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Posted: 4/5/2006 3:31:40 PM EDT
Should be fairly well known by now that one of the current US aircraft the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter was initially intended to replace is the A-10 Warthog. Is there any realistic means by which the F-35 can successfully perform the same types of missions with the sort of success rate that the A-10 is capable of achieving?

On a related note the A-10C has been in development to extend the Warthog's lifetime to 2028 (at the least), while presumably the F-35 would be in full scale production about 10-15 years before then.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 3:32:51 PM EDT
short of the addition of a chuck norris pod, no
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 3:34:13 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/5/2006 3:40:01 PM EDT by DvlDog]
never. but i think the idea is to change the concept of FAS which isnt a good idea anyway. the A10 has time on target loitering ability and a stores capacity no fast mover can match. the AF has been trying to ditch the warthog almost since they got it. back in the 90s my dad was one of a few Army test pilots who were checked out on the A10 with the idea that the AF would give them to the Army. well the AF screwed themselves because back in the 50s they cried to congress about their relavance in tactical planning and the Army is severly limited in its fixed wing capability. its actually capped and limited to theatre airlift and executive transport duties.

anyone remember when the AF wanted to hang a LANTIRN pod and a 20mm gunpod on an F16 and call it an upgrade?

personally i would like to see a comprehensive A-10 SLEP or a clean slate slow-mover design.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 3:35:35 PM EDT
It won't have to, a scaled up version of this will though:



24 hours of loiter, great EO/IR/SAR sensors, and some new deadly munitions will bring a whole new kind of CAS to the battlefield. Think 100 mini AC-130s on orbit continuously just waiting for GPS coordinates.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 3:36:05 PM EDT
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 3:36:25 PM EDT
No Way!

They keep tryin' to scrap the A-10's but keep realizing we need them. All they need to do is keep updating them(Electronics, Avionics). the thing is built like a brick sh*t house.

The A-10, Keep it Flyin'
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 3:36:37 PM EDT
sure if nobody is shooting back.
the titanium tub is there for a reason.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 3:40:15 PM EDT

Originally Posted By NonConformist:
No Way!

They keep tryin' to scrap the A-10's but keep realizing we need them. All they need to do is keep updating them(Electronics, Avionics). the thing is built like a brick sh*t house.

The A-10, Keep it Flyin'



They have already gotten new center wing boxes (because they were cracking, "brick shithouse" notwithstanding ) and are getting new engines (well upgraded ones) and all new avionics. All that stuff is necessary to keep it viable until UCAVs replace it entirely. I love the hawg, but nothing lasts forever.



Link Posted: 4/5/2006 3:41:55 PM EDT
No!

That is all
~Dg84
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 3:52:30 PM EDT
The premise is based on the F-35 not replacing the A-10 with the same execution of the missons, but the same missions with different execution.

Rather than fly an F-35 the same way you fly an A-10, you fly the F-35 like an F-35, but still provide the support. The idea being that technology has surpassed the requirement for tank-busting strafing and close in dumb bomb drops and other than that the A-10 really dosen't do anything different that an F-35 couldn't do. The F-35 with precision munitions should be able to provide the same close air support by using guided bombs and missles at stand-off distances and not require the F-35 to fly in the same threat envelope that the A-10 has to operate in.

So the idea is to use the aircraft differently, leveraging it's technology, to accomplish the same mission.

That's the idea anyway. The extension of the A-10 well into the production run of the F-35 could indicate a different reality. It's possible that the Air Force is hedging it's bets and giving itself a good time buffer to see if it really works out that way. If the F-35 is incapable of doing the mission, the USAF will know well before the A-10 really goes away, and then it can go to Congress and act like the F-35 was never intended to replace the A-10 and ask for money for an A-10 replacement. Congress will gladly ingore the fact that the F-35 was supposed to do that, and gleefully spend your tax dollars on yet another program because that's what they do best.

In the end I don't think it will matter much if the F-35 can replace the A-10 or not. If it can, great. If it can't, they'll get a different replacement.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 4:08:24 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/5/2006 4:10:57 PM EDT by DnPRK]
Let's fight the next war using the last war's old tech

A-10 is a MANPADS magnet just like Apache and Cobra. How much air support are you going to get when they are too busy trying to keep from being shot down? Besides, using A-10s based at a 10,000 foot runway a hundred miles away means a long wait when you need fire support right now!

I'm a fan of unitary GMLRS and Land Warrior. Use the Land Warrior ensemble to calculate target coordinates and datalink them to a nearby HIMARS battery. Your GMLRS will be there in a few seconds, not tens of minutes.

F-35 can be used for CAS, but it isn't optimal for that job. It's not because it doesn't have a GAU-8, but because it isn't persistent (cannot loiter over the battlefield).

A better CAS solution is a Predator C with a sh!tload of Viperstrike bombs. The Predator C can loiter over the battlefield for 24 hours at a time. Datalink target coordinates and few seconds later a Viperstrike destroys it.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 5:58:07 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/5/2006 5:59:00 PM EDT by DvlDog]
its my understanding that GMLRS was pushed through and developed in response to the air forces shit-poor CAS performance. the airforce weathers out way more than the Navy, Army and Corps. all AF weather for the sandbox comes out of Shaw AFB SC using sensor data and observer data relayed back to CONUS. a flawed system if you ask me. if some weather donk in south carolina says its a no go well guess what...theres still guys on the ground getting shot at regardless of whether or not the AF thinks its safe. when i called for CAS my preference was:

Marine air
NavAir
A-10s
Army
the rest of the air force

My brother is a pilot in the Md air guard, herc driver but some of his A-10 buddies there said they often do a low pass over the hagerstown airport out of respect for the old Fairchild plant.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 6:05:32 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/5/2006 6:09:57 PM EDT by Black-Tiger]
The answer is no; You can't replace "The Silent Gun" (as the Iraqis called it back in Desert Storm), The A-10 can take damage that would knock 10 F35s out of the sky and still fly home.

The A-10 is a tanker's worst nightmare, specially if the tanker is the enemy. If I ever have to call for a CAS, my top choice would be an A-10 loaded with AGM-65D Maverick missiles and the 30mm.

Besides, how many modern fighter planes you know that can take this much damage and still fly?








Is a thing of sheer brutal beauty.

Link Posted: 4/5/2006 6:08:15 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Chairborne:

Originally Posted By NonConformist:
No Way!

They keep tryin' to scrap the A-10's but keep realizing we need them. All they need to do is keep updating them(Electronics, Avionics). the thing is built like a brick sh*t house.

The A-10, Keep it Flyin'



They have already gotten new center wing boxes (because they were cracking, "brick shithouse" notwithstanding ) and are getting new engines (well upgraded ones) and all new avionics. All that stuff is necessary to keep it viable until UCAVs replace it entirely. I love the hawg, but nothing lasts forever.



I wound't let a B-52 driver hear you say that.....
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 6:12:50 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Zakk_Wylde_470:
I wound't let a B-52 driver hear you say that.....



BUFF Drivers have nothing to fear; they'll be flying those badass bombers 'till the wings fall off.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 6:20:28 PM EDT
Not no but hell no.

If you go back to Operation Anaconda, when you have a lot of bad guys and friendlies, a confused situation, a lot of aircraft stacked up, and mortars firing, someone is going to have to provide the FAC mission and some precise (Read: guns) capability at close in distances. Like Robert's Ridge where CAS runs were made with guns because the friendlies and enemies were inside 100 m.

Someone is going to have to loiter low and slow and use the mark one eyeball to see what is going on, and no, UAVs dont have the field of view, and just energize TOCs and staff guys to deconflict things by committee.

So no. It can't. And if you want to say that the F-35 can equate to an A-10 as a bomb truck from high up, then I can get anything in the inventory to do that, as is.

It's not a technology and black box issue. USAF can't black box to see where the shells are flying and deconflict. So you have to look, and see.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 6:21:03 PM EDT

Originally Posted By DnPRK:
Let's fight the next war using the last war's old tech

A-10 is a MANPADS magnet just like Apache and Cobra. How much air support are you going to get when they are too busy trying to keep from being shot down? Besides, using A-10s based at a 10,000 foot runway a hundred miles away means a long wait when you need fire support right now!




Hence why they designed the A-10 to take it and get home.
You can fly CAS at 10,000 feet. But there are times when the guys on the ground are going to want something slow, near the ground, that can see what they see.

Anyway, if you're flying CAS using small laser guided bombs called down by troops or other precision weapons, the F-35 becomes totally useless. In that kind of environment it makes more sense to have a loitering B-52 or B-1B. They can cruise up high, loiter longer, carry more bombs, and hit things with bombs from that high.

The F-35 is not a CAS aircraft. Never will be. The Air Force is, once again, trying to do too much with one airframe. I thought we learned this lesson already.

See: F-105. Hey! It's got a gun, and it can carry both bombs and missiles. It's a multirole aircraft because we want it to be! Let's send 'em downtown unescorted.

IMHO, the F-35 can happily replace the F-16. If the USAF drops the A-10 the Army should chuck Key West and fly their own close air support.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 6:22:27 PM EDT
.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 6:29:39 PM EDT

Originally Posted By CitySlicker:
.




No way. Are you insane? I totally disagree with this entire post.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 6:32:43 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Chairborne:
It won't have to, a scaled up version of this will though:

www.af.mil/shared/media/photodb/web/web_030813-F-8888W-006.jpg

24 hours of loiter, great EO/IR/SAR sensors, and some new deadly munitions will bring a whole new kind of CAS to the battlefield. Think 100 mini AC-130s on orbit continuously just waiting for GPS coordinates.


Skynet is watching.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 6:34:43 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Spade:

Originally Posted By CitySlicker:
.




No way. Are you insane? I totally disagree with this entire post.



+1 He has no idea what he's talking about.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 6:36:57 PM EDT
I'm giving a +1 to the "technology has surpassed the need for straffing." I really like the idea of a BIG bomb-truck up in the sky and guys on the ground only need to call in bomb drops -- guided munitions are dropped as fast as the target is identified, and land significantly faster than an old-school CAS bird would ID the target, fly there, and hit it with a dumb drop or strafe run.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 6:37:05 PM EDT
can the F-35 replace the A-10?

short answer: no

long answer: no glass jawed go fast stealth jet could ever replace a flying tank like the A-10 for CAS.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 6:40:53 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Black-Tiger:
The answer is no; You can't replace "The Silent Gun" (as the Iraqis called it back in Desert Storm), The A-10 can take damage that would knock 10 F35s out of the sky and still fly home.

The A-10 is a tanker's worst nightmare, specially if the tanker is the enemy. If I ever have to call for a CAS, my top choice would be an A-10 loaded with AGM-65D Maverick missiles and the 30mm.

Besides, how many modern fighter planes you know that can take this much damage and still fly?

www.globalsecurity.org/military/systems/aircraft/images/a-10_oif_battle-damage_mvc-006f.jpg

www.globalsecurity.org/military/systems/aircraft/images/a-10_oif_battle-damage_mvc-004f.jpg

www.globalsecurity.org/military/systems/aircraft/images/a-10_oif_battle-damage_mvc-003f.jpg

www.globalsecurity.org/military/systems/aircraft/images/A-10-AZ.jpg
Is a thing of sheer brutal beauty.



Yeah they're tough, but when they're ALL shot to shit like the bird in the photo, how will you answer the next call for air support? That damage was done by an old SA-7, not one of the modern Igla-S or Qianwei-2 that are better than our Stinger.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 6:44:07 PM EDT
Let's look at it another way. If you're a grunt on the ground and the SHTF what's going to comfort you more; hearing there's a JSF on the way or hearing there's a Warthog on the way?
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 6:44:38 PM EDT

Originally Posted By DvlDog:

anyone remember when the AF wanted to hang a LANTIRN pod and a 20mm gunpod on an F16 and call it an upgrade?



I remember hearing 30mm pod, with the same ammo as the A-10 gun, and some extra kevlar around the engine and the pilot. That ridiculous plan was the reason I didn't join the AF, since I wanted to fly A-10s and at the time to be making that decision all signs pointed to it going to the scrapyard.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 6:50:05 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Black-Tiger:
The answer is no; You can't replace "The Silent Gun" (as the Iraqis called it back in Desert Storm), The A-10 can take damage that would knock 10 F35s out of the sky and still fly home.

The A-10 is a tanker's worst nightmare, specially if the tanker is the enemy. If I ever have to call for a CAS, my top choice would be an A-10 loaded with AGM-65D Maverick missiles and the 30mm.

Besides, how many modern fighter planes you know that can take this much damage and still fly?

www.globalsecurity.org/military/systems/aircraft/images/a-10_oif_battle-damage_mvc-006f.jpg

www.globalsecurity.org/military/systems/aircraft/images/a-10_oif_battle-damage_mvc-004f.jpg

www.globalsecurity.org/military/systems/aircraft/images/a-10_oif_battle-damage_mvc-003f.jpg

www.globalsecurity.org/military/systems/aircraft/images/A-10-AZ.jpg
Is a thing of sheer brutal beauty.




This one


Link Posted: 4/5/2006 6:56:08 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Alien:

Originally Posted By Spade:

Originally Posted By CitySlicker:
.




No way. Are you insane? I totally disagree with this entire post.



+1 He has no idea what he's talking about.




Your gonna burn in hell for that one, buddy!

Link Posted: 4/5/2006 7:04:26 PM EDT

Originally Posted By TheSneak:

Originally Posted By DvlDog:

anyone remember when the AF wanted to hang a LANTIRN pod and a 20mm gunpod on an F16 and call it an upgrade?



I remember hearing 30mm pod, with the same ammo as the A-10 gun, and some extra kevlar around the engine and the pilot. That ridiculous plan was the reason I didn't join the AF, since I wanted to fly A-10s and at the time to be making that decision all signs pointed to it going to the scrapyard.


I saw the test firing of the 30mm GPU-5A gun pod on the F-16 centerline. The airplane was on jacks firing into a berm with Lake Worth in the background. There were all kinds of problems with vibrations into the flight control accelerometers (flight controls would go haywire), and pylon/fuselage flexure (couldn't keep the burst on target due to excessive dispersion).
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 7:04:28 PM EDT
What they need too bring back is the Skyraider.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 7:06:31 PM EDT

Originally Posted By DnPRK:

Originally Posted By Black-Tiger:
The answer is no; You can't replace "The Silent Gun" (as the Iraqis called it back in Desert Storm), The A-10 can take damage that would knock 10 F35s out of the sky and still fly home.

The A-10 is a tanker's worst nightmare, specially if the tanker is the enemy. If I ever have to call for a CAS, my top choice would be an A-10 loaded with AGM-65D Maverick missiles and the 30mm.

Besides, how many modern fighter planes you know that can take this much damage and still fly?

www.globalsecurity.org/military/systems/aircraft/images/a-10_oif_battle-damage_mvc-006f.jpg

www.globalsecurity.org/military/systems/aircraft/images/a-10_oif_battle-damage_mvc-004f.jpg

www.globalsecurity.org/military/systems/aircraft/images/a-10_oif_battle-damage_mvc-003f.jpg

www.globalsecurity.org/military/systems/aircraft/images/A-10-AZ.jpg
Is a thing of sheer brutal beauty.



Yeah they're tough, but when they're ALL shot to shit like the bird in the photo, how will you answer the next call for air support? That damage was done by an old SA-7, not one of the modern Igla-S or Qianwei-2 that are better than our Stinger.



57mm eyeball guided AA.

The problem, with A2A and A2G, is that targets still have to be visually ID'ed before they are engaged.

So we have super weapons that can be fired from 30,000 feet 25 miles away....................... but the actual use range is much less due to the NEED to make sure that an M2/M3 wasn't just targeted instead of a BMP.

Plus, that A-10 can carry something like 14 Maverick missiles, which can be fired from some distance away. But the often don't because they are called aupon to attack "low value" area targets. No one thinks destroying a third rate AFV with a $500,000 missile is a good strategy. That 30mm is far cheaper, and can be used for area and point targets.

During OIF 3ID attacked 2 Republican Guard Divisions, and 1 Armored Infarty Regiment, that the USAF said they had killed 90% of thier vehicles. Guess what, they still had 80%+ of their vehicles. The 3ID then killed the vehicles, that the AF said they had already killed.

Apparently, the Iraqi army, in a fairly flat, open, country had found ways to hide from or fool the precision guided munutions that were rained down on them.

What happens when the US has to fight a more capable enemy, in less favorable conditions?

I bet the MK-I eyebal looking through a HUD, with a gun pipper is far harder to fool.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 7:08:13 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/5/2006 7:08:28 PM EDT by Spade]

Originally Posted By ARDOC:
What they need too bring back is the Skyraider.



My grandfather was an ANGLICO in Korea and said they quit using jets for CAS because only the Corsairs, Skyraiders, and other piston guys could really get down where they needed them.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 7:22:12 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ARDOC:
What they need too bring back is the Skyraider.





Link Posted: 4/5/2006 7:23:36 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Zakk_Wylde_470:

Originally Posted By ARDOC:
What they need too bring back is the Skyraider.



www.richard-seaman.com/Aircraft/AirShows/Chino2004/Sampler/Ad4Skyraider.jpg




go sandy's!
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 7:47:54 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Napoleon_Tanerite:

Originally Posted By Zakk_Wylde_470:

Originally Posted By ARDOC:
What they need too bring back is the Skyraider.



www.richard-seaman.com/Aircraft/AirShows/Chino2004/Sampler/Ad4Skyraider.jpg




go sandy's!



You want to be Navy, right?
Then it's either an "Able Dog" or a "Spad".
That "Sandy" shit is Air Force.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 7:51:31 PM EDT

Originally Posted By KA3B:

Originally Posted By Napoleon_Tanerite:

Originally Posted By Zakk_Wylde_470:

Originally Posted By ARDOC:
What they need too bring back is the Skyraider.



www.richard-seaman.com/Aircraft/AirShows/Chino2004/Sampler/Ad4Skyraider.jpg




go sandy's!



You want to be Navy, right?
Then it's either an "Able Dog" or a "Spad".
That "Sandy" shit is Air Force.



No, he's a wannabe zoomie, he got the Sandy mangina right.
Link Posted: 4/5/2006 7:52:10 PM EDT
Gotta have a cool picture of an A-10 for the topic....



Link Posted: 4/5/2006 7:59:12 PM EDT
Ummm

NO!
Link Posted: 4/6/2006 10:59:59 AM EDT

Originally Posted By CharlieR: Someone is going to have to loiter low and slow and use the mark one eyeball to see what is going on, and no, UAVs dont have the field of view, and just energize TOCs and staff guys to deconflict things by committee.
The A-10 is also a potent psychological weapon. It energizes your side and demoralizes the enemy. Just knowing an A-10 is nearby is enough to turn the tide.
Link Posted: 4/6/2006 11:22:27 AM EDT



Didn't a squadron of Harriers destroy a division of Iraqi units in Gulf II (broad daylight)?

Link Posted: 4/6/2006 1:35:24 PM EDT

Originally Posted By KlubMarcus:

Originally Posted By CharlieR: Someone is going to have to loiter low and slow and use the mark one eyeball to see what is going on, and no, UAVs dont have the field of view, and just energize TOCs and staff guys to deconflict things by committee.
The A-10 is also a potent psychological weapon. It energizes your side and demoralizes the enemy. Just knowing an A-10 is nearby is enough to turn the tide.


You mean like a 12 gauge shotty when you rack the slide?
Link Posted: 4/7/2006 2:58:51 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Wobblin-Goblin: You mean like a 12 gauge shotty when you rack the slide?
Exactly. Isn't it amazing how "racking the slide" can get into pretty much every arfcom thread?

Anyway, if we get in a real war, you know the USAF is going to hand out press propaganda stating that A-10's are being deployed on ALL fronts and the factory is being re-opened.
Link Posted: 4/7/2006 3:04:20 PM EDT

Originally Posted By KlubMarcus:

Originally Posted By CharlieR: Someone is going to have to loiter low and slow and use the mark one eyeball to see what is going on, and no, UAVs dont have the field of view, and just energize TOCs and staff guys to deconflict things by committee.
The A-10 is also a potent psychological weapon. It energizes your side and demoralizes the enemy. Just knowing an A-10 is nearby is enough to turn the tide.



There aint NOTHING they could tape/glue/weld onto an F-35 that's as intimidating as the GAU-8.

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