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Thread: New fighter plane-- madness?

  1. #1 New fighter plane-- madness? 
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    Just read this, the U.S. plans to buy 2443 of these aircraft, at average cost of close to $200 million each! Unless my blinkers are bonked, that sums up to 400 TRILLION dollars! I'm reluctant to read any further, it's a tremendously long story, but, isn't our total National Debt something like $ 18 trillion right now? What am I missing here? jocular



    Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


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    I get just shy of half a trillion bucks.


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    I just KNEW my math was hazy: 4224 X 200,000,000: Drop all the zeroes, 4224 X 2 = 8448, add back 8 zeroes: 844800000000, divide 'em into threes:

    844,800,000,000 so I guess I was just flipping out, so add a TRILLION bucks to an already staggering deficit? Glad you guys caught me at this ploy, you'd never 'of lived it down if I was right, right? joc
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    Quote Originally Posted by jocular View Post
    I just KNEW my math was hazy: 4224 X 200,000,000: Drop all the zeroes, 4224 X 2 = 8448, add back 8 zeroes: 844800000000, divide 'em into threes:
    Glad you guys caught me at this ploy, you'd never 'of lived it down if I was right, right? joc
    Quote Originally Posted by jocular View Post
    Just read this, the U.S. plans to buy 2443 of these aircraft, at average cost of close to $200 million each!
    I confused.
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  7. #6  
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    Quote Originally Posted by jocular View Post
    I just KNEW my math was hazy: 4224 X 200,000,000: Drop all the zeroes, 4224 X 2 = 8448, add back 8 zeroes: 844800000000, divide 'em into threes:

    844,800,000,000 so I guess I was just flipping out, so add a TRILLION bucks to an already staggering deficit? Glad you guys caught me at this ploy, you'd never 'of lived it down if I was right, right? joc
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  8. #7  
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    Quote Originally Posted by jocular View Post
    I just KNEW my math was hazy: 4224 X 200,000,000: Drop all the zeroes, 4224 X 2 = 8448, add back 8 zeroes: 844800000000, divide 'em into threes:

    844,800,000,000 so I guess I was just flipping out, so add a TRILLION bucks to an already staggering deficit? Glad you guys caught me at this ploy, you'd never 'of lived it down if I was right, right? joc
    Well, even it is half a trillion, I think that to answer your challenge about whether it is sensible, one should first have a look at Chinese military plans.

    I've felt similarly conflicted about Britain's Trident SLBM system. But it seems to me that in future nuclear power will be so vital to avoid global warming that it is inevitable there will be many more nuclear powers in the world. (Iran is just one current example: of course they are going to have a bomb - and who can blame them for wanting one, really.) So I have reluctantly come to the conclusion that a nuclear deterrent will be important in tomorrow's world - so we'd better keep one, in spite of the horrendous cost.

    These planes are for a different purpose, but there may similarly be a reasonable logic of security to it. Then again, I suppose it could be Eisenhower's Military-Industrial complex at work, providing pork-barrel jobs and profits in electorally important regions. Need a US citizen to comment on the ins and outs of that.
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  9. #8  
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    Quote Originally Posted by exchemist View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by jocular View Post
    I just KNEW my math was hazy: 4224 X 200,000,000: Drop all the zeroes, 4224 X 2 = 8448, add back 8 zeroes: 844800000000, divide 'em into threes:

    844,800,000,000 so I guess I was just flipping out, so add a TRILLION bucks to an already staggering deficit? Glad you guys caught me at this ploy, you'd never 'of lived it down if I was right, right? joc
    Well, even it is half a trillion, I think that to answer your challenge about whether it is sensible, one should first have a look at Chinese military plans.

    I've felt similarly conflicted about Britain's Trident SLBM system. But it seems to me that in future nuclear power will be so vital to avoid global warming that it is inevitable there will be many more nuclear powers in the world. (Iran is just one current example: of course they are going to have a bomb - and who can blame them for wanting one, really.) So I have reluctantly come to the conclusion that a nuclear deterrent will be important in tomorrow's world - so we'd better keep one, in spite of the horrendous cost.

    These planes are for a different purpose, but there may similarly be a reasonable logic of security to it. Then again, I suppose it could be Eisenhower's Military-Industrial complex at work, providing pork-barrel jobs and profits in electorally important regions. Need a US citizen to comment on the ins and outs of that.
    I say go for it for National Security...keep our fleets on the top edge of anyone's period.
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  10. #9  
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    The price tag is one thing, the fact that they are still having trouble getting these things to work properly is another thing. It's a pretty nice airplane though!
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  11. #10  
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    Quote Originally Posted by KALSTER View Post
    The price tag is one thing, the fact that they are still having trouble getting these things to work properly is another thing. It's a pretty nice airplane though!
    *singing*


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    My country (Ireland) is about 200 billion euro in debt, that should take us decades to pay off. We’ve a sum of 0 fighter jets in our air force. So to think that we could have ordered 1200 of those state of the art F-35 Lightings instead of a bit of bad banking makes me ill.

    The US has a deep pocket!
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    The problem with F-35 (apart from it being a PoS as I told LM 15-20 years ago) is that many countries are locked into it and that some overly-clever idiot wrote in massively punitive cancellation costs: in other words it would cost nearly as much to pull out of the programme as it would to continue.
    And at least if you continue you get some tin on the runway.
    Whether that tin does what it says it does on the paperwork 1 is a different question.
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    1 Non-Brits may not get the humour there.
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  14. #13  
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    Sure, we could buy these new fighter planes to fight third world nations for a dwindling resource or we could fund NASA at its present budget for a quarter century.

    Priorities. The United States has them all figured out.
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  15. #14  
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    488 billion, 600 million
    still a tidy chunk of change
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    Quote Originally Posted by pineapples View Post
    My country (Ireland) is about 200 billion euro in debt, that should take us decades to pay off. We’ve a sum of 0 fighter jets in our air force. So to think that we could have ordered 1200 of those state of the art F-35 Lightings instead of a bit of bad banking makes me ill.

    The US has a deep pocket!
    Yep. A deep pocket with a gaping hole in the bottom.
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  17. #16  
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    Quote Originally Posted by shlunka View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by pineapples View Post
    My country (Ireland) is about 200 billion euro in debt, that should take us decades to pay off. We’ve a sum of 0 fighter jets in our air force. So to think that we could have ordered 1200 of those state of the art F-35 Lightings instead of a bit of bad banking makes me ill.

    The US has a deep pocket!
    Yep. A deep pocket with a gaping hole in the bottom.
    not to worry shlunka
    when we're all dead, your generation will get to pay for this spending spree
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  18. #17  
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    Quote Originally Posted by pineapples View Post
    My country (Ireland) is about 200 billion euro in debt, that should take us decades to pay off. We’ve a sum of 0 fighter jets in our air force. So to think that we could have ordered 1200 of those state of the art F-35 Lightings instead of a bit of bad banking makes me ill.

    The US has a deep pocket!
    IMO, 200 million USD is a ridiculously high amount to pay for a single-engine airplane even if it DOES possess abilities allowing it to "hide". For that sum, the G.D.'d things could contain numerous parts made of precious metals! jocular
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  19. #18  
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    Quote Originally Posted by shlunka View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by pineapples View Post
    My country (Ireland) is about 200 billion euro in debt, that should take us decades to pay off. We’ve a sum of 0 fighter jets in our air force. So to think that we could have ordered 1200 of those state of the art F-35 Lightings instead of a bit of bad banking makes me ill.

    The US has a deep pocket!
    Yep. A deep pocket with a gaping hole in the bottom.
    That allows for the occasional game of "pocket-pool". joc
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  20. #19  
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    Quote Originally Posted by jocular View Post
    IMO, 200 million USD is a ridiculously high amount to pay for a single-engine airplane even if it DOES possess abilities allowing it to "hide". For that sum, the G.D.'d things could contain numerous parts made of precious metals! jocular
    It does have precious metals...and more costly composite materials.

    It's cost are not too out of line with other modern military aircraft either. (and half the cost of some modern commercial jets)

    I don't think the aircraft is necessarily the problem, we certainly need to replace our aging fleet of military aircraft so our pilots stop flying in planes older than they are. I wonder about the commitment to build so many though. The US Air Force could probably be half its size and still assure air superiority over any foreseeable enemy. And I think unmanned aircraft with increasingly better AI, and far more maneuverability and already replacing many manned aircraft rolls, will be able to take over the majority of mission by the end of the F35's production line.
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    Drone aircraft are fine as a supplement, but I have trouble seeing them replace manned aircraft as the primary force. The manufacturers of drones have a dirty little secret they take pains to see does not receive publicity. Drones are mainly operated by remote control, and require secure radio data links to operate. One glitch in the electronic security of those datalinks and those drones are now controlled by the enemy. It simply does not make any kind of sense to rely on them as a primary weapons system.
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    Quote Originally Posted by danhanegan View Post
    Drone aircraft are fine as a supplement, but I have trouble seeing them replace manned aircraft as the primary force.
    I don't. I has already happened with surveillance and precision small ordinance strikes--they are the primary weapon systems for those roles.

    There's is virtually no chance of enemy taking over a drone....the best they can do is jam it or destroy it or of course the its connection nod. It's the same choices with a manned aircraft.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by danhanegan View Post
    Drone aircraft are fine as a supplement, but I have trouble seeing them replace manned aircraft as the primary force.
    I don't. I has already happened with surveillance and precision small ordinance strikes--they are the primary weapon systems for those roles.

    There's is virtually no chance of enemy taking over a drone....the best they can do is jam it or destroy it or of course the its connection nod. It's the same choices with a manned aircraft.
    Didn't know that. Thanks for the information.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by danhanegan View Post
    Drone aircraft are fine as a supplement, but I have trouble seeing them replace manned aircraft as the primary force.
    I don't. I has already happened with surveillance and precision small ordinance strikes--they are the primary weapon systems for those roles.

    There's is virtually no chance of enemy taking over a drone....the best they can do is jam it or destroy it or of course the its connection nod. It's the same choices with a manned aircraft.
    The notion that any electronic security man can invent can't be circumvented by someone else is ludicrous. Jamming or destroying the drone is quite sufficient to render it useless.
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    Both Lynx_Fox and danhanagan make a good point.
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    Quote Originally Posted by danhanegan View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by danhanegan View Post
    Drone aircraft are fine as a supplement, but I have trouble seeing them replace manned aircraft as the primary force.
    I don't. I has already happened with surveillance and precision small ordinance strikes--they are the primary weapon systems for those roles.

    There's is virtually no chance of enemy taking over a drone....the best they can do is jam it or destroy it or of course the its connection nod. It's the same choices with a manned aircraft.
    The notion that any electronic security man can invent can't be circumvented by someone else is ludicrous. Jamming or destroying the drone is quite sufficient to render it useless.
    Any sufficient encryption is essentially uncrackable.
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    Quote Originally Posted by danhanegan View Post
    The notion that any electronic security man can invent can't be circumvented by someone else is ludicrous. Jamming or destroying the drone is quite sufficient to render it useless.
    Agreed - but that's also true of the airliner you are flying in. Fortunately the chances of that are low.
    Last edited by billvon; September 26th, 2013 at 08:06 AM.
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  28. #27  
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    if memory serves
    Iran disabled (and captured) a spy drone over their airspace by confusing it's gps navigation system a couple years ago?
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    Quote Originally Posted by sculptor View Post
    if memory serves
    Iran disabled (and captured) a spy drone over their airspace by confusing it's gps navigation system a couple years ago?
    More likely mechanical failure of some kind which Iran made stuff up about. GPS would be pretty easy to spoof, it hasn't been encrypted for more than decade and the signals are rather weak. On the other hand, our larger drones probably carry inertial guidance which is proven technology that's been around for more than 3 decades. If it has a GPS, it's probably a back up system.
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    AI would eliminate the need for remote communications. Of course that would mean armed AI's running around...
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    Quote Originally Posted by sculptor View Post
    if memory serves
    Iran disabled (and captured) a spy drone over their airspace by confusing it's gps navigation system a couple years ago?
    I believe that I read that, about 3 years ago that they did, but I do not remember why or how they managed to get it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by danhanegan View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Lynx_Fox View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by danhanegan View Post
    Drone aircraft are fine as a supplement, but I have trouble seeing them replace manned aircraft as the primary force.
    I don't. I has already happened with surveillance and precision small ordinance strikes--they are the primary weapon systems for those roles.

    There's is virtually no chance of enemy taking over a drone....the best they can do is jam it or destroy it or of course the its connection nod. It's the same choices with a manned aircraft.
    The notion that any electronic security man can invent can't be circumvented by someone else is ludicrous. Jamming or destroying the drone is quite sufficient to render it useless.
    It takes a long time to decrypt things. And lots of computing power.

    The main, serious vulnerability is an inside job. You don't need to hack the codes if some bright eyed young idealist without a lot of friends, and some debts to pay, is willing to simply give them to you.

    If a fighter pilot goes rogue, then you lose a plane. If a programmer goes rogue, you lose the whole project.
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    THis reminds me of The "T-35 TortureMAte 2000", the latest in torture technology, built to inflict maximum human suffering, but theres a catch, should we be outraged by its onerous cost? Or by it not being the latest tech around and possibly being made obsolete by the "Neural Agonizer 3000"? I wonder?
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    The american empire relies on a military domination over the world energetic ressources . In a way it's a good investment. Might is right, as they say..
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    Lot cheaper than an F-22, and just as capable. If you only fighting one small conflict, you don't need a lot. If you're fighting a major conflict and a couple of small ones, you're definitely better with greater numbers.
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  36. #35  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Delta Flyer View Post
    Lot cheaper than an F-22, and just as capable.
    You're kidding right?
    The F-35 is, when all's said and done, an updated F-105.
    F-35 unit cost $153M-$199 (depending on variant), F-22 unit cost $150M (all costs taken from the relevant Wiki pages), fewer weapons, nowhere near as stealthy (certainly from any angle other than head-on), a near-pitiful T:W ratio, considerably larger wing loading.
    We are talking about the aircraft that a RAND report summed up as "Can’t turn, can’t climb, can’t run", aren't we 1?
    The aircraft that is the textbook example of a multi-purpose design pitfall?

    In other words, it's neither cheaper (by even a little) NOR "just as capable".

    1 Apologies for the lack of link but it appears that the report is no longer available - much like the guy who wrote it.
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  37. #36  
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    It's all about the Eurofighter Typhoon
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChaosD.Ace View Post
    It's all about the Eurofighter Typhoon
    Ah, the Tiffie.
    80% of F-22's capability at ~60% of the cost.
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    Your from brittain, dude, you suposed to be cheering the Typhoon.
    Typhoon F-22
    Top speed 2,495 km/h 2,410 km/h
    Engine type Eurojet EJ200 Pratt & Whitney F119
    Range 3,790 km 2,960 km
    Manufacturer Eurofighter Boeing Defense, Space & Security,
    Lockheed Martin Aeronautics
    Length 16 m 19 m
    Weight 11,000 kg 19,700 kg
    Wingspan 11 m 14 m
    Cruise speed 1,838 km/h 1,963 km/h
    Introduced 2003 December 15, 2005

    http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headline...fights-report/

    http://eucitizens.eu/Forum/index.php?topic=166.0


    Also can any of you guys explain to me what range means when in reference to jet fighters?
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChaosD.Ace View Post
    Your from brittain, dude, you suposed to be cheering the Typhoon.
    I am.
    And so are USAF personnel who've seen it.
    And the Luftwaffe crews who ate F-22s with it in "combat". The best part about the German Typhoons beating F-22 is that the ones involved in that exercise weren't the latest version with all the upgrades: the Luftwaffe is behind the RAF on receiving upgrades.

    Also can any of you guys explain to me what range means when in reference to jet fighters?
    How far it will travel with a given fuel load (may or may not include external tanks), a sort of "one tank of gas" figure.
    At optimum speed and altitude - i.e. not at maximum speed nor with any combat manoeuvring.
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    One of the articles mention germans piloting typhoons.

    LOL
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChaosD.Ace View Post
    One of the articles mention germans piloting typhoons.
    LOL
    That would be the Luftwaffe!
    "[Dywyddyr] makes a grumpy bastard like me seem like a happy go lucky scamp" - PhDemon
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  43. #42  
    Theatre Whore babe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by ChaosD.Ace View Post
    One of the articles mention germans piloting typhoons.
    LOL
    That would be the Luftwaffe!
    Wow!! Haven't heard that reference for years!
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  44. #43  
    Genius Duck Moderator Dywyddyr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by babe View Post
    Wow!! Haven't heard that reference for years!
    Well I could have written "German Air Force", but Luftwaffe is shorter.
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  45. #44  
    Theatre Whore babe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by babe View Post
    Wow!! Haven't heard that reference for years!
    Well I could have written "German Air Force", but Luftwaffe is shorter.
    checking your wings and legs before take off
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