Tagarchief: Saab JAS 39 Gripen

A modest proposal for South East ASEAN own A2/AD

Before you ask… what is A2/AD …. no it’s not a new robot from Star Wars…. it stands for: Anti-access/Area denial. And it’s a big fancy way of saying… a layered defence organisation capable of restricting other nations (especially their military systems) to enter a specific area. for example your own territorial waters (near the Spratley islands….)

The term “Anti-access” (A2) means the action to hinder other nations’ power projection into a theater, while “Area denial” (AD) means the action to hinder other nations’ operation within a theater.

I wrote before about South-East Asia. Bluntly said these (now) peaceful countries are under threat of one big country… namely China. Which would like to incorporate the South China sea within their own territorial waters. Lately I wrote about the Philippines and how they are trying to beef up their military capabilities after years of neglecting and corruption they are bound to change this. Other countries in the South East Asia region are doing this to. They also have established a cooperation for the region. something like the EU. but not as powerful (economically) yet.

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations, or ASEAN, was established on 8 August 1967 in Bangkok, Thailand, with the signing of the ASEAN Declaration (Bangkok Declaration) by the Founding Fathers of ASEAN, namely Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore and Thailand.

Brunei Darussalam then joined on 7 January 1984, Viet Nam on 28 July 1995, Lao PDR and Myanmar on 23 July 1997, and Cambodia on 30 April 1999, making up what is today the ten Member States of ASEAN.

Island claimes SouthEast Asia Malacca-2

The defence cooperation is a part of this in the form of the ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting (ADMM).

The objectives of the ADMM, as outlined in the Concept Paper for the Establishment of an ADMM endorsed at the Inaugural ADMM in Kuala Lumpur on 9 May 2006, are as follows:

 

  • To promote regional peace and stability through dialogue and cooperation in defence and security;
    • To give guidance to existing senior defence and military officials dialogue and cooperation in the field of defence and security within ASEAN and between ASEAN and dialogue partners;
    • To promote mutual trust and confidence through greater understanding of defence and security challenges as well as enhancement of transparency and openness; and
    • To contribute to the establishment of an ASEAN Security Community (ASC) as stipulated in the Bali Concord II and to promote the implementation of the Vientiane Action Programme (VAP) on ASC
    .

On diverse blogs and forums you can read the signs that the cooperation between ASEAN nations is bound to increase and improve. In my opinion one of these areas which need to be addressed is the acquisition and (joint) development of military hardware. Adoption of joint operational doctrine and procedures (and training).

IMO only the strength and determination of these “smaller” countries together can deter the Chinese will to occupy this area.

Modest proposal
A modest proposal starts with the question what if I had a say in it? What should i do? Well there are some rumours about Saab at the moment. they are quietly delivering proposals to many countries. With attractive offers.

BbyrTYACMAIhk0H

Interesting news from #Indonesia : Since there is growing interest in South East Asia for what i call the “Thai approach” Im interested what Indonesia will make of this.

Rather than offering only the latest generation of its light, single engine Gripen jet fighter, Swedish defense and security giant Saab throws a complete set of air defense systems.

The offer also includes Erieye airborne early warning and control (AEW&C) for maritime surveillance and control; ground-based Command and Control; tactical data link to share data among various platforms; industrial cooperation, including transfer of technology and local production; and extensive job creation, reaching into the thousands.

The Thai approach
Also interesting of course is the offer to Malaysia and Vietnam as well. The Thai approach doesn’t only consist of a very capable fighter (already the C/D standard is internationally very modern and capable.) But also the Airborne Early Warning and Control (AEW&C) is a very powerful instrument for each country which would like their sovereignty be respected. And at rather low costs as well. I would also like to see the possibility of these countries. Interesting thing to note hear is that all these countries have made their interest clear to buy the (IPTN

ERIEYE_SAAB340

Reasoning behind this?
What if Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia,Vietnam and the Philipines, buy the same affordable Air Superiority fighter with outstanding Anti Ship capabilities (RBS15) + the Airborne Early Warning (and let’s say Maritime Patrol Aircraft versions) of each single country into one joint ASEAN network?

C-295 AEW Erieyeyourfile

CN295 in both transport and C-295 ASW / ASuW. If the Saab Erieye could be integrated on this platform it would safe these countries considerable costs – they already use this platform (not all but this would be possible because they need this transport platform to) To have a common fleet of Gripen Fighters but also a common fleet of Supporting aircraft (Transport – Tanker (just to name it) – MPA – AEW&C – EW/Intel) all combined in one basic platform. Besides the CN295 option there are of course other alternatives as well, each should be looked at their merits. If these countries can take the same Fighters and Supporting aircraft they can also integrate easily the very silent data link which make them more effective in a joint ASEAN vs China situation.

There are some downturns to this CN295 option though. Range and payload for example…. (not the same as an Orion or other real ASuW platform I read somewhere 11 hrs at a 200nm patrol range) But as these aircraft will be used mainly for national sovereignty missions (Air and Sea denial) this could be not a real point. the positive side would be that these aircraft are relative cheap to buy and operate. This means countries can spend more on their payloads (over platforms) which means they can acquire sophisticated Long range weapons, Meteor BVRAAM, etc. to deter an aggressive dominating country like China for example.

IMO only the strength and determination of these “smaller” countries together can deter the Chinese will to occupy this area. IMO this could be a very useful sign of jointness and an effective force….  A force which could make China think twice before it would really attack the region. these thought’s arent that strange. A Japanese Research fellow, Mr. Junichi Fukuda of the Institute for International Policy Studies(IIPS), suggests this same idea… and calls it “mini-A2/AD capabilities” .

The “mini-A2/AD capabilities” hinder the power projection of an adversary by using asymmetrical methods. This could thus be viewed as turning the tables on China for its posture towards the U.S. The “mini-A2/AD capabilities” represent even more vital capabilities for Japan than the U.S., given Japan’s particularly vulnerable position in geography. The principal challenges for Japan and the U.S. in the future would appear to be to efficiently allocate defense resources and to build and share strategies and operational concepts for conflict, according to the approach outlined above. For example, the former requires efforts to optimally allocate the defense resources based on the strategic priority, while the latter requires efforts to build and share a common strategy.

This should be a tool in the overall toolbox of Defence organisations together with boots on the ground, ships in (and under) the water. Only the you can protect your countries integrity and sovereignty.

In the end I come back to the Netherlands… and Europe. This same capability network and thus the ” mini-A2/AD capabilities” could be ours too. Making us less dependent on US And I think it can be done within cost, within timeframe and with enough numbers to be effective and…. deterrent!

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Saab Gripen E/F/G: the true modular force (soon available in Sea Gripen taste)

Everybody who reads DutchForce21 regularly knows that i am very positive about the Saab Gripen E/F proposal. This is based on my comparison (as far as possible based on public intel) but also on the logical assumptions / goals i have for the DutchForce21 concept.

breakingthecostcurve_Eng_700

  • As i stated such a force should be expeditionary in nature.
  • Be cost effective
  • consist of enough units and (weapon) systems to operate effectively.
  • And most importantly, I imagine a future where the fighting will be about… oil and rare earth materials.. Our current western societies can’t live without them.

GripenENLoh0pat

(We therefore need a force which can deploy fast (but short) to support especially maritime domain to escort and secure (Dutch / European) Merchant vessels on their way back from the world to our port’s of … Rotterdam or vice versa. We need a maritime focused defence force but not only the vessels. We also need maritime patrol aircraft, good and enough helicopters or other rotorcraft and… yes.. a Expeditionary capable fighter.. which doesn’t need a luxurious Main Operating base with all the acclimatized hangars (to protect the aircraft as in the case of the JSF)  As this must / should be done in the most “green” way… Why should a country invest in a military to secure fuel and raw materials…. if that same military would “eat” (consume) all these things which are also needed by society?

“Why should a country invest in a military to secure fuel and raw materials…. if that same military would “eat” (consume) all these things which are also needed by society?”

LM is good in Public relations
Many JSF fans and parrots who just are repeating what they heard from Lockheed Martin’s Public Relations division (a muli billion company i can imagine because all the faults, all the problems and all future  scams… need a lot of talking (like Brugman) to convince politicians, and our interested civilians that the only alternative is the JSF. Only the JSF can do…… blabla. And the 5th generation…. (nonsense)

JSF-AMRAAM-490x277

The JSF isn’t multi-role, Result: Ill equipped Dutch Armed forces
But we now know that the JSF, can’t fight a dog  (as in dogfight) they aren’t that good in supporting our ground forces (Combat Air Support) the JSF F35A is armed with 182 25mm bullets. For a 4 barrel canon firing 3000 rounds a minute.. this is only enough ammo for 3,64 seconds.

Besides this I really would be honest to raise the claim that in a cost/benefit analysis (I know… purely hypothetical and without any emotions…. Just like some politicians right?) could it be possible that it would be too expensive to risk the loss of one (of the 35 + 2 testaircraft) JSF vs a (let’s say a platoon which where deprived of their integrated heavy weapons (LR Guided Weapons like TOW, heavy Mortars, used to be a Bataljon asset now it’s heavy artillery) to give a few examples. All these measures were taken because of the promise that there always will be Combat Air Support available.. what if? (+ almost 200 – 300 million Euro’s a piece vs. the (financial) cost to cope with some casualties? Not an option? Why do you think politics is called dirty?

Back to the JSF
The only things they are good for, from a Dutch point of view are… Intelligence gathering, strategic bombing (if enemy radar/IRST are outdated) and buying US soldiers to die for our needs. (because that’s what the JSF is ultimately about. We buy ourselves: the Support and protection by our US Allies – as promised. Unfortunately the US government and their “bread masters” (the same as with TTIP) the US Global Internationals don’t always serve our interests. Of course this is the same with our European allies…. but there is one single interest all European countries share… we live on the same continent which is under threat at the moment.

“But there is one single interest all European countries share… we live on the same continent which is under threat at the moment.”

The best option available
I propose the Saab Gripen fighter which would become available with many different future options. and to certain extend the Netherlands would/could/should become a big partner in this program.

We would have the standard E and F versions. But as we know now the Brazilians are also looking for an Aircraft Carrier capable fighter: the Sea Gripen. (based on E/F developments).

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They say…. steel is cheap
To be really honest, an aircraft carrier for the Netherlands in first sight looks like a step too far. But Personally I think there are certain things about Carrier development which look like they are that expensive on purpose… to earn money for the developers. Not to deliver as much capability as possible for the best price. I’m really interested how the Brazilian military will develop their new carrier.  I know of certain technologies which could be implied for example instead of the New US Catapult system (EMALS) there is a improved version of the current system possible. if they only would invest (a relative) small amount in that development. Besides operating our own carrier I suppose we could also opt for operating carrier capable aircraft in cooperation with our French, Brazilian and US allies. Being a true trustworthy partner with that.

BSAC185

The Gripen E/F already has a promising EW/INTEL gathering capability proposed. As I quoted before the option to combine the AESA radar with the IRST and IFF sensor systems make it an incredible system also claimed capable of tracking (enemy) Stealth targets.  Also the weapons currently integrated on the C/D and future E/F are interesting and capable. Like Meteor and RBS15 MKIII. Some future systems proposed (like a Meteor Anti-Radiation variant) or a RBS15 MK IV a missile with possible 1000km range)  are very interesting future developments.

And now there is this new development I would like to share…..

Meanwhile, long-term commercial plans are assessing the viability of converting a variant of Gripen into an electronic warfare (EW) variant similar to how Boeing has adapted the F/A-18F Super Hornet into the EA-18G Growler.

“If you look into future combat scenarios, if you have a high-end air force with a broad threat situation, something like a ‘Growler Gripen’ would make a real difference,” Sindahl said.

“That‘s what we’re looking into, and that’s why it’s so good to have Brazil on board with the F-model.”

GripenFARP imagesCA3MIC9T

So we have an expeditionary, cost effective modular fighter, which makes it possible to buy enough of them, to operate them well within O&S budget which will also address the SEAD/DEAD needs of our Defence force?    Oh boy, Will those Air Force guys ever learn what they did to our Armed Forces and to greater extend our ability as a nation to act sovereign?  The political leadership destroyed the whole Armed forces (which used to be equipped in a multi-role way, A toolbox with overlapping capabilities) in favor of an aircraft which promised a lot, but in the end will damage our own interests. Why, tell me why the US would always keep our interests in mind and weight them evenly important as they do with their own (national) interests? Why? NOT.

I propose a new future look into what the Dutch military really needs. What kind of force structure is needed? What kind of weapons are needed to create a protected force capable and effective. I think a sustainable “green” fighting force which uses less (natural) resources will be best. I think Gripen E/F/G and Sea Gripen (also in E/F/G options) would be key in such a future force!

And A Dutch Aircraft carrier (or two) is a dream as long as it’s a dream! It could become reality if the politicians and force planners would decide to do so.. without selling increasing the price and wanting to develop the wheel themselves. And most importantly the Military industry has a supportive and facilitating role.. they should earn their fair amount of money doing so, but in the end, the interests of the (Dutch) people is key!  In the mean time I will try to develop the DutchForce alternative force plan. with a financial chapter. (if i have time)

How can Air Force guys (and girls) be so ignorant? they use the OODA Loop… don’t they?

This article follows up to one i wrote before.. The document a USAF test pilot wrote after some dog-fight tests against a 20 year old F-16 D with full drop tanks under-wing against a totally clean JSF. First a short introduction and then some links to articles about this test document.

Ofcourse as usual the explanations and denials came promptly. The JPO said not to worry, it was an “old” AF-2 airframe “designed” for testing. besides that a lot of bullshit.. like this testaricraft didn’t have stealth coating, not the right sensors e.g.

Aircraft AF-2 did not have the mission systems software to use the sensors that allow the F-35 to see its enemy long before it knows the F-35 is in the area. Second, AF-2 does not have the special stealth coating that operational F-35s have that make them virtually invisible to radar. And third, it is not equipped with the weapons or software that allow the F-35 pilot to turn, aim a weapon with the helmet, and fire at an enemy without having to point the airplane at its target.

The whole JSF lobby looks like acting more and more like  someone with borderline.

Borderline personality disorder (BPD), also known as emotionally unstable personality disorder – impulsive or borderline type or emotional intensity disorder, is a cluster-B personality disorder. The essential features include a pattern of impulsivity and instability of behaviors, interpersonal relationships, and self-image. The pattern is present by early adulthood and occurs across a variety of situations and contexts.[1]

Other symptoms usually include intense fears of abandonment, intense anger, and irritability, the reason for which others have difficulty understanding.[1][2] People with BPD often engage in idealization and devaluation of others, alternating between high positive regard and great disappointment. [3]Self-harm, suicidal behavior, and substance abuse are common.[4]

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Let’s be honest… most of the things above (made bold) we have seen and heared in all participating countries. the fighter pilots and other (mosty) Airforce officers i communicated with (verbal, e-mail, LinkedIn forum, Twitter discussions) are all related back to this kind of thinking…

I   AM  SUPERIOR

short explanation is required i think:

self-image: They (the JSF lobbyists) see that they know best, they are the ones knowing what will come in a future battlefield. They know that there will be no radar or any other system which will see and track the JSF. They also know that a JSF doesn’t need to be used for Dog fights. And ofcourse the gun with only 182 rounds is good enough for CAS….. And ofcourse they are superior:)

idealization and devaluation of others: They lie, and tell halve truth’s about the JSF and about alternative aircraft. They claimed for example that there where flying 100dreds of JSF already… but all are in a devastating state… they all need upgrades to become sort of operational available. None of those 100+ JSF are operational and let’s not forget expeditionary available. At the same time they said the Gripen E was a paper plane… and in the same letter to Dutch Parliament (for example) that the Gripen E was an old aircraft (they actually suggested that the age of an airplane depends on the period of designing it.. instead of the age of the air-frame. At the same time we can state that in that case the Gripen C/D is of a younger generation than the JSF. they are working on that one for many, many years now. and a lot to coe.

Another aspect of this behavior is that they devaluate people with other opinions.. or questions they don’t want or can’t answer. Look here, second part of the article about OODA loop.They are the specialists, they know best. they suggest I’m anti America and communist, they suggest I earn money from Saab as i seem to know a lot about that. I once even was threatened by someone living near my home that he knew where to find me…. (And we aren’t talking about some hobbyists like myself. no, they are trained fighter pilots, military officers (officer = gentlemen?) politicians industrialists and lobyists of the JSF lobby-group NIDV in the Netherlands.

Self-harm, suicidal behavior, and substance abuse are common: I take these three together because they belong together. What they underestimate is that they in my opinion act like traitors to the Dutch people (not only the pilots / RNLAF people like this) but also some industrialists who lurk money $$$$, some politicians who want new positions in their old boys network. They sell our interests for 37 JSF. our whole defense needed to lose money because politicians saw it for free. but yet the JSF stayed alive. Failure after failure, delay after delay (they event blamed parliament for these delays … because they didn’t decide yet.. but the real delays are with the US producers and testers isn’t it? from the Wikileaks we learned that the US was better informed by Dutch (pro JSF) politicians and military/civilian government personnel than the Dutch parliament was informed. They even asked the US to pressure minister Wouter Bos (Labour party) to buy the aircraft.. he didn’t.

They don’t care how much the JSF will cost on buying, and operation and sustainment. as long as they can play with it. fully integrated in US support, training and operations. I claim that we can only operate our air force as long as the US wants us to do so. they own “our” JSF EW database, the source code for software and ALIS. they share on a need to know basis. They even will make a US only and a “outsiders” manual. why? And still the JSF is the best? They not only harm themselves.. when it comes to a fight and the US backs off (Srebrenica, West-Papua, or what about when we must fight for the Americans while we don’t think it’s a just war (Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan.. future)? what repercussions will follow?  All this while our most important interests lie at home. In the Netherlands… in Europe… right that old continent. The abuse is clear, they abuse fear, money peoples interests, least of all they abuse the total defense budget. as stated earlier. budget for JSF will be topped up, and the future operational and sustainment (O&S) costs will increase from 275 to 285.. at the beginning of it’s service live! Abusive. the rest of the branches will run out of blood.

Now the articles:

David Axe – War is Boring:  Read for Yourself — The F-35’s Damning Dogfighting Report Test pilot reveals stealth fighter’s vulnerability

Joseph Trevithick – War is Boring:  When Is the F-35 Not a Dogfighter? When It’s Convenient: Lockheed and the Pentagon keep moving the goalposts

David Axe – War is Boring:  The U.S. Air Force Promised the F-4 Would Never Dogfight: Now it’s saying the same thing about the F-35

Bill Sweetman – Aviation Week: Behind That F-35 Air Combat Report

As always this article of Bill Sweetman is very clear and shows the truth.

OODA loop or (OO)DA loop?

These weeks in the Netherlands the Dutch Fighter replacement program will be speeded up for decision in parliament.  the D-brief will be talked about in the parliamentary defence commission and in a couple of weeks there will be another debate. But then the road will be open for the government to decide. eventhough no fixed price has been give and the used numbers and dollar exchange rate (US$ 0,7630 currently 0,88) has been one of a kind. In fact the 5 hard questions which should be answered before the PvdA (Labour) will give its go ahead hasn’t been mentioned anymore.

ALSO € 270 milion a year…. but then for just only 37 airframes. Oh now, we won’t make it.. the Dutch Minister of Defence raised the O&S cost to about 285 a year. OOOPS, this PvdA demand won\t make it. But what about the following: These 285 a year are the starting point of the Lifespan of the JSF whereas the F16’s are on the end of their life.  Is their anybody accounting this in parliament? No veto mr. Samsom?

Five requirements of the Labour Party

The road seems pretty for the government to purchase the JSF or the F-35. It should be there just met five requirements of the Labour Party. It is for Samson the “crucial question” whether you have 37 devices can perform the international missions you want to do.

Furthermore, the fighters may not be more expensive and “they must continue to meet the expectations that we have been held up.” If it is different, “the party does not go through.”Furthermore, the noise should be limited and the project needs more work for our country, preferably double what is currently expected.

None of them could be answered with a possitive answer though.

  1. It is clear that with just 35+2 test JSF you can;t properly operate an air force with all the required tasks. They now depend on cooperation with Belgium in order to succeed. They can operate a minimum number of aircraft and a very minimal number of pilots.
  2. The fighters are more expensive and the MoD counts with a unrealistic dollar exchange rate as shown above. There are many uncertainties which shouldn’t be uncertain after more than 10 years of planning, testing and production. This issue is specificaly interesting because not only is the aquisistion price unclear and falsely give to the parliament (on the one hand they say it will cost a certain ammount, on the other hand they say they don’t know. Strange thing is the prices are much lower even the USAF itself will pay for not to mention other partnercountries like Denmark Australia, and Canada e.g.) Beside the aquisition there is a strange thing going on with the exploitation costs (= Operation and Systainment=O&S) The RNLAF, not so long ago, complaint about the current F16 fighters they where becomming obsolete, and to expensive to operate. Why, They where / are at the end of their lifespan and the costs for keeing them up and running are much higher than it used to be… The current level is estimated at about € 270 a year for 68 fighters operating from 2 MOB’s Main operating bases Leeuwarden and Volkel estimated at about180 flight hrs a year each. The funny thing is that the proposed 35 + 2 JSf will cost the Dutch taxpayers ALSO € 270 milion a year…. but then for just only 37 airframes. Oh now, we won’t make it.. the Dutch Minister of Defence raised the O&S cost to about 285 a year. OOOPS, this PvdA demand won\t make it. But what about the following: These 285 a year are the starting point of the Lifespan of the JSF whereas the F16’s are on the end of their life.  Is their anybody accounting this in parliament? No veto mr. Samsom?
  3. The expectations of the PvdA where low, Ms. Eijsink has always been critical and she has stated more then once that she new of the fact that the technical requirements of the JSF had been downgraded time and time again. so what technical expectations is the PvdA thinking of?
  4. Noise is still not clear, there are some tests promised though, but that would be wll after the decision is taken, during 2016….
  5. More work for our countries industries?  well that is funny, they can’t promise us that, our industry has to fish to get the orders for the best price deals. (lowest possible.) As stated earlier Fokker has some orders ongoing but they all are follow-on orders, and a lot of that work will be done in the Fokker in Turkey. right. The same for engine overhaul and maintenance which will also be done in Turkey and Italy. later on maybe in the Netherlands.

There where asked many questions, but the minister and ministry don’t even have to answer them correctly. In the end they can do whatever they want…. there is a majority who will give the JSF the go ahead. That doesn’t depend on truth and honesty, that doesn’t depend on the need to buy the military (all military) the right equipment in enough numbers and affordable enough the USE it in real live. No the great benefit of democracy is that the only thing important is a majority in parliament. That’s the real painful truth. and those parliamentarians doesn’t need to have one key goal; serving the Dutch people. no, some are serving their own interest, or the interests of certain shareholders. Not you and me, nut some shareholders of big (US companies. (remember Fokker is in the hands of an American corporation not Dutch owned)

“The hook is in”

Lees verder

The same old story over and over again

The NOS (Dutch Broadcasting Organisation) has the following story. On television they show a big smiling Maxime Verhagen, former minister of Foreign Affairs (CDA) now appointed as special representative to get as many orders on the JSF program as possible for Dutch industry. Of course he is very positive but he also exaggerates enormously about the possible values.  Some of the “facts” of this broadcast:

  • 27 Dutch companies have made it to generate work from the JSF program (0:22)
  • Fokker: for 40 JSF per year they build parts (0:26)
  • Aeronamic has an order ( worth € 220 milj) work for at least 50 people (0:32)
  • There will be more work, € 8 to € 9 billion with hundreds of jobs. (0:36)
  • Maxime Verhagen: After building there also will come future contracts for the maintenance work also worth € 10 to € 20 billion

I would like to ask Mr. Verhagen some key questions: On what grounds where those prognoses based? These where the figures based on the business case of the Dutch Air Force buying 85 JSF not 37. But are those still appropriate?

Another quote of mr Verhagen: If you don’t invest.. you won’t receive anything. (0:45)

Can we expect the US to give us the same amount of orders? What about some non-partner-nations willing to acquire the JSF with demands of large production participation? Like Japan, South-Korea and Israel? Howe come they didn’t invest a billion euro’s in this program and still receive orders far more wort than ours? While they even order in the same amount of aircraft (around 40 each?) And what about those figures and orders we see sometimes in the Dutch News. Stories about new orders, signature signing of orders. All celebrated but not always clear if it’s a new one… or one already arranged long time ago… but celebrated as a new victory (for marketing purposes of course),

Repeating old contracts and framework agreements with each small successor agreement, if re-extracted billions turnover ……….

The annual PV F16 allow hitherto SALES tens of millions to the recognition of the “JSF Business Case” (which is not MARGIN = value) show per year.

Super nice of course …….

But Aeronamic works for Airbus; and work would have been if we DO NOT buy the JSF; simply because they are innovative.

Fokker / STORK  

October 2009
THE HAGUE – Stork Fokker’s flaperons, movable flaps on the wings, producing for American combat unit JSF. For this purpose, Tuesday (October 6) signed a contract with aircraft manufacturer Lockheed Martin.

(and even at least 4 times, and so on)

Aeronamic (part of the work is outsourced to Romanian branch)

November 17, 2010
Aeronamic has a contract for the supply of the so-called Air Management System for Turbomachinery energy on board the aircraft.

May 2013
Honeywell, a company that for years Aeronamic Siezen recent works, signed an agreement for the construction of Terminal Power Management Systems (PTMs) for half of the total number of building F-35’s. “The system regulates the energy system aboard the new American fighter. It is an order of 500 to 600 million and provides 50 to 60 of our people for thirty years working on “The deal goes through, but under one condition., The Dutch government should proceed to purchase the F-35. “How many devices they buy does not matter. If only they buy. “

July 2014
Production of 220 million and 50 men work.

How often do we have to repeat this??

I would like to recommend an article by Krijn Schramada of the revealing Follow The Money website: JSF industry consider themselves rich with turnover.

A big week for JSF (and their fanboys & girls)…. Or not?

From the previous intro I now want to go to the Farnborough International Air show (FIA) which took place last week in the United Kingdom.

Farnborough International Air show 
A lot of headlines and rumours, a lot of working hours for the Marketing gurus of Lockheed Martin, the Pentagon and other related companies worldwide. It promised to be the highlight of the year, and the moment everybody… well not exactly everybody… dreamed of the last 10 to 20 years. Year after year had gone by, but every year no show for the already (operational) flying JSF. But this year was different: The dream would come true. For LM a true victorious moment celebrated by media and printed promotion. They even taken care of hanging posters in London subway stations to showcase the first European flight demo of the promising JSF. All things where arranged to welcome the true fighter of all fighters to Europe…..

The JSF should have moved from Eglin Air Force base all the way to Europe to entertain the believers there on three occasions. The convoy – Yes you can speak of a convoy – with a pair of KC10 tankers, at least one KC130J tanker, and a C-17 to escort 4 fighters across the Atlantic. The 4 JSF need to refuel around 10-12 times each during their crossing, should have arrived on Fairford (a Big US airbase with all necessary security) in the first week of July. They Didn’t!

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The JSF and her big Marketingteam did mis more than one show. First the launching ceremony of the too big, too fat and too badly equipped new British Super Landing Helicopter Dock ships.

QE-class Landing Helicopter Dock (LHD) ships
If they were Aircraft carriers they should have been equipped with Cat’s & traps like proper carriers (the French, Brazilian and US way) with enough budget to buy enough carrier capable fighters. Or the other way around, enough fighters for a reasonable price like the F/A  Super Hornet, the French Rafale or a new breed the Sea Gripen.  I say the other way around because yes Cats&Traps maybe more expensive to buy than the STOVL launching pad on the super LHD. But the other thing is. The aircraft to operate from such a Carrier can be more cheap than the current choice: the JSF F35B. Beside the over expensive aircraft, the UK also can count on much higher Operation & Sustainment costs, lower Sortie generation rates and last but surely not least: more and extensive higher costs to ship infrastructure because of the enormous heat on the deck. In short, the choice of the STOVL variant by the British MoD, was and still is a false one. Biased and the use of improper arguments. They didn’t include all the relevant costs, they compared the price of building the Carrier on a STOVL basis versus extra costs of fitting Cats&Traps without looking into the other relevant costs. They also neglected to look at the consequences for operational availability – and very important –cooperation with both the US Navy and the French navy with which the British Prime minister says it will have far reaching defence cooperation…. Without the possibility to cooperate on joint aircraft carrier operations…. How dumb.  For more info on these arguments I recommend a series of articles by my colleague of Safe the royal navy.

Fairford Air show
Besides the naming ceremony of the launching of the Queen Elizabeth vessel, the JSF also missed the Royal Air Tattoo at Fairford Airbase.. the place where the JSF Convoy would have landed and stayed during the trip because it currently is one of the largest US airbases in Great Britain… with all necessary security and facilities which are needed to support such a fine aircraft.

But to get back on the JSF appearance during this event. Couple of days before this great occasion to show the aircraft to the public, the JSF had a very interesting malfunction… no an accident to be honest.  Again the issue was on the F135 engine. Read this summary.

F-35A with extensive engine fire at Eglin – June 2014

On Monday June 23, 2014 at 9:15 p.m. a F-35A, assigned to the 33rd Fighter Wing, 58th Fighter Squadron at Eglin Air Force Base, caught fire as the instructor pilot, was taking off as part of a two-ship formation for a continuation training mission. First reports told the “significant fire” originated in the tail of the aircraft, mentioning it a Class-A (big) incident.

The pilot successfully shut down the plane and escaped unharmed and the fire was extinguished with foam by a ground crew. The aircraft involved is the AF-27, s/n 10-5015, a LRIP-4 series aircraft that made its first flight on April 22, 2013 and was delivered on May 29, 2013 to the US Air Force. The F-35A was towed to a hangar. Accident investigators have collected any related foreign object debris at the same hangar for review.

There is a company who finally did – what they should have done long time ago. Saab nailed the remaining parts of Lockheed Martin and here 5th generation fighter to the wall, and throwing daggers at it. Each dagger reached their target swiftly and decisively.

Just one picture to help you start thinking… if you didn’t do that already. Why the 5th Generation is nonsense.

FIA Saab slide 8

This article isn’t meant to make fun of the JSF…. No to the contrary. I am sad that the influence of marketeers in our society is so big… and influential, they even are able to change truth, change facts, and let the bad guys win even if they lose every war, They blow every chance to deliver what they promised. And always find something or someone to blame. And always they are right with their “concurrency” and High quality superior program management principles. They still sell us that same old story that, every big (weapons) program will have these kind of setbacks. Well they don’t … not with normal Program management and smart development methods. And with reasonable set Performance goals (KPI’s) But hey… If Lockheed Marketing sells us a straight banana than it’s straight right?

How can we still live in such a society? Where big words and promises are more worth than delivery of promises, on time, on schedule, within budget and according to preset Key Performance Indicators and quality standards?  A new blog of mine will point out how things where shown in the Netherlands by Dutch Broadcasting organization.

Stay tuned!

5th generation……. fighters? theory or practice?

Bill Sweetman wrote a very interesting article about the (future) capabilities of the Saab Gripen E sensor suite… the most important are three Selex-ES sensors. Please read his article thoroughly: “Gripen Sensors Claim Counter-Stealth Performance

First there is the Raven ES-05 active, electronically scanned array radar (AESA) mounted on a “repositioner,” a rotating mount that gives the radar a ±100-deg. field of view around the nose. The second sensor is a Skyward-G infrared search and track (IRST) system. The third sensor is a new identification friend-or-foe (IFF) system with three electronically steerable antenna arrays, which matches the radar’s range and field of view.

GripenENL

A lot of this information, which was available on the internet for some time now, should have found its way to e.g. the Dutch ministry of Defence which held an F16 Fighter Replacement program “update” based on Public domain info only. This document: “Report Actualisation Program F16 Replacement (rapport actualisatie Vervanging F16) was the basis for the government coalition of Labour(PvdA) and Liberals (VVD). In their coalition accord they did mention that they wanted to decide about the Fighter Replacement by the end of 2013… (while there is no practical reason for this… the RNLAF follows the same path like ” JSF partnercountry Denmark” which also will decide in 2015… thats the real decision point.. but hey, the discussions and rumors about this “Hot Iron” are from the polticial discussion table,,. verry handy if you consider the comming local council elections (tommorow 19th March) and the European Parliament Elections (22th of May). So this decission is “understandable”. But….. they based their decision on…. Poorly or selectively googled Open Source Intelligence (OSINT)… and their (overestimated) “factual” knowledge of the Joint Strike Fighter program….  I wrote about that several times before…

The strange thing is that there was no one in Dutch Parliament who asked the relevant questions and raised awareness about the “authority” of this document, namely rubbish!

How on earth is it possible that a Democratic elected government based its total future Defence policy (yes; total policy because with every defence cut and abolishment of defence capabilities the steadfast answer is: Airpower will fix that loss….)  completely on a document selectively or poorly googled… And nobody in or outside the coalition did question the “weight of this document…. Nobody asked how come the other contenders had there “conversation” with the MoD but didn’t get the possibility to deliver the latest official technical status reports of their respective fighter aircraft.

JSF-AMRAAM-490x277

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