New & improved F-15s could be soon to USAF; no cost to F-35s

Discuss the F-35 Lightning II
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spazsinbad

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Unread post27 Jan 2019, 09:48

If the money is there, new and improved F-15s could be coming soon to the Air Force
26 Jan 2019 Jeff Martin

"IN THE AIR OVER KENTUCKY — The U.S. Air Force could buy a new version of the F-15, known as the F-15X, as long as there is enough money in future defense budgets, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein told Defense News Saturday.

And regardless of whether the service does buy the new jets this year, Goldfein said the new aircraft won’t be taking money from the Lockheed Martin F-35. “I’m not backing an inch off of the F-35” Goldfein said. “The F-35 buy that we’re on continues to remain on track. And I’m not interested in taking a nickel out of it when it comes to buying anything else in the fighter portfolio.”

...Goldfein said Saturday that the decision to possibly refresh the F-15 fleet comes down to the need for more fighters in service, regardless of generation. “They complement each other,” he said. “They each make each other better.” When asked if that meant compromising for quantity over quality, he said that would not be the case.

“We’ve got to refresh the F-15C fleet because I can’t afford to not have that capacity to do the job and the missions.” Goldfein explained. “That’s what this is all about. If we’re refreshing the F-15C fleet, as we’re building up the F-35 fleet, this is not about any kind of a trade.”

He added that Air Force needs to buy 72 fighters a year to get to the amount they need in the future — and to drive average aircraft age down from 28 years to 15 years. And while Goldfein might want all 72 to be fifth generation F-35s, budgetary concerns likely won’t let that happen. “If we had the money, those would be 72 F-35s. But we’ve gotta look at this from a cost/business case.” he explained. “An F-15 will never be an F-35. Never. But I need capacity.”

Source: https://www.defensenews.com/newsletters ... air-force/
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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mixelflick

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Unread post27 Jan 2019, 12:10

Maybe it's just me, but this seems.... exceedingly dumb.

We should have built more F-22's, but instead we are..... building an updated 1970's airframe, the F-15? And how is this not taking any $ away from F-35's? Is Boeing doing pro bono work for the USAF now? The F-35 will be cheaper, far more capable and can contribute much more to the force than any F-15 variant.

There's another thread about this in the Modern Combat AIrcraft section, so this is kind of duplicative. It's fun to think about uprated F-15X's, but it makes no sense for the USAF - when we could just be buying more F-35's. I love the old bird, but its best days are behind it. Air combat has fundamentally changed, and that needs to be reflected in the aircraft we're buying, flying and fighting in...
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Unread post27 Jan 2019, 16:38

Mixel, you're missing one point: the acting SecDef is a former Boeing exec, wink wink nudge nudge
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steve2267

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Unread post27 Jan 2019, 16:57

Hey Boing!

So fantastic of you to offer to build new F-15X's for the USAF for $60M each -- OR LESS!

Wink wink... nudge nudge

I get how the F-35 makes the F-15 mo betta... but I'm a little thin on how the Eagle makes the Lightning better. The only thing would be no additional stress / flying hours on F-35 airframes... but then it comes down to $$ / flight hour etc.

Various Air Force generals have stated it's about sustainment costs, including Goldfein when recently commenting about the T-X trainer. So... if it's not a jobs program, and it's not a performance issue... then I see it as either an industrial base issue, or a cost -- sustainment cost -- issue, if everyone is being honest. The Navy is continuing to buy Super Dupers, and Boing got the T-X contract... so I think one can rule out the industrial base issue -- Boing is going to survive.

So is the Air Force saying that F-35 sustainment costs will never be less than F-15 sustainment costs? I don't see Boing being able to build new F-15X's for less than F-35A's... Super Duper obfuscation games notwithstanding.
Take an F-16, stir in A-7, dollop of F-117, gob of F-22, dash of F/A-18, sprinkle with AV-8B, stir well + bake. Whaddya get? F-35.
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sferrin

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Unread post27 Jan 2019, 17:23

juretrn wrote:Mixel, you're missing one point: the acting SecDef is a former Boeing exec, wink wink nudge nudge


Maybe they could get him a cell next to Darleen Druyun. (Also F-22 production ended largely due to the whisperings of jilted former Lockheed exec. Gordon England.)
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steve2267

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Unread post27 Jan 2019, 17:32

sferrin wrote:(Also F-22 production ended largely due to the whisperings of jilted former Lockheed exec. Gordon England.)


I hadn't heard this before your post. Gotta link to a story or article?
Take an F-16, stir in A-7, dollop of F-117, gob of F-22, dash of F/A-18, sprinkle with AV-8B, stir well + bake. Whaddya get? F-35.
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sferrin

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Unread post27 Jan 2019, 18:05

steve2267 wrote:
sferrin wrote:(Also F-22 production ended largely due to the whisperings of jilted former Lockheed exec. Gordon England.)


I hadn't heard this before your post. Gotta link to a story or article?


Probably not going to find an article that lays it out for you. Lots of bits and pieces though back in the day.
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steve2267

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Unread post27 Jan 2019, 18:27

Copy, thx.

(SF, check msgs.)
Take an F-16, stir in A-7, dollop of F-117, gob of F-22, dash of F/A-18, sprinkle with AV-8B, stir well + bake. Whaddya get? F-35.
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zero-one

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Unread post27 Jan 2019, 18:57

mixelflick wrote:Maybe it's just me, but this seems.... exceedingly dumb.


I agree with your point but for a whole different reason.
I'm trying to make sense of why the USAF would be interested in the first place.

They say they want an aircraft for the ANG.
They say you don't need stealth for those missions.
So whats the CPFH of the brand new F-15SA/SG/QAs anyway? is it lower than the F-35's

Anyway from the criteria they pointed out, it looks like another plane fits the bill perfectly, the F-16V.
Cheap, non Stealth, ANG units already use em. It also has better Kinematics than the F-15 for most maneuvering metrics, thats a plus isn't it?

But I guess they really don't want Lockheed to have monopoly. I still say the T-50 was a better choice for the T-X program.
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vilters

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Unread post27 Jan 2019, 23:54

For such numbers? I would take a hard second look at the F-16XL

More lift, more fuel, single engine, huge low drag bomb load if required.

Either, there is something elementary wrong with the XL or they are not telling us the full story.

See what an XL with the stronger gear, modern avionix and newer engines would/could/should do.....

Reviving the F-16XL is the way to go to get to 5.000 airframes.

The only handbrake I see is that it "might" be better then the F-35 and that is a serious political and economical no-no- VETO / STOP / No------------------------------------ ! ! ! ! ! Not the F-16XL !!!!!
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steve2267

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Unread post28 Jan 2019, 01:14

vilters wrote:For such numbers? I would take a hard second look at the F-16XL

More lift, more fuel, single engine, huge low drag bomb load if required.

Either, there is something elementary wrong with the XL or they are not telling us the full story.

See what an XL with the stronger gear, modern avionix and newer engines would/could/should do.....

Reviving the F-16XL is the way to go to get to 5.000 airframes.

The only handbrake I see is that it "might" be better then the F-35 and that is a serious political and economical no-no- VETO / STOP / No------------------------------------ ! ! ! ! ! Not the F-16XL !!!!!


When I was in Air Force ROTC way back in the 1980s, the F-16XL had been recently flight tested, but did not amount to anything. My ROTC detachment commander, a former F-4 / F-111 WSO stated the XL was a non-starter. I think he said something about not enough thrust? Anyway... I think you need to look at F-16XL T/W ratio etc. Maybe a -229 or -232 blower would fix that issue? But the BIGGEST problem is that the F-15 is still in production, whereas the F-16XL never made it to production. I could see a serious argument for F-16V's instead of F-15X's... save money up front on purchase, and save money on sustainment / cost per flight hour. Since the F-35 makes everything mo betta... you could pair some F-35s (possibly... unless it totally screws up operations, which is a possibility) with F-16V's.
Take an F-16, stir in A-7, dollop of F-117, gob of F-22, dash of F/A-18, sprinkle with AV-8B, stir well + bake. Whaddya get? F-35.
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crosshairs

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Unread post28 Jan 2019, 02:09

vilters wrote:For such numbers? I would take a hard second look at the F-16XL

More lift, more fuel, single engine, huge low drag bomb load if required.

Either, there is something elementary wrong with the XL or they are not telling us the full story.

See what an XL with the stronger gear, modern avionix and newer engines would/could/should do.....

Reviving the F-16XL is the way to go to get to 5.000 airframes.

The only handbrake I see is that it "might" be better then the F-35 and that is a serious political and economical no-no- VETO / STOP / No------------------------------------ ! ! ! ! ! Not the F-16XL !!!!!


The XL was a science project!! In now way shape or form was it built off production tooling. It was all special means tooling and hand building.

The 15X is already being produced (essentially so). It would take 5 years and billions of dollars to engineer a production XL. For that time and money we could restart the 22 production line. But better yet, spend that money on 6th gen.

The only problem with the 15X is that the 35A can do air superiority better and for the same money.

Seems like the 15X is welfare for Boeing. It would have been a fine aircraft 17 years ago before 5th gen appeared.

Also the XL lost to the mud hen for all the right reasons.

Considering the 15 production line can only build more than a dozen aircraft a year, it ought to be a nonstarter to build hundreds of these things in any reasonable time.
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Unread post28 Jan 2019, 05:19

While we're discussing wishful thinking, let's revive the F-106 and give it a letter behind it's model somewhere in the range beyond V. F-106Ω should do. We will use the magic dust that Lockheed Martin would use to revisit F-16XL. Add in a pair of AIM -120D, a pair of AIM-9X, and GAU-22/A. APG-80. Link 16. IRST derivative of Sniper pod technology. No major changes, so it's going to have to stick with the J75. No FBW or any of that other unnecessary geewhiz crap like OBOGS or EODAS.
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vilters

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Unread post28 Jan 2019, 14:28

Quote :
The XL was a science project!! In now way shape or form was it built off production tooling. It was all special means tooling and hand building.
Unquote

You seem to forget that the F-16 itself started out as a unstable science project.

Only when they realized they had something good on their hands did the light fighter support group kick in to sell the thing in the first place.

And? ? ?
When you take a good deep look at the F-16 aft fuselage? ? ? That thing was meant to be a delta in the first place. :devil:

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