UK MOD in a muddle over F-35C

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spazsinbad

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Unread post09 Feb 2021, 10:32

This quote may just be a typical UK news 'beat up' this time by a more respected but anonymous source. Any info known?
OLD PDF of article attached. I recall the 'tape damage around the F-35B CANOPY/cockpit will be replaced with better tape soon - perhaps this is the cause for the 'maintain lo obs coating' quote below - which is otherwise UNBELIEVABLE!
The trainee, the novice and the highly experienced: the UK's strike aircraft
Feb 2019 UNKanon

"...Other questions surrounding the F-35B concern the heavy manpower requirement for its low-observable coatings, and
the deployability of the UK’s low observable repair capability...."

Source: AIR International February 2019 Vol.96 No.2
Attachments
F-35B UK IOC AIR International Feb 2019.pdf
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Unread post16 Feb 2021, 00:11

RN Strike Group QE with F-35Bs video:
https://r6---sn-uxanug5-ntqk.googlevide ... 210210.1.0
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Unread post16 Feb 2021, 03:44

Article about the economic benefit to UK participating in F-35 programme as a TIER ONE partner since at least 1985 VAAC:

F-35: An Economic and Skills Engine for the UK 15 Feb 2021 LM PR:
https://www.f35.com/f35/news-and-featur ... he-uk.html
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Unread post17 Feb 2021, 02:26

Some five? months ago there was concern about REAL bombs onboard QE: viewtopic.php?f=58&t=15969&p=445209&hilit=real#p445209 Here are some answers along with a six page PDF with text extracs below.
THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK
Mar 2020 Richard Scott

"Combat Aircraft Journal looks at the latest step in the regeneration of UK Carrier Strike with the completion of F-35B operational testing from HMS Queen Elizabeth late last year....

...WEAPON MOVEMENTS
A single end-to-end weapon test was executed during ‘WESTLANT 19’. Capt James Blackmore said: ‘We already know the aircraft can drop bombs, so we just did one live weapon event to demonstrate the whole chain, right through from bringing two Paveway IVs [precision-guided bombs] up from the deep magazine to dropping them on the target.’

While there was only one weapon drop, Queen Elizabeth’s Highly Mechanized Weapon Handling System (HMWHS) was run for the duration of ‘WESTLANT 19’ to perform dummy moves of ordnance. Based on automated, all-electric commercial warehousing processes — suitably adapted for safe transport and munitions stowage in a warship environment — the HMWHS system combines mechanical handling facilities for moving palletized munitions around the deep magazine and weapon preparation areas, and a series of weapons lifts to connect the magazines, hangar, weapons preparation area and flight deck.

The HMWHS trials enabled assessment of weapon load times, configuration times and reconfiguration times. ‘So that was the whole process of using the handling system to deliver weapons into the prep areas, onto the deck, and then onto the jet,’ Blackmore said. ‘We did those loads multiple times on multiple aircraft. The system has proved both robust and reliable.’

US weapons boxes were also embarked to allow form and fit checks with the HMWHS. Queen Elizabeth will have a mix of US and UK air weapon stockpiles on board for CSG21....

...DT RW [Rotary Wing] trials also served to clear 12 additional rotary-wing spots on Queen Elizabeth’s flight deck. Blackmore said: ‘We have cleared two ranks of five on the main flight deck [‘Alpha’, ‘Bravo’, ‘Charlie’, ‘Delta’, and ‘Echo’ spots on the port side, and ‘Hotel’, ‘Juliet’, ‘Kilo’, ‘Lima’ and ‘Mike’ up the starboard side of the main runway] for both Merlin and Chinook. And where ‘6 spot’ is, on the starboard quarter, we have cleared two landing spots designated ‘November’ and ‘Papa’.

‘That’s really important because it means we can launch and recover helicopters from the starboard side while still operating jets off the main runway.’...

...Just prior to DT RW, a trial was performed to expand the operating limits for the US Marine Corps’ MV-22B Osprey tiltrotor. Having previously achieved day clearance on Queen Elizabeth during ‘WESTLANT 18’, a night trial was performed on September 19 by an MV-22B from Air Test and Evaluation Squadron (HX) 21 to assess Queen Elizabeth’s lighting, deck configuration, deck motion and handling qualities. A total of 22 deck landings were completed.

There is as yet no firm decision as to whether the MV-22B will form part of the USMC aviation element embarking on board Queen Elizabeth for the CSG21 deployment. Even so, the integration has now established the MV-22B as a credible maritime intra-theater lift solution, and will further enhance interoperability with the US.

Queen Elizabeth also played host to a CH-53E Super Stallion from Marine Operational Test and Evaluation Squadron One (VMX-1), which was used to ferry stores and personnel to the ship....

...The success of DT-1/DT-2 trials executed during ‘WESTLANT 18’ means that less than 25 per cent of F-35B test points are still outstanding. ‘What remains to be done is high deck motion, port and starboard off-bow facing maneuvers, and SRVL [short rolling vertical landing] envelope expansion,’ said Blackmore. ‘All of this is now being packaged up into DT-3.’ Blackmore concluded: ‘The attractiveness of doing DT-3 on Prince of Wales is that she is being fitted with the full-length Bedford Array [SRVL visual landing aid]. So as we’re working up the Carrier Strike Group here ready for that first deployment, Prince of Wales will be doing that developmental test in the Atlantic."

Source: Combat Aircraft Journal March 2020 Volume 21 No 3
Attachments
QE Empire Building Combat Aircraft Mar 2020 pp6.pdf
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Corsair1963

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Unread post17 Feb 2021, 05:43

NICE....and thanks!
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Unread post07 Mar 2021, 18:39

We're about a week from the publication of the defence review.

Strong reports now around that the UK will be ordering no-more than 48 aircaft, cancelling it's intention for 138.

This is in response to Brexit, Covid and funding Tempest. It is also a package of massive cuts which may see all tranche 1 Typhoons, 45 helicopters and all tanks retired.

48 aircraft after training and test aircraft are accounted for is not enough to have both carriers at sea with a standard compliment of 24 each, let alone a war surge of 40.

Andy
Andy Evans Aviation Photography
www.evansaviography.co.uk
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Unread post07 Mar 2021, 19:25

Too drastic, but here's what I think:

UK should insread get rid of Trident subs. This would:
1) Open up funds for a much more needed conventional assets. I.e. Argentina or Iraq weren't deterred by nukes but rather had been put back in place using conventional muscle delivered by ships and aircraft.
2) Turn the page in UNSC history. If UK as a permanent member were to give up nukes it would set a precedent for other non-nuclear powers to join. This would actually benefjt the entire free world as it would tip the balance in our favor (i.e. pushing for Germany, Japan etc to be members)

This would of course hardly happen. They would rather pretend to still be a superpower while having 12 frigates with no helicopters. The plus side of axing amphibious capability is that they would not have any tanks to transport anymore either.
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Unread post07 Mar 2021, 20:11

No details but some idea that the Brit ARMY will take the brunt of cuts - perhaps - and info is eight days away 16 Mar....:
Britain unveils date to release transformative military review
05 Mar 2021 Andrew Chuter

"LONDON — The British government said it will take the wraps off a review March 16 that is expected to fundamentally transform its defense capabilities....

...The review, which is already delayed, is expected to dictate the size and shape of the British military for years to come. Following its March 16 release, the Ministry of Defence on March 22 will publish the details of a defense modernization effort in which the Army is expected to take the brunt of capability cuts, notably in end strength and armored vehicles. The cuts are meant to help fund the purchase of cutting-edge weapons in the areas of space, cyber, underwater and unmanned warfare...."

Source: https://www.defensenews.com/global/euro ... ry-review/
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Unread post08 Mar 2021, 00:01

An article in the Sunday Times says that the UK F-35B buy will be capped at 48, which is quite a bit lower than the so-called Tier 1 partner had promised. The RAF is getting substantial cuts all around in order to pay for Tempest R&D.

An order for 90 more F-35 Lightning combat jets is to be cancelled in favour of the Tempest fighter, built in Lancashire, while 24 older Typhoon fighters will be retired early. Whole fleets of aircraft will be taken out of service as drones become ever more common.
The RAF will lose 11 manned spy planes, a 45 per cent cut, with the Sentinel and Islander aircraft not being replaced after their retirement this year. There will also be a gap in coverage from E-3D Sentry airborne early-warning radar planes for two to three years, while replacement Wedgetails will be cut from five to three. Also to be scrapped are 14 C-130J Hercules transport planes used by the SAS.
BAE-146 passenger jets from 32 (Royal) Squadron, used by the Queen, Prince Charles and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, will be replaced by leased aircraft. The transport helicopter fleet will be cut by 45 helicopters or 41%.


For the British Army,

The size of the army will be drastically reduced, with personnel to be cut by 10,000 by 2024 and a further 2,500 by 2030, to a target size of 70,000. Ministers aim to do this by cuts in recruitment rather than making soldiers redundant.
Army chiefs envisage a smaller, better-trained army, with better kit, operating as a high-skill, high-readiness unit similar to the US Marines. But that will involve the loss of legacy capabilities and reduce the war-fighting division from four to two armoured brigades and the shrinking or disbanding of 23 battalion-sized units. Cancelling an upgrade to 600 Warrior troop carriers will save £1.5 billion.
General Sir Mark Carleton-Smith, the chief of the general staff, has twice had to resubmit plans for the redesign because they did not feature enough robots, attack drones and AI. AS-90 155mm self-propelled howitzers and multi-launch rocket systems will be replaced late in the decade with attack drones and precision-guided rockets, while 89 howitzers dating from the 1970s will be withdrawn.


For the Royal Navy,

The Royal Navy gets new frigates, supply ships and underwater surveillance vessels. However, in the middle of this decade a third of the frigate fleet and half the nuclear attack submarines will have to be retired on safety grounds before replacements are ready, because of delays.


https://apple.news/A00AOKkQRS8GRWFJ7l6aV5A
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Unread post08 Mar 2021, 00:12

The Integrated Review – painful choices for the Royal Navy?
22 Feb 2021 NAVY LOOKOUT [formerly SaveTheRoyalNavy]

"The Integrated Review is due to be published in March 2021. In the next few weeks, rumours of how the review will impact the forces are likely to circulate in the media. An unconfirmed report in the Daily Mail suggests some of the older frigates will be retired early. Here we consider some of the options the RN may have and the implications for the surface escort fleet.

Blood on the carpet
Despite the encouraging pre-review commitments and new money allocated to defence announced in November 2020, there will still be very hard choices for all three Armed Services to make. The Treasury and Cabinet Office is determined to agree a force structure and equipment plan that is genuinely affordable and costed, unlike the 2015 ‘conspiracy of optimism’ SDSR. With a solid Parliamentary majority and no election for looming some time, the Tories now have the political strength to take this more difficult path.

The decisions to dispense with some conventional capabilities or ‘sacred cows’ will not be popular in many quarters but the MoD must live within its means. Having just promised a substantial uplift of 4.2% per year (above inflation) rise in spending, this administration at least, can be slightly shielded from accusations of making defence cuts. The capability gaps and lack of mass that characterises so many aspects of UK defence are the result of decades of underfunding, mismanagement and waste, the blame for which can be laid at the door of politicians of all colours, civil servants, senior officers and industry.


Source: https://www.navylookout.com/the-integra ... oyal-navy/
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steve2267

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Unread post08 Mar 2021, 01:07

Me thinks Great Britain slits her own throat. Buying into all sorts of new and wonderful technologies that are supposed to save pounds. Technology can be wonderful, but developing technology, especially military, can prove to be extremely expensive -- especially when mission creep and moving requirements come into play. Bureaucrats can never keep their fingers out, esp. when it comes to costs. Pence wise, pound foolish comes to mind.

Personally I will be surprised if Tempest ever flies.
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 post08 Mar 2021, 01:44

It's clear the UK Government / Treasury have no serious desire to increase Defense Spending! So, the future of the UK Military is very much in question.......


(sadly) :|
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Unread post08 Mar 2021, 04:13

steve2267 wrote:Personally I will be surprised if Tempest ever flies.


If the RAF and RN don't buy any more F-35Bs, the MoD will have to spend money on something. Tempest will probably be of the same 5th generation as F-35, except more optimized for high altitudes and speed. I would suspect the USAF's NGAD to be more impressive and probably to arrive earlier.
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Unread post08 Mar 2021, 04:56

talkitron wrote:
steve2267 wrote:Personally I will be surprised if Tempest ever flies.


If the RAF and RN don't buy any more F-35Bs, the MoD will have to spend money on something. Tempest will probably be of the same 5th generation as F-35, except more optimized for high altitudes and speed. I would suspect the USAF's NGAD to be more impressive and probably to arrive earlier.



I could see the UK going it alone with Tempest Program. If, they had adequate funding. Yet, when have they ever had "adequate funding"???

:doh:
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Unread post08 Mar 2021, 12:08

Incredible if the UK really ends up with only 48 F-35 -- Finland will then most likely end up with more F-35 than tier-1 partner nation the UK! (I am quite sure Finland will buy more than 50, due to the low unit cost of the F-35A).
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