Finnish DefMin Interest in F-35s NOT Gripens

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14yellow14

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Unread post06 Sep 2021, 15:45

In terms of the SM-6's ASuW capabilities, this recent test highlights some important things:

Unmanned Systems, Passive Sensors Help USS John Finn Bullseye Target With SM-6

https://news.usni.org/2021/04/26/unmann ... -with-sm-6

Using a blend of information from unmanned and manned ships and aircraft, a guided-missile destroyer launched an anti-surface missile from over-the-horizon to hit a target more than 250 miles away without using active sensors as part of the Unmanned Integrated Battle Problem 21, Navy officials said on Monday.

The anti-surface missile shot of the SM-6 is a proof of concept of how the Navy could augment its very powerful but very detectable targeting radars with a blended network of passive sensors that could share targeting data without alerting the target. The test also shows how the lethal radius of a surface-launched missile could expand well beyond a ship’s radar range, which is limited by the curvature of the Earth.



;)
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hornetfinn

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Unread post07 Sep 2021, 06:29

riddu wrote:
ricnunes wrote:So yes, SM-6 Block IB (but not Block IA) will have a range of 1000 miles or more. As such I stand corrected and I thank you guys for the info!


Yeah, that would bring in interesting capabilities. However, this thread is about Finland. I would say that SM-6 BlkIB, TLAM and AARGM-ER are too expensive for Finland. Targeting might also be an issue and they might not even be politically acceptable. JASMM-ER, JSM, SM-2 Blk IIIC and PrSM are not cheap either but possible and even probable.


I think this is pretty much correct. I doubt Finland will buy SM-2 missiles but our new multi-role Pohjanmaa corvettes will get ESSM missiles which can engage surface targets also but naturally the range and effectiveness will be more limited than with SM-6 or SM-2. But against most ships in the Baltic Sea, they would still be pretty dangerous. These corvettes will have only 8 Mk41 VLS cells, which means there can be up to 32 ESSM missile in quadpacks, but only 8 SM-2s.
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riddu

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Unread post07 Sep 2021, 21:06

hornetfinn wrote:These corvettes will have only 8 Mk41 VLS cells, which means there can be up to 32 ESSM missile in quadpacks, but only 8 SM-2s.


There seems to be room for a second 8-cell Mk 41 and a couple of 3-cell EXLS. That gives 24 ESSM and 16 SM-2/6 missiles. Currently there is just no money for those extra missiles. Finnish MLRS are also still short of ammution, although the situation is now better.
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wrightwing

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Unread post07 Sep 2021, 21:47

hornetfinn wrote:
riddu wrote:
ricnunes wrote:So yes, SM-6 Block IB (but not Block IA) will have a range of 1000 miles or more. As such I stand corrected and I thank you guys for the info!


Yeah, that would bring in interesting capabilities. However, this thread is about Finland. I would say that SM-6 BlkIB, TLAM and AARGM-ER are too expensive for Finland. Targeting might also be an issue and they might not even be politically acceptable. JASMM-ER, JSM, SM-2 Blk IIIC and PrSM are not cheap either but possible and even probable.


I think this is pretty much correct. I doubt Finland will buy SM-2 missiles but our new multi-role Pohjanmaa corvettes will get ESSM missiles which can engage surface targets also but naturally the range and effectiveness will be more limited than with SM-6 or SM-2. But against most ships in the Baltic Sea, they would still be pretty dangerous. These corvettes will have only 8 Mk41 VLS cells, which means there can be up to 32 ESSM missile in quadpacks, but only 8 SM-2s.

If they can get ESSM-ER in service, that would make up for no SM-2s.
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hornetfinn

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Unread post08 Sep 2021, 07:59

riddu wrote:
hornetfinn wrote:These corvettes will have only 8 Mk41 VLS cells, which means there can be up to 32 ESSM missile in quadpacks, but only 8 SM-2s.


There seems to be room for a second 8-cell Mk 41 and a couple of 3-cell EXLS. That gives 24 ESSM and 16 SM-2/6 missiles. Currently there is just no money for those extra missiles. Finnish MLRS are also still short of ammution, although the situation is now better.


That seems to be correct as there definitely seems to be room reserved for additional VLS cells. Your suggestion would be awesome, but I'd be happy if they manage to fill all the currently available cells with ESSM (preferably Block 2) missiles. Like you noted, there is currently no money for much more.
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magitsu

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Unread post13 Sep 2021, 17:50

Less than 100 days until we know the winner. I's been a long journey... and in some more concrete ways it only starts there.
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magitsu

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Unread post15 Sep 2021, 12:09

Italy joined Typhoon's new radar ECRS mk 2 developers alongside the UK.
https://www.leonardocompany.com/en/pres ... hoon-radar

It looks interesting, but since initial flight test kit is due 2022 I can only imagine the trouble trying to assess its performance now. HX does 2025, 2030 and then a more vague plausibility assessment for the years after.

Also;
“Our offer to Finland will replicate our EJ200 final assembly facility here in the UK” - Francis Kearney,
@RollsRoyce Defence talking to members of the Finnish media about the EUROJET offer for @eurofighter at #DSEI2021 today."
https://twitter.com/BAES_Finland/status ... 8534812678

Engine final assembly facility takes care of a significant portion of the 30% industrial participation requirement. But is it strictly necessary? Probably not, but BAE+RR decided to go further than US candidates (Boeing's unique angle is offering some civilian airliner related work). Interesting, but style points are only imaginary since this part is not assessed.
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steve2267

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Unread post15 Sep 2021, 12:47

On the one hand, engine final assembly sounds pretty fantastic. But on the other hand, it is simply putting all the pieces together. The secret sauce to gas turbine creation is the material science, the ability to grow these single crystal metallurgical wonders, to create advanced, high temperature ceramic composites, to precisely cast these parts, and to machine them as necessary. The computer analysis codes, as complex and potentially proprietary as they are, are probably the easiest part of the whole gas turbine sauce making. So in the end, the offer is to teach the Finns and let them assemble the tinker toys, not how to create the bits in the first place.
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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magitsu

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Unread post15 Sep 2021, 14:10

Yeah, I'd like to imagine that these kind of offers are entertained only to the extent they are necessary to achieve great maintenance knowledge. Then if there's nothing better they might be accepted in a larger scope. But there should be no specific ambitions involved since it's unrealistic to expect them to get any more business beyond building their own engines.

So basically building few instead of all should be equally valuable if there's no further knowledge gain. There should be plenty of more realistic business to invest in that already has some traction in Finnish aerospace industry.
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steve2267

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Unread post15 Sep 2021, 15:37

Your mention of increasing maintenance knowledge makes the LM approach of offering maintenance hubs to potential customers more interesting. Instead of just gaining the knowledge from "assembling the bits", LM's offer of creating maintenance hubs for different pieces to various countries is rather insidious (and smart) because it 1) draws that country further into the F-35 ecosystem, and 2) offers that customer nation a potential source of recurring revenue for becoming the local experts for maintaining those systems offered.
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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hkultala

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Unread post15 Sep 2021, 23:19

I still have one fear for failing this HX project:

Politics.

We currently have a clueless left-wing government. The government does not like big companies or USA very much and would like to buy Gripen for purely political reasons.

The air force will clearly recommend F-35, but the government has the final word on selecting the plane. Practically, the government will need an excuse to go with Gripen, and any excuse will be enough for them.

One possible case might be that SAABs offer is slightly less than 10 billions, while other offers are exactly 10 billions. Then the goverment can say "All the planes fullfill our requirements, so we buy the cheapest one" even though air force very clearly would recommend F-35 and the price difference is very small.
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magitsu

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Unread post15 Sep 2021, 23:41

No way. The current government has funded more military than even previous conservative centre-right governments, due to the centre party getting the HX full replacement into the government programme as their prerequisite. The leftist parties would be much more rowdy if they weren't all in the government (e.g. the Left Alliance has multiple times penalized their two troublemakers Yrttiaho and Mustajärvi who keep criticizing the fighter acquisition against their party's and the govermnent programs). The conservative right parties in the opposition won't make any trouble.

Very few thought it was possible that the earlier presented 7-10 billion project cost would be set at it's maximum at 10.

FDF will give only one recommendation and it would be malpractice if they made a scheme that doesn't lead into a clear winner. So they won't get a chance. Either way Gripen likely won't be the 2nd best performing, so it's even less possible to end up with it. It could receive something like the Swiss leak if the choice veered too much from the HX Challenge validated reality.
hkultala wrote:any excuse will be enough for them.

Nothing supports this.

There' isn't a tradition in trying to save money when it comes to fighters. The Hornets were bought with the idea of "best capability" for the allocated money. The same is even clearer now as it's the only ranking criteria. Picking a slightly cheaper package makes sense only in Switzerland where there's a threat of public referendums. It would be weird if any candidate even offered a cheaper package (Saab clearly pushes this narrative in public, but it doesn't need to have any relation to the BAFO itself), because they'd be leaving capability at the table. Which is needed to place high in the ranking.

Politicians don't like to take decades long extra responsibility unless the FDF looks it can't reach a conclusion. I expect them to follow the recommendation, because then they can throw them under the bus if necessary.
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hkultala

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Unread post16 Sep 2021, 07:20

magitsu wrote:No way. The current government has funded more military than even previous conservative centre-right governments, due to the centre party getting the HX full replacement into the government programme as their prerequisite.


The requirements of the HX process were set by the previous governments. The only thing this goverment has done is continuing the path previous governments decided without aborting or downshifting it.

The leftist parties would be much more rowdy if they weren't all in the government (e.g. the Left Alliance has multiple times penalized their two troublemakers Yrttiaho and Mustajärvi who keep criticizing the fighter acquisition against their party's and the govermnent programs). The conservative right parties in the opposition won't make any trouble.


What individual opposition members shout have zero effect on the decision, when they are very small minority. The government has the majority on the parlament. Goverment decides what fighter the parlament votes about, and parlament can either accept who buy or decline it. And decline will not mean "lets vote for another figher next week", it means "lets re-evaluate the whole buy and spend 5 years during it and suddenly urgently spent lots of money for extending the lift our our Hornets".

Very few thought it was possible that the earlier presented 7-10 billion project cost would be set at it's maximum at 10.


.. and this is the MAXIMUM cost. not MINUMUM It does not mean that the government decided for sure to spend 10 billions.

Actually, Finnish goverment has only budjeted 9.4 billions for the HX project

https://budjetti.vm.fi/indox/sisalto.js ... 10/10.html

FDF will give only one recommendation and it would be malpractice if they made a scheme that doesn't lead into a clear winner. So they won't get a chance.


The suggestion of finnish air force is not binding. The government can put a vote about different plane to the parlament.

hkultala wrote:any excuse will be enough for them.

Nothing supports this.

There' isn't a tradition in trying to save money when it comes to fighters. The Hornets were bought with the idea of "best capability" for the allocated money.


The hornets were bought when we had a right-wing government.

Now we have a left-wing government which dislikes USA.

Politicians don't like to take decades long extra responsibility unless the FDF looks it can't reach a conclusion. I expect them to follow the recommendation, because then they can throw them under the bus if necessary.


Most left-wing politicians don't take responsibility of ANYTHING they do. They like to collect popularism points with claims like from "we bought the cheap wonder plane from our swedish friends instead of those evil and greedy american military-industry megacorporations". That their claims are not very true does not matter to the ignorant public that votes them, because the ignorant public does not know this is not true.

Our foreign minister made a clear a very clear violation almost 2 years ago and he is still our foreign minister.
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hornetfinn

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Unread post16 Sep 2021, 07:29

I totally agree with magitsu. Our latest defence budget looks very good IMO for example and USA is one of the three countries specifically mentioned for bilateral cooperation. Sweden and Norway are the other two. I don't see any reason to believe that the politicians would not go with the recommended fighter. They have almost always done that no matter what their political orientation has been. I really don't think this time will be any different. Especially as they are really under the microscope on this one.
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