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Old 09-03-2014, 08:08 AM   #1076
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Old 09-03-2014, 08:49 AM   #1077
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Old 09-03-2014, 05:26 PM   #1078
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JD, heard anything through the grapevine about the Cyclone?
You mean other than being a complete fuckup by both Procurement and Sikorsky? The OTU for the Sea King was supposed to be shut down this year with new guys starting the Cyclone OTU next year to be operational by 2016. That's all gone out the window. It's now 6+ years late and not even being built to the spec the procurement outlined. Sikorsky has said they cannot build what was asked for. It's a piece of garbage that Canada should resign from ordering, get a full refund for, and spend it on an immediately available replacement.

We're supposed to get an update on what's going on with Canada's next gen fighter this month but I'm not holding my breath, they said the same thing back in spring.

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Old 09-06-2014, 03:17 PM   #1079
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(Reuters) - Canada is likely to choose between two major U.S. firms when it buys a new fleet of jet fighters, excluding two European competitors, according to a source with direct knowledge of the matter.

The source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said Lockheed Martin Corp's F-35 stealth fighter and Boeing Co's F-18 E/F Super Hornet were deemed more suitable for the variety of tasks the military has laid out.

The source said that while the F-35 had scored well on the various tests laid out by the military, the Super Hornet was almost as capable and had the advantage of being cheaper.

If so, the choice would mean the widely expected elimination of Dassault Aviation SA's Rafale and the Eurofighter Typhoon, jointly made by BAE Systems PLC, Finmeccanica SpA and Airbus Group NV.

The fighter selection has proven enormously problematic for Canada's Conservative government, which in 2012 scrapped a sole-sourced plan to buy 65 F-35s for C$9 billion ($8.3 billion) after a parliamentary watchdog savaged the decision.

Ottawa then set up a special secretariat to compare the merits of the four contenders. It is deciding whether to hold a competition or go ahead with the initial plan to buy F-35s, which could prompt accusations that it was acting in bad faith.

The secretariat was not asked to make a recommendation about which jet to buy, but the new revelations will likely bolster the increasing conviction in Ottawa and Washington that the F-35 remains the front runner.

Richard Aboulafia, analyst with Virginia-based Teal Group, said further delays in a Canadian decision could push any possible order beyond the order window that Boeing would need to maintain the Super Hornet line, now slated to close in 2017.

"Even if you choose not to decide, you have still made a choice,” Aboulafia said.

Polls show the Conservatives of Prime Minister Stephen Harper could lose the next federal election, which is set for October 2015.

A spokeswoman for Public Works Minister Diane Finley, who is responsible for military procurement, said ministers were reviewing a number of reports, including information on fighter capabilities, industrial benefits, costs and other factors, and all options remained open until a decision was made.

"Cabinet has made no such decision, nor has Cabinet determined when it will make a decision," said Jason MacDonald, chief spokesman for the prime minister.

The $400 billion F-35 program, the largest in Pentagon history, is already late and well over budget. U.S. officials said on Wednesday they were nearing a fix for the engine that powers the F-35.

The failure of Pratt & Whitney's F135 engine grounded the entire F-35 fleet for several weeks this summer. Flights have resumed but with certain restrictions on speed and other maneuvers.

A potential attraction for Canada is that Lockheed's bid offers Canadian industry some $11 billion in work building airplane components.

Three other sources familiar with the deliberations said Ottawa had been poised last month to announce it would buy the F-35s. That plan changed when Harper – concerned about the political fallout - suggested that Canada could wait since it did not need to replace its existing CF-18 jets until 2020.

One of the three sources, who was not authorized to speak publicly, said Harper could still announce in coming weeks that Canada would buy the F-35 and skip a new competition, but that "ultimately, it will be a political decision."

Boeing's bid would likely include more traditional offset agreements, giving contracts to Canadian firms. Dassault says it is prepared eventually to build the Rafale in Canada.

Analysts and opposition critics suspect the government will delay the decision until after the next election. If Canada puts off buying new planes for too long, it would likely have to upgrade its current aging CF-18s, which date back to 1982, at a cost that some analysts estimate could top $1 billion.

Lockheed said on Thursday it was continuing to support the Canadian government and the special secretariat as Ottawa weighed its options. A Boeing spokesman said the company continued to support the Canadian process.

Harper is in Wales for a NATO summit, where he is under pressure to boost Canada's defense spending in the face of instability in Ukraine and the Middle East.
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Old 09-06-2014, 03:46 PM   #1080
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fuck these hippies that want to scrap military spending. If shit goes down, i want our men and women in the best/safest, to protect our ungrateful canadian asses. I dont want them in some half ass upgrade that is gonna get them killed because they are missing features that a quality upgrade would of given them, Im down for paying more taxes
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Old 09-06-2014, 04:02 PM   #1081
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fuck these hippies that want to scrap military spending. If shit goes down, i want our men and women in the best/safest, to protect our ungrateful canadian asses. I dont want them in some half ass upgrade that is gonna get them killed because they are missing features that a quality upgrade would of given them, Im down for paying more taxes
The Foxtrot Alpha blog took an indepth look into the F35 vs F18 Super Hornet for the RCAF.

The Right Fighter For Canada Is The Super Hornet, Not The F-35

To be honest, I'm rather inclined to agree with it. Bang for buck, the Super Hornet is a far better aircraft for our air force and considering we're able to buy two F18's for the price of a single F35 (especially with the incentives Boeing is apparently offering to the government), it just seems the logical choice. Our air force is primarily here to patrol our own borders, not as an advanced attack force on a foreign country. And assuming we go to war across the ocean, the USAF will be there as well. Will the dozen or so F35's we'd be able to spare really be able to make a difference alongside their much larger force?

Not to mention things like the longer distance capability, buddy mid-air refuelling, dual engines, existing legacy training, etc., etc. that all make the Super Hornet a far more attractive prospect.
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Old 09-06-2014, 04:07 PM   #1082
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The Foxtrot Alpha blog took an indepth look into the F35 vs F18 Super Hornet for the RCAF.

The Right Fighter For Canada Is The Super Hornet, Not The F-35

To be honest, I'm rather inclined to agree with it. Bang for buck, the Super Hornet is a far better aircraft for our air force and considering we're able to buy F18's for the price of a single F35 (especially with the incentives Boeing is apparently offering to the government), it just seems the logical choice. Our air force is primarily here to patrol our own borders, not as an advanced attack force on a foreign country. And assuming we go to war across the ocean, the USAF will be there as well. Will the dozen or so F35's we'd be able to spare really be able to make a difference alongside their much larger force?

Not to mention things like the longer distance capability, buddy mid-air refuelling, dual engines, existing legacy training, etc., etc. that all make the Super Hornet a far more attractive prospect.
I am down for that, I dont care one way or another. I just want our personel to have proper aircraft, whether it be f35 or f18SH. I think the public shouldnt have a say. Only people should have a say or vote are those who will be operating the aircraft.
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Old 09-07-2014, 09:23 AM   #1083
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+1 for the advanced super hornet.. i mean, wouldn't it make more sense to upgrade the equipment we have if it will stay relevant? rather than shell out for new hardware and new training?
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Old 09-07-2014, 01:22 PM   #1084
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imo the F-35 would be the ideal choice, but in terms of Canada we it is way more cost effective(you guys already know that) to choose F-18E/F+. The US needs the F-35 because during a military campaign against a state (Iran, N.Korea) they would need the stealth and what not but Canada would probably be in support of such a war and the F-18 does that fine.
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Old 09-07-2014, 01:55 PM   #1085
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+1 super hornet.


But tbh, I think the Gripen would be a pretty good alternative choice.
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Old 09-07-2014, 02:19 PM   #1086
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is there a set limit to how many flight hours an airframe can accumulate?
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Old 09-07-2014, 03:41 PM   #1087
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is there a set limit to how many flight hours an airframe can accumulate?
Yes. This is due to the lightweight materials such as aluminum and the composites used. For these materials fatigue is inherent and will also be increased by higher-load situations (such as take-off, landing and evasive maneuvering). Stresses will cause irreparable microscopic cracks over time leading to catastrophic failure. Basically the design brief will decide the lifespan of a particular airframe and engineers will select materials and calculate a a figure slightly longer than its intended use. Also, based upon flight data the lifespan of each individual airframe can be calculated somewhat accurately.

A fun fact: This extends to all lightweight/ composites. So all those pretty carbon-fibre lightweight cars we are now beginning to see, none of them will ever become functional/drivable classics as their materials degrade over time.



Also, because photo thread -- something I bumped into this morning:
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Old 09-07-2014, 04:34 PM   #1088
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Super Hornet all the way.
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Old 09-07-2014, 04:39 PM   #1089
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Yes. This is due to the lightweight materials such as aluminum and the composites used. For these materials fatigue is inherent and will also be increased by higher-load situations (such as take-off, landing and evasive maneuvering). Stresses will cause irreparable microscopic cracks over time leading to catastrophic failure. Basically the design brief will decide the lifespan of a particular airframe and engineers will select materials and calculate a a figure slightly longer than its intended use. Also, based upon flight data the lifespan of each individual airframe can be calculated somewhat accurately.

A fun fact: This extends to all lightweight/ composites. So all those pretty carbon-fibre lightweight cars we are now beginning to see, none of them will ever become functional/drivable classics as their materials degrade over time.
so what does this mean for the CF-18's that are still in operation? are they too old to upgrade yet again? or are we planning on getting brand new airframes?
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Old 09-07-2014, 05:40 PM   #1090
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So. Sexy.

My current favorite jet.
Best cockpit of any current fast jet IMO.
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Old 09-07-2014, 06:30 PM   #1091
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so what does this mean for the CF-18's that are still in operation? are they too old to upgrade yet again? or are we planning on getting brand new airframes?
I believe the current planes are due for a $20 million a pop upgrade (airframe and tech package), which is one of the reasons why they're looking at replacing them.
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Old 09-07-2014, 08:23 PM   #1092
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God I hope we get some Growlers if we go the super hornet route. If not, I'd like the Typhoon for single source fighter. Protecting Canadian airspace should come as priority in my opinion instead of selecting a ground pounder and then trying to have it be an air superiority fighter for Canada as a secondary role. (F35)
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Old 09-08-2014, 01:19 AM   #1093
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seems to be a lot of love on this page for the delta wings haha.
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Old 09-08-2014, 05:54 AM   #1094
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is there a set limit to how many flight hours an airframe can accumulate?
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so what does this mean for the CF-18's that are still in operation? are they too old to upgrade yet again? or are we planning on getting brand new airframes?
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I believe the current planes are due for a $20 million a pop upgrade (airframe and tech package), which is one of the reasons why they're looking at replacing them.
A good chunk of the birds are only designated as "ferry" planes. Meaning they can only withstand a very slight amount of G's or they go boom.

Our f18's suck
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Old 09-09-2014, 12:00 AM   #1095
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+1 for the advanced super hornet.. i mean, wouldn't it make more sense to upgrade the equipment we have if it will stay relevant? rather than shell out for new hardware and new training?
Any new aircraft the CF buys will require a completely new training system for both pilots and technicians, simulators, tools, etc. Everything from tow-bars to move the jets in and out of the hanger to constructing a completely new sim system with all the necessary hardware, software, programming, a training syllabus... absolutely everything. Buying a new jet is a logistical nightmare, but it needs to be done. There is ZERO point in trying to upgrade our current fleet again, they might as well just set money on fire. Even the Super Hornet, though still an F-18, has very little in common with the Legacy Hornets we are flying now.

The Advanced Super Hornet is an interesting mix between fourth and fifth gen fighters. It's essentially using one of the most proven airframes in service today and integrating the most modern and powerful avionics and weapons systems available - nicely developed by projects like the F117, B2, F22, and so on. It's biggest advantages for Canada are A) dual engine B) range. The standard Super Hornet (F-18E/F/G) has 33% more internal fuel capacity than our Legacy Hornets, and the conformal fuel tanks on the ASH are rumored to add an additional 130nm to it's range. Add to that a Super's ability to five-tank and still carry A/A ordinance, plus the next generation of engines improved fuel consumption - that's a long hang time on station for NORAD and NATO sovereignty missions which make up 95% of what we do in real world ops.

The advantages of the F35 are slowly eroding. Its cost has soared over original estimates and it's having a lot of growing pains, most notably its engine eating itself. I also can't imagine the sensitive skin of the F35 which gives it its stealth capability will work very well in harsh arctic conditions either. We'd have to build completely new hangers with strict climate controls in order to meet the needs of the aircraft. And that's not just at their home bases, that's at every FOL we have across the country otherwise there's no point in having a stealthy jet at all. Stealth is also a dying trend with detection technology advancing exponentially faster than you can develop a new airframe. It certainly has its place but it's really only for nations who intend on spending ka-billions trying to stay on top of it in order to keep a first-strike capability. That's not Canada, and will not be anytime in the foreseeable future. It's just not in our mission statement. For Canada we'd be better off spending less per airframe to get more, and get something that still has a very powerful radar, high-end E/W capability, and weapons to match. The ASH with Raytheon's top of the line AESA radar combined with smart weapons like GPS guided bombs and BVR missiles like the AMRAAM and Meteor that's in development - I think that's what Canada will end up going with.

Boeing sells the standard Super Hornet for $50-mil and the E/W Growlers for $68-mil. They're claiming the ASH additions could be added to either platform for only 10% more per unit rolling off the assembly line. This is a proven platform with the near bullet-proof F414-GE-400 engines that have been upgraded and improved over 10 years of flying and over $100-mil of R&D by GE and the US Navy. The F35A is projected to cost in excess of $120-mil per unit. I feel that a mixed fleet of Advanced Super's and Growlers will be cheaper initially (while giving us more aircraft), cheaper in long-term maintenance, far more flexible, an easier transition for both pilots* and ground crews, and have the added reliability of a proven twin engine aircraft. They will simply do the job better and with less headaches than the narrowly focused F35.



*They'll also give all the ACSO's we have sitting on their asses something to do - E/F models have either a second pilot or WSO (Weapons System Operator) in the backseat who operates all the E/W systems. All Growlers have a dedicated WSO in the backseat (no flight controls).
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Old 09-09-2014, 06:34 AM   #1096
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The Foxtrot Alpha blog took an indepth look into the F35 vs F18 Super Hornet for the RCAF.

The Right Fighter For Canada Is The Super Hornet, Not The F-35
Rogoway is a photographer come Gawker 'journalist' from the aerospace backwaters of Oregon. He talks about how the CF18 has to "lug" extra fuel tanks to increase range, then further down the page he marvels the Super Hornet being capable of carrying 5 across. He is an idiot with no consequential knowledge on the subject he covers. Also...60million for an ADV SH? He is on crack.


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To be honest, I'm rather inclined to agree with it. Bang for buck, the Super Hornet is a far better aircraft for our air force and considering we're able to buy two F18's for the price of a single F35
Australia paid A$2.9B in 2007 or US$2.4B for 24 aircraft (US$100M per copy). In today's dollars, it is US$115M a copy. The F-35 in today's dollars is US$98M minus the engine. The engine costs US$28M, for a total of US$126M for the whole package on aircraft that is still in low-rate production. Once production increases, the price will go down. It is forecast to be US$95M in 2018 dollars or US$87M a copy. Buying a Superhornet would be a step back from what we have now, its not that much better that the hornets we fly. The off the shelf Super Hornet has the same radar we have, same RWR, same dispenser, just slightly better jammer, inferior targeting pod and non-custom software. Is the money well invested for 2 more wing stations and possibly an AESA radar? Are those capabilities going to bring us to mid century?

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Our air force is primarily here to patrol our own borders, not as an advanced attack force on a foreign country.
I guess those operations in Libya and now eastern europe don't count.....

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Not to mention things like the longer distance capability, buddy mid-air refuelling, dual engines, existing legacy training, etc., etc. that all make the Super Hornet a far more attractive prospect.
And a far inferior aircraft for the future.

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Old 09-09-2014, 08:30 AM   #1097
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Australia paid A$2.9B in 2007 or US$2.4B for 24 aircraft (US$100M per copy).
They actually paid that much? That's crazy, and way off the numbers I've seen everywhere else. Or is that including the lifetime maintenance and upgrades? If that's the true flyaway cost per unit then yes the Super is not worth choosing over the F35A and my post is completely irrelevant.
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Old 09-09-2014, 08:49 AM   #1098
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Everything I've seen indicates between $66 and $70 million per plane for flyaway costs, with it jumping up to $80-$85 million per for support.
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Old 09-09-2014, 08:52 AM   #1099
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Oh, and I'm not saying we aren't active in roles outside of border patrols. I was saying we're act as more of a support crew than a first strike team in most major conflicts.
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Old 09-09-2014, 09:01 AM   #1100
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They actually paid that much? That's crazy, and way off the numbers I've seen everywhere else. Or is that including the lifetime maintenance and upgrades? If that's the true flyaway cost per unit then yes the Super is not worth choosing over the F35A and my post is completely irrelevant.
Media Release - Department of Defence

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Defence has established the first contract valued at approximately AUD$2.9bn with the United States Navy for the acquisition of 24 F/A-18F Super Hornets and associated support systems. Additional cases will be established later this year for weapons acquisition and sustainment of the aircraft.

The total program investment is approximately $6 billion over 10 years, which includes acquisition and all support costs as well as personnel. Australian personnel will begin Super Hornet training in the United States in 2009. The withdrawal of the F-111 is expected in 2010 with the F/A-18F Super Hornets to be operational that same year.

The F/A-18F Super Hornet is a highly capable, battle proven, multi role aircraft that is currently in service with the US Navy through to 2030 and will ensure our air combat capability edge is maintained through the transition to the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter over the next decade.
Even the Aussies know that the Super Hornet is a stop-gap until the F35 arrives. It's not a competitor as the F35 is far more advanced.
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