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16 posts • joined 10 Feb 2014
@John Smith 19, the problem with that is the more you encrypt, the more you have to compress signals, the easier the signal is to degrade by jamming, you do not have to spoof and take control you only have to break the live feed link and the drone becomes a useless powered glider as it endlessly resends packets for error correction.
Agreed, in fact most of these conflicts could have used WW2 turboprops for close air support - the C130 Spectre gunship for instance. Most current drones are turboprop after dropping high speed turbofans, they are cheaper and more expendable. But dones will be playing second fiddle in the communication ECM war, in the same way aircraft have with missiles. To defeat the missile you needed to create an entirely new aircraft, missiles only needed to upgrade the seeker.
"Don't think its a like for like comparison between Taranis costs and an F-35, there is only one Taranis Demonstrator and there are 100 F-35's. Therefore all the design and development costs are against a single Taranis, while you spread the F-35 costs across 100 aircraft."
Actually this brings the F35 price down, but the reality is that is still not a complete program, is still in development and is a decade behind schedule so we put it right back up again. There is also the reality that Canada and Australia will be dropping out as the costs rise which will make the unit cost soar for the F35A but thats another thing entirely. Taranis is a BAE program and nothing they sell from development turns out anything but hugely over budget.
"£168Million TOTAL cost, for the entire development process up to this prototype, the final per-craft cost is not known yet... But I would be shocked if it was more than £10Million,and I suspect it will be a lot less, the biggest cost I expect will be the engine, since supersonic capable jet engines are NOT cheap....."
This is BAE, you know the company which gets chummy with the MOD chaps so they pay 100 times the cost of an off the shelf equivalent.
"And how do you get HARM to the target without a carrier aircraft? (ps I see UK no longer has ALARM)"
Last time I checked the RAF still operated Tornado GR4 and Typhoons - is this the silly question section ?
"Only if that's the way you programme it. How about if the default is "press on, and see if comms regained" or "carry on and bomb the pre-defined target" ?"
Only if you never liked the aircraft and never wanted to see it again.
"You are assuming there will be a battlefield. What about an unexplained gas explosion with traces of RDX in the debris?"
All depends, you are of course assuming we would be comitting some form of terrorist action on an opponent who would not be able to track or jam a flying drone attack, with an aircraft costing £200 million to drop a £18,000 bomb. Does this happen often ?
At £168 milion per aircraft, at what point is this cost lower for instance if you can get 4 super hornets for that price. Stealth is good, but most missions are flown against Pirates, Bushmen with rifles and Bushfire conflicts where stealth is not needed. The F22 raptor is 18 years old and has never seen a war, I think the term is appropriate technology and the UK just has not got the opponents to justify a fleet 10 Taranis which would buy most of a county in England. We had the same problem with the BAE invisible tank.
The Taranis drone is £168 million per aircraft which only compares well with the F35 $392 million, lets put it into another perspective the A-10 costs $12 million and if radar is such a problem the odds are we would purchase a HARM at $284,000 to remove it. We could get 1000 HARM missiles for each Taranis and instead of avoiding radar we would erase it from the battlefield.
Taranis also suffers from a communications problem, like all drones can be spoofed and disrupted by interfering with its GPS signals(widespread with a Russian system Avtobaza), and wide frequency jamming it is therefore vunerable in every way possible because its reasoning ability is external to the aircraft in a remote location. The default actions for an unmanned aircraft which loses its communications is to return home without completing its mission, it is therefore suitable only for attacking such opponents who do not have the resources and know how to interefere with communications.
Yes but you only want to buy an OS once as a client, but Office is upgraded every 3 years and Microsoft has a range of Development Software, Digital Media Authoring Software and Internet Software such as Skype. Have you ever heard of Microsoft Premier Support ?. They are not just dropping the OS, but support for Microsoft the software packages on it if they can and people paid for that since 2001.
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