maus' head... The A-10's role has already been largely taken by heavy bombers and other aircraft with PGMs; and the fact is, if every last Warthog disappeared tomorrow, the USAF would still be able to support ground operations just fine.


The point is not lost on me: the USAF's latest attempt to divest itself of A-10s is rightly called into question by Congressional leadership and a fair number of independent analysts because of its past attempts to do the exact same thing. Add their escalating estimates of predicted "savings," and the specter of a threat to their precious F-35 program, the well informed are skeptical of the USAF's plan at face value. Then the USAF uses lame arguments like "the F-16 flew 80% of CAS sorties," but conveniently leaves out the A-10s carried half the ord used in these missions (figure it out: A-10 carried heavier payloads and had an increased loiter time, reducing the number of sorties required vs. F-16) doesn't instill confidence in decision makers. If the argument truly is about survivability - which it isn't, then the USMC should retire its fleet of AV-8Bs now, because they are dead meat if they try to fly its CAS doctrine. Yea, and while the USAF artificially tries to keep its A-10s high, the Navy F/A-18s do the gun runs.
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Unread post30 Apr 2014, 14:27

These personal attacks on John McCain are disgusting.
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XanderCrews

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Unread post30 Apr 2014, 16:12

The point is not lost on me: the USAF's latest attempt to divest itself of A-10s is rightly called into question by Congressional leadership and a fair number of independent analysts because of its past attempts to do the exact same thing. Add their escalating estimates of predicted "savings," and the specter of a threat to their precious F-35 program, the well informed are skeptical of the USAF's plan at face value. Then the USAF uses lame arguments like "the F-16 flew 80% of CAS sorties," but conveniently leaves out the A-10s carried half the ord used in these missions (figure it out: A-10 carried heavier payloads and had an increased loiter time, reducing the number of sorties required vs. F-16) doesn't instill confidence in decision makers.


I would like to see some sources if you don't mind. Because I was told by my mission planner friend that about 20 percent of the ordnance was deployed by A-10s amongst the fighter class, and that paled in comparison to say, the B-1 that hangs around and just drops all day long.

Maybe I'm confused, I have heard lots of different numbers.

If the argument truly is about survivability - which it isn't, then the USMC should retire its fleet of AV-8Bs now, because they are dead meat if they try to fly its CAS doctrine.


Yes and the USMC, isn't trying to replace the harrier or anything. Last I checked the harrier was the L-class ship fixed wing, if they had many other types that could operate from L classes, it would be an option to explore further. But since we aren't awash in STOVL machines... I guess the Harrier is it.
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SpudmanWP

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Unread post30 Apr 2014, 16:42

mk82 wrote:Hey Cola, still two points of contention with your reply. The beauty of LJDAM.....GPS/INS guidance to get the bomb into the basket for laser spot acquisition quicker...minimises the laser acquisition and course adjustment time further. SDB II would be even better (multi spectral seeker head).


Mid/High altitude CAS is getting more accurate and safer for the guy on the ground.

Case in point, LSDB (Laser SDB)

It takes the current SDB and adds the laser seeker from LJDAM. The laser will make the bomb more accurate and the SDB size makes it more appropriate (and safe) for CAS.

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Unread post30 Apr 2014, 18:27

SpudmanWP wrote:
mk82 wrote:Hey Cola, still two points of contention with your reply. The beauty of LJDAM.....GPS/INS guidance to get the bomb into the basket for laser spot acquisition quicker...minimises the laser acquisition and course adjustment time further. SDB II would be even better (multi spectral seeker head).


Mid/High altitude CAS is getting more accurate and safer for the guy on the ground.

Case in point, LSDB (Laser SDB)

It takes the current SDB and adds the laser seeker from LJDAM. The laser will make the bomb more accurate and the SDB size makes it more appropriate (and safe) for CAS.

Image
http://www.flightglobal.com/blogs/the-d ... -contract/


Weren't there issues with SDB flight time in CAS situations or have they addressed them?
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SpudmanWP

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Unread post30 Apr 2014, 18:56

It was a Time of Flight issue that was addressed in Block9 for SDB. Basically the original SDB was designed to maximize range using it's glideslope and Block9 gave it the option of a high-speed dive rather than a glide.

http://www.sldinfo.com/the-308th-armame ... i-block-9/

SLD So the core program provided capability against fixed targets, but changing demands required a modification of the capability?

Lt. Col. Kato: They stopped using SDB I in July ’07 in the AOR for several reasons. First of all, some of the operations weren’t in urban environments where low collateral damage mattered. In fact, some of the missions needed a bigger boom, so 500 and 2,000-lb JDAMs were better weapons of choice for the targets that they were prosecuting. Secondly, because it’s designed as a stand-off weapon, it takes a long time to get there because the way it was developed is that it was intended to maximize its glide slope so that it could get the maximum range.

And there was the question of time to target. The pilot says, “Okay, released.” And the guy on the ground says, “Okay, how long?” And he says, “Four and a half minutes.” And the guy says, “What?” In a CAS fight, that’s not good, that’s not the best option if you’re the guy on the ground having to clear air space while troops are likely in contact with the enemy for that long.

Lt. Col. Kato: Yes, you can see why that was not particularly optimum. And really, that’s the genesis of the Block 9 software. So for Block 9, it’s totally a software change. It requires no physical changes to the weapon at all.

So we started that development effort about a year and a half ago and what it’s designed to do is to minimize the time of flight and give you that JDAM-like kind of capability in terms of getting there faster, again still with the accuracy of the current system and low collateral damage. Also, it expands the release envelope down to 10,000 feet. So those are the two main things that go into Block 9.

We completed all of our flight testing in January 2010.
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Prinz_Eugn

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Unread post30 Apr 2014, 19:34

SpudmanWP wrote:It was a Time of Flight issue that was addressed in Block9 for SDB. Basically the original SDB was designed to maximize range using it's glideslope and Block9 gave it the option of a high-speed dive rather than a glide.

http://www.sldinfo.com/the-308th-armame ... i-block-9/

SLD So the core program provided capability against fixed targets, but changing demands required a modification of the capability?

Lt. Col. Kato: They stopped using SDB I in July ’07 in the AOR for several reasons. First of all, some of the operations weren’t in urban environments where low collateral damage mattered. In fact, some of the missions needed a bigger boom, so 500 and 2,000-lb JDAMs were better weapons of choice for the targets that they were prosecuting. Secondly, because it’s designed as a stand-off weapon, it takes a long time to get there because the way it was developed is that it was intended to maximize its glide slope so that it could get the maximum range.

And there was the question of time to target. The pilot says, “Okay, released.” And the guy on the ground says, “Okay, how long?” And he says, “Four and a half minutes.” And the guy says, “What?” In a CAS fight, that’s not good, that’s not the best option if you’re the guy on the ground having to clear air space while troops are likely in contact with the enemy for that long.

Lt. Col. Kato: Yes, you can see why that was not particularly optimum. And really, that’s the genesis of the Block 9 software. So for Block 9, it’s totally a software change. It requires no physical changes to the weapon at all.

So we started that development effort about a year and a half ago and what it’s designed to do is to minimize the time of flight and give you that JDAM-like kind of capability in terms of getting there faster, again still with the accuracy of the current system and low collateral damage. Also, it expands the release envelope down to 10,000 feet. So those are the two main things that go into Block 9.

We completed all of our flight testing in January 2010.


Cools, thanks. Good to know.
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Unread post01 May 2014, 01:51

maus92 wrote:
lookieloo wrote:The point appears to have sailed over Maus' head... The A-10's role has already been largely taken by heavy bombers and other aircraft with PGMs; and the fact is, if every last Warthog disappeared tomorrow, the USAF would still be able to support ground operations just fine.


The point is not lost on me: the USAF's latest attempt to divest itself of A-10s is rightly called into question by Congressional leadership and a fair number of independent analysts because of its past attempts to do the exact same thing. Add their escalating estimates of predicted "savings," and the specter of a threat to their precious F-35 program, the well informed are skeptical of the USAF's plan at face value. Then the USAF uses lame arguments like "the F-16 flew 80% of CAS sorties," but conveniently leaves out the A-10s carried half the ord used in these missions (figure it out: A-10 carried heavier payloads and had an increased loiter time, reducing the number of sorties required vs. F-16) doesn't instill confidence in decision makers. If the argument truly is about survivability - which it isn't, then the USMC should retire its fleet of AV-8Bs now, because they are dead meat if they try to fly its CAS doctrine. Yea, and while the USAF artificially tries to keep its A-10s high, the Navy F/A-18s do the gun runs.


Hmm maus, I wonder why the USMC is keen to be the first service that achieves IOC with the F35(B). Oh yeah, the USMC do have a plan to replace the AV8B :D.

News maus, USAF A10s, F16s and 15Es do gun runs too.....many a time in the sandbox. Not just Navy and (USMC) F/A 18s. These gun runs were done in relatively permissive environments. If the enemy had decent SHORADs, your F/A 18 (or insert favourite plane here) will think twice before doing the gun run. Another point, F16s, F15Es and F/A 18s can fly FAST and low if they need to.....more usefully they can fly fast and climb fast if they need to get out of dodge quick. The A10....not so much even if its pilot wanted to!
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