Does the Navy need a stealthy A-6 intruder?

Military aircraft - Post cold war aircraft, including for example B-2, Gripen, F-18E/F Super Hornet, Rafale, and Typhoon.
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jessmo112

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Unread post20 Nov 2021, 03:48

https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-navy-r ... 1637248615

Buisness insider has a great article.
Did the Navy miss an opportunity
To have a stealthy unavailable?
Will the NGAD take up strike missions?
Discuss
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madrat

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Unread post20 Nov 2021, 16:16

F-35C is relatively better than just a stealthy A-6. Instead of racks of freefall 1,0000-pounders it will use standoff bombs that may not have the same bang but are much more likely to hit what they aim for. MQ-25 is going to project F-35C range, and F-35B when necessary, so its kind of moot to ask for a stealthy A-6 today.
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mixelflick

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Unread post20 Nov 2021, 16:46

Couldn't read the entire article, but we've been here before. The flying dorito debacle... A-12 Avenger.

Beyond the fact the F-35C can do the job, I don't think you're ever going to see another "single mission" USN warplane (at least in the fighter/attack category). Budgets being what they are, any fighter built without a strike function is a non-starter. Likewise any "strike" bird with no ability to defend itself air to air is too IMO. You simply must do double duty as a fast jet these days, at least in the USN...
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wrightwing

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Unread post21 Nov 2021, 19:42

I'm guessing UCAVs will eventually serve that function, in addition to F-35C/NGAD with stand off weapons.
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quicksilver

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Unread post21 Nov 2021, 20:28

Dr Hendrix has written on this theme before —

https://www.cnas.org/publications/repor ... r-aviation
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hornetfinn

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Unread post22 Nov 2021, 08:16

mixelflick wrote:Couldn't read the entire article, but we've been here before. The flying dorito debacle... A-12 Avenger.

Beyond the fact the F-35C can do the job, I don't think you're ever going to see another "single mission" USN warplane (at least in the fighter/attack category). Budgets being what they are, any fighter built without a strike function is a non-starter. Likewise any "strike" bird with no ability to defend itself air to air is too IMO. You simply must do double duty as a fast jet these days, at least in the USN...


Agreed that F-35C is incredible aircraft for the US Navy and does everything they could want. Actually F-35C IS a stealthy A-6 Intruder, although it's also way more than that. F-35C has pretty similar maximum payload and range. A-6 great strength was awesome avionics (including FLIR and terrain following radar) and F-35 has currently by far the best avionics systems available anywhere and carries FLIR as standard (EOTS). Of course F-35 can do VLO stealth bombing at least as well as A-12 could've but can also do vast amount of other missions that A-12 or A-6 simply could not have (like air-to-air stuff). I don't see any reason for some new stealthy A-6 Intruder style aircraft when F-35C can easily do that and way more while being available and relatively inexpensive. I think best ways of getting more range would be improving tanking capability (MQ-25s), possibly addingEFTs and developing those Adaptive Cycle Engines.
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Corsair1963

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Unread post22 Nov 2021, 10:26

While, a Modern-Day A-12 Avenger would be nice. The current F-35C is really more than adequate....



"IMHO"
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hornetfinn

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Unread post22 Nov 2021, 11:51

Corsair1963 wrote:While, a Modern-Day A-12 Avenger would be nice. The current F-35C is really more than adequate....


How do you envision a modern day A-12 would be like and how would it differ from F-35C? What kind of missions it would/could do instead of what F-35C can do?

And I agree that F-35C is more than adequate... :D
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jessmo112

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Unread post22 Nov 2021, 15:34

I guess the thinking is that a much deeper magazine in stealth mode would be the answer.
Like the article cited an upsized ucas with about as much fuel as an F-35 but a deeper internal load.
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element1loop

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Unread post22 Nov 2021, 23:35

jessmo112 wrote:I guess the thinking is that a much deeper magazine in stealth mode would be the answer.
Like the article cited an upsized ucas with about as much fuel as an F-35 but a deeper internal load.


B-21
Accel + Alt + VLO + DAS + MDF + Radial Distance = LIFE . . . Always choose Stealth
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element1loop

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Unread post22 Nov 2021, 23:45

hornetfinn wrote:And I agree that F-35C is more than adequate... :D


But don't you think the USN really, really, reeeally needs to blow half a trillion on a shiny new F/A-XX, to enter service nine years late, and $122 billion over budget? Or just go for Souper-doupa Lightning NEW GENERATION air power instead? Come on, you do want to spend half-a-trill for no reason don't you? Just think of all the contractors offering you a gig in your later years. Make the right choice for democracy mate!
Accel + Alt + VLO + DAS + MDF + Radial Distance = LIFE . . . Always choose Stealth
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Gums

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Unread post25 Nov 2021, 01:08

Salute!

Remember, the A-6 and A-7 and the A-1 were mainly used in combat for strike missions or CAS/CSAR. Good loadout and low altitude employment with "staying power". i.e. CAS where repeated passes were required.

Those days are gone, and we should just let them go for our high value platforms and the enemy we are likely to face. Let the small countries with all the warlords duke it out, no matter which side has the Tucano or other light attack variant.

As with the Intruder, we Sluf drivers could bring a dozen or maybe 2 less 500 pounders to the fray and stay long enuf to make a difference. The scenario we see in the future and today has nothing like what I and others faced in 'nam or even the newbies in Iraq I or 'Raqi II later. Handwriting was on the wall, huh?

Many factors now in play, and a bomb truck that has staying power does not seem in the deck.

Gums sends...
Gums
Viper pilot '79
"God in your guts, good men at your back, wings that stay on - and Tally Ho!"
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Corsair1963

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Unread post25 Nov 2021, 08:22

hornetfinn wrote:
Corsair1963 wrote:While, a Modern-Day A-12 Avenger would be nice. The current F-35C is really more than adequate....


How do you envision a modern day A-12 would be like and how would it differ from F-35C? What kind of missions it would/could do instead of what F-35C can do?

And I agree that F-35C is more than adequate... :D


Pretty much a flying wing like the original A-12 Avenger II.

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