PDA

View Full Version : OT:F-117 Nighthawk, Retireing at 25



WilhelmSchulz.
01-26-2007, 01:27 PM
I just read today that the Airforce is starting to retire F-117s, After a long 25 years. Goodbye. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/sadeyes.gif

Goose_Green
01-26-2007, 01:34 PM
WOW - that was a short life - I'm amazed it is being retired http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/blink.gif

Minoos
01-26-2007, 01:46 PM
That might be related to the use of advanced materials?
Is the Raptor replacing 'old' F-117?

Celeon999
01-26-2007, 01:47 PM
Thats because of those Kraut spys blocking the air intakes http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/35.gif


http://img239.imageshack.us/img239/1171/154smiliecu8.gif
http://img239.imageshack.us/img239/3540/050308f6911g009sx1.jpg

geoffwessex
01-26-2007, 02:26 PM
Anybody British, and over a certain age, may be reminded by that picture of the Tony Hancock radio 'sketch' where the Engineer (Kenneth Williams) knocks on the cockpit window and asks to be let in. They're coming up to Mach 1.

schwarze_Katze
01-26-2007, 04:30 PM
The Raptor might be used in certain scenarios to replace the Nighthawk if stealth is needed and no B-2s are around. However, it's primary function is air superiority.

As for "early" retirement for the Nighthawk, I hate to say it, but she's obsolete in pretty much every way other than her low observable technology. Only being able to carry 2 bombs is a hindrance in today's air force.

Obsolete or not, I think the Nighthawk was one of the most amazing pieces of military hardware ever designed. So is the B-2.

ottoramsaig
01-26-2007, 07:23 PM
The best I can do is to agree that the Raptor is the replacement. All that money spent on the so called invisible bomber had significant flaws, Though perfect for the middle east conflict it may not have lived up to its rep in the Euro theater. The Raptor fits the bill as fighter/bomber of the future...........and thats enough for me on that. As for the B-2 I actually got a change to crew that....what a nice machine! Why did the USAF follow the politicians lead.

jake_nukem
01-26-2007, 07:29 PM
Rumour has it.... That the russians made a plane that could fly unditected from radar without all that expensive and heavy painting and coating..but its just a rumour... http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/shady.gif

[]_---_[] KITT
01-26-2007, 08:23 PM
Originally posted by jake_nukem:
Rumour has it.... That the russians made a plane that could fly unditected from radar without all that expensive and heavy painting and coating..but its just a rumour... http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/shady.gif

It's called a kite. It was originally invented in China 200 B.C. now 2200 years after that we've just realised its potential as low observeable technology. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/winky.gif

Now i'm trying to convince my government to use pigeon laden with hand grenades to fly into enemy's jet intake. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/88.gif . The reason? it's cheaper and easier to train the pigeon than having to train pilots and have them fly to enemy aircraft to launch the ever expensive missile. Besides a pigeon looks more innocent than a missile trails

schwarze_Katze
01-26-2007, 08:26 PM
KITT, I'm not sure if you're from Russia or not, but that comment almost made me ruin a keyboard with a mouthful of beer! http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/88.gif

KaleunFreddie
01-27-2007, 02:38 AM
Originally posted by jake_nukem:
Rumour has it.... That the russians made a plane that could fly unditected from radar without all that expensive and heavy painting and coating..but its just a rumour... http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/shady.gif

It wouldn't surprise me. Have you noticed how the Russians always come up with the better planes. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_cool.gif

Messervy
01-27-2007, 08:23 AM
Yeah! They managed to perfect a close circut rocket engines, that power most of American satelite launching rockets.

The secret of a success is in convergence not in divergence!

Realjambo
01-27-2007, 10:02 AM
Not a bad history, the US only lkost one I brlieve - shot down in the Kosovan war, by Serbian forces using obsolete Russian eqpt!

I also read reports that they were notoriously difficult to fly, but hey, what an impressive piece of engineering - that you can't deny.

Celeon999
01-27-2007, 10:22 AM
The gun the serbs used to shot that F-117 down was an old flak gun made in the 70ths.


Actually it was no masterpiece to bring that bird down. Some very smart people ordered the F-117ths to use the same flight path over and over again. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/35.gif

After the third of fourth bombing run the serbs figured out which path the bombers take and set up the aa-gun on a hill along it.

Maybe someone forgot that stealth doesnt mean that the plane is invisible to the human eye http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_rolleyes.gif http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

Additionaly they stationed three AA-radars set up as an triangle and gave all three stations a telephone connection so that they can exchange their data.

Every station got a weak radar signature. But at least it was enough to determine the direction the reflection is coming from.

This way they could simply triangulate the position of the incoming F-117ths.


The german Fraunhofer Institute of Technology simulated that with a small scale model of the F-117 in a test chamber and found out that you can locate the F-117 very precisely when it flies into an prepared "radar spiderweb" like that one http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

One radar was emitting , the other two were just recieving. The F-117 model deflected the waves coming from station number one into all directions but nearly none back to radar 1. ( Like it is ment to be)

But radar 2 and 3 catched pretty much of those waves http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif So it was easy to triangulate the position of the model within the test-chamber.


Correction : I just read that it was a SA-3 missile that downed the F-117 http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

You can see the wreckage in a museum in Belgrade

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/8/84/F-117_canopy.jpg/800px-F-117_canopy.jpg

tuddley3
01-27-2007, 11:30 AM
It seems like only yesterday this aircraft took it's maiden voyage. And my beloved B-52 is still flying after 50+ years.

AO1_AW_SW_USN
01-27-2007, 10:57 PM
Adios, Mr. "Woblin' Goblin". You may now join the F-14 Tomcat in the Boneyards of an abandoned Arizona airfield.

Messervy
01-28-2007, 04:35 AM
@ Celeon
It was not an ordinary SA-3 missile but the
slightly modified one.

They tracked F-117`s not with military radar but with ordinary weather radar where they could pick up a strange wind blowing at 400 knots.

Celeon999
01-28-2007, 04:58 AM
Originally posted by Messervy:
@ Celeon
It was not an ordinary SA-3 missile but the
slightly modified one.

They tracked F-117`s not with military radar but with ordinary weather radar where they could pick up a strange wind blowing at 400 knots.


Uh ok. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/blink.gif

They must have had additional thermal imagers to target the F-177 with that missile launcher.

Am i the only one that thinks that the equipment was a little too high-tec and expensive for the serbian military http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/halo.gif

http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

Another thing : Look at the pic of the wreckage. I believe that thing which the helmet lies on is the backpart of the pilot ejection seat.

See those yellow levers ? I bet thats the trigger of the ejection seat.

You can see that they have been pulled to start the eject process. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

I do not want to come in that situation. You can be lucky when your spine survives the ejection unhurt. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/blink.gif

Messervy
01-28-2007, 05:24 AM
They had thermal tracking devices on Mig 29`s. Due to lack of servicing most of them were grounded but they could however scavange some parts and put them in good use. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

I even have a piece of F-117`s anti- radar coating.
A friend of mine who is half Serbian and half German brought it to me after visiting some relatives shortly after the bombings.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v675/Messervy/F117Certificate.jpg

Realjambo
01-28-2007, 06:13 AM
You can watch film of the wreckage here:

F 117A Wreckage (http://youtube.com/watch?v=Y-CyCD8039o)

Celeon999
01-28-2007, 07:40 AM
Originally posted by Realjambo:
You can watch film of the wreckage here:

F 117A Wreckage (http://youtube.com/watch?v=Y-CyCD8039o)


You can see one of the engines, a wing part, and the other stuff seems to be parts of the landing gear. It seems to have survived the crash pretty good. Doesnt look burned.

Goose_Green
01-28-2007, 07:58 AM
Didn't the US launch a Special Forces mission to destroy what was left of the wreckage?

Realjambo
01-28-2007, 08:38 AM
Didn't the US launch a Special Forces mission to destroy what was left of the wreckage?

I expect so Goose.

Look at the picture of the cockpit wreckage - Further delving into he Jambo Library reveals the name on it was not that of the actual pilot....

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- President Clinton telephoned the U.S. pilot of the F-117A stealth fighter-bomber that crashed over Yugoslavia and also made congratulatory calls to several members of the team that rescued him, the White House said Monday.

Clinton placed the calls Sunday from the Camp David presidential retreat in Maryland.

The president returned to Washington on Monday morning but said nothing to reporters as he stepped from a helicopter onto the White House lawn.

Name on U.S. plane wasn't that of pilot ...

The pilot is reported to be in good condition at Aviano Air Base in Italy.

Although his name has not been released, it wasn't Air Force Capt. Ken Dwelle, the pilot whose name was visible on a piece of the wreckage.

Dwelle, a nine-year Air Force veteran, had flown the same Nighthawk dozens of times as a flight instructor at Holloman Air Force Base in New Mexico. But this was one flight he was glad he missed.

"When I saw the wreckage on the news, I knew right away what it was," said Dwelle, who has been teaching pilots to fly the $45 million plane for the past 3 1/2 years. "When I saw what was burning, it was surprising."

The first thing Dwelle did after recognizing the plane was to call his mother and grandmother. Once his family saw his name on the plane, Dwelle said, "I knew the calls would be coming."

... And here's why

Neither the Pentagon nor NATO has commented officially on what caused the Air Force stealth fighter-bomber to crash Saturday, 30 miles northwest of Belgrade.

There also have been few details about the dramatic six-hour rescue of the pilot who flew Dwelle's old Nighthawk.

Dwelle, who said he knows the pilot, would not identify him.

Pilot names are inscribed on the planes based on seniority, he said. But, since there are more pilots than planes, not every pilot gets his name on a plane.

"Just because a pilot's name is on the airplane, that does not mean that is the only pilot assigned to fly that airplane," said Brig. Gen. William Lake, 49th Fighter Wing commander.

"We don't paint airplanes every time someone different comes along," Lake told reporters on Sunday.

'I picked the right mission to miss'

The 49th Fighter Wing is the only stealth fighter squadron in the nation.

Dwelle flew stealth fighter missions over Iraq and flew every time the 49th Fighter Wing was deployed, until this latest mission. "I guess I picked the right one to miss," he said.

He said he is leaving the military next month to become a commercial pilot and that's why he didn't fly this time.

Dwelle, who never followed through on a plan to photograph himself with the fighter, said he misses the plane but is glad the pilot who crashed was rescued without any serious injuries.

"Planes are replaceable," he said. "Pilots are not."

Celeon999
01-28-2007, 08:52 AM
Originally posted by Goose_Green:
Didn't the US launch a Special Forces mission to destroy what was left of the wreckage?


Two F-15 stood ready to bombard the wreck site but the mission was cancelled. Propably due to the fact that the serbian TV was already at the crash site.

Looks like i was wrong about "doesnt look burned"

It looks like it crashed in a pretty flat angle but upside down http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/blink.gif

http://www.aeronautics.ru/f117wreck21.jpg
http://www.aeronautics.ru/f117wreck12.jpg
http://www.aeronautics.ru/f117wreck13.jpg

The wooden wings

http://www.aeronautics.ru/img001/f117001.jpg

The canopy. Looks like it fell on the same field like the rest of the plane or it was just brought there for the media.

http://www.aeronautics.ru/f117wreck22.jpg


Well, it just worked because the serbs knew the flight path.

What stuns me is how ineffective the serbian AA defences were....

I believe this was the only NATO plane that was shot down during the operation ? Or am i wrong ?

For example ,the Luftwaffe flew an unknown number of attacks on the serbian air defences and was caught in air fights with Mig-29´s on a few occasions but didnt lost a single plane.

The exact number of missions flown has never been published except that over 200 HARM missiles were used during the operation. Inofficialy a few Mig-29 were shot down.

The only Luftwaffe losses were several CL-289 recon drones which were easy to shoot down.

http://www.aeronautics.ru/germandronedown01.jpg

turnip_tick
01-28-2007, 01:09 PM
Originally posted by AO1_AW_SW_USN:
Adios, Mr. "Woblin' Goblin". You may now join the F-14 Tomcat in the Boneyards of an abandoned Arizona airfield.

Davis Monthan AFB is abandoned. http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_confused.gif

when did that happen.

The -117 is being replaced by the F/A 22 it has very similar capabilities as the 117 in the A/G role but also has the added benefit to be able to defend it self in the A/A enviroment. the 22 has super cruise ability the 117 doesn't. super cruise means that it can reach super sonic speeds with out after burner, a huge advantage. Thrust vectoring means that it can easily out manouver any air threat it is likely to meet in the next 20 years.
The 22 is also slated to replace the F16. F15 crews need to watch their 6 too as the eagle won its design competion in 1969 and first flight was 1972. that makes the F15 vietnam era and in two years the design will celebrate the big 40 in four years we will see forty years of service.

Celeon999
01-28-2007, 01:27 PM
super cruise means that it can reach super sonic speeds with out after burner, a huge advantage.


Just like the Eurofighter http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/25.gif

turnip_tick
01-28-2007, 02:06 PM
as far as i know those are the only two so far

AO1_AW_SW_USN
01-29-2007, 12:50 AM
Davis Monthan AFB is abandoned.

when did that happen.



Relax there cowboy, it's just a small figure of speech.

Boy, it seems like you love to pick at my posts for some reason... so I'll be sure to steer well clear from you and any of your future posts.

jake_nukem
01-29-2007, 12:51 AM
Ive heard the F/A-22 raptor has some problems or glitches with its programing, heres on link which states a glitch http://www.popularmechanics.com/technology/military_law/1547927.html
And ive also heard a pilot got stuck for a number of hours(5 i belive) in his cockpit because the canopy failed to open.

turnip_tick
01-29-2007, 10:31 PM
Originally posted by AO1_AW_SW_USN:
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-title">quote:</div><div class="ip-ubbcode-quote-content">Davis Monthan AFB is abandoned.

when did that happen.



Relax there cowboy, it's just a small figure of speech.

Boy, it seems like you love to pick at my posts for some reason... so I'll be sure to steer well clear from you and any of your future posts. </div></BLOCKQUOTE>

I don't intend to pick at your posts at all. The fact is that I for a moment thought it might have been closed. I was in the USAF at one time and so I do understand that base closures and realignments do happen often without any real reason besides political, and so it could have been possible it would have been very surprising. I thought for a moment that there that it may have happened.

I apoloqize if my responces have been taken in a way they were not intended.