I'd be interested in seeing the same sort of analysis for Navy and Marine aircraft. It's not good to see an overall decline in MC rates. In the old days commanders got fired for such things, which of course led to "interesting" ways of counting such things.Spare parts aren't glamorous, but they are important. That old saw about logistics springs to mind.
Just like in the Navy, it isn't glamorous, but you aren't going anywhere, without the Fleet Train!
I'm willing to bet it looks worse. The MC numbers for surface ships is dismal and I've never seen so many 'Fail to Sail' notices in my life. In my days that was the kiss of death for a CO; telling higher command that he could not get underway was a very basic no no.
not a good comparison. apples and oranges are both from trees but different trees. USN and USMC aircraft differ in many ways from USAF aircraft not the least of which is the logistics tail they have. they are used differently, have unique capabilities and totally different logistical support. The Navy at sea consumes capability to be replenished when in port or at sea if possible. it costs much more to do then the way the USAF does it. The USAF is much closer to it's logistics tail at all times and if it needs more storage room for spares and fuel, it builds more storage buildings that don't have to float.structural strength, corrosion control, weapons capability, mean time between failure of components are all enhanced for remote shipboard use. apples and oranges. complexity breeds complex failures.
A Reaper as the most Mission Capable aircraft? Funny in USAF Comms anything less than 95% MC resulted in the reassignment of the commander and a lot of bad crap for everybody left behind. But we didn't have tail numbers so we had to be able to do our jobs.
Yep, in the olden days there was no excuse and no quarter was offered to those that higher command found wanting. One way or the other, it seemed to work although there were a lot more resources available back then and maybe we skated a little close to the boundaries.
reaper has very high MC rates because complexity breeds complex problems. it's a fairly simple machine. secure comms is the most complex thing on the aircraft. if you can fly a simulator, you can fly this.
the USAF goal was 33% of assets in some form of maintenance. so the numbers do look about the way they have historically been. those assets not mission capable for supply could be brought up to snuff during higher defense conditions with the release of war ready materials from combat ready storage. the USAF supply train for aircraft parts involved some really complex shenanigans back in my time. the air logistics centers did an awful lot of parts and subassemblies repairs, the quality of which was dependent on the field technicians being able to identify what the problem with the part was and clearly communicating that down stream to the folks attempting the component repairs. that didn't happen in a consistent fashion. the war ready material parts in storage were of higher quality; the part was ready to use and fully functional right out of the box. Some truly impressive hoops had to be jumped thru to access those parts in peacetime. the structure of the USAF Wing had a position called Deputy Commander, Maintenance, usually an O-6. USAF always had a spotlight on maintenance and the DCM was always right in the middle of it. Woe be the ignorant bastard who's asset was NMC and did not have a plan in effect to bring it back to mission capable status. The DCM would eat them alive.
I do recall the numbers for "first mission of the day on time take-off" was the make or break figures higher headquarters looked at like hawks peering at a prairie dog hole. like "fail to sail" it was the kiss of death for the nose wheels not to break ground on time.A difficult thing to accomplish with a airplane designed in 1937 at the behest of Howard Hughes with engineering by committee.
highly stress military equipment consumes fuel, parts, people and patience. it gets even worse when the machines are built by the lowest bidder.at any rate, that's the first lesson I learned in the USAF.