Future UK Combat Aircraft (Project Tempest)

Contains threads on Royal Air Force equipment of the past, present and future.
Markam
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Re: Future UK Combat Aircraft (Project Tempest)

Post by Markam »

An article from 2021 mentioned it clearly it would *not* be carrier capable, but it is still early and things may change.
https://ukdefencejournal.org.uk/mod-con ... r-capable/

There are only a few places that would want to buy a STOBAR/CATOBAR fighter on export, and only the UK carriers of the partner nation (maybe Japan in the future) could have this capability as is. But maybe a carrier version could be made after the fact (like they tried and failed with the Eurofighter for India, or the likely doable Sea Gripen), hard to say without actually coming up with a design to begin with.

With STOBAR/CATOBAR likely to be added to the QE carriers at some point (assuming Project Ark Royal does not get nixed), I think it would be a good idea to buy Sea Gripen (which is 30%ish UK made, and they will let us build it in the UK) to supplement the F-35 as a cost-effective option (cheaper airframe with 1/2 the hourly flight cost) and Electronic Warfare plane like the growler. I would try to back out of the F-35 purchases if possible, as it is going to bankrupt the budget at this rate.

Speaking of cost-effectiveness, assuming the F-35/22 R&D costs were an outlier, and it can be kept reasonable with GCAP, hopefully the unit cost at the very least can be kept well below the F-35 (which recently went up).

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Re: Future UK Combat Aircraft (Project Tempest)

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Jensy wrote: 24 Mar 2024, 16:45 I think Labour's union connections, and the value of thousands of highly skilled jobs
Didn't stop the tosser Healey from cancelling TSR2.

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Re: Future UK Combat Aircraft (Project Tempest)

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mrclark303 wrote: 24 Mar 2024, 22:34 F35B is effectively a modern take on P1154 the Admiralty wanted 60 years ago
Pretty sure the Admiralty wanted the Phantom. I would.
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Re: Future UK Combat Aircraft (Project Tempest)

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Jensy wrote: 24 Mar 2024, 23:25 But I've never found TSR-2 aesthetically pleasing!
Boooooooo
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Re: Future UK Combat Aircraft (Project Tempest)

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Markam wrote: 25 Mar 2024, 01:48 peaking of cost-effectiveness, assuming the F-35/22 R&D costs were an outlier, and it can be kept reasonable with GCAP, hopefully the unit cost at the very least can be kept well below the F-35 (which recently went up).
Not a hope in hell and by the way, F-35 purchase price is cheaper than its competitors like Typhoon.

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Re: Future UK Combat Aircraft (Project Tempest)

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Ron5 wrote: 25 Mar 2024, 13:03
Markam wrote: 25 Mar 2024, 01:48 peaking of cost-effectiveness, assuming the F-35/22 R&D costs were an outlier, and it can be kept reasonable with GCAP, hopefully the unit cost at the very least can be kept well below the F-35 (which recently went up).
Not a hope in hell and by the way, F-35 purchase price is cheaper than its competitors like Typhoon.
The F35B costs far more than the F35A due to its lift fan etc, but is still cheaper than Typhoon. Not sure what the TR3 version costs and Block 4 software will cost. Also costs of uk weapon integration. At least their is some safety in numbers to keep prices down.

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Re: Future UK Combat Aircraft (Project Tempest)

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Ron5 wrote: 25 Mar 2024, 12:49
Jensy wrote: 24 Mar 2024, 16:45 I think Labour's union connections, and the value of thousands of highly skilled jobs
Didn't stop the tosser Healey from cancelling TSR2.
True enough, but at the time we were also building a new class of very expensive SSBN.... oh wait.... :D

In all seriousness, along with P.1154 and HS.681 the RAF was more than slightly taking the piss. Not least as TSR-2 was looking more like a V-Force replacement than a Canberra one.
Ron5 wrote: 25 Mar 2024, 12:52
Jensy wrote: 24 Mar 2024, 23:25 But I've never found TSR-2 aesthetically pleasing!
Boooooooo
It's too tall and skinny! Like a 90s supermodel... Not helped by being a cut and shut job by two companies who largely hated and distrusted each other.

Now, the Hawker P.1129 and the Vickers 589 on the other hand....

Image

Image

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Re: Future UK Combat Aircraft (Project Tempest)

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Jensy wrote: 25 Mar 2024, 14:15 True enough, but at the time we were also building a new class of very expensive SSBN.... oh wait.... :D
How much did the tosser waste by ordering F-111's and then cancelling the order? Wilson's mob was dazzled by supposed Yankee technical superiority. Too dumb to realize it was actually superior Yankee salesmanship.
Jensy wrote: 25 Mar 2024, 14:15 Now, the Hawker P.1129 and the Vickers 589 on the other hand....
Srsly??
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Re: Future UK Combat Aircraft (Project Tempest)

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Ron5 wrote: 25 Mar 2024, 14:26
Jensy wrote: 25 Mar 2024, 14:15 True enough, but at the time we were also building a new class of very expensive SSBN.... oh wait.... :D
How much did the tosser waste by ordering F-111's and then cancelling the order? Wilson's mob was dazzled by supposed Yankee technical superiority. Too dumb to realize it was actually superior Yankee salesmanship.
Jensy wrote: 25 Mar 2024, 14:15 Now, the Hawker P.1129 and the Vickers 589 on the other hand....
Srsly??
The heart wants what the heart wants... Low or variable geometry wings.
:shifty:

Yeah we got sold on (actually quite generous) industrial offsets which of course disappeared as soon as we were too poor to buy F-111. Which wasn't exactly a dream aircraft to own, in terms of maintenance and upgrades.

Not to piss everyone off... I'd have probably favoured a UK spec Mirage IV-B, with a British powerplant and lots more buccaneers.

Meanwhile over in camp SCAF, the German Aerospace Centre (DLR) has a rather fancy new model of a "possible future German fighter"...

Image


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Re: Future UK Combat Aircraft (Project Tempest)

Post by mrclark303 »

Ron5 wrote: 25 Mar 2024, 12:51
mrclark303 wrote: 24 Mar 2024, 22:34 F35B is effectively a modern take on P1154 the Admiralty wanted 60 years ago
Pretty sure the Admiralty wanted the Phantom. I would.
I think you're right Ron, the Phantom was always the first choice of Navy.

The P1154 was a politically forced solution, in reality it was a technological 'reach' to far for the 1960's.

Even as the prototype was being constructed, serious doubts existed in the team regarding controllability in the transition to and from vertical flight and it's supersonic plenum chamber burning BS100 still had many kinks to iron out.

On top of this, they were going to squeeze in a sophisticated brand new tandom cockpit second gen nav attack system into the naval jet!

A brand new ground breaking SVTOL design, with a brand new revolutionary engine and the latest avionics, what could possibly go wrong!

Cancellation was probably (and sadly) the right call...

It's a shame it wasn't allowed to continue as a technology demonstrator programme however, it might well have led to a supersonic Harrier in the 1970's. Many lessons would certainly have been learnt.
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Re: Future UK Combat Aircraft (Project Tempest)

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Jensy wrote: 25 Mar 2024, 14:31 Not to piss everyone off... I'd have probably favoured a UK spec Mirage IV-B, with a British powerplant and lots more buccaneers.
In 20/20 hindsight, a transonic or supersonic Buccaneer variant (as outlined in Ray Boot's wonderful autobiography) would have been the best answer. Would have tagged more than a few exports too.

The remaining design capacity could have been working on the next gen fighter.
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Re: Future UK Combat Aircraft (Project Tempest)

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Ron5 wrote: 25 Mar 2024, 15:49
Jensy wrote: 25 Mar 2024, 14:31 Not to piss everyone off... I'd have probably favoured a UK spec Mirage IV-B, with a British powerplant and lots more buccaneers.
In 20/20 hindsight, a transonic or supersonic Buccaneer variant (as outlined in Ray Boot's wonderful autobiography) would have been the best answer. Would have tagged more than a few exports too.

The remaining design capacity could have been working on the next gen fighter.
I'm tempted to ask our dear mods for a "Fantasy 1960s British Aviation" thread...

Well, I decided to go ahead with it:
viewtopic.php?p=165795#p165795
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Re: Future UK Combat Aircraft (Project Tempest)

Post by Ron5 »

If I could have given that comment 10 thumbs up, I would have :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup:
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Re: Future UK Combat Aircraft (Project Tempest)

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Ron5 wrote: 25 Mar 2024, 16:04 If I could have given that comment 10 thumbs up, I would have :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup:
Bring it on!

IMHO we needed two aircraft - an evolved supersonic Buccaneer and an evolved supersonic Hunter ie P1121. And then continue spiral developments for about the next 20+ years while tinkering with the advanced stuff like P1154 in the background as a low key research project. If the Navy need a Vixen replacement they can buy a small batch of F8s. TSR2 was a financial sink-hole with no export market
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Re: Future UK Combat Aircraft (Project Tempest)

Post by Markam »

This is not really new news, but Japan has formally approved the future export of GCAP this morning, overriding historic restrictions on export, limited to GCAP;

https://abcnews.go.com/International/wi ... -108484603

It was widely reported earlier this month that approval was to be given but this morning put the rubber stamp on the change in policy.

Unrelated to the above but there was a report on GCAP by a Japanese news programme that was uploaded to youtube;


Unfortunately, it is only in Japanese but there were some tidbits about Japanese previous bitter experience with the J-2, plus some speculation on workshare arrangements. They seem to suggest it will be 40/40/20 split between Japan, the UK and Italy, which I am not sure sits too well with the Italians but I understand this is still under negotiation. Plus some talk about the IHI made XF9 (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IHI_Corporation_XF9) engine they were developing for their programme, but it was more likely that a new engine built together with Rolls-Royce would be the engine used, with IHI contributing advanced materials and their expertise. They kept going over which country is the "main" partner of the programme, with the commentators suggesting it was clearly the UK, but by making the first project lead a Japanese person was an attempt to make Japan feel like they were equal partners.

Edit: Small update, apparently the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs has released a statement expressing "serious concern" on the move by Japan. Well, China can get bent as far as I am concerned.
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Re: Future UK Combat Aircraft (Project Tempest)

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I like how the first reply to that article is another article pointing out delays to the T-7.

https://breakingdefense.com/2024/02/boe ... hallenges/

Boeing is an absolute mess lately. Be interested to see what the RAF picks to replace the Hawk; Does BAE have any skin in the game with the Saab/Boeing T-7?

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Re: Future UK Combat Aircraft (Project Tempest)

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" A fixed-price contract for the program’s development has additionally forced Boeing to absorb approximately $1.3 billion in losses to date. "

Read that and weep, it would never happen here. Not with Boeing, not with BAE (Nimrod), not with GDUK Land Systems.

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