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Textron Scorpion new budget friendly fighter.

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  • Operator
    replied
    And now: http://www.businessinsider.com/air-f...ahoo?r=UK&IR=T

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  • Stitch
    replied
    Quoted from The Aviationist:

    "NATO runs short on some munitions in Libya
    By Karen DeYoung and Greg Jaffe, Friday, April 15, 8:46 PM

    Less than a month into the Libyan conflict, NATO is running short of precision bombs, highlighting the limitations of Britain, France and other European countries in sustaining even a relatively small military action over an extended period of time, according to senior NATO and U.S. officials.

    The shortage of European munitions, along with the limited number of aircraft available, has raised doubts among some officials about whether the United States can continue to avoid returning to the air campaign if Libyan leader Moammar Gaddafi hangs on to power for several more months.

    But, they said, the current bombing rate by the participating nations is not sustainable. “The reason we need more capability isn’t because we aren’t hitting what we see — it’s so that we can sustain the ability to do so. One problem is flight time, the other is munitions,” said another official, one of several who were not authorized to discuss the issue on the record.

    European arsenals of laser-guided bombs, the NATO weapon of choice in the Libyan campaign, have been quickly depleted, officials said. Although the United States has significant stockpiles, its munitions do not fit on the British- and French-made planes that have flown the bulk of the missions.

    Britain and France have each contributed about 20 strike aircraft to the campaign. Belgium, Norway, Denmark and Canada have each contributed six — all of them U.S.-manufactured and compatible with U.S. weaponry.

    Concerns that supplies of jet-launched precision bombs are growing short in Europe have reignited long-standing controversies over both burden-sharing and compatibility within NATO. While allied jets have largely followed the U.S. lead and converted to precision munitions over the last decade, they have struggled to keep pace, according to senior U.S. military officials.

    Libya “has not been a very big war. If [the Europeans] would run out of these munitions this early in such a small operation, you have to wonder what kind of war they were planning on fighting,” said John Pike, director of GlobalSecurity.org, a defense think tank. “Maybe they were just planning on using their air force for air shows.”

    Despite U.S. badgering, European allies have been slow in some cases to modify their planes and other weapons systems so they can accommodate U.S. bombs. Retooling these fighter jets so that they are compatible with U.S. systems requires money, and all European militaries have faced significant cuts in recent years.

    Typically, the British and French militaries buy munitions in batches and stockpile them. When arsenals start to run low, factories must be retooled and production lines restarted to replace the diminished stock, all of which can take time and additional money, said Elizabeth Quintana, an aerospace analyst at the Royal United Service Institute in London.

    deyoungk@washpost.com

    jaffeg@washpost.com

    Correspondent Simon Denyer in Tripoli contributed to this report.

    I don’t know which countries are already short of LGBs but most probably among those actively involved in the air strike some might be nearing the end of their stocks. The RDAF alone (one of the most active contingents in Unified Protector) has dropped more than 200 PGMs. If we consider that orders for (quite expensive) ordnance are usually placed by European countries for a few hundred bombs at one time or for quantities lower than 1.000 pieces (as, fortunately, LGBs are not used very often in peacetime), those that are involved in both Afghanistan from some years and now in Libya might be in the need to replenish their stocks in the future, but most probably not yet after just 28 days of operations.

    Noteworthy, the article underlines that European air forces should modify their planes to accommodate US bombs even if in most (if not all) cases, US and NATO PGMs (both LGBs and GPS-guided bombs) can be attached to the standard pylons and rails without the need of any modification. For sure there are some weapons that were “locally-developed” and don’t fit with standard bomb racks or suspension lugs but the large majority of the ordnance carried by the aircraft is “NATO standard”, as the extensive use of GBU-12s (described in the previous reports) and GBU-38s shows."

    http://theaviationist.com/2011/04/17...lained-day-29/
    Last edited by Stitch; 19 Mar 15,, 18:37.

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  • Jimmy
    replied
    As NATO stockpiles ran low, the US took over many of the strikes that would have otherwise been flown by other NATO partners. If you want to pretend that running dangerously low on munitions less than two weeks into a limited air campaign isn't a symptom of a Very Big Problem, I don't even know what to tell you. Nitpicking over how they (mostly) avoided being mocked publicly for it dodges the issue.

    As far as the US running low on small arms ammunition, we burned through billions of rounds that had been stockpiled. And at least some of what we got from Europe was our own stocks that were there.
    Last edited by Jimmy; 19 Mar 15,, 05:04.

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  • kato
    replied
    Umm. The US didn't supply any bombs to European allies in Odyssey Dawn.

    Most of the involved countries did not - and do not - have US guided bomb models integrated on their aircraft; or rather: guided bomb models that the US was willing to provide at the time. These countries instead got a gracious offer from Germany for free supply in case their supplies would run out (they didn't, they just ran a bit thin near the end). The two countries involved that used US aircraft (i.e. Denmark and Norway) ordered additional stocks during the bombing campaign through NATO's NMSA (which procures such articles for its members from the commercial market), just like everyone else would do it.

    If you want to play that game, the US got various European countries to provide the US Army with small arms ammunition (for free, no less) during the Iraq invasion. Because apparently the US Army was incapable of procuring and managing a proper stockpile for such occasions. Kind like buying a cheap gun and no bullets for it.

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  • Stitch
    replied
    Originally posted by kato View Post
    What OoE was presumably saying above is that a country that will penny-pinch buying such a platform will not spend millions buying PGM to launch from it.

    The PGM guidance ability is mostly something fluffy anyway - in case the USAF wants to buy it for some... uh... tertiary role. Outside the limited scope of NATO AFs the use case for PGM is highly limited at the moment, and within NATO the aircraft is pretty much not up to the competition cost-wise (not when you can lease more capable Gripens for 20 years at around the same per-unit price).

    The place where Textron arguably has a chance to actually sell the Scorpion is in replacement for third-generation fighters for Air Forces in countries with a COIN/light strike military focus who want something multi-role that they can use on top of their actual COIN aircraft. That's provided you can slap a couple AIM-9X under its wings, preferably also some midrange AAM that's not an AIM-120. Colombia's and Ecuador's Kfirs and Cheetahs come to mind in particular as potential.
    One of the things that I wasn't really aware of until recently was how few smart munitions the Europeans stockpiled; they'll spend millions (sometimes billions) of dollars (or, in this case, Euros) for modern, 4th-gen aircraft, yet they have hardly any smart munitions stockpiled. IIRC, the European nations who assisted us with Odyssey Dawn quickly ran out of smart munitions, and the US had to supply them with their pre-positioned stockpiles of smart munitions. It's kind of like buying a very expensive gun, but no bullets for it.

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  • Skywatcher
    replied
    Originally posted by kato View Post
    What OoE was presumably saying above is that a country that will penny-pinch buying such a platform will not spend millions buying PGM to launch from it.

    The PGM guidance ability is mostly something fluffy anyway - in case the USAF wants to buy it for some... uh... tertiary role. Outside the limited scope of NATO AFs the use case for PGM is highly limited at the moment, and within NATO the aircraft is pretty much not up to the competition cost-wise (not when you can lease more capable Gripens for 20 years at around the same per-unit price).

    The place where Textron arguably has a chance to actually sell the Scorpion is in replacement for third-generation fighters for Air Forces in countries with a COIN/light strike military focus who want something multi-role that they can use on top of their actual COIN aircraft. That's provided you can slap a couple AIM-9X under its wings, preferably also some midrange AAM that's not an AIM-120. Colombia's and Ecuador's Kfirs and Cheetahs come to mind in particular as potential.
    Aren't the Emirates interested in the Scorpion? (Though apparently not enough to jump on as the first customer)

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  • zraver
    replied
    Originally posted by bonehead View Post
    If I wanted a "cheap fighter" I would be looking at the F-20 if it were available. I can see the scorpion following the same road as the F-20. No one really wants a second tier airframe. Like others, I just don't see the scorpion as a CAS. What can this do that an A-10 or an attack helicopter cant do. What am I missing here?
    Be sold to foreign customers. The A-10 can do anything the Scorpion can do, and do it on an antique air frame. However, the A-10 is not in production anymore. For nations needing a cheap strike/CAS/survelliance platform to operate in a low threat environment or as part of a hi/lo mix of technologies this would not be a bad choice.

    Compared to helicopters, it is 4-6x faster, carries more weight, has a longer range can fight above the level of manpads and drop bombs not just fire rockets, cannons and missies.

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  • bonehead
    replied
    If I wanted a "cheap fighter" I would be looking at the F-20 if it were available. I can see the scorpion following the same road as the F-20. No one really wants a second tier airframe. Like others, I just don't see the scorpion as a CAS. What can this do that an A-10 or an attack helicopter cant do. What am I missing here?

    Leave a comment:


  • kato
    replied
    What OoE was presumably saying above is that a country that will penny-pinch buying such a platform will not spend millions buying PGM to launch from it.

    The PGM guidance ability is mostly something fluffy anyway - in case the USAF wants to buy it for some... uh... tertiary role. Outside the limited scope of NATO AFs the use case for PGM is highly limited at the moment, and within NATO the aircraft is pretty much not up to the competition cost-wise (not when you can lease more capable Gripens for 20 years at around the same per-unit price).

    The place where Textron arguably has a chance to actually sell the Scorpion is in replacement for third-generation fighters for Air Forces in countries with a COIN/light strike military focus who want something multi-role that they can use on top of their actual COIN aircraft. That's provided you can slap a couple AIM-9X under its wings, preferably also some midrange AAM that's not an AIM-120. Colombia's and Ecuador's Kfirs and Cheetahs come to mind in particular as potential.

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  • Versus
    replied
    Now,that is the picture.

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  • zraver
    replied
    Originally posted by Officer of Engineers View Post
    You seriously think that anyone buying this bargin-basement jalopy can afford PGMs.

    I hazzard to guess a single PGM is worth more than this japlopy.
    Sir its built to carry laser guided bombs, and missiles like mavericks, stingers and hellfires. It the attached pic you can see the sensor pod under the nose. Recently a national guard unit did a demonstration with it as a surveillance platform where the Scorpion provided hours of real time full color and FLIR data. Off the shelf mean cheap not junk.
    Attached Files

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  • Versus
    replied
    Originally posted by zraver View Post
    Its not a CAS platform but a light strike/survelliance platform for developing nations whose foes won't possess advanced ADA capabilities. If it can mount PGM's it can operate above manpad/light cannon range.
    Maybe,but I would use it more as recon/surveillance, it fits more for that role. Lots of stuff can be placed in that wide fuselage. Loiter time seems to be its biggest advantage. But why the title says that it is a budget fighter?

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  • Officer of Engineers
    replied
    Originally posted by zraver View Post
    Its not a CAS platform but a light strike/survelliance platform for developing nations whose foes won't possess advanced ADA capabilities. If it can mount PGM's it can operate above manpad/light cannon range.
    You seriously think that anyone buying this bargin-basement jalopy can afford PGMs.

    I hazzard to guess a single PGM is worth more than this japlopy.

    Leave a comment:


  • zraver
    replied
    Originally posted by Versus View Post
    Agreed. It would have a nice loitering time, with that flat bottom and semi lifting body design, it could help with lift if those high aspect wings get damaged. Other than that, I think that they could do better than this.
    Its not a CAS platform but a light strike/survelliance platform for developing nations whose foes won't possess advanced ADA capabilities. If it can mount PGM's it can operate above manpad/light cannon range.

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  • Versus
    replied
    Originally posted by Stitch View Post
    Or an Su-14 Tomfoot . . .

    The widely-spaced engines make sense from a damage-control standpoint but, other than that, the airframe doesn't look very survivable; I seriously doubt that the cockpit has any kind of armor plating, and I'm guessing that it's a simple two-spar wing, instead of a more robust (and redundant) three-spar design, like on the A-10.
    Agreed. It would have a nice loitering time, with that flat bottom and semi lifting body design, it could help with lift if those high aspect wings get damaged. Other than that, I think that they could do better than this.

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