st21
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Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Mon Jul 10, 2017 2:38 pm

SAS A340 wrote:
Still in the race for the contract are the French Rafale, European Eurofighter and the U.S. Super Hornet.


Boeing dropped out of the competition in April. Should be F-35.
 
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SAS A340
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Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Mon Jul 10, 2017 2:42 pm

st21 wrote:
SAS A340 wrote:
Still in the race for the contract are the French Rafale, European Eurofighter and the U.S. Super Hornet.


Boeing dropped out of the competition in April. Should be F-35.

OK, thanks for clearing that up. :bigthumbsup:
It's not what u do,it's how u do it!
 
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Dutchy
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Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Mon Jul 10, 2017 3:03 pm

So in the running for the 34 a/c are French Rafale, European Eurofighter, and Lockheed F-35. The Belgiums don't want any twin seaters? In that case, the request is tailor-made for the F-35.
Many happy landings, greetings from The Netherlands!
 
Kiwirob
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Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Mon Jul 10, 2017 3:12 pm

Dutchy wrote:
No F-35? That must be the main contender in Belgium.


The Trump effect??
 
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Dutchy
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Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Mon Jul 10, 2017 3:51 pm

Kiwirob wrote:
Dutchy wrote:
No F-35? That must be the main contender in Belgium.


The Trump effect??


Can we leave him out of this discussion.
Many happy landings, greetings from The Netherlands!
 
tommy1808
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Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Mon Jul 10, 2017 4:21 pm

Dutchy wrote:
So in the running for the 34 a/c are French Rafale, European Eurofighter, and Lockheed F-35. The Belgiums don't want any twin seaters? In that case, the request is tailor-made for the F-35.


Probably just made in a way to not exclude the F35 from the start.

Best regards
Thomas
Crooked Donald Trump an his team are extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive, highly classified information. Not fit! #muchworsethanclinton
 
YIMBY
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Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Tue Jul 11, 2017 7:44 am

SAS A340 wrote:
Still in the race for the contract are the French Rafale, European Eurofighter and the U.S. Super Hornet.


I do not think that SuperHornet is truly in the race. The only European country where it still can win an order is Finland, and only because they are current user of Hornet C/D.

The selection of the Belgiums will be definitely political and Rafale is favourite unless the French mess it up. Even a split order is possible if they do not agree, in which case they may get maintenance and training co-operation from France and Netherlands, respectively.
 
YIMBY
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Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Tue Jul 11, 2017 7:51 am

Dutchy wrote:
Kiwirob wrote:
Dutchy wrote:
No F-35? That must be the main contender in Belgium.


The Trump effect??


Can we leave him out of this discussion.


We can leave him out of this discussion, but there is no doubt that he will influence and complicate the decision. It is not only if people like him or not, it is how much you can trust the US.
 
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Dutchy
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Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Tue Jul 11, 2017 9:56 am

YIMBY wrote:
Dutchy wrote:
Kiwirob wrote:

The Trump effect??


Can we leave him out of this discussion.


We can leave him out of this discussion, but there is no doubt that he will influence and complicate the decision. It is not only if people like him or not, it is how much you can trust the US.


Sure, that is indeed a factor. But with Norway, The Netherlands, Italy (Denmark?) flying the F-35, it would be a major issue if they weren't supported anymore. I don't see a scenario where America and Europe are opposites in a combat scenario anyway.
Many happy landings, greetings from The Netherlands!
 
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seahawk
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Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Tue Jul 11, 2017 10:06 am

Considering the final assembly and overhaul facility in Italy, this seems a low risk.
 
Ozair
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Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Tue Jul 11, 2017 9:49 pm

YIMBY wrote:
The selection of the Belgiums will be definitely political and Rafale is favourite unless the French mess it up. Even a split order is possible if they do not agree, in which case they may get maintenance and training co-operation from France and Netherlands, respectively.

That is the first post I have seen anywhere indicating that the Rafale is the favourite. Given we know the scenarios involved http://www.vandeput.fgov.be/sites/default/files/articles/Request%20for%20Government%20Proposal_0.pdf it seems unlikely the Rafale will be able to complete all scenario exercises to the standard of the F-35. Then consider the cost aspects in which the F-35 will certainly be the cheaper option to acquire and likely operate and the F-35 will also have greater commonality with the nations that Beligium cooperates with. LM will also be able to offer greater industrial work over the life of the program.
YIMBY wrote:
We can leave him out of this discussion, but there is no doubt that he will influence and complicate the decision. It is not only if people like him or not, it is how much you can trust the US.

How much Belgium can trust the US has little to do with Trump. He will leave office and the policies and procedures of the US Government will remain largely unchanged, as they have since he arrived. Congress controls decisions on who gets jets and who gets support in the future and Congress controls the finances of the US Government. Belgium has a long standing relationship with the US Government, the US Military and NATO. All are significantly more influential in this decision than Trump and will remain long after Trump has gone.
 
YIMBY
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Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Wed Jul 12, 2017 2:06 pm

Ozair wrote:
YIMBY wrote:
The selection of the Belgiums will be definitely political and Rafale is favourite unless the French mess it up. Even a split order is possible if they do not agree, in which case they may get maintenance and training co-operation from France and Netherlands, respectively.

That is the first post I have seen anywhere indicating that the Rafale is the favourite. Given we know the scenarios involved http://www.vandeput.fgov.be/sites/default/files/articles/Request%20for%20Government%20Proposal_0.pdf it seems unlikely the Rafale will be able to complete all scenario exercises to the standard of the F-35. Then consider the cost aspects in which the F-35 will certainly be the cheaper option to acquire and likely operate and the F-35 will also have greater commonality with the nations that Beligium cooperates with. LM will also be able to offer greater industrial work over the life of the program.


Given the military environment around Belgium, they can definitely afford the second best or even third best alternative to protect their fatherland. Any modern western fighter will do - they are not that different. They could even live with new F-16's, though it makes little sense. They only need F-35 if they intend to participate in Nato strikes in the Middle East or so. Hence they may acquire the planes from whom they want to be friends with and the Belgiums may not even easily agree on that.

Any "certain" claims about the cost should be taken as sales talk. They know the costs when they have the bids. The operational costs of F-35 are not yet even known as it has not yet been so long in operation.

Ozair wrote:
YIMBY wrote:
We can leave him out of this discussion, but there is no doubt that he will influence and complicate the decision. It is not only if people like him or not, it is how much you can trust the US.

How much Belgium can trust the US has little to do with Trump. He will leave office and the policies and procedures of the US Government will remain largely unchanged, as they have since he arrived. Congress controls decisions on who gets jets and who gets support in the future and Congress controls the finances of the US Government. Belgium has a long standing relationship with the US Government, the US Military and NATO. All are significantly more influential in this decision than Trump and will remain long after Trump has gone.


Understanding the European politics may be difficult behind oceans. The relations between and within countries are very complicated, though not hostile, and the leaders run subtle race who is most influential. Within each country the politicians have hard time to stay in power and they should not appear too weak. This also makes them difficult to deal with Trump. You can make very good deals with him, if you just praise him personally as much as you can. In western Europe, however, such behaviour would be considered spineless and would be a political suicide.

Trump's non-commitment to Nato, open intentions to break EU, insults of European leaders and potential for a trade-war create severe tensions. One more ill-designed tweet might upset local people and put Mr Trump in offside position so that no politician with an instinct to protect herself would negotiate with him.

The Europeans are seriously discussing and planning to build a military supply chain without US (though partially that may be propaganda of European military industry, as much as the American military industry intend otherwise).
 
wingman
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Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Wed Jul 12, 2017 3:29 pm

YIMBY wrote:
The Europeans are seriously discussing and planning to build a military supply chain without US (though partially that may be propaganda of European military industry, as much as the American military industry intend otherwise).


This is an interesting comment because as much as I despise Trump and his obscenely uncouth delivery, this is exactly what he wants Europe to do. I honestly don't know what else Europe could do to improve the supply chain. You already have some of the best kit around (jets, transport, tanks, guns, ships, subs..), it's the spending on it and the maintenance/readiness ACROSS THE BOARD that is so woeful. I personally would love to see the alliance strengthened to ever new heights with both the US and Europe finding a better balance between government spending on defense and social/infrastructure projects. Clearly each side is too extreme in their respective priorities but I don't see the US changing anytime soon, not under Trump in the short term and not under Republicans in the long. Certainly we could do much better by swapping 1000 F-35s for 1000 local/regional vocational training centers modeled on the German approach (and Europe adds 1000 Rafales or Typhoons to make up the difference). But preparing our own for the future is never as sexy as You Tube bombing runs. As for Europe, there's no will to change the balance either, you get as excited by new bridges and tunnels as we do by the bombing runs.
 
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Dutchy
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Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Wed Jul 12, 2017 3:54 pm

wingman wrote:
YIMBY wrote:
The Europeans are seriously discussing and planning to build a military supply chain without US (though partially that may be propaganda of European military industry, as much as the American military industry intend otherwise).


This is an interesting comment because as much as I despise Trump and his obscenely uncouth delivery, this is exactly what he wants Europe to do. I honestly don't know what else Europe could do to improve the supply chain. You already have some of the best kit around (jets, transport, tanks, guns, ships, subs..), it's the spending on it and the maintenance/readiness ACROSS THE BOARD that is so woeful. I personally would love to see the alliance strengthened to ever new heights with both the US and Europe finding a better balance between government spending on defense and social/infrastructure projects. Clearly each side is too extreme in their respective priorities but I don't see the US changing anytime soon, not under Trump in the short term and not under Republicans in the long. Certainly we could do much better by swapping 1000 F-35s for 1000 local/regional vocational training centers modeled on the German approach (and Europe adds 1000 Rafales or Typhoons to make up the difference). But preparing our own for the future is never as sexy as You Tube bombing runs. As for Europe, there's no will to change the balance either, you get as excited by new bridges and tunnels as we do by the bombing runs.


Interesting comments, thanks for that. Europe could benefit the most by interoperation, that will bring so much more bang for the buck, even without adding more defense money. But that will mean a more centralized EU, don't know if that is achievable in the short term (ok, I know, it isn't). Bi-lateral cooperation is much more achievable and you see all over the Europe prime examples of this:
- New MRTT by The Netherlands, Norway, Luxembourg, Germany (Belgium and perhaps others)
- C-130 cooperation France / Germany
- Air policing in the Baltics

etc. etc. etc.
Many happy landings, greetings from The Netherlands!
 
Ozair
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Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Wed Jul 12, 2017 10:34 pm

YIMBY wrote:

Given the military environment around Belgium, they can definitely afford the second best or even third best alternative to protect their fatherland. Any modern western fighter will do - they are not that different. They could even live with new F-16's, though it makes little sense. They only need F-35 if they intend to participate in Nato strikes in the Middle East or so. Hence they may acquire the planes from whom they want to be friends with and the Belgiums may not even easily agree on that.

Belgium has made it very clear what scenarios they expect their future fighter must achieve. Perhaps you should read those instead of trying to determine what Belgium needs in the future. What will become clear if the evaluation is made public is that the F-35 is best placed of all potential aircraft to achieve those scenarios and meet required capabilities and will be the cheapest option to do so.
YIMBY wrote:

Any "certain" claims about the cost should be taken as sales talk. They know the costs when they have the bids. The operational costs of F-35 are not yet even known as it has not yet been so long in operation.

There is completely certainly in the current F-35 acquisition price and additional certainty associated with continued reductions in that price as the per year quantities increase. It is known, understood and planned for.

The operating costs are becoming more clear as more aircraft are inducted and operated by host nations. What is clear is that operating the F-35 in US service will cost approximately 10-15% more than the F-16. For other nations being part of a global supply chain, upgrade program and user community soon to span 15 nations there is plenty to be certain about. Against that the Rafale has four operating nations, two of which will contribute nothing to future enhancement, while the third is so politically fractured no one honestly knows what will happen. Either way, total acquisition of the Rafale will likely be in the 300-350 range, 10% of the F-35…. Tell me going forward which one is going to be easier to support and will have the buying power to lower operational cost.

YIMBY wrote:

Understanding the European politics may be difficult behind oceans. The relations between and within countries are very complicated, though not hostile, and the leaders run subtle race who is most influential. Within each country the politicians have hard time to stay in power and they should not appear too weak. This also makes them difficult to deal with Trump. You can make very good deals with him, if you just praise him personally as much as you can. In western Europe, however, such behaviour would be considered spineless and would be a political suicide.

Trump's non-commitment to Nato, open intentions to break EU, insults of European leaders and potential for a trade-war create severe tensions. One more ill-designed tweet might upset local people and put Mr Trump in offside position so that no politician with an instinct to protect herself would negotiate with him.

That is a whole lot of air and has little substance or factual basis to it. Can you point to one single military acquisition that has not gone ahead because Trump is now President?

People have this strange misunderstanding that politics, and for some reason especially European politics, is a local thing and cannot be understood by outsiders. I have lived in Europe, work with Europeans regularly and are well read on political issues across the globe.

What is clear is people on this forum put way too much emphasis in Trump and show a lack of understanding of US policy. Trump may get a few headlines for stupid things but US policy with respect to NATO, foreign military acquisitions and long term relations between nations has changed little and is highly unlikely to change in any significant way while Trump remains President.
 
YIMBY
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Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Thu Jul 13, 2017 7:20 pm

Ozair wrote:
YIMBY wrote:

Given the military environment around Belgium, they can definitely afford the second best or even third best alternative to protect their fatherland. Any modern western fighter will do - they are not that different. They could even live with new F-16's, though it makes little sense. They only need F-35 if they intend to participate in Nato strikes in the Middle East or so. Hence they may acquire the planes from whom they want to be friends with and the Belgiums may not even easily agree on that.

Belgium has made it very clear what scenarios they expect their future fighter must achieve. Perhaps you should read those instead of trying to determine what Belgium needs in the future. What will become clear if the evaluation is made public is that the F-35 is best placed of all potential aircraft to achieve those scenarios and meet required capabilities and will be the cheapest option to do so.

The scenarios were almost like written for F-35 and one year ago I took it as granted that Belgium is a F-35 country.
Ozair wrote:
YIMBY wrote:

Any "certain" claims about the cost should be taken as sales talk. They know the costs when they have the bids. The operational costs of F-35 are not yet even known as it has not yet been so long in operation.

There is completely certainly in the current F-35 acquisition price and additional certainty associated with continued reductions in that price as the per year quantities increase. It is known, understood and planned for.

There may be certainty only for those who have a binding contract, certainly for no one else. And so far in almost any major weapon trade there has been surprise costs after the deal.

The acquisition cost includes:
1) the production cost of an additional unit
2) a fair share of general costs like management and marketing (bribes)
3) a fair share of development, investment and other sunk costs
4) commissions
5) subsidies
6) taxes, customs and duties

Item 1 may be well known, but items 2-5 vary and can be tuned to each customer. It depends among others on the backlog and political necessities of the production country. Every president wants to get jobs but also wants to get profits. Every nation has its pride in play.

I almost forgot, you have to buy bombs and bullets, too.

Ozair wrote:
The operating costs are becoming more clear as more aircraft are inducted and operated by host nations. What is clear is that operating the F-35 in US service will cost approximately 10-15% more than the F-16. For other nations being part of a global supply chain, upgrade program and user community soon to span 15 nations there is plenty to be certain about. Against that the Rafale has four operating nations, two of which will contribute nothing to future enhancement, while the third is so politically fractured no one honestly knows what will happen. Either way, total acquisition of the Rafale will likely be in the 300-350 range, 10% of the F-35…. Tell me going forward which one is going to be easier to support and will have the buying power to lower operational cost.


Operation costs in the production country may be very different from the operation costs in a distant country. Ask what are the operation costs of Russian planes in West. For some planes mid-life updates have been more costly than for others. We do not know F-35's upgradability and longevity in practice, though theoretically promising.

Note that fellow Nato countries operate Typhoons, Rafales, Gripens (and ageing Tornados, Mirages, F-16, F-18, even MiG's) so it is definitely not only F-35's that are around.

Ozair wrote:

YIMBY wrote:

Understanding the European politics may be difficult behind oceans. The relations between and within countries are very complicated, though not hostile, and the leaders run subtle race who is most influential. Within each country the politicians have hard time to stay in power and they should not appear too weak. This also makes them difficult to deal with Trump. You can make very good deals with him, if you just praise him personally as much as you can. In western Europe, however, such behaviour would be considered spineless and would be a political suicide.

Trump's non-commitment to Nato, open intentions to break EU, insults of European leaders and potential for a trade-war create severe tensions. One more ill-designed tweet might upset local people and put Mr Trump in offside position so that no politician with an instinct to protect herself would negotiate with him.

That is a whole lot of air and has little substance or factual basis to it. Can you point to one single military acquisition that has not gone ahead because Trump is now President?

Has there even been a single military acquisition recently that has not been essentially agreed before Trump?
Ozair wrote:
People have this strange misunderstanding that politics, and for some reason especially European politics, is a local thing and cannot be understood by outsiders. I have lived in Europe, work with Europeans regularly and are well read on political issues across the globe.

What is clear is people on this forum put way too much emphasis in Trump and show a lack of understanding of US policy. Trump may get a few headlines for stupid things but US policy with respect to NATO, foreign military acquisitions and long term relations between nations has changed little and is highly unlikely to change in any significant way while Trump remains President.


It is not enough to understand European politics, you have to understand 27+ national political cultures and even more as some countries include several regional politics, particularly Belgium that is often referred to in plural. I certainly do not understand even half of those.

Short term relations with USA have changed more than little. While the US-EU relations improved remarkably during Obama administration - previously spoiled by Bush Jr - Mr Trump has broken all that enormous goodwill that USA enjoyed. Now every head of state is afraid to be seen as the lapdog of Trump, except a few loyal followers. While there is a significant probability that Trump learns his lessons (as Kennedy did after the most disastrous start of US presidency ever) and his advisers start controlling the power, there is a non-zero probability for otherwise.
 
Ozair
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Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Thu Jul 13, 2017 10:17 pm

YIMBY wrote:

The scenarios were almost like written for F-35 and one year ago I took it as granted that Belgium is a F-35 country.

The scenarios were written for the threat that the Belgium military expects to face in 2030. Should it be a surprise that the only aircraft in the competition designed post 2000 is the one most likely to meet and achieve them?

YIMBY wrote:

There may be certainty only for those who have a binding contract, certainly for no one else. And so far in almost any major weapon trade there has been surprise costs after the deal.

The acquisition cost includes:
1) the production cost of an additional unit
2) a fair share of general costs like management and marketing (bribes)
3) a fair share of development, investment and other sunk costs
4) commissions
5) subsidies
6) taxes, customs and duties
Item 1 may be well known, but items 2-5 vary and can be tuned to each customer. It depends among others on the backlog and political necessities of the production country. Every president wants to get jobs but also wants to get profits. Every nation has its pride in play.

For non partner nations the F-35 can be acquired through the FMS route. This is a clear and transparent process. The expected fees associated with any FMS deal is the price the US military paid plus 6% administration fees. That is it. Many nations work within the FMS construct and get value for money and transparency.

As for other fees, we have ample evidence of how admission to long term sustainment programs work, including the C-17, C-130J, F-16 and F-18. No one is being price gouged here, the sustainment agreements are good value for the respective nations and pool resources to make the most of the money available.
YIMBY wrote:

I almost forgot, you have to buy bombs and bullets, too.

Except for cannon ammunition the F-35 is compatible with all munitions the Belgiums currently operate. On the other hand the Rafale is not and French weapons typically cost 50-75% more than equivalent US ones primarily based on lower production runs.
YIMBY wrote:


Operation costs in the production country may be very different from the operation costs in a distant country. Ask what are the operation costs of Russian planes in West. For some planes mid-life updates have been more costly than for others. We do not know F-35's upgradability and longevity in practice, though theoretically promising.

Exactly. Which is why I compared a US operational cost to a US operational cost. Many nations operate the F-16 at significantly cheaper per hour rates than the US and it is likely they will operate the F-35 in a similar way. The upgradability of the F-35 is very clear, early Blk aircraft have already been upgraded to Blk 3i standard and Blk 3i aircraft today will be upgraded to Blk 3F when that arrives. The blk upgrades are synced to every second one being hardware of software respectively. It is again a clear and well understood process.
The issue that continues to present itself is your lack of understanding of the F-35 program. You keep making claims but these are based on a lack of information or understanding.
YIMBY wrote:
Note that fellow Nato countries operate Typhoons, Rafales, Gripens (and ageing Tornados, Mirages, F-16, F-18, even MiG's) so it is definitely not only F-35's that are around.

This discussion isn’t about what is currently operated, it is about what they will operate 10-20-30 years from now. That is what commonality is about. If we look 20 years from now there will be Typhoons, Rafales and overwhelmingly F-35s and that is about it. Of those three, which will be able to handles threat scenarios in 2040 or 2050 or even 2060? Only one is currently planned to be in service in 2060 with the primary customer, making long term support and sustainability, and continued upgrades a near guarantee.
 
tommy1808
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Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Fri Jul 14, 2017 11:26 am

wingman wrote:
YIMBY wrote:
The Europeans are seriously discussing and planning to build a military supply chain without US (though partially that may be propaganda of European military industry, as much as the American military industry intend otherwise).


This is an interesting comment because as much as I despise Trump and his obscenely uncouth delivery, this is exactly what he wants Europe to do. .


Is it though? I can´t recall him asking for Europe to have an independent supply of military hardware or does he want Europe to spend more money?

best regards
Thomas
Crooked Donald Trump an his team are extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive, highly classified information. Not fit! #muchworsethanclinton
 
tommy1808
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Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Fri Jul 14, 2017 11:32 am

Ozair wrote:
This discussion isn’t about what is currently operated, it is about what they will operate 10-20-30 years from now. That is what commonality is about. If we look 20 years from now there will be Typhoons, Rafales and overwhelmingly F-35s and that is about it. Of those three, which will be able to handles threat scenarios in 2040 or 2050 or even 2060? Only one is currently planned to be in service in 2060 with the primary customer, making long term support and sustainability, and continued upgrades a near guarantee.


25+ years from now Moores Law ff. has buried any notion of stealth anyways, and a fairly good chance that directed energy weapons will pose a whole set of new problems for fighters.

best regards
Thomas
Crooked Donald Trump an his team are extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive, highly classified information. Not fit! #muchworsethanclinton
 
Ozair
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Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Fri Jul 14, 2017 12:30 pm

tommy1808 wrote:
25+ years from now Moores Law ff. has buried any notion of stealth anyways


That is grasping at straws. There is no evidence that an increase in computing power is going to negate the effectiveness of stealth.

In fact there is so little evidence that first tier nations continue to develop and field stealth fighters while second tier nations like Japan, Korea and Turkey are all pursuing stealth fighter designs which are likely to come into service just before that time. Probably include France/Germany if that project ever gets off the ground. Would be a gutsy move by the French/Germans to build a non VLO platform because they thought Moore's law would make stealth redundant.

tommy1808 wrote:
a fairly good chance that directed energy weapons will pose a whole set of new problems for fighters.

Probably, but stealth will still play a massive role in determining how the engagement will begin and who will have first look and first shot.
 
tommy1808
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Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Fri Jul 14, 2017 1:58 pm

Ozair wrote:
tommy1808 wrote:
25+ years from now Moores Law ff. has buried any notion of stealth anyways


That is grasping at straws. There is no evidence that an increase in computing power is going to negate the effectiveness of stealth.


Yes, there is, it is called physics. We can already build detectors that can detect single photons for a long time. The only problem using single photons to detect an aircraft is to identify signal within the myriads of photons from noise. But that is just and only a matter of computing power, nothing else. Stealth pushes the radar return far deeper into the noise than conventional aircraft, but there is still plenty of signal to be had. If you put the computing power, and noise reduction techniques that come with it, of CERN into the task, they´d probably detect you a B2 on the moon without even feeling challenged. A signal from Voyager is, napkin backside, 10 to the 6th power or so weaker than the return of a 100 KW Radar from a 0.1m2 target at 400km. And we even get data out of that signal.
Deep learning algorithm are also getting extremely well in detecting signal in a lot of noise and can work on 16 Bit floats, so can be extremely fast. What out customers do with those systems, even those that are not powerful enough to make it on any export control list, is flat out amazing.

So, we know that the radar return from a stealth aircraft is well within our technical abilities in principel , and we know that finding the signal in all that noise has also been done quite regularly, it only is far from being installed on an AWACS and even further from installing it on a fighter or making it able to track several targets at a time. But that is just a matter of time.

In fact there is so little evidence that first tier nations continue to develop and field stealth fighters while second tier nations like Japan, Korea and Turkey are all pursuing stealth fighter designs which are likely to come into service just before that time. Probably include France/Germany if that project ever gets off the ground. Would be a gutsy move by the French/Germans to build a non VLO platform because they thought Moore's law would make stealth redundant.


There is plenty of evidence that everybody is confident about detecting stealth aircraft by the simple fact that no one is busy testing new technologies to detect them, despite some few east block system going back to the 80s and despite good, feasible ideas for countermeasures. Or the US government telling Taiwan that new AESA radars for their F16 are enough of a counter new Chinese stealth aircraft.

tommy1808 wrote:
a fairly good chance that directed energy weapons will pose a whole set of new problems for fighters.

Probably, but stealth will still play a massive role in determining how the engagement will begin and who will have first look and first shot.


Yes, of course. Only the golden Age of stealth, where those aircraft can basically strike with impunity, will come to an end.

You´d still better in a stealth aircraft, especially in large engagements, but that will also just last so long. Meaning as long there isn´t enough computing power to track all those stealthy targets at once.
Of course at the time of DEW, first shot pretty much means victory.

best regards
Thomas
Crooked Donald Trump an his team are extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive, highly classified information. Not fit! #muchworsethanclinton
 
wingman
Posts: 3113
Joined: Thu May 27, 1999 4:25 am

Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Fri Jul 14, 2017 6:22 pm

tommy1808 wrote:
Is it though? I can´t recall him asking for Europe to have an independent supply of military hardware or does he want Europe to spend more money?


I think he's been clear about his displeasure being the lack of commitment to the agreed GDP %s going to defense in NATO countries. It's about the money. The world-class kit is already there. I mean outside of sheer numbers and multiple aircraft carrier groups there isn't anything Europe lacks that I can think of. Maybe Germany and France think they need a new stealth fighter. I won't argue the point but imagine what Germany could do with that money in terms of polishing up its existing hardware. A shit-kicking rapid reaction force of 25,000 including A400s, Typhoons, Leopards, diesel subs, special forces..all up to snuff and tightly coordinated for deployment to the Baltics in 48 hours? That's the kind of readiness I think the US would like to see and what would help keep Putin sniffing in his own backyard.
 
LightningZ71
Posts: 247
Joined: Sat Aug 27, 2016 10:59 pm

Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Fri Jul 14, 2017 9:48 pm

RE: stealth vs. computing power.

The key to detecting a stealth aircraft relies on getting enough signal back from the target to build a reliable position estimate. Operators of stealth aircraft know where their craft are most detectable and least detectable from and build their attack plans accordingly as they see any search radars looking for them. The solution to this is distributed emitter and detection technology. You would have to build a prohibitively large and powerful radar emitter and antenna to be able to light up a true stealth aircraft enough to detect it before it reaches weapons stand-off range. You'd also have to be lucky to have it pointed in the right direction.

Instead, what you build is a network of omnidirectional emitters and receivers all over the area you want to control. They can be mounted on trucks and mobile and periodically relocated. They do not have to be overly powerful or overly sensitive, just strong enough for multiple emitters to hear them after a bounce, and just sensitive enough to be able to tell what type of signal that you're receiving. The computing power comes in on the signal processing. You have to be good enough to read through noise, jamming ,etc. You also have to be good enough to take in the data from all of the receivers that are scattered around, compare the received signals to the transmitted ones, knowing the locations of all the devices. You'll get an ever changing picture as various receivers pick up reflections off the fighters as they move through the control zone. With just three emitters and three receivers in any given area receiving a bounced signal, you can realistically calculate where the reflections all came from, in near real time (transmission delays will affect things). You'll know where the fighter is within a few tens of yards at any given moment, which is enough to get a missile in the air that has ATG pointed in the right direction. Add to that the improvements in signal processing in computer vision that is being applied in the infra-red range and IR detection systems are gaining usable range over time as well. Just like the F-35 combines all sorts of various inputs from its various antennas and radars and cameras, ground A2Ad systems can do the same things, however they aren't as limited in volume and power budget, so they can be made to work faster and with more data.

Stealth is absolutely a problem that can be cracked with computer power. The race is to keep the stealth platforms drapped in enough ECM and downsized enough to be intrinsically harder to see due to size based reflectivity reductions. Enter autonomous drones in small, highly maneuverable platforms and semi-stealthy jamming system operating near the edge of the battlespace supporting them...
 
Ozair
Posts: 1571
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2005 8:38 am

Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Fri Jul 14, 2017 10:54 pm

tommy1808 wrote:

Yes, there is, it is called physics. We can already build detectors that can detect single photons for a long time. The only problem using single photons to detect an aircraft is to identify signal within the myriads of photons from noise. But that is just and only a matter of computing power, nothing else. Stealth pushes the radar return far deeper into the noise than conventional aircraft, but there is still plenty of signal to be had. If you put the computing power, and noise reduction techniques that come with it, of CERN into the task, they´d probably detect you a B2 on the moon without even feeling challenged. A signal from Voyager is, napkin backside, 10 to the 6th power or so weaker than the return of a 100 KW Radar from a 0.1m2 target at 400km. And we even get data out of that signal.
Deep learning algorithm are also getting extremely well in detecting signal in a lot of noise and can work on 16 Bit floats, so can be extremely fast. What out customers do with those systems, even those that are not powerful enough to make it on any export control list, is flat out amazing.

So, we know that the radar return from a stealth aircraft is well within our technical abilities in principel , and we know that finding the signal in all that noise has also been done quite regularly, it only is far from being installed on an AWACS and even further from installing it on a fighter or making it able to track several targets at a time. But that is just a matter of time.

Except what you're talking about is nice in theory and not valid in practice. Gain remains a key radar equation value and for that you need antennas with gain sufficient to detect those signals. To detect a voyager signal the deep space network uses antennas such as the following,
Image
and in doing so are looking for an easy target in the relatively empty sky. Compared to the noisy ground environment the problem becomes one that the physics of computing power is insufficient to defeat. Detecting a voyager signal is also easy when you know exactly what frequency you are looking for.
The reality of your claim is there isn't a nation on the earth that is expecting to use large gain antennas on aircraft, for obvious reasons, and it is well understood that these types of antennas used in ground applications are very easy to tactically destroy or degrade.

The other side of the issue is the radar system you plan to detect is transmitting not in the 100kw range but in single W range across 4 GHz of frequency.

tommy1808 wrote:
There is plenty of evidence that everybody is confident about detecting stealth aircraft by the simple fact that no one is busy testing new technologies to detect them, despite some few east block system going back to the 80s and despite good, feasible ideas for countermeasures. Or the US government telling Taiwan that new AESA radars for their F16 are enough of a counter new Chinese stealth aircraft.

Yeah sure, so much evidence it is available in present fielded military systems and litters scientific papers of the globe. That is why China and Russia continue to develop and field stealth airframes, as do other nations, because it is so easy to detect them that the value of stealth is negated.

The reality is that nations continue to spend vastly more sums of money on developing stealth technology than they do on counter-stealth radars. A review of the effectiveness of stealth and anti-stealth technologies article I posted from the Journal of Computations and Modelling here, http://www.scienpress.com/Upload/JCM/Vol%204_1_9.pdf shows there is plenty of knowledge of counter stealth systems and these systems have severe tactical limitations and require extensive communications and transmission networks. Plugging a good algorithm backed up by more computing power doesn't solve the issue.
 
ThePointblank
Posts: 2768
Joined: Sat Jan 17, 2009 11:39 pm

Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Sat Jul 15, 2017 8:19 am

Ozair wrote:
tommy1808 wrote:

Yes, there is, it is called physics. We can already build detectors that can detect single photons for a long time. The only problem using single photons to detect an aircraft is to identify signal within the myriads of photons from noise. But that is just and only a matter of computing power, nothing else. Stealth pushes the radar return far deeper into the noise than conventional aircraft, but there is still plenty of signal to be had. If you put the computing power, and noise reduction techniques that come with it, of CERN into the task, they´d probably detect you a B2 on the moon without even feeling challenged. A signal from Voyager is, napkin backside, 10 to the 6th power or so weaker than the return of a 100 KW Radar from a 0.1m2 target at 400km. And we even get data out of that signal.
Deep learning algorithm are also getting extremely well in detecting signal in a lot of noise and can work on 16 Bit floats, so can be extremely fast. What out customers do with those systems, even those that are not powerful enough to make it on any export control list, is flat out amazing.

So, we know that the radar return from a stealth aircraft is well within our technical abilities in principel , and we know that finding the signal in all that noise has also been done quite regularly, it only is far from being installed on an AWACS and even further from installing it on a fighter or making it able to track several targets at a time. But that is just a matter of time.

Except what you're talking about is nice in theory and not valid in practice. Gain remains a key radar equation value and for that you need antennas with gain sufficient to detect those signals. To detect a voyager signal the deep space network uses antennas such as the following,
Image
and in doing so are looking for an easy target in the relatively empty sky. Compared to the noisy ground environment the problem becomes one that the physics of computing power is insufficient to defeat. Detecting a voyager signal is also easy when you know exactly what frequency you are looking for.
The reality of your claim is there isn't a nation on the earth that is expecting to use large gain antennas on aircraft, for obvious reasons, and it is well understood that these types of antennas used in ground applications are very easy to tactically destroy or degrade.

Not only that, such radars are big and relatively fixed in location, so they become relatively easy targets for these:

Image

Image

Remember, in day 1 of a war, early warning, air defence systems, and communications grids are among the first targets struck in a conflict, to blind and paralyze the enemy. Follow on attacks will keep the enemy blind and paralyzed.

Using lower frequency bands requires a lot of power - this is very dangerous for an emitter. The more power you pump through your radar, the further away someone can pick up that radar without you detecting them. It's a similar situation with sonar in submarines; a sub that is actively pinging underwater can be heard by a enemy sub much further away than the sub that is actively pinging can detect a enemy. With advanced RWR or Passive radars (such as those present in LO aircraft), precise geo-location of such radar units can be known from very far away - much before entering their ‘detecting zone’.

That gives pilots and mission planners options; they can go around those radars by slipping through blind spots, or they can engage those radars from long distance with something like JASSM or JSOW to neutralize the radar and create openings in the air defence grid, or they can do what they did in Gulf War I, and have attack helicopters strike at them from very low altitude below their radar horizon.

Now, add in the jamming that's going on, degrading what's left of your radar's network's performance, and the decoy's in the air creating tons of false targets (such as MALD), one can make life a living hell for enemy air defence commanders trying to sort out their battle picture.
 
tommy1808
Posts: 5786
Joined: Thu Nov 21, 2013 3:24 pm

Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Sat Jul 15, 2017 9:46 am

Ozair wrote:
To detect a voyager signal the deep space network uses antennas such as the following,
Image


And what size does that Antenna have if you make the surface 10 to the 6th power smaller....thought so.

Compared to the noisy ground environment the problem becomes one that the physics of computing power is insufficient to defeat. Detecting a voyager signal is also easy when you know exactly what frequency you are looking for.


A) space isn't that devoid of noise as you seem to think. Heck, the first guys to stumple across radio waves from space frantically cleaned the dish to get rid of that noise. Then they realised what it was....
B) it's a radar, you know the frequency of the return signal just as well
C) compared with other noise we extract sigma 6 signals from on regular basis, radio frequency ranges are almost devoid of noise.
D) ever looked at the input signal of a WiFi AP or LTE modem? Or the input of a high speed computer bus like PCIe? They handle enormous amounts of noise and interference on one $ chip and cent structures and still extract hundreds of MBit of useful information from it.

Yeah sure, so much evidence it is available in present fielded military systems and litters scientific papers of the globe. That is why China and Russia continue to develop and field stealth airframes, as do other nations, because it is so easy to detect them that the value of stealth is negated.


So the US government and military is lying to Taiwan, deliberately giving them a false feeling of safety. Got that. But they are not lying about stealth in any other way. Totally consistent argument, I am impressed.

The reality is that nations continue to spend vastly more sums of money on developing stealth technology than they do on counter-stealth radars.


Your argument actually supports my point or is meaninglessness. Either we have a sensible investment strategy, in that case obviously larger investments are needed to yield the same relative improvement in stealth than in counter stealth, or investment strategy is not sensitive and the budget amounts are just meaningless.

Best regards
Thomas
Crooked Donald Trump an his team are extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive, highly classified information. Not fit! #muchworsethanclinton
 
Ozair
Posts: 1571
Joined: Mon Jan 31, 2005 8:38 am

Re: Belgian F-16 Replacement RFI To Be Issued Soon

Sun Jul 16, 2017 8:46 am

tommy1808 wrote:

Your argument actually supports my point or is meaninglessness. Either we have a sensible investment strategy, in that case obviously larger investments are needed to yield the same relative improvement in stealth than in counter stealth, or investment strategy is not sensitive and the budget amounts are just meaningless.

Best regards
Thomas

Tommy, you haven't provided a single source reference to support your claims which are contrary to the current development and acquisition budgets of first and second tier Air Forces around the globe, Air Forces that have access to all the scientists and intelligence officers they need to make a determination that Stealth is dead or will be shortly. In contrast, nations across the globe continue to invest vast sums of money on stealth aircraft, missiles, UAVs, ships etc and expect many of these systems to be in operation for 40+ years. In the interests of not cluttering up this thread any more with this nonsense I'm happy to continue it in a separate thread on the topic.

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