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Re: F-15X: USAF Seems Interested

Unread postPosted: 22 May 2020, 16:11
by mixelflick
weasel1962 wrote:
zero-one wrote:I think the EX will replace Guard units and free up the 119th F-22's and replace them with F-15s
This may bring back all Raptors to front line squadrons bringing the total to 6 active.

Curious, is it possible, no matter how expensive to bring all 180 Raptors to combat ready status and maybe activate 10 combat ready front line squadrons which was the original plan for the F-22.


The whole point of getting the F-15EX is to leverage on the similarity to F-15C, minimizing equipment and re-training. It would be strange to u-turn and not utilize this having put this as a primary driver for the business case.

Per CRS, although the buy was for 187, 195 got built. Almost all of them are blk 10 and above which means they are air combat capable. There needs to be WPS, training sqns in peacetime. Its pretty basic. Doesn't mean instructors or test pilots don't get sent into combat or planes in those sqns can't be deployed....if the need arises or if volunteer. Consider that only the best pilots become instructors...not sure if they rotate instructors to units?

I hope some of our more esteemed posters who were instructors can share how that volunteer/deployment process works.


First time I'm hearing 195 were built, that's welcome news. Does that include prototypes, or were they all F-22A's?
Needless to say, every one is a precious national asset - as are their pilots. Was also happy to hear nearly all are combat capable, albeit I understand that to mean "not without a lot of work" if pressed back into service/front line work.

As for the F-15EX, the situation seems pretty fluid. Hopefully due to this engine development whatever winds up powering it will have even more thrust. I was suprised to hear someone here say the new EX would be without any/many improvements. How could that possibly be? One look at Boeing's page describing it and its clear these aircraft are going to be a massive step up: Fastest mission computer flying, possibly the most powerful AESA flying, new EW suite, two new weapons stations, FBW controls, complete glass cockpit. And of course, more powerful motors.

I would like to see them replace all F-15C's in ANG units, and I think that's a pretty safe bet. They will not replace F-15E's (initially), but its hard to imagine them NOT doing so as E models age out. The two crewmembers are already there, as is everything else needed to do so. And of course, we all know how much use USAF has for the Strike Eagle - it's always dropping something on someone. Massively capable airframe, particularly insofar as weapons carrying capability.

I wish we had more F-22's, but that's water under the bridge. The F-35 will be an excellent compliment, at least until such time as PCA gets here..

Re: F-15X: USAF Seems Interested

Unread postPosted: 22 May 2020, 16:56
by sferrin
Corsair1963 wrote:
wrightwing wrote:
madrat wrote:



The problem isn't the engine, it is the airframe. It was engineered for engines that require extending or restarting old designs.


Bottom line, F-119s won't fit into an F-15s airframe. They're longer, and have a larger diameter.


Even "if" the F119's would fit. It would never happen as it would take to long and cost to much to incorporate them in the F-15EX. Such a proposal is a non-starter from the get go......


Well not only that but I don't think they're even making F119s anymore.

Re: F-15X: USAF Seems Interested

Unread postPosted: 22 May 2020, 17:40
by XanderCrews
sprstdlyscottsmn wrote:
weasel1962 wrote:The whole point of getting the F-15EX is to leverage on the similarity to F-15C, minimizing equipment and re-training. It would be strange to u-turn and not utilize this having put this as a primary driver for the business case.


Which I always found hilarious because there is not a single system more than skin deep other than the ejector seat that is the same. The structure is that of the E, not the C, and all the engines and avionics are 100% new to F-15C squadrons.

'
Yes, the USAF is basically trying to "pull a Super Hornet" here and I don't believe for even a second the CPFH will be cheaper than the F-35. What a bold faced lie


Theyve already discussed the test articles that will have to be flown at Edwards and certified. Its not plug and play or turn key like they've claimed.

Re: F-15X: USAF Seems Interested

Unread postPosted: 22 May 2020, 17:55
by quicksilver
The EX happened because BA went to the USAF w an unsolicited proposal. BA did enough homework and due diligence to understand and craft a ‘sellable’ rational that addressed how such a proposal might scratch a service itch in terms of force structure recap, budget outlook and future ‘requirements.’ Probably some other factors but that would just be my opinion from the cheap seats.

We might recall that there were public quotes from service leadership about no desire for the jet...ISTR, in the fall/early winter of ‘19?

The cost of a base standup (milcon) for F-35 is not insignificant. That was part of the cost avoidance as well.

Re: F-15X: USAF Seems Interested

Unread postPosted: 22 May 2020, 17:57
by wrightwing
zero-one wrote:I think the EX will replace Guard units and free up the 119th F-22's and replace them with F-15s
This may bring back all Raptors to front line squadrons bringing the total to 6 active.

Curious, is it possible, no matter how expensive to bring all 180 Raptors to combat ready status and maybe activate 10 combat ready front line squadrons which was the original plan for the F-22.

Technically it's possible, but there are a number of reasons why it would never happen. First off, there will always be a need for training jets, as you need to train F-22 pilots. There will always be a certain number of jets needed for attrition. There will always be a certain number of jets being used as test beds, for upgrades. Lastly, there's this thing known as economic reality.

Re: F-15X: USAF Seems Interested

Unread postPosted: 23 May 2020, 03:19
by weasel1962
mixelflick wrote:First time I'm hearing 195 were built, that's welcome news. Does that include prototypes, or were they all F-22A's?


See Pg 9, table 2.
https://fas.org/sgp/crs/weapons/RL31673.pdf

Re: F-15X: USAF Seems Interested

Unread postPosted: 23 May 2020, 03:37
by sprstdlyscottsmn
Huh, I always thought it was 187

Re: F-15X: USAF Seems Interested

Unread postPosted: 23 May 2020, 05:24
by f119doctor
Tail numbers 4001 thru 4195 include the first 8 flight test aircraft. 187 production configuration F-22A aircraft.

Re: F-15X: USAF Seems Interested

Unread postPosted: 23 May 2020, 07:36
by disconnectedradical
f119doctor wrote:Tail numbers 4001 thru 4195 include the first 8 flight test aircraft. 187 production configuration F-22A aircraft.

I have to ask, is F119 bigger than the F110 and won’t fit in an F-15? I thought I read some time ago F119 barely fits.

Re: F-15X: USAF Seems Interested

Unread postPosted: 23 May 2020, 14:58
by sprstdlyscottsmn
Thanks 119doc, that clears it up.

Re: F-15X: USAF Seems Interested

Unread postPosted: 23 May 2020, 16:14
by f119doctor
disconnectedradical wrote:
f119doctor wrote:Tail numbers 4001 thru 4195 include the first 8 flight test aircraft. 187 production configuration F-22A aircraft.

I have to ask, is F119 bigger than the F110 and won’t fit in an F-15? I thought I read some time ago F119 barely fits.


Yes, the F119 is significantly larger than the F100 and F110 engines installed in the F-15 variants, and is mounted differently. It would take a major modification to the rear fuselage to fit the F119, and center of gravity would also a significant issue to resolve.

Re: F-15X: USAF Seems Interested

Unread postPosted: 23 May 2020, 23:39
by marauder2048
quicksilver wrote:We might recall that there were public quotes from service leadership about no desire for the jet...ISTR, in the fall/early winter of ‘19?


Thanks to the DODIG investigation of Shanahan, we know a lot more than we did:

The CAPE study that was at the root of this was completed by June 2017.

It couldn’t have any convincing data on the F-15EX because the F-15QA hadn’t even
flown. That’s probably why the study had no impact on the original AF FY19 budget.

Prior to CAPE’s hijacking of the Air Force’s budget (it’s openly admitted by Goldfein and Wilson that
they did not request the F-15EX) it looks like the Air Force intended to:

a. Re-wing the F-15C/D fleet with the E-wing. The USG owns the design rights and this effort
would be competed; Boeing outsourcing wing manufacturing of the F-15E wing all over the world
would not guarantee them a win.

b. Complete longeron upgrades

c. Complete ADCP upgrades as the budget permitted

d. Provision the F-15C (via the F-15E wing) for EPAWSS as the budget allowed


Holmes testified that a + b would cost ~$10 - 12 million per bird and increase F-15 life
into the 2040s.

The central argument against this approach was: readiness. It would take time for these
things to occur during which readiness would necessarily drop.

But this was because the CAPE fighter study was intertwined with Mattis’ readiness
directive which has been abandoned.

quicksilver wrote:The cost of a base standup (milcon) for F-35 is not insignificant. That was part of the cost avoidance as well.

It's ~ $1.2 million per aircraft. Meanwhile, the gross/weapon systems costs for the F-15EX has only
moved in one direction since the initial projections: ~ $15 million more than the F-35A.

So if I add the dominant MILCON + pilot conversion cost (RAND says the latter is $9.4 million) the F-35A is still ahead.

So then you are back to the controversial case of CPFH; the F-15QA has just flown and the amount of
CPFH that can been squeezed out of any derivative is limited.

The F-35 is at a well known position of the bath-tub curb for CPFH i.e. they will come down.

And more to the point, CPFH estimation error in the AF has been around 25%.
So whatever advantage the F-15EX has is practically in the statistical noise bucket.

Re: F-15X: USAF Seems Interested

Unread postPosted: 23 May 2020, 23:52
by marauder2048
Other flimsy arguments

The CAPE official who briefed journalists on the decision also intimated "industrial base considerations"
as a justification.

But because this actually has a very specific meaning under the FAR that actually has to be proven,
no F-15EX contract or solicitation has used it.

If the argument is that building a weapon system helps position you for a building the next weapon system
consider that Boeing, the only builder of the Army's attack helicopter, did not even place
in the competition to build the next helicopter that will replace half of the Army's attack helicopters.

Re: F-15X: USAF Seems Interested

Unread postPosted: 24 May 2020, 01:06
by quicksilver
I’m not arguing in favor of EX, simply pointing out ‘arguments’ used in the process to justify an un-justifiable position. Your numbers are merely inconvenient facts in a wholly political circumstance. Such is the reality we live in.

Re: F-15X: USAF Seems Interested

Unread postPosted: 24 May 2020, 01:13
by quicksilver
“CPFH estimation error in the AF has been around 25%.“

Perhaps, but that suggests a baseline that doesn’t exist. As the RAND study on the topic of some years ago suggests, apples-to-apples wrt to CPFH is all but impossible. Those that suggest otherwise (not referring to you) are either ‘not factually informed’ or don’t know what they’re talking about.

Nuance intended. :salute: