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Rammjaeger
01-07-2008, 08:05 AM
"The lower number of active duty troops mainly reflects the larger amount of technology, and knowledge, now used in warfare. Consider, for example, the differences between a World War II bomber, and a modern one. The principal World War II bomber was the B-17, which weighed 29 tons, had a crew of ten, and could carry three tons of bombs to targets 1,500 kilometers away. In current dollars, each B-17 cost about $2.2 million. But that was because over 12,000 of them were built. If bought in much smaller quantities, as is typical in peacetime, each B-17 would cost over $10 million. Now compare that to a modern bomber of comparable size (or at least weight), the F-15E. With a max weight of 36 tons, an F-15E can carry up to seven tons of bombs three or four times as far as the B-17, and has a crew of only two. But this $50 million dollar aircraft is much more than five times as lethal as the B-17. That's because of guided bombs. A B-17 carried a dozen 500 pound bombs, but it took over 300 of these unguided bombs to guarantee a hit on a target below. The smart bombs of the F-15E guarantee a hit with two bombs (actually, it's 1.something, because there are occasional system failures with smart bombs). The smart bombs also glide 40 kilometers or more, allowing the F-15E to avoid most anti-aircraft fire."

http://www.strategypage.com/htmw/htatrit/articles/20070901.aspx

This is not the only source arguing that the popular notion of military hardware costs spiralling steadily upwards since 1945 is mostly a myth.

Rammjaeger
01-07-2008, 08:05 AM
"The lower number of active duty troops mainly reflects the larger amount of technology, and knowledge, now used in warfare. Consider, for example, the differences between a World War II bomber, and a modern one. The principal World War II bomber was the B-17, which weighed 29 tons, had a crew of ten, and could carry three tons of bombs to targets 1,500 kilometers away. In current dollars, each B-17 cost about $2.2 million. But that was because over 12,000 of them were built. If bought in much smaller quantities, as is typical in peacetime, each B-17 would cost over $10 million. Now compare that to a modern bomber of comparable size (or at least weight), the F-15E. With a max weight of 36 tons, an F-15E can carry up to seven tons of bombs three or four times as far as the B-17, and has a crew of only two. But this $50 million dollar aircraft is much more than five times as lethal as the B-17. That's because of guided bombs. A B-17 carried a dozen 500 pound bombs, but it took over 300 of these unguided bombs to guarantee a hit on a target below. The smart bombs of the F-15E guarantee a hit with two bombs (actually, it's 1.something, because there are occasional system failures with smart bombs). The smart bombs also glide 40 kilometers or more, allowing the F-15E to avoid most anti-aircraft fire."

http://www.strategypage.com/htmw/htatrit/articles/20070901.aspx

This is not the only source arguing that the popular notion of military hardware costs spiralling steadily upwards since 1945 is mostly a myth.

icrash
01-07-2008, 12:06 PM
The myth isn't as serious when you start comparing apples to apples. Amazing how much technology has changed things too isn't it? At one point, the Norden bombsight was considered high tech.