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Sturgeon's House


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Posts posted by Boagrius

  1. On 1/11/2021 at 11:18 AM, GregHouse said:

    Apologies for going back a ways. Also I'm new here, hiya. 

    A minor corrective point:
    The F35 used in the test was AF-2, which was using Block 2B software

    As a flight sciences aircraft, AF-02 doesn't have mission systems and is on a special block of very limited software known internally as 0.5 from which it will never substantially move up. The more relevant numbers would be whatever its Vehicle Systems software was, IIRC in those days it was something like version 30 point something (now they're on version 40+). So I guess you could say it had the 2B vehicle systems software, but saying it had 2B as a whole would be a little incorrect.

    Spot on otherwise.

    Thanks for the correction. Please feel free to refer to my main post on the topic (and any subsequent posts). I compiled it (and having been subsequently using it) as something of a repository for debunking common myths about the F35.


    12 hours ago, SH_MM said:

    AMRAAM-ER is not identical with ESSM Block II though and ESSM Block II is not integrated into NASAMS. AMRAAM-ER uses a modified ESSM Block I missile body with the less capable and cheaper seeker from AMRAAM as well as the warhead and datalink antennas. ESSM Block II is a seeker, warhead and datalink upgrade only, so it directly moves in the opposite direction of AMRAAM-ER. Given the different requirements and natures of the datalink (i.e. ESSM Block II being integrated in AEGIS), an unmodified missile is probably incompatible with NASAMS.

    Thanks for the detailed response. I believe NASAMs was tested with ESSM Blk I back in 2012 so I had assumed a move to ESSM Blk II should be possible - this may not have been a safe assumption. That said, given that Australia's CEATAC/MOUNT radars are derived from those used in the ANZAC Class ASMD upgrade (IIRC), I am still left wondering whether they may yet be able to provide the needed datalink to ESSM Blk II. This strikes me as desirable since - as you alluded to yourself - it is likely to be the most sophisticated missile of the bunch, while still being relatively affordable. 

  3. 7 hours ago, SH_MM said:


    NASAMS is not suited for battlefield air defence - that's why Norway (where NASAMS was developed) is buying IRIS-T SLS mounted on a M113/G5 hull.


    While Raytheon and Kongsberg have integrated the AIM-9X missile into NASAMS to act as SHORAD system against highly mobile targets, I don't think any operator has decided to actually purchase the AIM-9X missile for NASAMS or uses NASAMS with the AIM-9X.



    As for the system itself, it is mainly used for static asset defence and covers the low end of medium range air-defence. Its footprint (command post vehicle, radar/generator, launcher) is comparable to larger systems, it is not really a quick-to-deploy system that can escort other combat vehicles on the battlefield.


    I also don't agree with heretic88's opinion regarding NASAMS being the best system of its kind in the world. It has its strong points (using MOTS/COTS components for cost-reduction), but it also has a number of drawbacks. Each launcher vehicle carries only a very small number of missiles (four on the high-mobility launchers, six on truck-mounted or static launchers), there is no ability to defend against ballistic missiles or fast-flying/maneuverable targets (unless using AIM-9X, which massively limits range) and performance is only average. I don't see any specifical advantage over IRIS-T SLM, Sky Sabre and SPYDER which all were shortlisted for the Swiss BODLUV 2020 program - unlike NASAMS.


    The British Sky Sabre system using CAMM and CAMM-ER missiles provides the same range coverage using more modern missiles (of which eight can be carried on a truck) and has a smaller footprint (one truck with launcher, one truck with command post and radar) - though as medium range system it is also unsuited for battlefield air defence. The Swiss MoD concluded that CAMM is incapable of defeating fast flying & highly maneuveerable targets (i.e. small UAVs and/or ballistic missiles) due to the lack of thrust-vectoring, somthing that also applies to NASAMS.


    SPYDER is basically an Israeli equivalent to NASAMS, using the Python 5 (~ AIM-9X equivalent missile, but using lots of control surfaces instead of thrurst-vectoring) and Derby (~ AIM-120 equivalent). When using both effectors (which is kind of questionable, as they have different ranges), it was considered the best solution by the Swiss MoD before shortlisting, but Rafael failed to disclose relevant information to the Swiss government when it came to the evaluation, resulting in SPYDER being excluded.


    IRIS-T SLM with its enlarged missiles can provide air-defence up to 40 kilometers range (comparable to AMRAAM-ER/ESSM and CAMM-ER), but offers thurst-vectoring for ballistic missile defence and defeating highly maneuverable UAVs. It ended up being declared the most promising solution for the Swiss BODLUV 2020 program, but bad PR and disputes between Diehl and the Swiss MoD (mostly regarding the ability of the missile to hit targets in bad weather, which Diehl proved in actual tests, but Swiss "experts" on their paper evaluation of the seeker declared it unfit for bad weather firing) lead to the program being restarted with a greater focus on range (with apparently only SAMP/T and Patriot being considered).



    Right, which speaks to why AMRAAM-ER or ESSM Blk II is probably a preferable effector for NASAMS users going forward - it gives the system proper medium range reach with a TVC equipped missile. 

  4. The RAAF has declared IOC with its F35A fleet:



    Just two years after the first two F-35As arrived in Australia, the RAAF now has 30 F-35As in service with 3SQN and 2 Operational Conversion Unit (2OCU) at Williamtown, and an additional three aircraft at Luke AFB in Arizona preparing to be ferried across the Pacific.

    The IOC milestone recognises the service’s ability to conduct type-conversion courses for pilots and maintainers in Australia, that Australia can produce its own mission data files (MDF), and that a sufficiently deep level of spares and sovereign industry support has been established. The RAAF now has more than 40 qualified F-35A pilots and 220 maintainers trained on the F-35A.

    The aircraft has been subjected to a detailed verification and validation (V&V) process over the past two years, a process that has proven the F-35A can operate with other ADF capabilities such as the E-7A Wedgetail and KC-30A MRTT, can be deployed to forward bases such as Townsville or Tindal, and can integrate with the ADF’s command and control system.

    “For the last two years, Defence has rigorously tested the F-35A fleet to assess aircraft and system performance, and declare this important milestone,” Defence Minister Senator Linda Reynolds said in a December 28 statement.

    “I would like to thank everyone that has worked so hard to get us to this point; to have accomplished all the required testing and materiel delivery is remarkable. The (ADF) now has an F-35A squadron ready to conduct technologically advanced strike and air combat roles, and another squadron dedicated to providing world-class training here in Australia.”



  5. I agree although given that NASAMS is not as inherently mobile as an independent system like Tor or Roland, I think it really needs AMRAAM-ER or ESSM Blk II to keep it relevant going forward. It's also not ideally suited to C-RAM or C-UAS, hence why something like the 30mm Skyranger strikes me as an attractive complementary system, especially if the two can be datalinked together to share the same targeting information.

  6. 14 hours ago, Kal said:

    Nominally Lynx is a 44 combat weight vehicle (including 6 tonnes) so perhaps 38 tonne transport load.

    Nominally Redback is a 42 combat weight vehicle (including 6 tonnes?) so perhaps 36 tonne transport load.

    the difference between conventional tracks/suspension VS rubber tracks/suspension is about 2 tonnes, resulting in weight parity

    So the weight appear evenly matched, but perhaps Redback marketing is overstating their weight? don't know.  Lynx has stated more baked in weight growth potential to 50 tonnes


    for efficiency gains. rubber tracks typically are tensioned at twice the tension of conventional tracks,  that could result in some structural consequences.


    Great, thanks for the input. I guess we will know more once they have both been properly put through their paces (or shot to pieces?).

  7. Do we have a sense of which vehicle is likely to be the better protected one? I would have expected the Lynx to have the upper hand here if only based on it being the heavier vehicle. I do wonder if domestic production of the 30mm ammunition plus superior protection levels might yet get it over the line. IIRC there was some mention of the Ph 3 vehicle needing comparable protection levels to the Abrams. Now while that may be a tad ambitious for either candidate, it speaks to the emphasis placed on that particular category.

    EDIT: According to DTR, the MSV variant is now out due largely to the purchase of M1150 under Land 8160 Ph1, and an Armoured Mortar vehicle (AMV), Mortar Ammunition Vehicle (MAV) and Armoured Logistics Vehicle (ALV) are now in.

  8. An update from earlier:

    "Pratt & Whitney has received a contract from the F-35 Joint Program Office to carry out the F135 modernisation study and operational assessment.

    The assessment is expected to determine the requirements for the propulsion system growth for Block 4.2 F-35 aircraft and later models.

    As per the $1.5m contract, the study will be completed in March.

    Pratt & Whitney Military Engines president Matthew Bromberg said: “This award is a significant milestone for the programme and the warfighter, as we look to ensure the F135 propulsion system continues to provide the foundation for all air vehicle capability requirements over the full lifecycle of the F-35.

    “As we look to the future, growth in aircraft capability must be met with matched propulsion modernization. Fortunately, the F135 has ample design margin to support agile and affordable upgrades that will enable all F-35 operators to keep pace with evolving threat environments.”

    The company will carry out the assessment for the F135 engine enhancements that are needed for the weapon system capability requirements of the future for all the F-35 variants.

    The evaluation will focus on enhancements to boost powered lift thrust, the up and away thrust, power and thermal management capacity and fuel burn reduction.

    In a statement, Pratt & Whitney said: “Designed with the knowledge that operational environments will evolve and threats will advance, the F135 is postured to meet future F-35 capability requirements.”


  9. On 10/5/2020 at 5:06 AM, Must Be Spoon Fed said:

    *Trademark drivel*

    You came here pushing a tired & long-since debunked narrative on a topic you admit to having a poor understanding of, spammed the thread with crappy links to APA and POGO, and have now doubled down on the absolute nonsense with War is Boring and Foxtrot Alpha (after I warned you about them no less).


    Your comments about the Sidekick mod clearly demonstrate your ignorance, since there is nothing unusual about a 4 x AAM loadout, especially for a mid-sized, stealthy (ref FC-31) multirole fighter that needs fewer weapons to achieve its kills. By way of example, the F35's that ripped through the modern IADS at Red Flag 2017 did so with a max of just 2 AMRAAMs each due to the limitations of their early Block 3i software load. Releasing incremental tranches of additional capability - like the growth to 6 internal AAMs - has been standard practice in all new combat aircraft for many decades.


    Meanwhile, the fact that you had the audacity (and mind-boggling hypocrisy) to turn your nose up at the plethora of (vastly superior) other sources you were gifted is farcical. Literally none of them "lead to nowhere" and all of them address precisely what was claimed in the context of the relevant arguments - none of which you provided a cogent rebuttal to or demonstrated even a basic understanding of. Your inability to grasp the comparison between VLO and TVC as an example of the flawed weighting system in the ZOCT is a good case in point, as is your bizarre and inept response to the Hornet/Flanker BFM video. I was particularly entertained by your own-goal of a link about a rookie F35 unit that out performed highly experienced, air-to-air specialist F15 crews in Japan during BFM drills.


    The sources you try to dismiss as "tabloids" are direct quotes from actual fighter pilots with relevant experience and input on the exact matter(s) being discussed (apparently this is only a problem for you when you don't think they suit your narrative). Again, given the fact that most of the relevant data on the F35's kinematic performance is classified, I will take their input along with that of the other service members I have spoken to (from various air forces) over yours every. single. time.


    The earlier gripe about me not adequately "quoting" APA is hilarious, because the source material in question (the APA ZOCT table you posted upthread) is literally the first thing I referenced in my rebuttal to it. It is also... just a table, and high school Science class will tell you that one does not "quote" a table. In reality, I clearly laid out my rebuttal in massive, bolded bullet points (can't make it much easier for you than that). All you had to do was refer to your own bloody source while reading it(!). That you have been either too inept or too obstinate to grasp any of the above is, frankly, not my problem.


    If you want more information you can find it yourself - I am done spoon feeding you for free (apparently you need me to "chew" for you now too) and I doubt anyone else here has the patience either. Frankly, I think mine has been saintly up to this point, but it has well and truly run out. 

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