Aug 212017

A P-51, an A-10 and an F-22 flying in formation over Chicago.

 Posted by at 10:38 am
  • publiusr

    The flyboys did something cool for once.

    Now–it’s the USN that seems to be having problems
    I chalked up the collision involving the USS Fitzgerald was just that Fitz name jinxed with the Gitche Gumee


    A “collision of the USS John S. McCain (cough) off Singapore that left 10 sailors missing.

    “In addition, the guided-missile cruiser USS Lake Champlain collided with a South Korean fishing vessel on May 9 off the Korean Peninsula and the guided-missile cruiser USS Antietam ran aground Jan. 31 in Tokyo Bay, near its home port of Yokosuka, Japan.”


    • James

      Not sure but i’d say spending more damn time on SJW courses and less on navigation and piloting might be part of the problem.

      Though with the Antietam it was apparently just badly labeled charting of the region. Basically someone didn’t do the necessary mapping of the area like they should have.

      • publiusr

        Strange how these incidents happen now that a Space Force is on the horizon and needs its own funding.

        “Oh don’t cut us–we need more money or these accidents keep happening.”
        That’s one conspiracy anyway.

        I actually have the much mocked book HOW TO AVOID HUGE SHIPS.

        It is actually a good read.

  • Law

    Do you have any thoughts on the current debate over whether to retire the A-10? My impression has been that the A-10 has been considered unsurvivable in high-intensity conflicts since the 1980s (when it was slated for replacement by an A-7 derivative). Perhaps it might be useful in low-intensity ones, but the Air Force’s argument that a turboprop would be more suitable seems reasonable. On the other hand, a specialized CAS aircraft guarantees the availability of air support to ground forces, while multirole aircraft might be tasked with other, more pressing (to the Air Force) missions instead.

    • Scottlowther

      Given my druthers and dictatorial powers, I’d retire the existing A-10 fleet just as soon as possible. However, “as soon as possible” would be just as soon as the A-10 production lines could be restarted to produce a new line of wholly updated A-10s with new engines, improved alloys and *optional* advanced electronic and avionics. There’d be USAF specific versions with all the bells and whistles, including remotely piloted/autonomous versions. There’d be US Army and Marine Corps versions (screw the Miami agreement) dedicated to troop support. There might even be a navalized version for the Navy for carrier use.

      Start the production run with 2,000 airframes, and see where things stand after that. Export version for Israel and Britain and Poland and the like. VTOL versions with tilting main engines and lift jets in an extended forward fuselage because it’d be cool, if not exactly practical.

      • Law

        Hmm… 1980s papers seem to declare that the A-10 airframe lacks maneuverability for SAM evasion. But I get your point. Replacement with a dedicated, survivable, high-intensity-conflict CAS aircraft.

    • MzUnGu

      With today’s technology of all these targeting pods, sensor and optics, I don’t really see a point of the plane staying close to the ground like the envision A-10 mission for CAS. Everything on the ground is a blur when you are close to the ground at that speed, maybe a naked eye can ID a tank as friendly or foe, but as enemy combatants are concern, I don’t think it is very effective platform when there is no clear/straight front-line. I was watching some simulated A-10 CAS missions on youtube, and 9 out of 10 times the pilot is looking at the cockpit display for targeting and IFF, not much different than what you can do with a F-16.

      With the 60-70s budget, it might make sense to keep multiple platforms, but with just minor local conflict, I think the bean counter side of the Pentagon would like to just maintain a few multi-role aircraft. keep in mind that( I remember reading) 80-90% of the CAS mission in Afg and Iraq was done with F-16/B-1/F-15.

      • Scottlowther

        I’m not a solider on the ground, but I’ve heard a whole lot of ’em praise the A-10 that came in and kicked the ass of the bad guys who were in real close.

        What the soldiers want, the soldiers get, I sez.

        • MzUnGu

          I think that is more anecdotal than anything. With 90% of all CAS done by other aircraft, pretty sure you can find 9X more quotes from other solders.