The US Army Wants the F-35 for Close Air Support

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spazsinbad

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Unread post25 Oct 2018, 19:48

The US Army Wants the F-35 for Close Air Support
23 Oct 2018 Warrior Maven (Kris Osborn)

"...“When you are in a firefight, the first thing infantry wants to do it get on that radio to adjust fire for mortars and locate targets with close air support with planes or helicopters. You want fires. The F-35 has increased survivability and it will play a decisive role in the support of ground combat,” Army Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Milley told reporters at the Association of the United States Army Annual Symposium.... The Army, Milley said, wants next-generation close-air-support for potential future warfare....

... as newer threats emerge and the high-tech F-35 matures into combat, many US military weapons developers and combatant commanders believe the JSF can bring an improved, new-generation of CAS support to ground troops. Thus - the ongoing Office of the Secretary of Defense comparison.

Accordingly, the Pentagon-led F-35/A-10 assessment is nearing its next phase of evaluation, following an initial “first wave” of tests in July of this year, Vice Adm. Mat Winter, Program Executive Officer, F-35 program, recently told a group of reporters. “Mission performance is under evaluation,” Winter said.

Pre- Initial Operational Test & Evaluation test phases, are currently underway at Edwards AFB and Naval Air Station China Lake, officials said. “Mission performance is being evaluated in the presence of a robust set of ground threats and, to ensure a fair and comparable evaluation of each system’s performance, both aircraft are allowed to configure their best weapons loadouts and employ their best tactics for the mission scenario” a statement from the Director, Operational Test & Evaluation said....

...When it comes to the Army and the F-35, one can clearly envision warfare scenarios wherein Army soldiers could be supported by the Marine Corps F-35B, Navy F-35C or Air Force F-35A. “We don’t fight as an Army - we fight as a joint force. What makes us different is the synergistic effect we get from combining various forces in time and space,” Milley said."

Source: https://defensemaven.io/warriormaven/ai ... QtsL2lrLA/
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 post26 Oct 2018, 00:01

But...but...but...BRRRRTTT....
"When a fifth-generation fighter meets a fourth-generation fighter—the [latter] dies,”
CSAF Gen. Mark Welsh
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sferrin

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Unread post26 Oct 2018, 00:21

popcorn wrote:But...but...but...BRRRRTTT....


BRRRRRTTTTT this:



"There I was. . ."
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hythelday

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Unread post26 Oct 2018, 01:32

Remember when A-10As were completely unaffected by Iraqi AAA during Gulf War? Me neither.

By the way: Su-25, which the Russians obviously claim to be superior to A-10 in every possible way has a remarkable achievemnt - it is an aircraft that has been shot down in every conflict where ground troops had a slightest chance to shoot back. Soviets lost Frogfoots in Afghanistan, Iraqis against Iran, Russians in both Chechnian Wars and as recently as last year in Syria (to ground fire, not accident mind you), Azerbaijan durind Karabakh conflict, both sides during 2008 Russo-Georgian War and Ukranians lost several during the short period they flew against "separatist" air defences. Ivory Coast inventory is no more, but that incident is quite uniqe. Internet tells me that Chad and Macedonia also used Su-25s in combat, but those must have been some one-way fights if they haven't lost any.

Low and slow is just not worth it.
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Unread post26 Oct 2018, 03:48

With SAR/EOTS pinpoint accuracy, DAS 360 degree awareness, AESA radar/jammer to jam any fire control radar that locks on it close and heavy 25mm cannon and potential supersonic entry/exit, it's not going to be bad at the CAS deal this F-35 thingy ;).
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kimjongnumbaun

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Unread post26 Oct 2018, 07:10

The US Army is making a large push towards fires as being their main support for future combat operations. The general belief in all my field grade courses is now pushing this and working under the assumption that we can no longer count of air dominance within a quick time frame. In part it's due to emerging aerial threats, but also because IADS have become so lethal.

Having the ability of an F-35 to be able to triangulate enemy fires for counter battery would be a massive game changer. Our recon strikers can already have rounds on target within 30 seconds of them getting a GPS coordinate, assuming all deconfliction is already done. War is quickly moving towards network vs network. The side who has more information and has it faster will kill the side without.
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Unread post26 Oct 2018, 15:11

kimjongnumbaun wrote:War is quickly moving towards network vs network. The side who has more information and has it faster will kill the side without.


I agree, but I fear that it will also come down to red-tape vs red-tape.
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Unread post06 Apr 2019, 02:07

"The US Army Wants the F-35 for Close Air Support"
They sure do, which is why, "A-10 Warthog Squadron Receives Rare Award for Extraordinary Heroism in Syria"...
https://www.military.com/daily-news/201 ... o.facebook
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Unread post06 Apr 2019, 07:57

Triangulating for fire is not close air support. If that was, then Joint Stars is an A10...

A better comparison would be the F35 triangulating mission to that of the OV-10.

There will always will be 3 methods of acquisition of a target, the three merged being the best assurance of accuracy and verification: visual, electronic, indirect/deadReckon inertial.

The F35cannot replace the A10for direct fire with , what, 100 rounds of ammo?

While waiting for a platform that can truly do all three, combined arms tactics using both the F35 and A10 together will remain du jour, and it would behove generals to not rewrite battle taskforce strategies to fit the marketing pretenses of Lockheed and DOD bean counters.

It would be more productive if people proposed to replace the A10 with a A-UAV alternative directed by a F-35 or ground forces, for instance.
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Unread post06 Apr 2019, 09:24

cola wrote:"The US Army Wants the F-35 for Close Air Support"
They sure do, which is why, "A-10 Warthog Squadron Receives Rare Award for Extraordinary Heroism in Syria"...
https://www.military.com/daily-news/201 ... o.facebook


It's a good tagline but I would not be comfortable sending an A-10 into an IADS with a reasonable chance it would be shot down. If I have to write the letter to their family that the pilot died because I was willing to risk their life when we had better options, that's going to be a hard no from me unless this was an extremely critical mission where we couldn't source other assets. While some parts of Syria are permissive, in a full blown war the A-10 isn't survivable. I don't think human life is cheap. As a war planner, I take that into account when I evaluate the risk of the mission and what platform I want to send into the jaws of the enemy.
Last edited by kimjongnumbaun on 06 Apr 2019, 09:40, edited 1 time in total.
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Unread post06 Apr 2019, 09:30

boilermaker wrote:Triangulating for fire is not close air support. If that was, then Joint Stars is an A10...

A better comparison would be the F35 triangulating mission to that of the OV-10.

There will always will be 3 methods of acquisition of a target, the three merged being the best assurance of accuracy and verification: visual, electronic, indirect/deadReckon inertial.

The F35cannot replace the A10for direct fire with , what, 100 rounds of ammo?

While waiting for a platform that can truly do all three, combined arms tactics using both the F35 and A10 together will remain du jour, and it would behove generals to not rewrite battle taskforce strategies to fit the marketing pretenses of Lockheed and DOD bean counters.

It would be more productive if people proposed to replace the A10 with a A-UAV alternative directed by a F-35 or ground forces, for instance.


We don't need to triangulate for fire. We have ESM. That is enough information to send a drone to geolocate a target. Either the drone finds the target and doesn't get shot down because the RCS is so small it never gets detected, or it gets shot down and we lost a drone. But in shooting down the drone, the enemy reveals the location of that SAM asset and then we get to pummel that grid square with an MLRS assuming nothing else is there. EOTS/Big Eye/JSTARS triangulates the launch point and we can use a GMLRS to ruin their day.

There is little reason for us to need a "direct fire" system like the A-10. The A-10 has a large beaten zone and I would prefer SDBs for more concentrated firepower in a smaller CEP and less collateral damage since our enemies don't care about civilian casualties. I care about collateral damage because I'm not eager to go to jail for war crimes. If I can put a SDB/GBU-12 into the radar dish of a SAM vs hoping that a 30mm strafing run does enough damage to the same target, I'm going for the guaranteed kill.
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Unread post06 Apr 2019, 12:30

Back before we had better options, the A-10 was IT. It was designed for NATO for use in the Fulda Gap, and no doubt would have taken losses there. I don't think anyone was under the illusion about this - and heavy losses at that.

Today things are a lot different. We have Strike Eagles, B-1B's, B-52's etc that can deliver way bigger loads than the A-10. Is the gun effective? Sure is, but at what cost? These new SAM systems are far more capable than the ZSU-23 or like systems, and put low and slow fliers like the A-10 and AH-64 at extreme risk. The S-300/400 put everyone at high risk, so why risk it?

Let the F-35 sanitize the battlefield, and then once that's done you can deploy the A-10 if you really "have" to have it. Or the AH-64. The Chinese won't be fighting an urban warfare/Fulda Gap type war. De facto, we shouldn't be banking on an aircraft best suited to that scenario...
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Unread post06 Apr 2019, 14:47

boilermaker wrote:Triangulating for fire is not close air support. If that was, then Joint Stars is an A10...

A better comparison would be the F35 triangulating mission to that of the OV-10.

There will always will be 3 methods of acquisition of a target, the three merged being the best assurance of accuracy and verification: visual, electronic, indirect/deadReckon inertial.


Well, the best thing about the F-35 is that its systems/sensors and sensor fusion can triangulate and shoot at targets at almost the same time.
Or using your analogy, the F-35 does combine the JSTARS and A-10 capabilities in a single airframe (and does way more than that).

Something like this:




boilermaker wrote:
The F35cannot replace the A10for direct fire with , what, 100 rounds of ammo?


As other have said, other weapons such as the SDB can provide much better Close Air Support than a gun.
And for those increasingly rarer situation where a gun would be preferred then a 25mm gun with 180 rounds (or 220 for the podded gun) will be more enough for the job.


boilermaker wrote:
While waiting for a platform that can truly do all three, combined arms tactics using both the F35 and A10 together will remain du jour, and it would behove generals to not rewrite battle taskforce strategies to fit the marketing pretenses of Lockheed and DOD bean counters.


Everything that I read and watched about the F-35 (including the video above) makes me to conclude that the F-35 "can truly do all three".


boilermaker wrote:
It would be more productive if people proposed to replace the A10 with a A-UAV alternative directed by a F-35 or ground forces, for instance.


While I agree with you above, I can stop to think that you're somehow contradicting yourself here. Let's see:
- First, you mention that the F-35 cannot replace the A-10 because it doesn't carry enough gun ammo.
- Then, you agree that a UAV (or UCAV) could replace the A-10 (which again, I agree) while the F-35 wouldn't. But are you aware that a UAV/UCAV wouldn't carry any gun at all?
A 4th/4.5th gen fighter aircraft stands about as much chance against a F-35 as a guns-only Sabre has against a Viper.
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Unread post06 Apr 2019, 17:48

kimjongnumbaun wrote:
cola wrote:"The US Army Wants the F-35 for Close Air Support"
They sure do, which is why, "A-10 Warthog Squadron Receives Rare Award for Extraordinary Heroism in Syria"...
https://www.military.com/daily-news/201 ... o.facebook


It's a good tagline but I would not be comfortable sending an A-10 into an IADS with a reasonable chance it would be shot down. If I have to write the letter to their family that the pilot died because I was willing to risk their life when we had better options, that's going to be a hard no from me unless this was an extremely critical mission where we couldn't source other assets. While some parts of Syria are permissive, in a full blown war the A-10 isn't survivable. I don't think human life is cheap. As a war planner, I take that into account when I evaluate the risk of the mission and what platform I want to send into the jaws of the enemy.


Especially when one takes a look at what's actually in the article...

But during this six-month operation, the pilots tried to strike snipers in "this dense, urban city" sometimes without eyes directly on the hidden fighters, said Lt. Col. Craig Morash, 74th EFS commander. That included fighters weaving through buildings and narrow roadways.


On his third combat run over enemy territory, Capt. Matthew Underwood, an A-10 pilot and team lead, said he and his wingman "ended up shooting a maverick [missile] into a building to get the sniper team that was firing" on the Syrian Democratic Forces below, allowing the pilots to witness just what the A-10 can do, even against larger structures. Taking out ISIS fighters' hiding spots became a way to protect friendly forces.


There's absolutely no hint in the article about the touted unique virtues of the A-10 (armor, low speed maneuvrability and BRRRRRTTTT) being used. Rather, it suggests using sensors and long(ish) range weapons to stay outside the threat bubble, and relying on the JTAC's requests rather than the pilot's eyes.

Also surprisingly, in the OP, Milley isn't pushing for OVERMATCH. :twisted:
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Unread post06 Apr 2019, 18:36

kimjongnumbaun wrote:The US Army is making a large push towards fires as being their main support for future combat operations. The general belief in all my field grade courses is now pushing this and working under the assumption that we can no longer count of air dominance within a quick time frame. In part it's due to emerging aerial threats, but also because IADS have become so lethal.

Having the ability of an F-35 to be able to triangulate enemy fires for counter battery would be a massive game changer. Our recon strikers can already have rounds on target within 30 seconds of them getting a GPS coordinate, assuming all deconfliction is already done. War is quickly moving towards network vs network. The side who has more information and has it faster will kill the side without.



Yep. Same on, Marine side of the house. the HIMARS bubbas and F-35 are going to be joined at the hip. The Gun Bunnies had a huge symposium. and the stuff theyre going over and planning for sounds similiar.


cola wrote:"The US Army Wants the F-35 for Close Air Support"
They sure do, which is why, "A-10 Warthog Squadron Receives Rare Award for Extraordinary Heroism in Syria"...
https://www.military.com/daily-news/201 ... o.facebook


Imagine bumping this thread after 6 months because you were so clueless you thought this had any relevance at all.

The mere fact that you don't understand the air force giving itself a unit award to a unit, which is composed of individuals and not to the actual A-10 itself just goes to show how little you know. Not only did you take an air force unit citation and try to "shift" that as some kind of "proof" but there zero connection between an award given by the USAF and a statement made by the US Army. Even more so as the Army and Marines start shifting tactics. Unit cititations awards and medals and promotions follow deployments, and its hardly "proof" when the Air force pats its own back to mean the army's own statements and plan going forward is now contradicted.

As has been demonstrated before, You have absolutely no clue about the subject you're talking about, and its far from the first time you've made yourself look foolish, and not just in one area but in many. here you demonstrate a lack of knowledge of the services and their relationships, The USAF Award system, the ability to read the army's original and official statement, CAS, the A-10, and the Future of 21st century battlefield tactics coming into vogue. Youre "argument" is "but look shiny medals!! that means the army loves it!" If the army fell over itself everytime the USAF gave itself medals, no one would be able to walk from their car to the chowhall.

So no, the example your using is a complete and total failure to prove your point. Whether this was done intentionally or out of your own ignorance I have no idea, And I'll leave it up to the folks here to decide which is worse.

I can't even explain or articulate, how bad you struck out here.

Image

I have no idea on what planet, the Army straight out saying the F-35 is the future, and the air force giving a unit an award to an air force squadron suddenly means the army is contradicting its own statement.

This will be one of the stupidest things I will read this month and its only the 6th
Last edited by XanderCrews on 06 Apr 2019, 22:35, edited 1 time in total.
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