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  1. #51
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    To put some figures and thus perspective.

    Before Covid a new A321 costs around $46m each, a 10yr old one was down at $18m. Now that will have dropped in the past few weeks and is now likely to be even lower as the market value will now be based upon how much it is worth in parts. As a grey civilian aircraft would be better with a large cargo door on the main deck then a P2F like that offered by EFW could be done for around $6m per aircraft. Thus a multi-role grey A321 would cost around $24m (€22m). For that you would get something that could transport pallets and containers, could be quick changed for troop transport (200-200 troops) or even as medevac. On the minus side would be; that it needs a paved runway and dedicated GSE to load and unload.

    The flyaway cost for a C-130J for the USAF is currently $95m (system cost is $115m per aircraft) the cost of a A400M is around double that. The KC-390 comes in at around $61m based upon the order from FAB. So what do you get for the extra money, well it is flexibility, rough field landing, no need for GSE for loading and unloading, ability to take larger sized loads and a avionics and defensive suite tailored to military transport.

    Just looking at the cost of the aircraft on their own; 4x C-390's + 2x A320P2F(M) would be less that 5x C-130J's. That would be one major upgrade in terms of airlift capacity!
    Last edited by EUFighter; 15th May 2020 at 11:11.

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  3. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by apc View Post
    Surely if you are rotating 352 troops 2/3 times a year it makes sense to charter civilian aircraft even if you have military transport. I can imagine travelling those sort of distances is more comfortable on airliners . Most regular long distance Troop transfers these days are done on Airliners either chartered or operated by the military. And besides the "emergency" airdrop or supply of an extra MOWAG do we need a C130J type aircraft. As Anzac proposed an A321 would be far more usable
    you confuse two different issues - yes, for regular trooping flights you'd just use any commercial contractor. using a C-130 or whatever to move people from one working international airport to another is not just uncomfortable, its a complete waste of money/fatigue life, and opportunity. no one flies to the Falklands in a C-17...

    however, the problem is some are holding on to use and not need. an A320 would get a great deal of use, it could do all the troop rotations, do the MATS task, a bit of air ambulance, civilian repatriations - but its nothing you can't hire on an as-and-when basis. the tactical, ramp-at-the-back airlifter would get less use, but it fulfills a need that no A320 ever could.

    soldiers use chairs far more than they use rifles, but sitting on chairs isn't why soldiers exist...
    Last edited by ropebag; 15th May 2020 at 11:24.

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  5. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by apc View Post
    As Anzac proposed an A321 would be far more usable
    I'm not so sure. A C130 can comfortbably fly into an unpaved strip or an international airport. An A320 can comfortably fly into an interantional airport. One capability covers all possibilities. The other is a luxury. In a straight choice, there is no point in having the luxury at the expense of the comprehensive.

    However, either would be an improvement on the current situation.

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  7. #54
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    Are the A380 awaiting scrapping still being stored at Knock? Just sayin....
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  9. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by na grohmiti View Post
    Are the A380 awaiting scrapping still being stored at Knock? Just sayin....
    Is officially listed as stored but given that it arrived a few weeks before the lock-down I would suspect that high value rotatable parts will have been removed.

  10. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by EUFighter View Post
    To put some figures and thus perspective.

    Before Covid a new A321 costs around $46m each, a 10yr old one was down at $18m. Now that will have dropped in the past few weeks and is now likely to be even lower as the market value will now be based upon how much it is worth in parts. As a grey civilian aircraft would be better with a large cargo door on the main deck then a P2F like that offered by EFW could be done for around $6m per aircraft. Thus a multi-role grey A321 would cost around $24m (€22m). For that you would get something that could transport pallets and containers, could be quick changed for troop transport (200-200 troops) or even as medevac. On the minus side would be; that it needs a paved runway and dedicated GSE to load and unload.

    The flyaway cost for a C-130J for the USAF is currently $95m (system cost is $115m per aircraft) the cost of a A400M is around double that. The KC-390 comes in at around $61m based upon the order from FAB. So what do you get for the extra money, well it is flexibility, rough field landing, no need for GSE for loading and unloading, ability to take larger sized loads and a avionics and defensive suite tailored to military transport.

    Just looking at the cost of the aircraft on their own; 4x C-390's + 2x A320P2F(M) would be less that 5x C-130J's. That would be one major upgrade in terms of airlift capacity!
    Jesus 4 x 390s and 2 A320s sure you might buy a couple of Tanker conversion kits for the squadron of Grippens

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  12. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by apc View Post
    Jesus 4 x 390s and 2 A320s sure you might buy a couple of Tanker conversion kits for the squadron of Grippens
    You mean the squadrons of Grippens!
    KC390 do come with tanker kit options.

  13. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by EUFighter View Post
    You mean the squadrons of Grippens!
    KC390 do come with tanker kit options.
    Buy it all! Joe Public is too preocciupied with Maccy Dee's reopening, Gembots antics, Nudity on RTE TV and Johnny versus Dickie to pay any heed to military spending. Ireland stopped watching the news around Easter Sunday. Most of them think the Air Corps only have one plane/helicopter anyway.
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  15. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by na grohmiti View Post
    Buy it all! Joe Public is too preocciupied with Maccy Dee's reopening, Gembots antics, Nudity on RTE TV and Johnny versus Dickie to pay any heed to military spending. Ireland stopped watching the news around Easter Sunday. Most of them think the Air Corps only have one plane/helicopter anyway.
    We need them now to perform fire fighting duty at the Curragh, so best get the fire fighting kit while we are at it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jetjock View Post
    I'm not so sure. A C130 can comfortbably fly into an unpaved strip or an international airport. An A320 can comfortably fly into an interantional airport. One capability covers all possibilities. The other is a luxury. In a straight choice, there is no point in having the luxury at the expense of the comprehensive.

    However, either would be an improvement on the current situation.
    An A320 can fly into a regional sized airport with a tarmac runway (In fact the Australian Antarctic Division use an A319 to fly supplies into Antarctica onto an ice runway).

    The reality is an Irish contingent or other smaller national component of a larger UN operation particularly in UNSC ChpVII Peace Enforcement scenarios, would be staging through an air facility 'hub' with a tarmac runway that is likely to have ground support facilities to use in-situ or provided by one of the bigger players in the operation. IIRC even the ARW staged through RAAF Darwin on to the forward base established at Dili Airport, then Suai. RNZAF flew resupply missions into theatre using both C-130 and B727 into Dili. That is typical of the home to hub aspect of the Strategic Air Mobility chain. The luxury is being able to afford the last mile. The necessity is the getting you there and back part as it is not the last mile that is the first problem it is those first 1000+ miles in terms of capability development.

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  18. #61
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    An A320 needs about 250m runway than an A319 and an A321 needs 1000m more than a A319, all at MTOW. (ISA @ SL)

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  20. #62
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    Quote Originally Posted by EUFighter View Post
    To put some figures and thus perspective.

    Before Covid a new A321 costs around $46m each, a 10yr old one was down at $18m. Now that will have dropped in the past few weeks and is now likely to be even lower as the market value will now be based upon how much it is worth in parts. As a grey civilian aircraft would be better with a large cargo door on the main deck then a P2F like that offered by EFW could be done for around $6m per aircraft. Thus a multi-role grey A321 would cost around $24m (€22m). For that you would get something that could transport pallets and containers, could be quick changed for troop transport (200-200 troops) or even as medevac. On the minus side would be; that it needs a paved runway and dedicated GSE to load and unload.
    Certainly better than the current Lear and offers much more future capability than an intra theatre lifter like a CASA.

    Quote Originally Posted by EUFighter View Post
    The flyaway cost for a C-130J for the USAF is currently $95m (system cost is $115m per aircraft) the cost of a A400M is around double that. The KC-390 comes in at around $61m based upon the order from FAB. So what do you get for the extra money, well it is flexibility, rough field landing, no need for GSE for loading and unloading, ability to take larger sized loads and a avionics and defensive suite tailored to military transport.
    Flyaway probably not the best calculation to use. The Portugal is paying Eur 827m for its package. France paid US$650m for four their fleet of four. The MDE (main defence equipment) price was $355m which shows how much it costs to make a flyaway actually fly when PGSE, Training systems, Publications/Technical Data, Contractor Support, spare engines and necessary military equipment like RWR, ECM, secure comms ect are factored in.

    Quote Originally Posted by EUFighter View Post
    Just looking at the cost of the aircraft on their own; 4x C-390's + 2x A320P2F(M) would be less that 5x C-130J's. That would be one major upgrade in terms of airlift capacity!
    It would be cheaper and would generate 4200 flight hours p.a in typical military use over 3000 hours which a fleet of five C-130J would normally consume. The question would be - is that too much utility or not?

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  22. #63
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anzac View Post
    It would be cheaper and would generate 4200 flight hours p.a in typical military use over 3000 hours which a fleet of five C-130J would normally consume. The question would be - is that too much utility or not?
    Good question. It would be interesting to have some insight as to the tasking of the RNZAF C-130's and B757 over a year.
    If I am not mistaken (open to better info) the Irish Army is not only larger but has more deployments and troops deployed at present. This might not have been the case at the height of the missions in Iraq and Afghanistan. But having an idea of how the RNZAF sized their fleet could help answer the question.

  23. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by EUFighter View Post
    Good question. It would be interesting to have some insight as to the tasking of the RNZAF C-130's and B757 over a year.
    If I am not mistaken (open to better info) the Irish Army is not only larger but has more deployments and troops deployed at present. This might not have been the case at the height of the missions in Iraq and Afghanistan. But having an idea of how the RNZAF sized their fleet could help answer the question.
    Also worth considering the remoteness of NZ, at least 1200nm from the next large land mass means your fleet make up has to be different. Also the country is more expansive than our little Island.
    A 757 size aircraft is probably the minimum size and range required given that fact.

    Our situation is different and the fleet make up should reflect the uniqueness of our geographical location.

    But I think, very importantly, given that this may be the once in generation chance to get some meaningful airlift capability into the DF.

    It has to be a Militarily capable aircraft, if in the future the Ramped aircraft is being used to such a degree that a trooping type aircraft is needed and requirement is funded then you look at the QC 320/737 class of aircraft.

    The reality in an Irish context is, if funding were to become available it would be a for an Aircraft that would need to serve for 30 years before a replacement would be considered.

    A 320/737 p2F is a hugely capable aircraft and in a DF context a couple of giant leaps forward, but it does not get past the requirement for ground handling equipment. It cannot lift outsize items into an under developed airport and load/unloaded unaided. Nor does it give any kind of Air Drop ability.

    These two capabilities in a Military and importantly Humanitarian Aid mission are essential.

    220 Million Euro to count fishing boats would have bought a lot of real airlift capability.

    Again the AC is hamstrung by the DOD and this idea that aircraft can only be replaced...

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  25. #65
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    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie252 View Post
    Also worth considering the remoteness of NZ, at least 1200nm from the next large land mass means your fleet make up has to be different. Also the country is more expansive than our little Island.
    A 757 size aircraft is probably the minimum size and range required given that fact.

    Our situation is different and the fleet make up should reflect the uniqueness of our geographical location.
    Remember you are flying places away from home and not sailing or driving. The Don to both Bamako, Mali or Beirut, Lebanon is just shy of 4000kms, There are other places in the Middle East and Africa were you have served or likely to serve in the future that are even further. Pristina, Kosavo is circa 2400kms and that is one of the more closer places the Irish Defence Force has operated. So not much difference in distance to the places the RNZAF Boeings have flown to over the last 40 years in the Pacific and SE Asia. Unless you are expecting a spike in ChpVII events in the Cotswolds, Brussels or St Tropez.

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie252 View Post
    But I think, very importantly, given that this may be the once in generation chance to get some meaningful airlift capability into the DF.

    It has to be a Militarily capable aircraft, if in the future the Ramped aircraft is being used to such a degree that a trooping type aircraft is needed and requirement is funded then you look at the QC 320/737 class of aircraft.

    The reality in an Irish context is, if funding were to become available it would be a for an Aircraft that would need to serve for 30 years before a replacement would be considered.
    I agree with all of that being possibly a once in a generation opportunity and a long term investment in capability, but disagree on the suggestion that you get the tactical air mobility asset first. Because from the sound of it - you think it will be easy to buy and operate a medium-large tactical transport that can go into even a low-medium intensity threat environment. You will need to buy a Multi-engine Air Crew Training platform like KA200's to train and perfect the necessary tactical flight profiles which are just as rigorous as strike roles, build leadership and crews on your KC-390 or C-130J which will take time. By all means do all that eventually, but if you 1) want to build your capability development in a coherent manner, 2) leverage on the whole of government utility of a P2F type aircraft 3) make a real contribution to Defence Force outputs and 4) possess wider mission air mobility value a hell of of lot sooner and easier get your P2F asset in place first (Again this mantra - from Home to Hub - your tactical load the strategic distance), and concurrently start the capability development so that one day you will be able to fly the last mile spoke onto an unprepared strip into a Chp VII environment or paradrop the ARW from the back of a Herc at low level on a moonless night into a remote mountain valley in North Africa.

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie252 View Post
    A 320/737 p2F is a hugely capable aircraft and in a DF context a couple of giant leaps forward, but it does not get past the requirement for ground handling equipment.
    Ireland will not be the lead contingent other than say a ARW troop attached to a larger formation going in first. When you fly your first infantry company into the theatre staging point with your B737/A320-321 et al you WILL have GHE waiting for you. If you think that operating a A320/B737 in a strategic role is a couple of giant leaps you will be in for a big surprise for what it takes to train and operate a C-130J.

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie252 View Post
    It cannot lift outsize items into an under developed airport and load/unloaded unaided.
    These are capability calling for at least a A400M or C-2, because C-130's and KC-390's cannot do the outsize load part. Leave outsize loads via air mobility to the C-17 or A400M operators and take it in by MRV, which the big boys do anyway as well.

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie252 View Post
    Nor does it give any kind of Air Drop ability. These two capabilities in a Military and importantly Humanitarian Aid mission are essential.
    Yes your P2F cannot do the Air Drop but the P2F assets fly up the real weight of the HADR missions with many more 463L's onboard.

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie252 View Post
    220 Million Euro to count fishing boats would have bought a lot of real airlift capability.
    No it would not buy a lot of real airlift capability if you are thinking a proper military medium tactical air mobility asset that would be future proofed for the next 40 years. 220 million would buy just 1 and a half KC-390's or C-130J-30. To give you an idea of the cost of operating five RNZAF C-130's per annum (what is called Output 13.2 on our budget line) is Eur80m or NZ$150m each and every year and believe me we pinch pennies.

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie252 View Post
    Again the AC is hamstrung by the DOD and this idea that aircraft can only be replaced...
    So that is why I have hammered home the point knowing the miserliness of your DoD at present, that it is all very well and good to want this and that, do this and that, the reality check is that go for runs on the board to get something achievable and very useful now, develop the air capability, and work towards the gung-ho heroic stuff later - unless through a miracle they decide to though Eur500m at the IAC.

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  27. #66
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    Quote Originally Posted by EUFighter View Post
    Good question. It would be interesting to have some insight as to the tasking of the RNZAF C-130's and B757 over a year.
    If I am not mistaken (open to better info) the Irish Army is not only larger but has more deployments and troops deployed at present. This might not have been the case at the height of the missions in Iraq and Afghanistan. But having an idea of how the RNZAF sized their fleet could help answer the question.
    Here goes. The C-130'Hs generate 2400-2500 annual hours and the B757's around 1400-1500 annual hours.

    Overall the NZDF employs 14900 of which their are 6750 with Army Reserve (1800) and Regular Force (4950), however there are a around 1250 full-time contractors or civilians who are direct supports to the NZ Army - many of them ex uniform following the civilianisation process (There are 3000 civilians / contractors within the NZDF). If you are dressed in Green you can be deployed - if white collar/grey collar you stay home - your civvy street.

    The C-130's conduct readiness training exercises like PITCH BLACK, BULLSEYE and GREEN FLAG to qualify crews in Airborne Operations plus participate in BLACK WING and NOCTURNAL REACH to reinforced airborne operational skills with other services overseas. Operation TEAL supported rotation and sustainment of NZDF deployed forces in the Middle East mostly in Iraq at Taji who are coming home. Then as part of DEEP FREEZE C-130H and B757-2K2 aircraft fly around 10-12 annual airlift missions to Antarctica and provide standby medical evacuation support pre-positioned in Christchurch as a backup to the primary US-led evacuation option. They also do MAOT (Multi-Agency Operational Taskings) in support of the Government like a medevac, repatriation of nationals, Civil Defence, logistic support to other departments ect. They also support the Army in getting to their annual major joint service level exercises overseas such as TALISMAN SABRE or locally SOUTHERN KATIPO as well as deploying the NZSAS Regiment personnel who are frequent flyers for Exercises and the like. Also there are the HADR runs into the Pacific as they have an annual Hurricane season and other events, plus SASO events come up from time to time. Lastly, they fly the PM and Foreign Minister who is the Deputy PM, pretty much only those two bigwigs go VIP on the B757 (probably just 200 hours p.a max). Even the Defence Minister flies Air NZ to overseas meetings unless the FM/DPM is going too. The thing when there is not much in the way of formal deployments 40Sqd are busy with exercises.
    Last edited by Anzac; 16th May 2020 at 17:34.

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    I think the point is being missed. Buying a White Aircraft, regardless of paint job runs the reel danger of being seen as a New Govt Jet, and as a result being Politically unpalatable.

    This is the reality of the Irish Situation.

    The situation in NZ is different and clearly defence policy and expenditure is further up the list or priorities.

    The 220 million Euro's on the Marpat aircraft may be the only real investment in the AC for the remainder of the decade, that is the reality.

    You have to be aware that the DOD, and by default the Minister, refer to the Investments in the DF, and mention in the same breath the Helicopters, PC-9's and Mowags that were delivered more than 15 years ago.

    This is the reality of Irish Defence policy and the expenditure that follows it.

    You can hammer home your point about the 320 type aircraft and you have many valid points, but the decision, if it happens, will not be based on those types of rational arguments.

    In my view the AC will be lucky if as a result of the current situation a decision is made to purchase a third GP C-295.

    From a wider DF and for the future of the AC I hope that a larger military transport aircraft is in the mix.

    I am of the view that if a 320 type aircraft is mentioned the DOD would be able to shoot it down early on cost grounds because they can charter one at short notice!

    A C-130 class aircraft brings unique capabilities and generates a different conversation in the DOD.

    The realities and costs of operating any of these aircraft are for AC management to determine and plan for.
    In my view its not such a huge step from a CN-235 to either a 320 or C-130 class aircraft from a Purely flying and maintaining point of view. But the costs are significantly increased and given the current expenditure on the AC on an annual basis is about 18 million to run the entire operation, it is clear either is a huge ask from an annual budgeting point of view.

    Finally, I actually never envisage AC aircraft flying high end military combat type operations anywhere, this is not realistic given defence policy and its not a realistic role given the budgets that are currently available and even if the budget were to double, would still not support such a capability.

    Ireland is non-aligned and has a Neutral stance that would preclude being involved in expeditionary types of operations.

    Dream land is the ability to deliver a sizable load into austere locations for humanitarian purposes and to have the capability to support DF deployments in similar circumstances.

    Total dreamland is those deployments would include our own rotary wing supporting our troops.

    There is a Fundamental difference between where NZ defence policy stands and Ireland's.
    Last edited by Charlie252; 16th May 2020 at 18:02.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie252 View Post
    I think the point is being missed. Buying a White Aircraft, regardless of paint job runs the reel danger of being seen as a New Govt Jet, and as a result being Politically unpalatable.

    This is the reality of the Irish Situation.
    Irish are an educated, intelligent people, and I say that because I am one of the 20% of Kiwi's who have Irish heritage and have visited there 4 over times over the last 15 years, so yes a pro Ireland bias is locked. If things are explained to the public about what the capability is for, they will get it. Yes there will be the Latte drinkers in the media and inner city arty farty types in Dublin who may dominate and perpetuate the anti-defence line, but the majority of pragmatic Irish people, the "Quiet Irish" as Australian PM Scott Morrison would call them wont feel that way. You have the public perception existing only because politicians trip off to Brussels, Geneva ect using small Executive jets like billionaires do. I am sure that they will support and take pride in the capability that it can deliver from Ireland on the global stage, as normal pragmatic Kiwi's and Aussies do. HADR flights to the Caribbean or Africa, ability to repatriate hundreds of Irish nationals from strife torn or disaster effected countries under urgency, conduct peacekeeping air support not just for Ireland but for even less resourced players, what Joseph Nye calls the soft power of the nation state, boosting the countries international reputation, waving its flag, developing relationships that can later translate in trade opportunities for Irish exporters, and having more influence in a diplomatic sense all from that. Frankly the ultimate absurdity is that an Irish rock band like U2 can lease a Boeing 757-200 for a 2 year global tour, singing songs about peace and poverty, 3rd world issues and famines, but their very government, is somehow precluded or so the myth goes, from even leasing the same type of aircraft to actually do something about those very issues.

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie252 View Post
    In my view the AC will be lucky if as a result of the current situation a decision is made to purchase a third GP C-295.

    I am of the view that if a 320 type aircraft is mentioned the DOD would be able to shoot it down early on cost grounds because they can charter one at short notice!
    Firstly charter, it is hit and miss, fewer kosher operators want to go into areas with more than benign risk these days. They'd rather pick up the slack from DHL and FedEx in a business, insurance and employee H&S sense with far less paperwork. Why the RNZAF bought P2F lifters was that we were caught short a number of times in the past a long way from home and unreliable operators - lesson learnt. We bought a couple of 15 year old B727-200's in the early 1980's and another as a parts stripper. They were perfectly fine for 20 years, they were cheap - Air NZ helped support them until the capacity was developed in house. Even then we needed charter capacity for East Timor at the height and that operator had to get cleared by the ADF's General Cosgrove the mission commander. Right now in this Covid 19 world you can pick up a good condition 15 year old B738 or A320 for a third of what you will pay for a new build C-295W. Even pre CV-19 you could have a converted and C check overhauled P2F/C 738 with secure milcoms installed and for around USD $20m that will deliver for the next 15 years. Much cheaper than a C-295W new build and in the context of replacing the Lear in the same ballpark.

    Of course do it properly and stump up 300m euro for a couple of KC-390's and be able to do everything you will ever need with respect to air mobility for the next 40 years - in the scheme of things with the amount of money being borrowed by Governments at the moment Eur300m is looking like a rounding error for an economy a hundred times larger than that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie252 View Post
    But the costs are significantly increased and given the current expenditure on the AC on an annual basis is about 18 million to run the entire operation, it is clear either is a huge ask from an annual budgeting point of view.

    There is a Fundamental difference between where NZ defence policy stands and Ireland's.
    Yeah we now spend the EU average of about 1.3% of GDP. Just a few years ago we were spending just 0.85% and Ireland was spending a similar amount. Other than working with other like minded liberal democracies a little more closely, the same fundamental policy goals are there with respect to a UN focused response and trying to be a 'White Hat' in the world where more 'Black Hats' and 'Black Swan events' are emerging.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Anzac View Post
    Here goes. The C-130'Hs generate 2400-2500 annual hours and the B757's around 1400-1500 annual hours.
    Thanks for that, interesting that the annual hours for the grey civilian A/C are around 50% more than the green military even if there is a little VVIP thrown in.

    Looking at our troop deployments, we currently have MINURSO, MONUSCO, EUTM (Mali), EULEX (KFOR), UNTSO, UNIFIL and UNDOF. Then there is the EUBG participation and the odd live fire of RBS70's in Sweden. We may not have a hurricane (typhoon) season but there is regular HADR events, from forest fire through to earthquakes and as we say with the NS mission in the Med such things come over very well with Joe public. Also the region to the south and east of the EU is not the most stable often leading to man made disasters. So once the relevant training hours are added it should be enough to justify a similar if slightly smaller mixed fleet.

    As for medevac we currently abuse the Casa but the new PC-12 should relive that problem.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Anzac View Post
    No it would not buy a lot of real airlift capability if you are thinking a proper military medium tactical air mobility asset that would be future proofed for the next 40 years. 220 million would buy just 1 and a half KC-390's or C-130J-30. To give you an idea of the cost of operating five RNZAF C-130's per annum (what is called Output 13.2 on our budget line) is Eur80m or NZ$150m each and every year and believe me we pinch pennies.
    A little bit more than what the USAF estimate for their C130Js but same ballpark, interestingly the USAF give the annual cost of operating a C17 at around 20% less than a C130. Also comparing an A321 to a B757 the difference per hours can be as much as 50% (comparing American Airlines who operate both). It will be interesting to see what costs the Embraer will achieve.

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    All very laudable, but doesn't get past the fact that you aren't comparing apples.

    NZ defence budget is 2.4 Billion, Ireland's is 1 Billion

    The NZ defence minister is on record this week stating his number one priority is getting the C-130J's, we have never heard any Irish defence minister, ever make any statement, even remotely like that.

    So if you accept the current situation, and the reality, that there will not be any appreciable increase in the foreseeable future.

    Then I would contend that if funding were to become available, then there is only one option in terms of increasing Defence Air Mobility for the next 20-30 years.

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    While I would welcome the IAC getting a couple of C130J's or KC390's I can't see it happening at the moment unless maybe I get the new job in Newbridge!

    Bester would be at present something like an A321P2F, a converted A321 with a nice big door on the side and no windows! Paint it the same dark grey that the USAF uses on there transports, have an open day in the Don to show it off, for the show have a few rows pf palletized seats at the back, mid section with some litters and forward pallets, naturally packed with boxes which have big red crosses on them. A lot will be about how the public perceives the aircraft and the last thing it should look like is a business jet for high rollers. The public still remember the planes going to Tripoli, they now see and accept the government sending almost daily an A330 to China for PPE and always welcome when a government learns a lesson from a mistake (oversight).

    Yes there still will be shouting from certain media outlets, the left will cry foul and the Shinners, there will always be something for them to complain about. But that should not stop us from doing something, government only moves when it is pushed on defence.

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    This all also has to be considered in the context of the White paper which outlined the next ten years of defence spending and policy.

    A caretaker government, a public apathy to defence and politicians who are not engaged.

    I think if pushed, and something HAS to be done, then I can see DOD seeing a third C-295 as ticking the box and everybody moves on too more important stuff!!

    Its a shame but given the historically low DF budget it would take years of huge capital expenditure to move Irelands defence capability to even a fraction of comparable nations.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie252 View Post
    All very laudable, but doesn't get past the fact that you aren't comparing apples.

    So if you accept the current situation, and the reality, that there will not be any appreciable increase in the foreseeable future.

    Then I would contend that if funding were to become available, then there is only one option in terms of increasing Defence Air Mobility for the next 20-30 years.
    It is not a comparison Charlie. It was a reference for capability needs based on what a defence force of a similar size and generic operational outlook does albeit one with a larger budget at present is doing - which was not the case until a few years ago. Looking at the IDF requirements and air mobility capability gap, the wider whole of Govt MAOT tasking and DF mission deployment needs along with the likely to be very tight budget allocation over the next period which I accept is likely (though disappointed it wont be more), and with Leo's statement in the past week that air mobility is being looked into, added to my familiarity with the subject, I gave my view that there is just one plausible option under the circumstances.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Anzac View Post
    It is not a comparison Charlie. It was a reference for capability needs based on what a defence force of a similar size and generic operational outlook does albeit one with a larger budget at present is doing - which was not the case until a few years ago. Looking at the IDF requirements and air mobility capability gap, the wider whole of Govt MAOT tasking and DF mission deployment needs along with the likely to be very tight budget allocation over the next period which I accept is likely (though disappointed it wont be more), and with Leo's statement in the past week that air mobility is being looked into, added to my familiarity with the subject, I gave my view that there is just one plausible option under the circumstances.
    I take your point but your view is thru the lense of NZ defence policy and expenditure.

    Have a look at the last decade in defence expenditure for both countries.

    The other branches of the DF have a significant shoping list, and would also be making their case if funding were to be available.

    I don't think the funding has yet been secured for the NS blue/green vessel.

    In my view the 321 p2f is a super aircraft but is unpalatable in an Irish Context. I also haven't seen a QC type conversion for it, but that's another conversation.

    I think at a huge stretch a C-130 might be possible.

    As it stands the next decade of AC capital expenditure is the CN-235 replacement which covers the next 3-4 years, the LR-45 is scheduled for replacement in 2024, that date will shift to the end of the decade most likely.

    And Finally the PC-9 replacement is due 2025, however we know that those aircraft will still be viable and fit for purpose so that will also shift to the end of the decade.

    In the context of the White Paper the C-295 ticks the box of enhanced transport capability, the PC-12 ticks many box's. And the requirement to look into Air Defence capability will be tied to the PC-9 replacement and as I have already said that's ten years away.

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