Author Topic: Fixed Wing Gunships  (Read 11496 times)

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Offline Ex-Dragoon

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Fixed Wing Gunships
« on: July 28, 2007, 11:49:48 »
We all love the AC130 and we know a lot of what it can do....what I am wondering is, could aircraft like the C17, C141 or C5 be used in a similiar role?
On the CF front is there enough life in our CP140 airframes to convert them over?
I will leave your flesh on the mountains and fill the valleys with your carcasses. I will water the land with what flows from you, and the river beds shall be filled with your blood. When I snuff you out I will cover the heavens and all the stars will darken. Ezekiel 32:5-7
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Offline Jammer

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Re: Fixed Wing Gunships
« Reply #1 on: July 28, 2007, 12:13:27 »
Sure.... but why would you want a jet A/C as a gunship? Historically, with the exception of the AC-47, F/W gunships have been high wing prop driven machines that can loiter slow and for a good period of time.
The Buffalo might be seen as a viable alternative if Canada were to test it's options.
It's not really whether it can be done, hell if you can make the V-22 fly (kinda :P) you can do anything!
What could possibly go wrong?

Offline 3rd Herd

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Re: Fixed Wing Gunships
« Reply #2 on: July 28, 2007, 14:34:18 »
"Reluctantly, General Curtis E. LeMay, then Air Force Chief of Staff, approved combat testing of the C-47 in Vietnam. "It's not a very good platform and you can't carry the load," he later said. "You don't have the range, staying capacity, or anything else. They're too vulnerable both on the ground and in the air."6 But pessimistic suspicions regarding the side-firing C-47 owed much to the Air Force's emphasis on fast planes and heavy firepower. General Walter C. Sweeney, Jr., then commander of TAC, also feared that the gunship weakened the Air Force's case against the Army's use of helicopters for fire support. Ironically, General Sweeney and TAC were responsible for employing the gunships in combat.7 Although then Vice Chief of Staff General John P. McConnell justified the gunship to General Sweeney specifically in terms of counterinsurgency,8 apprehensions about a massive war in Europe weighed against them. The key was which war seemed more pressing––the one in progress or the one yet to be fought.The Limits of Innovation: Aspects of Air Power in Vietnam
 http://www.airpower.maxwell.af.mil/airchronicles/aureview/1985/jan-feb/mrozek.html

“What,” fumed one irate cavalry officer, “replace the horse with a tank? Why you might as well attempt to replace our railway system by lines of airships.”
—Maj Gen I.B. Holley, USAFR

"Attempting to change the mind set of professional, trained, military leaders can prove to be a daunting challenge. Experience is always one of the most valuable sources of information for use in decision making. However there are often occasions when experience must be measured against creative thinking and innovation."
THE SPECIAL OSPREY: IMPACT ON SPECIAL OPERATIONS DOCTRINE
http://www.au.af.mil/au/awc/awcgate/saas/trask_tj.pdf




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aesop081

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Re: Fixed Wing Gunships
« Reply #3 on: July 28, 2007, 14:58:05 »
On the CF front is there enough life in our CP140 airframes to convert them over?

No, there is not enough

Further more, with the AIMP block 2 upgrades, the number of airframes in TLIR , the YFR reductions and the operations tempo we are under, there are no airframes available for conversion to anything.

Offline Astrodog

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Re: Fixed Wing Gunships
« Reply #4 on: July 28, 2007, 15:15:11 »
Does Canada still plan to replace the coastal patrol duties of the CP-140 with UAVs such as Germany has opted for and move the CP-140s to the arctic sovereignty arena?
Aspiring Zoomie

aesop081

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Re: Fixed Wing Gunships
« Reply #5 on: July 28, 2007, 15:45:47 »
Does Canada still plan to replace the coastal patrol duties of the CP-140 with UAVs such as Germany has opted for and move the CP-140s to the arctic sovereignty arena?

No replacement for the Aurora until 2016

Thats right from Comd 1 cdn Air Div

And there is not intention of relagating us only to arctic patrols......we have taken on alot of other missions in ADDITION to our ASW role, which continues


Offline Ex-Dragoon

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Re: Fixed Wing Gunships
« Reply #6 on: July 29, 2007, 18:57:55 »
No, there is not enough

Further more, with the AIMP block 2 upgrades, the number of airframes in TLIR , the YFR reductions and the operations tempo we are under, there are no airframes available for conversion to anything.

Are they using the Arcturus for anything?
I will leave your flesh on the mountains and fill the valleys with your carcasses. I will water the land with what flows from you, and the river beds shall be filled with your blood. When I snuff you out I will cover the heavens and all the stars will darken. Ezekiel 32:5-7
Tradition- Just because you've always done it that way doesn't mean it's not incredibly stupid
Former RCN Sailor now Retired

aesop081

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Re: Fixed Wing Gunships
« Reply #7 on: July 29, 2007, 19:00:14 »
Are they using the Arcturus for anything?

One is not permanently grounded....used as a training aid for AVN course.  The other 2 are being used for now but will be retired when the Block 2 AIMP cockpit is installed on the Auroras.....theres only 2 Arcturus left and they wont have the same cockpit as the Aurora so they will be retired......

Offline Ex-Dragoon

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Re: Fixed Wing Gunships
« Reply #8 on: July 29, 2007, 19:02:01 »
Gotcha
I will leave your flesh on the mountains and fill the valleys with your carcasses. I will water the land with what flows from you, and the river beds shall be filled with your blood. When I snuff you out I will cover the heavens and all the stars will darken. Ezekiel 32:5-7
Tradition- Just because you've always done it that way doesn't mean it's not incredibly stupid
Former RCN Sailor now Retired

Online MarkOttawa

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Re: Fixed Wing Gunships
« Reply #9 on: July 29, 2007, 19:33:03 »
The USAF is thinking of a rather different sort of gunship for the future (text subscriber only):

Special Operations
Future Bomber a Foundation for Next-Gen Gunship

Aviation Week & Space Technology, 07/23/2007, page 50
http://www.aviationweek.com/search/AvnowSearchResult.do?reference=xml/awst_xml/2007/07/23/AW_07_23_2007_p50-503993.xml&query=ac-130u

Quote
Afsoc considers move into stealthy gunships with AC-130 replacement

Printed headline: ARMED and LOW-OBSERVABLE

Air Force Special Operations Command (Afsoc) is planning to buy a fleet of bombers to house its future gunship, breaking with a decades-old tradition of using C-130 transports to carry heavy fires into the sky.

USAF’s future gunship, with stealthy features and retractable guns, will differ dramatically from today’s lumbering AC-130H/U aircraft.Credit: U.S. AIR FORCE

Requirements for the Air Combat Command’s (ACC’s) bomber and the gunship are still being drawn up. But, both commands agree on some key characteristics: a degree of low observability (LO)—not necessarily full stealth—and endurance. The future gunship will look nothing like today’s lumbering platform, and it could actually wind up appearing more like a B-2. “I don’t think the transport next-generation gunship will be on a mobility platform because you are not going to need to carry around all that weight,” says Lt. Gen. Michael Wooley, outgoing Afsoc commander. “If you are not carrying around that big gun and all of that heavy ammunition you don’t need a big [transport] that is in itself vulnerable.” Wooley will be replaced by his current vice commander, Maj. Gen. Donald Wurster, later this year.

ACC has announced it will not push the state-of-the-art for its next-generation bomber, which must be fielded beginning in 2018. That time frame and limited funding are prompting the Air Force to scale back earlier aspirations for a highly stealthy platform equipped with exotic directed-energy weapons. Afsoc has traditionally latched onto the Air Force’s larger buys when procuring a platform in order to prevent having to dedicate funding to a separate development project.

The new 30-mm. [Bushmaster] cannon is replacing a 25-mm. five-barrel gun as well as a 40-mm. Bofors cannon on the gunship.Credit: USAF CHIEF MSGT. GARY F. EMERY

What exactly entails LO is in the trade space that ACC and Afsoc will iron out with contractors. Col. Billy Montgomery, Afsoc’s top planner, says his needs for LO are likely less demanding than for the bomber, though a diminished radar cross section is needed to safely infiltrate hostile airspace and provide support for ground troops. “I think what we are trying to do with our gunship platform is not exactly the same thing that Air Combat Command would want its next-generation bomber to accomplish,” he says. “The level of stealthiness and LO technology is not to the same degree that you’d want a take-down-the-door next-generation bomber or F-22 to have. It would be better than what we are flying around.”

The speed with which anticipated weapons—both directed-energy and kinetic—can be employed allows the command to focus on LO instead of pure stealthiness. LO would involve tactics as well as technology. Special operators still expect to execute their traditional operational concept of orbits for close-air support, and flying in predictable patterns can compromise survivability. However, retractable weapons—rather than the guns protruding from the AC-130 platform—would reduce the time in which the future gunship would be most visible to an adversary’s radar and warning systems. “When [weapons] are as accurate as they are, and as we hope they will continue to prove to be, once you are on station you are going to do what you need to do with great accuracy. So, it is low observability, not no observability,” that is needed, says Wooley.

The existing fleet of AC-130H/U aircraft are anything but LO with four engines and a 105-mm. howitzer protruding from the left side of the aircraft. “We’d be very careful about having weapons tubes that would protrude from that next-generation platform,” Montgomery says.

LO would allow Afsoc to provide more consistent close-air support, including taking operations out of the dark and into daytime, Wooley says. Gunships often operate at low altitudes within range of shoulder-fired missiles and anti-aircraft artillery and they have traditionally operated at night, earning the nickname the night stalkers, for added protection against visual detection.

Afsoc’s need is not as urgent at ACC’s, so planners expect to initiate the gunship platform buy at the tail end of the bomber purchases...

...Afsoc is testing the addition of a new 30-mm. gun on the first of its four new AC-130Us. The total AC-130U fleet is at 17, including four purchased through war supplemental bills, and all will receive the gun. The 30-mm. gun will replace both the 25- and 40-mm. guns on either end of the aircraft. Wooley says the 40-mm. gun was a “problem child. We have literally had to go to naval museums to get a critical piece to get one of those guns firing.” The new 30-mm. weapon is more accurate, achieves a higher rate of fire and has ammunition in plentiful supply. Also slated for installation onto the AC-130U fleet is a low-light target designation system...

Mark
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Offline Thucydides

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Re: Fixed Wing Gunships
« Reply #10 on: July 30, 2007, 02:07:34 »
It is interesting that the "B-3" is being considered as the future platform for a gunship, it would be very interesting to say the least.

Some of the best fixed wing air support for CAS has come from fairly low performance aircraft; the Douglas Skyraider (AKA SPAD), OV-10 Bronco, AC-37 Dragonfly, etc., all planes that could fly slow enough for the pilots to see the target clearly as well as loiter close to the target area. Being able to fly off rough forward airstrips helps as well. "Puff the Magic Dragon" was a variation of the idea, but the bulked up AC-130 is considered too vulnerable to perform missions during the daylight hours after one was lost during the day in the first Persian Gulf War. I can imagine a multi million dollar B-3 gunship would work under many of the same restrictions as the AC-130.
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

aesop081

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Re: Fixed Wing Gunships
« Reply #11 on: July 30, 2007, 12:06:53 »


 AC-37 Dragonfly,

Theres no "C"

Its simply A-37 Dragonfly.......aircraft based on the T-37 Trainer aircraft

Offline Thucydides

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Re: Fixed Wing Gunships
« Reply #12 on: July 30, 2007, 22:44:01 »
Theres no "C"

Its simply A-37 Dragonfly.......aircraft based on the T-37 Trainer aircraft

Fingerspace error.....
Dagny, this is not a battle over material goods. It's a moral crisis, the greatest the world has ever faced and the last. Our age is the climax of centuries of evil. We must put an end to it, once and for all, or perish - we, the men of the mind. It was our own guilt. We produced the wealth of the world - but we let our enemies write its moral code.

Offline 3rd Herd

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Re: Fixed Wing Gunships
« Reply #13 on: November 07, 2007, 16:27:03 »
The Usual Disclaimer:

I know it is MSM from China but and mods feel free to move:

Indonesian Air Force seeks to modernize fleets
www.chinaview.cn  2007-11-05 19:37:31
http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2007-11/05/content_7016451.htm

JAKARTA, Nov. 5 (Xinhua) -- The Indonesian Air Force is asking a new budget for the purchase of new war planes to replace the aging fleets, the chief of staff said Monday.

The list of the aging planes includes U.S.-made ground support light planes OV-10 Broncos manufactured in 1976 and have been in service since 1979, the 1978 jetfighter F5 Tiger and the 1977 HawkMK-53.

(The purchase plan) is being studied and will be submitted to the Ministry of Defense in late December 2007," Chief Marshal Herman Prayitno was quoted by the national Antara news agency as saying in the East Java town of Lumajang.

The Air Force has nine Broncos but only four still hold airworthiness, and of 12 Tigers, only two are active. There are also only two out of eight Hawk MK-53s still in service.

In addition, only four of seven personnel carrier Fokker-27s made in 1978 are still worth flying.

The Air Force said it nominated either Russian Sukhoi-25 or Canada's Super Tocano to replace the Broncos. While the MK-53 is likely to be replaced with L-159 from the Czech Republic.

Editor: Song Shutao

Comments????????????
 
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Offline Ditch

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Re: Fixed Wing Gunships
« Reply #14 on: November 07, 2007, 17:13:03 »
Country slip or something - Embraer makes the Tocano fleet.
Per Ardua Ad Astra

Offline karl28

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Re: Fixed Wing Gunships
« Reply #15 on: November 07, 2007, 17:41:12 »
Zoomie  your right about who makes that plane but according to the link you provided the engine is produced by Canada at least that's what I am reading from it .

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Re: Fixed Wing Gunships
« Reply #16 on: November 07, 2007, 19:53:16 »
I recall being at Wright Patterson AFB many years ago and seeing either a C-130 that was undergoing conversion to AC-130 or an AC-130 having some modifications done and it was unbelievable. There were wires and wire bundles everywhere to tie all of the systems together. The whole port side was deskinned and the structural mods were really complex. At that point the work had been going on for months and according to what I recall the work was only preliminary.
That would have been the late 70's AC-130 model and when one considers the technological advances since that era a conversion would be an awesome undertaking.
 
But not lately. If I could do it all over again I would  change one thing.

Offline Ditch

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Re: Fixed Wing Gunships
« Reply #17 on: November 08, 2007, 01:45:06 »
Zoomie  your right about who makes that plane but according to the link you provided the engine is produced by Canada at least that's what I am reading from it .

Pratt and Whitney <Canada> makes the PT6 variant turbo-prop engine for thousands of aircraft worldwide.  Beechcraft King Air's, 1900's, etc. all use this excellent reverse flow, free turbine engine.
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Offline karl28

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Re: Fixed Wing Gunships
« Reply #18 on: November 08, 2007, 10:44:15 »
Zoomie 
 
I never realized how many engines where produced by that company learn something new every day .

Offline Aden_Gatling

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Re: Fixed Wing Gunships
« Reply #19 on: November 08, 2007, 19:25:45 »
Zoomie 
 
I never realized how many engines where produced by that company learn something new every day .

From wikipedia (yeah, I know) ...
Quote
The PT6, manufactured by Pratt & Whitney Canada, is the most popular turboprop aircraft engine in history ...

The PT6A is a free turbine providing 580 to 1,940 shaft horsepower (433 to 1,447 kW). Aircraft that it powers include:

    * AASI Jetcruzer 500 (1 x PT6A-66A)
    * Aero Ae 270 Ibis (1 x PT6A-42A)
    * Air Tractor AT-503 (1 x PT-6A-45R)
    * Air Tractor AT-802 (1 x PT-6A-67)
    * AMI DC3
    * Ayres Turbo Thrush
    * Beechcraft (Raytheon):
          o Beechcraft King Air (2 x PT6A-42)
          o C-12 Huron (2 x PT6A-42)
          o Beechcraft Starship (2 x PT6A-67A)
          o Beechcraft 99/C99 (2 x PT6A-27/2 x PT6A-36)
          o Beechcraft 1900 (2 x PT6A-65C (1900C), or PT6A-67D (1900D))
    * Basler Turbo BT-67 (2 x PT6A-67R)
    * CASA C.212 Aviocar series 300P (2 x PT6A-25)
    * CATIG/HAIG Y-12
    * Cessna Caravan I (1 x PT6A-114)
    * Conair S2 Turbo-Firecat
    * Croplease
    * De Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter (2 x PT6A-20)
    * De Havilland Canada Dash 7 (4 x PT6A-50)
    * Dornier Seastar
    * EADS Socata
          o TBM 700 (1 x PT6A-64)700 SHP
          o TBM 850 (1 x PT6A-66D)850 SHP
    * Embraer
          o Bandeirante EMB-110 and EMB-111
          o Tucano (1 x PT6A-25C)
          o Embraer EMB 110 Bandeirante (2 x PT6A-34)
          o Embraer EMB 121 Xingu (2 x PT6A-42)
    * Epic Aircraft LT and Dynasty (1 x PT6A-67)
    * Fieldmaster
    * Firemaster
    * Fairchild Dornier Turbo Skyservant
    * Frakes
          o Mallard
          o Mohawk (2 & times PT6A-45)
          o Turbocat
    * Greenwich Aircraft DC-3
    * Harbin Y-12 (2 x PT6A-27)
    * LET L410
    * Pacific Aerospace Corporation (PAC)
          o Cresco (1 x PT6A-34)
          o 750 XL (1 x PT6A-34)
    * Piaggio P.180 Avanti (2 x PT6A-66A)
    * Piper Cheyenne, I, IA, II, IIXL, III, IIIA (2 x PT6A-11/28/41/61/135)
    * Piper Malibu (1 x PT6A-42A)
    * Pilatus PC-6 Turbo Porter (1 x PT6A-27)
    * Pilatus PC-7 (1 x PT6A-25C)
    * Pilatus PC-9 (1 x PT6A-62)
    * Pilatus PC-12 (1 x PT6A-67B)
    * Pilatus PC-21 (1 x PT6A-68B)
    * PZL M-18/T45 Turbine Dromader (1 x PT6A-45)
    * PZL M-28 Skytruck
    * PZL-130 Orlik TC-II(1 x PT6A-25P)
    * Quest Kodiak (1 x PT6A-34)
    * Reims F406 Caravan II
    * Scaled Composites Model 133 ATTT (2 x PT6A-135A)
    * Shorts 330 (2 x PT6A-45)
    * Shorts 360 (2 x PT6A-65R)
    * Shorts 360-300 (2 x PT6A-67R)
    * Socata TBM-700/850
    * T-34C Turbo Mentor (1 x PT6A-25)
    * T-44A/C Pegasus (2 x PT6A-34B)
    * T-6 Texan II (1 x PT6A-68) (= Harvard II)
    * NAL Saras (Civilian Aircraft)- Pusher Propeller Configuration
    * Schweizer AG-Cat Turbine
    * Vazar Dash 3 Turbo Otter
    * Wheatherly 620 TP

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pratt_%26_Whitney_Canada_PT6
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Offline Spencer100

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Re: Fixed Wing Gunships
« Reply #21 on: November 13, 2007, 16:46:17 »
Take this for what it is worth.  A-67 (looks like a Havard II) They say it is a replacement for the old A-1 Skyraider

http://www.strategypage.com/htmw/htairfo/articles/20071107.aspx

They say it will be ready next year. 

(I posted this on the other thread too)

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Re: Fixed Wing Gunships
« Reply #22 on: November 13, 2007, 16:57:06 »
Ça explique, mais ça n'excuse pas.