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This is a discussion on USAF News and Discussion within the Air Force & Aviation forum, part of the Global Defense & Military category; Originally Posted by SpudmanWP That was asked several times (not directly) in the press conference and the answer was no. ...


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Old October 28th, 2015   #61
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That was asked several times (not directly) in the press conference and the answer was no.

The answer would have to be "no" even if the answer was really "yes". No point in making the protest easy. In any event, retaining three combat air framers is a win for US taxpayers. NG has done some great work with the RQ180 and X-47B so hopefully this continues with the LRSB.
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Old October 29th, 2015   #62
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Congrats to NG, I was rooting for them. I think their unique experience in actually building and supporting the B-2 rranslated into a superior offer. The DoD was on the record that the best platform solution would win and that industry considerations would not factor into the evaluation.
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Old October 30th, 2015   #63
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Congrats to NG, I was rooting for them. I think their unique experience in actually building and supporting the B-2 rranslated into a superior offer. The DoD was on the record that the best platform solution would win and that industry considerations would not factor into the evaluation.
I see the B3 are potentially more than just A long range strike platform. We've all seen discussions regarding the light AAW load out of the F35 series and the potential of using another "truck" to carry a large load of AMRAMs etc. initial indications may look toward the LRSB as having this capabi,it's


Some details of the LRS-B program have by now been well-publicized. The projected costs over the next ten years have been estimated—by two independent teams—at $23.5 billion in development, and $564 million per initial production aircraft. The latter is well under the inflation-adjusted cost cap of about $619 million (in FY 2016 terms) set in 2010 by then-Defense Secretary Robert Gates. An eighty-person team in the Air Force’s Rapid Capabilities Office is managing the entire project, with a greatly streamlined process. The electronic architecture will be open, as already demonstrated on the B-2A, so that add-on capabilities will be easier to incorporate in the future should it be deemed necessary. Two or three test aircraft will be built first, followed by five low-rate production lots comprising another 21 aircraft. Around 2025, the first squadron of LRS-Bs will fly as part of Global Strike Command, the USAF’s consolidated home for all bombers.

There has been some sound speculation as well. The new plane won’t be just a “bomber,” according to retired Lieutenant General David Deptula, but a “long-range sensor-shooter,” in an indication of a much wider range of potential capabilities. John Stillion of the CSBA has suggested even an air-to-air role. Presumably, each plane will be a versatile flying wing-body, with a two-person crew, numerous bombs, high subsonic speed, high survivability, and no gold-plating. If the aircraft performs as well as hoped, the shift in American attention to the long distances of the Pacific theater may set up “an inevitable competition” for money between LRS-B and F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) over the next decade.
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Old October 31st, 2015   #64
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So the russians' obsession with big radars and big high-speed aircraft able to carry a huge assortment of BVR missiles is well-placed. Because a barrage of long-range missiles with different seekers seems to be an answer to big and stealthy strike aircraft with ultra-advanced electronics.
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Old October 31st, 2015   #65
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So the russians' obsession with big radars and big high-speed aircraft able to carry a huge assortment of BVR missiles is well-placed. Because a barrage of long-range missiles with different seekers seems to be an answer to big and stealthy strike aircraft with ultra-advanced electronics.
I don't necessarily agree it's "the answer".

There are still many things that can disrupt the kill chain for those many missiles assuming they can effectively locate, track, and get and maintain a successful firing solution. All of which the F35 is built to maximize.

Yes, do Russian fighters have higher load out, but that still doesn't necessitate success via higher tech aircraft IMO
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Old October 31st, 2015   #66
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Would this new bomber have enough power to use a laser rather than aam's. Otherwise it sounds like a bad idea putting a large expensive aircraft anywhere near modern interceptors most of which have missiles that outrange the amraam.
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Old October 31st, 2015   #67
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Would this new bomber have enough power to use a laser rather than aam's. Otherwise it sounds like a bad idea putting a large expensive aircraft anywhere near modern interceptors most of which have missiles that outrange the amraam.
there has been mention of the use of onboard lasers. not necessarily as a weapons system
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Old November 1st, 2015   #68
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there has been mention of the use of onboard lasers. not necessarily as a weapons system
At the very least LRSB could benefit from something like this being envisioned for the F-35.
Northrop Unveils F-35 Missile Protection System | Defense News | defensenews.com

By the next decade, the Air Force Research Lab projects airborne lasers powerful enough to take out a/c and missiles. I think Congress won't be hard to convince once they see actual prototypes in action.
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Old November 1st, 2015   #69
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there has been mention of the use of onboard lasers. not necessarily as a weapons system
From what I've read Laser with offensive power and range are a goal of integration into the FA/XX and the next 6th gen fighter
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Old November 1st, 2015   #70
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there has been mention of the use of onboard lasers. not necessarily as a weapons system
Wouldn't be comms/datalink related, by any chance?
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Old November 1st, 2015   #71
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Wouldn't be comms/datalink related, by any chance?
My guess would've been as DIRCM, though that's fairly common even now.

AF is pursuing HELLADS for a self protection laser to shoot down incoming threats.
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Old November 2nd, 2015   #72
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Wouldn't be comms/datalink related, by any chance?
there has been some work on short range laser comms, especially with subs. mainly blue lasers though

my understanding is that there have been trials for multi carrier capability

eg short range defence and disruptor/weapons and DIRCM in the one system
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Old November 2nd, 2015   #73
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My guess would've been as DIRCM, though that's fairly common even now.

AF is pursuing HELLADS for a self protection laser to shoot down incoming threats.
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there has been some work on short range laser comms, especially with subs. mainly blue lasers though

my understanding is that there have been trials for multi carrier capability

eg short range defence and disruptor/weapons and DIRCM in the one system
Thanks very much for the information gents, it's appreciated.
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Old November 2nd, 2015   #74
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I don't necessarily agree it's "the answer".

There are still many things that can disrupt the kill chain for those many missiles assuming they can effectively locate, track, and get and maintain a successful firing solution. All of which the F35 is built to maximize.

Yes, do Russian fighters have higher load out, but that still doesn't necessitate success via higher tech aircraft IMO
Heh that's why I said "an" answer. Basically, considering the difference between USA and Russia in budget and general prowess of the military industry, there isn't much flexibility for the russians.

They will be stuck with flanker variants loooong after the F-35 goes fully operational and in mass production. Powerful radars and jamming-resistant BVR missiles fired in succession are an answer. And threatening the carrier group with a possible AShM saturation attack.

Now about these laz0rs ... aren't they dramatically dependent on the weather/clouds/humidity?
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Old November 2nd, 2015   #75
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Heh that's why I said "an" answer. Basically, considering the difference between USA and Russia in budget and general prowess of the military industry, there isn't much flexibility for the russians.

They will be stuck with flanker variants loooong after the F-35 goes fully operational and in mass production. Powerful radars and jamming-resistant BVR missiles fired in succession are an answer. And threatening the carrier group with a possible AShM saturation attack.

Now about these laz0rs ... aren't they dramatically dependent on the weather/clouds/humidity?
Something else to consider, is that the Russian (and before them, the Soviet) doctrine is to conduct long-ranged saturation attacks.

This in turn means that the US and NATO has doctrine to counter/minimize/neutralize such threats.

Having 'powerful' radar is all well and good, but unless the radar is able to reliably detect and track LO targets like the B-2, F-35, and F-22... Then saturation missile attacks are not all that useful. Especially since the on-board seeker in a missile is very unlikely to be more capable than what can be fitted aboard a fighter or AEW aircraft. And honestly, I doubt that the B-3 would fail to include LO capabilities of one sort or another.

One of the other issues which can plague saturation attack tactics, is the ability of the side launching the attack to spot the targets if using long-ranged munitions. Given that some of the Russian AShM's have ranges measured in the hundreds of n miles or more, either those same AShM's need to be able to self-target once they arrive into a target box, or the Russians will need to have some asset able to act as a spotter to guide the missiles in until their own guidance can take over.

While Russia does have aircraft like the Tu-95 which can perform such missions, they are not exactly subtle...
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