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(Hartford Courant)   Excessive rubbing is to blame for F-35 failures. F-35 vows to finally do something and join Match.com   (courant.com) divider line 111
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1771 clicks; posted to Business » on 14 Jul 2014 at 12:37 PM (9 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2014-07-14 09:22:55 AM
Another F-35 thread dominated by fools who don't understand that missiles have improved a bit since the Vietnam War, fighter aircraft never go into combat "slick" (so an agile F-16 is less maneuverable than a bloated F-35 when external fuel and munitions are strapped on), the things that make the F-35 incredibly expensive (software, sensors, and networking) have nothing to do with the fact they sold it to three branches, and if you upgraded the Super Bug with all if these platforms it would cost as much or more thus negating the savings of a legacy "proven" platform.

We should also extend a welcome the MOAR RAPTOR crowd.
 
2014-07-14 10:00:51 AM
Looks like this thread has already been shot down
 
2014-07-14 10:28:13 AM

b2theory: Another F-35 thread dominated by fools who don't understand


Um.. weren't you the only person to have posted when you typed this?
 
2014-07-14 10:34:18 AM

Relatively Obscure: b2theory: Another F-35 thread dominated by fools who don't understand

Um.. weren't you the only person to have posted when you typed this?


Predictions necessitate initial conditions.
 
2014-07-14 12:13:44 PM

b2theory: We should also extend a welcome the MOAR RAPTOR crowd.


OK, serious question since you seem to know a bit about this.  How do the problems with program stack up against the production delays and cost over runs of previous aircraft?  I have no doubt we need a new 5th Generation general purpose fighter, I am curious to know if the program is just horribly managed and/or corrupt.

/Yes, I could Google this, but then I would't have to...you know, Google it.
 
2014-07-14 12:39:12 PM

MaudlinMutantMollusk: Looks like this thread has already been shot down


Must not have been raining at 9:22.
 
2014-07-14 12:42:50 PM

Relatively Obscure: b2theory: Another F-35 thread dominated by fools who don't understand

Um.. weren't you the only person to have posted when you typed this?


LOL BURN SCORCH
 
2014-07-14 12:48:04 PM

Ennuipoet: I have no doubt we need a new 5th Generation general purpose fighter


Why?

What adversary are we keeping ahead of that the existing aircraft couldn't handle? Mainly cause they already were>>>>
 
2014-07-14 12:49:37 PM

Ennuipoet: b2theory: We should also extend a welcome the MOAR RAPTOR crowd.

OK, serious question since you seem to know a bit about this.  How do the problems with program stack up against the production delays and cost over runs of previous aircraft?  I have no doubt we need a new 5th Generation general purpose fighter, I am curious to know if the program is just horribly managed and/or corrupt.

/Yes, I could Google this, but then I would't have to...you know, Google it.


It's difficult to compare. When ever you do something that's never really been done before it's always a complete disaster. This is usually because you have program managers that try to apply determinism to a science project. So it is more apt to compare parts of the F-35 to say the V-22.

The truly new parts of this aircraft are the DAS, Vertical Lift system, porting the stealth features to carrier operations. All of those haven't gone according to plan.

The overall problem is that each new platform is getting more complex. The standard aero design processes are failing as complexity(particularly software complexity increases).
 
2014-07-14 12:50:06 PM
Against which threat are we using this?
 
2014-07-14 12:52:11 PM

foo monkey: Against which threat are we using this?


Defense contractors becoming less wealthy.
 
2014-07-14 12:56:51 PM

xaks: Ennuipoet: I have no doubt we need a new 5th Generation general purpose fighter

Why?

What adversary are we keeping ahead of that the existing aircraft couldn't handle? Mainly cause they already were>>>>


Because The Future.  China is developing 5th Gen aircraft, Russia has one.  Are they combat ready?  No. But they are working.

That being said, I am not at all certain the program isn't being horribly managed and the taxpayer isn't being screwed.  But I DO remember the troubles the B1 went through in planning and production, people said it would never work.  It's been a stable (if small) part of the fleet for 25 years.  The only reason we didn't hear about problems for the B2 is the details were classified during production, but I am willing to wager safe money there were plenty.
 
2014-07-14 01:12:45 PM

Ennuipoet: Because The Future.  China is developing 5th Gen aircraft, Russia has one.  Are they combat ready?  No. But they are working.



So?

The problem I see here is simple. The only folks we can't handle with existing aircraft or otherwise already existing forces are China, Russia, and the EU. They're also building similar tech level fighters.

And, I hate to break it to you, but if we get the point of *launching military operations against any of these foes, we're farked.*

It isn't the existence or not of an F-35 level fighter craft which would save us or doom us. If we start a shooting war with any of those three, we'll have more problems than a fleet of said fighter aircraft could ever help with.

The amount of shiat that would have to hit the fan for us to be sending our pilots into the airspace of one of these entities with permission to live fire is...well, off the charts, really. Or worse yet, for one of them to invade us?

Can you imagine the shiatstorm if China starting making strafing runs across silicon valley? I mean, besides the fact that Dick Cheney just had an orgasm via the NSA by my typing this...
 
2014-07-14 01:20:49 PM

b2theory: Another F-35 thread dominated by fools who don't understand that missiles have improved a bit since the Vietnam War, fighter aircraft never go into combat "slick" (so an agile F-16 is less maneuverable than a bloated F-35 when external fuel and munitions are strapped on), the things that make the F-35 incredibly expensive (software, sensors, and networking) have nothing to do with the fact they sold it to three branches, and if you upgraded the Super Bug with all if these platforms it would cost as much or more thus negating the savings of a legacy "proven" platform.

We should also extend a welcome the MOAR RAPTOR crowd.


www.rense.com



I've read from several different sources (too lazy do dig up and link, so dismiss me if you feel you have to) that we would have been significant better off in performance, time, and especially cost if we had developed three different aircraft instead of three variants of one.

At VERY LEAST the responsible thing to do would have been to develop a VTOL fighter for the Marines as an entirely separate project. The design needs for a VTOL is a heck of a lot different than for other aircraft. Trying to hack a conventional fighter to do VTOL was just begging for trouble, and its a damn impressive accomplishment of our engineers to get this cruel design of a aircraft to work at all, no matter how overpriced or poorly performing it may be.

As for the F-35A (air force and export version) and F-35C (Navy carrier version,) if we just absolutely HAD to share a design, we should have planned, built and fully tested the F-35A first while keeping in mind the requirements of a possible carrier version later.  We should have designed a modified C version ONLY AFTER the bugs were worked out of the A and the Air Force and our allies had enough time to fly and maintain them to know they worked well.

It might have taken significantly longer (well, maybe-- the approach we actually took with the F-35 sure has endless delays) but we would have ended up with better planes for less money. And if the F-35C follow on just didn't work out at least we and our allies would have had a good, reliable, relatively inexpensive plane in the F-35A.   Even if we had to go back to the blackboard to design a new Navy carrier fighter we would have still been better off.

And it's not like we're under a tight deadline or anything.  While the Harrier jump jet kinda sorta needs to be retired sooner rather than later, our fleets of F-15, F-16 and F/A-18 fighters can still kick the asses of anything else in the world (especially with our pilot's excellent training and extensive time in the air.)
 
2014-07-14 01:24:20 PM

Ennuipoet: I am curious to know if the program is just horribly managed and/or corrupt.


Yes.
 
2014-07-14 01:28:37 PM

Relatively Obscure: b2theory: Another F-35 thread dominated by fools who don't understand

Um.. weren't you the only person to have posted when you typed this?


Well, him and his ego.
 
2014-07-14 01:35:01 PM

Ennuipoet: xaks: Ennuipoet: I have no doubt we need a new 5th Generation general purpose fighter

Why?

What adversary are we keeping ahead of that the existing aircraft couldn't handle? Mainly cause they already were>>>>

Because The Future.  China is developing 5th Gen aircraft, Russia has one.  Are they combat ready?  No. But they are working.



Last I read about China's so-called combat stealth aircraft, it was a complete joke.  No one wants to buy it and be the Beta Tester for it.

Seriously, people with the "ZOMG CHINA...RUSSIA" kill me.  We endured that in the 80s with the Soviets.  People clamored for increased military spending because "they" were going to beat us.  Long story short, the Soviets would have been fortunate if 20% of anything worked.  The Navy alone was poorly trained, did not have any form of shipboard damage control, lacked supply parts, and was nowhere near as agile and adaptive as that of the US.

The F35 is corporate welfare.
 
2014-07-14 01:42:33 PM

Ennuipoet: But I DO remember the troubles the B1 went through in planning and production, people said it would never work.  It's been a stable (if small) part of the fleet for 25 years.


Well, one benefit of the B1 project was the forced adoption of GML, the grandfather of HTML.
 
2014-07-14 01:43:34 PM

Riche: I've read from several different sources (too lazy do dig up and link, so dismiss me if you feel you have to) that we would have been significant better off in performance, time, and especially cost if we had developed three different aircraft instead of three variants of one.



This is 100% correct.  There was this nonsense idea that somehow we were going to develop one basic airplane into three different types in order to share designs and parts, and the compromises from the STOVL version has entirely farked the other two versions.  The need to fit a giant vertical lift fan into the fuselage of the B version has made the design of the A and C versions compromised from things that they don't need.

It would not have been a terrible change to take the Air Force A version and make changes to adapt it for Naval service on aircraft carriers (bigger wings that can fold, strengthen undercarriage for landing, add a tail hook, etc.) but I am still surprised that the Navy has accepted a single engine fighter.  Their doctrine has been two engines for over water service.
 
2014-07-14 01:44:16 PM
c1.staticflickr.com

I want this one.
 
2014-07-14 01:45:18 PM
A stealthy fighter and excessive rubbing?

img.photobucket.com

Nah, too easy.
 
2014-07-14 01:52:55 PM

Gary-L: The F35 is corporate welfare.


I am not saying it isn't.  I am saying that money spent developing a next generation fighter is not necessarily a waste.  A military that doesn't innovate and keep ahead of not just current threats but potential threats will lose.  This was true when one guy figured out that tying his rock to a stick killed more dudes than just a rock, and it's true now.  Just because China can't field a 5th Gen aircraft now doesn't mean they can in five or ten years.

Is the F35 wasting money?  I'm sure it is, and the management of the program needs to be held accountable.  Should we scrap it and start over?  I don't know.
 
2014-07-14 02:07:33 PM

b2theory: It's difficult to compare. When ever you do something that's never really been done before it's always a complete disaster. This is usually because you have program managers that try to apply determinism to a science project. So it is more apt to compare parts of the F-35 to say the V-22.

The truly new parts of this aircraft are the DAS, Vertical Lift system, porting the stealth features to carrier operations. All of those haven't gone according to plan.

The overall problem is that each new platform is getting more complex. The standard aero design processes are failing as complexity(particularly software complexity increases).


No. No it's not always a complete disaster. This program is a complete disaster. Lets take nuclear powered ships and boats. The Nautilus was a complete success, The Seawolf was initially a bad design mainly because liquid metal reactors don't do well, land or sea (Other nations tried them and also had problems with them). The Skates worked just fine. The Tullibee worked just fine. The Permits worked just fine (with the one exception of a poorly chosen weld type that doomed the Thresher, hence SUBSAFE). The Skipjacks worked just fine with the exception of one loss the cause of which is uncertain but it was most likely either a weapons failure or a battery explosion, again non-nuclear. I could go on but from that point on there were no major mechanical or design issues.

The same goes for nuclear powered ships.

Do you know why? Strict quality controls from bow to screw, and I do mean strict, starting at where the parts were manufactured, through construction and during repairs. Strict attention to detail in the design phase kept problems from arising in the first place.

You can't tell me that the SSN 21 class or the Virginia Class is less complex that an F-35. It's a design problem. It's the Seawolf of airplanes. They fixed that by getting rid of the liquid metal reactor once it became obvious that it was more trouble than it was worth.

Now we are so invested in the F-35 that it would piss off the taxpayers even more if we scrapped it and went another direction so that's why we keep flailing at it but make no mistake about it, the F-35 is a complete disaster because of a hide bound mindset that started with SecDef MacNamara that was never reviewed on a regular basis to see if it still applied to modern conditions (multiple services, multiple missions, one airplane for all).
 
2014-07-14 02:24:44 PM

b2theory: The truly new parts of this aircraft are the DAS, Vertical Lift system, porting the stealth features to carrier operations. All of those haven't gone according to plan.


but you just said:

b2theory: the things that make the F-35 incredibly expensive (software, sensors, and networking) have nothing to do with the fact they sold it to three branches

mrmopar5287: but I am still surprised that the Navy has accepted a single engine fighter.  Their doctrine has been two engines for over water service.


considering the air force decided to go with a two engine strategic tanker, there's enough retard floating around the pentagon to share
 
2014-07-14 02:27:57 PM

foo monkey: Against which threat are we using this?




Against the attack drones everyone is busy building.
 
2014-07-14 02:30:09 PM

Ennuipoet: Gary-L: The F35 is corporate welfare. I am not saying it isn't.  I am saying that money spent developing a next generation fighter is not necessarily a waste.  A military that doesn't innovate and keep ahead of not just current threats but potential threats will lose.  This was true when one guy figured out that tying his rock to a stick killed more dudes than just a rock, and it's true now.  Just because China can't field a 5th Gen aircraft now doesn't mean they can in five or ten years. Is the F35 wasting money?  I'm sure it is, and the management of the program needs to be held accountable.  Should we scrap it and start over?  I don't know.


$1 trillion, that's a lot of cabbage.
 
2014-07-14 02:31:37 PM

Riche: b2theory: Another F-35 thread dominated by fools who don't understand that missiles have improved a bit since the Vietnam War, fighter aircraft never go into combat "slick" (so an agile F-16 is less maneuverable than a bloated F-35 when external fuel and munitions are strapped on), the things that make the F-35 incredibly expensive (software, sensors, and networking) have nothing to do with the fact they sold it to three branches, and if you upgraded the Super Bug with all if these platforms it would cost as much or more thus negating the savings of a legacy "proven" platform.

We should also extend a welcome the MOAR RAPTOR crowd.





I've read from several different sources (too lazy do dig up and link, so dismiss me if you feel you have to) that we would have been significant better off in performance, time, and especially cost if we had developed three different aircraft instead of three variants of one.

At VERY LEAST the responsible thing to do would have been to develop a VTOL fighter for the Marines as an entirely separate project. The design needs for a VTOL is a heck of a lot different than for other aircraft. Trying to hack a conventional fighter to do VTOL was just begging for trouble, and its a damn impressive accomplishment of our engineers to get this cruel design of a aircraft to work at all, no matter how overpriced or poorly performing it may be.

As for the F-35A (air force and export version) and F-35C (Navy carrier version,) if we just absolutely HAD to share a design, we should have planned, built and fully tested the F-35A first while keeping in mind the requirements of a possible carrier version later.  We should have designed a modified C version ONLY AFTER the bugs were worked out of the A and the Air Force and our allies had enough time to fly and maintain them to know they worked well.

It might have taken significantly longer (well, maybe-- the approach we actually took with the F-35 sure has endless delays) but we would have ended up with better planes for less money. And if the F-35C follow on just didn't work out at least we and our allies would have had a good, reliable, relatively inexpensive plane in the F-35A.   Even if we had to go back to the blackboard to design a new Navy carrier fighter we would have still been better off.

And it's not like we're under a tight deadline or anything.  While the Harrier jump jet kinda sorta needs to be retired sooner rather than later, our fleets of F-15, F-16 and F/A-18 fighters can still kick the asses of anything else in the world (especially with our pilot's excellent training and extensive time in the air.)


There are plenty of experts that have made a similar argument regarding the VSTOL platform. While I certainly respect them, I don't get them.

I don't really see how the A-model would have been designed differently. They aren't the same airframe. It's not like the A-Model is just a B-Model minus the lift fan. It looks much like a single engine Raptor.

The F-35B is also driven by international partners that have "carriers" that lack catapults and arresting gear.

Unfortunately, there is a deadline of sorts. Fighters have only a certain useful lifetime. This isn't driven by how effective they are it's purely the number of flight hours. The newest F-15s are over ten years old. The oldest F-15s and F-16s will be leaving service before the F-35 arrives.

The biggest complaints have been cost and performance. Unlike previous platforms, the F-35 has to carry everything internally. This makes the base airframe heavier and bulkier. As performance specifications have been released the air-air fan boys have compared the numbers to previous generations and it looks like we're taking a giant step backwards. The reality is that the comparison is being made between an aircraft that is closer to its actual combat configuration than the F-16 which is going to have 10,000 pounds of equipment bolted onto its wings.

The cost issue has largely been one of ignorance. I keep reading industry agi-prop that compares the F-35 LRIP cost to fighters that are ar FRP. It hasn't been uncommon for people to say: "The F-35 was supposed to save us so much money and now it's costing us more than the F-22...... Holy crap this thing is a boondoggle!" Or my favorite: "Why are we spending $200M on this piece of crap when we can get an F-18 for $60M?"

It doesn't matter that the A-model plane, even with cost over runs, is looking like it's going to be ~$90M.

I also people look at the F-35 and wonder where the thrust vectoring is. There is still a notion that dog fights will always be with us and we don't want to repeat the problems of the F-4. Yet, air combat in the past 30 years of air combat there have only been a couple gun kills and HOB missiles have made maneuvering pretty useless.
 
2014-07-14 02:34:00 PM

sprawl15: considering the air force decided to go with a two engine strategic tanker, there's enough retard floating around the pentagon to share


I had assumed that the reliability of modern turbofan engines was so advanced that the US Navy begrudgingly looked at the number of incidents and accepted it with some pressure.

Same for the Air Force and the tankers: millions of hours of turbofan operation to draw experience from and they just said the risk was acceptable.
 
2014-07-14 02:36:54 PM

b2theory: Unfortunately, there is a deadline of sorts. Fighters have only a certain useful lifetime. This isn't driven by how effective they are it's purely the number of flight hours. The newest F-15s are over ten years old. The oldest F-15s and F-16s will be leaving service before the F-35 arrives.


Both the F-15 and F-16 are still in production.  We could easily buy more of them to replace aging models that are retired.
 
2014-07-14 02:41:12 PM

Radioactive Ass: b2theory: It's difficult to compare. When ever you do something that's never really been done before it's always a complete disaster. This is usually because you have program managers that try to apply determinism to a science project. So it is more apt to compare parts of the F-35 to say the V-22.

The truly new parts of this aircraft are the DAS, Vertical Lift system, porting the stealth features to carrier operations. All of those haven't gone according to plan.

The overall problem is that each new platform is getting more complex. The standard aero design processes are failing as complexity(particularly software complexity increases).

No. No it's not always a complete disaster. This program is a complete disaster. Lets take nuclear powered ships and boats. The Nautilus was a complete success, The Seawolf was initially a bad design mainly because liquid metal reactors don't do well, land or sea (Other nations tried them and also had problems with them). The Skates worked just fine. The Tullibee worked just fine. The Permits worked just fine (with the one exception of a poorly chosen weld type that doomed the Thresher, hence SUBSAFE). The Skipjacks worked just fine with the exception of one loss the cause of which is uncertain but it was most likely either a weapons failure or a battery explosion, again non-nuclear. I could go on but from that point on there were no major mechanical or design issues.

The same goes for nuclear powered ships.

Do you know why? Strict quality controls from bow to screw, and I do mean strict, starting at where the parts were manufactured, through construction and during repairs. Strict attention to detail in the design phase kept problems from arising in the first place.

You can't tell me that the SSN 21 class or the Virginia Class is less complex that an F-35. It's a design problem. It's the Seawolf of airplanes. They fixed that by getting rid of the liquid metal reactor once it became obvious that it was more trouble than it was worth.

Now we are so invested in the F-35 that it would piss off the taxpayers even more if we scrapped it and went another direction so that's why we keep flailing at it but make no mistake about it, the F-35 is a complete disaster because of a hide bound mindset that started with SecDef MacNamara that was never reviewed on a regular basis to see if it still applied to modern conditions (multiple services, multiple missions, one airplane for all).


The Seawolf and Virgina class subs both suffer from the same cost-complexity problems that the F-35 is struggling with. The existence of the Virginia class is evidence if the problem.

The problem is that in other industries (automotive and semiconductor in particular) the complexity if the devices and systems have gone through the roof. Yet, the cost of the finished products has stayed the same or gone down.

Aero/Mil/Space projects have seen incremental complexity increases actually accelerate cost. The validation and certification processes, primarily software, have created a development environment that is unique and almost unmanageable.
 
2014-07-14 02:42:44 PM

mrmopar5287: b2theory: Unfortunately, there is a deadline of sorts. Fighters have only a certain useful lifetime. This isn't driven by how effective they are it's purely the number of flight hours. The newest F-15s are over ten years old. The oldest F-15s and F-16s will be leaving service before the F-35 arrives.

Both the F-15 and F-16 are still in production.  We could easily buy more of them to replace aging models that are retired.


Agreed.
 
2014-07-14 02:43:27 PM

b2theory: Another F-35 thread dominated by fools who don't understand that missiles have improved a bit since the Vietnam War, fighter aircraft never go into combat "slick" (so an agile F-16 is less maneuverable than a bloated F-35 when external fuel and munitions are strapped on), the things that make the F-35 incredibly expensive (software, sensors, and networking) have nothing to do with the fact they sold it to three branches, and if you upgraded the Super Bug with all if these platforms it would cost as much or more thus negating the savings of a legacy "proven" platform.

We should also extend a welcome the MOAR RAPTOR WARTHOG crowd.


/FTFY
 
2014-07-14 02:46:53 PM

Im_Gumby: b2theory: Another F-35 thread dominated by fools who don't understand that missiles have improved a bit since the Vietnam War, fighter aircraft never go into combat "slick" (so an agile F-16 is less maneuverable than a bloated F-35 when external fuel and munitions are strapped on), the things that make the F-35 incredibly expensive (software, sensors, and networking) have nothing to do with the fact they sold it to three branches, and if you upgraded the Super Bug with all if these platforms it would cost as much or more thus negating the savings of a legacy "proven" platform.

We should also extend a welcome the MOAR RAPTOR WARTHOG crowd.

/FTFY


Heh, forgot about that. I can't read David Axe anymore as a result.
 
2014-07-14 02:47:03 PM

mrmopar5287: but I am still surprised that the Navy has accepted a single engine fighter.  Their doctrine has been two engines for over water service.


I was a little surprised at that too, but after thinking about it I'm guessing:

1.  Decades of additional experience has probably shown that surviveability (due to battle damage or malfunction) of a two engine fighter wouldn't be significantly better than that of a one engine fighter-- especially since both engines of a two engine fighter pretty much have to be right next to each other, so whatever poked a hole in one engine would have almost certainly poked a hole in the other, or if one engine blew up it would likely take the other one with it.

2.  One engine fighters are probably significantly lighter, meaning that crashes due to a broken tailhook, trap malfunction, bad takeoff run, or landing gear collapse are significantly less likely.

3. One engine fighters are probably a lot simpler and easier to work on, giving less opportunity for an exhausted ground crew (do they call those teams that on a carrier?) making some kind of BADmistake during a long combat operation.

4.  One engine fighters are probably more fuel efficient, giving you more combat radius without as much of that potentially dangerous in air refueling.

5.  (Most Important) the influential Admiral who had a hard-on for two engine fighters has probably retired by now.

** Note the "Probably" in each of my reasons-- they're all speculation on my part. **
 
2014-07-14 02:48:42 PM

b2theory: There are plenty of experts that have made a similar argument regarding the VSTOL platform. While I certainly respect them, I don't get them.

I don't really see how the A-model would have been designed differently. They aren't the same airframe. It's not like the A-Model is just a B-Model minus the lift fan. It looks much like a single engine Raptor.

The F-35B is also driven by international partners that have "carriers" that lack catapults and arresting gear.

Unfortunately, there is a deadline of sorts. Fighters have only a certain useful lifetime. This isn't driven by how effective they are it's purely the number of flight hours. The newest F-15s are over ten years old. The oldest F-15s and F-16s will be leaving service before the F-35 arrives.

The biggest complaints have been cost and performance. Unlike previous platforms, the F-35 has to carry everything internally. This makes the base airframe heavier and bulkier. As performance specifications have been released the air-air fan boys have compared the numbers to previous generations and it looks like we're taking a giant step backwards. The reality is that the comparison is being made between an aircraft that is closer to its actual combat configuration than the F-16 which is going to have 10,000 pounds of equipment bolted onto its wings.

The cost issue has largely been one of ignorance. I keep reading industry agi-prop that compares the F-35 LRIP cost to fighters that are ar FRP. It hasn't been uncommon for people to say: "The F-35 was supposed to save us so much money and now it's costing us more than the F-22...... Holy crap this thing is a boondoggle!" Or my favorite: "Why are we spending $200M on this piece of crap when we can get an F-18 for $60M?"

It doesn't matter that the A-model plane, even with cost over runs, is looking like it's going to be ~$90M.

I also people look at the F-35 and wonder where the thrust vectoring is. There is still a notion that dog fights will always be with us and we don ...


A lot of interesting points there.  Thank you.
 
2014-07-14 02:51:14 PM
I think, if you had to ask each taxpayer where on the doll the F35 touched you, the universal response would be pointing to the wallet...
 
2014-07-14 02:52:01 PM

mrmopar5287: Same for the Air Force and the tankers: millions of hours of turbofan operation to draw experience from and they just said the risk was acceptable.


the air force at least sort of has an excuse - commercial jets prefer two engines as the demands on the planes are drastically different, and the air force was unwilling to finance a new airframe that could support 3+ engines. there's all KINDS of issues sprouting from this, though, because of how different commercial requirements are from military requirements

but it is quite a bit worse than just self-reliability, because of how safety works when hauling planes across the oceans - on a -135, if an engine fails it's no big deal. on a -46, it puts them in an emergency situation based on the receivers they're hauling, not their own capabilities, because of how dicey refueling can be in such a case. sure, the -46 can fly, say, 330 minutes out from an airfield, but the ospreys behind it can't. so your mission planning is limited by the ospreys (while with a -135, it isn't). that has huge posturing effects when considering things like crossing the pacific without flying through the arctic circle
 
2014-07-14 02:54:50 PM

sprawl15: considering the air force decided to go with a two engine strategic tanker, there's enough retard floating around the pentagon to share


What's wrong with a two-engine tanker? Modern engines have enough power and reliability that most aircraft don't need more than two. The KC-46 is also going to come in under-budget.
 
2014-07-14 02:57:13 PM

b2theory: The Seawolf and Virgina class subs both suffer from the same cost-complexity problems that the F-35 is struggling with. The existence of the Virginia class is evidence if the problem.

The problem is that in other industries (automotive and semiconductor in particular) the complexity if the devices and systems have gone through the roof. Yet, the cost of the finished products has stayed the same or gone down.


The automotive and semiconductor industries also aren't constrained by political requirements.  How many different congressional districts are getting a piece of the F-35 action?  Far more than necessary, I'd bet (I seem to remember seeing a really big number on that once).  Car and computer manufacturers are free to plan production around saving costs and maximizing profits; but aerospace companies have to plan production around appeasing certain key votes in various congressional committees---even if that means increasing the complexity (and therefore exposure to potential errors) of the production process.
 
2014-07-14 03:03:34 PM

Riche: mrmopar5287: but I am still surprised that the Navy has accepted a single engine fighter.  Their doctrine has been two engines for over water service.

I was a little surprised at that too, but after thinking about it I'm guessing:


One more issue to add would be that it's only now that we are getting reliable, modern engines that can produce 40,000+ pounds of thrust.  With older designs the Navy had to have two engines if they wanted 30,000+ pounds of thrust because there wasn't any single engines that were making that much power.

F-14 needed thrust and there wasn't a single engine strong enough, so it takes two GE F110 engines to deliver what you need.
F-18 needed the same so it takes two GE F414 engines to deliver what you need.
 
2014-07-14 03:05:37 PM

b2theory: Unlike previous platforms, the F-35 has to carry everything internally.


Actually, the F-35 has several external hardpoints for use when stealth isn't a primary concern.
 
2014-07-14 03:06:02 PM

Tobin_Lam: What's wrong with a two-engine tanker?


see above. you would generally need 2-3 engines to fail on a -135 to have the same situation as 1 engine failing on a -46. even given a higher individual engine reliability, you're still looking at a much lower mission reliability

plus the -46's engines, while slightly newer than the CFM56s, aren't 'new' by any metric. we aren't comparing to the old e-model tf33's
 
2014-07-14 03:11:21 PM

Tobin_Lam: What's wrong with a two-engine tanker? Modern engines have enough power and reliability that most aircraft don't need more than two. The KC-46 is also going to come in under-budget.


As sprawl15 mentioned above, planning for worst-case failures.  It's one thing to say no problem if a tanker loses an engine for some reason and can easily make it to an airfield on one engine ETOPS operation.  But what happens if you are shutting down an engine in the middle of a mission, even if it is a simple ferry mission?  If you've got a small fleet of fighters or other equipment that is your charge to fuel them on a ferry over the Pacific, can one engine provide the performance you need to not only fly your own aircraft but to also deliver fuel to the fleet that is depending on you?  If not, at that point we are talking about the possibility of some aircraft being out of range of a diversion airfield.  Do you want to let fighter pilots eject into the ocean and ditch hundreds of millions of dollars in equipment?  On a 4 engine KC-135 tanker you can just cut an engine and it's no big deal.  Same on a 3 engine tanker (KC-10, or the L-1011 that was used by the RAF).
 
2014-07-14 03:13:21 PM

sprawl15: osprey


in hindsight, this is actually a really bad example to use as neither the -135, the -10, or the new -46 will be able to refuel the osprey
 
2014-07-14 03:15:48 PM

Tobin_Lam: b2theory: Unlike previous platforms, the F-35 has to carry everything internally.

Actually, the F-35 has several external hardpoints for use when stealth isn't a primary concern.


That wasn't an exclusive statement. It has to carry a useful amount of ordinance and fuel internally for first-day stealth operations. Yes, it can carry even more if you don't care about low observability.
 
2014-07-14 03:16:08 PM
I dunno, subby. There seem to be plenty of F-35s already on match. Most of those are bloated and have excessive rubbing too.

/of their thighs
 
2014-07-14 03:21:06 PM

sprawl15: Tobin_Lam: What's wrong with a two-engine tanker?

see above. you would generally need 2-3 engines to fail on a -135 to have the same situation as 1 engine failing on a -46. even given a higher individual engine reliability, you're still looking at a much lower mission reliability

plus the -46's engines, while slightly newer than the CFM56s, aren't 'new' by any metric. we aren't comparing to the old e-model tf33's


Isn't the standard procedure to land ASAP with an engine failure, regardless of the number of remaining engines? It seems to me that putting aircraft in the position where they absolutely can't be refueled if the tanker has to leave them is piss-poor planning.
 
2014-07-14 03:24:19 PM

HMS_Blinkin: b2theory: The Seawolf and Virgina class subs both suffer from the same cost-complexity problems that the F-35 is struggling with. The existence of the Virginia class is evidence if the problem.

The problem is that in other industries (automotive and semiconductor in particular) the complexity if the devices and systems have gone through the roof. Yet, the cost of the finished products has stayed the same or gone down.

The automotive and semiconductor industries also aren't constrained by political requirements.  How many different congressional districts are getting a piece of the F-35 action?  Far more than necessary, I'd bet (I seem to remember seeing a really big number on that once).  Car and computer manufacturers are free to plan production around saving costs and maximizing profits; but aerospace companies have to plan production around appeasing certain key votes in various congressional committees---even if that means increasing the complexity (and therefore exposure to potential errors) of the production process.


The politics simply means that things are more expensive than they need to be. It explain why each additional generation is getting more expensive.

Neither semiconductor nor automotive do anything even approaching the type of development process. That isn't to say that Aero/Mil is better, just way more expensive per incremental complexity. DARPA has highlighted this as a major roadblock for future hardware. So they launched a program called META to try and extend semiconductor type abstraction to physical systems.

Actually, the F-35 did spread an unreasonably high development cost across so many airframes that it actually seems more sane than it really is. The F-35 is way more complicated than the F-22. If it were a single platform for the Air Force that would have been more obvious in the price.
 
2014-07-14 03:24:35 PM

b2theory: Tobin_Lam: b2theory: Unlike previous platforms, the F-35 has to carry everything internally.

Actually, the F-35 has several external hardpoints for use when stealth isn't a primary concern.

That wasn't an exclusive statement. It has to carry a useful amount of ordinance and fuel internally for first-day stealth operations. Yes, it can carry even more if you don't care about low observability.


At no point in your post did you even imply that. You made a very clearly exclusive statement.
 
2014-07-14 03:30:50 PM

Tobin_Lam: Isn't the standard procedure to land ASAP with an engine failure, regardless of the number of remaining engines?


depends on the number of engines. -135's have lost engines on takeoff, then proceeded to fly across the pacific no big. on a -46, that would be a no go and the whole mission would be scrapped

Tobin_Lam: It seems to me that putting aircraft in the position where they absolutely can't be refueled if the tanker has to leave them is piss-poor planning.


it's more a consideration of "if all of a sudden the tanker fell out of the sky, how far can the ferried planes fly without refueling?" then you plan your mission such that there is never a place to land farther than that distance. but that whole imposition simply doesn't exist for four engine planes - you can fly direct to guam from california with a -135. you can't (safely) do it with a -46.

and there's generally voluntary etops like situations regardless of ferries with two engine planes anyway. that's a problem the australians ran into with their a-330 tanker: they cannot actually fly direct from (iirc) brisbane to perth because there's no place to land because of how barren the middle of the country is. they have to divert south and fly closer to the populated coast. the 767 has only been approved commercially for up to a 180 minute etops, iirc, and that's based on proven performance. the -46 will have a totally different configuration than extant 767s, so even 180 minutes is pushing it.
 
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