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P1216 scenarios

zen

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Have just my copy of the ProjectTech Profile of the P1216 and rather interesting reading it is, Well done Mr Pryce!

Now while we could just have a debate about the merits of PCB and STOVL aircraft I think it's more interesting to take a look at the scenario where the P1216 might have been forthcoming.
The strongest case seems to be quite early, as a 'joint' RAF and RN effort to replace both Harrier and Jaguar, with the aim/hope of garnering licensed build for the USMC. Would be curious as to which countries might actually opt for this machine beyond the UK and US.
There is a clutch of rather obvious ones of course, though not all are such a simple matter of export as an option and are rather limited in likely purchase numbers. The likes of Spain, Italy, India et al.


The more curious are the likes of Sweden, could the P1216 have toppled their own domestic effort that produced the Grippen? If it does, does that raise its potential to a number of eastern European states like Czech Republic?


Then there is the side where one can see that this is a sort of 'British Rafale' in that it could end up a purely national effort that (as yet) hasn't gained hard export orders.
We can also wonder will Warton close, or will the Saudi's ride to the rescue buying Tornados?


Then there is the knock on effects.
Eurofighter is likely dead without the UK driving it along, and this suggests the minister making the decision is not Michael Heseltine who saw it in the context of pro-European use of industry to foster closer collaboration. Who would that be instead?
Does in turn mean without Heseltine, that the Westlands affair has a different outcome?


Back to Eurofighter, and the consequence of this seems most likely to be either Euro-Hornet or Euro-Falcon, licensed production of F/A-18 or F16 possibly with European sourced components.
Which oddly enough might take us back to the P1216, if RR produce the engine for this, won't they try to interest others in a more conventional version of that engine to vie with the US engine options?
But would they garner any orders for it?


Oddly one wonders if the Germans had opted for Euro-Hornet, would this seduce France? While Dassault would be opposed, other elements of Frances aviation industry could see the attractions of sourcing components to the Hornet that could then compete with the US.


IF we see the RN gain the P1216, then this make the process of designing and deciding for the new carriers a lot simpler. Crucially its cheaper, wouldn't we see the CVF (STOVL) vessel already in service now?


Then one comes to FOAS, does this actually strengthen the case for that as a new manned aircraft? After all the conventional version of the RB.532 would allow for a reasonably sized single engine CTOL aircraft or a twin of TSR.2 (or greater) potential.
 

SteveO

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I think the only way the P.1216 would have seen service is if the Falkland's War had gone badly for the British in 1982 and we had to retake the islands in 1983.

Obviously they would have done this with Sea Harrier's and GR3's in 1983 but the humiliating set back could have led to the UK funding a P.1216 demonstrator instead of the EAP.

P.1216 was designed for Tornado F3 performance with a Buccaneer's warload so if the demonstrator worked it might have seen service with the UK, Spain and Italy instead of the AV-8B.

It would have also been built if tossers weren't in charge of everything! ;D
 

Jemiba

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SteveO said:
I think the only way the P.1216 would have seen service is if the Falkland's War had gone badly for the British in 1982 and we had to retake the islands in 1983.
The only thing the P.1216 (or better the VSTOL fighter per se with a performance comparable to CTOL fighter) would have
needed, was a conflict, where one of the participants paralysed the other by a concerted attack against the runways.
Perhaps we should be glad, that the need for the VSTOL fighter was never proven ?
 

Archibald

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Would be curious as to which countries might actually opt for this machine beyond the UK and US.
Certainly all those who bought Harriers, and the light carriers that goes with it: Spain, Italy, India, Thailand.

I don't think the P1216 can topple Sweden national effort with Saab fighters. Neither can it topple the Rafale - although the Aeronavale might be intrigued enough by that machine to replace its antiquated Crusaders.

A neat thing with the P.1216 is that it might have flown easily from the Foch and Clemenceau, providing F-18 performances without degrading the catapults.
Rafale and F-18s could only take-off from Clems in very light A2A configurations.

France plan B if a second CDG could not be afforded (and it was not !) was to keep old Foch until 2004 at least. Then, Rafale performance was not the same from the two carriers... by contrast the P1216 would not care, since it did not used the catapults.

Without the Typhoon Germany would have bought F-18s or even F-22s, much like they had bought Phantoms and Starfighters earlier. That was their plan B all along. The ICE upgrade of their Phantoms (APG-65 radar) also made them extremely efficients.

The way I see it:
- Rafale and Grippen don't move by an inch
- Typhoon never build
- Germany buy american - F-22s, downscaled to F-18E/F after the end of Cold War
- P1216 fill both the Harrier / Typhoon "slots" for UK, Spain, and Italy navies, and perhaps (with a bit of luck!) the French aeronavale.
 

uk 75

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"Lucky Jim" Callaghan's second election win in 1983 is usually attributed to the brilliant performance of
his pre-emptiing of the 1982 Argentine invasion of the Falklands with a show of force by a Carrier Task Group.
His successor, David Owen, had been Foreign Secretary and with his American colleague, Secretary of State Andrew Young,
lured the Argentine Junta into a trap. The performance of the new Sea Harrier in air to air encounters with "20 of May" carrierborne
Skyhawks had not gone unnoticed in the US Navy.
Britain's decision not to renew its nuclear deterrent when the Polaris boats left service in the 90s had been another Owen initiative. Instead the RN would receive nuclear tipped Tomahawk missiles which could be deployed on any of its 12 Hunter killer submarines. The money saved would go into NATO conventional force modernisation. The US were keen to find NATO customers for their newly developed Sea Control Ships (SCS). So far only Spain had ordered one. However, Italy, Canada as well as Australia and South Korea were examining the ships. The US Navy was receiving its first "Freedom" class ships. However, it made no secret of the fact that they were "political" vessels forced on them in the early years of the Carter administration. They were useful ASW units but lacked a decent fighter capability.
Mc Donnell Douglas and British Aerospace were soon offering a design based on the BAe 1216. David Owen had seen a model of the plane on his post-Falklands visit to Warton. He immediately used his inluence with the Carter Administration to press the design for USN and US Marine use.
It is certain that without a US Navy order the 1216 Osprey would never have been built. As it was the aircraft was ordered in numbers by the RN and the USN. The US Marines were soon to follow. The design swung the Italians and the Australians into ordering SCS designs. India, South Korea, Brazil followed. Canada and the Netherlands decided to join a NATO programme with West Germany and Norway for three ships together with 1216s and Seakings.
Only the RAF resisted the design. Its Harrier force combined with the Jaguar fleet were thought to be sufficient for the next ten years. What the RAF wanted was a decent dog fighter to replace its Phantoms and team up with the Tornado. A conventional 1216 design was examined, but West Germany, although taking some maritime vstol aircraft, wanted a full blooded Phantom replacement. The Luftwaffe made no secret of its desire to get F15s. In true RAF fashion the debate was not resolved by the time of the 1987 election.
 

Mike Pryce

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had seen a model of the plane on his post-Falklands visit to Warton

Warton? Heresy! :eek:
 

zen

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Now if you're replacing the 150 odd Jaguar, and 140 odd Harrier and the 57 or so Sea Harrier, then this is for countries not called the USA or USSR quite a reasonable number for a national effort.
One might note that while the machine is unlikely to be as superlative as the Typhoon, it certainly would represent a faster climber than the Tornado ADV and is consequently more suited to the Lightning style QRA mission.


I'm not so sure about either Sweden or France. For the Swedes the cost is no small factor, and the basing flexibility of the P1216 while less than the Harrier is certainly in along the lines of their needs. It also needs be born in mind that they use licensed build of US engines for the Grippen and used US missiles, both of which have been credited with restricting their efforts to export the type.
So the Swedes could produce a lot of systems for their P1216s, radar, maingear, wings, and host of other subsystems. All beneficial to Swedish industry and a potential competitor for UK suppliers in exports, even if the basic machine might be made (for export) in the UK.


France is more complex, I can see the grandiose ideals of 'Europe' (france and germany) trumping Dassault (about the only thing that might do so) and so 'Euro-Hornet' could well fly with SNECMA/MTU engines not a million miles from those used on the Rafale. Or indeed the radar from the Rafale!
In which case its easy enough to see the Aeronaval select the Euro-Hornet, after all they did prefer the Hornet over Dassault's concepts as it was.


Whereas opting for the P1216 is explicitly a collaborative thing with the RN. The MN is thus caught between 'Europe' on the one hand and Frances overseas interests that more coincide with the UK.


India does raise some questions. Would they still have opted for rebuilding Gorshkov and funding the Mig29k?
Would they still be building the Jaguar under license and developing the Tejas? When instead they might opt for the P1216?


Italy seems caught in the middle with this sort of scenario. On the one hand their commitment to 'Europe' would suggest following on in the Euro-Hornet effort. But the P1216 more naturally follows on from the Starfighter and seems more complimentary to the AMX.


Spain looks likely to go for Euro-Hornet, any P1216 buy is likely to come from the US, rather than the UK.


Could we see the Thais buy this? They did opt for the Grippen, suggesting the Army was able to decide the matter, if their Navy is also tempted.....


Hot and high considerations could scupper the wider Indian bid, as they might South Africa.


Could we see Brazil go for it?
 

uk 75

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Harrier

The Prime Minister's visit to Warton in 1983 was primarily to see developments for the RAF's
fighter requirement. That the team from Kingston (sadly too far South to be of interest to
a Labour Government) turned up with a model 0f 1216 in a large packing case was not planned.
As things turned out it proved the making of British Aerospace in the 80s and 90s.

BAe had been working on single engined fighter designs (see Roy Boot's excellent book on the history of Blackburn and Brough) and were working closely with Saab on what later became the Gripen. However, the design which influenced the Gripen most was to be the 1216. The Swedish Air Force had been sceptical of the Harrier's poor performance for its needs but 1216 solved many of these problems. The Saab Gripen that entered service with the Swedish Air Force was a 1216.
Later, the Swiss and Austrian Air Forces followed the Finnish in ordering the type. After the fall of the Berlin, Czech and Hungarian Gripen units followed. More controversial was the purchase via BAe by South Africa of Gripens.

The close relationship between 1216 and Gripen allowed BAe to cash in on Saab's access to markets where Sweden rather than the UK had more clout.
 

zen

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Curious thought time.


RB.532 engine, a sort of scaled up Eurojet, in at least they share the same ancestor, the XG.40


Such an engine in more conventional form, (without the various vectoring nozzles and PCB but rather as a straight through type with a reheat chamber beyond) makes it possible to conceive of a single engined aircraft.
Such an aircraft would be larger than the Grippen, but perhaps smaller than the Eurofighter. In a similar league to the F16 albeit of a later generation in design terms.


Could such an engine also have served as the basis for a development for the JSF?
 

zen

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One thought that hits me is would the work in FLAME and the long range AAM associated with the P1216 get funded to service?

Another is would we see Sky Shadow EW pods added on for SEAD missions?

Then there is the potential of a mkii with computer controlled thrust vectoring. In theory this could make RCS bleed redundant and allow not just increases in manoeuvrability but reduced weight.

Logically the Blue Vixen radar might gain an AESA front end....
 

Archibald

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RAF AST are driving me crazy.

AST.403, 1977
a) short term VSTOL to replace Harrier mk.3
b) ground attack to replace Jaguar
c) agile fighter that become EFA Typhoon.

In 1979
a) is spun away into AST.409 > british AV-8B.
In 1984
c) rebranded AST.414 starts the Typhoon / Rafale saga.

So b) is left alone and by 1982 AST.410 gets started to cover it.
Then are added to it
- RN SHAR FA.2 successor NST 6464
- RAF supersonic VSTOL Jaguar successor that is... AST.403 is back !

Sounds right ?

While AST.409 is a simple and straightforward affair, AST 410 and 414 clashes on budget... Typhoon (414) win, 410 goes nowhere, P.1216 frozen.

That's OTL.
 
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Archibald

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From the mess above it is obvious that in order to save AST.410 something has to happen to clear AST.414 (= future Typhoon requirement) out of the way, somewhere between 1977 and 1984.

My own take would be to use the Mirage 4000 as a ploy circa 1978. This aircraft flies on March 9, 1979. Replace the M53 by that XG40 turbofan - the missing link between RB.199 and EJ.200. And voila - no ECA 1979, ACX, EFA or P.110.

A makeshift Typhoon 20% larger and in service by 1990 with interstellar performance.

Saudi Arabia is a first line customer - OTL the P.110 and ADV fought the 4000 for Al Yamamah in 1985 and 1988.
 
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Archibald

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www.secretprojects.co.uk/threads/rolls-royces-xg-20.18380/

Very interesting. We have found our Euro4000 engine !



So our bird is basically a 4000 with Tornado ADV F3 mk.104 engines.

There are pros and cons...
cons: less thrust.
pros: the RB.199 or any XG derivative is... 2/3 the size, weight, and fuel consumption of the M53. 1000 pounds lighter 10 ft shorter. Wham.

The 4000 as flown OTL with M53-2/M53-5/M53P2 already had jaw-dropping performance. Give it EJ200 2/3 the size and weight, same thrust and it can only be better, a truly superlative flying machine. Very much the larger 4000 airframe with the best Rafale and Typhoon DNA.
A flying Indominus rex LMAO.
 
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Archibald

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ok so the deal is to shoehorn the 4000 prototype into the 1979 ECA ECF preliminary studies.

 

zen

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For the P1216 we need that XG30 testbed built.
 

zen

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Question, how big is this XG30 core?

Potentially by using a smaller bypass fan this might fit in place of the M53.
 

Archibald

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As long as SNECMA gets tech transfers by 77-78 they may avoid creating M88 and somewhat duplicate EJ200 in the process...

Incidentally, ECF will be like Typhoon too big for the French Aeronavale...with Rafale M nowhere to be seen, you guess what happens when Crusaders starts falling into pieces after 1985...

P.1216 is way to go rather than F-18.

Which mean: P.1216 flying air cover for Super Etendards from Clemenceau, Foch and later CdG. And perhaps CVF.
 
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zen

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If there is synergy between France and the UK on a Heavy Fighter and the STOV/L aircraft. This surely sets up a stronger potential on a future Strike System...?
 

Archibald

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Much better than OTL Rafale vs Typhoon vs F-35, for sure.
Note that P.1216 for France and its carriers would be kind of anomaly, although a happy one.
Indeed since the collapse of the Mirage III-V in 1966 VSTOL subsonic or supersonic is dead for my country. And still is today. Last time I can think of any remote interest was a Harrier making approaches and landings on Foch and Jeanne d'Arc in... 1973.

ITTL buying of P.1216 relates to OTL Crusader vs Rafale-M vs F-18 controversy of 1988-89. Well it also happens ITTL except that there the Osprey offers F-18 capabilities... with a huge bonus: the catapults.

Even if Hornets had been procured they would have massacred the Foch old BS-5 even faster than the Crusaders, all this to carry only a pair of AMRAAMs and not even full tanks of kerosene. A buddy-buddy refueling by a Super Etendard would be needed every time !
To me that's really a lot of PITA even if a Hornet would be a quantum leap compared to a Crusader. As for Clemenceau its BS5 were even older so forget any Hornet on the old cranky thing.
So Foch only, waiting for CDG ? another PITA: during the balkan war both carriers
were used even if Clemenceau retired in 1997. By 1999 Foch was alone bombing Milosevitch. But in 93-96 we needed to rotate the two. Now if only Foch can handle the Hornets ben c'est la merde.

By contrast with all this Hornet catapult misery, a P.1216 really sounds like a godsend.
A golden opportunity, really. As far as cranky Clem' goes, a VSTOL P.1216 don't care. It is not only a better deal than both supersonic Crusaders and Hornets.
Even compared to a subsonic Super Etendard (that was far gentler to the BS-5 even at the Clemenceau very end) it is a good deal. Because it can go supersonic without the catapults at all. Just ask the brazilians: by 2015 it was the final nail in the Sao Paulo coffin as much as the machinery. Even with Skyhawks and even at flight rates 5 times lower than the French in the 90's.
The Sao Paulo present state is Clemenceau by 1996: at the very deep end of its rope.
 
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Archibald

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last development: French P.1216s flying out of modified Mistral assault ships. The whole idea paid by screwing the Super Etendard fleet that can't do that.

Decision taken in the late 2000s when the following facts become obvious
- on CdG P.1216s crush any Super Etendard any time any mission and without catapults.
- Foch lasted until 2004 but now it is really dead.
- too little too late for a 2nd Cdg
- Cdg can't be sold because nuclear
- a CVF with the british is too expensive and different from Cdg making a carrier fleet unmanageable for 4 decades.

Hmmm those new Mistral assault ships are really huge... you could land P.1216s on board like USMC Italy Spain do... oh wait. Cool idea. Congrats, now we have gained 3 carriers without breaking a dollar or an euro.

Funnily enough with both Rafale M and S.E gone the only birds using the 75 m CdG catapults will be the... E-2C Hawkeyes. How about that: talk about an embarassment of riches !
 
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Archibald

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Then there is the potential of a mkii with computer controlled thrust vectoring. In theory this could make RCS bleed redundant and allow not just increases in manoeuvrability but reduced weight.
Considering the current algorithm craze if applied to P.1216 for controlled thrust vectoring - then indeed some colossal improvements could happen. In safety of course (USMC Harrier carnage of pilots recently blew my mind, the horror) but also in raw performance.
See how algorithms recently allowed aerodynamic horrors like drones or... french flying man Zapata to take the skies without instantly crashing into the ground like so many VSTOL in the 50s 60s 70s... also V-22 Osprey martyrdom since 1989.
 
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