"Royal Navy does not have enough ships" says new survey.

Mattb

LE
They're completely different.

The last time I looked, an A-10 can't hover or fire at things from behind cover.
True, but that doesn't necessarily make it less effective (and there's no reason it couldn't fire from behind cover). Much like with battleships, the ill-informed tend to get raging erections over the big gun, but I'd potentially advocate binning it to carry more fuel and sensors.

But I think there's still a question to be considered as to "slow" FW versus rotary for a dedicated CAS platform - certainly I've not heard of anyone downing an A-10 with an RPG.
 

Hohenidoom

Clanker
In a shock turn of events, survey confirms everything everyone has known for the past decade.

It continues to baffle my poor, underused brain just how we spend so very much money for so comparably little capability. A couple of Garibaldi-esque units probably wouldn't have gone amiss to supplement the Queens; but knowing our luck they'd have cost eleventy trillion quid and an old Boulton & Watt effort for propulsion.
 
No. You're back again to chopping legacy types to reduce number of types in service and buying as many as possible of newer types.

Our Harriers and Jaguars were a sunk cost. But it would have cost additional money to carry on operating them.

The point is, and has to be, to be able to operate in the most contested environments. Hence why we're buying Wedgetail; our AWACS haven't been upgraded and soon won't be able to enable us to go to some of the places we might need to. Hence why we bought the P-8, and not some MPA; because to hunt modern submarines you need the absolute best otherwise you may as well just not bother.

Having 200 of a notional older type which will be lost as soon as they come into contact with the opposition makes no sense whatsoever. Why stop at 200, why not buy 2,000 Sopwith Camels? I'm not being facetious, it's a good illustration of a valid point. You'll make a bigger hole in the enemy with 10 Gen 5 in both cases.

We don't have the luxury of a hi-lo mix. But the 'hi' is very, very good at the 'lo' as and when it's needed to be. Them's the realities.
But you folks do not replace what you have on a one for basis. You buy less and end up with more commitments.
The Wedgetail and Poseidon are nice bits of kit but don't you think you will need more than 5 and 9 respectively to be a global player??! Unless you plan on defending the home island only and ignoring other commitments you don't have enough pie to go around.

50 F-35's might be uber wonderful, but if only 20 are available the USAF won't risk to many of them on the inglorious job of CAS which the Army will need. The A-10 however is a purpose built tank, and if the Red Legs and other assets can degrade the Russian Air defenses they will have a better chance of doing their job. One has to be willing to accept losses and in a near peer fight some units will get get hammered.

The UK goes high, at the expense of numbers. Which is wonderful if you don't have any other ambitions. Not so wonderful when you want to be a global player without the forces to back those dreams.
 

Cold_Collation

LE
Book Reviewer
But we already them in the inventory, to replace them on a one for one basis for F-35 A's at 90 million a pop is a very, very expensive proposition when we have the F-16's to phase out. Money is going to be an ever dwindling resource, and unless commitments are reduced numbers are necessary.
There's a difference between that and artificially keeping something on inventory for political reasons. That's what's happening with the A-10. It's not just the numbers. It's life-extending the airframes, it's parts, training, the whole package.

Even operating fleets within fleets is pricey. An F-16 isn't just an F-16. If you've several different marks on fleet they'll all need different bits... £££s, or, more correctly, $$$s.

And it's not just numbers. How much more capability do you get out of one F-35 than 'X' A-10s?

If a single F-35 can complete several CAS tasks in highly contested airspace in the time that it would simply take an A-10 to fly the same distance in uncontested airspace, then what's the point of spending the money on the A-10? The A-10 offers no capability as it can't even go into the contested space. And don't think just because we weren't losing aircraft that the airspace we've been operating is an easy environment. We've had to be careful. We've had to plan missions and be aware of threats, especially over Syria. Buy the F-35.

For comparison, in capability terms, I read somewhere once that an F-16 carries broadly the same payload as a B-17. But, to take the trips to Germany in WWII, it could have been there and back five times in the time that the B-17 went once. But - and here's the thing - the accuracy of the F-16's aiming systems would mean that the F-16 would only have to go once, whereas the B-17 (actually, many of them) might have to go back again and again until the target was hit. One man, one plane, one mission, versus many B-17s, people and flights. Buy the F-16.

The A-10 first flew 47 years ago. It was on the cusp then, in terms of peer conflict. It's way off the pace now.
 

Cold_Collation

LE
Book Reviewer
True, but that doesn't necessarily make it less effective (and there's no reason it couldn't fire from behind cover). Much like with battleships, the ill-informed tend to get raging erections over the big gun, but I'd potentially advocate binning it to carry more fuel and sensors.

But I think there's still a question to be considered as to "slow" FW versus rotary for a dedicated CAS platform - certainly I've not heard of anyone downing an A-10 with an RPG.
I disagree.
 

Cold_Collation

LE
Book Reviewer
But you folks do not replace what you have on a one for basis. You buy less and end up with more commitments.
The Wedgetail and Poseidon are nice bits of kit but don't you think you will need more than 5 and 9 respectively to be a global player??! Unless you plan on defending the home island only and ignoring other commitments you don't have enough pie to go around.

50 F-35's might be uber wonderful, but if only 20 are available the USAF won't risk to many of them on the inglorious job of CAS which the Army will need. The A-10 however is a purpose built tank, and if the Red Legs and other assets can degrade the Russian Air defenses they will have a better chance of doing their job. One has to be willing to accept losses and in a near peer fight some units will get get hammered.

The UK goes high, at the expense of numbers. Which is wonderful if you don't have any other ambitions. Not so wonderful when you want to be a global player without the forces to back those dreams.
If 20 F-35s are able to operate and come back, and 200 A-10s can't, buy the F-35. I don't think people realise how old the A-10 is.

The UK is unquestionably too small for some of its professed aims. But going top-end is a must or you might as well go home for reasons I've given.
 
There's a difference between that and artificially keeping something on inventory for political reasons. That's what's happening with the A-10. It's not just the numbers. It's life-extending the airframes, it's parts, training, the whole package.

Even operating fleets within fleets is pricey. An F-16 isn't just an F-16. If you've several different marks on fleet they'll all need different bits... £££s, or, more correctly, $$$s.

And it's not just numbers. How much more capability do you get out of one F-35 than 'X' A-10s?

If a single F-35 can complete several CAS tasks in highly contested airspace in the time that it would simply take an A-10 to fly the same distance in uncontested airspace, then what's the point of spending the money on the A-10? The A-10 offers no capability as it can't even go into the contested space. And don't think just because we weren't losing aircraft that the airspace we've been operating is an easy environment. We've had to be careful. We've had to plan missions and be aware of threats, especially over Syria. Buy the F-35.

For comparison, in capability terms, I read somewhere once that an F-16 carries broadly the same payload as a B-17. But, to take the trips to Germany in WWII, it could have been there and back five times in the time that the B-17 went once. But - and here's the thing - the accuracy of the F-16's aiming systems would mean that the F-16 would only have to go once, whereas the B-17 (actually, many of them) might have to go back again and again until the target was hit. One man, one plane, one mission, versus many B-17s, people and flights. Buy the F-16.

The A-10 first flew 47 years ago. It was on the cusp then, in terms of peer conflict. It's way off the pace now.
But 12 A-10's can provide more cas than 2 F-35's. The F-35's are wonderful but they will still incur losses like everything else. The A-10 is not going to do anything other than provide CAS over the FEBA. IT is not a deep strike platform, it is going to kill armor and infantry. Now if we magically had the ability to replace the A-10's on a one for one basis this very instant I would be inclined to do so. But we don't, and binning platforms with nothing lined up to take it's place just leaves the guys in the ground in the lurch. It is an impossible situation.
 

Cold_Collation

LE
Book Reviewer
But 12 A-10's can provide more cas than 2 F-35's. The F-35's are wonderful but they will still incur losses like everything else. The A-10 is not going to do anything other than provide CAS over the FEBA. IT is not a deep strike platform, it is going to kill armor and infantry. Now if we magically had the ability to replace the A-10's on a one for one basis this very instant I would be inclined to do so. But we don't, and binning platforms with nothing lined up to take it's place just leaves the guys in the ground in the lurch. It is an impossible situation.
No. In a modern environment the A-10 will simply get shot out of the sky anywhere around the FEBA. All you'll be doing is sending some men to die bravely and pointlessly.

We have Gen 4 aircraft to do CAS and the F-35.

I'd pick an F-16 over an A-10 any day. I'd rather my pilot came back alive.

You're missing a point here, which I tried to make with the F-16/B-17 comparison. Fewer doesn't mean less capability. It can mean more if the fewer are exponentially more capable. That's the difference.

F-35 isn't just deep strike. It's CAS as well.

Sorry, but there's absolutely nothing to say that a dozen A-10s are more effective than two F-35s.
 
No. In a modern environment the A-10 will simply get shot out of the sky anywhere around the FEBA. All you'll be doing is sending some men to die bravely and pointlessly.

We have Gen 4 aircraft to do CAS and the F-35.

I'd pick an F-16 over an A-10 any day. I'd rather my pilot came back alive.

You're missing a point here, which I tried to make with the F-16/B-17 comparison. Fewer doesn't mean less capability. It can mean more if the fewer are exponentially more capable. That's the difference.

F-35 isn't just deep strike. It's CAS as well.

Sorry, but there's absolutely nothing to say that a dozen A-10s are more effective than two F-35s.
My point though is that CAS becomes less of a priority for the boys in blue when they have fewer assets to use. The F-35 can do CAS, but strike and counter air will be the zoomies preferred use for the air frame. The A-10 is kept around because it will only be used to support the Army, and thus CAS will always be available. Just a lower tech platform.
 
CAS is not an option in a peer or near-peer battle.
 
How many airframes do you have? Having nice kit is wonderful, but you also need numbers. If your Typhoons are devoted to counter air, they won’t be playing the CAS roll now will they? What will you do when the Ivan’s start to win the war of attrition, as you don’t have many aircraft to use.

The A-10’s will take losses, that you are correct. But they will be apart of a large coordinated battle. They will receive support, but they will still be expected to fly and deliver. One is not always going to have the luxury of trying to limit a particular airframe due to the risk of losses.

Your country is not preparing for near peer warfare with the Russians.
Why are you here? I mean, every thread I have seen you on, all you have done is start a dig measuring competition and general display of US exceptionalism.

It's very dull.
 
Then how do you propose the land forces are going to stop an opposing force whilst outnumbered and on the defensive?
massive amounts of artillery.

Failing that, they're going to likely die.
 
Then they'll probably die.
 
massive amounts of artillery.

Failing that, they're going to likely die.
So, dying pointlessly while marching up and down or riding horses is the order of the day?

" In a statement accompanying the release of the report RUSI highlighted the scale of the capability shortage problem facing the British.
The cornerstone of the British military's entire fires capability runs to only two regiments of 24 aging AS90 155-mm, 39-calibre, self-propelled howitzers.

Its 16 Air Assault Brigade and 3 Commando Brigade can each field just two batteries of six 105-mm light guns.

And the UK’s Multiple Launch Rocket System is issued with a GPS-guided rocket with a unitary warhead, which is inaccurate in the face of extensive Russian GPS jamming, is unable to course-correct and so cannot reliably engage dynamic targets, and has 85 km range, as compared with 120 km for Russian systems.

By contrast a Russian motor-rifle brigade alone fields an organic fires compliment of 81 artillery pieces, ranging from 152-mm and 203-mm self-propelled howitzers to 300-mm, multiple-launch rocket systems, the RUSI study said.

As a minimum, analysts argue, a credible British fires capability would need to include:
a battery of antitank guided missiles per battle group;
a battery of self propelled 120-mm mortars per battle group;
at least 72 155-mm, 52-calibre self-propelled howitzers with anti-armor, area-effect munitions;
and a regiment of multiple-launch rocket systems with a compliment of anti-armor, area-effect munitions, plus long-range precision fire "

 
Indeed.

And a pig-headed unwillingness to understand that buying lots and cheap might be the way to cope.
 
Indeed.

And a pig-headed unwillingness to understand that buying lots and cheap might be the way to cope.
In fairness there are plenty more useless 105s and a whole Regiment of MLRS
 

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