UK MOD in a muddle over F-35C

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lrrpf52

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Unread post07 Aug 2018, 17:50

steve2267 wrote:
marsavian wrote:Maybe the UK thinks it does not need it for now with maybe the Typhoon being more likely to be used in A2A close combat and/or CAS. It's not a big deal, the standard gunpod already works and is certified for their hardware and can be bought at any time. Guns are just a fallback option now in A2A when you are out of missiles and will probably be replaced by directed energy weapons in the future.


A quote by another member from an interview with an F-35 pilot suggested bouncing enema aircraft, sight unseen, with the gun, might be more than just a "fallback option." I seem to recall the pilot stated or acknowledged the answer either with a wink or a twinkle in his eye...

Think about approaching as a 2-ship or 4-ship with SA and energy advantage against a 2 ship or 4 ship of Flankers.

An unseen approach with coordinated gunnery would defeat any kind of DIRCM they have against IR missiles, and after the distributed strafes, you simply zoom away with energy advantage with the first run, followed by another attack from the other pair of wingmen if needed.

There isn't a lot they can do to defeat that kind of attack. Some of the TGT symbology I've noticed seems to show threat sensor envelope in an A2A context. By making an approach given all those ingredients and threat profiles in the mission data files, you get a very capable system even in the hands of a relatively-inexperienced pilot.

Listening to Nick Mongillo's experience as a nugget with his F/A-18C squadron opening night of Desert Storm, and the aftermath in the Hornet community, he said the newer guys with none of the habits from the A-7E ended up being much better with the capabilities of a true multi-role system that was conceptualized and delivered with the F/A-18, especially the C model. He was one of 2 F/A-18C pilots in Desert Storm to get kills on MiG-21s from frontal aspect in the initial merge, after getting the call-outs from E-2C. The more senior flight lead just watched 2 fireballs pass his 3-9 line.

Chip Berke said the worst time in his career as a fighter pilot was when he started flying the F-22A against new USAF F-22A pilots with less than 200hrs flight time, whereas he was a Top Gun instructor, 2000hrs in the Hornet, who knows how many hours in the Adversary F-16s, and F/A-18C combat experience enforcing the No-Fly Zones. He said he spent 6 months getting killed by the new kids, then having to de-brief day-after-day over that period and suffer in-detail all the mistakes he made, with specific feedback on his mistakes from these kids. He said he was trying to fly the F-22 with his "Hornet brain", whereas the F-22 brings capabilities with it that don't fall under the legacy 4th gen systems approach of sensor management and how to employ them. The new kids don't know any better, because all they've been exposed to is the highly-refined product that stands on the shoulders of giants.

The reports from Red Flag and some of the exercises the USMC has done indicated that the new pilots with no experience in 4th Gen jets are the ones getting the most kills. It sounded like propaganda at first, but in context, it all makes sense.

For the UK, they will be the first to enjoy the capability of the Meteor Long Range AAM in the F-35B, giving them a unique arrow in their quiver that the US does not currently have. I'm not sure how well the latest chapter in LRAAMs will work out, but it is a different missile with kinematic and seeker advantages over the AIM-120. The gun pod will just give them another tool in the systems for when the regional and projected contingencies call for use of the gun.
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spazsinbad

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Unread post13 Aug 2018, 22:40

HMS Queen Elizabeth to sail to the United States for F-35 trials
13 Aug 2018 By George Allison

"Aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth is expected to sail to the United States any day now for a series of trials with F-35 jets.The four-month WESTLANT 18 deployment will see the supercarrier sail to the eastern coast of the United States to begin trials that will pave the way for the UK to operationally deploy fighter jets at sea for the first time in years....

...BAE Systems test pilot Pete Wilson said: “This will not be a DT phase. Testing on the Queen Elizabeth will be like DTs 1, 2 and 3 combined. We don’t need to use fully instrumented aircraft; we already understand most of the loads on the aircraft systems, as we have tested that during earlier tests.”

The aircraft that will be landing on the supercarrier will belong to the Joint Operational Test team. The team’s mission is to build confidence in the aircraft towards helping clear the F-35 to make the legally mandated advance from Low Rate Initial Production to Full Rate Production. The RAF’s No 17 (Reserve) Test and Evaluation Squadron comprises ten percent of the test program in the JOTT we understand.

The reason that most if not all of the aircraft to touch down will be American isn’t some scandalous outrage (just watch how some papers report this, though) but rather most of the F-35Bs in Joint Operational Test team are American.

After speaking to one of the pilots in the test programme, we understand that the UK only has three (BK1, 2 & 4) test jets that are “orange wired” to take data for post-flight analysis, the rest being operational aircraft. Therefore, it is highly likely that the jets to go on HMS Queen Elizabeth later this year will be “mostly, if not entirely, American but flown by UK pilots”.

We were told by one of the UK pilots currently flying the jet that the reason for this is that the JOT team dictate the availability of test jets out of a pool. Our contact said: “It would be nothing more than symbolic to make UK jets available for the trials and that comes at a significant effort since all of them are based at Edwards AFB in California, not on the East Coast where the ship trial is due to take place.

Therefore, the most obvious and cheaper choice is to use the F-35B test jets based at Pax River, which are US ones. British test pilots like Andy Edgell, Nath Gray, will obviously fly them but there’ll be US pilots too because that’s how Joint Test works.”

HMS Queen Elizabeth is expected to sail any day this week."

Source: https://ukdefencejournal.org.uk/hms-que ... 35-trials/
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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steve2267

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Unread post13 Aug 2018, 22:59

If HMS Queen Elizabeth, at 65,000 tonnes and 982ft in length, is a supercarrier, does that make 'Murica's Nimitz and Ford classes, at 100,000+ tonnes and some 210 feet longer, superdupercarriers, 'cuz, you know... F/A-18E's and F's?

:drool:
Take an F-16, stir in A-7, add dollop of F-117 & gob of F-22, sprinkle with AV-8B, stir well, then bake. Whaddya get? An F-35.
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steve2267

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Unread post14 Aug 2018, 00:06

What is the RN plan for COD on HMS Queen Elizabeth and Prince of Wales? Just bring all the spares ahead of time?

Or since there will likely be cross-decking of Killer Bees with the USMC, is there the possibility that the USN might "donate" some CMV-22B's when US Bees are teaching the Brits the finer points of beer drinking?

Someone mentioned the Merlin is a fine helo... and that it is... but is it large enough to swallow an F-35B powerpack? Seems like it was a right tight fit with even the MV-22B, and I'm (kinda sorta) guessing the Merlin ain't as large as the MV-22B...

So how are the Brits going to get spare F135-PW-600 powerpacks out to the boat when they need some?
Last edited by steve2267 on 14 Aug 2018, 00:23, edited 1 time in total.
Take an F-16, stir in A-7, add dollop of F-117 & gob of F-22, sprinkle with AV-8B, stir well, then bake. Whaddya get? An F-35.
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Corsair1963

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Unread post14 Aug 2018, 00:10

Not to split hairs but I would classify the HMS Queen Elizabeth Class as "Large Aircraft Carriers" like the USS Midway Class. Unlike the Nimitz and Ford Classes of Super Carriers.
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Unread post14 Aug 2018, 00:19

steve2267 wrote:What is the RN plan for COD on HMS Queen Elizabeth and Prince of Wales? Just bring all the spares ahead of time?

Or since there will likely be cross-decking of Killer Bees with the USMC, is there the possibility that the USN might "donate" some CMV-22B's when US Bees are teaching the Brits the finer points of beer drinking?

Someone mentioned the Merlin is a fine helo... and that it is... but is it large enough to swallow an F-35B powerpack? Seems like it was a right tight fit with even the MV-22B, and I'm (kinda sorta) guessing the Merlin ain't as large as the MV-22B...

So how are the Brits going to get spare F-135-PW-600 powerpacks out to the boat when they need some?



They we either have to come via Helicopters or from USN Osprey's. (CMV-22B's)
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Unread post14 Aug 2018, 01:12

You have to remember the article is written by a Brit. It is likely the CAVERNOUS CVFs have plenty of storage room for aircraft bits & pieces. I have seen no mention of transporting F-135 engine bits hither & yon. There will be a small complement of aircraft initially +/- USMC. Perhaps later when more cash available then something may be on offer?

Soon the RN & RAN together will have two of the biggest ships ever in service for each therein - super or not. An example:

Last edited by spazsinbad on 14 Aug 2018, 01:37, edited 1 time in total.
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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popcorn

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Unread post14 Aug 2018, 01:24

'It's a bloody big ship"
https://youtu.be/AQ9H31z7OqM
"When a fifth-generation fighter meets a fourth-generation fighter—the [latter] dies,”
CSAF Gen. Mark Welsh
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blindpilot

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Unread post14 Aug 2018, 01:58

steve2267 wrote:What is the RN plan for COD on HMS Queen Elizabeth and Prince of Wales? Just bring all the spares ahead of time?
...
Someone mentioned the Merlin is a fine helo... and that it is... but is it large enough to swallow an F-35B powerpack? Seems like it was a right tight fit with even the MV-22B, and I'm (kinda sorta) guessing the Merlin ain't as large as the MV-22B...

So how are the Brits going to get spare F135-PW-600 powerpacks out to the boat when they need some?


The Merlin is "slightly" larger in internal cross section and only 3 feet shorter than the V-22 internal cabin. It can carry nearly 7,000 lbs internally weightwise. As to whether the F-135 packs can be loaded (load CG et al) not sure what that says ...

But the biggest difference between V-22 and AW-101 is speed and range (? AR? lilly pad hops from destroyer decks?) It's those advantages that differentiate, but the Merlin can be tasked ... certainly for once in a year emergency answers.

MHO

PS Note. After checking the F-135 power module weighs 9,350 pounds packed up. So they'd have to use external hook lift which probably would be limited to 50 miles range ... that's a lot of destroyer lilly pads to get to the South Atlantic, or a slow boat from Ascension to get the destroyer within 50 miles. But there are answers with the Merlin.

BP
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steve2267

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Unread post14 Aug 2018, 02:13

Well, if the Brits and Yanks are operating nearby or as part of the same flotilla... then me thinks the CMV-22B can fly any real important bits out from the beach if far away from land... and either drop them off on the Queen Lizzy, or the Brits can send a Merlin to collect said bits. I figgur the Brits will easily pay for said FedWrecks servies via barter with ale... Queen Lizzy must have copious quantities in cavernous interior...
Take an F-16, stir in A-7, add dollop of F-117 & gob of F-22, sprinkle with AV-8B, stir well, then bake. Whaddya get? An F-35.
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Unread post14 Aug 2018, 02:17

I'd just find space on that bloody big ship to store a few extra power modules above the recommended quantity.
"When a fifth-generation fighter meets a fourth-generation fighter—the [latter] dies,”
CSAF Gen. Mark Welsh
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Unread post14 Aug 2018, 03:13

popcorn wrote:I'd just find space on that bloody big ship to store a few extra power modules above the recommended quantity.

EXackerly. Theys got enuf space to construct their own FACO afloat - and call it a FLACCO. :devil:
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post14 Aug 2018, 03:24

They could... but all them extra power units will cut into their copious ale rations. Best to stock up on the ale, and then barter some piss to the US Navy when they need an extra enjun or two. The USN will be so dry, the RN will be able to get an entire motor for a pint, but being genruss lads, the RN might toss 'em a keg. Maybe a keg o'day for an Osprey o'day?
Take an F-16, stir in A-7, add dollop of F-117 & gob of F-22, sprinkle with AV-8B, stir well, then bake. Whaddya get? An F-35.
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popcorn

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Unread post14 Aug 2018, 06:38

AFAIK the Royal Navy shpis are "dry" having discontinued alcohol rations for several decades now. :devil:
"When a fifth-generation fighter meets a fourth-generation fighter—the [latter] dies,”
CSAF Gen. Mark Welsh
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Unread post14 Aug 2018, 10:06

popcorn wrote:AFAIK the Royal Navy shpis are "dry" having discontinued alcohol rations for several decades now. :devil:


Not so.
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