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[*] posted on 6-6-2018 at 04:00 PM


Super-Efficient Field Trial Deployment

(Source: Australian Department of Defence (DST); issued June 05, 2018)

DST regularly conducts trials at Woomera to test the effectiveness of self-protection countermeasures for Australian Defence Force aircraft; leading to increased survivability of these platforms.

This involves transporting a large amount of complex and highly sensitive equipment, with a great deal of effort needed for preparation, transport, set up and operation at the remote location.

Defence Scientist Aaron Debono thought there had to be a better way and proposed a novel solution. Debono suggested a deployable facility that could be accurately and efficiently pre-configured, easily transported and ready to roll when it arrived at the field site.

The deployable trial facility would incorporate everything needed – tracking mount, all electrical, electronic, information and communications technology, optical and cooling gas elements – into a single deployable container. Once prepared, all the trial elements could be secured by closing up the container without disconnecting any wiring or plumbing and whilst maintaining optical alignment. This closed-up container could be shipped to the trial site and deployed by only making external connections.

Complex requirements

When he set about designing a solution, Debono came up against competing requirements from stakeholders. The physical architecture required to support these had to be flexible, easy to pack-up and easy to secure overnight on-range.

"You start with a few options, and narrow them down as you progress through design reviews," explains Debono.

The solution incorporated Defence accredited security containers with alarm systems that could store all classified items overnight. Servers could remain running but be externally disconnected so that they could be immediately operational the next day.

"The deployable facility has now been sent to Woomera every year since 2013," says Debono.

"The result is an incredibly streamlined setting up at DST, halving setup time, and also very efficient site establishment once we get to where we are going.

"There is also increased confidence in the results and a much-reduced risk of on-trial failure because almost all circuits can be tested beforehand and remain undisturbed."

The potential for 24-hour operation of the classified server system allows for back-ups to take place overnight, saving significant time each day for the technical team, while reducing work and health safety risks relating to fatigue.

Debono led a multi-disciplinary team that worked with local and overseas industry for over 18 months to develop and implement the solution. He drew on previous experience with international partners to incorporate lessons learned and develop a solution that is leading edge.

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[*] posted on 15-6-2018 at 09:53 AM


From today's Australian.


End of the dogfight as fighters, pilots evolve

BYRON BAILEY The Australian 12:00AM June 15, 2018

Next month, the latest edition of air defence exercise Pitch Black will be run in the Northern Territory.

It will be the first time F35s will be involved in this exercise.

I was involved in the August 2016 Pitch Black, which involved over 110 aircraft from six countries and which, besides the normal complement of F15s, F16s, F18s and Super Hornets plus tankers, had airborne early warning and control as the chess masters, controlling all from behind the battle space.

I was one of a group of former fighter pilots, as part of a strike package of 20, plus assorted aircraft, flying a pair of modified Learjets, pretending to be Su24 fighter bombers and using NATO Russian call sign Fencer.

I was shot down every time but the method of my demise was telling as tactics have evolved enormously.

I learnt to fly on a first-generation jet fighter, the Vampire. I then spent two years on the second-generation Avon Sabre fighter, which was all about learning to outturn your opponent in a dogfight and where the infra-red homing missile was of use only in targeting your opponent from behind if he tried running away too late. Its sidewinder missile made the dogfight more concentrated to stay safe from the lower G missile kill zone and achieving a guns kill with the 30mm cannon.

I then spent several tours on the third-generation jet fighter the Mirage. This high energy Boom and Zoom fighter, like the Phantom, was to prove successful against the Bank and Yank Mig 21 turning fighters in the Middle East wars. The advantage of higher speed energy fighters was the ability to engage and disengage at will, especially using manoeuvring in the vertical plane.

The world’s greatest jet fighter ace, Israeli Giora Epstein, who has 17 kills in his Mirage and a Nesher (a Mirage copy), once fought alone against 11 Egyptian Mig 21s after initially killing the leader of the first pair of Mig 21s and then shooting down another four, giving him a total of 11 Mig21 kills in five days.

My squadron had a visit from two Israeli Mirage fighter combat instructors immediately after 1973’s Yom Kippur War and the reams of gun camera film was very revealing.

The introduction of the fourth-generation F16 and F15 fighters gave pilots the ability to do it all. The F15, with its large wing area and lifting body plus a thrust-weight ratio better than 1 is still the yardstick by which all modern fighters, are measured. Dogfights, however, appear to be on the way out.

My experience in Pitch Black was that I never saw who or what killed me as it was always beyond visual range. I knew I was splashed only by the kill frequency notification.

But again, tactics have changed with the emergence of the awesome fifth-generation F22 stealth fighter. This game-changing wonder weapon is designed to supercruise (supersonic) at 63,000 feet without afterburner, to keep its infra-red signature low. At 63,000 feet, the water vapour content of the atmosphere is too low for contrails to appear and using data-linked information from various sources, the F22 can, without its own radar emitting, destroy targets nearly 300km away without their being aware of its existence.

But the F22 is unavailable and unaffordable, so the F35, as an F22 lite, is the next best option.

It is stealthy, although not as much as the F22. It has come under criticism for having too small a wing area for its heavy weight, which means it is easily out turned by F16s. The Sukhoi 35s, with their 3D thrust vectoring, have even better super manoeuvrability, which I found very entertaining at the Dubai airshow. The F35, however, can top the Sukhoi point and snap shoot ability with its look and shoot helmet capability and all aspect short-range missiles.

The F35 is also criticised for its M1.6 low top speed. With modern missile technology, top speed has ceased to be an important factor.

Stealth and electronic warfare are now the name of the game. That the F35 can possibly be tracked with the latest multi-frequency radars does not mean it can be successfully targeted.

In my last year in the RAAF, I attended a senior officers joint warfare course. We war-gamed a scenario of an aircraft carrier-equipped battle group invading northwest Australia. Our best asset was the F-111. A co-ordinated, supersonic, low-level night strike should have been able to take out the carrier.

Today, this war game scenario is even more relevant, given China has a new aircraft carrier. This is where the F35 can play such an important part. It could neutralise the carrier’s air defence assets and allow our Super Hornets to penetrate to strike and destroy the carrier.

The F35 and the Super Hornets complement each other.

The F35 is called the Joint Strike Fighter but it is too valuable to be exposed to the ground fire of a battlefield, so our defence planners have to carefully consider how they will use our most expensive defence acquisition. The F35 can be fitted with electronic, sensor and missile upgrades as they become available.

The game has changed and it is the F22 and the F35 that are the game-changers.

Fighter pilots have evolved as well. Sitting in the squadron crew room on the RAAF Base Tindal, it was apparent that gone was the brash aggressiveness that marked the previous generation. Today’s warriors are more cerebral and tech savvy.

We can sleep tight because our RAAF is ramping up to be a very capable fighting force.

Byron Bailey is a former RAAF fighter pilot who flew Boeing 777s as an airline captain.




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[*] posted on 15-6-2018 at 11:59 PM


I think Byron should stick to flying 777’s, F-35 is clearly beyond him.

F-22 isn’t more stealthy, nor is the F-35 regularly able to be out-turned by F-16’s and as to ‘super maneuverability’ it’s best work will be at airshows.




In a low speed post-merge manoeuvring fight, with a high off-boresight 4th generation missile and Helmet Mounted Display, the Super Hornet will be a very difficult opponent for any current Russian fighter, even the Su-27/30
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[*] posted on 22-6-2018 at 11:24 PM


JSF Division Engineers in Top Gear

(Source: Australian Department of Defence; issued June 22, 2018)

Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) Division engineers are working hard in the lead-up to an Airworthiness Board in August to ensure the Australian F-35A JSF is successfully certified before the arrival of our first two aircraft in December.

The Defence Aviation Safety Authority (DASA) recently introduced revised terminology and concepts to the ADF aviation environment via Defence Aviation Safety Regulations (DASR). As a result, JSF Division engineers have been working closely with DASA, Air Combat Transition Office (ACTO) and Air Combat Group personnel to align F-35A Airworthiness Board processes and governance activities with the new DASR requirements.

Project Director Mission Systems Stephen McDonald, of JSF Division, said this combined team effort included specific due diligence activities associated with the certification of the F-35A, including assessments against the F-35A configuration, role and environmental aspects.

“It also includes the implementation of controls to reduce identified hazards so far as reasonably practicable in accordance with DASA and WHS requirements,” Mr McDonald said.

“While the combined team takes credit for the achievements to date, the JSF Division Mission Systems engineers, along with ACTO and the F-35A aircrew at the International Pilot Training Centre in Arizona, US, should be recognised for their significant contributions leading to the application of the Australian F-35A Military Type Certificate (MTC) and Military Air Operator Certificate (MAOC).”

Mission Systems engineers in the JSF Division are also coordinating the development of the F-35A Accomplishment Summary, which is a comprehensive document summarising the entire F-35A aviation systems and supporting constructs underpinning ongoing F-35A air operations in Australia.

“The Accomplishment Summary was submitted to the DASA on June 20, six weeks before the F-35A Airworthiness Board, scheduled for August 1,” Mr McDonald said.

“This Airworthiness Board is an important milestone for the F-35A Project. It will review any aspect of Defence aviation as it applies to the F-35A construct, as well as impose limitations or conditions that may be incorporated in the MTC or MAOC being applied for via the Accomplishment Summary.”

What are Defence Aviation Safety Regulations?

Defence Aviation Safety Regulations are regulations or rules with which any organisations that operate military aircraft in the ADF must comply. Compliance is via robust processes, authorisations and other activities that are checked periodically.

What is a Military Type Certificate?

A Military Type Certificate is issued by an airworthiness regulator (such as the Defence Aviation Safety Authority for the ADF, or the Civil Aviation Safety Authority for civil aviation) that signifies the aircraft design (called ‘Type Design’) has been proven to be designed against internationally recognised standards. The authorities will also check regularly that organisations operating aircraft do so in a manner consistent with how the aircraft was designed.

What is a Military Air Operator Certificate?

The Military Air Operator – Air Combat Group in the case of the F-35A – applies to the Defence Aviation Safety Authority (DASA) for a Military Air Operator Certificate (MAOC) to operate the F-35A in Australia. The DASA will review Air Combat Group’s application for the MAOC via the Accomplishment Summary and supporting artefacts at the Airworthiness Board on August 1. If the DASA is satisfied with the system of systems to ensure safe F-35A air operations, the MAOC will be issued.

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[*] posted on 26-6-2018 at 10:49 AM


The Australian12:00AM June 26, 2018

GEOFF CHAMBERS
Canberra Bureau Chief
@Chambersgc

Australia will spend $1.4 billion on six remotely piloted aircraft through a “co-operative program” with the US Navy, to ­bolster border security and target people-smugglers and illegal ­fishing.

The government will today announce funding for the aircraft, which will be used alongside P-8A Poseidon aircraft.

In a statement with Defence Minister Marise Payne and Defence Industry Minister Christopher Pyne, Malcolm Turnbull said the MQ-4C Triton aircraft would help “protect our borders and make our region more ­secure”. “The Triton will complement the surveillance role of the P-8A Poseidon aircraft through sustained operations at long ranges as well as being able to undertake a range of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance tasks,” the statement says. “These aircraft will significantly enhance our anti-submarine warfare and maritime strike capability.”

The Prime Minister said as part of the defence investment, Australia would enter into a “$200 million co-operative program with the US Navy for the development, production and sustainment” of the Tritons.

The $1.4bn investment will include $364m for new facilities at RAAF Base Edinburgh and RAAF Base Tindal, in addition to ground control systems and training. The Triton project will create about 70 jobs.

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[*] posted on 26-6-2018 at 07:34 PM


Canberra to buy six MQ-4C Tritons

26 June, 2018 SOURCE: FlightGlobal.com BY: Greg Waldron Singapore

Australia has confirmed its long-planned acquisition of six Northrop Grumman MQ-4C Triton remotely piloted aircraft.

The initial A$1.4 billion ($1 billion) deal includes one MQ-4C, as well as a A$200 million programme with the US Navy for development, production, and sustainment of the aircraft, says prime minister Malcolm Turnbull.

“The Triton will complement the surveillance role of the Boeing P-8A Poseidon aircraft through sustained operations at long ranges as well as being able to undertake a range of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance tasks,” says Turnbull.

“Together these aircraft will significantly enhance our anti-submarine warfare and maritime strike capability, as well as our search and rescue capability. Our number one priority is keeping Australians safe. This investment will protect our borders and make our region more secure.”

Also included in the $1.4 billion cost is a A$364 million investment in new facilities at RAAF Edinburgh and RAAF Tindal, ground control systems, support, and training.

The Royal Australian Air Force has seven Poseidons in its fleet now, and will have its full complement of 12 by 2022.

While the deal for six examples represents a significant success for Northrop Grumman, Canberra had previously hinted that it could obtain “up to seven” Tritons.

The first example will enter Australian service in mid-2023, with all six to be delivered and in operation by late 2025, based at RAAF Edinburgh in South Australia.

Story corrected to reflect that A$1.4 billion cost includes just one aircraft.

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[*] posted on 26-6-2018 at 11:50 PM


The ABC have an article placing the total cost at $7 billion.



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[*] posted on 27-6-2018 at 09:52 AM


Territory Businesses to Help Deliver New Triton Aircraft Facilities

(Source: Australian Department of Defence; issued June 26, 2018)

The Turnbull Government will invest around $110 million at RAAF Base Tindal to support Australia’s cutting edge new MQ-4C Triton remotely piloted aircraft, with Northern Territory businesses in the box seat to help deliver the infrastructure project.

The Triton aircraft will significantly increase Australia’s ability to secure our borders and enhance our anti-submarine warfare and maritime strike capability.

The unmanned aircraft can support missions of over 24 hours while covering an area of over one million square nautical miles; an area larger than Western Australia.

The Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon Marise Payne and Senator for the Northern Territory, Senator the Hon Nigel Scullion said the Triton will require new hangars, administration and support facilities to be built at Tindal.

“These facilities works will be tendered in a way that will ensure that Northern Territory businesses are best placed to succeed in delivering these facilities,” Minister Payne said.

“The successful prime contractor will be required to implement a Local Industry Capability Plan (LICP) that will ensure small-to-medium businesses in the Northern Territory have the best opportunity to compete and win work.”

“The LICP is a successful Turnbull Government initiative that ensures local businesses can take advantage of the opportunities arising from our Defence infrastructure projects,” Minister Payne said.

Senator Scullion said the Turnbull Government was committed to supporting businesses and workers in the Top End.

“This is the Turnbull Government’s jobs and growth agenda at work. We are investing $8 billion in Defence facilities over the next decade and we are ensuring that local trades and suppliers have every opportunity to participate in this work,” Senator Scullion said.

“This is another demonstration of our commitment to Australia’s long-term national security, and our commitment to supporting Northern Territory business.”

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[*] posted on 10-7-2018 at 04:14 PM


Primer Concern for Corroding Strike Fighters (excerpt)

(Source: The Australian; published July 9, 2018

By Rory Callinan

Ten of the Royal Australian Air Force’s new multi-million-dollar strike fighters have corrosion ­issues after the manufacturer ­failed to use a protective primer when painting the F-35s.

And F-35 pilots could face such debilitating ear pain or sinus ­injury from internal pressure changes that they could crash during complex manoeuvres, a US Government Accountability Office report has warned.

The corrosion and the internal pressure scenario are the latest ­issues plaguing the aircraft that cost about $100 million each and are expected to start arriving in Australia later this year.

The Australian ­Defence Force confirmed on Friday that 10 of its Lockheed Martin-built fighters had been affected by the primer issue that the US government says has to be fixed via a month- long repair process. The issue was first noticed on a US plane by authorities late last year when corrosion was discovered on fasteners under an F-35A’s fuselage panels during maintenance.

A joint government and industry investigation found primer had not been applied to prevent corrosion to the fastener holes in an aluminium cover plate.

Three months ago the US ­Defence Department temporarily suspended acceptance of the strike fighters because of the corrosion issues but did not reveal any affect on the Australia fleet.

At the time the US Air Force’s spokesman for the assistant secretary of acquisition Lieutenant General Arnold Bunch said the corrosion was in fastener holes that were drilled and not “corrected or properly treated”. (end of excerpt)

Click here for the full story, on The Australian website.

https://www.theaustralian.com.au/national-affairs/defence/pr...

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[*] posted on 21-7-2018 at 03:50 PM


Deliveries Pave Way for Fighters

(Source: Australian Department of Defence; issued July 20, 2018)

Support equipment critical to successful F-35A Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) operations in Australia has started appearing at RAAF Base Williamtown as the countdown to the arrival of our first two aircraft gains pace.

The first of eight scheduled sea freight drops of fully deployable JSF support equipment was delivered on May 14 and, by July 2, about 390 articles had arrived.

The Service Support Equipment Lead in the JSF Division, Flight Lieutenant Jonathan Anderson, said the deliveries were part of No. 3 Squadron’s air vehicle support equipment list.

“The deliveries included air-conditioning, hydraulic and power carts, engine trailers, adapters, alignment tools and test equipment. Later deliveries will include toolkits and propulsion support equipment,” Flight Lieutenant Anderson said.

Transporting the equipment to Australia is a truly international effort involving members across the US F-35 enterprise, including the F-35 Joint Program Office, US Navy and prime contractors Lockheed Martin and Pratt & Whitney.

To enable the equipment to be shipped to Australia, they are being supported by other US contractors and international freight forwarders, along with members of the JSF Division, Air Combat Transition Office, Supply Chain Branch and the Australian Embassy in Washington D.C.

“This support equipment will ensure Air Force is able to maintain an ongoing F-35A capability in Australia through organic operational repair,” Flight Lieutenant Anderson said.

Australia’s first two F-35A aircraft are scheduled to arrive at their permanent base at Williamtown in December.

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[*] posted on 24-7-2018 at 09:32 AM


Poseidon's First Strike

(Source: Australian Department of Defense; issued July 22, 2018)


A Boeing ATM-84J Harpoon anti-ship missile is released from a Royal Australian Air Force P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft at the Pacific Missile Range Facility, off the coast of Hawaii during the RIMPAC 2018 exercise. (RAAF photo)

The Royal Australian Air Force’s (RAAF) P-8A Poseidon aircraft has successfully fired its first Harpoon missile during Exercise RIMPAC 18.

The ATM-84J Harpoon missile was launched from the aircraft at the Pacific Missile Range Facility, off the coast of Hawaii.

Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon Marise Payne said the Harpoon is integral to the P-8A reaching full operational capability.

“The successful launch of the Harpoon requires a significant effort from a range of specialist personnel,” Minister Payne said.

The Harpoon was released within the Pacific Missile Range Facility and successfully struck its target, the former USS Racine, a decommissioned US Naval ship.

“The men and women of the RAAF’s 92 Wing should be proud to have achieved this key step in the realisation of this important capability for Australia,” Minister Payne said.

“Our partnership with the United States Navy has allowed us access to the Range Facility, a long standing agreement which has seen the successful testing of many Australian Defence Force weapons systems across both Air Force and Navy.”

Exercise RIMPAC 18 is the world’s largest multinational maritime exercise, with 25 nations participating.

The Australian Defence Force is participating with Royal Australian Navy HMA Ships Adelaide, Success, Melbourne, Toowoomba and Rankin; Australian Army’s 2nd Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment; and the Royal Australian Air Force’s P-8A Poseidon.

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[*] posted on 24-7-2018 at 11:20 AM


Curious that a single missile launch test apparently requires a Ministerial level release detailing the event...

You’d think the Minister’s time could be better spent, progressing the DWP or similar...




In a low speed post-merge manoeuvring fight, with a high off-boresight 4th generation missile and Helmet Mounted Display, the Super Hornet will be a very difficult opponent for any current Russian fighter, even the Su-27/30
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[*] posted on 24-7-2018 at 11:53 AM


The Minister's media people are constantly looking for potential 'announceable's', happy to co-opt service-level announcements in the name of making the Government /Minister / local member look good.



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[*] posted on 24-7-2018 at 12:01 PM


Quote: Originally posted by unicorn  
The Minister's media people are constantly looking for potential 'annouceable's', happy to co-opt service-level announcements in the name of making the Government /Minister / local member look good.


Yep no doubt. There seems to be an inordinate amount of these ‘nothing’ releases though and few and very far between announcements on actual DWP plans however...




In a low speed post-merge manoeuvring fight, with a high off-boresight 4th generation missile and Helmet Mounted Display, the Super Hornet will be a very difficult opponent for any current Russian fighter, even the Su-27/30
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[*] posted on 28-7-2018 at 10:42 AM


Pitch Black: Australia hosts multinational air power exercise with a number of aircraft debuts

By: Mike Yeo   9 hours ago


A United States Air Force F-16C takes off from Royal Australian Air Force Base Darwin as part of Pitch Black 2016. (LSIS Jayson Tufrey/Australian Defence Force)

MELBOURNE, Australia — Military aircraft from several Indo-Pacific air forces are joining aircraft from the United States, France, Canada and host Australia for a multinational air combat exercise that started Friday over northern Australia.

Code-named Pitch Black 2018, the three-week exercise will see the participation of combat aircraft from India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand in what will be the largest Pitch Black to date in terms of the number of aircraft involved and the number of countries sending aircraft, with 140 aircraft and 4,000 personnel from around the world taking part.

The U.S. Air Force is operating Lockheed Martin F-16s from a South Korean-based squadron while the U.S. Marine Corps is represented by Japan-based Boeing F/A-18D Hornets, Lockheed Martin KC-130J Hercules tankers, Bell-Boeing MV-22 Osprey tiltrotor aircraft and helicopters from the six-month Marine rotation currently stationed at Darwin in northern Australia.

Pitch Black 2018 will also see a number of firsts, with the Indian Air Force’s aircraft making its debut at the exercise with its Russian-built Sukhoi Su-30MKI Flanker fighter jets and a C-130J airlifter. It will also see the Boeing E/A-18G Growler electronic attack aircraft taking part for the first time, with three Australian Growlers participating.

The biennial Pitch Black exercise started as a bilateral air combat exercise in the mid-1980s between Australia and the United States, and was named for the dark nights found over Australia’s sparsely populated north.

It has since evolved into a full-spectrum, complex air warfare exercise that includes large force employment of coalition air power, air-land integration activities and remote airfield operations. The Royal Australian Air Force regards Pitch Black as its “capstone international engagement activity” with the air forces from a range of regional and coalition nations.

Speaking at a media event at the exercise’s opening ceremony in Darwin, Australia’s air commander, Air Vice-Marshal Steve Roberton, said the exercise aimed to strengthen regional partnerships, improve interoperability between nations and promote regional stability.

The exercise takes place in the sizable military training areas of northern Australia, utilizing one of the largest unrestricted blocks of training airspace in the world that includes the Bradshaw Field Training Area and Delamere Air Weapons Range.

This allows for a realistic battlefield environment to be replicated during the exercise that previous participants have said was difficult to find in training areas elsewhere in the world.
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[*] posted on 28-7-2018 at 11:36 AM


Obvious every single aircraft in this exercise will be helpless in the face of those IAF SU-30’s...


#floppsybunnyforever




In a low speed post-merge manoeuvring fight, with a high off-boresight 4th generation missile and Helmet Mounted Display, the Super Hornet will be a very difficult opponent for any current Russian fighter, even the Su-27/30
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[*] posted on 28-7-2018 at 12:42 PM


Quote from up this page:

Quote:
End of the dogfight as fighters, pilots evolve

BYRON BAILEY The Australian 12:00AM June 15, 2018

Next month, the latest edition of air defence exercise Pitch Black will be run in the Northern Territory.

It will be the first time F35s will be involved in this exercise.



Looks like the MKIs were too much.
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[*] posted on 31-7-2018 at 09:43 AM


Air Force Takes Virtual Exercise to New Heights

(Source: Royal Australian Air Force; issued July 27, 2018)

Exercise Virtual Pitch Black 2018 (VPB18) has taken virtual training to a new level for the Royal Australian Air Force even before the "live" exercise launched on 27 Jul 18.

VPB18 was conceived as a work-up to Exercise Pitch Black 2018 as a highly-complex, multi-national large force exercise that provided integration and training opportunities for the Air Force to work with key coalition and regional partners.

The main training audiences for VPB18 came from 41 Wing who provided ground-based Command and Control (C2) of air assets, Number 2 Squadron who provided airborne C2 with their E-7A Virtual Wedgetail and Number 37 Squadron operating in the low-level tactical environment using their C-130J full-motion cockpit simulator.

Wing Commander Mick Tully, VPB18 Exercise Director, said the exercise was about taking the highly complex Pitch Black live environment into the virtual space.

"This is to provide training opportunities and exposure to environments ahead of time for the aircrew and operators to experience on Exercise Pitch Black 18," Wing Commander Tully said.

“A highly experienced team was contracted through MilSkil in order to develop a set of scenarios that would adequately prepare the training audience for the “live” Pitch Black exercise.

“This MilSkil team filled key white-force roles to ensure maximum realism for briefing, planning and execution - the exercise was able to fully meet intent.”

VPB18 was enabled by the Air Warfare Centre’s – Distributed Training Centre (AWC-DTC) at RAAF Base Williamtown, a system developed by the Defence Science and Technology Group.

Simulator sites across Air Force are networked using the Defence Training and Experimentation Network (DTEN), with the AWC-DTC enabling exercise control as well as blue and red force injects.

Beyond the ability to connect remote simulators for mission execution, VPB18 provided the opportunity for Air Battle Managers, ground and air, to actively plan with fighter aircraft (MilSkil) and C-130J Hercules aircrew as it will be done in the live Pitch Black exercise.

“VPB18 was a perfect introduction for junior C-130 crews. Scenarios facilitated the airlift role nicely and allowed crews the opportunity to practice establishing contracts with the Offensive Counter Air, Strike and Command and Control packages” said VPB18 C-130J Hercules Lead Planner, Flight Lieutenant Chris Bennie.

The AWC-DTC will continue to expand the networked virtual capabilities for Air Force, with these types of exercises becoming more and more common. The future intent of the AWC-DTC is to provide a standing capability within Air Force to conduct distributed training in the virtual environment on demand, rather than as discreet activities.

“We are merging simulators that have existed separately, but not together as one. We are creating a training system that is integrated and enables a level of complexity, density, scale and fidelity that can work for all,” Wing Commander Tully said.

“Live, Virtual and Constructive (LVC) activities allow Air Force to integrate and exercise our advanced capabilities and tactics in a safe and secure environment without the necessity and cost of getting them airborne.

“Exercises like Virtual Pitch Black demonstrate the value of virtual training while enabling the continual development and expansion of Air Force’s distributed training capabilities.”

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[*] posted on 30-8-2018 at 12:07 PM


A NIFTI Solution for RAAF

(Source: Australian Department of Defence; issued Aug 29, 2018)

A novel flight instrumentation kit that will revolutionise testing and evaluation was today officially handed over to the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF).

The handover occurred during SCINDICATE 2018 Defence Science and Technology’s (DST) laboratories open day for industry in Melbourne. Minister for Defence, the Hon Christopher Pyne MP, said the DST conceived Non-Intrusive Flight Test Instrumentation (NIFTI) would bring great benefit to RAAF.

“Conventional flight tests can be costly and involve extended periods of downtime for aircraft to be modified and fitted with various test instruments,” Minister Pyne said.

“This state-of-the-art wireless system has the ability to carry out in-flight tests without the need for time-consuming aircraft modifications.”

NIFTI comprises a single recorder with multiple sensors that can be attached to most internal and external aircraft surfaces to check operational conditions.

“In trials NIFTI has reduced flight test instrumentation down-time from months to days with significant cost savings to be achieved,” Minister Pyne said.

“This is another impressive example of an innovative technology transitioning to Defence capability.

NIFTI was conceived by DST in collaboration with RAAF and developed by Australian SME Defence Innovations for operational use.

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[*] posted on 30-8-2018 at 11:04 PM


Construction of New Joint Strike Fighter Maintenance Facility in Queensland

(Source: Australian Department of Defence; issued Aug 30, 2018)

TAE Aerospace will develop a Turbine Engine Maintenance Facility (TEMF) in Bundamba, south-east Queensland, which will support in-country sustainment of Australia’s fifth-generation F-35A Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) aircraft.

The TEMF will enable deeper-level maintenance, where JSF F135 engine modules are disassembled, repaired and reassembled for testing.

The Minister for Defence, the Hon Christopher Pyne MP, said the new facility was a testament to the strength of Australia’s defence industry and the contribution it made to the global F-35 Program.

“TAE Aerospace’s new facility will support maintenance, repair, overhaul and upgrade (MRO&U) activities for not only Australian F135 engines but also engines from around the Asia-Pacific region and the world,” Minister Pyne said.

“TAE Aerospace is 100 per cent Australian-owned with 237 employees at several sites across Australia, with contracts to support Classic Hornet, Super Hornet, Growler and M1 Abram tank engines.

“The addition of the F135 engine MRO&U activities will add a minimum of 15 aerospace technician jobs to its workforce and up to 85 additional jobs as part of the future F-35 Global Support Solution.”

The Australian Government has approved the acquisition of 72 F-35A JSF aircraft to replace the current fleet of 71 ageing F/A-18A/B Classic Hornets.

“The global F-35 Program has had a positive impact on Australia’s growing defence industry, which has collectively been awarded in excess of $1 billion in production contracts and will support up to 5000 Australian jobs by 2023,” Minister Pyne said.

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[*] posted on 3-9-2018 at 10:48 AM


From today's Australian, god save us from 'business' writers who think they understand defence.

Lockheed pitching JSF-hybrid F-22 as pilots vote with their feet

ROBERT GOTTLIEBSEN
BUSINESS COLUMNIST
@BGottliebsen

52 MINUTES AGO SEPTEMBER 3, 2018

It was US pilots who finally forced into the open one of the greatest cover ups in the modern world: the disaster that is the Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) or F-35.

The JSF/F-35 was proposed as a low cost, flexible fighter to maintain US air superiority. The cover-up has lasted two decades. First was its cost blow out. In our parliamentary cost estimates, the engines were often left out. Then there were the delays, then its technical problems. And then finally the fact that the JSF was an inferior aircraft that did not deliver air superiority was also concealed.

America’s pilots could see that the JSF was no match for equivalent Russian and Chinese aircraft. Add to that bad management in the US air force and the US pilots have been leaving the USAF force in droves. Who wants to fly a death machine into battle?

READ NEXT

Like the US, the Canadians and Japanese, have also woken up to the fact that the JSF’s claims of air superiority are simply wrong.

At the weekend one if the world’s best connected defence writers, Marcus Weisgerber, global business editor for Defense One, blew the whistle and revealed that the developer of the JSF, Lockheed Martin, is now pitching to the US Air Force a program that takes F-22 Raptor production facilities out of mothballs and equips the F-22 with the JSF’s modern mission avionics, making structural adjustments as required.

The new hybrid Raptor “would aim to answer the next decades Russian and Chinese threats”, Weisgerber says.

An American F22 Raptor fighter plane in action during the 2013 Australia Air Show at Avalon.
An American F22 Raptor fighter plane in action during the 2013 Australia Air Show at Avalon.
The Australian Parliament has been told over and over again that the JSF is the answer to Russian and Chinese threats.

Defence minister after defence minster on both sides has misled the Parliament and the Australian population because they in turn have been misled by defence bureaucrats and didn’t take the time to check the facts.

We now are in a diabolical situation, because we propose to outlay an initial $A28billion for an aircraft that can’t match the Russian and Chinese aircraft. Indonesia is buying the Russian aircraft. As things now stand Australia must rely on the ageing American F-22 for air protection.

How did it get to this?

The massive global cover-up of the JSF disaster goes back to 2001-02.

With the assistance of the Airpower Australia group, headed by Peter Goon and Carlo Kopp, I have been revealing to readers the true situation starting the in The Australian around 2002 when I revealed the false statements that were being made by Australian defence chiefs about the JSF delays and cost overruns.

Then I helped start businessspectator.com.au and again with the help Peter Goon and Carlo Kopp I shared with readers that despite the huge escalation in purchase costs the aircraft would be hideously costly to run and would be no match for the equivalent Russian or Chinese aircraft.

When News bought businessspectator, in The Australian, I continued pursue the truth and even made a submission to the Senate inquiry into the JSF. My submission included the suggestion that the JSF be incorporated into the F22. But I was swamped by the bureaucrats as the false statements kept coming.

I suggested Malcolm Turnbull make Tony Abbott defence minister because Abbott would have uncovered the truth. Turnbull didn’t and the cover-ups continued.

On July 28, 2017 — more than a year ago — I asked “How we can solve the F-35 JSF disaster?”, suggesting that we need to work with the US to incorporate the JSF into the F-22.

Let me emphasise that I am not an aircraft expert.

I just listened to the people who understood the situation and as the years went by I found that in JSF matters that Goon and Kopp were almost always right and the defence chiefs were almost always proved wrong by later events.

So I was able to pass the truth onto readers. And I must thank the readers of The Australian who stayed with me when sometimes what I was writing seemed unbelievable. I also thank the Editor in Chiefs who backed me.

So now let’s document this diabolical mess we in as a result of the truth cover up. Explaining this situation gives me no pleasure whatsoever.

Russia’s Sukhoi Su-35S and Su-57, and China’s Chengdu J-20, are already in the air and fully operational.

All can fly 6km 20,000 feet higher than our F35A version of the JSF. The Russian and Chinese aircraft can also fly 1000kmh an hour faster than the JSF, without using an afterburner. The JSF afterburner requires huge amounts of fuel.

Parliament has been told that we will buy 72 of the JSF aircraft for around $20 billion. Airpower Australia says the costs will be around $28 billion. Airpower Australia has always been a better estimator than defence chiefs, so $28 billion will be closer to the mark.

But we are buying an aircraft the Americans now admit is no match for its rivals.

The F-22 is still a magnificent aircraft, but Lockheed managed to stop production so that all efforts could be concentrated on its highly profitable JSF, which would supposedly deliver air superiority.

Now Lockheed is proposing that the two-engined and much larger F-22 be brought back into production and enhanced by some of the better internal developments in the JSF.

One of those developments, for example, is likely to be the new 360-degree camera system. We are buying our JSFs with the old camera system, which does not work properly and so is being redesigned. So get ready for a big new bill to update our JSFs. Even as it is, maintaining the JSF will cost many times the initial $28 billion purchase price.

The spin of the new development will describe the combined aircraft as a “hybrid”. That’s just another cover up.

The JSF is simply being superseded and replaced with an upgraded F-22 aided by the JSF mission avionics which are recognised as world class.

We are stuck with the superseded JSFs. As I understand it, we are only firmly committed to buying 16 JSF aircraft so we may be able to get out of buying the rest but that involves telling the nation the truth about the cover up.

The last time I visited the Australian war museum there was on display a photo of Australian pilots in Singapore in 1942 rushing to fly Brewster Buffalos against the invading Japanese. The tubby Buffalo was no match for the agile Japanese aircraft and most of the pilots in that photo knew they were racing to their death.

Every Australian politician should visit the museum, look at that photo and hang their heads in shame, because we are doing it again. Thank goodness for the US pilots who brought the cover up to a head.

What’s worse, I fear the Australia’s JSF incompetence has been duplicated in our efforts to buy new submarines and frigates.




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It is by the juice of sapho that thoughts acquire speed,
the lips acquire stains,
the stains become a warning.
It is by will alone I set my mind in motion
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[*] posted on 3-9-2018 at 01:51 PM


Now come on Robert, enough of that, visiting hours are over… time to tuck you in and say night night. :blush:
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[*] posted on 3-9-2018 at 04:02 PM


Must either be a slow news day or web traffic is dropping. The Australian seem to come up with these blatant bullshit pieces to stir things up in their comments section.



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[*] posted on 3-9-2018 at 06:57 PM


Drivel written by an imbecile.............
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[*] posted on 3-9-2018 at 07:39 PM


Quote: Originally posted by bug2  
Drivel written by an imbecile.............


I don't know which was the worst - the article or the comments.:grind:

Cheers
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