Nimrod retires from service today

Discussion in 'Modern' started by rochie, Mar 26, 2010.

  1. rochie

    rochie Well-Known Member

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  2. CharlesBronson

    CharlesBronson Well-Known Member

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    A question for the experten or modern aircrafts, was the Nimrod any better than the Orion P-3c in the maritime patrol role ?
     
  3. vikingBerserker

    vikingBerserker Well-Known Member

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    Another era has passed.
     
  4. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    Both were very similar with regards to bomb loads and weapons although some models of the Nimrod were armed with Sidewinders (which i always thought was silly). Both acoustic and and MAD sensors were similar and I think tactics were similar in the manner they were deployed. The Nimrod was always faster but that didn't mean much in performing ASW as its a matter of patrol duration and time on station. The P-3 could fly slower during a search and that was a big advantage.

    Nimrods later got air to air refueling which greatly enhanced their capability. The USN never needed that capability as there were many more P-3s available than Nimrods. Airframe maintenance would go to the P-3 from what I've been told.

    Although upgraded over the years I think the victor goes to the last man standing. The two competed against each other in ASW competitions and from what I remember the P-3 won many of them.

    The Nimrod was a worthy ASW platform, not necessary the best set up, but it did its job well. :salute:
     
  5. Waynos

    Waynos Active Member

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    #5 Waynos, Mar 29, 2010
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2010
    As far as I am informed the Nimrod was a better ASW *airframe* than the P-3 (at least for UK needs) but was more expensive, which may explain, in part, its lack of success in those competitions for exports. During the selection process for its replacement a UK built and updated P-3 was evaluated againt a similarly updated Nimrod and was found lacking. Of course the UK is a small country with a lot of coastline buying a few aircraft. Possibly a unique combination :)

    The Higher speed was a real advantage to the RAF as it could reach an objective in less time and then once there it would shut down two of its engines for extended time on station. No doubt this is only an advantage where fewer aircraft are available and so would not bother the US very much, but its worth noting when export customers only buy a handful of aircraft. So with the systems being the same this would basically leave local suitability, cost and politics as deciding factors so I don't think an inherent overall superiority for the P-3 can be deduced from these sales to be fair. Either way I suspect there wasn't that much between them in capability.

    Regarding the sidewinders - As I recall, Nimrods on patrol around the Falklands would frequently meet at quite close quarters with an Argentine 707 doing the same job for them, the sidewinders were fitted to discourage this, which they did. Once the armed Nimrod was deployed the 707 was never seen again. Job done. I wouldn't call that silly. It did lead to a rumour that the Nimrod v 707 was the' biggest dogfight in history', but it never actually happened.

    In terms of systems there was actually quite a lot of commonality between the P-3 and the Nimrod MR2 so there is nothing to choose there, though of course the Nimrod had the huge 'Lancaster-esque' bomb bay.

    Airframe maintenance is something I would know nothing about however so I can't offer an opinion there. If victory does indeed go to the last man standing then don't forget the Nimrod MRA.4 will be contemporary with the P-8 after the P-3 has gone.

    I am blown away that a NEW version is currently entering service of an airframe that first flew in its original form in the 1940's!! That seems surreal, and is a ready answer to those who describe the DH Comet design as a failure :)

    Here is a nice pic of a shiny new MR/A.4 to cheer up those sad at the passing of these old ladies. The real shame here is that Govt penny pinching has led to the tarnishing of the reputation of this fine aircraft and needless loss of life. But thats another story of course.

    [​IMG]
     
  6. red admiral

    red admiral Member

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    The reasons the Nimrod MR2 is being retired are mostly financial. The UK can live without SAR/ASW capability for a couple of years in order to save some money. Nimrod isn't particularly liked by the government after one exploded in Afghanistan (where most of them are being used) and gave them lots of bad press.

    Not much to choose between the Nimrod or Orion in the ASW role. Nimrod being developed to suit RAF requirements to surge large numbers of aircraft quickly into the North Atlantic for ASW operations. Nimrod has been fairly adaptable, most of the use coming from the reconnaissance function in recent years. Basically being used as a flying command post like the E-3. Can't forget the R1 SIGINT aircraft either. Also the rather interesting AEW.3 version. MRA4 is going to be around for years to come. Bill Gunston has written a book on the Nimrod recently called "The Centanarian Aircraft". 150 years of powered flight and Nimrod will have been around for 100 of those (in about 2050).
     
  7. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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    I think incomparing the two, the Nimrod had more of a recon and FCP ability where the P-3 favored ASW, anti shipping and recon.
     
  8. CharlesBronson

    CharlesBronson Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the replies guys :!:
     
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