If we had just kept the F-22 production line funded...

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ladajo
Posts: 6204
Joined: Thu Sep 17, 2009 11:18 pm
Location: North East Coast

Re: If we had just kept the F-22 production line funded...

Post by ladajo »

Just know that anything I say I don't do it in anger. :)

More sea stories when the time and place feels right.
The development of atomic power, though it could confer unimaginable blessings on mankind, is something that is dreaded by the owners of coal mines and oil wells. (Hazlitt)
What I want to do is to look up C. . . . I call him the Forgotten Man. (Sumner)

ltgbrown
Posts: 176
Joined: Mon Jun 22, 2009 11:15 am
Location: Belgium

Re: If we had just kept the F-22 production line funded...

Post by ltgbrown »

I have one.

In 1998 I was in the Persian Gulf when the largest darn thunderstorm I have ever seen moved from Iran out over the water. Normally, not that big a deal except it was nightime, I was flying, and the storm parked itself over the carrier. They cancelled the next launch and diverted everyone to Kuwait except for my plane (a Hawkeye with 5 people onboard, including my Skipper in the back) and an S-3. The S-3 and I found a hole in the clouds caused by a 500 foot high flame from one of the gazillion oil platforms in the gulf. That flame is famous for always being there and always being unbelievably huge. So huge, it created this nice bubble of clear air for the two of us to circle around opposite each other for over an hour waiting for the next recovery.

When it came time to push to the carrier, it was about the darkest I had ever seen (the darkest is another story!); except for the moments of complete illumination caused by the lightening. We dropped down to 1200 feet and proceeded into the carrier. Being below a thunderstorm, you can imagine the turbulence. It was so bad, that all three NFOs, including my Skipper, got airsick. My Skipper even suggested that if I wanted to divert, we could. Being a good arrogant Naval Aviator, I looked at it more as a chance to test my piloting skills than a stupidly insane thing to do. As we proceeded inbound, we flew past numerous other oil platforms burning off gas (no where near the size of the "big flame" though), causing a surreal environment of near total darkness with small flames passing by the plane as we proceeded inbound; with the occasional slam of air turbulence every 3-10 seconds. We called the ball at 3/4 of mile (visibility was actually quite good as there was no rain) and immediately went from a ball high to a ball low to a ball high again. The wind over the deck was changing by 30-50 knots in seconds as I continued the approach. But that was not the best part. As we got closer, the lightening intensified. At a mile, just before calling the ball, the copilot and I could start to make out things on the flight deck from the flashes of lightening. Normally, all you can see is the landing area lights and the ball (visual landing aid that gives glideslope information. looks like a ball in between (hopefully) two horizontal lines. Two balls high is dangerously high. Two balls low and you can kill yourself (or in my case, myself and four others)). On this approach though, I could see tractors, tow bars, planes, and people moving all over the flight deck in little snap shots like from a dance club. I never realized the landing area was so full of stuff while I was trying to land on it until that night.

The ball moved up and down of its seemingly own volition. I repeatedly hit the stops as I slammed the power levers all way up and all the back to flight idle. I used every trick in the book to keep the ball just on the lens, much less in the center. Trying to keep the plane on speed was even more difficult as the gusts seemed to only get stronger as we came closer to the back of the ship. Finally, the planed slammed into the deck with the ball somewhere near the center but coming down fast and we came to stop. Going from the violence of the landing to relative calmness of taxiing on the stable flight deck was a little unnerving. My legs (which shook after all of my 300+ night landings) were shaking extra hard and I had to concentrate on controlling the brakes as we taxied around the flightdeck with our whirling vegetable cutters in the windy conditions, surrounded by hundreds of 18-22 year old sailors standing on a metal flight deck in the middle of the Persian Gulf under one of the most intense thunderstorms I have ever seen. Once we shut down and got out of the plane, the usual 5-10 minute post flight inspection and conversation with the maintenance guys turned into a 30 second walk around and run for the nearest hatch to get below.

I and the S-3 were only the planes to get aboard. The others that tried went back to Kuwait, refueled, and waited for the storm to pass, coming back several hours later. It took several hours to come down off the adrenline rush. I got an OK 1 wire, the only OK 1 wire in my career. Lots of No Grade 1 wires, but only one OK 1 wire.

The other story some time later.
Famous last words, "Hey, watch this!"

Skipjack
Posts: 6079
Joined: Sun Sep 28, 2008 2:29 pm

Re: If we had just kept the F-22 production line funded...

Post by Skipjack »

Very cool story! Thanks for sharing! If I was Tom Clancy, I would put that (and ladajo's) into my next novel ;)

Skipjack
Posts: 6079
Joined: Sun Sep 28, 2008 2:29 pm

Re: If we had just kept the F-22 production line funded...

Post by Skipjack »

On the topic of the X47b, here is another report. More carrier tests and integration with manned aircraft operations:
http://www.gizmag.com/x-47b-manned-airc ... ion/31919/

ladajo
Posts: 6204
Joined: Thu Sep 17, 2009 11:18 pm
Location: North East Coast

Re: If we had just kept the F-22 production line funded...

Post by ladajo »

Nice Pucker story Glenn. Sometimes it is pure will...
The development of atomic power, though it could confer unimaginable blessings on mankind, is something that is dreaded by the owners of coal mines and oil wells. (Hazlitt)
What I want to do is to look up C. . . . I call him the Forgotten Man. (Sumner)

GIThruster
Posts: 4686
Joined: Tue May 25, 2010 8:17 pm

Re: If we had just kept the F-22 production line funded...

Post by GIThruster »

Okay, so who can watch the vid and not think this thing is cool?

"Ironhorse"

http://gizmodo.com/the-new-king-of-high ... 1574031173
"Courage is not just a virtue, but the form of every virtue at the testing point." C. S. Lewis

Skipjack
Posts: 6079
Joined: Sun Sep 28, 2008 2:29 pm

Re: If we had just kept the F-22 production line funded...

Post by Skipjack »

Very cool, but I think you wanted to post this in this thread:
viewtopic.php?f=8&t=5384

Skipjack
Posts: 6079
Joined: Sun Sep 28, 2008 2:29 pm

Re: If we had just kept the F-22 production line funded...

Post by Skipjack »

In the context of drones, there seems to be a half step from manned aircraft to UAV:
http://www.wired.com/2014/04/dangerroom_0422_autopilot/

GIThruster
Posts: 4686
Joined: Tue May 25, 2010 8:17 pm

Re: If we had just kept the F-22 production line funded...

Post by GIThruster »

Skynet here we come. . .or worse. When you don't have to have a concern whether your forces will follow an illegal or otherwise outrageous order, where is the safety net?

And what happens when this sort of technology makes itself into Pakistani, or North Korean, or Iranian hands?
"Courage is not just a virtue, but the form of every virtue at the testing point." C. S. Lewis

ladajo
Posts: 6204
Joined: Thu Sep 17, 2009 11:18 pm
Location: North East Coast

Re: If we had just kept the F-22 production line funded...

Post by ladajo »

And what happens when this sort of technology makes itself into Pakistani, or North Korean, or Iranian hands?
This is the "Technology Proliferation Paradox".
As we make cooler stuff, it becomes easier and cheaper for those who are not up to speed to get things we may not want them to have.
A corrollary is the concept that they will get a percentage of capability.
It puts us in a position where we feel we need to accellerate and open the capabilities gap to maintain an edge, but in turn this activity improves the access to technology for those we build against.
The development of atomic power, though it could confer unimaginable blessings on mankind, is something that is dreaded by the owners of coal mines and oil wells. (Hazlitt)
What I want to do is to look up C. . . . I call him the Forgotten Man. (Sumner)

Skipjack
Posts: 6079
Joined: Sun Sep 28, 2008 2:29 pm

Re: If we had just kept the F-22 production line funded...

Post by Skipjack »


MSimon
Posts: 14332
Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 7:37 pm
Location: Rockford, Illinois
Contact:

Re: If we had just kept the F-22 production line funded...

Post by MSimon »

ladajo wrote:
And what happens when this sort of technology makes itself into Pakistani, or North Korean, or Iranian hands?
This is the "Technology Proliferation Paradox".
As we make cooler stuff, it becomes easier and cheaper for those who are not up to speed to get things we may not want them to have.
A corrollary is the concept that they will get a percentage of capability.
It puts us in a position where we feel we need to accellerate and open the capabilities gap to maintain an edge, but in turn this activity improves the access to technology for those we build against.
The faster you run the harder it is to stay ahead.
Engineering is the art of making what you want from what you can get at a profit.

DeltaV
Posts: 2245
Joined: Mon Oct 12, 2009 5:05 am

Re: If we had just kept the F-22 production line funded...

Post by DeltaV »

Chinese Stealth Fighter J-20 Starts Production
http://www.popsci.com/chinese-stealth-f ... production
In a Christmas gift for Chinese fighter pilots, December 25th saw the unveiling of a new J-20 fighter in fresh yellow fuselage primer on the runway of the Chengdu Aviation Corporation (CAC) factory. More notable than its paint color, however, was the numbering of the plane: "2101." As opposed to "2018" or "2019" to follow the eighth flying prototype "2017," "2101" suggests the plane is the first of the low rate initial production (LRIP) airframes, which signify the move away from prototype production to building fighters for actual military use.

LRIP is the stage in the program where CAC will build enough production fighters (about 12-24) for test and evaluation flights by the PLAAF to understand the J-20's capabilities, before further committing to large-scale production. Initial operational capability should come around in the 2018-2019 timeframe, once the Chinese Test Flight Establishment (CTFE) regiment develops the technical proficiency and competence to use the J-20 to the fullest in combat operations.
Raptor Resurrected: What Will it Take to Restart F-22 Fighter Production?
http://nationalinterest.org/blog/the-bu ... hter-15862
Indeed, the production tooling could be a serious problem. While Lockheed and the Air Force supposedly made every effort to carefully squirrel away the tooling and instructions for building the F-22, problems have emerged when maintenance crews have attempted to pull the equipment in order to repair damaged jets. One recently retired Air Force official with direct knowledge about the service’s efforts to repair two damaged Raptors said that they faced severe difficulties with retrieving the correct tooling.

In one example, Air Force maintainers needed to build a particular component from scratch to replace a severely damaged part for an F-22. The crews went into the Conex boxes where the tooling and instructions to build the part were allegedly stored, but to their considerable surprise and aggravation, the container was empty. The same pattern repeated itself several times—and as of the last time the source checked–the issue has not been completely resolved. The bottom line is that even if the Air Force wanted to, it may not be physically possible to restart the line—at least not without a huge additional investment in time and money.
H.R. 4909—FY17 NATIONAL DEFENSE AUTHORIZATION BILL
SUBCOMMITTEE ON TACTICAL AIR AND LAND FORCES

http://docs.house.gov/meetings/AS/AS25/ ... 4909ih.pdf
AIRCRAFT PROCUREMENT, AIR FORCE

Items of Special Interest

F-22 production restart assessment

The committee notes that production of the F-22 fifth-generation tactical
aircraft concluded in 2009, and notes 187 aircraft were produced, far short of the
initial program objective of 749 aircraft, as well as the Air Combat Command’s
stated requirement of 381 aircraft. The committee also understands there has been
interest within the Department of the Air Force, Department of Defense, and
Congress in potentially restarting production of the F-22 aircraft. In light of
growing threats to U.S. air superiority as a result of adversaries closing the
technology gap and increasing demand from allies and partners for highperformance,
multi-role aircraft to meet evolving and worsening global security
threats, the committee believes that such proposals are worthy of further
exploration.
Therefore, the committee directs the Secretary of the Air Force to conduct a
comprehensive assessment and study of the costs associated with resuming
production of F-22 aircraft and provide a report to the congressional defense
committees, not later than January 1, 2017, on the findings of this assessment.

Sigh.

choff
Posts: 2438
Joined: Thu Nov 08, 2007 5:02 am
Location: Vancouver, Canada

Re: If we had just kept the F-22 production line funded...

Post by choff »

There's a new problem with the F35. :D

http://www.msn.com/en-ca/video/news/the ... vi-BBv9IUC
CHoff

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