Topics: Adm. Bill Moran, carriers, commentary, CVN-78, drones, F-35C, F-35JointStrikeFighter, fighters, fixed wing, Ford-class aircraft carrier, navy, navy future, op-ed, UAVs
Debate about the composition of the CVW in the 2020/30s is interesting. Current plans suggest it will comprise of 2 squadrons each of F/A-18E/F and F-35Cs, with 6-8 UCLASS UASs, and a det of Growlers and screwtops. Others see a 3 to 1 mix of Super Hornets to Lightnings. At any rate, the Ford class will offer increased deck real estate, and with that, better sortie generation.
a good caption for he first picture would bi do not know how to srart it do you ?
I’d like to hear what we are doing at the raw materials and component level to insure we can build, operate, and maintain all of this magic stuff without relying on China for 97% of rare earth elements, 90%+ of the semiconductor chips, and so many other products and commodities necessary to make it all work.
Having 99% of the assets being high-technology with little or no fallback to low-tech, yet extremely effective (in the aircraft arena; A-6 Intruder, F14 Tomcat, A7 Corsair, SH2, SH3 etc. … all stuff that can be fixed with hand tools, an oscilloscope and a soldering iron, and essentially 100% made in USA ) leaves us terribly vulnerable to supply chain disruption. Or espionage….how difficult would it be fir a Chinese chip fab to engineer in vulnerabilities or “back doors” in a complicated chip? With perhaps 4million or even 10milliion transistors on a chip, messing with the microcode so as not to be detected is easily. Imagine if critical systems could be shut down by simply broadcasting a radar signal. Or having it cause a stealth jet to beacon itself…???
Doubters, if we crashed iranian centrifuges by placing secret code in process controlling PLC’s embedded chips, is what I predict really beyond reason?
So, Navy, what is the plan to insure all this gold-plated stuff can’t be defeated by the Chinese without them firing a shot?
I genuinely believe you folks need to re-think the idea of a hi/low mix.
With air supremacy, you don’t need stealth on everything. Bring back the A6-E Intruder. Update with modern avionics refit like USAF has done with the A10 and B52, and you now GENUINELY have a tactical aircraft that abides by your “Truck” concept.
The bonus being that TWO SQUADRONS of Intruders, updated, operated, and maintained, would cost less than a single F35 airframe and engine.
And the old iron jets are survivable too…we will never see a F35 bring its crew home safely with a manhole-cover sized hole in a wing. I know for a fact the A-6E can do that.
I’d say the same for the Tomcats and Corsairs, except you already turned them into beer cans…
What worries me is that the Navy is building the America Class carriers and the Ford Class carriers with the F-35 as the backbone; however, the F-35 is not completed and fully tested yet. I see carrier classes tailored made for a specific aircraft that is unproven and years away from completion.
However, the LHA-6 (America) class carriers are not handicapped with either a catapult or angled flight deck, making it so much more useful (sarcasm intended). It depends on the F-35B variant being successful (though it can still fly harriers, choppers, and ospreys), but in short – its a CV.
Many defense analysts believe that large deck carriers are only tempting targets, and that we should start building smaller deck carriers (LHD’s, LHA’s) because we can then distribute our assets better, and keep a more versatile force, while reducing risk.
And you are right to be concerned w/r/t the F-35, and its incomplete testing regime. The missions and profiles for that aircraft (i.e. expectations) have been steadily being lowered, which is a definite concern. While the expectations for the aircraft have been lowered, its price has been steadily rising.
The trend appears to be a much larger price for a less capable aircraft. I, of course, in this respect, would love to be proven wrong.
You’re right about the F-35. I believe the problem with the aircraft is that it’s trying to be three different planes, and it’s turned into a disaster. Electronics wise, it’s highly advanced. It’s the performance side that worries me. I believe the Marine Corp version should have been shelved and a new aircraft design specifically tailored to the Marine corp should have been built. The Marine Corp could have partnered with Great Britain to lower the costs. That hump in the plane that’s designed into it to contain the fan for vertical takeoffs and the added weight is just killing the plane I believe. It’s tactical range is dubious. I just don’t see how these large deck carriers are going to be effective when their main attack plane will have a very limited range.
Maybe I’m wrong but I believe that their is a law that states that the navy must have eleven carriers operating! Today we have ten and they are talking about cutting back three more because of the sequester! Amounts that are almost nothing in the sceam of the federal budget, just more lies from those we elect in Washington and as for laws, what are those anyway?
I love America but I also despise my governments, they are not one and the same!
Good government is limited government doing what is needed that the private sector cannot accomplish, but is necessary for the nation. No better example then the military.
How many programs are they forced to purchase by congress at the pentagon?
By the time it’s fielded, the F35 will be obsolete and will represent the most corrupt and most expensive crime outside Obama Care in our history!
Obama Care like Obama and his party are not about lowering costs but making us dependent! Wanted to lower Healthcare costs? You allow companies and individuals the option to purchase insurance outside your state and set up payment systems directly to your health provider! If you cut out a third party or limit their involvement, health providers would never have charged fees that no one could pay! Instead, they are going to lower costs by adding dozens of new layers and endless regulations, how? The same way they will respect the law and keep 11 active carriers I guess!
As for Carriers, soon to be obsolete also! Hypersonic and smart supersonic missiles, laser and kinetic energy weapons, land based hypersonic aircraft, self deployed smart weapons that will hunt ships, all will make the carrier, the new battleships of the fleets!
Did not Sweden in an inexpensive sub just penetrate their multi level protection screen and sink one! As for our guys, don’t they say they can do the same if only they were allowed to!
I’m inclined to think that great goals and projects do uplift nations but to be great they must be needed and provide needed use and results! Some people say we should build things like the tallest buildings again in America! But does Dubai, Saudi Arabia, or some ghost cities in China really need 1000 meter high buildings mandated by governments? If and when they come back to our shores, they will be private enterprises to fill either a need or to enhance an idea or plan. Not some useless exercise in stupidity! At least in the America that was! I’m inclined to think these new super carriers are mandated by our government in the same manner!
Sydney J. Freedberg, Jr.