A giant Antonov AN-124 cargo aircraft touched down at Glasgow Prestwick Airport on Monday to make an oversized delivery of a new Operational Flight Trainer (OFT) heading to RAF Lossiemouth, according to the Ministry of Defence.

The simulator, say the MoD, is one of two that will be installed in the new £100-million strategic facility built by Boeing Defence UK. From Autumn 2020, RAF Lossiemouth will be the headquarters of the UK’s submarine-hunting Poseidon MRA Mk1 Maritime Patrol Aircraft fleet.

“The first simulator was offloaded from the specially chartered Antonov – which took off from Orlando, Florida – and transported by road to RAF Lossiemouth, where it arrived in the early hours of Tuesday morning.”

Mark Corden, the Project Manager for Training in the Poseidon delivery team at DE&S, said:

“The simulators provide training specifically for the pilots who will be flying the Poseidon fleet. They also have the compatibility to link up with the mission simulators used by the rear crew, allowing them to train together. It’s an essential part of making sure the pilots are fully prepared to operate the new fleet of aircraft. The weight of the simulator is not such an issue. It’s the width and height, which make it too big to be transported by any RAF aircraft, such as a C-130J, A400M or C-17. The Antonov is one of only a few aircraft in the world large enough to transport it.”

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Rob Collinson
Rob Collinson
1 month ago

What beast the AN-124 is!!!

Cam
Cam
1 month ago
Reply to  Rob Collinson

It’s a beast alright! Her big Brother Miriya the AN-225 is an even bigger beast.

I wonder why the an-124 couldn’t land at Kinloss or RAF Lossiemouth thought , too big or heavy?

Mark T
Mark T
1 month ago
Reply to  Cam

The airfield at Lossie is closed for runway work, scheduled to reopen later this year. All to do with operating the P8.
An124 certainly is huge, in the late 90’s i went on board one that had swallowed a Sea King and Chinook for transport to the Falklands.

Cam
Cam
1 month ago
Reply to  Mark T

Does that mean fast jets and QRA is at Kinloss for now?

Longtime
Longtime
1 month ago
Reply to  Cam

Kinloss runway length is pretty close to an an-124 minimum take off roll

Cam
Cam
1 month ago
Reply to  Longtime

Ah right cheers.

Herodotus
1 month ago

Rather humbling to think that this is Soviet era technology that the US/UK are relying on!

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  Herodotus

It is kinda amusing that the US are using Russian planes.

Paul42
Paul42
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

Wonder if one of these would fit in a C5? You have to bear in mind it was Boeing that were delivering this,not the US Military.

The Big Man
The Big Man
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

Even more amusing is that the two 747-8’s (VC-25B’s) purchased to replace the current VC-25A’s (Air Force One) are from a bankrupt Russian airline called Transaero who ordered the planes and never took delivery. They have been in the Mojave desert for the past few years.

dan
dan
1 month ago
Reply to  The Big Man

Was a good deal. Better that then pay more money for planes that need to be built.

dan
dan
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

Ukrainian.

Cam
Cam
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

Ukrainian planes more like.

dan
dan
1 month ago
Reply to  Herodotus

Designed and built by Ukrainians. lol

Herodotus
1 month ago
Reply to  dan

Why is that funny?

DaveyB
DaveyB
1 month ago
Reply to  Herodotus

Check, how the planes ended up in a private firm.

HF
HF
1 month ago
Reply to  Herodotus

Given the current state of relations and the fact that Russia ‘proper’ relied on the industry & infrastructure of the UKraine as an integral part of its defence industry it could be viewed as ironic rather than funny.

Cam
Cam
1 month ago
Reply to  HF

And Russia was needing a new transport aircraft and the AN-70 turbofan was chosen and to be jointly funded by Russia and Ukraine but after the Ukrainians openly stated in 2004 they wanted to join NATO Russian funds dried up and a multiple hundred order was shelved! So Russia just upgraded their il-76mf aircraft. But Antanov got the Chinese onboard, and even the Germans and other Western European nations were considering the AN-70 turbofan instead of the a400, I think the UK reviewer it also. And it was actually better in some respects than the a400 some reports state. Anyway… Read more »

Harold
Harold
1 month ago

I note with interest that a recent opinion poll conducted by Panelbase reveals 55% supporting Scottish independence and a simultaneous poll conducted by Savanta ComRes shows 54% supporting Scottish independence. With the Scottish elections in 2021 looking to be a massive endorsement from the SNP, Westminster will find themselves unable to refuse another referendum and the more they do, the more support for independence will grow. We witness significant military expenditure in Scotland and it will be fascinating to see how it will all be deconstructed once the inevitable occurs during the United Kingdom’s twilight years.

dave12
dave12
1 month ago
Reply to  Harold

Good luck in trying to make the Scottish economy work with 6 million population depending on whisky sale’s and tourism , and not using the pound as your currency lol!!

Harold
Harold
1 month ago
Reply to  dave12

Something similar was written in the Times newspaper of January, 1959 discusing the future of Malta. By 1964, it achieved independence and has never looked back. Indeed, the Irish side of my family relate similar things said of Ireland before it achieved its freedom in 1922. It too has never looked back. Every union of countries has its ultimate end, Yugoslavia, Czechoslovakia, the empire and so on. The UK is now nearing its end. It will be a fascinating sight.

HF
HF
1 month ago
Reply to  Harold

Actually Malta wanted to become part of the UK proper and left in a fit of pique when they couldn’t. As for never looked back it’s in a hell of a mess, I’m sorry to say.

Airborne
Airborne
1 month ago
Reply to  HF

Spot on! Lovely Island great people, now a complete shambles!

HF
HF
1 month ago
Reply to  Airborne

The former PM has been interviewed by the police over the murder of the journalist.

Will
Will
1 month ago
Reply to  Harold

Malta, the most corruptly led country in the EU.

Patrick
Patrick
1 month ago
Reply to  Harold

The United States is a union of republics, is that doomed for failure?

Cam
Cam
1 month ago
Reply to  dave12

Whiskey isn’t all scotland makes dave!! We have shortbread and kilts…😁

Johnny
Johnny
1 month ago
Reply to  Cam

And don’t forget the warships!!

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
1 month ago
Reply to  Cam

Deep fried chocolate confectionery!

Herodotus
1 month ago
Reply to  Cam

‘Glen Sannox’ lavatory cleanser!

Cam
Cam
1 month ago
Reply to  dave12

On a sereous note Though lots of huge British company’s (yes British not English) company’s are also partly scottish. How the hell will we be able to divide them up! It’ll be dam near impossible…

RobW
RobW
1 month ago
Reply to  Harold

Do you think HMG will give the go ahead for another referendum? I can’t see that happening as BJ will not want to go down in history as the PM in charge when the UK broke up. Support for Indy may well be high now but that can change. When the pandemic is over, Brexit has been resolved, and we are looking back in 4 or 5 years from now it may well be the case that support for Indy levels off at the 40% to 45% mark again. Much depends on the ability of the pro Union parties to… Read more »

Andrew r
Andrew r
1 month ago
Reply to  Harold

So if the stroppy jocks get their way and get independence will this newly constructed building have to be rebuilt in England or Wales?

Meirion X
Meirion X
1 month ago
Reply to  Andrew r

Lossiemouth could easily become a Sovereign base area.
Which stays in the UK.
And supplied by sea and air, if necessary.

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  Meirion X

That is a bad solution, as sooner or later we will just have another falklands/gib issue over the area with scotland. Plus there is no way that the SNP would allow it, as it would give the rUK access to Scottish oil.

Meirion X
Meirion X
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

SBA is working well in Cyprus!
The same will apply if Scotland became independent.

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  Meirion X

Its working because Cyprus is contested and so a friendly military presence helps. For something like this to work, there has to be something in it for both sides.

Cam
Cam
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

How about lossie protecting scottish airspace…

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  Cam

They know we would do that anyway, like we do for Ireland for the free and it can be done from bases in England.

Meirion X
Meirion X
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

Scotland would not be in a position to afford to run Typhoon’s or Tempests, nor P8’s, just like lreland,
The Northern approachs will be exposed to attack!

Derek
Derek
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

Government finances are an interesting algorithm. If the Scots leave the Union and what’s left of the UK still has low cost borrowing – then a total borrowing figure of circa £3 trillion, which then becomes 3.1 trillion in order to absolutely secure a fully fitted out and secure nuclear submarine base in England – roughly equates to a simple household decision akin to “should I spend £3000 on a smart 4K TV or should I spend £3100 on one that is fitted over my fireplace by the supplier”. Of itself, a decision you would like NOT to have to… Read more »

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  Harold

@Harold Stats like this are misleading, as currently there is only the SNP campaigning and so there isn’t an organised voice for the Union. If there was another vote, that voice would appear and balance to the debate would be added (i am sure both sides would lie /mislead just like both sides did with brexit), so once both sides have stated their arguments would it stay 55/54? The main sticking point last time was the SNP’s refusal to confirm what would happen with the currency and realistically if the SNP wants to rejoin the EU then it would be… Read more »

dan
dan
1 month ago

Looks like the designers of the simulator forgot to take into account how it would be transported. lol

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago

I think it was this thing that flew over me outside the pub on final approach into Farnborough in the late 80s. Good Lord, how does it fly.

Ian M
Ian M
1 month ago

Physics? 🙂

DaveyB
DaveyB
1 month ago

Just don’t look to closely when you get up close to it! Or if you have to travel in one especially don’t look at the flying control cables that run from front to back in the hold.

peter french
peter french
1 month ago

The Antonov quote” one of the few other aircraft able to do this” , i,m interested in what others , none I can think of

RobW
RobW
1 month ago
Reply to  peter french

Galaxy perhaps?

What will replace the Antonovs I wonder? Probably nothing unless the US military require it as only they could afford to develop a new plane of that size with so few expected orders.

Andrew r
Andrew r
1 month ago
Reply to  RobW

Antanov has been toying with the idea of updating the 124 with new materials and Western avionics and engines.

Pete
Pete
1 month ago
Reply to  peter french

AN225 perhaps

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago

Off-topic, but none the less interesting!

21 AUGUST 2020

“Reaction Engines and Rolls-Royce partner on high-speed aircraft propulsion”

https://www.janes.com/defence-news/news-detail/reaction-engines-and-rolls-royce-partner-on-high-speed-aircraft-propulsion

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

“RAF sets out hypersonic weapons and propulsion plans
by William Lloyd

The UK Royal Air Force (RAF) has outlined near-term plans for the development of hypersonic weapon and propulsion technologies for its current and future fleets of combat aircraft.”

https://www.janes.com/defence-news/news-detail/raf-sets-out-hypersonic-weapons-and-propulsion-plans

DaveyB
DaveyB
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

Yep, read that Janes article. Rolls-Royce have been a big investor in Reaction Engines over the last 3 years. Hopefully in the next few years we will start to see the dividends.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  DaveyB

Fingers crossed!

It was interesting to note how they intend to include this technology into Typhoon.

RobW
RobW
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

As a test bed for Tempest I’d imagine, much the same way HMS Richmond has become a testing platform for the T26 propulsion system. Nice to see a UK company developing sovereign tech.

Daveyb
Daveyb
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

A bit more about the Rolls-Royce/Reaction Engines partnership.

https://www.defensenews.com/global/europe/2020/08/21/rolls-royce-backs-hypersonic-power-specialist-reaction-engines-with-new-investment/

It’s interesting to see which aircraft image they’ve posted with the partnership announcement.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  Daveyb

Many thanks for the link, my understanding is Tempest will be designed around this technology with a spin-off for Typhoon using Mach 5+ air to air missiles.

What interests me is, what is the maximum speed allowed for Typhoons current airframe and if increased performance could be achieved from 0 to Mach 2 using this technology if it is unable to withstand higher speeds?

Equally, would there be fuel-saving advantages to this as well?

Meirion X
Meirion X
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

I found some info on virtual testing of the Tempest concept fighter, and of 3D printing of results of virtual wind tunnel tests.

https://www.key.aero/article/wind-tunnel-tests-reveal-tempests-digital-design

There is the possibility that these test could speed up the Tempest project?

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  Meirion X

Very interesting. I would expect to see a final design by 2022 and a prototype flying by 2025 if the engine technology has matured enough by then.

No doubt they will be holding off on a few of the things we could expect to see such as this as an example.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=okAC069Cahw

Daveyb
Daveyb
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

I really like the Magma project. It uses blown flight controls which have been known about since the days of the Buccaneer. The Buc’ was primarily designed for low level high speed attack. Therefore, it required wings with a small area, to reduce buffeting. However only having a small wing meant your take-off and landing runs were long. To get round this problem they used blown flaps to give it a shorter take-off and landing performance. The blown flaps were driven by the air bleed off from the first stage compressor and was controlled by a series of valves. It… Read more »

Daveyb
Daveyb
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

Would Typhoon be fully armed or clean? If fully armed all the extras hanging below the wings and from the centre body will add a lot more drag as you try to go faster. It’s not just for stealth that the Raptor, Su57 etc have internal bomb bays. I will try to answer the question without resorting to formulae or writing a paper on the subject – however! The basic shape of Typhoon conforms to the area rule but not the fineness rule so is quite draggy, as the main body is quite short versus the wing area and there… Read more »

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  Daveyb

Many thanks for taking the time to explain this in some detail! As I suspected and mentioned above, it will be the missiles that reach speeds in the region of Mach5+ rather than the aircraft themselves. With thrust vectoring added to Typhoon (which could have been fitted 10yrs ago) and the EJ200 engine fitted with Reaction Engines Intercoolers, we could end up with a Mach2.5 aircraft capable of reaching far higher altitudes for a fraction of the cost of the F22. Adding LERX would greatly improve role rates along with conformal fuel tanks would keep Typhoon way ahead of the… Read more »

Daveyb
Daveyb
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

Yes, definitely against anything Russia can throw at us. China is an unknown quantity though. The J20 and J31 being their newest designs. The Typhoon should still remain above these for a number of reasons. The first is that China’s fighter engines are based on copies of Russian engines, they haven’t figured out the metallurgy yet, so are underpowered and unreliable (worse than the Russian originals). The second is that both aircraft use diverterless inlets, i.e. bumps to control the boundary flow into the engine. These are great, as they aren’t mechanical so nothing to go wrong. The issue with… Read more »

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  Daveyb

I think both China and Russia realise that they cannot compete with the west when it comes to technology advancements but allow for this in the numbers they produce compared to the UK and quite possibly Europe.

Herodotus
1 month ago

On another note: I see that Appledore shipyard is to reopen under new ownership…an interesting bid by a certain company to curry favour with the dry stores RFA requirement coming up. Apologies if this has been mentioned on another thread!

Cam
Cam
1 month ago
Reply to  Herodotus

That’s great news!! A great name too, Harland and Wolf Appledore…

Cam
Cam
1 month ago

Harland and Wolfe Appledore, 🙂

Daveyb
Daveyb
1 month ago

Did anyone see the bit about cancelling Challenger 2 and Warrior in the Times. They stated that: “Military chiefs are reportedly looking at scrapping the UK’s fleet of tanks and instead focus on other capabilities such as cyber warfare.” However, they did not mention anything about the life extension program?

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  Daveyb

Cyber warfare if the greatest get out of jail card ever for politicians. They can announce massive cuts to the tangible military, and say its gone into cyber, a service where its hard or impossible, to see where the money is going or if its being spent at all.

The politicians can also just link to the Russian interference in the election as an excuse for cutting conventional military assets to invest is cyber.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  Daveyb

I wonder if the life extension program will include ADAPTIV – Cloak of Invisibility?

https://www.baesystems.com/en/feature/adativ-cloak-of-invisibility

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

A very futuristic looking tank by the way, maybe some of these instead!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jdHEcomIj-E

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Daveyb

We have had it with LPDs, we have had it with the RM, we have had it with the carriers. Now Tanks. Options leaked by services defending their patch. Lets just wait and see. If they cancelled WCSP and CH2 and instead, for example, doubled the size of RA with long range precision fires, bought more support helicopters, doubled the Apache order, made 3 all singing and dancing brigades of Boxers properly armed, and so on, you could accept it. As it is, if this speculation comes to pass it is cuts, pure and simple, not the capability choices HMG… Read more »

Christopher Allen
Christopher Allen
1 month ago
Reply to  Daveyb

Yes, it’s also on the bbc as well.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-53909087

This is horrific, next they’ll be coming up with nonsense like cutting the entire army because why would we, as an island nation, need one.

I will never vote Tory again if they go through with this, which given their historical obsession with defence cuts, I suspect they will.

Steve Martin
Steve Martin
1 month ago
Reply to  Daveyb

Today’s offering from the press is slashing F-35 numbers to 70 and spending the savings on the Tempest “wonder weapon”. I do so love defence review news cycles.

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve Martin

Like it or not, the perfect storm of brexit (huge upfront costs of replacing the stuff that was done in the EU with UK versions) and covid plus the huge hole in the defense budget, means that the public purse is empty and there is no chance that the armed forces will not take a massive cut in the defense review.

Herodotus
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

Yes Steve…..chickens coming home to roost!

Steve Martin
Steve Martin
1 month ago
Reply to  Herodotus

Behave. My post was about anything and everything being reported as potentially cut during a defence review.

I will respond with this; Covid-19 is also a huge factor with the associated contraction of the economy. Let’s not have our blinkers on.

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve Martin

Yeah sorry my post was more a general comment than specifically aimed at you. It’s the normal cycle of doom and gloom being leaked, so when the actual cuts gets announced they won’t look so bad. However, i do believe there will be some pretty significant cuts. My assumption is the albion’s will get cut, with a statement that they will be replaced by the much more versatile littoral strike ships (that excuse was already being built by the last defense minister). The fact that they will take a decade or so to get through the endless tenders etc, resulting… Read more »

Steve Martin
Steve Martin
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

It also seems as though I replied to Heredotus and not you with my post, oops. For me, I can’t see much changing with the F-35 buy, we are in the initial throes of a trade deal with the US (and yes this might all change with a new President). I don’t think we would risk upsetting a deal by reneging on some pretty firm commitments to buy 138. The MOD is sadly it’s own worst enemy at times like this with inflated costs, legacy programs from previous leadership and the seeming inability to change for the better. That coupled… Read more »