More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

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ehv8oar
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by ehv8oar » Sun Jun 02, 2019 9:02 am

The F35 wont last until 2070 either. The simple truth is if it ever comes to it Canadas main role is to hold off an aggressor for as long as possible until the U.S comes along. You need a two engine aircraft. Since we cant buy the F22 the Typhoon is the best you're going to get for price and capabilities.
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by MUSKEG » Sun Jun 02, 2019 9:21 am

What Canada really needs but unfortunately cannot afford and is out of production at this time is the F22 Raptor.

No. What Canada needs is for the damn politicians give the procurement process to find a fighter to those that know what the hell they're talking about. That would leave almost all of us here out of the picture.
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by AuxBatOn » Sun Jun 02, 2019 9:37 am

ehv8oar wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 9:02 am
The F35 wont last until 2070 either. The simple truth is if it ever comes to it Canadas main role is to hold off an aggressor for as long as possible until the U.S comes along. You need a two engine aircraft. Since we cant buy the F22 the Typhoon is the best you're going to get for price and capabilities.
They may not last us till 2070 but they’ll last us further down the road than any other available options. We bought Hornets in 1981. We’re going to retire them in 2032. That’s 51 years. If we get the F-35 in 2025, that would mean retiring them in 2076. You bet this is what’ll happen.
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by Big Pistons Forever » Sun Jun 02, 2019 10:21 am

The elephant in the room is the pending reality of unmanned aircraft. A lot of kinetic effects are already being delivered by unmanned aircraft, something that was impossible less than 20 years ago.

Personally I think we are a Revolution in Military affairs inflection point similar to the introduction of the machine gun in the early 1900’s and the development of the aircraft carrier in the 1930’s and fielding of nuclear weapons in the 1950’s.

All of these developments profoundly changed how military conflicts were conducted and all of them were initially resisted by military leadership heavily invested in the status quo

The F35 will not be FMC until at least 2023 at which time it will already be verging on obsolescence.

What Canada needs is a proven fighter aircraft with costs fully controlled to get us to a Gen 6 unmanned solution

In the meantime it doesn’t matter how good the F35 is there is one number that kills it for Canada. The DOC is 35,000 $/hr. To put that in perspective the DOC for the Super Hornet is 18,000 $.

I have worked at NDHQ and I can tell you that there is simply not the political will to increase the defence budget sufficiently to pay the sustainment costs of this aircraft.

There is s reason why the only people in the RCAF who want this aircraft is the fighter guys. Everyone else knows buying the F35 will kill the airforce as it will suck money from every other airforce program
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by AuxBatOn » Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:26 am

There are no cheap options. I highly doubt the Super Hornet hourly costs, especially in the long term when parts becomes hard to find. Our Hornets cost more than this almost just in fuel alone The F-35 has thousands of customers and has good growth potential that other contenders don’t have.

UAS have been part of the environment for decades already in some capacity or others. They have inherent limitations however that won’t be easy to overcome. There are no real contenders yet that can fully replace a manned multi-role fighters. We have employed, UAS in various kinematic roles but it was in relatively benign environments. The 6th Gen will likely be optionally manned and the transition to fully unmanned will likely not happen till the 7th Gen. There are no known fully unmanned prototype strike-fighters that can do the job say a Strike Eagle or F-35 could do.
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by Big Pistons Forever » Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:48 am

Aux

You are right that there are no cheap options but even the US Military is starting to struggle with F35 sustainment costs. Of note the US Navy is starting to hedge their bets with a big F18 buy. The USN just reviewed their fleet plan and the F18 will be maintained as a front line deployable asset until at least 2040 with options to extend that to 2050.

As long as that happens anybody else operating an F18 will be fully supported.

As for the DOC you have to compare apples to apples. The DOC quoted was for US operations with the concomitant economies of scale. The bottom line is even the most optimistic projections from Lockheed show that the F35 costs twice as much to operate as compared to current fighter aircraft. Sustainment costs dwarf acquisition costs over a full lifecycle

The sad reality is we are in a “what should be” vs a “what is” dynamic

What should be is every member of the military regardless of which element they are in should get the best available equipment. The reality is plus or minus a little the annual defence budget has been, is, and will be around 20 Billion all in. Buying the F35 will inevitably mean other capabilities will have to go to afford it. So the question becomes the much broader one of “Why does Canada have a military and what do Canadians want it to do?”
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by Big Pistons Forever » Sun Jun 02, 2019 12:06 pm

AuxBatOn wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 11:26 am


UAS have been part of the environment for decades already in some capacity or others. They have inherent limitations however that won’t be easy to overcome. There are no real contenders yet that can fully replace a manned multi-role fighters. We have employed, UAS in various kinematic roles but it was in relatively benign environments. The 6th Gen will likely be optionally manned and the transition to fully unmanned will likely not happen till the 7th Gen. There are no known fully unmanned prototype strike-fighters that can do the job say a Strike Eagle or F-35 could do.
History has shown that militaries have always been slow to recognize the emergence of disruptive technologies. The general trend has been a forward thinking early adopter smashes the status quo thinking causing a rush of innovation by everyone else. In the last 150 years very rapid and fundamental changes on the battlefield all started with a new technology. I don’t think it is a coincidence that China is out investing the world combined in Artificial Intelligence technologies

One the things that has always struck me about the Canadian Military in general was the fact that it is a brutally tactical organization. There is almost no big picture thinking anywhere.
That is one thing I always admired about the US military. Many of their General and Flag officers have post graduate education in Liberal Arts subjects such as International Affairs or history. They have think tanks that think about the big strategic questions and there is currently a very lively debate about whether the current Americans force structure is resilient and adaptable enough to weather future technologies.
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by B208 » Sun Jun 02, 2019 5:53 pm

Big Pistons Forever wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 10:21 am
The elephant in the room is the pending reality of unmanned aircraft. A lot of kinetic effects are already being delivered by unmanned aircraft, something that was impossible less than 20 years ago.
The work well, in a permissive environment.
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by schnitzel2k3 » Sun Jun 02, 2019 8:35 pm

TSAM wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 7:59 am
schnitzel2k3 wrote:
Sun Jun 02, 2019 6:32 am

Are there any other 5th gen fighters that make sense for us to look at, or are we cornered with a single engine U.S stealth fighter?
SU-57 8)
(I know your answer was tongue in cheek)

While I love the Su's, and the ingenuity and ferocity that the Russians build into them, I thought I had read they were having major production issues of their own, particularly with the 57.

They'd be an interesting option if Russia wasn't the constant global 'bad guy' as per many in the West.

Good luck getting those system to line up with U.S Norad communications, lol.

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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by schnitzel2k3 » Mon Jun 03, 2019 4:36 am

I clearly have been wading into this debate a lot because my news feed is full of fighter stuff now - big brother is watching :shock: - and clearly providing decent reading material - thank you Google. This article popped up this morning and seemed apropos to include here as it sums up the U.S' issue with the F35 and how to balance it's own fleet with costs and mission readiness and whether a 4th gen fighter can stand side by side with a 5th gen.

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F-15EX: THE STRATEGIC BLIND SPOT IN THE AIR FORCE’S FIGHTER DEBATE
MIKE BENITEZ JUNE 3, 2019
COMMENTARY
The fallout from the U.S. Air Force’s request to buy F-15EX fighter jets to replace the aging F-15C/D Eagle has certainly been entertaining, if controversial. Largely driven by lobbyist influence mixed with self-interest, a number of lawmakers and retired generals reflexively viewed the proposal to buy 144 F-15EXs as a threat to the 80-year 1,763 F-35A program. They predictably advocate that buying more F-35As — not F-15EXs — is the solution to replace the deteriorating F-15C/D fleet, whose shortcomings are inherent to operating a 35-year old fighter that averages 8,300 flight hours but was originally designed to fly just 4,000 hours. This camp’s message is that the F-15EX is an outdated fighter from the 1960s, equipped with decades old technology, is not survivable, not effective, is of little operational relevance, does not support the National Defense Strategy, and is more expensive than the only U.S. Air Force fighter currently in production — the F-35.

Brad Orgeron’s recent article explored four options that would sustain the fighter air superiority fleet over the next 20 years by detailing possible procurement combinations of three aircraft —F-15C, F-15EX, and F-35A. His research provided a much-needed objective and analytical voice to a conversation that has become overwhelmingly subjective and emotional. Building on that, I hope to offer yet a different perspective. Spoiler: The F-15EX and F-35A are both needed, but not in the way the debate has been framed and not in a way most defense professionals have been conditioned to think. To understand this requires the conversation begin with strategy — something that many voices in the debate appear to have overlooked.

Strategic Competition in Action, or Inaction?

Since the U.S. National Defense Strategy called for “the reemergence of long-term strategic competition,” strategic competition has become another well-worn buzzword referenced in speeches, statements, interviews, and congressional hearings. Despite some form of “competition” being mentioned over 60 times in the 2017 U.S. National Security Strategy and 2018 National Defense Strategy there is still no definition within the Department of Defense to unify words, thought, and action.

That said, traditionally military leaders, strategists, and planners are culturally ingrained to think about how to win if deterrence fails, mirroring the western view of warfare in absolute terms — victory or defeat; war or peace. People with this mental framework risk misinterpreting strategic competition as an arms race to build a gold-plated fighting force that sufficiently deters an adversary and can ensure an expeditious victory if deterrence fails. But that’s not accurate.

In the 1980s, the idea of competitive strategies became popular in corporate America and the concept of strategic competition emerged in both the C-suite and the E-ring. In this context, the idea is best described as a methodology to disrupt target markets in precise ways that generate deliberate competitive shifts. The goal is to dissuade competitors in certain geographic, technical, and ideological areas and push them towards ones that better align with U.S. interests over the long term. Like a business jockeying for market share, competition is perpetual and infinite, a series of ever-shifting temporary states of winning and losing — not victory or defeat.

Viewed through a military lens, strategic competition should continually produce a range of variables that can be mixed and matched to produce exponentially more capabilities that provides a unique versatility to commanders that can be used to complicate a competitor’s situation. This should sound familiar, as it’s the marketing pitch for today’s multi-domain operations.

The realized strategy (the end) rarely matches the intended strategy (the beginning) because a strategy can — and should — evolve over time. The Mintzberg model acknowledges that the realized strategy is actually a combination of both deliberate and emergent strategies. As a strategy is executed, various smaller emergent strategies are coupled and decoupled to the long-term deliberate strategy as new opportunities present themselves.

What does this have to do with the F-15EX and F-35A? The F-35A represents the deliberate part of the strategy, while the F-15EX represents the emergent part. F-35A may be the generational foundation for the Air Force’s fighter force structure strategy through the 2070s, but the way it is traditionally envisioned for use has little to do with the emerging framework of strategic competition (note China and Russia have been developing stealth-negating weapons systems for 20 years). However, coupling the F-35A with other rapidly-fielded force structure opportunities like the F-15EX enables the Air Force to engage very effectively in strategic competition. This is how it’s possible to remain committed to the F-35A while also supporting the F-15EX. In other words, this is how both sides are right.

Now, how both sides are wrong. Just because the F-15EX has the potential to engage in strategic competition doesn’t mean it’s happening. Defense officials have indicated that the rationale for buying the fighter is based on a number-crunching cost efficiency business case, while Air Force officials have cautiously noted the F-15EX is meant to complement the F-35 across the spectrum of conflict and would serve as a capacity and readiness backstop for traditional F-15C/D missions. This is the predicable, boring company line. Procuring new F-15EXs, even with its impressive 12 air-to-air missile magazine, to perform traditional forward defense forward base defense and protection of high-value airborne assets has nothing to do with strategic competition — but neither does simply buying more F-35As for this purpose.

The litmus test for strategic competition is simple: Will an adversary care about this, and if so, why? In the end, if China or Russia doesn’t care which platform Congress chooses to replace the aging F-15C/D fleet with, neither should the warfighters. It simply becomes a decision grounded in politics, emotion, and parochial interest — not strategy or national defense. It doesn’t have to be this way, though. The F-15EX — currently both maligned by backers of the F-35A and misunderstood by the Air Force officials buying it — has all the potential to be the disruptive force in strategic competition that the Air Force sorely needs, albeit in a dramatically different fashion than anyone has been discussing.

This mentality first requires that we stop thinking in terms of labels like “fighters” and “fourth generation” and instead view a platform for its attributes and potential — the F-15 is not the aircraft you think it is.

Not Your Father’s F-15

Originating as the U.S. response to the Soviet Union’s Mach 3 MiG-25 interceptor, the Mach 2.5 F-15 was built around a massive radar and sized to carry large long-range counter-air missiles. Beyond its large size (20 percent larger than the F-35), it was engineered before the advent of computers and digital fly-by-wire systems. Because of this, the F-15 has an aeronautically stable design that current fly-by-wire fighters do not have. Most importantly, these attributes have permitted it to evolve. Today’s F-15 is not a Nixon-era fighter anymore than the F-35 is an early 1990s fighter.

Once lauded as a fighter with “not a pound for air-to-ground,” the original light gray F-15C/D Eagle air superiority fighter evolved into the dual-seat dark gray multirole F-15E Strike Eagle that has been a staple of virtually every U.S. Air Force combat operation since 1991. The F-15E serves as the basic model for the F-15I, F-15K, F-15S, F-15SA, and F-15SG export variants and is what the F-15EX improves on. The F-15E’s size and reinforced structure trade some of traditional fighters’ speed and maneuverability to gain the best range, payload, and capacity for sensors of any fighter in the U.S. inventory. Not only can it employ virtually every weapon in the U.S. and coalition inventory, it’s also comically versatile in terms of the combinations of configurations that can be flown. The same attributes also make the F-15 the workhorse for testing and fielding of new weapons, sensors, and emerging capabilities that eventually make it onto other fighters like the F-22 and F-35.

The modern F-15E shows how neatly compartmentalizing fighters into “generations” can be misleading and subconsciously shape our perceptions. Consider the fifth-generation F-35’s much-lauded sensor fusion. This is enabled by computing power, software, sensors, and algorithms; all items with high potential to scale to other platforms — and they have. Despite the hype, the reality is that almost all current fighters have had some form of sensor fusion for the better part of a decade. In fact, the newest, largest, and most capable radar and the highest computing power on a U.S. aircraft aren’t on a fifth-generation fighter — they’re on the F-15E.

In the time I’ve flown the F-15E I’ve seen it progress through seven major operational software updates (called suites) and various hardware upgrades, each more integrated and potent than the last. When the next software upgrade arrives it will have even more sensors and hardware. In fact, the only limitation keeping it from achieving sensor fusion on par with the F-35 is its cockpit displays. As an example of how sequestration and funding instability drive incoherent budget choices, nearly $12 billion in aforementioned F-15E sensor upgrades are still stubbornly pushed through 1980s displays that use cathode-ray tubes to produce low-quality analog video that aren’t even all color, let alone digital, touchscreen, or high-resolution. The impressive F-35 cockpit has all of this, and that makes all the difference. The F-15EX enhanced cockpit displays mirror the newest displays coming to both F/A-18 Block III and F-35 Block 4, mostly because they are all made by the same company.

The F-15 shows how targeted hardware and software investments unlock capabilities that blur the lines between generations of fighters. Capabilities alone do not comprise a strategy, though. It’s all about how those capabilities are applied.

Adaption, Not Innovation

At this point, the F-15EX naysayers often contend that even the most advanced fourth-generation fighters won’t be able to operate in future contested environments, that they are “incapable of participating against peer threats” — some have even gone as far as calling the idea of buying the F-15EX a moral issue. A think tank analysis best summarizes this camp’s flawed logic: “It is hard to imagine any high-end scenario where [these] fighters will be able to operate.”

Recall that strategic competition is largely about generating disruption. Broadly speaking, disruption typically happens in two ways. At one end is innovation, which military leadership has been endlessly calling for. This is reflected in the surge of research and development funding to explore promising new technology that takes many years to mature and manifest (if ever). At the other end is adaption, where users of equipment find new ways to use combinations of what is available. Where the former is slow, bureaucratic, and well-funded, the latter is exactly the opposite.

BECOME A MEMBER

Adaption, not innovation, is the compelling variable in rapidly linking emergent strategies with deliberate strategies in strategic competition. Operators live in a world where the hope of innovation is not an option — we go to war with what we have. We adapt by embracing industriousness, ingenuity, and creativity to generate advantages on the battlefield and in the sky — we call this being tactical. Applying this mentality strategically would get the Air Force off the beaten path to find more rapid and disruptive ways to economically compete. Stop thinking about the F-15EX as a fighter and start viewing it as an adaptable platform.

Though the F-15 airframe was designed to be solely an air superiority fighter, it has been used to shoot down satellites, fly to 100,000 feet, manually pilot rocket-powered precision bombs onto targets before GPS, employ stealth cruise missiles, shoot over-the-horizon anti-ship missiles, simultaneously employ multiple 5,000 lb. bunker busters, and fly 800 miles per hour just 100 feet above the ground, at night, in the weather — on autopilot. It’s even been turned into a thrust vectoring Mach 2 NASA flight test vehicle capable of taking off at just 42 mph and landing on less than 1,700 feet of runway. None of these uses were a product of the F-15’s original capabilities. Rather, they came from adaption, which was in turn built off knowledge gained from hundreds of thousands of flight hours and decades of flight science research with a platform with enabling attributes.

Earlier this year, Air Force officials caught the attention of defense media when they mentioned that the F-15EX could potentially be used as a hypersonics launch platform. Fighter-launched hypersonic weapons are an interesting example of creating a new disruptive effect via adaption. Similarly, the defense world took notice when Russia announced that MiG-31 fighters had already launched a dozen hypersonic weapons in testing. Using F-15s to launch hypersonic weapons is not hard, mostly because it’s not new. In 2002 DARPA’s HyFly program sought to launch a 400-mile Mach 6 hypersonic from an F-15E, and in 2007 NASA used an F-15B as a Mach 5 hypersonic research test bed. To compete in this realm, the Air Force should publicly declare ambitious tests on compressed timelines to not only launch one of the emerging hypersonic weapons from an F-15, but also produce a timeline for full fleet integration.

Another ingenious example of adaption comes from the Israeli Air Force, which has used the F-15 to launch medium-range air-launched ballistic missiles as test targets for over a decade. The largest is the Silver Sparrow, a 27-foot long, 6,900 lb. missile that has an apogee 90 miles high (for perspective, space starts at 62 miles). Though it’s already proven on the F-15, there is nothing remotely comparable in the U.S. inventory today. The closest attempt was the nuclear-tipped GAM-87 Skybolt, which was cancelled in the 1960s. Incorporated in a package alongside current stand-off capabilities, fighters equipped with air-launched ballistic missiles could introduce a wildly disruptive and asymmetric problem for Chinese and Russian air defenses.

The Pacific offers numerous maritime opportunities for adaption. While some F-15 variants already perform anti-ship warfare with stand-off data-link weapons, fighters haven’t performed torpedo bombing since World War II. Given the proliferation of naval threats, F-15EXs equipped with winged aerial torpedoes could dynamically target submarines in contested airspace where the only air-launched torpedo platform — the Navy P-8 Poseidon — can’t operate. Similarly, F-15EXs could be outfitted with precision-guided winged naval mines to perform aerial mining in areas deemed too risky for the defenseless B-52. This is competing via adaption.

Opening the aperture of imagination even further, the F-15EX could be used to launch flying missile rails that can “mine airspace” to autonomously maintain pockets of air superiority to enable other missions — like Tony Stark’s Iron Legion freeing the Avengers to tackle other priorities. Or perhaps it could be used for delivering long endurance cluster drones or employing swarms-on-demand to provide much-needed range, reach, and loiter that promising new tactical air control concepts lack. Maybe it’s deploying and controlling unmanned teammates via the missionized rear cockpit, or being an air-launched decoy/jammer truck, or delivering stand-off non-kinetic weapons, or being a mothership for attributable penetrating electric attack platforms, or being an agile foundation for launch-on-demand satellite constellations that are responsive and unpredictable. Now imagine all of these concepts not launched from a vulnerable base or a runway — but from a highway, enabled by the budding combat support wing initiative. This is what strategic competition looks like.

Finally, for perspective on adaption, look at the venerable B-52 Stratofortress. When it entered service in 1952, no one could have imagined a bomber would be used to shoot nuclear cruise missiles, deliver stand-off precision-guided naval mines, put satellites into orbit, launch a Mach 9 hypersonic vehicle, or serve as a flight test bed for NASA. Thanks to its sheer mass and rugged design, it can accommodate the size, weight, and power considerations of emerging technology and will remain relevant for 100 years of operations — stealth not required. If you think this sounds a lot like F-15EX, you’re right.

These ideas provide a glimpse of new ways to embrace adaption to deliver effects that enable — rather than inhibit — other platforms, all while subscribing to the warfighting principles of mass, maneuver, economy of force, security, and simplicity. Updating a common phrase that originated from an airpower zealot a century ago: Flexibility, agility, and versatility are the key to airpower.

Option 5

So where does that leave the aging F-15C/D fleet, the reason this is even a conversation? The aforementioned War on the Rocks article articulated four options and concludes that an optimal solution likely includes a mix of F-15EX and F-35A to replace the F-15C. However, viewing the problem through a different lens, I offer a fifth option for consideration. To reap a strategic return on investment, the best and most disruptive option is to replace the F-15C with a combination of repurposed F-15Es, upgraded F-16s, F-35As, and a homeland defense fighter derivative of the T-X platform — while simultaneously putting the F-15EX where it can better support the National Defense Strategy.

First, the Air Force should accelerate the next-generation trainer jet development to spin off a low-cost homeland defense fighter derivative and prioritize conversion to select F-15C/D Air National Guard units that primarily exist to protect the homeland. Concurrently, procure F-15EX as fast as possible for a two-move shuffle. As F-15EXs roll off the production line, send them to current F-15E units to leverage the multi-role two-crew manpower construct already in place. This capitalizes on the capabilities of the multi-role two-seat F-15EX and permits acceleration of concepts that contribute to the National Defense Strategy. As new F-15EXs arrive, current healthy F-15Es would be sent to replace the oldest F-15Cs. Stripped of features unnecessary for a pure air-to-air role, F-15Es would be a marked improvement over current F-15Cs. They would get a modern communication and navigation suite, an updated cockpit, better sensor integration, integrated Sniper pod, optional conformal fuel tanks, and a fully funded Eagle Passive Active Warning Survivability System that the current F-15C fleet lacks.

The estimated $3.4 billion saved by not funding this electronic warfare system in retiring F-15Cs could be put towards rapidly procuring the Advanced Missile and Bomb Ejection Rack (AMBER) rack system for air-to-air F-15Es and upgraded front cockpit displays. With no other changes, the AMBER rack would increase missile capacity to 14 missiles (see Figure 9). As not all counter-air missions require stealth, the AMBER rack also provides a valuable tool to increase the air-to-air magazine for F-35As that would replace another portion of the F-15C/D fleet. Finally, as F-35A production continues to replace F-16s as planned, a portion of these F-16s should be outfitted with AMBER racks and shifted to replace a final segment of F-15Cs. This move aligns with current Air National Guard efforts, as the Air Force is already upgrading a portion of its F-16 fleet with advanced radars to fill critical homeland defense shortfalls.

As a final nod to disruption, adaption, and strategic competition, the Air Force should seek alternatives that contribute to gaining and maintaining pockets of air superiority that do not involve fighter aircraft and that can be showcased to the competition — the much lauded multi-domain approach.

Looking Forward

Regardless of how the Pentagon arrived at this juncture, there is an important choice ahead. While Congress appears to be at least somewhat supportive of F-15EX procurement, the global environment demands we think in a new way. The F-15EX has all the potential to be the disruptive force in strategic competition that the Air Force sorely needs, albeit in a dramatically different fashion than anyone has been discussing.

The urgency in war is often lost during times of peace. In a world of long-term, ever-shifting competition with our adversaries watching, are they likely to take notice if we pursue more of the same following the same predicable routine? Or will something genuinely disruptive — a novel, adaptive re-envisioning of an important platform’s capabilities — give them pause?

Mike Benitez is a U.S. Air Force Weapons Systems Officer with 2,000+ hours in the F-15E Strike Eagle, a U.S. Air Force Weapons School graduate, former DARPA fellow, former Defense Legislative Fellow, and a Contributing Editor at War on the Rocks. The views expressed are those of the author and do not reflect the official policy or position of the Department of Defense or the Department of the Air Force.

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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by FICU » Mon Jun 03, 2019 7:40 am

Time to look at the Su-35! At least it's pretty. ;)
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by righthandman » Mon Jun 03, 2019 8:28 am

In my opinion the rational for picking an aircraft that patrols primarily sparsely settled expanse of countryside like Canada is: does it have one engine or two?

If you lose an engine in a single engine plane no matter how fantastically marvellous it is, you lose the plane and possibly the pilot. With two engines you fly home for repairs and a beer. End of story.
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by AuxBatOn » Mon Jun 03, 2019 6:40 pm

I have no issues flying a single engine fighter such as the F-35 and its modern engine in the North if it means I can have better odds of survivability in a combat setting.
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by frosti » Tue Jun 04, 2019 6:54 am

I'll post the same thing again since some didn't get it....
righthandman wrote:
Mon Jun 03, 2019 8:28 am
In my opinion the rational for picking an aircraft that patrols primarily sparsely settled expanse of countryside like Canada is: does it have one engine or two?

If you lose an engine in a single engine plane no matter how fantastically marvellous it is, you lose the plane and possibly the pilot. With two engines you fly home for repairs and a beer. End of story.
Oh christ, the single engine crap again. :roll: The amount of engines has never been a requirement, not now and not when the CF-18 was chosen.

Here are two engines saving you... https://theaviationist.com/2015/12/29/s ... m-the-sea/

Look, two engines saving you again. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r4yMVM2Vxas

Redundancy isn't always better, if the odds of one failing is X, your probability of one of the two increases with two engines. If the odds, as has become true with current designs, of failure being catastrophic rather than simple "flame out," this means that two engines can be (and right now truly are) less reliable than one when it comes to abandoning the aircraft. Pilots die because they attempt to recover with the extra good engine perhaps saving them. Of course it all depends on the actual circumstances and pilot skill/training. Modern engines are sufficiently reliable that this risk is completely mitigated.

The Danes did a study on single engine operation.

https://www.ft.dk/samling/20151/almdel/ ... /index.htm
NOTE 2: F-35 ABILITY TO OPERATE IN THE ARCTIC AND SINGLE-ENGINE

Purpose
This note explains the F-35's ability to operate in the Arctic, including from small airports, and the importance that the aircraft has only one engine.

...

The significance of a motor for the F-35's ability to operate in the Arctic
A modern fighter aircraft survivability depends on the interaction between many different sub-systems, including aircraft self-protection systems, design, design and redundancy of the electrical and hydraulic systems. The evaluation of the F-35's survivability in the Arctic mission scenario shows that it has better survival rate than the other two candidates [Super Hornet and Eurofighter], also despite the fact that the F-35 have only one engine. This is primarily due to the reliability of modern engines are so good that even with major damage can bring a fighter safe back to the landing.

It should also be noted that none of the 10 Danish F-16 accidents were caused by engine failure. The engine for the F-16 is designed in the 1970s, and it is expected that the new engines are equally reliable.
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schnitzel2k3
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by schnitzel2k3 » Tue Jun 04, 2019 7:39 am

But without that valued multi-pic, how will you get hired outside of the military? You might as well be flying a PC12....

😋😋😋😋😋😋😋😋😋😋😋😋😋😋🍺🇨🇦😊
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by Duke Point » Wed Jun 05, 2019 8:47 am

Fighter procurement in Canada is a political joke. Accept that it is the "Canadian way"...……..we haven't been serious about the subject since 1958. Why bother now.

There is no "dogfight" that will occur over high arctic Canadian airspace......that's delusional. The U.S. would never stand idly by, and the Russians or Chinese wouldn't ever risk it. With infrared imagery available from space (unless they have figured out how not to burn fuel) at a moments notice, fighter intercepts are a ridiculous, dangerous notion anyway.

So what do we do? We do what we've always done. Debate, dawdle, cancel orders, mull over new ones. Who cares anyway. The US wont allow any North American incursion, and the "enemy" wouldn't EVER seriously risk it.

If you need Arctic "presence" (for whatever reason)....reactivate the VooDoo's from all our museums and put a couple of new engines on em…. DONE. Everything else is a HUGE waste of tax dollars that ---- I and you ---- could spend elsewhere.
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by Heliian » Wed Jun 05, 2019 12:13 pm

Good point Duke.

With nuclear powered cruise missiles and space based weapons, what's the point of even having fighters in Canada?

The war mongers are leading us into buying this for profit. We can maintain sovereignty with what we have.

Who is this enemy anyways? China? Russia? The middle east?

Are we ever going to be dogfighting over red lake to stop the Chinese red army from taking over manitoba and nwo?

Even the Russians are still banging around in the bears, an armed king air could take those out.
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by C-GGGQ » Wed Jun 05, 2019 1:11 pm

King airs with the nuclear tipped Genie's lol now that's a thought
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by laserstrike » Wed Jun 05, 2019 8:29 pm

IMO were better off building a deep water port, or two, and increasing our Arctic fleet significantly. If we really want to protect the Northwest Passage and the Arctic.
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by BMLtech » Thu Jun 06, 2019 6:48 am

While there is no doubt that the hornets need to be replaced, if the government is serious about the arctic, they should be looking at some P8's and a few wedgetails to replace the Auroras as well as a deep water port. Better yet would be a made in canada solution like the BBD Global based surveillance platform similar to what the UK bought. Sentinel I think they call it. At least we could keep an eye on what's going on up there.
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by Duke Point » Thu Jun 06, 2019 12:34 pm

How about deploying about a few sophisticated, heat sensitive geostationary satellites with high resolution optical capability as well??? A computer algorithm could filter out fauna, and send out alerts on the rest.

Have a guy monitoring near a phone with a hotline to Ottawa. We don't need to send a fighter up to intercept, just a phone call to the "intruding state" from our Foreign Affairs Minister inquiring as to what their intentions are would be completely sufficient.

In this geo-economic / political landscape, the days of "activating interception fighters" to counter a "threat" are so passe.

As far as "contributing to an International effort" abroad. We aren't serious enough to commit to force that would "seriously make a difference". No one would notice if we didn't even show up.

DP.

…..continue the debate on which "shiny new jet" the Government should waste a spectacular amount of Taxpayer money on, that will only burden us all with decades of debt, and make ZERO difference to our national identity.
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by AuxBatOn » Thu Jun 06, 2019 4:45 pm

That’ll work well with cloud cover...

Sending physical assets to meet the foe says something about sovereignty. Satellites don’t.
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by goingnowherefast » Fri Jun 07, 2019 7:53 am

CS300...I mean A220-300 would make a decent made in Canada surveillance platform. Maybe add a few gas tanks while doing the other mods, and it can stay airborne for a long time.

Too late now, but could have disguised a good amount of subsidies for Bombardier. Same deal as the Boeing contracts with the US military.
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by frosti » Fri Jun 07, 2019 12:35 pm

Duke Point wrote:
Wed Jun 05, 2019 8:47 am
reactivate the VooDoo's from all our museums and put a couple of new engines on em…. DONE.

Everything else is a HUGE waste of tax dollars that ---- I and you ---- could spend elsewhere.
Pretty much the dumbest idea I've heard yet. Nice try though. :lol:

Our convoluted fighter procurement program is only a reflection of our vastly intelligent Canadian public, along with their ideas, to what our military needs. The government is in no hurry to replace the Hornets because Canadians as a whole, don't really care, about anything really, beyond their borders. Ask your average Canadian and their response will ultimately be "the US will protect us". While that may be true, the US will only defend their own interests, which includes Canadian resources. It will only take a US president to say enough is enough and give Canada an ultimatum to which we will bend over to like the cowards we are.
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Re: More grist for the F18 replacement mill..

Post by ehv8oar » Sat Jun 08, 2019 4:44 am

laserstrike wrote:
Wed Jun 05, 2019 8:29 pm
IMO were better off building a deep water port, or two, and increasing our Arctic fleet significantly. If we really want to protect the Northwest Passage and the Arctic.
Canada has to pull it's weight in terms of defence spending, its a reasonably rich country and should be spending at least 2% of GDP on defence like the U.S and UK. As part of NATO its important that we do so. This includes buying the right type of aircraft to play our part in defending NATO countries as a whole.

Probably the best way Canada can do this is to provide a strong deterent from any aggression into North American (Canadian) territory. There's noway that Canada can afford a big enough navy to protect its huge coastline so in my opinion more investment in the air force is the way to go.
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