What Interceptor or Fighter Can Stop the SR-71?

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posted on Oct, 10 2005 @ 05:08 PM
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Originally posted by Wembley

"then I will continue to believe it can hit minimum mach 3.5"

Believe all you like, but you still haven't said why you're not going to get smeared by the Russian SAMs which can deal with much faster threats even than that. And while it might be able to zoom to over 100k (which is a little dubious) it certainly couldn't cruise there; but again, that's no defence against modern missiles.

It was good for it's time, but we're not in the 70's anymore, and even then they never dared fly over Russia (and they did a lot of dangerous things!)

You mean the SR-71 never flew over Russia?

Then what the hell was the point of it?

Shattered OUT...




posted on Oct, 10 2005 @ 07:18 PM
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Originally posted by Wembley
Believe all you like, but you still haven't said why you're not going to get smeared by the Russian SAMs which can deal with much faster threats even than that.

Btw, the fastest recorded and published speed of the SR-71 was Mach 3.5.
The SR-71/A-12 is not going to be "smeared" by Russian SAMs.
The SR-71/A-12, in the 70s, flew so high and fast that the Russians were not able to track it or fire SAMs [SA-5s] at it. And if the Russians could track it in later years, the SR-71 still could not be successfully "smeared" by those vaunted Russian SAMs. Incidently, the North Koreans and Vietnamese were using the same SAMs and radar as Russia, being the Russians were supplying such equipment to them, often times manned by Russian crews and observers.


Over 1,000 attempts were made to shoot them down, but not a single plane was lost to enemy action or mechanical problems.

SR-71 Blackbird/Habu




And while it might be able to zoom to over 100k (which is a little dubious) it certainly couldn't cruise there; but again, that's no defence against modern missiles.

Oh to the contrary.
Even SAMS, as with radar, have range and altitude limits. All one has to do is stay out of or beyond that interception range and altitude. Speed and altitude...speed and altitude.




It was good for it's time, but we're not in the 70's anymore, and even then they never dared fly over Russia (and they did a lot of dangerous things!)

Accordingly, the SR-71 did make flights over the outer-most areas of Russia, as well as China, North Korea, Eastern Europe, etc. Other than that, over-flights of Russia itself had become immaterial with the advent of spy-satellites that could do the same job with no threat or chance to losing spy aircraft and/or their crew.


SR-71 Theaters of Operation Detachments and Operating Locations
30+ years and 3,500+ operational missions and not one aircraft shot down or damaged speaks for itself...





seekerof

[edit on 10-10-2005 by Seekerof]



posted on Oct, 10 2005 @ 10:28 PM
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Unsubstantiated claims (published or verbal) regarding SR-71 flights at Mach 3.5 and beyond are not valid. The design cruise speed of the SR-71, according to declassified performance data, was mach 3.2. Pilots and engineers from the program have stated that the aircraft would sometimes exceed 3.2 slightly if the air temperature was cool enough. In higher temperatures, the aircraft was unable to attain design cruise speed due to structural temperature limitations.

In 1991, NASA and Lockheed engineers studied the possibility of extending the Mach number capability of the SR-71. They examined the advantages and disadvantages of making the aircraft capable of flying at speeds from Mach 3.3 to as much as Mach 3.8 (the maximum potential of the J58 engine with an extensively modified inlet)>

They determined that an enlarged inlet with a water-injection system could provide a large thrust margin increase at Mach 3.5, but there were relatively low benefits and realtively high risks. There were thermal (structural) concerns at speeds of Mach 3.5 and above. Engine compressor inlet temperature was predicted to be marginal at Mach 3.4 and virtually all engine parameters were marginal at Mach 3.5 and unacceptable beyond that speed.

Ultimately the Mach extension modifications were not recommended due to the low benefit/cost ratio.



posted on Oct, 10 2005 @ 10:39 PM
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as posted by Shadowhawk
Unsubstantiated claims (published or verbal) regarding SR-71 flights at Mach 3.5 and beyond are not valid.

Actually, they are valid, and valid enough, being those sources have been experienced SR-71 pilots and ex-pilots, Shadowhawk.
The link I provided indicates as much, in relation to what you have said otherwise:


The fastest published speed of the SR is Mach 3.5. There are several factors that limit the speed of the SR, one is the shock waves generated by various parts of the plane, at around Mach 3.6- 3.8 the shock wave off the nose of the aircraft narrows enough to go into the engine, while there is the inlet spike (which slows the air to subsonic before it enters the engine), the shock wave bypasses the spike and causes the engine to unstart.
Second is the heat generated by the plane moving through the atmosphere, even titanium has it's limits, and the heat generated by the SR brings the fuselage to the brink. Just recently I found out that during a Lockheed Skunk Works study to see how much money and development it would take to get the SR to go faster than it's designed top speed 3.2- 3.5, the designers discovered (among other things) that the metal divider between the windshield was heating up so much above mach 3.5 that it was affecting the integrity of the windshield, and at that point they had stretched the glass technology to the max! So Mach 3.2 to a max of 3.5.

Now according to Richard Graham: "The design Mach number of the SR-71 is 3.2 Mach. When authorized by the Commander, speeds up to Mach 3.3 may be flown if the CIT limit of 427 degrees C. is not exceeded. I have heard of crews reaching 3.5 Mach inadvertently, but that is the absolute maximum I am aware of."

Blackbirds Myth & Fact


Other Blackbird/Habu sources:


The estimated maximum speed of the aircraft is Mach 3.2 and some sources say that it can accelerate to Mach 3.5.

SR-71.org
SR-71 + Mach 3.5





seekerof

[edit on 10-10-2005 by Seekerof]



posted on Oct, 11 2005 @ 11:15 AM
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Earlier you siad:
"I will continue to believe it can hit minimum Mach 3.5"

Now you quote Richard Graham: "The design Mach number of the SR-71 is 3.2 Mach. When authorized by the Commander, speeds up to Mach 3.3 may be flown if the CIT limit of 427 degrees C. is not exceeded. I have heard of crews reaching 3.5 Mach inadvertently, but that is the absolute maximum I am aware of."

This supports my contention and the documentation. Even with extensive modifications, Mach 3.5 and beyond is a bad place to be if you are piloting an SR-71.



posted on Oct, 11 2005 @ 01:33 PM
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"The SR-71/A-12, in the 70s, flew so high and fast that the Russians were not able to track it or fire SAMs [SA-5s] at it."

Did the Russians ever try, or others with export-grade kit? As you must know, the good stuff tended not to go abroad even when Russian techies did.
And they never did dare flying over Russia, which they certainly would have done if they could've got away with it.

" And if the Russians could track it in later years, the SR-71 still could not be successfully "smeared" by those vaunted Russian SAMs."

In the 80's the Baltic Express flights were picked up an hour in advance. Air defence networks in the 80's were another world - and they're much better now. I really don't see how it could avoid it. What are you suggesting?

The newer systems are explicity designed to take out very high, very fast, low-observable targets with a high success rate (rather a requirement for ABM work). I don't think the Russians would have any more trouble than the US equivalents dealing with a MiG-25.

And remember, the SR-71 range is limited and it has to turn - not good for overflying Russia.



posted on Oct, 11 2005 @ 03:47 PM
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Originally posted by Wembley
Did the Russians ever try, or others with export-grade kit? As you must know, the good stuff tended not to go abroad even when Russian techies did.

Wembley?

Are you actually reading my comments?
Are you actually reading those links provided, as well?
Did the Russians even try?
Let this be your guide or you can opt to hit the links I provided:


Over 1,000 attempts were made to shoot them down, but not a single plane was lost to enemy action or mechanical problems.





And they never did dare flying over Russia, which they certainly would have done if they could've got away with it.

They did dare, and were successful in doing so.
The SR-71 never made an over-flight of the entirety of Russia; it did over-flights, as indicated in my last post to this topic. In case you missed it, I provided a link detailing what was over-flown, etc. Here is a simplistic image, again, as was provided showing those over-flights of regions of Russian controlled air-space:





In the 80's the Baltic Express flights were picked up an hour in advance. Air defence networks in the 80's were another world - and they're much better now. I really don't see how it could avoid it. What are you suggesting?

I am suggesting what you should already know and admit: that though the Russians could detect and track the SR-71 in the 80s, that Russia was not able to down one aircraft. You see, detecting and observing and SR-71 is totally different than actually having to shoot one down.




The newer systems are explicity designed to take out very high, very fast, low-observable targets with a high success rate (rather a requirement for ABM work). I don't think the Russians would have any more trouble than the US equivalents dealing with a MiG-25.

That may be so, but again attempts were made by the Russians to bring SR-71s down, to no avail, despite those high altitude SAMs or air-to-air missiles. Again, not a single SR-71 was brought down. Now knowing how the Russians made such a big deal out of shooting down a U-2, bring down an SR-71 would have been the real deal, now wouldn't it? I am quite sure that the Russians made multiples of attempts to bring an SR-71 down. The headlines alone would have far surpassed those of the downing of a lowly U-2.




And remember, the SR-71 range is limited and it has to turn - not good for overflying Russia.

As I originally indicated, the SR-71 had no need to over-fly the entirety of Russia. US spy satellites could do it more efficiently and effectively. The image provided shows the areas of Russian over-flights, as well as other regions.







seekerof



posted on Oct, 11 2005 @ 09:15 PM
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Wembley, the range of the SR-71 was a little over 2000 miles, whats Russia, 6000 miles wide, ya, I think i can make it. Thats why they didnt fly right over it. Plus, they didnt have to, the SR-71 had side looking cameras. Fly into russia alittle and you can get all the photos youll ever need. And then, as seekerof said, they had satellites that could do it.

Train



posted on Oct, 12 2005 @ 05:45 AM
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Originally posted by Seekerof

Originally posted by Wembley


And they never did dare flying over Russia, which they certainly would have done if they could've got away with it.

They did dare, and were successful in doing so.
The SR-71 never made an over-flight of the entirety of Russia; it did over-flights, as indicated in my last post to this topic. In case you missed it, I provided a link detailing what was over-flown, etc. Here is a simplistic image, again, as was provided showing those over-flights of regions of Russian controlled air-space:


seekerof


The SR-71 Never flew over Main land Russia, but what about the CIA A-12's? Are you sure they never tried? After all, if the CIA pulled it off and got away with it, they certianlly aren't going to admit it!

Tim



posted on Oct, 12 2005 @ 08:26 AM
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I'm sitting here looking at it's specifications and they are QUITE IMPRESSIVE. The SR-71A had a cruising speed of Mach 3.2, with a maximum speed of Mach 3.3+ with a CIT limit of 427 degrees Celisuis.

Noteable speeds are as follows:

September 1, 1974 - At an altitude of 80,000 feet and speed in excess of 2,000 miles per hour. Exactly 1 hour 54 minutes and 56.4 seconds to reach London, England.

September 13, 1974 - From London to Los Angeles in a race with the sun. The 3 hour, 47 minute and 39 second flight established an initial speed record over the 5,447 statute mile route. Aerial refueling over said distance produced a lower ground speed of 1,435 miles per hour

27/28 July 1976: SR-71A sets speed and altitude records (Altitude in Horizontal Flight: 85,068.997 ft. and Speed Over a Straight Course: 2,193.167 mph).

What baffles me is why has the U2 still flying and the SR-71 has been retired? The given reason is that the technology was "1960s technology" and that it was obsolete. If I'm not mistaken, the U2 spyplane is 1950s technology or so they say. There is proof that Lockheed was ordered to destroy the tooling for the A-12, the YF-12, and the SR-71 back in 1968.



posted on Oct, 12 2005 @ 09:17 AM
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Originally posted by gimmefootball400
What baffles me is why has the U2 still flying and the SR-71 has been retired? The given reason is that the technology was "1960s technology" and that it was obsolete. If I'm not mistaken, the U2 spyplane is 1950s technology or so they say. There is proof that Lockheed was ordered to destroy the tooling for the A-12, the YF-12, and the SR-71 back in 1968.

Operational costs were incredible... something to the tune of $100,000 an hour, and that doesn't cover the cost of support such as the KC-135's required to refuel it.

Another more conspiracy minded theory is that the tests on a hypersonic air vehicle that caused "skyquakes" over california have been completed and there is now no need to have the SR in service to take the blame/take credit for these massive sonic booms.



posted on Oct, 12 2005 @ 09:31 AM
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As far as the U-2 operating costs, it's 6,000 per hour to fly, but there isn't much information beyond that out there to find. Anyone else that can find it good luck. heh. Total fuel capacity is about 3530 pounds of JP-8, not sure what the cost of JP-8 currently goes for, but it was about $1 a gallon three years ago, and it's 6.8 pounds to the gallon. So, about $520 for fuel per mission leg, plus cost of the KC-135 to carry support crew ahead of them, which is about $2.0 million a year/aircraft, so for 1 U-2/KC-135 pair you're probably looking at about $5-8 million/year to operate.

"The SR-71 costs about $200,000 for every mission, and this may have been one of the factors in the decision to retire the aircraft. Of course maintenance of a 30 year old airframe, with a very limited number of parts, and major parts not producible due to the absence of tooling (thanks again Mr. McNamara) all adds up to a complex maintenace problem"

This is something I put together in another thread. Anyone that can get more accurate figures please feel free to post them. This is just a rough guestimate based on the best information I could find on the net.

[edit on 10/12/2005 by Zaphod58]



posted on Oct, 12 2005 @ 01:42 PM
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" Fly into russia alittle and you can get all the photos youll ever need."

But how do you avoid being shot down?

SR-71 pilots were worried about SA-5s in the later days, and there's much scarier missiles around now.

In any case, I think you're a bit confused about the sideways pointing camera. How far do you think they can see?



posted on Oct, 12 2005 @ 04:11 PM
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Wembley, Im not sure which answer I can give you will suffice or satisfy your belief that a SA-5 could shoot down a SR-71. I believe we have fully agreed that as the tread title asked, which interceptor or fighter could stop the SR-71, we all say none as of yet declassified aircraft. Does the SA-5 have the targeting and acqusition systems to actaully make an attepmt at the Aircraft, meaning, once launched, can the SA-5 or other SAM's actually catch up to and then hit the 71 at closing speeds approaching mach 6? Im not sure they can. Does it have the computing ability to accurately select the collsion area? Can it adjust to the extremely high rate of closure. these were all problems for even the most advanced missiles.

Train



posted on Oct, 12 2005 @ 06:09 PM
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At 80,000 feet a side mounted camera can see a couple of hundred miles.



posted on Oct, 13 2005 @ 09:35 AM
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Train is right in being cautious about saying whether the SA-5 could intercept an SR-71.


The S-200 system armed with SA-5's and utilizing the SQUAT EYE P-15M radar or the SIDE NET PRV-11 radar could not detect, target and engage an SR-71 closing at over a half mile per second at 80,000 plus ft.

An S-200 system armed with SA-5's and utilizing the TALL KING P-14 or the BAR LOCK P-35/37 radars would definitely be able to fire on an SR-71 closing at over a half mile per second at 80,000 plus ft, if the radar could actually track the SR-71 with it's iron-ball RAM paint at such a distance.

The SA-5 has a range of around 200 miles and a max effective altitude of around 98,000 ft.

I do not think that even under the right conditions for the SA-5 it could be considered a "slam dunk" in downing an SR-71 at speed and altitude.

Another thought:
It occurs to me that if an F-15 Streak Eagle can go ballistic and attain an altitude of 103,000 ft then if the SR pilot knew he had an SA-5 closing in on him he could conceivably get that high even if his J-58 engines flamed out from lack of oxygen - thus getting above the effective range of the SA-5. (of course let's hope he could restart those J58's....)



posted on Oct, 13 2005 @ 09:43 AM
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From everything I've heard about the J-58, getting them relit was not always guaranteed to happen. There was a lot of prayer, and I think a few sacrifices of small furry animals involved.



posted on Oct, 13 2005 @ 02:41 PM
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Suggest you check out Ben Rich's book "Skunk Works" which makes it clear that the SA-5 was considered a threat to the SR-71 and the pilots were worried if they thought they might be getting in range of it. This apparently began to limit the scope of SR-71 ioperations when SA-5s started getting exported.
The pilots knew a bit about what their planes could do (100k ft?
) and I think they would be reasonable judges of what was dangerous.

I don't think the success rate would be that high - but how high would you like to risk? Losing even one SR-71 would have been an even bigger disaster than the Gary Powers debacle.



posted on Oct, 13 2005 @ 05:10 PM
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I was going to post this yesterday, but after writing about two paragraphs and having theory of plates and shells homework dealing with the galerkin method due the next day, i chose to erase.

Without going into too much depth, heres how you could destroy an SR-71 Blackbird.

If the chosen method were missiles, you would most definately need something like an ICBM to get the job done, let me explain. First of all, the method of using a jet with a missile strapped underneath just isnt logical becuase, remember, once the fighter is detected trying to make an intercept launch, by the time that fighter is even 30,000 feet high, the SR-71 is long gone, repeat, LONG GONE. The climb to altitude of even the fastest jet, which the f-22 will break that record by the way, still does not enable the jet to get close enough to lock on and traget the sr-71 even be within range of its missiles range. And for an interceptor to be able to launch a missile, which in itself would be pretty massive and heavy to be able to reach high mach numbers and covers hundreds of miles, the plane just doesnt have the power to climb fast enough with such weight to get within range.

Back to the ICBM. This is required because the way to do this would be to forget a head on colllison due to the extreme difficulty associated in doing so. The way to do this would be for the ICBM to launch and actually "catch" the 71 from behind. This requires tons of propellant and lots of burn time with extremely fast top end. I find this is the best way to take out a 71. After thinking about the 71's operating altitude and speed, it would be assummed that this ICBM interceptor would need a burn time at least 5 minutes and a top speed of say mach 6. Mathematicals details can be forgotten, this is just assumptions based on logical speeds of both. I hope you can see where Im going here.

If anyone cares to elaborate on this idea, feel free to do so, I would also love to hear more from intelgurl, you are one smart woman.

Train



posted on Oct, 13 2005 @ 05:47 PM
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Originally posted by BigTrain
I was going to post this yesterday, but after writing about two paragraphs and having theory of plates and shells homework dealing with the galerkin method due the next day, i chose to erase.

Without going into too much depth, heres how you could destroy an SR-71 Blackbird.

If the chosen method were missiles, you would most definately need something like an ICBM to get the job done, let me explain. First of all, the method of using a jet with a missile strapped underneath just isnt logical becuase, remember, once the fighter is detected trying to make an intercept launch, by the time that fighter is even 30,000 feet high, the SR-71 is long gone, repeat, LONG GONE. The climb to altitude of even the fastest jet, which the f-22 will break that record by the way, still does not enable the jet to get close enough to lock on and traget the sr-71 even be within range of its missiles range. And for an interceptor to be able to launch a missile, which in itself would be pretty massive and heavy to be able to reach high mach numbers and covers hundreds of miles, the plane just doesnt have the power to climb fast enough with such weight to get within range.

Back to the ICBM. This is required because the way to do this would be to forget a head on colllison due to the extreme difficulty associated in doing so. The way to do this would be for the ICBM to launch and actually "catch" the 71 from behind. This requires tons of propellant and lots of burn time with extremely fast top end. I find this is the best way to take out a 71. After thinking about the 71's operating altitude and speed, it would be assummed that this ICBM interceptor would need a burn time at least 5 minutes and a top speed of say mach 6. Mathematicals details can be forgotten, this is just assumptions based on logical speeds of both. I hope you can see where Im going here.

If anyone cares to elaborate on this idea, feel free to do so, I would also love to hear more from intelgurl, you are one smart woman.

Train

Fantasy is such a great thing is it not?

Yea, I don't think it would be so cost effective. I'm not saying the ICBM can't reach those speeds or altitude, I just don't think the guidance systems will be able to hack it, ICBMs aren't designed for surface to air interception. That's what we have SAMs for.

Shattered OUT...





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