Skip to comments.Why Australia should scratch the F-35 and fly Sukhois
Posted on 04/26/2013 5:39:24 AM PDT by PotatoHeadMick
The F-35 Lighting was the first choice of the Australian air force. But several thunderbolts have struck the stealth aircraft, including the arrival of new generation Sukhois that are skewing the odds against the Australians.
Sometime by the middle of this year, Australia will have to make a stark choice. Its defences vulnerable and budget in tatters, the country will announce whether it will buy another squadron of 24 F-18 Super Hornets, or that Australia will stick with the original plan to buy 100 units of the F-35 Lightning Americas joint strike fighter.
Trouble is neither option adds to the countrys security.
(Excerpt) Read more at rbth.asia ...
Here is an old article that makes an interesting case for the Su-27 over the F/A-18:
to ask about sukhois, ask the expert, I’ve pinged him!
Even if Sukhoi was the superior plane, it doesn’t make sense to buy a plane that needs spare parts etc from a country that is not an ally and is a rival of SEATO.
The article says that spare Sukhoi parts are “open source” ie can be purchased from several countries, including Israel, whereas the US-built aircraft, due to technology limitations, will have to be sent to the US or depend on US technicians being flown in.
Not sure you want Russian technicians coming in, last time they drank themselves to death on bootleg liquor.
If Australia wanted to ditch the F-35, they would buy more SuperHornets.
Considering the world instability, I would be buying as many as I could. They are probably gonna need them.
Many services and nations in the Western world are looking at unfortunate options.
The F-35’s teething problems may be mild compared to possibly flawed fundamental assumptions: I worry about the total reliance on stealth.
First of all, to get the airplane in a mode to go anywhere or destroy anything you have to hang fuel tanks and ordnance from the wings, which throws stealth out the window. So what do you have then? Is the F-35 a great fighter aircraft that can hold its own with the possible adversaries?
There seems to be some debate on the subject.
Furthermore, I am seeing reports, which may or may not be wrong, that sensor technology currently in development could start to peel back the stealth cloak in as soon as 5-8 years. If that is true, this total emphasis on stealth over traditional performance could prove deadly for our aviators.
That brings us to the SuperHornet. By all accounts it is a dog in terms of performance compared to the F-15, Su-30 series and the Typhoon and Rafale. Hell, the F-14D could fly rings around it years ago. The main thing the Super Bug has going for it is its avionics package. But you can put those avionics in other airframes.
More and more allies are going to realize the combat radius and outright performance limitations of the F/A-18E/F and look elsewhere.
It was a horrible development when the SuperBug was forced upon the US Navy by default and it has implications across continents.
They should look into getting Sukhoi TA-50 airframes, and putting western avionics, and possibly western engines on them. Probably end up with a better fighter, at a cheaper price.
The question is whether the Aussies will be able to get spare parts if it gets into a conflict with China. Given Russia’s semi-alliance with China...
The F-35 doesn't totally rely on stealth technology.
to get the airplane in a mode to go anywhere or destroy anything you have to hang fuel tanks and ordnance from the wings, which throws stealth out the window.
The internal weapons bays and tanks tell a different story. Once air superiority is achieved then one can start hanging pylons and by that time the SEAD mission is largely already over rendering any advantage gained from stealth moot.
that sensor technology currently in development could start to peel back the stealth cloak in as soon as 5-8 years.
The "stealth cloak" never really existed outside of the zoomie punchbowl. Stealth platforms have always been detectable using low band RADAR; datalinking it to a high frequency fire control platform is the trick. However, if one arrogantly refuses to alter ones tactics, that exercise becomes for all intents and purposes unnecessary, re the F-117 shootdown over Kosovo on 27 March 1999.
the SuperBug was forced upon the US Navy by default
Revisionist history. NAVAIR had a fetish for the Super Hornet from the get go. They gleefully lied to Congress that there would only be minor differences between it and the Hornet and they sat on their thumbs and let Cheney kill the Tomcat.
Honestly, a wet dream more than anything else!!
On the F-35 - I am linking two reports given to the Australian Parliamentary Joint Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade. This is a government committee that was fielding questions and responses from interested parties regarding Australia's planned purchase of the F-35. There are two reports.
The first I am linking has individuals working for Lockheed Martin, the manufacturer of the F-35. They are Air Commander (Retired) Graham Bentley (Director; International Business Development Australia, Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company); Tom Burbage (Executive VP and General Manager, F-35 Program Integration, Lockheed Martin); Gary Liberson (Technical Lead Operations Analysis, Strategic Studies Group, Lockheed Martin); and Bradley McCoy (F-22 and F-35 Strategic Analysis, Lockheed Martin). These are the guys who are presenting a pro F-35 perspective.
The second link is from people who present the 'other side' of the coin. There is Michael Price (Managing Director, RepSim ltd). Price was director of the explosive ordnance in the Australian Department of Defence, where he designed, constructed and managed the process in which the DoD came up with official war scenarios and simulations to look at contemporary and future conflicts the Australian Defence Forces might face. He also produced a classified report on the ability of the F-35 to meet the requirements of the Aussies as advised by the Chiefs of Staff Committee. Then there is Christopher Mills (Director RepSim), and Adrian Long (Director RepSim). They describe the work RepSim does for Australian defence. Then there are two gents a number of people here know about - Peter Goon and Dr Carlo Kopp. The two work at Air Power Australia, and they are those type of people that one either likes or hates (although I am yet to see something written about them in the negative that goes beyond 'they are kooks' ...I am most willing to see a writeup discrediting what they say rather than focusing solely on how they are 'stupid').
Whatever it takes for more aircraft to go head to head with the projected capabilities of a possible China confrontation to even a full scale invasion upon Australia.
The Chinese can build lots of aircraft, disposable aircraft and crew to them because that is their logic.
Look at how long the Eurofighter has been in service, and it's just now getting it's ground attack capabilities.
One thing about a Hornet. It has lots of combat experience.
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