F-35 price tag holding steady..........

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You can have PREDICTED NUMBERS for FULL CONFIG aircraft at this stage made by computer modeling , however REAL no.s will come when the FIRST FULLY REPRESENTATIVE version (the one that just started assembly IIRC) is weighed . That is usually what happens in most weapons programs that i have come across .
I am not accusing LM of delivering overly optimistic figures ... OK, actually I do. But I would also assume some weight gain due to USAF gold plating (while there isn't really any additional gold you can put on the JSF). Anyways, the current F-35A is as representative of the main serial version as was the first F-16A Block 0 for the average F-16.
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I am not accusing LM of delivering overly optimistic figures ... OK, actually I do.
LMA is not the only authority with the proper information and the legal authority to judge,comment upon the weight or any other concern on the JSF program.
Anyways, the current F-35A is as representative of the main serial version as was the first F-16A Block 0 for the average F-16.
That is a FACT that is publically well known , Neither LMA nor the USAF nor anyone else is suggesting otherwise . Like I said NG just started work on FIRST REPRESENTATIVE version of the F-35 , and so did Bae in UK , when that is fully assembled they will weigh it however the modeling that they have done is always under scruitiny and their claims are always bound to be vetted by authorities concerned wether they be branches of the DOD connected with the program or arms of the Congress such as GAO . This is pretty standard . However modeling is something that is used in every DOD program , when they model something during testing they constantly compare their results to the model and refine the model accordingly and also validate it . Same thing as commercial Boeing or airbus modeling and DIGITAL TESTING that takes place before actual testing . I doubt that the REAL figures that come after the aircraft is put to the scale would be SIGNIFICANTLY different from the NO.s being predicted right now but we will soon know .
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However modeling is something that is used in every DOD program , when they model something during testing they constantly compare their results to the model and refine the model accordingly and also validate it . Same thing as commercial Boeing or airbus modeling and DIGITAL TESTING that takes place before actual testing .
While Airbus and Boeing regularly hit the mark (B787: ~6%, A380: 1.2%, B747-8: 1.3%) with low error. The B787 must be considered a high deviation. Let's see if the F-35 turns out to be equally well predicted.
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The B787 must be considered a high deviation.
We must not CONFUSE Internal TARGETS with MODEL ESTIMATES , Boeing knew that they would be overweight on the 787 , their models predicted that they would be over-weight , I dont think you imply that boeing have gone 6% over and above what their models were predicting the weight would be ?? If that is the case then i would agree with you however i havent come across the figures which suggest that they were 6% over and above what the models were predicting the weight of the aircraft to be ( the same models which showed to boeing that the aircraft was going to be over weight as compared to the TARGETS they had for the dreamliner) . Are they 6% over and above the weight (weight they were targeting for ?) and do you have any recent article ??
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http://img90.imageshack.us/img90/1779/repro00190fb3.jpg
I personally hope that the RAAF doesnt end up with the F-35A as its sole combat jet (BaE Hawks aside), i am utterly disgusted already by the sacrifices being pushed onto the RAAF to accomodate the F-35, they are massively eroding the capabilities of this air arm for one fighter, at that a fighter completely unsuited to our somewhat unique requirements.
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F-35 is a pretty good F-18 replacement for the Aussies , for a true F-111 type aircraft unfortunately their aint much that exists that also provides modern 5th gen features such as stealth and integrated avionics etc . Aussies have a unique requirment perhaps if filling the same requirment is considered such high priority they could invest 6-10 billion US $ in asking LMA to make for them a bigger F-22B (akin to F-15E) with greater range , speed and greater payload .
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Either way RAAF would still have 2 jets in the F-35 and atleast 1 squadron of Block 2.0 Super Hornets

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F-35 is a pretty good F-18 replacement for the Aussies , for a true F-111 type aircraft unfortunately their aint much that exists that also provides modern 5th gen features such as stealth and integrated avionics etc . Aussies have a unique requirment perhaps if filling the same requirment is considered such high priority they could invest 6-10 billion US $ in asking LMA to make for them a bigger F-22B (akin to F-15E) with greater range , speed and greater payload .
Aussies can always buy a squadron of Backfires or better say Fullbacks from Rossija:diablo: i have a question.Is UK going to buy just F/35b or they'll buy also F/35c?thnx
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i have a question.Is UK going to buy just F/35b or they'll buy also F/35c?thnx
Just F-35B

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So, you think you have seen a "vid" and know you know that Lockheed Martin has build a totally crappy aircraft? Sorry, I think you are overrating your judgment a bit.
I mentioned the vid only to prove the size of the engine, as everyone seems to think that sticking 2 50 inch stages on the front of the f135 would lead to an engine that looks as front heavy as a pegasus does, while in reality it wouldn't, I think LM has come up with a crappy plane in the F-35B because they're not really improving on what they are replacing enough to justify the insane cost, it is bigger, heavier and more complex than a harrier, while only having a slightly higher total payload capacity and combat radius (and that's going on LMs estimates, no hard figures yet), it has no thrust vectoring, the only benefits it has are its speed, and its much mentioned stealth, and it has the 2 HUGE disadvantages of its massive IR signature and the reduced sortie rate that always comes with stealth planes, oh and lets not forget that it's big brother seems to have both rust problems and has started to fall apart. Just out of interest, do you think LM would've gone the same way if they'd had a clean run at the project and not been hamstrung by the terms of the joint strike fighter competition?

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I think LM has come up with a crappy plane in the F-35B because they're not really improving on what they are replacing enough to justify the insane cost, it is bigger, heavier and more complex than a harrier, while only having a slightly higher total payload capacity and combat radius (and that's going on LMs estimates, no hard figures yet), it has no thrust vectoring, the only benefits it has are its speed, and its much mentioned stealth, and it has the 2 HUGE disadvantages of its massive IR signature and the reduced sortie rate that always comes with stealth planes,
With the exception of the "Emergancy Back" stop, which is of dubious use in combat, I find it hard to believe that there is a maneuver that the Harrier CAN do with TVC, that the B CANNOT do without TVC. Matt
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F-35 is a pretty good F-18 replacement for the Aussies , for a true F-111 type aircraft unfortunately their aint much that exists that also provides modern 5th gen features such as stealth and integrated avionics etc . Aussies have a unique requirment perhaps if filling the same requirment is considered such high priority they could invest 6-10 billion US $ in asking LMA to make for them a bigger F-22B (akin to F-15E) with greater range , speed and greater payload .
im sorry but the F-35A just isnt the ideal fighter for this country, though a capable replacement for the ageing F/A-18A/B fleet, there was no proper evaluation process before the selection was made, indeed the officer appointed to oversee the fly-off for the RAAF's next fighter was ordered to close the competition before it had begun and ordered to select the F-35A. The single biggest problem with the F-35A for Australia is one that cannot be changed, it is single engined, when it had long been identified as a requirement that a Hornet rplacement MUST be twin engined, the reason being due to our few operational flying bases and the great distance between them, added to the range at which most ops are conducted, the loss of the engine near guarantees the loss of the aircraft, whereas with a twin engine design this is less likely with a single engine loss, the last single engined fighter operated by the RAAF, the Mirage III, suffered a high loss rate due to engine failure, indeed over 10% of the total number procured (14 out of 108) were lost to engine failure, and at the end price per aircraft the F-35A is looking to have this is something the RAAF can ill afford. As to the eroding of capability it is thus, the RAAF are being forced to pension off the F-111 fleet 10 years ahead of schedule to take on the Super Hornet as an "insurance policy" against the late delivery or indeed total cancellation of the F-35 programme, which with most of the Hornet fleet having exceeded 90% fatigue life consumed and only being barely able to last until the F-35 introduction through reduced flying hours and structural modification, should the F-35 be delayed it could potentially leave the RAAF without an operational air superiority type, a situation that would be an utter embarrassment and yet would be entirely due to the culture of mismanagement that has prevailed throughout defence in the last 10 years.
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The single biggest problem with the F-35A for Australia is one that cannot be changed, it is single engined, when it had long been identified as a requirement that a Hornet rplacement MUST be twin engined, the reason being due to our few operational flying bases and the great distance between them, added to the range at which most ops are conducted, the loss of the engine near guarantees the loss of the aircraft, whereas with a twin engine design this is less likely with a single engine loss, the last single engined fighter operated by the RAAF, the Mirage III, suffered a high loss rate due to engine failure, indeed over 10% of the total number procured (14 out of 108) were lost to engine failure, and at the end price per aircraft the F-35A is looking to have this is something the RAAF can ill afford.
USN has had similar concerns however even they are now comfortable , for them it would be imposible to land without the engine and it would mean almost certain loss (cant crash land) , however statistical evidence points that safety record of Single engined fighters when it comes to ENGINE losses ( USAF operation F-16's) was actually at par or better to the F-18 Fleet .
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USN has had similar concerns however even they are now comfortable , for them it would be imposible to land without the engine and it would mean almost certain loss (cant crash land) , however statistical evidence points that safety record of Single engined fighters when it comes to ENGINE losses ( USAF operation F-16's) was actually at par or better to the F-18 Fleet .
I am coming from the RAAF single engined fighter record, not the USAF's. our loss rate for single engine fighters due to ENGINE failures has always been significantly higher than for an operator like the USAF, excluding our military airbases we have incredibly few airports and landing areas that can accomodate a fighter aircraft, thus elevating the risk level of losing an aircraft. The other side of the coin is the now greatly increased reliability of modern fighter engines, but again the engines in question were not designed to permanently be based in conditions of the type that prevail across our main fighter stations in the Northern Territory and top end of Western Australia, also quite a few of the aircrew i have spoken to have reservations on going to a single engined type.
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I am coming from the RAAF single engined fighter record, not the USAF's. our loss rate for single engine fighters due to ENGINE failures has always been significantly higher than for an operator like the USAF, excluding our military airbases we have incredibly few airports and landing areas that can accomodate a fighter aircraft, thus elevating the risk level of losing an aircraft.
What expereince do RAAF boys have operating US produced single engined fighters ? Lockheed and USAF relied on statistical data of previous gen fighter engine to look into what the next gen of fighter engines would be like , it is wiser to look @ same force level and a product from similar supplier for comparison .
The other side of the coin is the now greatly increased reliability of modern fighter engines, but again the engines in question were not designed to permanently be based in conditions of the type that prevail across our main fighter stations in the Northern Territory and top end of Western Australia, also quite a few of the aircrew i have spoken to have reservations on going to a single engined type.
What unique Enviromental conditions the RAAF birds are custom to that arent their on carriers or out at expeditionary bases such as Middle eastern deserts ??
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What expereince do RAAF boys have operating US produced single engined fighters ? Lockheed and USAF relied on statistical data of previous gen fighter engine to look into what the next gen of fighter engines would be like , it is wiser to look @ same force level and a product from similar supplier for comparison .
That smacks a little of US "ours is better than everyone elses" arrogance im sorry. Although not a single engined type, we have been operating a US aircraft with US engines for nearly 40 years, the F-111. so id say we have quite an understanding of operating US built & engined aircraft in our environment. also look back into RAAF history and youll see that we also have taken a US designed fighter and made it into something even higher performing and more capable than its US counterpart.
What unique Enviromental conditions the RAAF birds are custom to that arent their on carriers or out at expeditionary bases such as Middle eastern deserts ??
ah but are those aircraft intended to operate non stop for 40 years in those conditions? the answer is no. deployed aircraft are rotated back to theyre home bases, carrier aircraft return to theyre shore bases, our F-35's will be in those conditions permanently without respite for theyre ENTIRE service lives, making that unique in comparison to US operation of fighter types.
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That smacks a little of US "ours is better than everyone elses" arrogance im sorry.
no it doesnt , your statistical comparison would no be accurate if you try to calculate engine reliability from f-16------->f-35 by substituting mirage instead of f-16
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no it doesnt , your statistical comparison would no be accurate if you try to calculate engine reliability from f-16------->f-35 by substituting mirage instead of f-16
In talking about the and i emphasize RAAF's single engine fighter ops history, how am i substituting the Mirage for the F-16 when we have never operated the type? Also the F-16 and F-35 engines are fundamentally different powerplants, so how do you compare the two?
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Also the F-16 and F-35 engines are fundamentally different powerplants, so how do you compare the two?
Not comparing them two , just comparing statistical data of engine failure of twin engined F-18 and single engine F-16 . We learn from Historic analysis of competing fighter types . USN used this very data to conclude that the single engined F-35 will do just fine in carrier borne enviroment . As far as UNIQUE RAAF requirment , i agree if they feel their situation is so unique they should either develop their own specific version or buy 2 engined fighters , maybe 4.5 gen like rafale or EF or 5th gen F-22A and buy so in less no because the cost of the raptor is most likely going to be close to double as that of the F-35 (procurment plus lifetime) . If you want 5th gen like qualities like Stealth you have only 3 options , F-22 , F35 or Pakfa. Aussies can choose wether stealth is what they want or not , but if they do want stealth i think the F-35 will be the most cost effective for them even figuring out higher maintaince costs their UNIQUE REQUIRMENTS might put on them .
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Not comparing them two , just comparing statistical data of engine failure of twin engined F-18 and single engine F-16 . We learn from Historic analysis of competing fighter types . USN used this very data to conclude that the single engined F-35 will do just fine in carrier borne enviroment .
In my view that comparison is somewhat flawed on the basis that there is just not enough real world so to speak operational performance data on the F-35's powerplant yet to say wether the statistics are valid for comparison.
As far as UNIQUE RAAF requirment , i agree if they feel their situation is so unique they should either develop their own specific version or buy 2 engined fighters , maybe 4.5 gen like rafale or EF or 5th gen F-22A and buy so in less no because the cost of the raptor is most likely going to be close to double as that of the F-35 (procurment plus lifetime) . If you want 5th gen like qualities like Stealth you have only 3 options , F-22 , F35 or Pakfa. Aussies can choose wether stealth is what they want or not , but if they do want stealth i think the F-35 will be the most cost effective for them even figuring out higher maintaince costs their UNIQUE REQUIRMENTS might put on them .
F-35 and F-22 are only stealth so long as the carry no external ordnance, another detraction is the F-35's massive IR signature. Another bone of contention within Australian forces is that the F-35 is primarily designed as a strike fighter, not an air auperiority machine, and many feel it lacks the nessecary capabilities and edge over potential threat nations CURRENT fighter contingents to warrant its selection, one force model favoured for the RAAF is a single squadron and OCU of F-22's for air superiority tasking and 2 squadrons and an OCU of F-35's for multirole duties.