Air Force’s proposed $169 billion [FY2021] budget focuses on

Program progress, politics, orders, and speculation
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Corsair1963

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Unread post11 Feb 2020, 06:00

marsavian wrote:Corsair1963, I'm not sure anyone in Congress is willing to fight the President politically on these F-15EX, they didn't last time as I predicted and they are not coming in more expensive than the F-35 so they are not an obvious budgetary target. The best one can hope for is that they only replace the F-15C/D fleet and not the F-15E fleet too.



Trump doesn't even know what the F-15EX is.... :|

Point here is the budget is getting very very tight. So, some very hard choices are coming....


Expect the battle for the FY 2021 to be one hell of a ride. :crazypilot:
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marsavian

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Unread post11 Feb 2020, 06:05

I beg to differ, he knows what a Super Hornet is, he knows that the F-35 is 'invisible' but above all he sure knows who Boeing is ! ;)
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Corsair1963

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Unread post11 Feb 2020, 06:08

marsavian wrote:I beg to differ, he knows what a Super Hornet is, he knows that the F-35 is 'invisible' but above all he sure knows who Boeing is ! ;)



The USN just announced it was ending production of the Super Hornet. While, using the funding to buy additional F-35C's and to develop the NGAD. (formerly F/A-XX)
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usnvo

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Unread post11 Feb 2020, 06:10

I still think the whole F-15EX effort is a move to save the future PCA program, at least as currently envisioned.

If you start replacing F-15C/D with F-35A, a significant part of your future force that will be replaced by PCA goes away. That leaves you with just the F-22s, hardly enough to justify some new fighter. You have to push out the F-15 aircraft long enough to still maintain a significant force of dedicated Air-to-Air fighters. By buying more F-15s, you can replace the F-22s first and then the F-15s. Replacing brand new F-35As is probably a non-starter with Congress.

The Navy appears to be doing pretty much the same with the F-18E/F Block III. If you don't buy new F-18E/F Blk IIIs to replaced the Blk Is, and instead buy F-35Cs, eventually your justification for some fancy new fighter is destroyed.

In any case, if you push out the replacement too far by replacing F-15/F-18s with F-35s, you may not be able to justify a new manned fighter. So buying new old aircraft today, you keep the possibility of future super-whammodyne fighters alive.

But then that is probably just my cynical nature.

But there is another reason to not buy F-35s too fast and that is an orderly transition of aircraft. This is beneficial to the industrial base, future budgets, and the personnel transition. Buy a few hundred F-35s a year and you end up with block obsolescence again.
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spazsinbad

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Unread post11 Feb 2020, 07:41

Navy 2021 Budget Relatively Flat; Only 8 Ships Funded, Ship Retirements Accelerated
10 Feb 2020 Richard R. Burgess

"...The Navy plans to fund 121 aircraft with $17.2 billion in 2021, compared with $19.7 billion enacted in 2020. These include 24 F/A-18E/F Super Hornet strike fighters; 10 F-35B and 10 F-35C Lightning II strike fighters for the Marine Corps and 11 F-35Cs for the Navy; four E-2D Advanced Hawkeye early warning aircraft; six CMV-222B Osprey tiltrotor carrier onboard delivery aircraft; three MV-22B Osprey transports; five KC-130J Super Hercules tanker/transports; seven CH-53K King Stallion transport helicopters; 36 TH-73A training helicopters; and five VH-92A presidential transport helicopters."

Source: https://seapowermagazine.org/navy-2021- ... ps-funded/
A4G Skyhawk: www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ & www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/videos?view_as=subscriber
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sunstersun

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Unread post11 Feb 2020, 08:03

Should force the 60 F-35's on the airforce.

nvm wait congress did.
Last edited by sunstersun on 11 Feb 2020, 09:01, edited 1 time in total.
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quicksilver

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Unread post11 Feb 2020, 08:26

Corsair1963 wrote:
marsavian wrote:I beg to differ, he knows what a Super Hornet is, he knows that the F-35 is 'invisible' but above all he sure knows who Boeing is ! ;)



The USN just announced it was ending production of the Super Hornet. While, using the funding to buy additional F-35C's and to develop the NGAD. (formerly F/A-XX)


Good find Corsair. Here’s the link —

https://news.usni.org/2020/02/10/navy-c ... on-fighter

Kaboom.
Last edited by quicksilver on 11 Feb 2020, 08:53, edited 1 time in total.
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quicksilver

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Unread post11 Feb 2020, 08:30

usnvo wrote:I still think the whole F-15EX effort is a move to save the future PCA program, at least as currently envisioned.

If you start replacing F-15C/D with F-35A, a significant part of your future force that will be replaced by PCA goes away. That leaves you with just the F-22s, hardly enough to justify some new fighter. You have to push out the F-15 aircraft long enough to still maintain a significant force of dedicated Air-to-Air fighters. By buying more F-15s, you can replace the F-22s first and then the F-15s. Replacing brand new F-35As is probably a non-starter with Congress.

The Navy appears to be doing pretty much the same with the F-18E/F Block III. If you don't buy new F-18E/F Blk IIIs to replaced the Blk Is, and instead buy F-35Cs, eventually your justification for some fancy new fighter is destroyed.

In any case, if you push out the replacement too far by replacing F-15/F-18s with F-35s, you may not be able to justify a new manned fighter. So buying new old aircraft today, you keep the possibility of future super-whammodyne fighters alive.

But then that is probably just my cynical nature.

But there is another reason to not buy F-35s too fast and that is an orderly transition of aircraft. This is beneficial to the industrial base, future budgets, and the personnel transition. Buy a few hundred F-35s a year and you end up with block obsolescence again.


Actually, you’re quite lucid. It may not turn out exactly that way, but it’s a fair assessment imo. See the article above Re: truncation of the Blk III SH. Tighter budgets ahead and the Navy has been over-invested in TACAIR for years. It (...’the madness’) had to stop somewhere. Betcha there were some fun conversations in SecDef’s ‘night Court’ budget sessions. St Louis got ‘TX, EX and (maybe) NGAD and PCA pieces’, but not ‘SH, TX, EX and (maybe) NGAD and PCA pieces.’ Reinvigorates the outlooks in Lexington Park and Ridgecrest too.

I wonder what Dennis Muillenberg and Pat Shanahan are doing these days...
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Corsair1963

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Unread post11 Feb 2020, 10:05

quicksilver wrote:
Good find Corsair. Here’s the link —

https://news.usni.org/2020/02/10/navy-c ... on-fighter

Kaboom.


My guess is the US Navy will now increase orders for the F-35C to more like 25-30 per year. In addition to fully funding the NGAD. This will allow them to field two full F-35C Squadrons per year thru 2030 and beyond. (very likely) While, preparing for the future...

As for the F-15EX that will likely depend on a number of factors. From how well the economy is doing, to future defense budgets, to possible export orders, etc. Yet, it's long term survival is very questionable in my opinion....


Sad part is if they wanted to throw Boeing a "BONE". Far better to increase funding for the T-7A Advance Trainer and/or MQ-25A Naval Tanker. As a matter of fact they cut some of the funding for the former in the FY 2021 Budget! (crazy)
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Corsair1963

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Unread post11 Feb 2020, 10:32

usnvo wrote:I still think the whole F-15EX effort is a move to save the future PCA program, at least as currently envisioned.

If you start replacing F-15C/D with F-35A, a significant part of your future force that will be replaced by PCA goes away. That leaves you with just the F-22s, hardly enough to justify some new fighter. You have to push out the F-15 aircraft long enough to still maintain a significant force of dedicated Air-to-Air fighters. By buying more F-15s, you can replace the F-22s first and then the F-15s. Replacing brand new F-35As is probably a non-starter with Congress.

The Navy appears to be doing pretty much the same with the F-18E/F Block III. If you don't buy new F-18E/F Blk IIIs to replaced the Blk Is, and instead buy F-35Cs, eventually your justification for some fancy new fighter is destroyed.

In any case, if you push out the replacement too far by replacing F-15/F-18s with F-35s, you may not be able to justify a new manned fighter. So buying new old aircraft today, you keep the possibility of future super-whammodyne fighters alive.

But then that is probably just my cynical nature.

But there is another reason to not buy F-35s too fast and that is an orderly transition of aircraft. This is beneficial to the industrial base, future budgets, and the personnel transition. Buy a few hundred F-35s a year and you end up with block obsolescence again.


One of the craziest things I've read in a long time??? So, let's see the USAF should continue to buy 4th Generation Fighters. Which, are nearly obsolete today and will even cost more to own and operate long-term compared to additional F-35's! Nor, do I see on how buying the aforementioned would save the PCA??? As for one it doesn't need saving. As it won't "start" to come online for twenty years and slow at that. Which, would start by replacing the current fleet of ~ 186 F-22's in service today. When that is complete the New PCA would start to replace early production F-35's. That would be 25-30 years old by that time....Remember, like the F-35's today it will take decades to replace all of the previous generation types...

Actually, the Navy plan would be similar. By buying New F-35C's to replace Hornets and early Super Hornets today. Which, would be follow by more Super Hornets. Until the NGAD starts to come online. When that is complete they would start to replace early F-35C's.....In both cases just the natural progression. Which, would take a good twenty years plus to complete. With modest numbers ordered each year long term.

Honestly, this is nothing new at all. They have been following a similar progression for the last 70 years.... :wink:
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weasel1962

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Unread post11 Feb 2020, 11:30

usnvo wrote:If you start replacing F-15C/D with F-35A, a significant part of your future force that will be replaced by PCA goes away. That leaves you with just the F-22s, hardly enough to justify some new fighter.


Spot on. The current planned PCA program definition per CBO is 414 PCA at $300m each which is $124 billion including development costs. Anything less would be too high a development (and thus unit) cost.

The worst case scenario is elected jokers thinking the F-35 is a magic plane and the PCA is not required.
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Corsair1963

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Unread post11 Feb 2020, 11:35

The US has made it very clear it wants to maintain it's "Technological Edge". The PCA/NGAD aren't going anywhere.


That said, I do expect both programs to gain partners as time goes. With Japan being a perfect example.....
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Unread post11 Feb 2020, 11:39

Absolute rubbish. The PCA is going to be like the F-22. US only.

What the planners will want to avoid are a repeat of F-22 numbers.
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quicksilver

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Unread post11 Feb 2020, 13:47

“If you start replacing F-15C/D with F-35A, a significant part of your future force that will be replaced by PCA goes away. That leaves you with just the F-22s, hardly enough to justify some new fighter. You have to push out the F-15 aircraft long enough to still maintain a significant force of dedicated Air-to-Air fighters. By buying more F-15s, you can replace the F-22s first and then the F-15s. Replacing brand new F-35As is probably a non-starter with Congress.“ — usnvo

USAF not gonna get the EX numbers they want either as the sunrise of cost realism burns away all the marketing mist. It will be $100M+/jet if it’s a penny, and they’ll end up w/ fewer.
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steve2267

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Unread post11 Feb 2020, 15:25

quicksilver wrote:USAF not gonna get the EX numbers they want either as the sunrise of cost realism burns away all the marketing mist. It will be $100M+/jet if it’s a penny, and they’ll end up w/ fewer.


Some sources said the USAF never wanted the EX. If true, then the EX would seem to be a sacrificial lamb -- if the USAF doesn't get as many "as they want", c'est la vie, cut them "boo, hoo, how will we ever survive? sniffle sniffle"... just as long as PCA isn't touched.
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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