Skip to comments.Saab Goes American To Boost Boeing T-X Contender
Posted on 09/22/2017 8:14:19 PM PDT by sukhoi-30mki
At AFA, Boeing displayed this full-scale model of its T-X contender as backdrop to an announcement by Saab that its part of the jet would be built in the U.S. (Photo: Chris Pocock)
With the U.S. Air Force nearing a selection decision for its 350-airplane T-X advanced jet trainer requirement, partners Boeing and Saab used this weeks AFA Air Space and Cyber Conference to boost the American credentials of its contender. Boeing displayed a full-scale model on its stand and a large banner in the foyer that proclaimed American Jets for American Pilots. Saab announced that it would invest in a U.S. facility to build its part of the jet.
Saab president and CEO Hakan Buskhe said the Swedish company was mulling three options: build a new manufacturing facility on its own; jointly develop a new facility with a U.S. partner; or acquire an existing facility in the U.S. The U.S. is a strategic market for Saab, and the company plans for continued growth in the country, he said. Saab already has seven operations in the U.S., which, according to the company, perform solutions for radar and sensors, signature management, training and simulation and support services as well as for high-resolution 3D mapping, air traffic management and homeland security.
But neither he nor Leanne Caret, CEO of Boeing Defense, Space and Security, would specify exactly what parts of the jet were Saabs responsibility to provide. Caret said that the workshare proportions between the partners were competition-sensitive. But she did say that more than 90 percent of the aircraft would be made in the U.S.
Caret said that flight-testing of the Boeing/Saab T-X design has been successful. We have built something better, together, than either of us could have done on its own, added Buskhe. He said the design would also meet Swedens requirement for a new jet trainer. Its a great opportunity. It suits the Swedish air force very well, he contended.
Meanwhile, rival T-X contenders Leonardo-DRS and Lockheed Martin used the AFA event to continue their own marketing campaigns for the foreign-developed T-100 (M346 from Italy) and T-50A (from Korea) respectively. Lockheed Martin brought one of its two T-50A demonstrators to the airshow at nearby Andrews AFB that immediately preceded AFA. Leonardo DRS appointed a new vice-president to lead its bid.
Also at AFA, the commander of Air Education and Training Command Lt. Gen. Darryl Roberson said that the T-X was needed now. He said that his command had identified 12 key requirements that the current and ageing fleet of Northrop T-38s could not provide. He confirmed to AIN that the bidders had been invited to suggest the future mix between live flying and synthetic (eg: ground simulator) and virtual (eg: airborne synthetic) training. So we will decide that mix after we select the contractor, he added.
Because the fiscal 2017 budget has not been finally approved by the U.S. Congress, doubt has arisen on whether such a substantial new-start program could proceed. But officials said that a winner could be selected on time, even if the signing of a contract had to be delayed.
Top acquisition officer Lt. Gen. Arnold Bunch said the Air Force planned to spend $2 billion over the next five years on the T-X in order to achieve an initial operating capability in 2024, although, he added, we have been asked to accelerate that.
Well I don’t know about that, but they sure made some ugly-@$$ cars.
Well-built ugly @$$ cars. Lol
I was a T-38 IP at the Edwards AFB Flight Test center. Great plane. Even did Space Shuttle practice approaches in it. High key around 35k+, idle, gear down, speed brakes out and let her fall out of the sky to do a low approach on the desert runway (north of the existing runway). Neat.
Will miss it. We always joked that the airspeed indicator was connected to the throttle by a small wire. Pushing the throttles forward resulted in instant A/S response.
It really hated ice, however. One version of emergency engine shutdown was to open the canopy and whisper “ice”.
I was speaking to another European car mechanic, telling him why I hated working on them. He responded: "Every mechanic has a Saab story".
35k feet up, all gear out? Wow!
- Is that an extra noisy fall?
- Did you glide to the runway without thrust (assuming that’s possible)?
- What was the airspeed when coming out of the free fall?
[Well-built ugly @$$ cars. Lol]
Yes, the 3-cylinder, two cycle, wingless bomber.
I’m a retired AF air traffic controller. When working Scott Tower I had my one and only single engine flameout. F-106 cross country lost its engine and reported high key just about directly over the airport. I was expecting the aircraft to come in at a high speed and thought this would be a problem since Scott did not have any barriers. I expected the aircraft to land so fast that it would go off the end of the runway. Security Police were enroute to block the perimeter road off the departure end when the F-106 turned final. I was amazed at how slow the aircraft was and how smoothly it landed and rolled out. Suspect the pilot had practiced SFO before.
In ‘79, I bought a new Saab 900 - the first year for that series.
After a month, I had a legal page of QC & performance problems - a total piece of garbage.
Within a year, I sold it and began a long journey with Japanese cars including Acura, my current & previous car.
Since Saab, I’ve never considered another Euro...but the Jag F-type looks very, very intriguing.
Too bad, the VWs were pretty reliable, but small. The Scirocco, GTIs and Corrado were fun. Some Audis were great, they wrote the book on high-performance AWD, but they were electronics/gimmick-ridden, and hence flakey.
The Volvos were durable, but they were luddites on RWD, until more recently, and always kinda pricey.
The Brit cars are novelty toys, always plagued by Lucas electric foolishness.
In my 20’s, I had a MG....and know all about the Lucas curse. Fun to drive...when it worked.
Before my Saab, I had a Volvo 164 - nice but not really that much fun to “drive”.
I had 2 VW’s - the first one purchased at “Hollywood VW & Porsche” in early 70’s where the sticker price of a 911 was only $5,000.
Ahhhh, those were the daze....
Yes, the trick there was to rip out all the electrics (relays, fuse box, generator etc) and replace with Bosch or Delco components. Then it would be a pretty good car.
There is also a movement afoot where they pull the tired Morris drivetrain, and replace with a Camaro 3.4L 60degree V6 and T5 "world class" 5 speed...must be quite a rush.
Q: Why do the British drink warm beer?
A: Lucas refrigerators.
Funny Lucas joke....and probably true.
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