The level of combat readiness of the French Air Force, by aircraft type
As the resource «opex360.com» in the material «Le taux de disponibilité des C-130H Hercules de l'armée de l'Air peine à décoller» traditionally during the last ten years, a deputy of the French National Assembly, François Cornu-Gentil sends requests to the French Ministry of Defense regarding the level of serviceability of aircraft equipment of the armed forces. By definition, an aircraft is considered to be serviceable, if it is able "within in less than six hours to perform a task, the corresponding functions defined performance characteristics, all based airfields." These serviceability are indicators to assess the state of the technique used.
Recent findings (sent ten months after the request) issues affect serviceability of different types of French Air Force aircraft, as well as the value of their services.
Thus, compared with the 2014 year, it may be noted that the cost of services rose to 95.7 million euros. This increase may seem insignificant, but the number of aircraft in combat units fell not very important, especially because of the write-off of fighter Dassault Mirage F.1. But this can be explained, perhaps, increased the intensity of aircraft in recent years. Besides, it has not been made public data on Airbus A400M Atlas.
Talking about specific types of aircraft, it is noted that the serviceability of 93 fighter aircraft Dassault Rafale B and C is relatively stable year to year (48.50% as against 47.70% in 2014). But at the same time, operating costs significantly increased from 226.4 to 343.90 million euros.
Status of fighters Dassault Mirage 2000 is difficult to assess as the percentage of serviceable 29 Mirage 2000N is classified information. However, with respect to this type of operation cost increased from 293.5 to 309.8 million euros to park cars (compared to 156 in the 2014 year).
On average, the level of the healthy Mirage2000 is maintained at the same level. But if we consider the matter in more detail, for the Mirage 2000D, which are widely used in the Middle East and North Africa, serviceability fell from 38.7% to 32.9%, and for Mirage 2000B - increased (45.6% and 41, 7% in 2014). For Mirage 2000C, these figures have remained stable - about 45%, and for the Mirage 2000-5 even increased slightly (39.1% compared to 37.5%).
Despite the decrease in operating costs 134 Alpha Jet training and combat aircraft from 160.4 million euro to 143.9 million euro), their serviceability increased.
In the case of military transport aircraft the situation is more alarming, despite the fact that the percentage of the remaining serviceable aircraft 24 Transall C-160 grew from 40.1% to 45.6%. But in 2014, it was in operation more aircrafts, while operating costs reached 121.1 million euros against 103 million euros in 2015. Despite the increase in costs in the amount of 8 million euros, a fleet of 27 aircraft CASA CN-235 showed a drop in the percentage of serviceable 3% in 2015 (up 52.3%). But it is two times better than that of 14 Lockheed C-130H (26,2%).
In 2014, the percentage of this type of aircraft serviceable reached 28.8%, and the park expenses were 40.8 million euros, 15 million more than in 2015. The situation should fundamentally improve soon - in 2016 signed a contract for the modernization of 14 C-130H, with eight of them must meet the requirements of special operations forces and their delivery will be carried out in 2019-2025.
Serviceability of the four airplanes AWACS E-3F AWACS in 2015 was only 36.35% against 46.7% a year earlier. Without a doubt, explain the decline in the modernization of the aircraft.
In respect of UAVs, in particular, the MQ-9 Reaper, serviceability is maintained at a high level - more than 86%, but the costs have gone up by 3.5 times - up to 8.5 million euros against 2.4 million euros. Harfang UAV passed small modernization, after which the serviceability rose to 62.85 from 60.7%, despite a decline in operating costs by almost € 2 million.
Finally, the maintenance of 14 aircraft-refueling C-135FR as always is very expensive, the amount of expenses increased by EUR 6.9 million. But the result is difficult to estimate - level of serviceability classified.