JASDF may be in the market for more F-35s

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edpop

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Unread post24 Dec 2018, 04:12

Japan Looks to the Future
Japanese Government gives green light to recapitalisation of defence assets
Report by Jaryd Stock - December 19, 2018

Yesterday in Tokyo the Japanese Government gave the green light to a major shake-up within its defence forces. Most notably in the news coming from that press conference, and due to the current political climate and tensions within the Asia-Pacific region, is the plan to upgrade the aircraft-destroyer the Japanese Ship (JS) Izumo which with a full displacement comes to 27,000 tons. The noteworthy news about this is that the Japan Marine Self Defence Force (JMSDF) more to the point the Japanese Government plans to upgrade the Izumo to accommodate the Lockheed Martin F-35B Lightning, the Short Take-Off Vertical Landing variant of the F-35. The JS Izumo and her sister ship the JS Kaga are the largest combat surface ships to enter service with the JMSDF since World War Two, with both ships commissioned on the 25th of March 2015 and 22nd of March 2017 respectively.

The Helicopter Destroyer as it's officially labeled is, in essence, designed to project Japanese forces at quite a considerable distances away from mainland Japan with particular focus on landing ground forces via helicopter, or embark helicopters for humanitarian missions around the Pacific which actually did take place after the 2015 earthquake off the coast of Japan. But there has always been speculation within the Japanese media and for that matter surrounding countries that these ships were eventually going to carry the F-35B which the Japanese Government until now had never made a formal address whether they were indeed going to or not going to purchase the Bravo variant of the Lightning.
In the statement provided yesterday, the JASDF would acquire forty-two F-35B's which would see the aircraft also operate from the JS Izumo and will see the ship undergo a major refit upgrading the ship to accommodate the F-35B. Upgrades will include similar upgrades the United States Navy undertook to their own 40,000 ton Wasp Class Landing Helicopter Docks (LHD's) and 44,000 ton America Class LHD's.

Firstly the heat generated from the F-35B is quite intense on the non-skid deck the aircraft operate from, so a new heat resistant non-skid surfacing will be applied to the main deck with structural support added underneath landing spots to accommodate the aircraft especially with regards to the two to three vertical landing spots to the rear of the carrier. With no ski ramp at the fore of the ship the aircraft will conduct launch operations similar to that of USMC AV-8B Harrier's and F-35B Lightnings onboard the U.S. LHD's. The heat resistant deck will also allow operations of the MV-22B Osprey onboard the carriers.

[...]

Read more at http://aviationphotodigest.com/japan-lo ... he-future/
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weasel1962

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Unread post27 Dec 2018, 01:06

Converted Izumo carriers to not operate fighters in 'normal times': defense minister

https://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20 ... na/004000c

YOKOSUKA, Kanagawa -- The Maritime Self-Defense Force (MSDF)'s Izumo-class helicopter carriers will "not operate fighters during normal times," even after their effective conversion to aircraft carriers, Defense Minister Takeshi Iwaya stated here on Dec. 19.

Iwaya made the comment after touring the Izumo helicopter carrier at the MSDF's Yokosuka base in Kanagawa Prefecture, south of Tokyo. The visit came a day after the Cabinet approved new defense guidelines and the next five-year midterm defense buildup program, which included converting the Izumo-class vessels effectively into aircraft carriers. It also specified the acquisition of stealth F-35B short takeoff and vertical landing fighter planes, which can be operated from carriers.

The conversion plan has faced questions over whether the ships would constitute "attack carriers." Critics have pointed out that this would violate the Japanese Constitution's prohibition on maintaining any "war potential." However, the Izumo ships "will not operate fighters during normal times. They will not threaten other countries or cause uneasiness," Iwaya explained.

(Japanese original by Noriaki Kinoshita, Political News Department)


Weasel's note: Thought this may be a potential example of how F-35B & F-35B equipped LHDs could generally operate. Peacetime, Bs would operate from land bases.
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Unread post27 Dec 2018, 01:34

'weasel1962' said above: "Weasel's note: Thought this may be a potential example of how F-35B & F-35B equipped LHDs could generally operate. Peacetime, Bs would operate from land bases." That is how I see 'Oz F-35Bs on Oz LHDs' however the LHDs would need to be minimally modified to allow potential use of a minimal number of F-35Bs for Fleet Air Defence, nodes in the network, PLAN JERICHO and PLAN PELORUS and all that palaver, with sometime practice embarkation also.
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Unread post27 Dec 2018, 07:20

The Australian F-35B's would have to regularly train with the LHD's (Canberra Class) to say current.
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Unread post01 Jan 2019, 20:13

Japan wants to sell old F-15s to US to fund F-35 purchases
24 Dec 2018 GAKU SHIMADA & MASAYA KATO

"Washington considers reselling the used jets to Southeast Asian governments

TOKYO -- The Japanese government is considering selling some F-15 jets to the U.S. to raise funds for purchases of cutting-edge F-35 stealth fighters, Nikkei has learned, with Washington in turn weighing the sale of those outdated planes to Southeast Asian countries....

...Japan's roughly 200 F-15s form the core of the Air Self-Defense Force's air defense capabilities. About half the fleet has undergone modernizing overhauls, including updates to electronic equipment, but the 100 or so fighters being eyed for a sale are an older design that cannot receive the electronics upgrades. The government decided at a cabinet meeting last Tuesday to gradually swap these out for more capable F-35s....

...Japan's planned F-35 purchase was due in part to heavy pressure from U.S. President Donald Trump [?] to narrow the wide bilateral trade imbalance by buying more American defense hardware. Tokyo hopes to appease Trump while using the F-15 sale to lower costs...."

Source: https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics/Japan- ... -purchases
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ChippyHo

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Unread post01 Jan 2019, 22:14

Just a crazy notion - do the JASDF '15s have enough life left to be purchased and used as aggressor aircraft?
Or even crazier an idea - why not use them as Conus interceptor aircraft in the short term and retire some of the older and more worn out USAF Eagles...
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Unread post01 Jan 2019, 22:51

I don't think that there is anything that can be considered a CONUS only fighter anymore. IIRC all units, including Reserve and ANG rotate through overseas deployments.
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ChippyHo

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Unread post01 Jan 2019, 22:55

Well, I'd say the aggressor units (57FW) at Nellis are very task specific.
Besides i'd say that not all deployments require stealth gen 5 birds.
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Unread post01 Jan 2019, 23:08

Maybe Canaduh might be interested in some used twin engine fighters with a big radar at a terrific price?

Since Israel (re)names their US birds, Trudeau could even call it the F-15T Arrow...

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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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Unread post01 Jan 2019, 23:18

Steve
With all due respect - you're neither amusing or informative. You're prejudice is a little too obvious.
Go have one of those piss yellow beverages you guys call beer and lie down till you feel better.
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Unread post02 Jan 2019, 02:09

ChippyHo wrote:Just a crazy notion - do the JASDF '15s have enough life left to be purchased and used as aggressor aircraft?
Or even crazier an idea - why not use them as Conus interceptor aircraft in the short term and retire some of the older and more worn out USAF Eagles...


+1. I won't be surprised if the USAF takes a page from the USMC UK Harrier fleet buyout to keep the fleet flying.
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Unread post02 Jan 2019, 03:50

weasel1962 wrote:
+1. I won't be surprised if the USAF takes a page from the USMC UK Harrier fleet buyout to keep the fleet flying.



Doubtful as Davis-Monthan has ~ 166 F-15's currently in storage. Which, will be followed shortly by a similar number of F-15C's from both the USAF and ANG.

That said, maybe Israel would be interested until enough F-35A's come online. Yet, they likely would only want F-15D's. :wink:
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Unread post02 Jan 2019, 07:24

The 166 is broken down into 54 A, 6 B, 96 C, 9 D and 1 E. The C/D inventory based on the 2018 US almanac was 212 C and 23 D. The purpose of Amarc is to reclaim spare parts and the eventual disposal of spent airframes.

One only has to see how many of the AV-8 airframes out of the original 74 purchased are still in "current" status to know how many have been cannibalised in this short span of time to keep the current fleet flying.

If one believes that the F-15C is going to be retired tomorrow, no argument that even 1 airframe is not required.
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Unread post02 Jan 2019, 09:50

Corsair1963 wrote:That said, maybe Israel would be interested until enough F-35A's come online. Yet, they likely would only want F-15D's. :wink:


They have 14 now and another 8 by the end of 2019 (iirc). Seems enough for value-adding the current legacy force with their integration. Anything they obtained from Japan would require time to update and integrate systems.
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Unread post02 Jan 2019, 10:04

weasel1962 wrote:The 166 is broken down into 54 A, 6 B, 96 C, 9 D and 1 E. The C/D inventory based on the 2018 US almanac was 212 C and 23 D. The purpose of Amarc is to reclaim spare parts and the eventual disposal of spent airframes.

One only has to see how many of the AV-8 airframes out of the original 74 purchased are still in "current" status to know how many have been cannibalised in this short span of time to keep the current fleet flying.

If one believes that the F-15C is going to be retired tomorrow, no argument that even 1 airframe is not required.



Then it's settled as the USAF is going to retire the F-15C....


QUOTE:

October 9, 2018

Defense’s 30-Year Aircraft Plan Reveals New Details

Each year, the Department of Defense issues a 30-year aviation plan, intended to chart the direction of the aviation enterprise. This plan is typically relatively short on specifics, in part because 30 years is rather far to foresee in detail, particularly as that goes 25 years beyond official defense budget projections.

By contrast, the most recent 30-year aviation plan released in April 2018 is full of details on specific programs, including cancellations, life extensions, and new starts. Some are explicit; others, between the lines. Some of the highlights follow.

Air Force
The Air Force previously announced plans to retire the air-superiority F-15C Eagle. But this plan declares an intention to refresh and extends the life of the F-15E Strike Eagles, the attack variant.

The Air Force has also decided to extend the life of its F-16 Fighting Falcon fleet. What do the F-15E and the F-16 have in common? They are both slated to be replaced by the F-35 Lightning II. This new plan may show the Air Force hedging in case F-35s do not arrive as fast as hoped and thus has to extend existing airframes to fill the gap. The target quantity of F-35s has not changed; the Air Force still expects to buy 1,763. But in case they do not arrive as quickly as anticipated, the Air Force seeks to update its older aircraft.

https://fas.org/sgp/crs/weapons/IF10999.pdf
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