US Military News, Reports, Data, etc.


Jeff Head

General
Staff member
Super Moderator
7 US agressor units :

USN
VFC-12, Oceana 10 F/A-18 A+, 2 F/A-18B
VFC-111, Key West 17 F-5N, 1 F-5F
VFC-13, Fallon 13 F-5E 3 F-5F 8 F-5N
NSWAV Agressors, Fallon 14 F-16N in fact A block 15

USMC
VMFT-401, Yuma 12 F-5E/F/N

USAF
64 Agressor Sqn, Nellis 20 F-16C block 25/32 + 5 F-15C/D of former 65th agr stand down 09/2014 had 19 F-15
18 Agr Sqn, Eielson, 18 F-16C/D block 30
So, the US has and maintains:

52 F-5E/F/Ns
52 F-16C/D/Ns
12 F-18s
24 F-15s

Purely for aggressor squadrons.

Just shows how much value the US gets out of these exercises. 140 jet aircaft maintain to keep the hundreds of others always on their toes!
 

FORBIN

Lieutenant General
Registered Member
2 new names and the list is full right now :)

U.S. Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus announced the names for two new Arleigh Burke-class destroyers in a ceremony at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium on September 17.
DDG 125, will be named Jack H. Lucas in honor of the Marine Corps hero and Medal of Honor recipient while DDG 126 would be named Louis H. Wilson Jr. in honor of the 26th commandant of the Marine Corps who was also a Medal of Honor recipient.
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Flight IIA Restart
PCU John Finn (DDG 113), Under construction (Ingalls Shipbuilding) expected in September 2016
PCU Ralph Johnson (DDG 114), Under construction (Ingalls Shipbuilding) expected in January 2017
PCU Rafael Peralta (DDG 115), Under construction (Bath Iron Works) expected in July 2016 or 2017

Flight IIA Technology Insertion

PCU Thomas Hudner (DDG 116), Under construction (Bath Iron Works) expected in May 2017
PCU Paul Ignatius (DDG 117), Under construction (Ingalls Shipbuilding) expected in January 2018
PCU Daniel Inouye (DDG 118), Under construction (Bath Iron Works) expectedin November 2018
Delbert D. Black (DDG 119), Contract awarded (Ingalls Shipbuilding) expected in July 2019
Carl M. Levin (DDG 120), Contract awarded (Bath Iron Works) expected in January 2020
Frank E. Petersen Jr. (DDG 121)
John Basilone (DDG 122)
Lenah H. Sutcliffe (DDG 123)

Flight III
Harvey C. Barnem Jr. (DDG 124)
Jack H. Lucas (DDG 125)
Louis H. Wilson Jr (DDG 126)
 

FORBIN

Lieutenant General
Registered Member
So, the US has and maintains:

52 F-5E/F/Ns
52 F-16C/D/Ns
12 F-18s
24 F-15s

Purely for aggressor squadrons.

Just shows how much value the US gets out of these exercises. 140 jet aircaft maintain to keep the hundreds of others always on their toes!

Only " special " fleet for F-16Ns and F-5s in agressors units only 2 types, variants exclusively for these mission others included in the total.

Total 56 F-5E/F/N and 24 F-16N
 

Jeff Head

General
Staff member
Super Moderator
Yes. The MQ-4C Triton...the US Navy version of the RQ-4 Global Hawk.

The Air Force already has 42 of these aircraft I believe...the US Navy wants 68. Intitally twp Global Hawks were taken and modified for the competition. Since that time three new MQ-4Cs have been built and the US Navy budget for 2017 calls for LRIP of 19 aircraft all to be delivered by 2020. The aircraft is expected to achieve IOC in 2018 and FOC in 2023.

These aircraft, flying at 60,000 ft+ and staying aloft for up to 90 hours, will proved US forces with an essential backup communication network to supplement the satellite network currently so essential to US Forces use of precision weapons.

In addition, the are very high capability patrol aircraft in its own right for recon, surveillance, targeting, and several other tasks.

Along with US forces (Navy and Air Force), India intends to supplement their P-8I purchases with Tritons, Australia intends to supplement the P-8A Poseidon MPA aircraft it is purchasing with these aircraft...and I think the UK is planning something similar. Germany is considering the MQ-4C as the platform to modernize its SIGINT needs with.

These are important wheels and cogs in the machinery that the US Military intends to use to gain supremacy when it comes to sensor and data dominance.
 

FORBIN

Lieutenant General
Registered Member
Interesting
Long-term Budgetary Challenges Facing the Military Services and Innovative Solutions for Maintaining our Military Superiority
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I see also it CRS have say but maybe interesting matters to see, if Mr Jura can have more ;)
NB : not in the PDF
Sub shortfall: extend LAs where possible, build 2 VAs for as long as possible, creative deployments...mitigate, dont erase trough

Predictable funding would allow us to buy 12 subs for the cost 10 or 11
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IIRC last time 9 for price of 10.
 
Interesting
Long-term Budgetary Challenges Facing the Military Services and Innovative Solutions for Maintaining our Military Superiority
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... if Mr Jura can have more ;)
...
Thursday at 8:31 PM
now I read
US Service Chiefs Lament Budget Squeeze
and I'm wondering if it's just the usual pledge to increase the budgets, or not

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budgeting is generally ignored here, kinda paradox LOL
 

Jeff Head

General
Staff member
Super Moderator
2 new names and the list is full right now :)

Flight IIA Restart
PCU John Finn (DDG 113), Under construction (Ingalls Shipbuilding) expected in September 2016
PCU Ralph Johnson (DDG 114), Under construction (Ingalls Shipbuilding) expected in January 2017
PCU Rafael Peralta (DDG 115), Under construction (Bath Iron Works) expected in July 2016 or 2017


Flight IIA Technology Insertion

PCU Thomas Hudner (DDG 116), Under construction (Bath Iron Works) expected in May 2017
PCU Paul Ignatius (DDG 117), Under construction (Ingalls Shipbuilding) expected in January 2018
PCU Daniel Inouye (DDG 118), Under construction (Bath Iron Works) expectedin November 2018
Delbert D. Black (DDG 119), Contract awarded (Ingalls Shipbuilding) expected in July 2019
Carl M. Levin (DDG 120), Contract awarded (Bath Iron Works) expected in January 2020
Frank E. Petersen Jr. (DDG 121)
John Basilone (DDG 122)
Lenah H. Sutcliffe (DDG 123)

Flight III
Harvey C. Barnem Jr. (DDG 124)
Jack H. Lucas (DDG 125)
Louis H. Wilson Jr (DDG 126)
Eight under construction and six more named and in the pipeline.

Those eight all to be launched before the end of 2020...and maybe one or two more perhaps.

Also now three Burke IIIs named. Outstanding!

DDG-126 gets us out to a total of 76 Burkes.
 
and here ya go, the "Boss Man's" answer to O-AX, "ain't gonna happen", this idea continues to float around in the "dreamers heads", its just not going to happen because there is really no such thing as a "permissive" environment. I can't even begin to tell you what a "stupid" idea it is to equip the "Afghan" theatre with such weapons for the "Air Force", what Air Force, and they will be in the hands of the bad guys as soon as we leave?

How do you think ISIL armed up??? abandoned weapons, of an ill prepared, abandoned, Iraqi SDF by the Obama administration. Having 30 Light Attack Tucano's setting on some airstrip is an easy target for insurgents, and a "throw some breadcrums" idea for propping up what???

Sorry to be so negative, but this idea is stupidity, throwing money, and a Kool "wet dream" aircraft at a very bad situation, and hoping that will "fix it", typical BHO team reaction, like Hillary running guns to Syria, and we all know how that worked out for "Ambassador Stevens", and his faithful defenders!
related :) is Exclusive: Air Force Mulls Flight Demo for Possible Light Attack Aircraft Buy
The Air Force is considering a near-term buy of light attack aircraft to help relieve mounting operations costs, ameliorate a fighter pilot shortage and improve readiness, a top general told Defense News in an exclusive interview.

Lt. Gen. James M. "Mike" Holmes, the service’s deputy chief of staff for strategic plans and requirements, is floating a number of options to Air Force leaders, including a potential flight demonstration of inexpensive, off-the-shelf tactical airplanes that could occur as early as spring 2017.

Holmes stressed that a new light attack craft, which has been termed OA-X, would not replace the A-10 Warthog fleet. Instead, it would be a supplement to the Warthog that would give combatant commanders a low-cost option for battling the violent extremist groups in light of the high operations and maintenance costs associated with the A-10 and various fighter jets currently doing that job.

This July, reports surfaced about an emerging Air Force proposal that would have the service take a two-pronged approach to conducting close air support (CAS) missions and ultimately replacing the Warthog. Aerospace experts present at a briefing by service officials described a plan where the Air Force would first buy an inexpensive OA-X to compliment the A-10 in low-threat environments. Later, the service would procure an A-X that would replace the Warthog and provide the ability to conduct CAS against more dangerous adversaries in medium-threat environments.

“It comes down a little bit to what do you believe. Do you believe that this war that we're fighting to counter violent extremists is going to last another 15 years?” Holmes said in a Sept. 15 interview. “If you believe it does, and our chief believes it will, then you have to think about keeping a capability that's affordable to operate against those threats so that you're not paying high costs per flying hour to operate F-35s and F-22s to chase around guys in pickup trucks.”

The service is also considering pushing back its retirement of the A-10 from 2022 to a later year because of similar concerns about the high cost-per-flight hour of fifth generation fighters, he noted.

Air Force leaders have yet to make a final decision on whether to buy an OA-X or A-X, and the Pentagon and Congress also get a vote, said Holmes, who is nominated to lead Air Combat Command. If confirmed, he would be charged with overseeing the service’s fighter and bomber fleets, which include the A-10.

Since the proposal was first made public, however, some top service officials have questioned whether the Air Force would find space in its budget for a two new aircraft.

“Where would we get the money?” asked Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James in July, who had not been briefed on the plan at the time. “Not at all clear to me.”

Current Air Combat Command head Gen. Herbert “Hawk” Carlisle in August raised questions on whether investing in an OA-X or A-X would be the most effective use of funds.

“If you look at the things within the combat Air Force portfolio that I'm responsible for in modernization and taking care of those systems, I don't know where the money would come from,” he said. “And if we got extra money, in my opinion, there's other things that I would do first to increase our combat capability before we go to that platform.”

Holmes acknowledged the difficulty of adding another acquisition to its already overstuffed budget. In recent budget cycles, the Air Force has benefited from agreements that added funding above the Budget Control Act spending caps.

“If we go back to a BCA level, we won't be talking about adding new things, we'll be talking about getting rid of things that we're doing, and anything that we do is going to be a tradeoff,” he said.

However, the service needs relief from growing operations-and-maintenance costs that are consuming a vast portion of its resources, Holmes said.

“The question is, how do you afford it? The counter question is, how can you not afford it? Or, can you afford not to because of the operating cost difference?" he asked. "Right now, the thing that's growing faster than inflation and eating up space in our budget is operating costs.”

As the service readies its fiscal year 2019 budget plans, Holmes wants to collect data that would help James and Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein decide whether to proceed with an OA-X program of record. One option on the table is a flight demonstration of multiple off-the-shelf airplanes, which could happen as early as spring 2017.

“We may do some experiments where we invite people to come in and show us what their airplanes can do,” Holmes said. “If we do an experiment like that, it will be to try to help determine whether there is a portion of the mission that we're doing now that could be done by a less capable, less expensive airplane, and if so, if there are one or more airplanes out there that you could acquire with very little development and send out there to do it?”

“We don't think it would cost a lot of money, and it's designed just to help us get our arms around [questions like], what can you actually do? Does it actually contribute? Can it survive in different threat environments?” he said.

If the service prioritizes close air support as the primary mission for the aircraft, its options are limited to planes such as Textron AirLand’s Scorpion jet, Embraer’s A-29 Super Tucano or Beechcraft’s AT-6, said Richard Aboulafia, an aerospace analyst with the Teal Group.

It could also opt for one of the off-the-shelf offerings for the T-X trainer competition such as the Alenia Aermacchi M-346, a variant of which is being proposed by Raytheon and Leonardo.

“You need a high-wing, relatively capable of good low altitude performance, and relatively low speeds, and the 346 would do it,” Aboulafia said. Boeing’s clean-sheet T-X design might also have applicability, “but both of them would be significantly inferior to the A-10 for that job.”

Another option is light fighter like the FA-50 made by Lockheed Martin and Korea Aerospace Industries, “but that’s not optimized for slow ground attack. It’s like a mini F-16,” he said.

Part of the argument in favor for buying an OA-X is that a low-cost, off-the-shelf aircraft would benefit more than just the close air support mission. It provides the cheapest way for the service to improve its capacity and boost readiness against near-peer competitors, Holmes said.

While the service is capable of satisfying demands in the Middle East and doing occasional “theater support package” deployments meant to help bolster enagement with allies, the high operational tempo makes it difficult for airmen to receive enough training to prevail against near-peer adversaries that would operate integrated air defense systems.

“So if I increase my capacity, I could split that rotation up over a larger group, I could give everybody more time to train against a full spectrum threat, and then I could gradually start to increase my readiness,” he said.

Having additional planes would also allow the service to train more fighter pilots per year, something Holmes said was vital for increasing the number of flight instructors and building up the command-and-control capability at air operations centers — both of which require experienced aviators.
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I've been following A-10 "saga" ... the last one Aug 5, 2016
...
Air Force To Make A-10 Replacement Recommendations as Early As Fall
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now U.S. Air Force Secretary: Service May Delay A-10 Retirement
Although the U.S. Air Force has been fighting for years to sunset the A-10 attack plane so it can move resources to newer fighters, Secretary Deborah Lee James tells Aviation Week the air arm may once again delay plans to retire the Thunderbolt II.

The Air Force’s latest plan is to begin gradually sunsetting the A-10 in fiscal year 2018, with the last aircraft heading to the boneyard in fiscal 2021. But Congress is once again pushing back, arguing that divesting the so-called Warthog leaves the Air Force without a dedicated close-air support (CAS) platform, leaving soldiers on the ground vulnerable to enemy fire.

“The plan has us gradually retiring the A-10 beginning in the final couple of years of the five-year plan, but Congress appears to be saying no to that,” James said. “We would also consider: could we keep the A-10s, by different approaches, longer in our inventory than we project?”

This would not be the first time the Air Force has caved to pressure from Congress and the public to keep the A-10 around longer than planned. For the past several years, the Air Force has attempted to retire the A-10 in order to move precious maintainers and resources to standing up the fifth-generation
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. But each year the Air Force has shifted its budget plans, most recently citing the Warthog’s critical role in the campaign against Islamic State terrorists in Iraq and Syria.

“I want to be absolutely crystal clear that we stand by 150 percent the close-air support mission and there’s a variety of aircraft that contribute to that,” James stressed. “Bottom line is we have got the backs of the ground troops and we are going to continue to be experts on CAS.”

The Air Force will review all the possibilities about what to do with the A-10 and how to fulfill the CAS mission in the future as the service begins planning its fiscal 2018 budget request later this fall, James said.

James also expects to hear more this fall about a new plan being kicked around inside the Air Force to pursue not one but two new aircraft programs to augment and eventually replace the A-10. Although Air Force leaders have serious reservations about the two-phased approach, the controversial plan is not off the table just yet. In fact it is one of several possibilities service leadership is considering to ensure the future of the CAS force, James said.

Although James stressed that no final decisions have been made, senior service leaders have questioned the viability of the two-step plan, which involves pursuing a low-end, light-attack “OA-X” to augment the A-10 in a CAS role in the short term, while simultaneously aiming for a more robust A-10 replacement down the line.

Gen. Herbert Carlisle, Air Combat Command chief, said recently that he is “struggling” with the first part of the plan in particular, which could involve buying an off-the-shelf airframe, such as the turboprop A-29 Super Tucano or the AT-6 trainer, for use in a low-threat battlespace. Carlisle is not convinced the U.S. and its allies will fight in permissive environments for much longer, particularly given the proliferation of advanced surface-to-air missiles that can shoot down slow, unstealthy aircraft, he said in August.

“Given the evolving threat environment, I sometimes wonder what ‘permissive’ in the future is going to look like or if there is going to be any such thing,” Carlisle said. “I’m working my way through whether that’s a viable plan or not given what the threat is continuing to evolve to, to include the terrorist threat and their ability to get their hands on potentially weapons from a variety of sources.”

The Air Force seems more open to the idea of buying a more robust AX-2 to replace the A-10 in the long run. The new platform would be designed to operate in a moderate- to low-threat regime, meaning it could fight in some contested conditions. The Air Force is currently building a draft requirements document for a follow-on CAS platform, Lt. Gen. Mike Holmes, deputy chief of staff for strategic plans and requirements, said in April—the first concrete step toward developing an A-10 replacement.

But it is still unclear where the Air Force would get the money for either OA-X or AX-2. The service is facing a bow wave of modernization programs that threatens to bust the Pentagon’s budget belt at the same time that the Navy kicks off an effort to replace its ballistic-missile submarines. The Air Force’s bow wave includes top priorities such as the F-35, the B-21 bomber and the
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tanker, as well as lower-level priorities that must compete for resources: T-X, modernizing Air Force One, and building a replacement for the Minuteman III land-based intercontinental ballistic missiles.

“I don’t know where the money would come from,” Carlisle said. “If we got extra money, in my opinion there’s other things that I would do first to increase our combat capability before I would go to that platform.”
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