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Jets/Light Fighters

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  • Anyway, Andy, I'm not sure where anyone compared ireland to a middle east dust bowl so could you point this out

    Don't believe me? Have a look at the experiences of the UAE or Saudi Airforces with their western gear
    ForkTailedDevil, your work collegues are irrelevant (as was pointed out to me!)

    .Also I don't think we want every Tom Dick and Harry signing up to the IAC if they got fighters.
    Please go and re-read the context....

    The DF is not considered the prime career it was in the past,and the Dept have had difficulties filling the vacancies.
    I noted that IF we EVER purchased fighters a lot of people would try to join!


    • Andy, the comparison with the 'dust bowl'countries had a lot more to do with the fact that they have spent huge amounts of money on Western Gear in the past and found that they couldn't support it and keep it operational without massive support. Hence the use of foreign contractors to keep their equipment operational. The point stands, it would be a long term project to build the capability to operate modern fast jets.

      The Finns have been operating fast jets for many, many years and thus already had a significant core of technical and operational experience. They then spent a very large amount of money training technicians and pilots on the F/A-18, and only now are they even exploring its A-G potential.

      FTDs list of priorities for the AC are spot on, although I'd add some form of deployable CAS/Fire Support before interceptors. Even an attack helicopter squadron would be an improvement.*

      *with the obvious disclaimer that this is all fantasy, and that the AC will probably never operate aircraft with a combat capability.


      • Here, im not saying we need jets 2moro, but i am pointing out that some of those dust bowl countries will never probably be able to operate modern jets.

        The Finns have been operating fast jets for many, many years
        With a bunch of conscripts I might add.... and the reserve soldiers I was talking to werent to impressed with the wages they were on or the level of training they recieved:O

        Jets for this country are down the list of priorities, we can ask the UK and US in the mean time. However my point was that if the proper funding was made available in the morning, we could have everything in place in 2 years max.

        What is clear is that the PC-9's are extremely limited and admitted so by the Minister of Defence.


        • While I am afraid that Aidan may be right in his statement that the IAC might never operate combat capable aircrafts, I hope that he is wrong............
          Andy, I do think that ,even if we imported experts from abroad, including actual air crews, that 2 years would be optomistic to say the least.
          I, more or less agree with FTD's priority order.
          The PC-9s are extreamly limited, espically by being bought in such a tiny number, I still say one of the main problems with the IAC is the manner in which aircrafts are bought.
          But whether we like it, or not, this debate, no matter how foolish, will go on...............
          "We will hold out until our last bullet is spent. Could do with some whiskey"
          Radio transmission, siege of Jadotville DR Congo. September 1961.
          Illegitimi non carborundum


          • never underestimate the power of money !:D


            • Hello all, long time lurker, first time poster.

              Anyway, just a few opinions:

              Firstly I dont understand why it even needs saying that the PC-9's are limited, they are training aircraft. Simple as that. Not even the minister for defence has even attempted to disguise that fact. Taking that as a given, they are a tremendous step forward in terms of pilot training for the Air Corps. Whether jets had been bought instead, the PC-9's were always going to be needed.

              With regards to this topic, there seems to be a catch 22 situation. Whether the Air Corps goes for a cheaper option, i.e. an aircraft in the Hawk or L-159 catagory, which offer a limited advantage at a higher operating cost over the PC-9.

              Or whether the quantum leap is taken and something in the class of the Saab Gripen is bought. Much higher cost but much greater capability.

              I have a question.. and I recognise I'm not bringing this topic any further but, what the hell, tolerate me;

              does any other airforce in the world operate Fighter aircraft without using the Turboprop->LIFT->Fighter system.

              i.e. is it possible, or even desirable to have fighters without something like the Hawk in between? Yes some two seater variants of the fighters could be bought for training but would that be viable economically?


              • That's progress.
                A sort of an answer. No I don't think so, all the major airforces seem to go from a basic trainer to an advanced trainer then on to their FJ.
                In my opinion the PC-9 is limited because of the number that they have purchased, I think they should have got more then 8, because despite what the minister has said, they will be used for this so-called light strike, which is one of those wonderfully meaningless discriptions of something, the kindest translation I can put on it is, ground strike training, [they appear to have limited the aircrafts stores carrying capacity to a load well below worthwhile for actual use]
                They will also be used if we can belive our media, for enforceing no fly zones, :D :D :D They should be quite effective against armed microlites.
                Finally some clown will no doubt attempt to reform the display team, such things, like govenment transport, are possable when you have the defence resources of someone like the UK, if not then they are a drain on equipment which may have other far more important uses.
                The plus side of the story is that the PC-9m replaces more then one aircraft type, they effectively replace the Marchettie basic trainer, and they also replace the training function of the Fouga advanced jet trainer.
                But the Fougas, while otherwise a useless waste of taxpayers money, did give the dangerous illusion of defence, nothing more, which strangely enough, while in many ways being a superior aircraft, the PC-9 will never do.
                Because thats's how people think, jets= air power, aeroplanes with twirley things on the front=quaint and quite silly.
                I do not belive that the L-159 or the Hawk offer any advantage over the PC-9 in any role to justify their purchase, but I think one of the transonic trainer/light fighters such as the F/A/T-50 are where the IAC should be heading when the busness of maritime patrol , helicopters for army air-mobility and tactical transport have been resolved.
                Such an arcraft, can offer all that is forseeably required to secure the airspace of this country from all but the most determined conventional attackers, should the world ever sink back to the depths of the 1940's again.
                Obviously aircrafts such as the Gripen, F-16, or F-18 would help provide a spotters paradise, but unless we were to become a nation of crusaders, bestowing the blessing of enforced peace upon the worlds warring factions, I really cannot see a suitation where such overpriced hardware would prove necessary.
                Feck, where is that fireproof gear? :D
                "We will hold out until our last bullet is spent. Could do with some whiskey"
                Radio transmission, siege of Jadotville DR Congo. September 1961.
                Illegitimi non carborundum


                • Turkey I suppose I should don similar gear seeing as I agree with you

                  The LIFT type of aircraft, particularly the Mako and T/A-50 would seem to make perfect sense.

                  But what do I know...

                  New helicopters please Mr. Smith


                  • Tell gee dubya that Ireland has no aircraft and would probably side with bin laden and you will have all the F-15s and F-16s and F-18s you want for nix.


                    • Another article on the JSF:

                      BBC Article
                      "The dolphins were monkeys that didn't like the land, walked back to the water, went back from the sand."


                      • New build GR9 Harrier as strike and reconaisance (as opposed to the GR7s that have been upgraded to GR9 staus) and those quite new Sea Harriers for A2A plus new ones makes far more sense for the British carriers.They might not have stealth or supersonic speed but they work, and work very well.
                        Si vis pacem para bellum


                        • Swiss Hawks for sale

                          Air Forces Monthly this month features Swiss Air Force and reports that it has put up for sale 18 Hawk trainers delivered 1987-90. Since the Swiss cut their air force from 300-odd fighters in the 1980s to the 70-odd today, they no longer have need for such a training capacity. According to AFM, all the Hawks have low hours, between 650 and 1,300, are weel-maintained and in storage, ready for sale. They are all wired to car Sidewinders and 30mm Aden cannon pod for secondary air defence and light attack. Only the United Arab Emirates have expressed any interest to date. Could this be cheap way of giving the Air Corps a jet capability for limited air defence and attack duties? What ya think?


                          • Been through this LIFT already thing already.Sadly the answer is no despite them being nice little planes.Light strike-Yes, A2A-no.Not fast enuff (even some of the large passenger aircraft can out-run them)and are restriced to fair weather and WVR attacks.Sadly this is the pretty much the last word on the subject really.Not much more to say about them.Those Hawks have been up for sale for a wee while now aswell.
                            Si vis pacem para bellum


                            • In response to That'sProgress asking

                              "any other airforce in the world operate Fighter aircraft without using the Turboprop->LIFT->Fighter system."

                              well, a few try it.India itself has been missing out on a decent LIFT type for years, which accounts for a high number of crashes despite some very good pilots and excellent airplanes.Thye finally signed a contract for 66 Hawks recently.Many 3rd world countries jump straight to fighters (for reasons of pride), generally inherited from other sources and bring in mercenaries to operate them, or send pilots abroad for teaching or the final option, throw a poorly qualified pilot in and hope for the best.All 3 options have been attempted at one point or another.
                              Si vis pacem para bellum


                              • Thye finally signed a contract for 66 Hawks recently
                                They needed to !! With one of the highest (if not highest) death rate of new pilots in the world. They just took green recruits and threw them straight away into SU-27s:D :D

                                Jets are 'too heavy to take off
                                I am a big fan of the JSF but im starting to have my doubts ... a tad expensive € 51million each