Does the F really suck in air combat?
The RAND Corporation, Project Air Force, does work sponsored by the .. fired your weapons the simulation ends thus relieving the F of. In addition to simple analysis, the method has implications for the planning of dating projects and the assessment of the reliability of dates .. replacement of date, rand and cal with r-date, r-sim ulate and c _date .. Radiocarbon 35(1) F 35 rand simulation dating. The F's inferiority became glaringly obvious five years ago in a computer simulation run by John Stillion and Harold Scott Perdue, .
Assessing JSF Air Combat Capabilities
Air Force F flying over Kosovo from being located, tracked and shot down using an out-of-date Soviet radar and surface-to-air missile system. In the nearly two decades since, that incident has been studied in depth not only by the U. Of course, radar is not the only way to locate and target an aircraft.
Several nations, particularly the Russians, have excellent passive infrared search and tracking systemsthat can locate and target enemy aircraft with great precision — sometimes using lasers to measure exact distances, but without needing radar. The F is as visible as any other aircraft its size. Other critics have been even harsher. How did the F go from its conception as the most technologically advanced, do-it-all military aircraft in the world to a virtual turkey?
Over the decades-long effort to meet a real military need for better aircraft, the F program is the result of the merging or combination of several other separate and diverse projects into a set of requirements for an airplane that is trying to be everything to everybody. In combat the difference between winning and losing is often not very great. With second place all too often meaning death, the Pentagon seeks to provide warriors with the best possible equipment.
The best tools are those that are tailor-made to address specific missions and types of combat. Seeking to accomplish more tasks with less moneydefense planners looked for ways to economize.
For a fighter airplane, funding decisions become a balancing act of procuring not just the best aircraft possible, but enough of them to make an effective force. Where trade-offs have to happen, designers of most multi-role fighters emphasize aerial combat strength, reducing air-to-ground capabilities.
They have made the plane an inelegant jack-of-all-trades, but master of none — at great expense, both in the past and, apparently, well into the future.
I believe the F program should be immediately cancelled; the technologies and systems developed for it should be used in more up-to-date and cost-effective aircraft designs.
Specifically, the F should be replaced with a series of new designs targeted toward the specific mission requirements of the individual branches of the armed forces, in lieu of a single aircraft design trying to be everything to everyone. These realities are also key factors which have determined the design foci in the Russian Sukhoi Flanker family of fighters, especially the most recent variants.
The Flankers are built to excel in close combat, exploiting the refined aerodynamic design of the aircraft, thrust vectoring capability, and high thrust to combat weight ratio.
The notion that air combat will be wholly confined to Beyond Visual Range combat presupposes that an adversary will agree to play this game, even if it is not to their advantage. Real adversaries do not play in this fashion, and never have. The notion that an aircraft with unspectacular aerodynamic performance, very limited missile payload, and strongly compromised stealth, is at least half as good as the top tier F is remarkable by any measure.
More so since the Joint Strike Fighter lacks the supersonic cruise capability, radar peak power, subsonic and supersonic agility, and all aspect penetration orientated stealth capabilities of the larger F Even if we assume they are both equipped with identical missile types, the Flanker's superior agility and performance, and larger payload of missiles, would result in a decisive advantage over the Joint Strike Fighter.
In close combat the best the Joint Strike Fighter can achieve against any Flanker is parity, or a 1: This is as generous an assessment as is possible, given what we know about the Joint Strike Fighter's aerodynamic performance inferiority relative to the Flanker.
If the cited percent applies to a That is effectively claiming that it can almost match the F regardless of the fact that it lacks all of the F's additional performance, sensor and stealth capabilities, and it carries at best one half the missile payload of the F, and at worst one quarter. That a Joint Strike Fighter which is optimised for subsonic combat at medium to low altitudes can almost match the F in air combat exchange ratios against advanced Flankers like the SuBM or Su presents a clear non-sequitur.
Does the F-35 really suck in air combat?
The only way a simulation can produce this type of result is if the adversary aircraft are operated in a completely asymmetric environment, with pilots and operational planners who actively cooperate in getting themselves killed by: The only logical conclusion which can be drawn is that the claimed simulations which yielded the percent result did not represent the variants of the Flanker which the Joint Strike Fighter will have to confront in operational service, and did not account for known Russian doctrine and capabilities intended to support these fighters.
In other words, a Joint Strike Fighter with its supporting systems is pitted against a s threat without its supporting systems. At this time there are three discrete generations of the Flanker. The third generation of Flankers is exemplified by the SuBM and new production Su which expand on second generation features, but include high power-aperture phased array radars, advanced Infrared Search Track systems, advanced networking, nautical mile class "counter-ISR" missiles, and are fully digital Sukhoi.
Flanker capability is a moving target as the aircraft and its systems have rapidly evolved over the last two decades. The latter is depicted with some provision for growth. Block upgrades to the BARS to convert it into an Irbis E configuration will not present difficulties as the latter is an uprated derivative of the former.
In the simplest of terms, the Joint Strike Fighter is "outgunned" when confronting the Flanker in air combat. With two to possibly four missiles carried, the Joint Strike Fighter confronts an adversary armed with up to 12 missiles above, from www. While growth to four missiles remains planned, timelines have not been disclosed to date www.
The Joint Strike Fighter cannot achieve a high exchange ratio against an aircraft like the SuBM or Su for a number of very good reasons: Advances in Emitter Locating System technology, ground based and airborne, will provide an opponent with early warning and location of the Joint Strike Fighter if its frequency hopping APG radar is employed any other way than sporadically.
Lighting up the APG radar, lighting the afterburner, or launching a missile will give the Joint Strike Fighter's position away, no differently than a submarine launching a torpedo.
The advent of intra-flight and wide area networking capabilities in the Flanker permit much more flexible tactics against the Joint Strike Fighter, but also the use of non-radiating attacks where the Flanker prosecutes the engagement against the Joint Strike Fighter using only tracking data produced by sensors on the ground or other aircraft.
The advanced Flankers are built to cruise supersonically and that presents the lower performance Joint Strike Fighter with genuine challenges in positioning for a shot within the performance envelope of the AMRAAM missile. Once the Flanker detects the Joint Strike Fighter, Russian doctrine is to launch a salvo of two, three or four missiles, with a mix of different seeker types, to complicate defensive manoeuvre by the victim.
With its dependency on frequent afterburner use for high performance manoeuvres the Joint Strike Fighter is especially vulnerable to newer heatseeking missiles. An exhaust can be shielded and cooled, an afterburning exhaust plume cannot.
There have been significant technological advances in two metre band radar, passive emitter locating systems, infrared sensors and high power-aperture X-band phased array radars.
Australian Committee Hearing Reveals Details of F Performance in Wargame
Depicted an Su Flanker E KnAAPO Image This is a by-product of the systematic focus in Russian, former Soviet republic, and Chinese industry and research communities on developing technology to defeat the principal technological monopoly of the US military, that is, stealth.
Central to the Joint Strike Fighter's weaknesses in air combat is its limited payload of internally carried missiles, which simply compounds the problems arising from the Joint Strike Fighter's inferior aerodynamic performance relative to advanced Russian designed fighters.
The baseline for the Joint Strike Fighter is a payload of only two AIM missiles, with long term growth to four internal missiles feasible. The claim that six 'superpacked' missiles might be carried remains to be demonstrated.
The standard drone against which the AIM has been tested, including the latest AIMD prototypes, is the QF-4, which is not capable of replicating the performance of any Flanker variant, especially not second generation Flankers with thrust vectoring, and third generation Flankers with supersonic cruise and thrust vectoring US DoD.
The limited number of missiles carried exacerbates the problems arising from the limited ability of even later variants of the AIM to deal with high G manoeuvring targets, equipped with advanced DRFM jammers.
The AIM was conceived to defeat massed raids by Soviet era tactical strike aircraft, which had limited manoeuvre performance and poor defensive systems, and could thus be picked off easily. While the seeker and propulsion in the AIM have evolved considerably since the AIMA, its basic aerodynamic design and flight profile are not adequate to kill a high G manoeuvring late model Flanker. Claims that the AIM has killed manoeuvring targets in trials should be assessed carefully, since the US has no drone aircraft which can aerodynamically match the supercruising thrust vectoring and extremely agile late model Flanker.
While seeker improvements, and derivative AIM designs equipped with other seekers, such as derivatives of the AGM and AIM-9X designs, would overcome the susceptibility of the active radar seeker to DRFM jammer technology, they cannot overcome the inherent aerodynamic limitations of the AIM airframe design when confronting high G manoeuvring targets.
Where a missile's ability to kill a target is uncertain, the basic strategy to overcome this limitation is to fire salvoes of two, three or four missiles against a single target. The Russians have adopted this model with the later Flanker variants, typically carrying up to twelve Beyond Visual Range missiles. This permits six two round salvoes, four three round salvoes or three four round salvoes for an especially difficult target.