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F-35B/C - Naval Air Discussions (USN & USMC)

This is a discussion on F-35B/C - Naval Air Discussions (USN & USMC) within the Air Force & Aviation forum, part of the Global Defense & Military category; Originally Posted by John Fedup Would here have been any merit in having a CATOBAR F-35 that could accept either ...


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Old June 13th, 2014   #61
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Would here have been any merit in having a CATOBAR F-35 that could accept either the conventional F135 engine or the lift-fan version thus allowing more flexibility?
You mean having a STOVL variant that can also be catapult-launched?
If so, I think the weight penalties required to make it more robust to handle the stresses would be severe. Also, that would open a can of worms i.e., start a serious discussion on the case for big-deck CATOBAR ships.. maybe build more LHA-6 types instead. Definitely no where as capable but more affordable.
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Old June 14th, 2014   #62
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Would here have been any merit in having a CATOBAR F-35 that could accept either the conventional F135 engine or the lift-fan version thus allowing more flexibility?
Doubtful. You seem to be referring to STOBAR style operations. STOBAR represents the worst of both worlds. You don't get the range and payload of a full conventional carrier fighter, nor the short landing capability and take-off flexibility of a STOVL fighter.

It's somewhere in between and why you'd opt for it when you can get a real catapult launched fighter or a STOVL fighter in the same family, I'm not sure.

F-35B can take off from a ship without a ski-jump or a catapult already anyway.

F-35B Ship Suitability Testing - YouTube
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Old June 14th, 2014   #63
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It seems like it'd negate the advantage of the C over the B with increased fuel and larger payloads whilst at the same time making the STOVL performance worse as the airframe is heavier and erodes the bringback limits.
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Old June 14th, 2014   #64
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It seems like it'd negate the advantage of the C over the B with increased fuel and larger payloads whilst at the same time making the STOVL performance worse as the airframe is heavier and erodes the bringback limits.
Precisely. No one would opt for STOBAR style carriers if they could afford either of the other options.
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Old June 14th, 2014   #65
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It seems like it'd negate the advantage of the C over the B with increased fuel and larger payloads whilst at the same time making the STOVL performance worse as the airframe is heavier and erodes the bringback limits.
I was thinking that having a C version that could be converted back and forth to a B by simply swapping engines might be useful but if the heavier weight of the C screws the STOVL performance then it is a price too high.
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Old June 14th, 2014   #66
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What would be interesting is if a QE or Cavour fitted with arrester gear of some sort could cross deck Cs in a limited fashion.
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Old June 14th, 2014   #67
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Doubtful. You seem to be referring to STOBAR style operations. STOBAR represents the worst of both worlds. You don't get the range and payload of a full conventional carrier fighter, nor the short landing capability and take-off flexibility of a STOVL fighter.

It's somewhere in between and why you'd opt for it when you can get a real catapult launched fighter or a STOVL fighter in the same family, I'm not sure.

F-35B can take off from a ship without a ski-jump or a catapult already anyway.

F-35B Ship Suitability Testing - YouTube
The B doesn't need a ski-ramp? I was not aware it could do conventional take-off without a ramp.
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Old June 14th, 2014   #68
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The B doesn't need a ski-ramp? I was not aware it could do conventional take-off without a ramp.
Certainly can. The Wasp Class don't have ski-ramps. They were used for initial suitability trials...
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Old June 14th, 2014   #69
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What would be interesting is if a QE or Cavour fitted with arrester gear of some sort could cross deck Cs in a limited fashion.
I've read that L-M is investigating whether the -C could be used for STOBAR operations off a ship with a ski-jump (similar to the Chinese J-15's) but I don't imagine it's a high priority. Maybe just a quick study to see if it's feasible so they could propose the idea IF a customer for such could be identified (India maybe?)

Most Western nations will use Harrier, F-35B, Super Hornet or Rafale -M from their carriers. I can't see anyone bar the USN (and the USMC being forced to buy some) purchasing the -C model.

Be cheaper to remove the arresting system on your ships and just run F-35B's...
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Old June 14th, 2014   #70
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Certainly can. The Wasp Class don't have ski-ramps. They were used for initial suitability trials...
Neither do the new America-class LHA. AFAIK the Navy argues that a ramp will subtract from total landing spots

The F-35Bs taking off from CVF will launch with heavier loads using their ramp. Likewise, using SRVL, they will also be able to recover aboard ship with a higher allowance for unexpended ordnance.
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Old June 14th, 2014   #71
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Certainly can. The Wasp Class don't have ski-ramps. They were used for initial suitability trials...
Yep, I watched a video. The lift fan seems to be used in take off so I guess this is why no ramp is required. I assume there would be no advantage to using a ramp with the B and not using the lift fan during take off?
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Old June 14th, 2014   #72
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Yep, I watched a video. The lift fan seems to be used in take off so I guess this is why no ramp is required. I assume there would be no advantage to using a ramp with the B and not using the lift fan during take off?
Using the lift fan makes taking off without a ramp possible carrying a full internal ordnance load.
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Old June 14th, 2014   #73
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Yep, I watched a video. The lift fan seems to be used in take off so I guess this is why no ramp is required. I assume there would be no advantage to using a ramp with the B and not using the lift fan during take off?
Not sure, haven't seen the F-35B take off from a ski jump yet. I know L-M has tested it as they have a land based ramp for this purpose, but haven't seen a vid of it yet, nor any pics so not sure what configuration it uses.

It won't ever be a problem however, not when the F-35B is capable of this...

WATCH: Marine F-35B Executes First Vertical Takeoff & Vertical Landing - YouTube
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Old June 14th, 2014   #74
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Vertical takeoffs will offer drama but little else..,the B weighs 32,300lbs empty and generates 40,500lbs thrust per LM website.. the difference is just 8,200lbs for,ordnance and fuel..,presumably pilot also. Not a useful configuration for going to war.


AFAIK, aboard ship, STOs will be the rule using lift fan to allow max fuel and max internal ordnance. STO used in conjunction with a ramp,as in CVF, will be even better allowing external ordnance in addition
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Old August 21st, 2014   #75
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Vertical takeoffs will offer drama but little else..,the B weighs 32,300lbs empty and generates 40,500lbs thrust per LM website.. the difference is just 8,200lbs for,ordnance and fuel..,presumably pilot also. Not a useful configuration for going to war.


AFAIK, aboard ship, STOs will be the rule using lift fan to allow max fuel and max internal ordnance. STO used in conjunction with a ramp,as in CVF, will be even better allowing external ordnance in addition
that is correct sir, the B will always STO with any kind of a load, and it also provides a much greater margin of safety even at light weights. The C offers superior performance due to its Catobar configuration, and I am anxiously awaiting the first shots of the C off the Nimitz in October. Lockmart recently received the 150th Wing Center Section, so this airplane is starting to be produced in numbers..
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