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F-18 Advanced Hornet

This is a discussion on F-18 Advanced Hornet within the Air Force & Aviation forum, part of the Global Defense & Military category; Originally Posted by John Fedup From the article, "The remarks also came a day after Robert Harward, a retired vice ...


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Old February 18th, 2017   #166
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From the article, "The remarks also came a day after Robert Harward, a retired vice admiral and former Navy SEAL who went on to become an executive at Lockheed, declined an offer to succeed Michael Flynn as national security adviser".

Surely Donald can't be this petty?😂
Somehow I'm reading that as "someone from the Navy turned down my job offer? Let's screw over the Navy by having them buy Super Hornets!"
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Old February 19th, 2017   #167
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Robert Harward wanted to pick his own team of staff around him, which is completly understandable.

Trump's should have been more forthcoming here.
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Old February 19th, 2017   #168
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Anyone notice how the Anti JSF club who previously talked down the F35's stealth are now jumping with joy at how the Super Hornet will have some stealth features. The ignorance is amazing.
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Old February 19th, 2017   #169
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The ignorance is not particularly surprising nor is the hypocrisy of the the anti-JSF herd. The media here provides a continuous flow of bovine fecal matter about the JSF and people feast on it. This is why we are going to waste scarce defence dollars on 18 unneeded SHs for political reasons.
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Old June 13th, 2017   #170
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The USN has approved funding for the Super Hornet Block III upgrade.
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The upgrades detailed in the Navy’s fiscal 2018 budget documents include “advanced network architecture” and “advanced cockpit displays,” which Boeing says are designed to take advantage of the future carrier air wing’s sophisticated sensor architecture. The Block III aircraft will have a large-area display for improved user interface, a more powerful computer called the Distributed Targeting Processor Network (DTPN), and a bigger data pipe for passing information known as Tactical Targeting Network Technology (TTNT), Gillian told Aviation Week in February. This advanced computing architecture ensures the Super Hornet, Growler and E-2D can talk to each other and pass critical threat data over the same network in combat.

In addition, the fiscal 2018 budget also funds Conformal Fuel Tanks (CFT), which Gillian says will extend range by 100-120 nm. Crucially, the CFTs are designed to replace the extra fuel tanks Super Hornets currently sling under the wing, reducing weight and drag and enabling additional payload.

Finally, the budget supports “advanced signature enhancements,” which presumably have to do with the new aircraft’s stealth capabilities. This could be achieved with new and improved low-observable coating, but Gillian stresses the Block III upgrade is not primarily focused on stealth. Block III has “a balanced approach to survivability, including electronic warfare and self-protection,” he says.
U.S. Navy Green-Lights New And Improved Super Hornet | Combat Aircraft content from Aviation Week
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Old June 14th, 2017   #171
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The USN has approved funding for the Super Hornet Block III upgrade.

It will be interesting to see if we follow the same upgrade in Australia (I think the expectation was we would but this may be a bit much and a bit far ....others will be better informed) and what may flow on to the FA18G's
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Old June 14th, 2017   #172
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It will be interesting to see if we follow the same upgrade in Australia (I think the expectation was we would but this may be a bit much and a bit far ....others will be better informed) and what may flow on to the FA18G's
Gf comments a year ago are interesting. If money can be found, then it is going to be an easy path.

If you wanted to keep them around these upgrades would make it easier to integrate with f35 fleets. Data, range and Lo.

I would say this would be in the bag.
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Old June 14th, 2017   #173
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Wasn't the intent of the RAAF to realize the benefits of standardizing on a single platform. If they buy enough F-35s then why extend the service of the Super Hornets and incur the additional overhead costs?
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Old June 14th, 2017   #174
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USN to procure more Super Hornets

Looks like a purchase of at least 80 additional Block III F18s for the USN. Commentary points to need to fill gap with lags in F35 program and the use of the F18 as a complimentary airframe used WItH the F35

I like this analogy from breaking defense

""In this concept of operations, the synergy between F-18 and F-35 is a bit like the relationship between a sniper and his spotter. Sure, the spotter is armed, but his major contribution is to pick out targets for the guy with the really big gun. If you’re more historically inclined, imagine a late medieval knight going into battle with both longsword and mace. Like the F-35, the sword is best suited to slip through gaps in the enemy’s defense, but if you want to pound on someone as hard as possible, you need the mace, i.e. the F-18. Or think of a Dungeon & Dragons group where the F-35’s the thief, sneaking up behind the bad guys to deliver a devastating sneak attack, while the F-18’s the fighter whaling away on the front line.""

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Navy intends to buy at least 80 more Boeing F/A-18E-F Super Hornets over the next five years to address its fighter shortfall, a change from its previous on-the-books plan to zero out the aircraft program beginning next year, service officials said in congressional testimony today.

https://news.usni.org/2017/06/13/nav...hter-shortfall
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Old June 14th, 2017   #175
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If the USN orders 80 SHs and the ME orders are combined, this reduces the chances of availability for the RCAF's interim jet purchase. Factor in the Boeing- Bombardier trade dispute and the F-35's chances with the RCAF are looking good....

What a difference 6 months makes. Then again, who knows what junior might do next.
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Old June 14th, 2017   #176
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Wasn't the intent of the RAAF to realize the benefits of standardizing on a single platform. If they buy enough F-35s then why extend the service of the Super Hornets and incur the additional overhead costs?
That was certainly the original plan. But even with that original plan, there would be a significant period of transition between the the F-18 and the F-35 spanning many years.

Then with the CBR not being economically viable, air frame life issues with the RAAF F-18, the retirement of the F-111's and the delays in the F-35 and an always tight production schedule, that original plan was going to leave a capability gap in a region that is changing.

While I am not sure officially it has been stated that the plan is the keep the super hornets, the additional purchase and the word around town is that they are highly likely to stick around and not be hurried out of service. With high levels of commonality with the hornets, this doesn't really create a huge new burden (but would have if we had gone F-15SE for example) and they are also providing a useful 4.5 gen platform to transition to a true 5th gen F-35, operationally now in Syria. Australia has also sought to acquire capability which would be useful even after the F-35 introduction such as the 12 growlers.

In fact if anything the possibilities of further delays, slow production, slower development of later blocks with additional capabilities, is putting more pressure on the classic F-18's, people are again talking capability gap.

Nocookies | The Australian

Google : Classic Hornets ‘stretched beyond capability’ if JSF delayed

With the USN in a similar situation, most likely looking at keeping the SH around longer, an advanced hornet, the additional capabilities of a SH to act as bomb truck(like Australia's F-111s) or electronic warfare version, is tempting. It won't be an orphaned platform, upgrades form part of that.

But the advanced hornet package will help bridge that perceived capability gap in quality at least. Anything that increases range was already going to be on the acquisition radar as the SH still have less range than the F-111's.

Australia still has 72 F-35's ordered. But it looks to be a while before those are delivered. Complimenting that with 36 advanced hornets, while not ideal, seems livable and cost effective. In the mean time any other F-35 delays, issues, or if the region was to heat up, Australia has another production line and a capable plane in service ready to go. There are even USN orders keeping the line open that we might be able to push in front of again.

I wouldn't be surprised if Australia pays to integrate JSM onto the super hornets. It would also a reasonable platform for things like LRASM and all those big ugly things in the RAAF inventory JDAMs, Harpoons, JASSM etc.
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