Air Force

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Fighting in Megacities – Major John Spencer

  It is widely accepted that military forces increasingly are going to have to fight in vast, dense urban areas. US Army Major John Spencer from West Point’s Modern War Institute presents a compelling case for armies to prepare far better for this extraordinarily demanding environment. The issue also demands the serious attention of air [...]

By |February 13th, 2017|Air Force, Army, Capability Development, History|0 Comments

Australian Defence needs an Office of Robotics – Alan Stephens

  If, as the eminent strategist and military historian Edward Luttwak has argued, the people in our armed services define themselves through their ships, aeroplanes and tanks - a phenomenon he describes as “platformitis” - then the Australian Defence Force’s dominant culture is both obvious and near-impossible to change. As thing stand, for the next [...]

The economics of air power – Alan Stephens

  Economics is almost always a factor in warfare; in the case of advanced air power it is an imperative.   100 million-dollar baby: An RAAF F-35A In the one hundred years since air power was first applied systematically, only a small number of countries have been able to construct balanced, high-quality air [...]

By |January 30th, 2017|5th Generation Air Power, Air Force, History, Strategy, Technology|1 Comment

Dogfight: Start-ups take aim at errant drones – Jeremy Wagstaff & Swati Pandey

  A boom in consumer drone sales has spawned a counter-industry of start-ups aiming to stop drones flying where they shouldn't, by disabling them or knocking them out of the sky, report Jeremy Wagstaff and Swati Pandey of Reuters An eagle trained by the Netherlands police captures a drone inflight with its claws (photo [...]

Innovation versus “Platformitis” – Alan Stephens

   Are Western defence forces obsessed with platforms at the expense of technological innovation? According to a recent history of the US’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (Darpa), they are; furthermore, that reactionary mindset has hampered their development. Innovation or Platformitis? Australia's next submarine, 20 years and $50 billion away In 1945, the [...]

By |January 19th, 2017|Air Force, Army, Navy|0 Comments

“Ten Propositions Concerning Armed UAVs”: a review – Alan Stephens

Australia’s 2016 Defence White Paper detailed the government’s intention to acquire armed unmanned aircraft within the next decade. A paper titled A New Direction for Australian Air Power: Armed Unmanned Aircraft, commissioned by the chief of air force, Air Marshal Leo Davies, and written by Dr Peter Layton, examines the key issues surrounding this often [...]

By |December 19th, 2016|5th Generation Air Power, Air Force, Capability Development|5 Comments

Chicken and Egg: Progressing Air-Land Integration – Nathan Thompson

  One of the key ways of improving air-land integration in the Australian Defence Force is through the conduct of effective joint exercises. In this post, Squadron Nathan Thompson identifies some of the barriers to effective air-land integration and proposes a solution through the adaptation of existing Australian Army and Royal Australian Air Force's single-service [...]

By |December 14th, 2016|Air Force, Army|2 Comments

Of Self-Destructive Inertia and Turboencabulators: The Rationale for The Central Blue – Travis Hallen

  Today, 2nd December, marks three months since The Central Blue published its first post. Though the start has been modest (25 posts including this one), it has been successful. In the short period that the blog has been active we have received and published posts on a range of topics, from fiction to F-35s, written [...]

By |December 2nd, 2016|Air Force|3 Comments

A Day Without an ATO – Chris McInnes

  The Air Tasking Order (ATO) is the cornerstone of modern air power command and control: If you're not on the ATO, you don't fly. But perhaps we have become too wedded to a concept that can be overly restrictive and which can stifle individual initiative. Perhaps we need to loosen the couplings that currently bind [...]

By |November 18th, 2016|Air Force|2 Comments

Strategic imagination: why it matters to the Royal Australian Air Force – Oliver Jiang

  Strategic imagination is as important to the Royal Australian Air Force's future success as the innovation that lies at the heart of Plan JERICHO. In this post, Pilot Officer Oliver Jiang defines strategic imagination and explains the importance to developing problem conceptualisers as well as problem solvers. The inability of national intelligence agencies in the [...]

By |November 4th, 2016|Air Force, Strategy|7 Comments