Air Force One and Marine One Replacements

#1
An interesting if perhaps slightly partisan article on the programme to replace the USAF pair of VC-25As used for presidential transport; when POTUS is on board, they are of course referred to as 'Air Force One' (although to be pedantic, so too is any aircraft flying POTUS).

Some may recall that the cost of the replacement aircraft became an election issue with Trump claiming Obama was paying over the odds and that he'd 'hold Boeing to account' to get a good deal for taxpayers. However, it now appears that modification of the 2 x 747-8is has increased to $5.3B, a third more than planned and almost identical to the figure originally criticised by Trump! Moreover, this is after funding concerns have resulted in the deletion of capabilities such as AAR for the new jets.

Ironically, the aircraft selected for modification had originally been produced for the Russian airline Transaero (although, given Trump's recent 'complete and total exoneration' from claims of dubious links with Russia, this was obviously entirely innocent!). When that airline went into liquidation, Aeroflot seized holdings but didn't want the 747-8is which have subsequently been stored in the open in Southern California.

If and when the pair of VC-25Bs enter service, they will surpass the B-2 as the most expensive aircraft in US military history.

Meanwhile, the 23 planned VH-92A replacements for the USMC's ageing fleet of 11 x VH-3D and 8 x VH-60N 'Marine One' helicopters, most famously used to transport POTUS to and from DC, will enter service later this year. Of note, the procurement of the VH-92s was also controversial when a planned procurement of VH-71 (a US variant of the Merlin) was cancelled in favour of the Sikorsky product. The new VH-72s are now being seen around the US capital, presumably on representative profiles for Test and Eval.

Regards,
MM
 
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#2
trump should/could get a 737 max 8 as cheap as chips at the moment
and like he says the media/faa spread lies so safe as anything then!
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#3
I know each aircraft has a comprehensive set of comms kit, a defensive suite, EMP protection and a reconfiguration internally but $5.8 Billion to modify is laughable.
 
#4
You have to admit though, the 747-8i is beautiful.
 
#5
You have to admit though, the 747-8i is beautiful.
Airliners and commercial aviation leaves me cold...

...unless that is they have manly lumps, bumps and weapons bays on them!






Regards,
MM
 
#6
How many miles of wall can he have for $5.8B ?
 
#7
He'd be better off with an A380 (probably be able to pick one up cheap off Singapore Airways) and a couple of Leonardos...
 
#8
#9
An interesting if perhaps slightly partisan article on the programme to replace the USAF pair of VC-25As used for presidential transport; when POTUS is on board, they are of course referred to as 'Air Force One' (although to be pedantic, so too is any aircraft flying POTUS).

Some may recall that the cost of the replacement aircraft became an election issue with Trump claiming Obama was paying over the odds and that he'd 'hold Boeing to account' to get a good deal for taxpayers. However, it now appears that modification of the 2 x 747-8is has increased to $5.3B, a third more than planned and almost identical to the figure originally criticised by Trump! Moreover, this is after funding concerns have resulted in the deletion of capabilities such as AAR for the new jets.

Ironically, the aircraft selected for modification had originally been produced for the Russian airline Transaero (although, given Trump's recent 'complete and total exoneration' from claims of dubious links with Russia, this was obviously entirely innocent!). When that airline went into liquidation, Aeroflot seized holdings but didn't want the 747-8is which have subsequently been stored in the open in Southern California.

If and when the pair of VC-25Bs enter service, they will surpass the B-2 as the most expensive aircraft in US military history.

Meanwhile, the 23 planned VH-92A replacements for the USMC's ageing fleet of 11 x VH-3D and 8 x VH-60N 'Marine One' helicopters, most famously used to transport POTUS to and from DC, will enter service later this year. Of note, the procurement of the VH-92s was also controversial when a planned procurement of VH-71 (a US variant of the Merlin) was cancelled in favour of the Sikorsky product. The new VH-72s are now being seen around the US capital, presumably on representative profiles for Test and Eval.

Regards,
MM
When has any defense program not escalated in cost in the recent history? Color me surprised!
 
#10
No air to air refuelling?

I bet they're hoping to always be flying the friendly skies. Otherwise, it could get nasty needing a top-up at 40K odd feet.
 
#12
FoC. You're one of us now. Please spell correct, there's a good chap!
Shouldn't it be "Please spell correctly, there's a good chap!"?
 
#14
Not quite, the helo's are referred to as Marine One.
Only if it's a Marine helicopter! :)

In fairness, I should of course have stated 'any USAF aircraft.' That would include a USAF helicopter just as the S-3B which carried Bush Jr to the USS Lincoln to rather prematurely claim 'job done' in Iraq used the callsign 'Navy One'!

No air to air refuelling?

I bet they're hoping to always be flying the friendly skies. Otherwise, it could get nasty needing a top-up at 40K odd feet.
I think it's more the point that it may take a little while to find and get to an airfield capable of taking a 747 that's not a glowing, irradiated piece of debris strewen concrete come the day when this is really needed! Even on normal deployments with POTUS, it may be considered sub-optimal to stop for gas on some routes.

Regards,
MM
 
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#15
Airliners and commercial aviation leaves me cold...

...unless that is they have manly lumps, bumps and weapons bays on them!






Regards,
MM
You see, I'm the other way round. I prefer the sleekness of an A340-600 to AWACS, although the Sentinel is a nice looking airframe.
 
#16
Airliners and commercial aviation leaves me cold...

...unless that is they have manly lumps, bumps and weapons bays on them!






Regards,
MM
Whilst the sentry and others look right

The Mainstay to me always has the look of wrong airframe selected -cant put my finger on it ( possibly the high wing) - but it just looks wrong (as an AEW)
 
#17
One has to admire Trump's business acumen. A little like how he was going to hold LM's feet to the fire over the F-35 - and then took already-expected cost-per-unit reductions and claimed them as his own.
 

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