F/A-XX / F-35 relationship: Complementary or a hedge?

Military aircraft - Post cold war aircraft, including for example B-2, Gripen, F-18E/F Super Hornet, Rafale, and Typhoon.
  • Author
  • Message
Offline

maus92

Elite 1K

Elite 1K

  • Posts: 1655
  • Joined: 21 May 2010, 17:50
  • Location: Annapolis, MD

Unread post19 Apr 2012, 13:05

Navy Looks for New Jet, on Top of Its Trillion-Dollar Model

"The stealthy F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) is supposed to one day make up 90 percent or more of America’s combat aviation power. But the program has been hit with all kinds of expensive technical glitches and delays. So the Navy has long hedged against the giant JSF bet by buying more of its beloved F/A-18 Super Hornet; that way, the Navy can keep flying modern fighters, even if the JSFs slip. With this “market survey,” the Navy appears to be making a second hedge: a Son of the Super Hornet — one that would come online after the F/A-18s are retired in the 2030s — just in case the JSF flames out entirely."

Full article: http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2012/04 ... er+Room%29
Offline

wrightwing

Elite 2K

Elite 2K

  • Posts: 2110
  • Joined: 23 Oct 2008, 15:22

Unread post19 Apr 2012, 14:32

maus92 wrote:"The stealthy F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) is supposed to one day make up 90 percent or more of America’s combat aviation power. But the program has been hit with all kinds of expensive technical glitches and delays. So the Navy has long hedged against the giant JSF bet by buying more of its beloved F/A-18 Super Hornet; that way, the Navy can keep flying modern fighters, even if the JSFs slip. With this “market survey,” the Navy appears to be making a second hedge: a Son of the Super Hornet — one that would come online after the F/A-18s are retired in the 2030s — just in case the JSF flames out entirely."



The F/A-XX is the Super Hornet's replacement.
Offline
User avatar

spazsinbad

Elite 3K

Elite 3K

  • Posts: 11150
  • Joined: 05 May 2009, 21:31
  • Location: ɐıןɐɹʇsn∀
  • Warnings: -2

Unread post19 Apr 2012, 14:34

Interesting perhaps that the very next sentence in the very next paragraph states:

"“That’s absolutely not the right interpretation,” says Capt. Frank Morley, the Navy’s program manager for the Super Hornet and its cousin, the EA-18 jamming Growler....

...But the Son of the Super Hornet, the Navy’s survey swears, isn’t supposed to be a backup in case the JSF fails. Instead, it will be a “complementary … asset to the F-35C and an unmanned persistent intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) vehicle with precision strike capability.” In other words, it’ll fly in a carrier air wing alongside the JSF and the Navy’s future carrier-based drone, currently known as the X-47B.

...Morley strongly denies that the Son of the Super Hornet poses a threat to the JSF or will replicate its missions. “We are an all-F-18 fleet today,” Morley tells Danger Room. “In that 2020-2030 time frame, those decades, we intend to be a Super Hornet-JSF fleet. And then those Super Hornets are going to be aging out, those earlier ones, and we need to be a JSF-and-something-else fleet.”..."

HMMM! Why all this B/S about other aircraft other than the F-35?

And why is this statement in the first quoted paragraph by 'maus92' true? "...The stealthy F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) is supposed to one day make up 90 percent or more of America’s combat aviation power..." How can this be true if the USN makes clear that the Super Hornet and replacement will operate with the F-35s? What a load of reporter tripe roundly bolloxed by the USN. Waste of space.
RAN FAA A4G: http://tinyurl.com/ctfwb3t http://tinyurl.com/ccmlenr http://www.youtube.com/user/bengello/videos
Offline
User avatar

spazsinbad

Elite 3K

Elite 3K

  • Posts: 11150
  • Joined: 05 May 2009, 21:31
  • Location: ɐıןɐɹʇsn∀
  • Warnings: -2

Unread post19 Apr 2012, 14:56

No Hedge Here - Nothing up my sleeve...

Navy document plans future of carrier air wings By D. Majumdar Jan 18, 2012

http://www.navytimes.com/news/2012/01/d ... gs-011812/

“The Navy’s carrier air wings of tomorrow will look very different from to-day’s, according to a new document produced by the sea services. By 2032, the Navy’s fleet of F/A-18E/F Super Hornets fighters and new EA-18G Growler electronic attack jets will have begun to be replaced by new types, a new document called Naval Aviation Vision 2012 reads.

The Navy will consider manned, unmanned & optionally manned aircraft to replace the long serving Rhino, as the F/A-18E/F is known to carrier deck crews. The Super Hornet will begin to reach the end of its service life around 2025 & must be replaced. The document says a competitive fly-off will be held at some point in the future. The Super Hornet-derived EA-18G will also start being replaced by a new aircraft, but the document offers no further details.

Additionally, a new Unmanned Carrier Launched Surveillance & Strike (UCLASS) is to be integrated onto the carrier deck around 2018 — possibly with four to six planes embarked. The aircraft could make use of technolog-ies developed by the X-47B program. The Navy document calls for “balanced survivability” so that the unmanned strike plane will be effective in “specified tactical situations.”

The F-35C will serve alongside these prospective aircraft....”

Graphic from: http://www.public.navy.mil/airfor/nae/V ... Vision.pdf
Attachments
NavAvVisionJan2012.jpg
RAN FAA A4G: http://tinyurl.com/ctfwb3t http://tinyurl.com/ccmlenr http://www.youtube.com/user/bengello/videos
Online

popcorn

Elite 3K

Elite 3K

  • Posts: 3377
  • Joined: 24 Sep 2008, 08:55

Unread post19 Apr 2012, 16:40

Obviously meant more as a personal commentary to create an emotional reaction than something to be taken seriously. A quick review of the author's previous works shows a tendency for sensationalism that would be right at home in tabloids.
“What can be asserted without proof can be dismissed without proof.”
- Christopher Hitchens
Offline

1st503rdsgt

Banned

  • Posts: 1547
  • Joined: 23 Jan 2011, 01:23

Unread post19 Apr 2012, 16:55

popcorn wrote:Obviously meant more as a personal commentary to create an emotional reaction than something to be taken seriously. A quick review of the author's previous works shows a tendency for sensationalism that would be right at home in tabloids.


Been reading Spence for a long time. He generally dismisses anything that isn't an RC toy as cold-war junk.
The sky is blue because God loves the Infantry.
Offline
User avatar

spazsinbad

Elite 3K

Elite 3K

  • Posts: 11150
  • Joined: 05 May 2009, 21:31
  • Location: ɐıןɐɹʇsn∀
  • Warnings: -2

Unread post19 Apr 2012, 17:01

To go with the graphic above...

NAVAL AVIATION VISION JANUARY 2012

http://www.public.navy.mil/airfor/nae/V ... Vision.pdf (9.7Mb)

"FUTURE CARRIER AIR WING
The carrier air wing of the future will consist of the following aircraft:
• 44 strike fighters (F/A-18E/F, F-35C, F/A-18E/F Replacement*)
• 5 electronic attack aircraft (EA-18G, EA-18G Replacement)
• 5 airborne early warning and command and control aircraft (E-2D)
• 19 helicopters (MH-60R/S or MH-60R/S Replacement). Current projections include
deploying 11 helicopters aboard the carrier, with the remaining 8 dispersed to other
ships in the strike group
• 2-3 Future Carrier Onboard Delivery aircraft will normally be embarked to support
the air wing and strike group
• The Navy Unmanned Carrier-Launched Airborne Surveillance and Strike System
is expected to reach an initial capability in 2018. One option is to have 4-6 aircraft
embarked.
* The F/A-18E/F Replacement may include a mix of manned, optionally manned,
or unmanned platforms.

&
NAVY TACTICAL AIRCRAFT
F-35C Lightning II
The Joint Strike Fighter program is building a tri-service family of next-generation, “day one”-capable, strike-fighter aircraft that is flexible and survivable. With its all-aspect stealth strike design, internal weapon carriage, fully fused mission systems, and unrefueled combat radius of greater than 600 nautical miles, the Navy’s F-35C Lightning II will complement the capabilities of the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet now serving as the Navy’s premier strike fighter. The F-35C will enhance the flexibility, power projection, and strike capabilities of carrier air wings and joint task forces.

F/A-18E/F Super Hornet/F/A-18E/F Replacement
There are a number of enhancements to the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet that will sustain its lethality well into the 21st century. Upgrades include critical growth capability, enhanced survivability, and the ability to land on carriers with a greater quantity of unexpended ordnance without exceeding maximum landing weight. Avionics upgrades for the F/A-18E/F Block II include the APG-79 Active Electronically Scanned Array Radar System, the Infrared Search and Track System, and advanced sensor integration. Future avionics upgrades will enable network-centric operations, which will enhance situational awareness and the transfer of data to command-and-control nodes. The Super Hornet also fills the critical organic tanking mission for carrier air wings, extending the operational reach of the nation’s sea power.

Naval Aviation continues to study the capabilities required when the F/A-18E/F reaches the limits of its service life beginning in 2025. The assessment is the initial stage of the requirements and acquisition process; it will evaluate a full range of considerations for addressing future Navy needs and recapitalization issues, including manned, unmanned, and system-of-systems options. The capabilities assessed during the study will be further developed and refined through operational analytical modeling and simulation, potentially leading to an analysis of alternatives and, eventually, a competitive fly-off between various industry proposals for the F/A-18E/F Replacement.
&
EA-18G Growler / EA-18G Replacement
The EA-6B Prowler has long served as the nation’s foremost tactical airborne electronic attack platform. In December 2001, the Navy completed an analysis of alternatives for electronic attack, laying the foundation for the replacement of the Prowler with the EA-18G Growler. The Growler leveraged the investments made in the ALQ-218 receiver system, which is the heart of the EA-6B Improved Capability III program. The next step is to replace the ALQ-99 Tactical Jamming System with the Next Generation Jammer (NGJ), with an initial operational capability anticipated in 2020. Development of NGJ is critical to the Navy’s vision for the future of airborne electronic attack and is a vital component of the Defense Department’s plan to build a joint system-of-systems electronic attack capability. The EA-18G is already in service, and saw its first combat sorties in Libya. Full operational capability is scheduled for 2015. By 2032, the EA-18G Replacement aircraft will have begun replacing the EA-18G Growler.
&
Unmanned Carrier-Launched Airborne Surveillance and Strike System
The Unmanned Carrier-Launched Airborne Surveillance and Strike System (UCLASS) will provide a persistent, aircraft carrier-based reconnaissance and strike capability to support carrier air wing operations beginning in the 2018 timeframe. The system will maximize use of existing technology to launch and control the air vehicle, transfer data in support of precision strike, and conduct persistent surveillance operations. It will consist of an air vehicle, a remote vehicle control-and-connectivity segment, a carrier segment, and connectivity to existing Defense Department tasking, processing, exploitation, and dissemination systems. The system will be integrated into carrier-controlled airspace operations and it will be maintained in accordance with standard fleet processes as tailored for unmanned application. It will contain balanced survivability attributes that will be effective in specified tactical situations. Formal acquisition and contracting strategies are in development.
&
MARINE CORPS TACTICAL AIR CRAFT
F-35B/C Lightning II
The Marine Corps’s AV-8B Harrier, EA-6B Prowler, and F/A-18A/C/D Hornet aircraft will be replaced with the F-35 Lightning II B and C models. The Lightning II combines multirole, low-observable, fifth-generation capabilities with the flexibility required for expeditionary basing. The F-35 will allow the Marine Corps to provide a wide range of air operational options and tactical supremacy to task force commanders.

EA-6B Prowler / Electronic Warfare System of Systems
The Marine Corps will continue to fly the Improved Capability III EA-6B Prowler as a capability bridge to a scalable system of systems able to support the needs of Marine airground task force (MAGTF) and joint commanders. Unmanned systems payloads, ground systems, and joint improvements to the F-35 under development will enable a distributed electronic warfare capability suitable for Marine operations.
&
AIR-TO-AIR WEAPONS
AIM-9X Block II/P3I Sidewinder

The AIM-9X Sidewinder is a major upgrade to the AIM-9M short-range air-to-air missile that provides U.S. fighters with the ability to defeat tomorrow’s advanced threats. The AIM-9X system contains a focal-plane-array guidance-control section, a highly maneuverable airframe, and signal processors that enhance kinematics and infrared countermeasure capabilities. The AIM-9X Block II/Pre-Planned Product Improvement (P3I) program will provide warfighters with increased lethality, high off-boresight capability, and a data link to take full advantage of increased kinematics and range. When combined with the Joint Helmet-Mounted Cueing System, AIM-9X provides a “first-look, first-shoot” weapon option. Sidewinder was originally a “within visual-range missile”; with modernization, it has become a “beyond visual-range missile.”"
RAN FAA A4G: http://tinyurl.com/ctfwb3t http://tinyurl.com/ccmlenr http://www.youtube.com/user/bengello/videos
Offline

count_to_10

Elite 2K

Elite 2K

  • Posts: 2080
  • Joined: 10 Mar 2012, 15:38

Unread post19 Apr 2012, 23:18

Actually, can someone explain to me what the Supper Hornet does that the F-35 won't?
I have a suspicion that the successor to the F/A-18 will be some kind of Air-to-Air optimized version of the F-35. Coming up with a new airframe will very expensive, so I expect history will repeat itself.
Einstein got it backward: one cannot prevent a war without preparing for it.
Offline

SpudmanWP

Elite 3K

Elite 3K

  • Posts: 4764
  • Joined: 12 Oct 2006, 19:18
  • Location: California

Unread post19 Apr 2012, 23:32

Have a guy in the back seat.. that's about it.
"The early bird gets the worm but the second mouse gets the cheese."
Offline

southernphantom

Forum Veteran

Forum Veteran

  • Posts: 825
  • Joined: 06 Aug 2011, 17:18
  • Location: Somewhere in Dixie

Unread post19 Apr 2012, 23:46

count_to_10 wrote:Actually, can someone explain to me what the Supper Hornet does that the F-35 won't?
I have a suspicion that the successor to the F/A-18 will be some kind of Air-to-Air optimized version of the F-35. Coming up with a new airframe will very expensive, so I expect history will repeat itself.


No, it won't. The USN has stated that this will be a two-seat, twin-engine fighter. I would like to point out that F/A-XX must and will be manned, at least not at first. UCAVs (FSM is insulting to a 5th-generation jet fighter, not to mention inaccurate) have an atrociously high loss rate. As of 2007, 53 MQ-1s had been lost, mostly due to operational accidents. This represented, at the time, a 38% loss rate. This would quite possibly skyrocket if the aircraft was flown off a carrier, and a loaded fighter crashing into a carrier's island or parked aircraft is far more serious than a flying snowmobile plowing into a mountain in the middle of Afghanistan.

If F/A-XX is unmanned, I believe that it will probably be for select missions in the far future (c. 2040). The cost of replacing dozens of extremely expensive fighters because the crew's SA is nonexistent will be unacceptable, and this is before getting into possible combat losses.

-Southern
Offline

maus92

Elite 1K

Elite 1K

  • Posts: 1655
  • Joined: 21 May 2010, 17:50
  • Location: Annapolis, MD

Unread post20 Apr 2012, 01:13

SpudmanWP wrote:Have a guy in the back seat.. that's about it.


And that valuable second engine for extended range hops over water.
Offline

madrat

Elite 1K

Elite 1K

  • Posts: 1021
  • Joined: 03 Mar 2010, 03:12

Unread post20 Apr 2012, 12:30

Just use an emergency engine mounted on a drop tank where you can ditch it if you run into other trouble and have to ditch it.
Offline

SpudmanWP

Elite 3K

Elite 3K

  • Posts: 4764
  • Joined: 12 Oct 2006, 19:18
  • Location: California

Unread post20 Apr 2012, 14:38

maus92 wrote:
SpudmanWP wrote:Have a guy in the back seat.. that's about it.


And that valuable second engine for extended range hops over water.


F-16s have been doing that since forever with no issue.
"The early bird gets the worm but the second mouse gets the cheese."
Offline

count_to_10

Elite 2K

Elite 2K

  • Posts: 2080
  • Joined: 10 Mar 2012, 15:38

Unread post21 Apr 2012, 00:58

madrat wrote:Just use an emergency engine mounted on a drop tank where you can ditch it if you run into other trouble and have to ditch it.

That's actually a really interesting idea. I wonder if it would actually work.
Offline

Corsair1963

Elite 2K

Elite 2K

  • Posts: 2652
  • Joined: 19 Dec 2005, 04:14

Unread post21 Apr 2012, 09:19

The F/A-XX has not been funded as of yet. So, by time the Super Hornet is in need of replacement starting in 10-15 year time frame. The USN/USMC may decide to just order more F-35's and/or X-47. Remember, the US Military is struggling to fund the F-35. Let alone spending billions on a Super Hornet replacement.
Next

Return to Modern Military Aircraft

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests