High cost of survival in an air war with China

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weasel1962

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Unread post10 Oct 2019, 02:04

Pre-positioning is of course preferred but C-17/C-130 packages are efficient. The short field landing/take off capabilities of both are optimized in this instance.

Some thoughts on PLA counter-strategies. I won't discount the possibility that the PLA would conduct a pre-emptive landing to take control of 1 or more islands. Stationing SAM or air assets would disrupt the LOC from Japan to Taiwan and deter the use of surrounding islands, similar to island hopping strategy used in ww2. This would delay US intervention as they have to take out the island first. China has already laid legal ground work in disputing Japan's claims to Okinawa.
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element1loop

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Unread post10 Oct 2019, 03:59

weasel1962 wrote:Pre-positioning is of course preferred but C-17/C-130 packages are efficient. The short field landing/take off capabilities of both are optimized in this instance.


I've developed that FARP operating concept a bit further and edited it accordingly, have a read what's there now:

viewtopic.php?p=428165#p428165

PLA's fastest way of denying FARP operating sites is paratroop drop with MANPAD support then back-up with a PLA air-delivered SAM system, once such islands are secured. Once they secure them they would attempt to deploy a long-range rocket artillery or GLCM to hit islands near it, to prevent FARPs in the area, plus recoverable tactical drones to recon nearby islands to target them.

F-35B CAP would need to prevent initial successful PLA paratroop deployment that way, and F-35A and F-35B to recon and strike to defang and prevent resupply to such islands taken and held by PLA, there's no specific tactical need to retake those islands, just need to take away their food, fuel and equipment, and keep them on ice - bypass them. The Chinese will attempt resupply by unmanned surface craft. Teen-fighters could quickly take the burden off F-35A/B and F-22A in this area.

Allied troops with runway repair kit, engineers, runway defense with a SAM, need to deploy early and hold preferred islands, so the FARP operations can begin from those bases. C-130J and C-27J move and provision the ground FARP supporting force. Re-supply could mostly be achieved via reuse-able GPS/INS guided parachute deliveries.
Accel + Alt + VLO + DAS + MDF + Radial Distance = LIFE . . . Always choose Stealth
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weasel1962

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Unread post10 Oct 2019, 06:51

Sounds like the making of a Tom Clancy/Larry Bond book there....

SEAD to take out the Patriots, ground based EW radars. Y-20/Y-9s then do paradrops so agreed!

The recent China military parade also showed off the ~700km ranged 2 seat SOF gyrocopters. The gyrocopters are themselves missile armed (hellfire equivalent), and can switch off their engines to glide in at low altitudes. Old Ming class subs can deliver SOFs as well that cause problems on the defended islands.

There's a lot of islands. It will really depend on the Japanese themselves to defend since US can't station troops on these except on Okinawa itself (and even then with a lot of brouhaha).

US Marines with ATACM armed himars guided by UAV spotting do have a quick reaction response.
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weasel1962

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Unread post10 Oct 2019, 07:47

Logistically, for B farp ops, each B sortie will require ~13000 lbs of fuel. A KC-130J can ground offload ~50000 lbs which would provide 4 Bs enough fuel for 1 sortie each. Offloading this at 4000lbs a min only requires less than 30 mins on the ground using hot fuel. So I'd pair 4 Bs for every herc. Each herc would carry 16 AAMs with maybe 32 SDBs which is another 14,000 lbs or other munition load. 6 would be between 4-8 so maybe FARP ops will likely Bs will be operated in groups of 4.

So all 4 Bs and herc lands at the same time, loads, takes off in opposing directions (B towards the enemy, herc for home base). Max time on ground = 30mins. Every other min, the runway is empty. Quick repair kits on the ground just to make sure 1km of runway is maintained.

53Ks can do fat cow ops as well but fuel loads appear to be more for helos.
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weasel1962

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Unread post10 Oct 2019, 08:05

F-35As or Cs can in theory do distributed ops but its less efficient. A & C fuel load is 18000 lbs & 19700 lbs respectively.

With the larger size, KC-46 or KC-135s will need longer runways to land/takeoff. With larger fuel load, there will be excess fuel which either means larger flight packages or excess fuel. Larger flight packages means more time to refuel on the ground. KC-130s will not match the A & C internal fuel loads so need more KC-130s.

Got to give USMC credit for their F-35Bs specs designed. Exactly tailored to meet ops requirements from day 1.
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element1loop

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Unread post10 Oct 2019, 08:24

weasel1962 wrote:F-35As or Cs can in theory do distributed ops but its less efficient. A & C fuel load is 18000 lbs & 19700 lbs respectively.

With the larger size, KC-46 or KC-135s will need longer runways to land/takeoff. With larger fuel load, there will be excess fuel which either means larger flight packages or excess fuel. Larger flight packages means more time to refuel on the ground. KC-130s will not match the A & C internal fuel loads so need more KC-130s.

Got to give USMC credit for their F-35Bs specs designed. Exactly tailored to meet ops requirements from day 1.


The tankers don't need to land. A KC-30A is after all an efficient long-haul airliner to begin with. The FARP concept described by Blain's linked document has F-22A being hot-fueled on the ground from the C-17A's fuel. The C-17A could AAR on the way back if it needs to.

https://www.airuniversity.af.edu/Portal ... -Davis.pdf

And if the F-35A/B refuel just before landing, and again off a fresh tanker when they launch from the FARP, do they even need more fuel on the ground - or just more weapons? If it's just more weapons you could preposition weapons (by parachute?) a week earlier, and not need a C-17 at all, just crew and equipment on the ground to load the weapons. Even less conspicuous, lower concentration of forces, less time on ground, lower-risk overall. All the enema sees is a single contact, the tanker, and they don't know what it is.

Fly the tanker below the radar horizon to PLA sensors and they don't see anything, VHF is likely on the blink, and OTHR hit.

The tanker can just move eastward for 45 to 60 mins then turn west or NW behind the fighters as they launch off the FARP, and cruise in to reach an orbit station for their return, and await with 2 x F-35A escorts, with a backup tanker halfway back to the base.
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weasel1962

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Unread post10 Oct 2019, 10:02

Air tankers are going to be target number one in any air war. Hercs are tactically trained for low level penetration flights at 300ft which minimizes sortie time. Noted C-17s have performed FARP ops but each C-17 carries 230k lb internal fuel. Add every C-17 being a precious asset and transport ops are going to be also a priority. Its not efficient to be used as ground tankers. Its going to take a lot of asset juggling for the 222 C-17s to satisfy both USAF ground fuel and transport needs. USMC has 79 KC-130Js supporting 353 B (Cs being CVN bound) which is a ratio of 4.5 to 1.

Most important is that whilst the C-17 has short field capability, USAF fighters generally do not*. Big base ops only for USAF fighters. Big bases tend to already have fuel farms. Distributed ops to only longer runways isn't really highly distributed. Unlike the USMC, imho the USAF still needs time to think this through and obtain the right asset mix if it intends to embark on distributed ops.

*I'm not talking about operating on minimums here.
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element1loop

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Unread post10 Oct 2019, 11:41

weasel1962 wrote:Most important is that whilst the C-17 has short field capability, USAF fighters generally do not*. Big base ops only for USAF fighters. Big bases tend to already have fuel farms. Distributed ops to only longer runways isn't really highly distributed. Unlike the USMC, imho the USAF still needs time to think this through and obtain the right asset mix if it intends to embark on distributed ops.


Yup, B on short fields, A from the longer fields.

Systematic investments can be made to encourage improving lengths of a number of currently marginal fields that are in advantageous locations.

C-17A is the better choice early when the threat is high, to get both in and out fast.

As threat level declines and confidence increases mix C-130 in as demands on C-17 require that.

If possible C-130 takes over most aspects of FARPs as CVN and LHDs come fully into play.

EDIT: Hot, wet and heavy is going to be routine so agree viable locations will be smaller.
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Unread post10 Oct 2019, 12:57

zero-one wrote:
vm wrote:Expensive? Chinese planes are cheap. End result no change.

Too bad aren't facing the Indians. Don't do anything, they crash on their own. Fight them, they shoot down their own.


vm wrote:Chinese products are cheap and of low quality.


I tried to do some research on this and it seems that PLAAF aircraft have very low crash rates. So far no J-11 has been reported to crash yet and only 1 J-10 has.

This is far lower than Russian, Indian and even American counterparts. I'm not saying China has better quality, What I'm saying is, we need to base our assessments on something.

Chinese hide their failed rocket crashes. Planes are very small in comparison.If their quality was so good, their iron friends wouldn't be buying Russian engines for the Jf17.
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Tiger05

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Unread post10 Oct 2019, 20:52

zero-one wrote:I tried to do some research on this and it seems that PLAAF aircraft have very low crash rates. So far no J-11 has been reported to crash yet and only 1 J-10 has.

This is far lower than Russian, Indian and even American counterparts. I'm not saying China has better quality, What I'm saying is, we need to base our assessments on something.


At least 10 J-10s have been lost in crashes since 2005:

https://aviation-safety.net/wikibase/type/J10

And i suspect that there were more crashes, just unreported. China isnt exactly renowned for its transparency after all, especially regarding its armed forces.
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weasel1962

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Unread post11 Oct 2019, 01:35

vm wrote:Guess your trolling here is your heritage from PDF. Some Indian has caused you a lot of grief.


You don't really post anything supported by facts. Many Indians are actually quite knowledgeable and I dont' have a problem with Indians. I have Indians on my staff. No idea what is PDF. I will admit to the odd bad taste jokes but I've done that to everyone.

My comment on this thread is supported by Indian sources. My opinions are facts based.

You on the other hand have come to this forum with several intent. To spread fake news and insult forumers. You assert I am a racist? lol. I've made over 1000 posts on CDF and over 1700 here only a proportion relate to India all of which can be viewed. If anyone else feel any of that is racist, do point out and I will gladly consider either deleting or amending.

However, your character and insults clearly show your true colors and real intent. You have come to this thread with the sole intention of character assassination, obviously with a long history of monitoring. Nothing new from your ilk. I've seen too many of your kind over the years.
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weasel1962

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Unread post11 Oct 2019, 01:48

vm wrote:Chinese hide their failed rocket crashes.


Source please.

vm wrote:Planes are very small in comparison.


After all the posts talking about how big planes like J-20, J-16, H-6, this is the end result?

vm wrote:If their quality was so good, their iron friends wouldn't be buying Russian engines for the Jf17.


That explains why all the pakistani J-7 engines are wopengs. Your prejudices are showing. You do realise that if we adopt your standard, what does that mean for the Tejas quality? Are you saying the Tejas is a bad plane because it uses a foreign engine?

You are clearly best at insulting people with your level of intelligence.
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Unread post11 Oct 2019, 07:06

The big issue with FARPing is that OTH radars readily detect aircraft landings; they are rather unmistakable events.

A kill chain that relies on an OTHR cue to gather satellite-based SAR imagery of a landing site needn't
be especially long latency; the SAR constellations DOD was looking at a decade ago had average response times
(depending on desired image quality and constellation size) that could be as low as five minutes.

With MRBM flight times in the 10 - 15 minute range and average FARP times in the 90 minute range,
there's a lot of slack for all of the other elements in the kill chain.

Ultimately, I don't really see how the Air Force can avoid embarking on a major hardened aircraft
shelter building program or at least structures can provide protection from the submunitions dispensed by MRBMs.
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element1loop

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Unread post11 Oct 2019, 07:35

marauder2048 wrote:The big issue with FARPing is that OTH radars readily detect aircraft landings; they are rather unmistakable events.


That was my first thought as well.

    OTHR is degraded by VLO aircraft with JASSM-XR.

    OTHR is degraded by GLCM (potentially from other threat axis).

    OTHR is degraded by ballistic weapons.

    OTHR is degraded by protected mobile strategic and tactical jamming aircraft.

For the initial FARP prep, 2 x C-17A land in advance, vehicles with everything needed drive off, time on ground 15 minutes. Such aircraft are not needed on the ground after this.

Palletized resupply by flyover and GPS/INS guided parachute drop from C-17A, C-130, C-27, etc.

People moved in and out fast with V-22 or C-27.

Tankers never land at FARPs.

VLO fighters are not refueled on the ground. (refueled before descent and again after FARP launch)

VLO fighter hot weapon replenish with immediate launch.

Such restrictions can all alter dynamically as the status of such active sensors and satellites change.

I think that'll work.
Accel + Alt + VLO + DAS + MDF + Radial Distance = LIFE . . . Always choose Stealth
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Unread post11 Oct 2019, 08:43

A recently published F-35A operational range analysis series highlights how important it is to forward-deploy to well defended foreign FOBs, in places like the northern Philippines for an 'A' force like RAAFs to contribute, sans a couple of dedicated F-35B RAN carriers plus some more KC-30A for hose refuel support.

Projecting power with the F-35 (part 1): How far can it go?
https://www.aspistrategist.org.au/proje ... can-it-go/

Projecting power with the F-35 (part 2): going further
https://www.aspistrategist.org.au/proje ... g-further/

Projecting power with the F-35 (part 3): operational implications
https://www.aspistrategist.org.au/proje ... lications/

That said;

Unrefueled F-35A strike range with JASSM-ER = 1,525 nm, 2,825 km.

2 refuel max strike range (1 out, 1 back) = 2,125 nm, 3,935km.

4 refuel max strike range (2 out, 2 back) = 2,725 nm, 5,047km.


2,725 nm strike range is the great circle distance from:

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