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New, Light A-10 Candidate? Scaled Composites Design "401 Jet"

Posted on 04/11/2018 4:20:05 PM PDT by gaijin

The new JT15D-5 turbofan-powered "401 Jet" of Burt Rutan's Scaled Composites in Mojave, Calif is a small, stealthy, single-engine jet variation on the very novel, 30 year-old "Ares" light attack jet. Never having entered production, Ares was actually an acronym, standing for Agile Responsive Effective Support:

Experts note that the X401 would have piloted and drone versions, leading to speculation that the pair could work together synergistically in a "loyal wingman" arrangement, possibly with some form of laser or directed energy weapon occupying the weapons bay, partially visible in the landing flare photo below.

A 6-minute YouTube vid explains more about the X401 in the first comment below.


TOPICS: Free Republic; Unclassified; War on Terror
KEYWORDS: a10; aircraft; aviation; cas; dumbidea; fakereplacement; idiocy; stupidityparade; warthog
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1 posted on 04/11/2018 4:20:05 PM PDT by gaijin
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To: gaijin

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RciWmARtu84&pbjreload=10


2 posted on 04/11/2018 4:20:22 PM PDT by gaijin
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To: gaijin

It looks so fragile that if the pilot sneezed it’ll blow the wings off and eject the pilot.


3 posted on 04/11/2018 4:22:47 PM PDT by SkyDancer ( ~ Just Consider Me A Random Fact Generator ~ Eat Sleep Fly Repeat ~)
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To: gaijin

Looks like a drone.


4 posted on 04/11/2018 4:28:01 PM PDT by carriage_hill ( Life is simpler, when you plow around the stump.)
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To: SkyDancer

Great fan of Rutan and his aircraft, BUT, THAT is not a replacement for the A-10 either in terms of amount of firepower it can carry, nor in survivability. I doubt that thing will return when you know out an engine (oops, only 1) and half the airframe.


5 posted on 04/11/2018 4:28:32 PM PDT by AndyJackson
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To: SkyDancer

Rutan is a brilliant designer, and his composite craft are sturdier than they look.

But, I don’t see that replacing the A-10 in any wa , shape or form.


6 posted on 04/11/2018 4:29:31 PM PDT by BenLurkin (The above is not a statement of fact. It is either satire or opinion. Or both.)
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To: SkyDancer

That was my thought. The point of the A-10 is that it can take a huge amount of damage and still fly - and still inflict massive damage against enemy ground forces. I don’t want a composite A-10; I want a solid, durable one. I don’t want a high-tech replacement; I want a reliable, combat-ready replacement.

The best answer would be to build new airframes (approved modifications to the A-10 included) from the existing design. I don’t trust the establishment to design something better from scratch, not when they seem to go in the opposite direction every time. The real A-10 does its job. Let’s build more!


7 posted on 04/11/2018 4:30:51 PM PDT by Pollster1 ("Governments derive their just powers from the consent of the governed")
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To: gaijin

404


8 posted on 04/11/2018 4:31:21 PM PDT by butlerweave
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To: AndyJackson

A ground attack jet needs ARMOR, not stealth.

A large payload capacity is a must.

TWO engines is a must.


9 posted on 04/11/2018 4:32:34 PM PDT by Bobalu (12 diet Cokes and a fried chicken...)
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To: gaijin

How many rounds of 50 cal. can it absorb and still complete its mission?


10 posted on 04/11/2018 4:32:36 PM PDT by PAR35
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To: gaijin

This thing replaces an A10 in the same way that a Porshe 911 replaces a Caterpillar bulldozer.


11 posted on 04/11/2018 4:33:38 PM PDT by MrEdd (Caveat Emptor)
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To: gaijin

I’m not seeing a space for the gatling gun.


12 posted on 04/11/2018 4:34:40 PM PDT by DaxtonBrown
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To: gaijin
Too pretty. Not butt-ugly enough to be a serious friend to infantry.
13 posted on 04/11/2018 4:36:59 PM PDT by llevrok (DACA = Democrats Against Citizen Americans)
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To: SkyDancer

The A-10 was basically built around its 30mm Cannon. This aircraft could not possibly be armed with the GRU. A-10’s durability is unmatched. I have seen nothing that comes close to replacing it. I find it astonishing the “plans” (for the lack of the technical term) were destroyed and we cannot duplicate this aircraft.


14 posted on 04/11/2018 4:37:02 PM PDT by shanover (...To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them.-S.Adams)
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To: gaijin

The survivability probably goes like this:

A piloted sample arrives in the general target area with his 6 drone comrades. He sizes things up, then sends in his drone brethren to perform the actual attack.

Then he goes home with however many survive that attack.


15 posted on 04/11/2018 4:37:49 PM PDT by gaijin
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To: gaijin
Interesting bird - quite a bit of dihedral. Doubt very seriously that it is intended to have a cockpit in its final version.

The mistake that Scaled Composites made with the ARES was to try to interest the Air Force in CAS platforms: the AF is genetically opposed to CAS of any kind since Billy Mitchell walked the Earth.

Chances are that this bird is intended to become unmanned CAS which might be more palatable to the AF - or maybe even the army, should the Air Force continue to be stubborn.

16 posted on 04/11/2018 4:40:31 PM PDT by Chainmail (A simple rule of life: if you can be blamed, you're responsible.)
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To: Bobalu

Funny thing about the A-10. It’s principal designer was the infamous Col. John Boyd. Now Boyd his famous for his theories of maneuverability leading to the F16 and derivatively the F15 and F18 (though the latter two were heavier and less maneuverable than he believed you needed). So he was branded as an advanced fighter advocate in an Air Force that wanted to do strategic bombing. Then they asked for a good ground attack, direct support aircraft. He looked at what attributes were needed (firepower, survivability) and voila the A-10 a great airplane for its mission.


17 posted on 04/11/2018 4:43:34 PM PDT by AndyJackson
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To: gaijin

Well, if you just have to spend a bunch of money, that looks like a fun way to do it.


18 posted on 04/11/2018 4:50:20 PM PDT by Doctor DNA (This is not your grandfather's internet.)
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To: gaijin
Can it return to base with lots of holes in the fuselage and re-fuel and take off in a short time?

Does it make sounds guaranteed to send chills up the backside of the enemy?

19 posted on 04/11/2018 4:51:55 PM PDT by SuperLuminal (Where is another agitator for republicanism like Sam Adams when we need him?)
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To: DaxtonBrown

Rutan’s ARES, the predecessor to this aircraft:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zG9LlHcX8lg Turbofan Killer Bee: Rutan ARES “Mudfighter” for U.S. Army Close Air Support

“By the time construction started in 1986, the design had evolved to the current configuration: an asymmetric design with the engine inlet on the left side of the fuselage, a single Pratt and Whitney Canada JT15D-5 turbofan engine (same as in the Beechjet/T-1A Jayhawk), and a GAU-12/U 25mm gatling gun on the right side.”

http://stargazer2006.online.fr/aircraft/pages/ares.htm

Specs:
Wingspan: 35.0 ft. (10.67 m)
Length: 25.5 ft. (8.97 m)
Height: 10.8 ft. (3.0 m)
Wing Area: 191 sq. ft. (17.49 m²)
MTOW: 6,7 lbs.
Start mass: 2767 kg
Empty Weight: 3,6 lbs. (1,308 kg)
External/War Load: 900 lbs.
Internal Fuel: 2,2 lbs. / 333 U.S. Gallons
Stores Stations: 4
Internal Gun: 1 x 25mm GAU-12/U
Maximum speed: 763kph
Maximum speed @ SL: 305 Kts.
Maximum speed @ALT: 375 Kts.
Maximum cruise @ALT: 210 Kts.
Stall speed @ SL: 78 Kts.
Maximum Climb Rate @ SL: NA
Service Ceiling: NA
Tactical Radius, Internal Fuel: NA
Ferry Range, Internal Fuel: 1,15 n.m.
Maximum Range, External Tanks: NA
Wing Loading: 32.4 lbs./sq ft.
Power/Weight or Thrust/Weight: 0.48 to 1
Load Limits: 8G
Takeoff Distance: 1,5 ft.
Landing Distance: 2 ft.
Flyaway Cost: 1 to 5 Million USD
Armament: 1 x 25mm cannon, bombs or missiles


20 posted on 04/11/2018 4:53:45 PM PDT by BwanaNdege ("The church ... is not the master or the servant of the state, but the conscience" - Luther)
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