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Single pilot KC-46?

Old 07-18-2022, 07:43 PM
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Default Single pilot KC-46?

YGBSM…



https://www.militarytimes.com/news/your-air-force/2022/07/18/air-force-considers-removing-co-pilot-from-boeing-kc-46-tanker-crews/
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Old 07-19-2022, 02:45 AM
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Or how about we...wait for it...actually invest in defense and boost fighter production, activate a couple more UPT squadrons at some better locales, and increase crew production. Nope, let's go with the "more with less" as usual mentality. Oh, we can't get more, we can't build more, so let's try to limit our losses; the exact type of mindset that will lose wars.
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Old 07-19-2022, 06:24 AM
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Shrinking the number of airmen onboard a tanker could help minimize potential troop casualties...”

lololol as if the Air Force gives two ***** about that. This is so dumb; what a train wreck the Air Force is.
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Old 07-19-2022, 06:18 PM
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Don't tanker pilots have some of the longest missions in the Air Force...? (with the lone exception to possibly B-2s)
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Old 07-20-2022, 06:57 AM
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Originally Posted by jaxsurf View Post
Shrinking the number of airmen onboard a tanker could help minimize potential troop casualties...”

lololol as if the Air Force gives two ***** about that. This is so dumb; what a train wreck the Air Force is.

They care about personnel costs, and retirement costs (although DoD already took a bite out of the later with the blended thing).
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Old 07-20-2022, 07:00 AM
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Originally Posted by StockAF View Post
Don't tanker pilots have some of the longest missions in the Air Force...? (with the lone exception to possibly B-2s)

Would presumably augment for longer missions.

They could also use an airline style IRO (likely enlisted) to sit in the right seat and assist the rated pilot. That would be for workload, not to augment the pilot while he takes a long break. Although I guess they *could* let an enlisted IRO fly the plane on AP in cruise while the pilot sleeps.

It's actually been done before with "tankers"... USN S-3.
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Old 07-20-2022, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by rickair7777 View Post
Would presumably augment for longer missions.

They could also use an airline style IRO (likely enlisted) to sit in the right seat and assist the rated pilot. That would be for workload, not to augment the pilot while he takes a long break. Although I guess they *could* let an enlisted IRO fly the plane on AP in cruise while the pilot sleeps.

It's actually been done before with "tankers"... USN S-3.
Still, it creates a single point failure mode. I suppose you could have the single pilot wear one eyepatch to decrease the chance they might be flashblinded by a laser or nuke near-miss, but you might well have the better part of a squadron of fighters depending on that one tanker to get them to the target or get home.and it isn’t just the cost of the ~$200 million tanker and 3-4 F-35s at $100 million apiece you are talking about, but the cost of all the infrastructure and logistics necessary to get them mission-capable to begin with - not to mention the lives of the receiver aircraft crews themselves you are putting at risk.

All to save one FO slot?

Maybe they can subcontract the FO slots out to Skywest or Republic.
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Old 07-20-2022, 08:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Excargodog View Post
Still, it creates a single point failure mode. I suppose you could have the single pilot wear one eyepatch to decrease the chance they might be flashblinded by a laser or nuke near-miss, but you might well have the better part of a squadron of fighters depending on that one tanker to get them to the target or get home.and it isn’t just the cost of the ~$200 million tanker and 3-4 F-35s at $100 million apiece you are talking about, but the cost of all the infrastructure and logistics necessary to get them mission-capable to begin with - not to mention the lives of the receiver aircraft crews themselves you are putting at risk.

All to save one FO slot?

Maybe they can subcontract the FO slots out to Skywest or Republic.
I didn't say I thought it was a good idea.

The Navy had similar issues with concepts to automate ships and reduce headcount... all well and good until you get battle damage and have to fight the ship AND do damage control with a skeleton crew.
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Old 07-20-2022, 10:07 AM
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Originally Posted by rickair7777 View Post
I didn't say I thought it was a good idea.

The Navy had similar issues with concepts to automate ships and reduce headcount... all well and good until you get battle damage and have to fight the ship AND do damage control with a skeleton crew.
It wasn’t personal. The “you” was directed at the corporate USAF, not second person singular. Sorry. And yeah the whole LCS concept is turning out to be a massive waste of resources for poorly reliable and quickly obsolete big jet skis, but THAT’s another discussion.
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Old 07-20-2022, 11:17 AM
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Originally Posted by rickair7777 View Post
They care about personnel costs...
Exactly. They don't actually care about their pilots ("minimize potential troop casualties"), they only care about how much they cost.
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