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Russia demonstrates new fighter jet

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posted on Jul, 11 2008 @ 10:38 AM
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The debate here between "Stealth good" versus "Stealth Bad" does not actually make a lot of sense. Why is there a problem with the development and integration of stealth characteristics into the F-22, or with its effectiveness? Does logic not dictate that interfering with and confounding another aircraft's primary detection method is desirable if you want to act in such a way that the bogey stops existing? Does previous experience with stealth aircraft (F-117 Nighthawk) not suggest that it seems to work? Do the tests of RAM and shape not produce practice combat results that point to their effectiveness? Does the acknowledgement, agreement with, and attempt to replicate stealth characteristics in aircraft manufactured elsewhere not imply that other countries & companies, as well, have faith in stealth?

That's a lot of questions. Straighten 'em out and tell me what you think the answers are
.




posted on Jul, 11 2008 @ 10:57 PM
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reply to post by Darkpr0
 


The reality is somewhat different than what you see on TV or even in a number of simulators.

The ATF program began back in the 1970s and finally got approval in the 80s and the contest 'rules' finalized. In 1992, the contract was awarded to Lockheed, and it wasn't until sometime in 2005 before we started seeing F-22s.

You have to remember that, essentially, the F-22 is 20 years old. Radars from 20 years ago are functionally similar, but the filtering capabilities are all together different.

Back in the 80s and early 90s, the computer technology was quite limited. Speed and accuracy of digital systems was just too low with comparison to analog systems. The radar returns were run through analog filters that simply phased out returns under a certain threshold before they were sent to digital filters for further filtering. This was because of memory restrictions and raw limits on computing power at the time. It made real-time digital filtering possible.

Recent advances in massive-scale integration have brought about the ability for the computational power of digital filtering systems on radars to take on increasingly more returns and filtering out noise. Similarly, advances in programming and computer architectures and their related mathematics have further improved the efficiency and accuracy of digital filtering methods.

All of this means that, in modern avionics, a return that is almost infinitely small can be analyzed to provide its angular velocity, altitude, etc - then be displayed as a valid return based on those attributes. Obviously, trees don't move at 800 knots, nor do birds, bugs, etc - so it's obviously a valid return.

Such capability didn't exist at the time of the ATF, F-117, B-2, etc. While those stealth characteristics do still help in eluding even these advanced radars - mostly at extreme range, their main advantage is eluding the terminal guidance phase of missiles - which are not as computationally endowed as other radars.

At this point, geometry of the aircraft begins to play a more significant role in the return signature than the material it is made of or the surface area exposed. Remember that a property of all moving magnetic fields (radios, radar, magnets, etc) is that they induce an electric current in all conducting materials that is 180 degrees out-of-phase with the source. That means... guess what... your plane becomes a giant antenna - so do all structures inside of it (assuming they are not shielded against EMF). That means stealth technology goes well beyond the skin of the aircraft, and goes to the internal structure, the way the internal components are shielded, etc. You could build an aircraft out of composite materials and have a larger RCS than a similar aircraft that had an aluminum or titanium-based airframe.

The F-22 and F-23 differed quite substantially on their geometry. The f-22 has a few parallel edges here and there, but is mostly a horribly disfigured F-15. The F-23 is built around two angles, - something around 35 degrees and 55 degrees (I would have to take measurements - I'm going off of what I remember). The aircraft is a collection of double-trapezoid geometries with nearly every edge being parallel to another (a major factor in induced returns).

The F-23 was a substantially smaller and more "slippery" return than the F-22 because of its design.

However, the advantage was not seen to be of any functional advantage. However, the market didn't exactly play in our favor. China has many highly capable fabrication labs for integrated circuits (computer chips) - most rivaling the capabilities here in America (though the Chinese have yet to actually recognize the full potential of many of their technologies - quality hasn't built their economy, quantity - cheap, raw quantity has).

The U.S. made their investment in stealth technology based on two main ideas - first, that radars would always have to filter out small radar returns, and second that control of digital processing components would be assured to contain the spread of the necessary capability for radars that could endanger stealth aircraft.

Obviously, both of those have been proven to be ill-fated ideas.

That doesn't mean that "stealth" is at all a worthless characteristic. Hitting something your missiles have difficulty seeing is ... well - difficult.

However, it means the face of "Stealth" must change. Radar, while being an important concern, is no longer the primary concern. Modern jamming, countermeasures, and passive reduction ("Stealth") technologies essentially ensure that any two aircraft will have to close to a "merger" before being able to score a kill. Optical and Infra-Red reduction methods are where the future of "Stealth" is.



posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 09:59 AM
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Originally posted by StellarX
Considering the prices involved ( even with lying thieving LM that will somehow find a way to double the cost) woudln't you rather want somewhere between 3-10 Su-35's instead of a F-22?

I know i would but what do i know any ways.


Stellar



Well, prices aside and capability-wise, wouldn't you really want both types in your pack of cards?

I surely would. And hence the requirement for F-15s et al in addition to the F-22 and similary the requirement of the PAK-FA in addition to Su30s, 35 s and what nots..

It just gives the theatre planner sooo many options and keeps the opponent totally confused.
IF you direct your force wholely towards a particular direction, may it be stealth , or stand-off missilier or WVR and close combat.

Because if it does, the the opponent gets a chance to create a very specific and highly appropriate counter.



posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 10:03 AM
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reply to post by Aim64C
 


Thanks for the post. Always good to read a perspective that is not discussed too often on topics that seem to have been flogged to death



posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 01:05 PM
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Originally posted by Darkpr0
The debate here between "Stealth good" versus "Stealth Bad" does not actually make a lot of sense.


And since that is not what i am debating i can understand how it would not make much since if viewed from such a perspective.


Why is there a problem with the development and integration of stealth characteristics into the F-22,


Because frontal aspect stealth, to say nothing of side, top and rear aspect stealth, against co-altitude high frequency tracking/engagement radars already result in design specifications that have numerous drawbacks in operational performance.


or with its effectiveness?


Because the comparative effectiveness has declined with the advent of modern data processing methods, if not just shear power, and has always been limited given the high cost normally associated ( rightly or corporate-extortion-type-wrongly) with such designs. If your stealth costs so much in terms of operational drawbacks ( prepared hangers, long inspection/maintenance down times) or you simply lack the industrial base to produce sufficient numbers of such complex machines you are losing the war with a similar sized enemy long before it even started.


Does logic not dictate that interfering with and confounding another aircraft's primary detection method is desirable if you want to act in such a way that the bogey stops existing?


That is exactly what logic dictates as engagement ranges are naturally very important in all forms of warfare. The problem is not in seeking a range advantage but in presuming that you should sacrifice so many other design/flight characteristics to achieve a ideal advantage. German Generals were not asking for more Tiger tanks ( massive range, great armor, high lethality) but asked for a Germanized copy of the exact machine that were providing them with the most headaches, the T-34. Since they knew that they had the tactical and operational acumen to beat the Russians man for man they knew they did not have to rely on 'wonder weapons' to gain it for them; if US war planners are concerned that American fighting men are not up to the task ( as Hitler apparently believed) the F-22 makes sense but ONLY in as much as it can be supplied in the same numbers of the plane who's role it is supposed to take over. As it's clear that the F-22 can not be produced in numbers required it basically means that the US will have to keep in service the F-15/F-16 fleets much longer to make up the obvious operational shortages.


Does previous experience with stealth aircraft (F-117 Nighthawk) not suggest that it seems to work?


It does not in my opinion prove much besides the fact that the USAF have not fought a enemy of similar quality and quantity since world war 2.


Do the tests of RAM and shape not produce practice combat results that point to their effectiveness?


Not when 1960's era ground tracking radars manage the tracking job without alteration....


Does the acknowledgement, agreement with, and attempt to replicate stealth characteristics in aircraft manufactured elsewhere not imply that other countries & companies, as well, have faith in stealth?


No one can afford to sit out completely for fear that they are missing something and stealth is not a BAD thing when it's one considerations of many. All modern aircraft are built with reduced RCS in mind but every countries air force will have to decide what sacrifices can or should be made in the hope that their planes can win by virtue of taking off, flying in the general direction of the enemy, and destroying them all without taking any risks; one can appreciate the fact that a leading power may attempt such and win despite the misplaced resources but smaller economies can rarely afford such risks.


That's a lot of questions. Straighten 'em out and tell me what you think the answers are
.


And they were mostly rhetorical, sorry.

Stellar

[edit on 12-7-2008 by StellarX]



posted on Jul, 12 2008 @ 05:22 PM
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Originally posted by Daedalus3
Well, prices aside and capability-wise, wouldn't you really want both types in your pack of cards?


Prices aside? Maybe that's a argument the USAF can make ( 450 BILLION DOLLARS, and it will very likely escalate by a hundred odd or more, for the JSF production/development run) but such insanity comes at the expense of a thousand state hospitals nation wide probably including operational costs for a few decades. I'm sorry but prices are NEVER aside and i don't see the point of bankrupting the very country the mostly brave and patriotic youth signs up to defend. If one looks at how the US treats it's veterans , or to be fair how most countries treat theirs, this overspecialization is probably not in the interest of saving lives out of benevolence and care.


That being said tiger tanks had highly favorable exchange ratios and were certainly not economically inefficient as such. The expense is certainly not the thing that invalidates a good design but i just don't see that the F-22 is worth THAT price.


I surely would. And hence the requirement for F-15s et al in addition to the F-22 and similary the requirement of the PAK-FA in addition to Su30s, 35 s and what nots..


iI am confident that the Pak-fa will in comparison be quite cheap and will not comparatively cost much more than a modern line Su-27 family fighter. Neither the Russians nor anyone else are going to invest so much effort for so few low observability features. That being said i am confident that the F-22 could have been produced for much much less if uniquely American 'production' methods where not being employed.


It just gives the theatre planner sooo many options and keeps the opponent totally confused.


Presuming that the opponent does not have well developed ground tracking infrastructure that may be the case but if they do F-22's can be tracked and fighters routed around them.


irect your force wholely towards a particular direction, may it be stealth , or stand-off missilier or WVR and close combat.


No one is suggesting a one dimensional defense ( that's why you have Sam's) but a 'blockade runner' plane such as the F-22 is clearly something only a nation with very aggressive intent requires. My singular point is that i would MUCH rather have focused my efforts on the development off a range of specialized stand off jammers and EW support aircraft that can stand the rigours of high speed fighter/strike support; EW is after all more and more efficient the closed you get to the threat radars/weapons. Such support aircraft will not only allow fighter planes to be optimized for high speed interception, support of strike aircraft or normal air dominance but will allow much older airframes and technologies to stay in use. In fact the real reason why the USAF has so much success is not because of it's superior fighter/strike aircraft but because they are so well supported with EW assets that enemy air forces never have enough information to properly plan it's defense.


Because if it does, the the opponent gets a chance to create a very specific and highly appropriate counter.


I think the problem here lies in the presumption that casualties should be avoided at ANY cost when i see such reasoning as foolish and proof of the fact that the American government don't soon plan to engage in wars where casualties can be legitimately explained. 'Counters' are useful in as much as they may allow a efficient return on investment but overspecialization in counters are as risky as very little specialization at all. I would much rather have a limited range of aircraft that flies round the clock, can be built in large numbers, be cheap to operate than have so few highly specialized aircraft that any deviation from pre war presumptions about roles and efficiency negates the over specialization.

Stellar

[edit on 12-7-2008 by StellarX]



posted on Jul, 13 2008 @ 01:40 AM
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Originally posted by StellarX
Prices aside? Maybe that's a argument the USAF can make ( 450 BILLION DOLLARS, and it will very likely escalate by a hundred odd or more, for the JSF production/development run) but such insanity comes at the expense of a thousand state hospitals nation wide probably including operational costs for a few decades. I'm sorry but prices are NEVER aside and i don't see the point of bankrupting the very country the mostly brave and patriotic youth signs up to defend. If one looks at how the US treats it's veterans , or to be fair how most countries treat theirs, this overspecialization is probably not in the interest of saving lives out of benevolence and care.


Yes, prices aside. And if you want to compare US health care and war veteran amenities with other countries (yes I mean Russia, India, China et al) then you do so at your own peril. In any case these matters seem irrelevant, except for the fact that the F-22/F-35 are very expensive a/c and the need to live up to that price tag.
Moreover if one were to investigate how the money 'saved' in the above mentioned countries is used then it would be quite revealing. I cannot speak for other countries, but I know one in which most of the money is siphened into personal accounts of fat slob politicians who's educational and intellectual quotient match that of a 5th grader. But like I said, that besides the point.
We've all got a different crate of apples and will have to deal with the nuances of the rotten ones.



That being said tiger tanks had highly favorable exchange ratios and were certainly not economically inefficient as such. The expense is certainly not the thing that invalidates a good design but i just don't see that the F-22 is worth THAT price.


Ah. Now thats relevant to the discussion. But I believe that is a subjective declaration. Lets get objective. Which areas could have been done cheaper/better? Some one said here that the design was not as relevant to the envisioned role as the F-23. Maybe. Anything else?
LPI Radar? Flight Datalink? weapons store? Could these have been done cheaper?

It seems that the PAK-FA may turn out to be comparable in price to the Typhoon even; We'll just have to wait and see if that equates to a operational advantage in the end.





iI am confident that the Pak-fa will in comparison be quite cheap and will not comparatively cost much more than a modern line Su-27 family fighter.Neither the Russians nor anyone else are going to invest so much effort for so few low observability features.


I think it will be considerably more expensive than the Su-30 line; around twice as much. And thats precisely why the Russians are wooing the Indian and Brazilian cash cows.

The inclusion of partners at this stage where technical input beyond intellectual farting is not needed, means only that the inclusion is funds' oriented.






Presuming that the opponent does not have well developed ground tracking infrastructure that may be the case but if they do F-22's can be tracked and fighters routed around them.


Yes, and you and I know that there are very few defenses in the world that would be able to have GCI direct air units to defend stealth penetration.



In fact the real reason why the USAF has so much success is not because of it's superior fighter/strike aircraft but because they are so well supported with EW assets that enemy air forces never have enough information to properly plan it's defense.


I completely agree there. And again, not many AFs in the world have comparable EW as well. Or if they do, then pardon my ignorance and educate me





I would much rather have a limited range of aircraft that flies round the clock, can be built in large numbers, be cheap to operate than have so few highly specialized aircraft that any deviation from pre war presumptions about roles and efficiency negates the over specialization.

Stellar


But such policies and strategies bear relevance only in large scale all out wars, invasions, campaigns intended for territory seizure, aerial dominance etc etc.
Conflicts of such a nature do not seem very probable in today's world for various reasons.
(and pardon me if I'm wrong again) but honestly, aren't you a strong supporter of such campaigns and the likes
? Just a personal question.



posted on Jul, 13 2008 @ 03:13 AM
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reply to post by Daedalus3
 


i can`t seem to find the link anymore - buts its on ats *somewhere* - but since rules of engagement are so tight then anything much beyond 15 miles is a no no - the israelies have allways closed to wvr to actually see what they are shooting at



posted on Jul, 13 2008 @ 03:25 AM
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reply to post by Aim64C
 


well i allways believed the best aircraft didn`t win - but there we go


i also believe the future in detection is LiDAR but very few seem to be looking at that approach

good post



posted on Jul, 13 2008 @ 03:41 AM
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I think the plane is pretty. so it the mig 47 with forward swept wings/

all that aside. I'm pretty damned sure the US knows every little thing there is to know about every mig including this one. It would get it's ass handed to it in a fight. we really don't know whats under the skin of the f-22.

We have dumped a lot more thought and resources into the F-22 than has been on any mig. and I bet the tech that it's got hiding under there is a decade ahead of anything the rest of the world has. it's not like we havent noticed all of russias toys and are building the f-22 to fight off crap from the 1980's

also we have access to all the migs we could ever want including their new ones, but they will never get access to whats under the skin of an f-22 unless one crashes where they could recover it. And getting compartmental info on the f-22's tech through spies won't help them either.

They only show us or let us know what they want us to know about the f-22.

But all that being said, the new mig is very nice. Very pretty. but I'll take a warthog (figuratively not the a10 which kicks ass too) ment to kill from the ground up over a gazelle that runs all pretty any day.

Watched a show on the discovery channel a while ago where some US pilots got to fly the russian migs in russia and a few soviet pilots got to fly the f-18
man when they both got back on the ground the soviets were very excited about their flights in the f-18. the americans werent t so ethusiastic about the migs, although they did tell the russians that their mig flew very nice.

this is an f-18 we're talking about not even the f-22.

It's on a whole other level and the migs and sukois or whatever aren't going to catch up anytime soon.



posted on Jul, 13 2008 @ 06:28 AM
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Originally posted by Harlequin
reply to post by Daedalus3
 


i can`t seem to find the link anymore - buts its on ats *somewhere* - but since rules of engagement are so tight then anything much beyond 15 miles is a no no - the Israelis have always closed to wvr to actually see what they are shooting at


I believe that is true w.r.t. to the 3 wars that Israel fought with Arab nations, and the BVR option was not available for them during most of those times IIRC.
In fact most kills should have been gun kills at the time.
During the 1973 war and after, I believe the kills were mostly Python-2, AIM-9D, AIM 9L, Python III and a couple Python IV.



posted on Jul, 13 2008 @ 06:34 AM
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Originally posted by BASSPLYR

also we have access to all the migs we could ever want including their new ones, but they will never ...


Plain and simple.. NO!
I don't know where you getting this from but please do share if you have some sources.




But all that being said, the new mig is very nice. Very pretty. but I'll take a warthog (figuratively not the a10 which kicks ass too) ment to kill from the ground up over a gazelle that runs all pretty any day.


I'd perhaps take warthog over a Su-24 maybe. But thats about it. I'd take a MiG-21 Bison over a warthog even. That is for aerial roles and not swing roles.




Watched a show on the discovery channel a while ago where some US pilots got to fly the russian migs in russia and a few soviet pilots got to fly the f-18
man when they both got back on the ground the soviets were very excited about their flights in the f-18. the americans werent t so ethusiastic about the migs, although they did tell the russians that their mig flew very nice.



I was not aware of any such exercise(s). Please share deatiled info.



posted on Jul, 13 2008 @ 09:38 AM
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Originally posted by Daedalus3
Yes, prices aside. And if you want to compare US health care and war veteran amenities with other countries (yes I mean Russia, India, China et al) then you do so at your own peril. In any case these matters seem irrelevant, except for the fact that the F-22/F-35 are very expensive a/c and the need to live up to that price tag.


Lets pretend then.



Moreover if one were to investigate how the money 'saved' in the above mentioned countries is used then it would be quite revealing. I cannot speak for other countries, but I know one in which most of the money is siphened into personal accounts of fat slob politicians who's educational and intellectual quotient match that of a 5th grader. But like I said, that besides the point.
We've all got a different crate of apples and will have to deal with the nuances of the rotten ones.


I am talking about democracies; what most Americans believe their country to be at least. To use the USSR or India as example is not fair but i can understand why people are drawn to comparing apple's and oranges...



Ah. Now thats relevant to the discussion. But I believe that is a subjective declaration. Lets get objective. Which areas could have been done cheaper/better? Some one said here that the design was not as relevant to the envisioned role as the F-23. Maybe. Anything else?
LPI Radar? Flight Datalink? weapons store? Could these have been done cheaper?


Non of those developments are related to the F-22 specifically; basically all of the things that makes the F-22 a good fighter could have been employed on a late generation F-15 ( or developments on it) and most things that led to the massive cost overruns, at least that's whats claimed, are thing that modern fighters can in my opinion do without. I know it's a still a broad generalization but maybe it's enough given my earlier statements about EW and general information warfare.


It seems that the PAK-FA may turn out to be comparable in price to the Typhoon even; We'll just have to wait and see if that equates to a operational advantage in the end.


Since the Russian cancelled the MFI program in 1997 due to unit costs escalating to 70 million USD i feel confident in stating the the Russian government is not interested in white elephants.
Considering the comparative very small size of the typhoon ( a good indication of cost, as thing go normally) the Mig 1.44 were a big modern fighter with the same attention to stealth as the Typhoon and a generous performance margin advantage for approaching half the price. Whatever the flaws of the modern Russian state they do seem to have good sense enough to cancel programs when it's not critical to national security and can not meet specifications. Since the current cost estimate for the pak-fa runs from 80 million onward i think we can safely say that the Russians are more open minded about unit costs now that they have gotten their economy on track.


iI think it will be considerably more expensive than the Su-30 line; around twice as much. And thats precisely why the Russians are wooing the Indian and Brazilian cash cows.


The Russians have all the money they require to build these planes en-mass but have instead chosen to allocate funds to naval, strategic missile forces and regular forces choosing apparently to involve China and others in aircraft development. It is my opinion that these are just measures to hand over technology without raising too much eyebrows much as the US has been known to do for it's allies. I looked around a bit and it looks like your right with a proposed price of around 80 million USD; assuming price escalation or delays it might be half as much again but i presume nothing near as serious as the F-22 overruns. I propose that we both stick around here for a few years and see what happens.




The inclusion of partners at this stage where technical input beyond intellectual farting is not needed, means only that the inclusion is funds' oriented.


But since the Russians are literally swimming in energy money that is not in my opinion required either. As i said above i am fairly confident that this is politically driven and a technology exchange enabling local production of such models. The Chinese are already producing late generation Su-27's in relatively high volumes and it's not in my opinion too far fetched that the RF might eventually, in a decade or so, be buying serial produced aircraft from China instead of Russian producers.
That all being said according to agreement India and Brazil will share one third costs each which i suppose helps to sell it to the 'generals'.



Yes, and you and I know that there are very few defenses in the world that would be able to have GCI direct air units to defend stealth penetration.


My point being that any nation who have similar resource capabilities to the US could very easily devise such as system along former USSR lines. It's funny how when the British in part won due to GCI the Russians were mocked for trying to manage a battle involving thousands of aircraft from the ground.... Stealth penetration against ANY ground tracking facilities are largely impossible as F-22's and F-117's where designed with stealth against high altitude fighter radars and not low frequency ground varieties.


I completely agree there. And again, not many AFs in the world have comparable EW as well. Or if they do, then pardon my ignorance and educate me


The Israeli's; need a say more? Isn't it fun to agree? I wouldn't have counted the Russians out either as what they lacked in finesse they sure made up for in quantity and shear radar power. Any coordinated attacks into Russian airspace would have been problematic to say the least given how jammers are largely power dependent and more effective the closed you get to the source.


But such policies and strategies bear relevance only in large scale all out wars, invasions, campaigns intended for territory seizure, aerial dominance etc etc.


Which is what i am talking about? I am not sure why the USAF would want to build a F-22 like platform to invade iraq or other third world countries as it's clearly way beyond overkill.


Conflicts of such a nature do not seem very probable in today's world for various reasons.


You know what they said before world war one and two, right?


(and pardon me if I'm wrong again) but honestly, aren't you a strong supporter of such campaigns and the likes
? Just a personal question.


I am a armchair warrior, in almost all regards, and since i don't plan on taking part in such wars i am most certainly no advocate of them. What i do here i do because these things interests me but i am most certainly long, long past the point where i am so infatuated with war that i would actually consider taking part in anything but defending my county on home soil.

Hope that clarifies...

Stellar



posted on Jul, 13 2008 @ 02:18 PM
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reply to post by Harlequin
 


You mean LADAR? - Using lasers instead of radar beams?

It is the future - it's far more accurate than radar, lower-power, and very similar to existing systems in operation. It's also far lighter, more efficient, and is just more resistant to noise, jamming, interference, etc.

Though I think it will really be developed as a companion to radar. With radar, you can use the side-lobes to pull off some interesting stuff. It's also better to use as a general search medium (use LADAR to resolve anomalies and provide more accurate forms of BVR identification - as well as tracking and firing solutions).

Though LADAR would make for an almost "in-spoofable" missile... though the main restrictions on LADAR is manufacturing an antenna array that operates at ultraviolet frequencies. Though that will change before much longer.

In reply to the cost-effectiveness of Low-Observable technology

Alright, first - let's straighten things up.

What many people do not understand about Mil-spec parts is what goes into manufacturing them. Civilian parts are given a certain sample size (randomly selected from the line) to be inspected for integrity. Mil-spec parts are 100% analyzed (and those processes are very costly).

For instance - my father is the plant manager of ABM Manufacturing in Sedalia, Missouri (part of Production Castings Companies) [this also means that those clever among you can figure out who I am - more power to you]. They handle aluminum-zinc alloys and have done mil-spec parts before. I am trying to remember if it was every shot (every time metal is injected into the mold under several tons of force) - but I don't think it was - but it was very often that the alloy content must be checked and must be within a certain tolerance (it must be analyzed by a third party), every part must be x-rayed, and all of that is extremely expensive.

On the other hand, the parts that make up your car undergo something less than a 1% analysis. Which is fine, because quality control is (here in America, at least) very good, and any problems in parts are usually caught on the line or discovered in assembly (the assembly machines are brutal as hell on those parts). Though failure on the assembly line is rather rare.

This happened to my father once. A part failed on the assembly line at an automobile assembly plant. From that point on - every one of those parts from that part, back, was suspect to failure and required inspection. The manufacturer of that part is responsible for any down-time of the assembly line due to part failure, and is responsible for inspection and replacement of any defect parts (at their own expense, of course - which is why my father advised the owner against contracting with automotive companies).

Turns out, in the injection process, parts of the metal were cooling before they were supposed to, causing a vortex that disrupted the molecular structure and weakened the part to the point that it could fail under the stress of being bolted to the rest of the assembly (again - those machines are brutal - screwing stuff down with, literally, hundreds of pounds of force or more). Wasn't fun having to inspect all of the parts, listen to the assembly plant send them a "A plane will be at so-and-so airport to pick up the good parts at [insert time], those parts will be on that plane and on their way here by [insert a time a few almost-reasonable moments later], or you will be charged $10000 every extra minute that plane must wait."

Beyond that, many of those mil-spec parts are rather low volume orders, or special-order. Unlike cars, which are made by the million and, literally, billions of spare parts/components for them - military components are made by the thousand, hundred, or even dozen. For some components (like waveguides and antennae for radars), corrosion limits the shelf-life of any spare parts. For others, like Lithium-Ion batteries, chemical structure limits the usefulness of spare parts (Lithium batteries break-down as they get older, pretty much regardless of their use).

You have a low-volume product that requires extreme amounts of quality control.... it's going to inflate the price exponentially (though they still don't pay $50,000 for a hammer - but that stuff goes to "black" projects).

Nothing is being skimmed off of the military's budget - anyone doing so would quickly be skinned alive by regional commanding officers, who are constantly checking in couches for additional funding.

Now, as for it's effectiveness in combat - the reason we still have our high-tech toys to play with is because we plan missions as if we we're using aircraft without "stealth" and "toys." We take as many precautions as we can to ensure the survival of the aircraft. Obviously, it works. We don't fly stealth aircraft right at a radar and say "you can't see me!" - because we know they can - because we can with 60s technology. Getting stuff to hit them is another mater, however. And that's what we use to our advantage.

The thing is that it is useful for "kicking down the door" and opening up areas to our more standard aircraft that can operate with less to restrict them.

Is it Cost-Effective? I think so. By time you take into consideration the emotional stress on crews who lose their pilots in Wild-Weasel missions and SEAD, the loss of manpower from that (as well as the loss of aircraft), etc - it is cost effective merely in the regards that it relieves stress on the crews, which reduces errors (potentially fatal), etc.

When you take into consideration America's military role and posture in the world, "Stealth" will always have a valuable role in our arsenal.

Though I do wish we had a little more focus on 'standard' home-defense aircraft than we seem to presently have... I think that will come back to bite us.

[edit on 13-7-2008 by Aim64C]



posted on Jul, 13 2008 @ 05:33 PM
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reply to post by Daedalus3
 


This is true. These days you can take a BVR shot if you meet the ROE, and with the quality and fidelity of Combat ID systems, radar, datalinking and intel feeds, the level of assurity that you are engaging a hostile target is much greater than it was even during Allied Force. And as I've mentioned in previous threads, an F-22 pilot is not going to go to the merge unless there is a great necessity to do so. It is too expensive a platform to risk giving an adversary even a sniff of a kill.



posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 05:39 AM
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reply to post by Willard856
 


Actually, it's highly unlikely that a BVR shot would score a kill. You would be looking at a less than 10% kill ratio.

The problem is multifold. First, the standard mode for the AMRAAM to use is a datalinked Semi-active-homing mode. Track-While-Scan mode enables the F-22 to give no indication to the target's RWR that he's been illuminated by a tracking radar. However, the Russians aren't stupid. They can detect the datalink, and it's safe to assume their jammers will start singing and jam the datalink. The F-22s fire control system will try and compensate and the missile will likely automatically switch into a passive homing mode to home in on the jamming signal - however, by time the missile realizes it's being jammed, and switches, the Su-35 will have had ample time to slip outside of its acquisition envelope - or slip outside of any possible interception arcs.

So - the only thing to do is fire the missile in "beam riding" mode (another form of semi-active homing) - where the target is illuminated by the host aircraft's radar and the missile intercepts the illuminated target.

However, this causes several problems. First - the target knows you've shot at it. It has several options at this point. It can try and jam you (which is harder to do), or it can turn tail, pour on the dinosaurs, and escape the missile. Now, it can do either of those and fire a missile in passive homing mode (homes in on your radar).

The F-22 is now at a disadvantage, as it has absolutely zero indication that it's been fired on (and the target is too far away to detect the IR plume of the missile). Normally, the radar would pick up this missile-like return, and inform the pilot of this important development. So, now we have our raptor shining a bright-ass tracking light around for everyone to see and a missile closing at a combined speed of over mach 4. I can create a missile in my garage capable of nailing that.

BVR first-strike is of no use against a technologically equivalent (or nearly so) opponent. Or - I should say "extreme BVR" is of no real use. The only viable option is to close within terminal-guidance range of whatever missile you are using and taking the shot there - where the missile can be a genuine "fire and forget."

However, we run into another problem for the raptors. They can't use their radar. If the use it - RWR picks them up and can give a bearing fix for the Su-35s well before you are within "kill" range. I'm not sure if Russia has export models of the missile (or how many are in the inventory of other countries), but one of their missiles uses an inertial guidance system (most accurate self-contained, self-reliant navigational system ever developed) and closes in on a location determined by the fire-control system (can be estimated from RWR interceptions or more accurately from a couple scans with TWS mode). Upon reaching that location, it activates a wide-angle IR or radar terminal guidance phase, and starts searching for the target - it finds it, and knocks it out of the sky.

No data link. No indication you've been fired on (aside from a radar return) - and by time you know it's found you, you have a second or less to react or you are dead. No time to pop countermeasures, and hardly time to jink.

The missile also takes off almost straight up into the air after separating from the aircraft - it is possible that the missile will elude detection even if the F-22's radar is on and scanning.

There are some tricks the U.S. uses to help minimize the effects of some of those things... but the Russians know about them and plan around them, too.

It's all far more tactical than Ace Combat. While I love that game series (they have some of the best musical scores... especially their briefing music.... if only we could get briefing music like that before missions...) - it's far from reality. The missiles don't even behave right.... they "chase after" the plane.... which is silly.... it's like throwing a rock - you throw the rock ahead of the target - you lead the target.... missiles do the same thing - sometimes taking off behind you to get the best angle on the target.

In short... the U.S. shot itself in the foot with missile technology, and failed to develop a missile that could take advantage of the Low-Observable characteristics of the ATF. Thus, they can expect a rather low kill ratio with their shiny golden bird. They'll be lucky if they don't lose a few young hot-shots to stupidity and failure to think about what they are doing. I can just see some 25 year old fighter jock thinking he's going to score a kill on this Su-35 by using SARH mode with constant illumination.... only to be vaporized by an R-77 / AA-12 Adder (AKA: "AMRAAMSKI") slamming through his canopy at a combined velocity of Mach 6+

The only reason the Raptor has so many kills in our wargames is because the entire concept is "once you are fired upon - you are dead" - there's a little bit of "wiggle room" in there - but not a whole lot. The reality is that the AMRAAM wouldn't perform nearly as well as we think it will. Furthermore, they will have to get pretty damned close to ensure a kill - which means a higher chance of being detected and the sooner you can have missiles on top of you and the less chance you have to be warned of it.



posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 06:38 AM
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1. How do the Russians jam datalink? How do they detect it?

2. TWS is as the name implies, allows the target to be 'tracked' while still scanning the airspace - it has little to do with stealth. What makes you think 4th generation AESA will be detected by RWR in STT?



posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 06:49 AM
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With all due respect Aim64C, I think I know one or two things about air combat. And not from a computer game...


Originally posted by Aim64C
reply to post by Willard856
 


Actually, it's highly unlikely that a BVR shot would score a kill. You would be looking at a less than 10% kill ratio.


Rubbish. Earlier generations of AMRAAM might have had some guidance issues, not so with the current generation. BVR shots are validated during exercises, and I can promise you that the kill ratio for BVR is much greater than 10%.


The problem is multifold. First, the standard mode for the AMRAAM to use is a datalinked Semi-active-homing mode. Track-While-Scan mode enables the F-22 to give no indication to the target's RWR that he's been illuminated by a tracking radar. However, the Russians aren't stupid. They can detect the datalink, and it's safe to assume their jammers will start singing and jam the datalink. The F-22s fire control system will try and compensate and the missile will likely automatically switch into a passive homing mode to home in on the jamming signal - however, by time the missile realizes it's being jammed, and switches, the Su-35 will have had ample time to slip outside of its acquisition envelope - or slip outside of any possible interception arcs.


Rubbish again. The AMRAAM is never semi-active. It uses data-link updates during mid-course guidance until it enters the terminal active phase. A semi-active missile is the AIM-7, or the AA-10.

How long does it take to enter HOJ? How does the the Su-35 magically "slip" outside the engagement envelope? If the shot was valid kinematically, the only thing the target can do is so totally confuse the seeker head that it misses. It won't "slip" outside the "interception arc" (whatever that is!).


So - the only thing to do is fire the missile in "beam riding" mode (another form of semi-active homing) - where the target is illuminated by the host aircraft's radar and the missile intercepts the illuminated target.

However, this causes several problems. First - the target knows you've shot at it. It has several options at this point. It can try and jam you (which is harder to do), or it can turn tail, pour on the dinosaurs, and escape the missile. Now, it can do either of those and fire a missile in passive homing mode (homes in on your radar).


Are you sure you know what an AMRAAM is? There is no beam-riding mode. Also, if you can point me in the direction of an effective passive radar homing air to air missile (or even surface to air missile), and then explain how it is effective against an AESA radar, I'd appreciate it.


The F-22 is now at a disadvantage, as it has absolutely zero indication that it's been fired on (and the target is too far away to detect the IR plume of the missile). Normally, the radar would pick up this missile-like return, and inform the pilot of this important development. So, now we have our raptor shining a bright-ass tracking light around for everyone to see and a missile closing at a combined speed of over mach 4. I can create a missile in my garage capable of nailing that.


Uh-huh. In your garage?


BVR first-strike is of no use against a technologically equivalent (or nearly so) opponent. Or - I should say "extreme BVR" is of no real use. The only viable option is to close within terminal-guidance range of whatever missile you are using and taking the shot there - where the missile can be a genuine "fire and forget."


Crap. First shot enables you to drive the fight. If you are on a winning timeline, and the adversary appreciates the capabilities of your missile, they have to react. They'll try to slow down the intercept to get their own missile within range, but if you take the shot in the right zone, and with effective mutual support (and the new tactical opportunities that AIM-120D offer), the SU-35 won't win against an F-22. Things become more interesting in 4 to 4.5 gen fight though.


However, we run into another problem for the raptors. They can't use their radar. If the use it - RWR picks them up and can give a bearing fix for the Su-35s well before you are within "kill" range. I'm not sure if Russia has export models of the missile (or how many are in the inventory of other countries), but one of their missiles uses an inertial guidance system (most accurate self-contained, self-reliant navigational system ever developed) and closes in on a location determined by the fire-control system (can be estimated from RWR interceptions or more accurately from a couple scans with TWS mode). Upon reaching that location, it activates a wide-angle IR or radar terminal guidance phase, and starts searching for the target - it finds it, and knocks it out of the sky.


Yeah, accurate until it misses a couple of updates, at which point it flies to totally the wrong piece of sky. I know what you are talking about. It ain't as good as you make out.


It's all far more tactical than Ace Combat. While I love that game series (they have some of the best musical scores... especially their briefing music.... if only we could get briefing music like that before missions...) - it's far from reality. The missiles don't even behave right.... they "chase after" the plane.... which is silly.... it's like throwing a rock - you throw the rock ahead of the target - you lead the target.... missiles do the same thing - sometimes taking off behind you to get the best angle on the target.


Actually, it's called proportional navigation guidance logic, and it's a trajectory. Your throwing rock analogy is more akin to lead angle guidance (or even half-rectified lead angle that some older systems use so that they don't lose target lock). And missiles don't take off behind you. Even high off-boresight missiles like AIM-9X go forward first before manouevering.


In short... the U.S. shot itself in the foot with missile technology, and failed to develop a missile that could take advantage of the Low-Observable characteristics of the ATF. Thus, they can expect a rather low kill ratio with their shiny golden bird. They'll be lucky if they don't lose a few young hot-shots to stupidity and failure to think about what they are doing. I can just see some 25 year old fighter jock thinking he's going to score a kill on this Su-35 by using SARH mode with constant illumination.... only to be vaporized by an R-77 / AA-12 Adder (AKA: "AMRAAMSKI") slamming through his canopy at a combined velocity of Mach 6+


There isn't a single semi-active air to air missile integrated onto the F-22 (or the F-35 for that matter). Even us poor Aussies fly almost exclusively with an active/IR mix on our Hornets. And if you think that the AA-12 is in any way comparable to the AIM-120 in anything other than the fact that they are both active air to air missiles, then you really don't know anything about air combat.


The only reason the Raptor has so many kills in our wargames is because the entire concept is "once you are fired upon - you are dead" - there's a little bit of "wiggle room" in there - but not a whole lot. The reality is that the AMRAAM wouldn't perform nearly as well as we think it will. Furthermore, they will have to get pretty damned close to ensure a kill - which means a higher chance of being detected and the sooner you can have missiles on top of you and the less chance you have to be warned of it.


Guess you've never heard of kill rules, and how they are used in exercises. They certainly aren't "you shoot - they die". And if it's ok by you, I'll trust the modelling and sim results and user briefs over your AMRAAM assessment. After the rest of your post, I'm not sure if you are talking about the right missile...



posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 07:03 AM
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reply to post by C0bzz
 


If you send out a signal from your plane to the missile.... it can be picked up. It's also possible to jam it - though it is not entirely impossible.

Either way, you have a bearing on the launching aircraft.

Remember, RWR has evolved beyond a few coils of wire hooked up to broadband receivers and a simple computer.

In TWS, you're still emitting. You'll light up on their RWR as a search radar. Any pilot worth his weight in rations knows about TWS and depending upon how close the aircraft is when it registers on RWR, would assume they have been fired upon.

I also left out a very critical part of the scenario.

This is set up as the ATF was envisioned - we are on the offensive and have no external support.

The 35s would likely be working closely with AWACS - which would have little trouble picking a raptor up. It would also pick up any missiles once they were fired - even if they were fired in such a way as to not trigger the RWR of the target aircraft.

The advantage is, overwhelmingly, the Su-35s.

You need to close in fast and passive and jump right in their face (though not in a way that will get your head blown off).

The IR of the F-22 isn't that greatly reduced - and once you commit to the merger, you'll have to finish it or take an R-73 up the ass trying to get out. The F-23 wouldn't have had much problem with this, and could have come and gone as it pleased (within some reason). Being faster and far stealthier than the F-22 would pay off in this role as well.



posted on Jul, 14 2008 @ 07:11 AM
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reply to post by Aim64C
 


Good post.


A point I've often made is that the RCS of the F-22 is now essentially fixed, minor improvements can be made through updated RAM.



Meanwhile processing power for radar back ends doubles every 18 months. How long before even a relatively lightweight radar set can grab an F-22 out of the clutter?




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