Skip to comments.Air Force budget proposal would replace jets at Arkansas base with drones squadron
Posted on 02/15/2012 6:33:05 AM PST by FourPeas
FORT SMITH, Ark. A plan by Air Force officials would remove the A-10 aircraft mission from the 188th Fighter Wing in Fort Smith next year and possibly replace it with one involving remotely piloted aircraft.
The proposal released by Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Norton Schwartz on Friday would give the 188th Fighter Wing an MQ-1/9 Remote Split Operations Squadron that would be made up of unmanned aerial vehicles commonly referred to as drones.
The MQ-1 and MQ-9 wouldn't be assigned to the base, only a ground control operation station from which the unmanned aircraft are operated.
"Sometimes the devil is in the details. But the majority of predator (drone) missions don't come with the type of manning associated with a fighter wing," Wear told the Southwest Times Record.
There are almost 500 personnel in the 188th's maintenance group and the drones typically don't carry any type of maintenance group that is comparable to that, he said.
The Air Force announced in October that bases in Arizona, Hawaii and South Carolina were candidates for an MQ-1/9 RSO squadron, noting that it would include 280 personnel.
Besides the 188th, the Air Force is recommending removing A-10 missions from the 122nd Fighter Wing at Fort Wayne, Ind., 107th Fighter Squadron at the Selfridge Air National Guard Base in Harrison Township, Mich., 917th Fighter Wing at Barksdale Air Force Base, La., and an unidentified overseas location.
(Excerpt) Read more at therepublic.com ...
Why is the Air Force pulling A-10 squadrons? THey are the best Close Air Support going!
maybe they can pull the drone in the Whitehouse too.
In the long run, combat planes will be replaced by drones because microchips can take g-forces that would incapacitate (or even kill) a human pilot.
considering the chinese were able to take over and ground one of our spy drones... what’s the worst that could happen...
Because they are not go fast look cool fighter planes.
Tank busting just ain't all that glamorous when you need war stories to help you get laid.
If the military is going to use drones they need places in America to train with them.
Does this mean that all the honky-tonk honeys will now have to beat on drone-drivers for a cold one?
“The MQ-1 and MQ-9 wouldn’t be assigned to the base, only a ground control operation station from which the unmanned aircraft are operated.”
Might help if you read the article before you post and comment on it.
Yes, and this article clearly states there won’t even be any drones at the base. Just the ground control station.
Steve Chealander member of the NTSB 2007-2009 is a retired American Captain. He gave a safety presentation at recurrent training about two years ago. He opened the floor for questions and one guy asked facetiously when are we going to one pilot cockpit?
Chealander said that is not funny. He said Fed Ex and UPS are now, (two years ago), working on the procedures for a one-pilot long haul over-water operation. The pilot would be at the controls for takeoff and landing then go to the bunk for cruise while the guy back in Memphis would take over for the cruise. One pilot passenger flights will take a bit longer to get approved.
Twelve years ago, I was Director of Operations for the Alaska Air Guard. I went to a high-level conference and this three-star General gave a presentation that said the exact same thing the major said. The only limitation on fighter aircraft now is the pilot. We have the technology to do everything from the ground and it will be a huge cost savings. No search and rescue, no life support systems, no backlash when we lose a plane. So this article is right on the money.
I attended a flight safety presentation last evening from a retired AF Major test pilot from Edwards, Bill Koukourikas, now serving there as a civilian. During the course of his presentation, his statement, "No future attack military aircraft within the next 15 years will have pilots in the cockpit. The last tactical aircraft with a pilot in the cockpit will be the F-35."
He also indicated that, within the next 10 or so years, all UPS and FedEx cargo flights will be with pilot-less aircraft. This prediction comes from their test shop at Edwards. All drone testing, development, etc., is taking place just south of Edwards in the Palmdale area. Sounds like a continuation of the Skunk Works developments of Lockheed which previously took place in that area."
The world is changing quickly. I feel the need, the need for a more comfortable arm chair.
Actually I not only read this article, I read half a dozen other articles on the same subject looking for one that I could both post on FR and had the most relevant details. Whereas this article states that none will be assigned there, several of the articles report the details are unclear.
Well, sorry if I was a little harsh. I think we’ve all gotten annoyed at posters who seem to just see a headline and go off on a rant that seems unfounded, so sorry if I lumped you in with those guys.