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Subject: RE: Hybrid Airship Concept    4/9/2002 3:47:00 AM
AS a means of potentially fast-moving heavy-quanty transport, I've always been receptive to this concept. The REAL BATTLE is with interservice and intraservice patriarchy, notsomuch the development of new hi-tech platforms. Combined with similarly fast-moving sealift and static, but well armed armed UAV's and low-alt airborne platform, ala SADARM et al., the US can easily close the critical gaps of time and speed of transit for reaction forcesof any strength!
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reserva120@HOTMAIL.COM    RE: Hybrid Airship Concept   4/16/2002 3:54:25 PM
HI JOE YOUR ABOUT HOW THE us COULD CLOSE THE GAP ALMOST OVER-NIGHT IF THEY REALLY WANTED TO. do you have any info on WIGS, i thought there was a British company working on the idea. Thanks Allan
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Slade    RE: Hybrid Airship Concept   5/25/2002 9:44:18 AM
I know the Sov's had been working on a WIG (aka. Caspian Sea Monster) until the end of the Cold war. I think it died from lack of money, typical of modern Russian aircraft programs. I don't know what the Brits are up to currently, but if they are working on it it's probably a small research project that worn't go anywhere. They are leasing C-17s and will buy A400's if the program continues, I doubt they have enough need/money for a new airframe. On the hybrid airship idea, if you could carry a tank platoon equivalent at 50-80+ knots per airship it would go a long way to providing a heavy "rapid reation" force able to built up quickly at secure areas on the edge of combat zones. It would, in my opinion, need to be an army program because the Airforce would give the money to jet transports becuase they are "faster" and the Navy would give the money to sealift because it is more "efficient" (lower per pound moved cost). It would also eliminate part of the reason for the "medium brigades" which have some use but a heavy force is still requiered no matter what some of the generals say.
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perfectgeneral    RE: Hybrid Airship Concept   7/27/2004 11:05:15 PM
Large body transports that include lighter than air pockets in with high density loads (tanks) amount to the same thing.
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doggtag    RE: Hybrid Airship Concept   8/27/2004 1:25:08 PM
Ekranoplan is the Russian word for these beasties, and a good amount of links on them is over at Lycos (here, boy!): (for a second, I thought maybe this hybrid airship thread was gonna be another SkyCat/giant cargo blimp debate...).
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wagner95696    RE: Hybrid Airship Concept   8/28/2004 5:27:53 PM
WIG is only practical over open water. That limits its utility over most of the world. Airships are severely impeded by mountain ranges and bad weather. That is why no one uses airships for flying through the eyes of hurricanes/cyclone/typhoons. Both are extremely vulverable to enemy defenses so while they can be used for transport in 'safe areas' they would not be very useful in war zones. Another layer of transport would still be necessary to move the men and equipemt to the front.
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Heorot    RE: Hybrid Airship Concept   8/28/2004 7:05:08 PM
The AWACS role is where they would really score. A large airship with a radar in the envelope and a multi-crew gondola could potentially stay on station for weeks.
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JohnBarry    RE: Hybrid Airship Concept   9/1/2004 10:46:54 AM
"Both are extremely vulverable to enemy defenses so while they can be used for transport in 'safe areas' they would not be very useful in war zones" Are they real any more vulverable than say the C-5 or C-17? If your talking about sending them into full blown air defence, sure, but your not going to be sending C-5’s or C-17 into that either. In seems like what your mostly talking about is popshots from shoulder fired missiles or small anti-aircraft guns. You may hit the airship but will that nessessarily bring the thing down? Since the airship doesn’t depend on the aerodynamic flow around the wings to stay up, it may be less vulverable than an aircraft. Also an airship is physically very big but what is the radar and heat signature of an airship? As for defence against missile, could you mount a airborne CIWS? I’m not stating anything for a fact, just posing questions to those who may know.
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ej    RE: Hybrid Airship Concept   9/1/2004 12:59:32 PM
first,there is already an AWACS airship under development-the HAA from lockheed . The RCS of an airship is not very big because most of it isnt made of metal! Its real problem is speed
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JohnBarry    RE: Hybrid Airship Concept   9/1/2004 1:40:37 PM
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wagner95696    RE: Hybrid Airship Concept   9/2/2004 8:09:04 PM
I believe such a airship could be useful in areas with extremely limited air threats but if there is any possibility of encountering enemy fighters they would be very vulnerable. There have been instances where AWACS type aircraft detected approaching enemy planes. They were able to postpone the intercept time by withdrawing while they awaited friendly fighters. An AWACS with 500+ mph speed challenged by a fighter whose cruising speed is only slightly faster can significantly reduce the closure rate, something an airship can not do. Even locally based light COIN aircraft,UAV's, or crop dusters would pose a serious danger. Could it become necessary to assign a permanent escort for the airships. All this ignores airships' vulnerability to bad weather and slow transit times.
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