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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; F-35B/C - Naval Air Discussions (USN & USMC) Dear Members, In view of the length of the old F-35 Discussion ...


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Old April 12th, 2012   #1
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F-35B/C - Naval Air Discussions (USN & USMC)

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

Dear Members,

In view of the length of the old F-35 Discussion thread (at 206 pages), the Mod Team have decided to close the old thread. From today onwards, members can continue their F-35 discussions in new threads. To organise these discussions, we have decided to split these discussions into three threads namely:
(i) F-35 Program - General Discussion (covering all common platform issues, like the helmet system, program office news, GAO reports, and weapons integration);

(ii) F-35B/C - Naval Air Discussions (covering all aircraft news specific to the USMC and the USN); and

(iii) F-35 - International Participation (Partners, SCP and FMS Sales Discussions).
We provide links to each of the other F-35 discussion threads above and this is No. 2 of 3 threads on the F-35. This thread dedicated to discussions related to the F-35B/C - Naval Air Discussions (covering all aircraft news specific to the USMC and the USN).

If you are a new member, you might want to read a backgrounder called "Air Power 101 for New Members", before posting to stay out of trouble (think of this as a survival guide, to avoid being banned by the Mod Team).

Journalism used to be an attempt to provide a balanced story. Unfortunately, some of the current reporting on the JSF tries to sell you a point of view that supports a pre-determined meme and we get poor quality journalism that contains known falsehoods to advance the meme. Further, we welcome informed criticism of the JSF program but we do not condone the passing-off of known falsehoods to advance an anti-F-35 meme (see the post on Clipping the Wings of Misinformation, in Air Power 101).

Having said the above, join us in the discussions below.

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Old January 7th, 2013   #2
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[Mod Edit: This post is copied from another thread because aussienscale's reply and re-direction provided HAWX is relevant. Australia is in the process of acquiring two Canberra Class LHDs but despite that, there is no intent to acquire F-35Bs nor any plans to operate fixed wing manned naval aviation on the Australian LHDs. As aussienscale noted below, there are threads where such hypothetical discussions took place; and he has provided such links to past discussions for your ease of reference.]

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Originally Posted by HAWX View Post
Australia is of course acquiring two LHDs as most of you probably already know. LHD stands for "landing helicopter dock" yet the LHDs have a runway and a ramp??? This might be a stupid question, but do you guys think that the F-35s we are getting in the future will be operational from these carriers? If any type of fixed wing aircraft are used on them, it will be a first for AUS in a while!
Hi Hawx, welcome to the site The short answer is no, you might see some possible cross decking from the USMC or the UK but that is about it.

The RAAF is aquiring the F-35A which is the conventional takeoff variant, the F-35B is required to operate from this type of vessell which is the short takeoff vertical landing variant.

Have a good read of the following threads, they have a wealth of discussion and information on this subject, and just a word of advise, read them as this subject comes up all the time and gets very tiresome, not saying that to palm you off, but it litteraly comes up every month or so

Royal Australian Navy Discussions and Updates

Sea trials, LHD (JCI)

A hypothetical carrier buy for the RAN?

These threads have a wealth of information, it is a lot of reading, but will have every imaginable bit of info you seek

Cheers
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Old April 7th, 2013   #3
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F-35B/C - Naval Air Discussions (USN & USMC)

The F-35C carrier variant of the Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) is distinct from the F-35A and F-35B variants with its larger wing surfaces and reinforced landing gear to withstand catapult launches and deck landing impacts associated with the demanding aircraft carrier environment.
Quote:
Originally Posted by AUSUN
How the F-35 is designed to work

Below is an extract of the April/May 2012 Issue of Navy (pages 17 to 19) -- Editor’s note: In late February, AUSN traveled to Naval Air Station (NAS) Patuxent River, Maryland, to interview Lt. Col. Matt Taylor, USMC, a test pilot in the F-35 program. A graduate of Georgia Tech, Taylor is an F/A-18 Hornet pilot with carrier deployments in his log book. He was the first pilot to take the Navy’s F-35C up to Mach 1.4. He is also one of the first Marine non-Harrier pilots to perform a vertical landing in the STOVL F-35B. We walked the hangar and looked at a number of both C and B model aircraft and then went to a conference room for the interview...

Q:As we walked around the hangar, we talked about mission systems. If we understand correctly, we are still doing basic flight characteristics testing, while on other airframes the mission systems integration is beginning. How is that coming along?

Lt.Col.Taylor: That’s true. We have done some mission systems testing here at Pax River. Remember, the avionics suite is common between the “A,” “B,” and “C” models. So the program by intent has weighted the mission systems testing out at Edwards with the Air Force... We are still early on, still testing [software load] Block 1B which is a flight test load. The first operational load is Block 3, so we are a couple of [software] builds away from what the fleet will actually see. We’ve done enough [flying] here that I say that the sensors themselves work very well. What will be important will be how well they all work together. We are just now getting into that testing. The performance of the sensors is exciting. I can tell you that.

Q: For the “C” model, we have this carrier suitability thing that we have to go through. Our understanding is that it has been launched in Lakehurst, NJ, with the new EMALS (electro-magnetic aircraft launch system) and we are into recovery as well. Apparently, we have a problem with the hook in terms of the percentage of good traps. Can you speak to that for us?

Lt.Col.Taylor: You’re right, we have done carrier suitability detachments to Lakehurst with an aircraft that is fully equipped with mission systems because we want to be sure that all that stuff can withstand the carrier environment. The catapults went well. We first did envelope expansion on the catapult starting with the middle of the envelope, then proceeding to worst case scenarios with low wind over the deck, etc. The airplane did great. The engine didn’t hiccup at all. We did steam ingestion catapults and then we moved over to EMALS. The first roll-in arrestments, as you mentioned, were a bit of a different story. We didn’t quite get what we wanted there so there is a hook redesign in progress. We expect that will change the hook shape itself and also change the hook hold-down damper. We haven’t gotten that redesign yet. But that is why we are here testing, to see how things work and change the design if necessary to make it work like it’s supposed to.

Q: You’ve touched a bit on the maneuvering aspects of the airplane. The F-35 is not designed to be as maneuverable as the F-22 but how does it compare with the F/A-18?

Lt.Col.Taylor:It's about the same. I think it would be a great dogfight between the F-35 and the F/A-18. That would be fun to see.

Q: We’ve also read that it bleeds energy pretty quickly compared to other fighters. What's your experience with that?

Lt.Col.Taylor:I’ve seen the numbers, too. I would be hesitant to make a generalization until I have a chance to fight the airplane, which we haven’t gotten to do yet. My sense, from flying the airplane [compared to the F/A-18], is that it really isn’t very different. The F/A-18 bleeds energy, too, and every airplane has an area where it does that.
The F-35As were the first to enter flight test at Edwards AFB with the F-35C being the last to enter testing. The F-35C will undergoing test and evaluation at NAS Patuxent River prior to delivery to the US Navy.
Quote:
Originally Posted by DefenseUpdate
New Flight Control Mode Improves F-35 Handling on Landing Approach

25 July 2012 -- Flying approaches for a carrier landing just might be a little easier in the future. The F-35 Integrated Test Force at Patuxent River completed the first dedicated test flight May 4 to evaluate the F-35C Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter’s approach handling characteristics with new flight control laws. Part of software version 2A the new flight control software, called Integrated Direct Lift Control (IDLC), translates pilot commands into choreographed changes to engine power and control surface movement, greatly improving glide path control, according to one test pilot.

“I’ve landed [F/A-18] Hornets on a carrier, and I can tell you there is a lot less lag in the F-35C with the IDLC,” said Marine Corps Lt. Col. Matthew Taylor, an F-35 test pilot. “I would have been comfortable making the approaches in the carrier environment after just two to three passes.” Precise glide path control is critical to landing safely on the carrier as a pilot concentrates on maintaining glide slope, angle of attack and lineup...

F-35 New Flight Control Software - YouTube

...Another change to the F-35C is the redesigned tail hook. Lockheed Martin is confident the redesigned tailhook will be ready for the planned carrier flight tests currently scheduled for 2014. The original hook did not perform well and casued the aircraft to miss the arresting cable too often.
A F-35C pilot explains how IDLC will greatly improving glide path control in another media report. In a few years the F-35C’s flight control system will pair with the Joint Precision Approach and Landing System (JPALS) to enable data-linked approaches controlled from the carrier. IDLC will take relevant incoming data from the flight control computer and aid in making the process that much more precise.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Defense Media Network
IDLC will make carrier approaches easier

9 October 2012 -- ...I felt that was a little vague, so I called NAVAIR and chatted with F-35C test pilot Cmdr. Eric “Magic” Buus to break down what IDLC does in more concrete terms. IDLC’s job is to quickly help the pilot make glide slope adjustments during the carrier approach, Buus explains. It is resident within all three F-35 variants, not just the C model.
“What provides a huge benefit to the pilot is that [IDLC] moves the trailing edge flaps up or down to increase or decrease lift, which gives the airplane a very precise glide path control. It almost feels like a predictive control because it happens so quickly and you can get such effective changes in glide path. The trailing edge flaps are pretty large on the F-35C. For a carrier approach we nominally set them to 15 degrees trailing edge down, which is a half-flap configuration. So there’s room for the flaps to come down and to come up and either increase or decrease lift.”
In essence, one could call IDLC “automatic flap response.” Its effect is to literally “heave” the airplane in the vertical axis, Buus says...

...NAVAIR contends that IDLC can potentially shorten the carrier qualification learning curve for new pilots by offering more control during the approach, and Buus agrees.
“The flight control engineers have really done an amazing job. IDLC is just one part of it. It’s an easier airplane to fly behind the ship. The easier the airplane is to fly, the safer it is and the easier to train pilots to fly it well. Over time, I think it will reduce some of the training costs and burden to the Fleet.”
...With its larger wing and flaps and control harmony, the F-35C benefits more from IDLC than its sister variants. But they too enjoy more precise approach control with the system, Buus maintains. And he adds that it could be integrated into legacy aircraft such as the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet and EA-18G Growler.
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Old April 7th, 2013   #4
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US Marine Corps Concepts & Programs 2013

The F-35 brings strategic agility, operational flexibility and tactical supremacy to the Marine Air Ground Task Force (MAGTF). The F-35B variant unites 5th generation stealth, precision weapons and multi-spectral sensors with expeditionary responsiveness on a Short Take-off and Vertical Landing (STOVL) Fighter-attack platform. The F-35B will replace AV-8B, F/A-18 Hornet, and EA-6B aircraft and the F-35C will replace F/A-18C/D stationed on US Navy aircraft carriers.

The F-35 is a force-multiplier for the MAGTF commander. It can operate without degradation within anti-access or highly contested airspace providing an advanced engagement capability that is not possible with legacy aircraft. The F-35 fuses information from all of its sensors and displays it to the pilot on large panoramic cockpit displays. This comprehensive and intuitive display provides complete situation awareness to the pilot, showing the location and status of both enemy and friendly forces. The ability for the F-35 to accomplish the entire kill chain independently minimizes reliance on other support aircraft. This reduces logistical requirements, further decreasing strains on MAGTF resources.

The US Marine Corps (USMC) will employ the F-35B and F-35C to support the six functions of Marine Corps aviation. The six functions of Marine Aviation are as follows:
(1) assault support;
(2) anti-aircraft warfare;
(3) offensive air support;
(4) electronic warfare;
(5) control of aircraft and missiles; and
(6) aerial reconnaissance.
This remarkable breadth of employment will allow the Marine Corps to decrease its tactical aviation inventory while increasing aircraft lethality, survivability, and supportability compared to those of legacy aircraft.

It is no exaggeration that the future of American air power — and American military pre-eminence in the Pacific — rests on the successful progress of the JSF program. The key to that progress is stable funding. The F-35’s greatest value is derived from its role in US grand strategy. That is, a good deal of the value of the F-35 comes from understanding its overall value as a fleet and in the context of the future of US air power in general. Too much of the conversation and almost all of the controversy comes from losing this critical perspective. Dr. Robert Farley's Oct 2011 article, 'Over the Horizon: The Transformative Capabilities of the F-35B', explains some of the broader issues relating to the F-35B, that demonstrate second order effects.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Robert Farley
Over the Horizon: The Transformative Capabilities of the F-35B

On Monday, an F-35B Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter completed its first vertical landing at sea, aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Wasp...

...At a time when the construction of every new Russian, Chinese or Indian carrier appears to be a cause for concern in the United States, the U.S. Navy has the ability to effectively create a dozen new carriers at will, each as capable as the most effective foreign contemporaries. Moreover, while the F-35 has been developed by an international consortium, export rights for the F-35B will be controlled by the United States. As there is currently no foreign alternative to the F-35B, this effectively means that the U.S. will have the final say on which countries can turn their flat-deck helicopter-carrying warships into light strike carriers.

The F-35B is one of those exceedingly rare weapon systems with transformative capabilities. With the F-35B, the United States Navy could have the equivalent of 22 strike carriers, a number that no other country could hope to challenge. This is a capability worth paying extra for. The F-35B could become a more important system than either of its sisters, or the F-22 Raptor. Unfortunately, too many seem to miss the forest for the trees.
The UK are also interested in using the Shipborne Rolling Vertical Landing (SRVL) method to increase the bring-back capability for the F-35B. With SRVL developed, UK's F-35Bs will be able to a make a 6-deg. glideslope landing to bring-back up to 2,000-pound bombs for F-35B missions. The UK is planning to place an order for 14 the F-35B in late 2013. The UK wants to be able to deliver an initial operating capability from land bases toward the end of 2018 and a full capability, including carrier operations by 2023 (see 'UK Looks Ahead To F-35 Carrier Ops' for details).
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Old April 7th, 2013   #5
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First F-35B Delivery to MCAS Yuma - YouTube

On 20 Nov 2012, Lockheed Martin delivered three F-35B short takeoff/vertical landing (STOVL) aircraft to the US Marine Corps during ceremonies at Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Ariz. Official welcoming ceremonies at Yuma marked the handover of the jets to the Marines. The delivery of the first three operational-coded 5th generation F-35B STOVL fighters marks the beginning of STOVL tactical operational training at Air Station Yuma.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Doug Aguillard
...The F-35B, a short takeoff and vertical landing fighter, is slated to replace the Marine Corps’ F/A-18 Hornet, AV-8B Harrier and EA-6B Prowler. It will provide multi-role, fifth-generation capabilities in the form of one common tactical fixed-wing aircraft, reducing maintenance costs while ensuring the Marine Corps maintains the tactical aircraft dominance required to deter potential adversaries and protect the nation’s interests. [As General James F. Amos, Commandant of the Marine Corps, said:]

“For the first time in aviation history, the most lethal fighter characteristics, supersonic speed, radar-evading stealth, extreme agility, short takeoff/vertical landing capability, and an impressive array of 21st Century weapons have been combined in a single platform.”
https://media.gractions.com/243F8CB0...7b1c909253.jpg

The F-35B supports the Marine Corps’ tactical and operational needs for close air support in austere conditions and locations that may be inaccessible to traditional fighters. Thanks to its short takeoff and vertical landing capabilities, the F-35B can operate from expeditionary airfields in remote, non-permissive environments with shorter runways, contributing to the Marine Corps’ role as the nation’s expeditionary force-in-readiness.

I was able to spend a few minutes with Major Aric Liberman, who flew both Lightning II’s from Fort Worth, Texas, to MCAS Yuma. I had three specific questions for him.

Q: “How does she fly?”
A: “Smooth, she’s fly-by-wire and she handles very well. I haven’t had the chance to go vertical yet, and I believe all of the pilots will be really impressed with her handling and controls.”

Q: “Since Hornet pilots don’t do the whole vertical thing, and Harrier pilots don’t do a lot of supersonic flight and air combat training, who will have the hardest time transitioning into the F-35?”
A: “I believe that both Hornet and Harrier pilots will have sufficient training, and since Marine pilots are highly skilled aviators, there should be a short learning curve for all.”

Q: “Since the majority of their mission is ground support, will the Harrier pilots be pulled from their units, and sent to the VMFAT F/A-18 training units to get more air to air combat training?"
A: “No, I don’t believe that will happen. Harrier pilots do get some air combat training right now, and when going through the training with the F-35, they will see plenty of air combat training”.
...


*The above is an extract from an 30 December 2012 article by Doug Aguillard: "F-35B’s Delivered to MCAS Yuma".
First F-35B Night Vertical Landing - YouTube

On 20 February 2013, it was reported that the US Navy scuttled plans for further testing of the F-35B aboard USS Wasp and buy four fewer F-35s -- two each of the F-35B and F-35C.
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Old April 8th, 2013   #6
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Q: “Since Hornet pilots don’t do the whole vertical thing, and Harrier pilots don’t do a lot of supersonic flight and air combat training, who will have the hardest time transitioning into the F-35?”
A: “I believe that both Hornet and Harrier pilots will have sufficient training, and since Marine pilots are highly skilled aviators, there should be a short learning curve for all.”
Just to confirm, USMC future only with F-35B right ? No SHornet for USMC right ? I've read several information on various media on this matter. Although I do believe most report indicated that F-35B will be the sole Fighters in USMC inventory, however some comment in other forum or media indicating that USMC still want to use FA-18F to replace their current FA-18D.

Quote:
Q: “Since the majority of their mission is ground support, will the Harrier pilots be pulled from their units, and sent to the VMFAT F/A-18 training units to get more air to air combat training?"
A: “No, I don’t believe that will happen. Harrier pilots do get some air combat training right now, and when going through the training with the F-35, they will see plenty of air combat training”.
OPSSG can you give me some clarification, Is this mean the F-35B will used mostly for Ground Support, or (this I tend more to believe), Harriers uses mostly as Ground Support (which it'is) and their Pilots need to be trained on Hornet for Air Combat Training. Anyway where do those Harriers pilots get combat training (if not with Hornet) ? I thought AV-8B only have limited Air Combat capabilities (compared to RAN Sea Harriers). Are they get Air Combat training with their AV-8B ? Is it sufficient for them getting Air Combat training with AV-8B considering their relative limited Air Combat capabilities ?
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Old April 8th, 2013   #7
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USMC future only with F-35B right ?
No, this is wrong. The USMC is to acquire 340 F-35Bs (which may be deployed from FOBs, LHDs and LHAs) and 80 F-35Cs (which will be deployed from USN carriers). Each USN carrier has a USMC squadron.

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Originally Posted by Ananda View Post
No SHornet for USMC right ?
Yes. The USMC does not want to buy the Super Hornet.

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Originally Posted by Ananda View Post
I do believe most report indicated that F-35B will be the sole Fighters in USMC inventory
Wrong. See above reply and for more details on who is buying what, I repeat some information posted in another thread below.

Quote:
As at 14 March 2013, the number of fighters to be acquired are:
1,763 F-35As — USAF • 340 F-35Bs/80 F-35Cs — USMC • 260 F-35Cs — USN

Level 1 partner (financial stake in JSF program):
138 F-35Bs — UK (US$2.5 billion)

Level 2 partners (financial stake in JSF program):
60 F-35As/30 F-35Bs — Italy (US$1 billion)
85 F-35As — Netherlands (US$800 million)

Level 3 partners (financial stake in JSF program):
100 F-35As — Australia (US$144 million)
100 F-35As — Turkey (US$195 million)
65 F-35As — Canada (US$160 million)
52 F-35As — Norway (US$122 million)
30 F-35As — Denmark (US$110 million)

Security Cooperative Participants:
19 F-35As — Israel
Undergoing evaluation — Singapore

FMS Customer (with some assembled in Japan):
42 F-35As — Japan
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ananda View Post
Is this mean the F-35B will used mostly for Ground Support, or (this I tend more to believe)...
All combat coded F-35A/B/Cs are all supersonic; all are capable of air combat and also capable of conducting ground attack in the same mission. This means strike packages can self escort, rather than have another flight of aircraft to perform combat air patrol.

All variants of the Harriers are subsonic (with or without radar on the nose) - so not so useful in future air battles. They will be replaced by the F-35B for the USMC, British Navy and Italian Navy.

Hope this reply helps clarify things for you. Feel free to ask any questions, as you are a much valued member of our forum. I hope the others will add to my reply on these questions raised by you.

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Old April 8th, 2013   #8
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Ok Thanks, sometimes I got confused when try following the Arguments on JSF especially F-35B. Many plus and minus arguments on F-35B on various media and forums, which some of them I do think has merit.

One of them the argument's on effectiveness of F-35B from LHA as Light-Medium carriers. The argument I believe arise with the thinking that USN in the future will only can afford 6-8 super carriers (like Nimitz and Future Ford), from current 10-12 ones. This raise the need for LHA conduct secondary Carriers duty as Medium Carriers thus still can provide USN with up to 20 flat tops.

However this thinking being challenge with the arguments that F-35B will have limited weapons load and range compared to F-35C, that will render LHA has to operated closer to shores and in such more vulnerable, and thus still need Super Carriers to support them. In sense LHA even with F-35B can't operated as independent like present super carrier group, thus using LHA with F-35B as replacement/augmenting shrinking super carriers force considered unworkable.

What do you think about this ? Can LHA (say 2-3 LHA with F-35B) can replace 1 Nimitz/Ford ? I know it's not what LHA being design for, but the thinking with US economics capability in future, raised questions on the USN capabilities on operating same number of Nimitz/Ford with present inventory.

Other thinking that I see arise is for USN operated 4-6 Ford and augmented with similar number of French CDG sizes nuclear/conventional medium carriers. However this thinking also being challenge since it can potentially force USN to reduce the number of LHA thus reducing the amphibious capabilities.

In short there are still arguments and thinking to sacrificed F-35B in USN/USMC or RN for F-35C fleet only to safe costs.

RN flip-flopping on F-35B (yes they are now come back again to F-35B, but looking to their latest practices, in my mind did not guarantee they will not some time in future referred back to F-35C although this will increased the building costs of QE2 and PoW), That's left Italian Navy that still wants F-35B for Cavour. Singapore show interest on F-35B, but in my mind this is too early to guarantee Singapore in the end will not back to F-35A.

In short, compared to F-35A and F-35C, the B versions still have potential on vulnerability of the program continuations. Do you think the B future already save ?
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Old April 8th, 2013   #9
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I think if the Falklands War showed anything it's that a STOVL asset... even at reduced capability can be game changing. It brings something unique to the table and given the complete lack of alternatives I think its safe to say the F-35B is secure long term. In my opinion anyway.

Ananda you raise several points about the USN in the long term and I have to admit I personally see them having to scale back their numbers of Super Carriers. The good thing is that the F-35B opens doors to other options if that is indeed true. While it's not ideal a couple WASP Class LHD's for example could project air power if needed and be at the right place at the right time to get the job done in a lot of circumstances. Even if it's just to buy the USN enough time to redeploy a Super Carrier to an exploding hot spot.
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Old April 8th, 2013   #10
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The good thing is that the F-35B opens doors to other options if that is indeed true. While it's not ideal a couple WASP Class LHD's for example could project air power if needed and be at the right place at the right time to get the job done in a lot of circumstances.
The question is how far the capabilities of LHA/LHD with F-35B can replace Nimitz or Ford super carriers. The thinking right now is whether F-35B can only be supplemental for F-35C or alternative.

Right now USMC uses their AV-8B as ground support from LHA/LHD during amphibious operations. This concept try to be maximize with F-35B in such 2 LHA/LHD can be used by USN as alternative for Nimitz and Ford in the future, if the economics reality force USN only with 6-8 super carriers in the service. In sense the deficit of 3-4 Nimitz/Ford capabilities will be replaced by 6-8 LHA/LHD with F-35B.

Again this raised questions.."Can it be done properly ?? " Can 2 or even 3 LHA/LHD with F-35B can replace a single Nimitz/Ford with all their F-35C, SHornet, Growler, and AEW ??

If not..How far as potential stop gap the concept of LHA with F-35B can be uses as stop gap for Super Carriers ? example : LHA with F-35B can only be uses against softer target, but not all out Carrier Battle Group operations on Blue Water..

This in turn would not satisfied the proponent of USN keeping the carrier force as it is, which according to several sources that I gather still strong politically. Then again Economic reality can say otherwise.

That's why, I still found ideas and support for JSF program to ditch F-35B to save costs, thus enable to secure rational costs for F-35 A and C.

Again I'm not supporting any Ideas, but wandering if the future for F-35B already save or not, since this's the one (that I believe) from the program that the future still have potential as questionable.
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Old April 8th, 2013   #11
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RN flip-flopping on F-35B (yes they are now come back again to F-35B, but looking to their latest practices, in my mind did not guarantee they will not some time in future referred back to F-35C although this will increased the building costs of QE2 and PoW),
The UK will not buy the F35C, it was an idea from the Conservative Government and they made the change back to the F35B.

The only other scenario that might happen is after the initial buy of 48, the remainder may be filled with either of the other variants of the F35 to satisfy the JCA requirements but then would result in being the replacement of the Typhoon in the 2030's, so a bit of a political nightmare.
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Old April 8th, 2013   #12
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The only other scenario that MIGHT happen is after the initial buy of 48, the remainder may be filled with either of the other variants of the F35 to satisfy the JCA requirements but then would result in being the replacement of the Typhoon in the 2030's, so a bit of a political nightmare.
Thanks Rob, I do believe if 48 already firmed on F-35B, potential of any other variance of F-35 will only came as Typhoon replacement. Which still can be since no talk or any concept mature yet for possible Typhoon replacement (that I know of).

Well, I just thinking on the Ideas that I pick up from pther forums and media, that if USN do reduced their Super Carriers numbers, then it will definitely have impact on the number of F-35C. Having smaller nuclear class carriers (like the size of French CdG) seems will not gain much of saving as it hoped, compared to LHA with F-35B.

That's what I'm raising now, will the concept of LHA with F-35B can satisfies with proponent of Super Carriers which I do believe still strong politically in US. Or they might go other way, thus scrapping F-35B to save F-35C (including 10+ super carriers capabilities).
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Old April 8th, 2013   #13
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That's currently how it's laid out, but i'm not going to really go into Tiffy here.

I don't believe the LHA concept does very well in the US, IIRC after the first 2 (LHA 6 & LHA 7) America's being produced - which were designed with aviation facilities in mind - the rest will be given a well dock which will probably have a significant impact on those aviation facilities, so the 'small carrier' capacity won't be as potent after the first 2 ships anyway. Just had a check on Wiki and it's apparently to do with the USMC not being a fan of the LPH concept which would be the America's primary method of moving troops.

The current numbers being thrown around is 20 F35B's when in a 'mini aircraft carrier' mode, so it'll be less than that after the first 2.

Need to weigh it up, if the USN doesn't get the F35C presumably they could go back to the F/A -18E/F (which the C's aren't replacing). If the USMC loses the F35B then they know they lose fixed wing aviation, not to mention a rather ticked off Italy and UK now with huuuuuuge LPH's.

Personally I believe the USN willl drop a couple of carriers, i'd love someone to point me in the direction of info saying it won't happen. But it's just important to remember that every USMC LHD/LHA operating as a mini carrier loses a big chunk of it's amphibious capability.
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Old April 8th, 2013   #14
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@Ananda, the F-35B is the jewel in the crown of the JSF program. At one stage, the F-35B was on probation but no longer. It is still under development, just like the other two.

F-35B - Taking STOVL to a New Level - YouTube

Some of the other forums you frequent deal with imaginary matters, rather than what is real (and it does not help that they have members who peddle misinformation). Which is why you were confused. You now stand corrected, in this thread. Cancelling any type now (A, B or C), at this stage will not save costs and would increase production lot costs. It needs volume to drive costs down and the F-35 buys in Asia will help with volume. See the F-35 - International Participation thread for more F-35 details and latest news on Japan, Korean and Singapore.
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Old April 8th, 2013   #15
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Need to weigh it up, if the USN doesn't get the F35C presumably they could go back to the F/A -18E/F (which the C's aren't replacing). If the USMC loses the F35B then they know they lose fixed wing aviation, not to mention a rather ticked off Italy and UK now with huuuuuuge LPH's.

Personally I believe the USN willl drop a couple of carriers, i'd love someone to point me in the direction of info saying it won't happen. But it's just important to remember that every USMC LHD/LHA operating as a mini carrier loses a big chunk of it's amphibious capability.
Yes personally, I do tend to see USN with 8 Ford and Nimitz after 2020. Which considering the situations with everybody else, will not be a disaster for USN (I do not believe by then China will able to operated 4 carriers like some China forumers says). Still will be interesting to see how far this mini-carriers concept will be put forward if they do lose 2-3 super carriers capability.

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Some of the other forums you frequent deals with imaginary matters, rather than what is real. Which is why you were confused. You now stand corrected, in this thread. Cancelling any type now (A, B or C), at this stage will not save costs and would increase costs.
Thanks OPSSG, however do you mind elaborate on your statement why canceling B will not made saving in the costs of A and C ? Is this because by canceling B, there are no guarantee that the number of B cancelled will be allocated toward A and C, in such the Investment costs that being put on B, will not be replaced by new A and C numbers ?
( I tend to think that since it's more economic make sense, then some of arguments being put that seems neglected to calculate Investment costs of the B's or simply think it can be replace by allocating the order to A and C, which I do not believe as easy of that).

Edit: Ok I see your point from other thread.

Add:
Sometime I'm wandering if the JSF life as a program will be easier if B is not included. Don't get me wrong I do believe B is one thing that differentiated JSF from other program. Don't believe in near future anyone else can come out with a LO Supersonic gen 5 fighter. However I do seems to think from many arguments and media report, that seems made me think JSF life will be much easier without B.

However I do hope B still can materializes as operational Fighters soon.

Last edited by OPSSG; April 8th, 2013 at 11:33 PM. Reason: Fixed quote format
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