Moving time for the blog and a slightly different direction

I am moving and changing my blog. This blog known as ELP is going to take a different path.

I will write about Defens(c)e matters, but I will also write about other things: Australia, the U.S., politics, technology, and anything of interest.

The albatross known as the F-35 may come up from time to time, but those days are mostly done. If someone hasn’t figured out that it is a failure by now, they never will until it is too late.

I am going to be less abrasive. It was a useful tool that suited the purpose to get people’s attention but it is not me. And; it is a rather tiring act. I don’t want to be type-cast.

I want to help out others or at least highlight them more. That would be Galrahn, War News Updates, Alert5, and some others that have to be your daily read. I want to help Sam and crew at Lowy Institute’s The Interpreter Blog be more successful with their goals to have a wider coverage. They are important daily reads; for me anyway.

I will also be blogging more on a variety of Aviation Week articles.

Also, I don’t have to agree with something everyday; all the time to like it.

I am still working on the layout of this blog. As there are a lot of mobile users, don’t expect it to be anything but a simple format.

I hope you enjoy where I am going.

USAF 2012 budget and interesting questions about F-35 cost #military #auspol #cndpoli

The charts below are from the U.S. Air Force 2012 budget. They outline how much money the USAF has to fund to procure and field the F-35A.

USAF will be the largest alleged purchaser of this airframe. It is a similar type to what export customers such as Australia and Canada claim that they will purchase.

The sales force for the maker of the aircraft have been stating to countries like Australia and Canada that they won’t pay for U.S. research and development costs like the U.S. Government. What is interesting is that for the charts below, they have nothing to do with research and development costs either. They are only about what the USAF will pay to field the aircraft.

What can Australia and Canada really expect to pay for their F-35s? Follow the USAF. And there is no way that another country is going to get a lower price than the USAF.

Interesting is the more detailed chart. That is $106.756 million for the special roll-away price for the jet without an engine. Add the engine and you are now up to $120.541 million. Then there is another $2.411 million just for engineering change orders. So for 2012, the F-35A costs the USAF $122.952 million to get it out the door with no spares and support equipment.

Maybe if the Canadian DND and Australian New Air Combat Capability (NACC) and their fan base wish upon a star, it will show just how stupid they really are. How low will this price be in 2016? Who knows? The DND and the NACC don’t; that is for sure.

2012-USAF-F35bud

(click image to make larger)

2012-USAF-F35bud-breakdown

(click image to make larger)

OBOGS explained—in relation to the F-22 grounding #military

The OBOGS  or maintenance processes attached to it are being blamed for the F-22 grounding. Many fighter aircraft use OBOGS.

While not an F-22, this explanation of the F-20 OBOGS can get you up to speed on how the system works. Note, besides the basics, it is possible that the system explained doesn’t act quite like the one in the F-22.

Dilbert describes Unity and Gnome shell #linux

The Gnome interface–simple as it is–is about the most useable Linux graphical front end for mobile computers simply because in Ubuntu and Mint configurations, it just works out of the box with the common Dell and HP setups in business environments. XFCE and KDE are good but require more configuration work.

With the push to fix something that isn’t broken by forcing Unity and Gnome shell on Gnome 2.x users (Gnome 2.x will go away unless forked), Dilbert nails the situation as it is today for people that have to actually use their computers for day to day work. Unity and Gnome shell suck.

Trying to ask the right questions about the Osama raid #military

Investigative reporting….

Q: Can your senior intelligence official or yourself — can you tell the world anything about the last moments alive of Osama bin Laden? Did he die peacefully? Did he die violently? Can you tell us anything about his last moments?

SR. INTELLIGENCE OFFICIAL: He died during a firefight, Barbara.

Misleading the Hill right from the beginning #military

It is too bad Admiral Venlet and Mr Van Buren can not get through the first paragraph (not counting the greeting) without a raft of misleading statements to our elected officials. Let us look. From this PDF.

“The Joint Strike Fighter is the Department of Defense`s largest acquisition program,TRUE and its importance to our national security is immense.FALSE The JSF will form the backbone of U.S. air combat superiority for generations to come.FALSE It will replace the legacy tactical fighter fleets of the Air Force, Navy, and Marine Corps FALSEwith a dominant,FALSE multi- role,FALSE fifth-generation aircraft, FALSEcapable of projecting U.S. power FALSEand deterring potential adversaries.FALSE Furthermore, the JSF will effectively perform missions across the full spectrum of combat operations.FALSE For our international partners who are participating in the program, the JSF will become a linchpin FALSEfor future coalition operations FALSEand will help to close a crucial capability gapFALSE that enhance the strength of our security alliances.”FALSE

Call the justice department; get a judge and get an arrest warrant.

The first production model F-35 has flown, but where is the program going? #military

The first production example of the F-35 has flown.

AF-6 and another production example were scheduled to go to the F-35 training base at Eglin in Florida; near the end of the last fiscal year. Instead, they were delayed. Not only that, these first two production example aircraft will not go to Eglin. They will go out west to Edwards help with the development flight test program which is way behind.

What is left to deliver for the rest of the calendar year? About, 18 more aircraft if this recent story from Aviation Week is accurate.

“One goal to watch will be whether the program can make 20 deliveries this year against a revised schedule adopted in September (four SDD aircraft, one already delivered, and 16 LRIP jets). STOVL sea trials are still planned for this year, as are the first landbased ship suitability tests for the F-35C.”

The program has a mountain of challenges to get over. It has to deliver on all of the over-promise made by the big mouths in marketing. There is a tremendous amount of software that has to work on the aircraft, and people have to actually come forward with money to buy it at its no longer affordable price.

This is a big challenge for the program’s biggest potential buyer, the USAF, which for years, has had a free-ride in not having to throw money at a air-refueling tanker purchase. Now the USAF is committed to the tanker and has no space for anything other than the broken promise of the original low price quoted for the F-35. There is no practical way the USAF will ever see 1763 of this aircraft before they lose interest and can see better things to do with their money. That and the F-35 will not be able to stand up to advanced threats.

Expect to see a few hundred F-35s made before it is cancelled. In short, after all the years of broken promises, this program will never match the PowerPoint slide dreams.

The program may advance some. How it advances is yet to be seen. Anything is possible if you are willing to lower your expectations. For the DOD F-35 program office, that should be their new motto. There are no excess federal dollars sitting around to clean up this mess.