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Author Topic: Douglas A-4T for FN  (Read 8070 times)

Online hesham

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Douglas A-4T for FN
« on: June 19, 2007, 08:42:41 am »
Hi,

The Douglas A-4T was a project for French navy (FN) to
replace the Dassault Etendard,but dropped in favour of
Super Etendard,did you hear about it ?.

Offline Jemiba

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Re: Douglas A-4T for FN
« Reply #1 on: June 19, 2007, 09:08:11 am »
There was even a A-4 on the french carrier Foch in 1972, even with
(very small) french roundels !
After the failure of the Jaguar M the Aeronavale was looking for a
substitute, the Douglas A-4 or the Vought A-7 were considered,
in the end it was a "buy french" decision with the Super Etendard.

More infos here :
http://www.ffaa.net/projects/skyhawk/skyhawk.htm
« Last Edit: June 11, 2016, 06:53:02 am by Jemiba »
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Online hesham

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Re: Douglas A-4T for FN
« Reply #2 on: December 20, 2013, 07:06:35 am »
Hi,


is there any drawing survivor for it ?.

Offline VictorXL188

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Re: Douglas A-4T for FN
« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2017, 03:29:16 pm »
When discovering this project a couple of years ago, I did do a quick mock up of what it might look like

Offline VictorXL188

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Re: Douglas A-4T for FN
« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2017, 03:30:39 pm »
Here's a couple of pics of the actual US aircraft used in the evaluation flights on Foch

Online hesham

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Re: Douglas A-4T for FN
« Reply #5 on: May 12, 2017, 04:38:43 pm »
Great find,thank you Victor.

Offline Archibald

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Re: Douglas A-4T for FN
« Reply #6 on: May 13, 2017, 10:49:15 am »
It was one of the contenders for replacement of the antiquated Etendard IVs by 1982.

Competitors were

- Jaguar M (a miserable failure)

- Mirage F-1M  (too much of an interceptor, overlapping with the Crusaders that did not needed replacement at the time)

- A-4T Skyhawk (considered obsolete)

- A-7 Corsair II
The best of the lot, what the French Navy really wanted, plus their links with Vought since 1939 and the V-156F, then the F-4U, and finally the Crusaders in 1964.
The A-7s would have been build under licence by Aerospatiale, a public wedge into Dassault private domination of French combat aircrafts since the 50's.  The French government disagred, however, and Aerospatiale was told to concentrate on civilian jetliners.
The A-7 was all-weather hence expensive and a little too heavy for Foch and Clemenceau. 

- An upgraded, low cost (supposedly) Etendard IV - the Super Etendard that ultimately won the day. 

A very good website in both French and English
http://www.ffaa.net/projects/skyhawk/skyhawk.htm
« Last Edit: May 13, 2017, 10:53:31 am by Archibald »
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http://www.caea.info/en/plan.php

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Political correctness: just bury your head in the sand for the sake of appeasement and "peace for our time"
- https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serge_Dassault#Affaires_

Offline circle-5

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Re: Douglas A-4T for FN
« Reply #7 on: May 13, 2017, 12:32:02 pm »
The A-4T would have been an excellent match for the diminutive size of the Foch and Clémenceau carriers.  Thankfully, a more nuanced policy has since been gaining traction, with renewed NATO cooperation.  Who could have ever imagined Hawkeye platforms on a French carrier back in those days?  Sacrebleu!
« Last Edit: May 15, 2017, 03:17:09 am by Jemiba »

Online hesham

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Re: Douglas A-4T for FN
« Reply #8 on: May 13, 2017, 02:51:47 pm »
Many thanks to you my dear Archibald.

Offline dan_inbox

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Re: Douglas A-4T for FN
« Reply #9 on: May 13, 2017, 11:46:59 pm »
the Gaullist "independent" attitude that began with leaving NATO and unceremoniously booting U.S. forces out of the country in 1966 (after obtaining all their nuclear secrets).
Can you substantiate this assertion?
The usual story here is that CDG booted out NATO when the US denied him the computers needed to acquire the A-bomb. Which led to Plan Calcul and various more-or-less successful projects before France got "la Bombinette".

Offline Jemiba

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Re: Douglas A-4T for FN
« Reply #10 on: May 14, 2017, 02:58:03 am »
The story and details of the French withdrawal from NATO aren't part of this topic here.
Please stay on-topic and avoid political discussions.
It takes a long time, before all mistakes are made ...

Offline kaiserd

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Re: Douglas A-4T for FN
« Reply #11 on: May 14, 2017, 03:12:36 am »
It would have been surprising if the French had purchased anything but a French-made airplane, regardless of development costs.  The logic of standardizing weapons across European forces was not high on France's agenda at the time.  This policy was in place since the Gaullist "independent" attitude that began with leaving NATO and unceremoniously booting U.S. forces out of the country in 1966 (after obtaining all their nuclear secrets).

The A-4T would have been an excellent match for the diminutive size of the Foch and Clémenceau carriers.  Thankfully, a more nuanced policy has since been gaining traction, with renewed NATO cooperation.  Who could have ever imagined Hawkeye platforms on a French carrier back in those days?  Sacrebleu!

It is worth noting that the Crusader was bought in the early sixties (just before the period you mentioned).
Specifically re: the A-4T would it have carried a radar (1) at all, and (2) compatible with the Exocet missile (key capability of the Super Etendard)?
If not then (and given that it lacked the Corsair II's then sophisticated all weather capabilities) then the lack of enthusiasm for the A-4T becomes more understandable.
« Last Edit: May 14, 2017, 03:14:16 am by kaiserd »

Offline Kadija_Man

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Re: Douglas A-4T for FN
« Reply #12 on: May 14, 2017, 10:32:37 pm »
Was the Exocet even on the horizon in the mid 1960s?

Offline dan_inbox

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Re: Douglas A-4T for FN
« Reply #13 on: May 14, 2017, 11:49:33 pm »
The Nord MM-38 development started in 1967. That's Mer-Mer, ie surface-surface, but there was also right away an air launched version, initially tested on helicopters.
Today's ASM version the AM-39 started in '74.

Offline Tailspin Turtle

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Re: Douglas A-4T for FN
« Reply #14 on: May 15, 2017, 07:53:18 am »
The A-4T was a variant of the A-4M, which did not have a radar in favor of a nose-mounted angle rate bombing system. However, the A-4 from the C onward had a radar for terrain clearance and navigation in all-weather conditions. Douglas would have been happy to put in whatever radar system that the French desired and would fit.