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Uber fast planes useless?

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posted on Sep, 23 2006 @ 08:42 PM
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I have question. With the advent of missiles propelled by scramjets will the ideas of superfast planes be scrapped? I mean, they probably would be useless because the idea was to make the planes too high and too fast for missiles, but the higher the plane is the better the new scramjet missiles gunna act. My other question is do you think that scramjet missiles could be used as ansat missiles. Imo, I think its possible, but its just something that peaked my interest the other day.




posted on Sep, 23 2006 @ 10:06 PM
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It depends what mission you want the aircraft to fly. Tactically IMO there is no need to make fighters faster than they are now, except maybe give them supercruise capability. However for a reconnaissance and bomber mission I can see uber speed coming in quite handy. First having a hypersonic platform means you can reach any point in the world within short notice, always important if you need to spy on or bomb something. Next if you give these platforms a really high cruise ceiling and an LO design along with hypersonic speed they will be VERY hard to intercept and or shoot down via missiles/aircraft (if not impossible, given that they are flown properly). In the case of the bomber if they can drop certain bombs or missiles from high height's and speeds they will extend the range of those munitions by 50+%. So depending on the role high speed and alt can be helpfull for both offensive and defensive purposes.

Something to also think about is giving future transport aircraft high speed capability, and I don't think I need to explain why that would be important.

[edit on 23-9-2006 by WestPoint23]



posted on Sep, 23 2006 @ 10:25 PM
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I can see the point for like high speed craft. But would they become useless with the inception of hypersonic missiles.



posted on Sep, 23 2006 @ 11:46 PM
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High end SAM systems already have hypersonic missiles and they have had them for some time now. But like I said it's the combination of high speed and alt combined with LO technology that's important.



posted on Sep, 24 2006 @ 10:02 AM
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It all depends on who is doing the shooting.

I still maintain that the 'best fighter' (SAM site, whatever) is going to be an Airbus or 747 with a massive COIL in it's nose. Go down to diode/FO levels and that 'fighter' can be a C-130 or Gulfstream (look at the G-550 where they've tripled the electrical generation capacities). And once you get to altitude, the range of these systems will be measured in HUNDREDS of miles.

At that point, missiles themselves may only be survivable as low altitude and/or throwaway _offensive_ assets. You won't want to be investing in 'payload boosters' which is effectively what manned strike systems come down to being.

That said, if you start to REALLY move (up to 100 miles and Mach 12-20), as a fractional orbital bombardment system, then you can probably sling bomb from half a hemisphere away and have your warheads skip across the atmosphere before playing RFG like a depressed trajectory ICBM MIRV. The sheer range will hide you against the earth halo from even an airborne asset and while it will certainly see the inbound KKVs; it is questionable as to whether it will be able to do much about them.

For most other instances and theaters...ainh. If it's available it will be used but economics will argue against new developments.

'Because it was there' (and they had nothing else that could reliably penetrate at the time), the Iraqis used their MiG-25RB as Peleng bombers during PGW-I to hit Iranian oil platforms from over 70nm away using specially configured FAB-500/M62 weapons. Yet to do so, they needed to strip the jet down (pull the recce gear I'm told) and fit a massive centerline tank and even then they were payload and profile limited because the microshocks setup by the bomb racks were putting 'dents' in the sides of the inlets.

Of course, today, you get much the same capability from a GBU-39 or other winged/powered SOM and you might only have to bring the jet up to Mach 1.2 and 40K to get there with _multiple aimpoints_. Such will be the likely route forward with the AASM, Spice and similar weapons now coming online.

The big deal is targeting.

That oil platform ain't goin' _nowhere_. So it can be hit by anything which can predetermine it's coordinates upwards of YEARS in advance.

While conversely, a fast moving jet _AIN'T STAYIN' LONG_.

Which means if you are trying to hit 'real' targets vice empty buildings; you have to be able to search for hours and hours, sanitizing great wide voids of empty battlespace. And if there is a combat jet in the hold cue. Great. If there isn't, you're screwed. Because by the time you get one to your neck of the woods, the TCT may have vanished or become untouchable.

In this a fast mover's chief advantages of penetrating defenses or using standoff munitions to lob-shot over them is largely invalidated. It may still be nice to be able to transit across a radius faster than other platforms but this is largely to solve the fatigue problems of the baby onboard.

If you go subsonic with a platform/profile designed to stay on station at X radius for hours and cheap enough to completely cover the regional area you are looking to dominate, pulling the Mutant Under Glass factor is a given and trading back for even just four SDBs means the difference between waiting for a manned asset to get there and gaining release authorization on the spot.

This is where 'get thar fustest with the mostest' should honestly be restated as something more akin to 'stay the longest with the cheapest'.

Simply because you can't do diddly with one platform looking down at one sensor swath 10 miles wide and then going home. But you can with 10 platforms that sweep 100 miles across. Or ten separate roadways or or or.

Because they will find the micro target sets. And they will NEED to put bombs on target before those threats scatter and vanish.

Under such conditions, penetration speed shouldn't be markedly lower than that which D1/R1 doctrine states for manned jets (Mach .85-1.2) but signature maintenance is more important than top end simply because a high VLO number, coupled with massively greater endurance, means you can prepenetrate ahead of anything with a stick wiggler attached. And again use stand off munitions to crutch up your total downrange values or TOF reaction times instead of relying on the airframe to do all the heavy lifting (50 million dollar jet, 500,000 dollar smart missile, which is easier to upgrade or restock?).


KPl.



posted on Sep, 24 2006 @ 03:58 PM
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Originally posted by WestPoint23
First having a hypersonic platform means you can reach any point in the world within short notice, always important if you need to spy on or bomb something. Next if you give these platforms a really high cruise ceiling and an LO design along with hypersonic speed they will be VERY hard to intercept and or shoot down via missiles/aircraft (if not impossible, given that they are flown properly).




Uhhh, any ideas on how to combine a VLO platform with hypersonic speed?


Bear in mind its something akin to trying to hide a shooting star.



posted on Sep, 24 2006 @ 10:16 PM
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Uhhh, any ideas on how to combine a VLO platform with hypersonic speed?


I was thinking more in terms of radar signature instead of IR, as that would be hard, perhaps even impossible to achieve. But then again does it matter if you are flying at Mach 10+ and 150,000+ Ft up?



posted on Sep, 24 2006 @ 10:44 PM
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Sure it does if theres somethign that flies at mach 11+ and 160000 feet. Not trying to be a douche, but whenever something awesome happens theyre right on its ass to one up it, and thats kind of like what the thread was about, are all these super fast planes useless when they build even faster missiles to intercept?



posted on Sep, 24 2006 @ 10:52 PM
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It's not practicl (now) to build an efficient SAM missile with that kind of speed and alt and still have long range. Plus raw numbers don't always tell the case, for example, no SR-71 was ever shot down despite the fact that there were missiles which were faster and which could fly higher.



posted on Sep, 25 2006 @ 03:40 AM
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DEWs are gonna change that whole situation though, you enter the engagement bubble, your dead - mach 20 doesn't compare to Mach 900,000 [approx the speed of light].


Intelgurl made a good point on a similar thread though, how exactly would a laser react with the plasma field generated by a hypersonic aircraft.
I made a guess at no effect, but god only knows how (in-)accurate that was!



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