Marines F-35 reset

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weasel1962

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Unread post01 Nov 2019, 05:08

A former Marine captain-aviator (who happens to be a republican) extolling the virtues of a Marine LH.. *ahem* CVL. Once a marine, always a marine.
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spazsinbad

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Unread post06 Nov 2019, 19:33

Lightning Warning: U.S. Marine Corps F-35Bs and USS America shape the future of amphibious operations
25 Oct 2019 Sgt. Charles Plouffe| 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing

"USS AMERICA (LHA 6) -- When more than a dozen F-35B Lightning IIs thundered across the skies of the Eastern Pacific and touched down on the USS America on Oct. 8, 2019, it signaled the birth of the most lethal, aviation-capable amphibious assault ship to date. For the first time, Marines, sailors and airmen from across I Marine Expeditionary Force (MEF) embarked more than a dozen fully operational F-35B Lightning IIs aboard the amphibious assault ship USS America.

“We are a force of about 400 based on both ships and ashore - the command element, aviation combat element (ACE) and the ground combat element,” said Lt. Col. John D. Dirk, commanding officer of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 122, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing (MAW). “We augmented key enablers from I MEF to create a Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force (MAGTF).”

In his planning guidance, the 38th Commandant of the Marine Corps, General David H. Berger, highlighted the value of partnering Marine forces with surface combatants. Particular emphasis was placed on combining Landing Helicopter Assault and Dock (LHA/LHD) ships with superior aviation capabilities unique to the F-35B. “The ‘Lightning Carrier’ is an LHA/LHD with a jet-heavy ACE embarked,” said Dirk. “Which means the MAGTF aviation element has more of a strike mindset with 12 or more jets that give the fleet or MAGTF commander the ability to better influence the enemy at range. Tying the sensors and weapons of the F-35B together with those of the fleet is a lethal combination.”

Integrating 3rd MAW’s combat power and capabilities while conducting realistic training is essential to generate readiness and lethality in 3rd MAW units and for naval integration. “Our relationship with the Navy is important because if we go to war, we won’t be going as just a squadron. We will be going as a joint amphibious force” said Maj. Christopher Kelly, executive officer of VMFA-122. “Being able to deploy 12 or more F-35B’s on a naval vessel is realistic; it’s something that we can’t get every day at Marine Corps Air Stations Yuma, Camp Pendleton or Miramar.”

Training alongside each other enables the Navy and Marine Corps to improve tactical and technical procedures in terms of mutually supporting one another in the battlespace. Employing 12 or more F-35B’s aboard an LHA aligns with the Commandant’s Planning Guidance. Partnership with an LHA is the right and relevant warfighting capability for many of the challenges confronting the joint force and provides substantial joint operational flexibility, lethality and survivability.

“The ‘Lightning Carrier’ concept is what we are exercising during this at-sea training,” said Dirk. “I think we will continue to see the Marine Corps exercise these capabilities in the future.” 3rd MAW paved the way for the first F-35B squadron in 2012 and will stand up the first F-35C squadron specifically designed for traditional aircraft carriers in 2020."

Photo: "Generating Lethality: 13 F-35B, Two MV-22B aboard USS America U.S. Marine Corps Col. Benjamin Hutchins, commanding officer of Marine Aircraft Group (MAG) 13, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing (MAW), departs the amphibious assault ship USS America (LHA 6) in an F-35B Lightning II from Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 122, MAG-13, 3rd MAW, during routine training in the eastern Pacific, Oct. 7, 2019. The U.S. Navy and Marine Corps continue to combine efforts to refine and strengthen the fundamental amphibious capabilities and reinforce the Navy and Marine Corps team. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Juan Anaya) https://media.defense.gov/2019/Oct/25/2 ... 6-1014.JPG


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Unread post16 Dec 2019, 18:34

How will US Marines adjust for the future fight? | Reagan Defense Forum 2019 VIDEO 16 Dec 2019
"U.S. Marine Corps Commandant Gen. Robert Berger explains what he wants to cut from the service to make it leaner and more prepared for the next war." https://www.defensenews.com/newsletters ... ure-fight/
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Unread post16 Dec 2019, 23:18

Naval Integration Drive Shaping Acquisition of Marine Unmanned MUX Drone
16 Dec 2019 Megan Eckstein

"As the Navy and Marines continue to highlight close naval integration, the interconnectedness of the two services has moved beyond concepts and doctrine and is spilling into acquisition decisions being made, a top Marine Corps general told USNI News.

The Navy and Marine Corps both recognize that their futures are intertwined, with the Marine Corps expecting to use the sea as maneuver space and require greater intra-theater lift from the Navy. With adversaries growing more lethal, the Navy has recognized it will need the Marine Corps to help neutralize enemy radars and weapons ashore to give U.S. ships continued freedom of navigation.

Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. David Berger and Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Mike Gilday have made clear they’re in lockstep going forward, and their services’ Distributed Maritime Operations and Expeditionary Advance Base Operations concepts go hand-in-hand. Even the top requirements officers for both services, Vice Adm. Jim Kilby and Lt. Gen. Eric Smith, recently joked that they only speak at conferences as a pair and don’t go on lunch breaks without checking in with each other

Smith, the deputy commandant for combat development and integration, told USNI News that now tight naval integration is shaping how program managers conduct their business, too.

The Marines since 2016 have been working on a large Group 5 unmanned aerial system (UAS) called Marine Air-Ground Task Force (MAGTF) UAS Expeditionary, or MUX. The Marine Corps wanted this capability to help fill a specific gap in its sea-based aviation capability: it would have helicopters and tiltrotors for lift and would have the F-35B Joint Strike Fighter for strike and data collection, but it needed an advanced early warning and electronic warfare (EW) platform to round out a carrier air wing-like capability. Though the Navy didn’t have plans for a Group 5 UAS, the Marine Corps from the start ensured that future integration would be possible by requiring that MUX fit into the hangar on a destroyer.

Smith said the naval integration has gone much deeper recently, though, as the two services tighten their bonds...."

Source: https://news.usni.org/2019/12/16/naval- ... -mux-drone
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Unread post17 Dec 2019, 01:15

The Bell Aerospace V-247 appears tailor made for the MUX "program" or "requirements." The articles I have read about the V-247 left me wondering if the MUX requirements were written for the V-247, --OR-- if Bell is simply so in tune with their (potential) customer, that they tailored the V-247 around what the saw the Marines saying they needed / wanted.

The V-247 is touted as being able to fill in the ISR, E/W, and AEW roles, with anti-submarine and strike roles also being potentially met. While the V-247 has been discussed somewheres around here before, I didn't realize it was so large. The 247, leveraging off of Bell's investment in the V-280 which has been flying for over a year, reportedly will have an internal load capacity for ordnance / electronics etc of 2000lb, and an external sling load capacity of 9000lb. It is unclear to me if it can carry 2000lb internally AND still sling 9000lb. IF it can... it raises the possibility of also making it an airborne tanker, although I never saw that specifically called out. But it has to beg that question, it seems to me.

Multiple articles all reported the V-247 is sized to fit in a DDG's hangar, so they appear intent on being able to deploy this thing from destroyers in addition, possibly, to LPD's and LHD/LHA's.

If the V-247 *was* able to give around 10K of gas, that would really seem to change the calculus for deploying F-35's off of LHD's / LHA's. In addition, if you had picket DDG's several hundred NM away, equipped with gas-giving V-247s... that woudl also seem to potentially change the way F-35's could be employed.

The V-247 also seems to be a vehicle that would answer all the questions that British naval officer was raising that I "took exception" too. (Shame on me.)
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Unread post17 Dec 2019, 01:46

The remaining bit of the USNI article posted above has some crucial bits

Smith said the naval integration has gone much deeper recently, though, as the two services tighten their bonds.

“We have to do this together. … We’re talking about, while the Navy is working the Future Vertical Lift and that is kind of foremost in their priority group right now, is we start moving toward MUX – what it is, what it’s not, what it has to do – and mostly it’s [electronic warfare]. It’s not a cargo-hauler. One of the requirements is, it has to fit on a hangar on a destroyer, so before we make big decisions, we have to confer with the Navy to make sure we don’t go down a dead end where the Navy says, look, two years ago you took this right turn, I can’t go with you anymore, if only you had asked. So we’re asking on every decision that we’re making that’s a significant decision. Is this still working for you, even though you’re not ready to go yet?” Smith said, noting that he and Deputy Commandant for Aviation Lt. Gen. Stephen Rudder are in regular contact with Naval Air Systems Command as well as Kilby and his air warfare directorate (OPNAV N98).


The corp wants the UAV to fly off a destroyer. Can't see a group 5 UAV doing that without tiltrotors. The V-247 brochure states "Guided Missile Destroyer Shipboard Compatible". Agree V247 seems to fit the bill.

https://www.bellflight.com/products/bell-v-247

It won't be an airborne tanker though. Cargo-hauling is not priority number one. Looks like the corp would want to make V-22 tanking capability work first. Also the MUX is only planned to be operational in 2026. The main hurdle seems to be they need to convince the navy to accept it.
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Unread post17 Dec 2019, 01:59

What has happened to the USMC V-22 tanker? Most current models are getting 'streamlined' into about five distinct groups versus the myriad examples - difficult to maintain/support - now. USN just received their first example and they train on.
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Unread post17 Dec 2019, 02:39

weasel1962 wrote:It won't be an airborne tanker though. Cargo-hauling is not priority number one. Looks like the corp would want to make V-22 tanking capability work first. Also the MUX is only planned to be operational in 2026. The main hurdle seems to be they need to convince the navy to accept it.


I agree with you -- as stated.

However, thinking like a Bell businessman... [think think... think think...] "Who can I sell this to?" And I read that the Royal Navy is pining for a 3-in-1 outer mold line UAV that can
  • be airborne early warning
  • provide anti-sub help
  • provide tanking

And I've got this V-247 design which is fairly mature... and it's got a Rolls Royce (bonus to sell to the Brits!) turboshaft with enough power to lift 11,000lb of the deck... and I'm thinking... can I make this an aerial gas giver (even if no one is yet saying so?)

Bell is about to demo an unmanned capability for their V-280. I'm thinking a large part of their avionics work is already done in the V-280. H*ll, a large part of everything is already done in the V-280. The nasal radiators are getting excited for their nascent MQ-25 Stingray, so the seed for unmanned tanking has already germinated...

If memory serves, top speed was 350kts. Their talking a range of 450nm with gas to burn on station... V-247 seems tailor made, IMO, for delivering gas on demand to remote places. Another idea... the Marines have already run exercises where a CH-53K lands and creates a quick FOB for re-arming / re-fueling F-35's. Would it make sense to have V-247's (or a follow-on?) carry extra gas and maybe ordnance for the F-35's.

Perhaps the V-247 is too small for all ideas storming through me head, but that platform scaled up may be just the ticket, and Bell seems well on its way to perfecting that tiltrotor.

V-247 & V-280 bonus: won't melt the deck 'cuz the motors don't exhaust downwards when on the ground.
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Unread post17 Dec 2019, 04:06

Further consideration suggests an autonomous V-280 platform may make more sense as an IFR gas passer than the V-247. I was thinking that with only one motor, and possibly able to lift 10-11000 lb of gas, the V-247 could make an economical tanker. But it just may not be big enough. I suppose one could look into scaling the V-247... but it may be at the limit of single engine turboshaft power output... so if ya gotsta go to two blowers... why not an autonomous V-280? Bell is already exploring / flight demonstrating autonomous V-280 flight ops.... so they seem to be right there. Bell states the V-280 can haul 12000lb of cargo. If they make an autonomous version, perhaps that number could grow since all the human creature comforts could be removed? Dunno. Might fall into that "hey, just beef up the landing gear a bit, make the wing a bit bigger, and the stabs and fins too, add a tailhook, and Voila! naval tactical air from an Air Farce jalopy..." trap.
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Unread post17 Jan 2020, 10:12

General gives a great speech with discussion of "LIGHTNING CARRIERS" starting at minute 21 in the video below article.
‘Great Power Competition’ Drives Navy, Marines to Integrate Beyond Joint Operations, Berger Tells SNA
16 Jan 2020 John M. Doyle

"ARLINGTON, Va. — The strategy behind the integration of the Navy and Marine Corps is being driven by China’s emergence as a sea power, according to the commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps.

“The thing that has driven us to where we are right now is the paradigm shift by China moving to sea,” after years of building up its defensive forces and weaponry, Gen. David H. Berger said Jan. 15 at the Surface Navy Association’s annual symposium here.

“We can no longer afford for the Navy and Marine Corps not to be integrated,” he said, adding “It’s a must-do. Our naval force is unbalanced.”

In an era of global terrorism and asymmetric warfare, both services had different tasks to do that strayed from traditional fleet operations. However, for the next 20 to 40 years, with a rising China and a resurgent Russia creating a new ‘great power competition,’ the tasks and the challenges have changed.

A Sept. 6, 2019, memo signed by Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Michael Gilday and Berger stated the services will work on a “comprehensive naval force architecture” and an integrated force-structure assessment.

The Navy has largely been a big ship, standoff force with long-range precision weapons. The Marines have handled a number of tasks such as counter-insurgency, infantry patrolling and urban and mountain warfare in Iraq and Afghanistan. It’s been years since most Marines have logged sea duty aboard ship.

Berger said he and Gilday are developing a force structure that provides depth “all the way forward and all the way back.” A standoff force won’t provide the deterrence needed in the future, he maintained. “The farther you back away from China, they will move toward you,” Berger said, adding that any forward projecting force must be able to switch to offense if deterrence fails. “We will not be given the chance to swap out that [deterrent] force for another force. A great power competitor will not allow us to do that,” he noted.

Deterrence is the underpinning of the National Defense Strategy, Berger told Seapower when asked how units like the 700 Marines rotating through training tours in Norway since 2017 fit into the new strategy.

“The forces that we have in Europe, and specifically in Norway, are part of U.S. deterrence against Russia or anyone else doing bad behavior. If that doesn’t work out on some future date, the forces that are in Norway and Europe have to be ready to fight immediately. They have to have the equipment; they have to have the training. They have to be ready.”

Asked about the focus on China, Berger said, “I think the read of the National Defense Strategy is pretty straightforward. What the primary focus is, in the primary theater is not exclusive, of course, but it does prioritize. That’s where we take our lead from.”"

Source: https://seapowermagazine.org/great-powe ... rger-says/

SNA Syposium USMC Update https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fIyzZhQ8X9g [45 minutes]

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Unread post17 Jan 2020, 19:57

More on the Gen. Berger speech video above....
Marine Commandant: ‘The Farther You Back Away From China, They Will Move Toward You’
16 Jan 2020 Paul McLeary

"...In May, Raytheon was awarded $48 million to integrate the NSM into the Marine Corps’ force structure, following a year-long study the Corps conducted, where it also considered Lockheed Martin’s new Long-Range Anti-Ship Missile and Boeing’s Harpoon.

The plan, which was spelled out in Marine Commandant Gen. David Berger’s explosive guidance paper released in July, is to give Marines the ability to protect the fleet at sea from the ground. Berger wants his Marines to hold enemy ships at bay, buying American ships time and space to maneuver.

The Marines, the thinking goes, could deploy with these ship-killer missiles to small, austere bases for short periods of time to keep a potential foe off balance. Part of the plan would also put Marine-owned F-35Bs on widely dispersed and small ad hoc airfields, making US forces less predictable, and giving them more punch.

The Marines have been testing unmanned platforms to quickly refuel and rearm those forward-deployed F-35s
, as war planners recognize that large American bases in the Pacific like Guam and Okinawa are likely to take heavy losses in the first wave of any war in the Pacific against a Chinese foe armed with precise long- and medium-range missiles....

...Berger said he wants his Marines to be able to live and fight within Chinese missile ranges, and to do that, they need to be mobile and fast. Those forces have to be ready to go and not wait around for resupply or help. “We will not be given the chance to swap out that force for another force. A great power competitor will not allow us to do that,” he said.

Berger and Navy chief Adm. Mike Gilday are working on a new force structure plan to begin to provide that kind of depth “all the way forward and all the way back.” If American warships are unable to move across thousands of miles of Pacific waterway due to the Chinese threat, they won’t be able to fight, he said, and that space will immediately be ceded to Beijing. “The farther you back away from China, they will move toward you,” the commandant observed."

Source: https://breakingdefense.com/2020/01/mar ... oward-you/
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Unread post17 Jan 2020, 21:03

Sounds like a job for Bell's V-280.

Previously, the USMC had utilitized two Kaman K-MAX unmanned helos to fly cargo in Afghanistan, and those two K-MAX are (have been?) re-activated by the Corps for additional testing. K-MAX can sling 6000lb, whereas the V-280 should be able to sling 10,000lb. The V-280 reportedly will have the capability to be based on DDG's -- anywhere that can currently house a Seahawk. (I guess that would include Freedom & Independence LCS's too.)

https://www.flightglobal.com/helicopter ... 58.article
https://www.ainonline.com/aviation-news ... elicopters
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Unread post18 Jan 2020, 04:29

muh dogmas muh cows.
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Unread post22 Jan 2020, 15:40

End of the month.
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Unread post12 Feb 2020, 16:45

Massive Fleet Changes Loom As Navy Briefs SecDef Esper
11 Feb 2020 Paul McLeary

"...In addition to the Navy and Marine Corps shipbuilding plan, there’s an eagerly anticipated Marine force structure assessment underway which Berger has said will re-envision how the Marine Corps equips, deploys, and fights. He has said he wants smaller amphibious ships to move small groups of Marines around the Pacific, and is looking at ways to fly F-35Bs from ad hoc landing strips while equipping units with standoff precision weapons so they can protect the fleet from shore.

That plan should be released later this month, around the time he heads to Congress to sell an already unpopular budget — as well as his vision of the future — to Congress."

Source: https://breakingdefense.com/2020/02/mas ... def-esper/
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