LCA Tejas vs JF-17 Thunder

Discussion in 'Military Aviation' started by jackfoster220, May 8, 2010.

  1. jackfoster220

    jackfoster220 New Member

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    Who is better Hal Tejas or JF 17
     
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  3. sayareakd

    sayareakd Moderator Moderator

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    title of the thread should be "HAL Tejas Vs Chines JF 17".
     
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  4. SHASH2K2

    SHASH2K2 New Member

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    An alternative comparative analysis: LCA vs FC-1

    The aim of this essay is to explore the relative merits of the two essentially equivalent designs on a “single-system” basis. In doing so we must bear in mind that an aircraft is deployed as part of a wider warfighting system and therefore aircraft/weapons data, although a factor, is not in itself a sound basis for assessing combat capability. However, comparing aircraft performance, capabilities and suchlike, remains of great interest to the airpower enthusiast and amateur strategist.

    One problem with this type of analysis surrounds the validity of the data, mostly gleamed from the web. Patriots embellish capabilities, estimations are optimistic and most data is presented out of context. But by browsing widely and trying to home in on more credible sources, we hope not be too far off.

    It is also useful to compare them with equivalent aircraft worldwide, particularl Taiwan’s Ching Kuo fighter, South Korea’s proposed F-50 Golden Eagle (dedicated fighter variant of T-50/A-50) and Sweden’s superb Gripen aircraft. The latter is perhaps the benchmark, and as our analysis will show, is generally superior to either design.

    Executive overview
    Neither fighter is likely to be particularly outstanding. Whilst the LCA is generally credited with having superior performance and weapons systems, the FC-1 carries the price advantage. Neither fighter is likely reduce their respective airforce’s dependency on foreign systems for key combat capabilities as much as would have been hoped at their inception. In the case of both India and Pakistan, better solutions could have been obtained “off the self”, and indeed this is happening.

    BVR capability
    Both aircraft will have an up-to-date beyond visual range capability. Whilst nothing new for the IAF, it represents a quantum leap for Pakistan who currently makes do with Sparrows, it’s Mirage and Chinese fighter’s having no BVR capability whatsoever.

    Whilst we know that Pakistani FC-1s will probably be equipped with the SD-10 missile (even if it is not up to PAF standards, there seems little choice), more uncertainty surrounds the LCA’s fit. It is generally supposed that it will employ the Astra BVR missile currently in development. This is despite India already buying AA-10 Alamo, AA-12 Adder, Derby and MICA systems. Whilst the Astra is generally claimed to posess Adder like capabilities, it would be a great surprise if it actually lives up to such expectations. It will certainly be bigger and heavier, and probably less ‘deadly’ than either the Derby or MICA. This begs the question: why not simply switch to either Derby or MICA? It would probably be quicker and cheaper to use these highly credible foreign designs, and have less impact on aircraft performance.

    Having just assassinated the Astra, let me turn to the SD-10. In common with its India counterpart, it is notionally an advanced BVR missile. It probably features much Adder technology including the seeker, although speculation of anti-radiation seekers persists. It reportedly has a lock-on jam capability which is a good feature, although unremarkable today. Again it is bigger, heavier and almost certainly less ‘deadly’ than the likes of AMRAAM, Derby and MICA. Pakistan now has access to AMRAAM (albeit export models), so the SD-10 will not be all that even in PAF service.

    So what we have is lightweight fighters equipped with comparatively bulky BVR missiles…

    Both countries (Pakistan and India) ought to have learnt from Taiwan’s IDF (“Ching Kuo”) program. Similarly motivated by the effect of sanctions, the Taiwanese sought to develop an indigenous fighter and equip it with indigenous missiles analogous with AMRAAM. The Taiwanese missile is called the Skysword II. Although few specific performance details have been released, presumably because they are embarrassing, it is almost certainly less effective than AMRAAM. Like Pakistan and India, sanctions faded and Taiwan was able to purchase Western fighters/missiles (Pakistan buying F-16Cs with AMRAAM, India buying Mirage 2000-5s with MICA….). Taiwan jumped at the opportunity, cutting Ching Kuo production (greatly increasing effective unit cost) and brought both F16s with AMRAAM and Mirage 2000-5s with MICA. What is more, it wasn’t until several years after the introduction of the Ching Kuo that the Skysword II could be described as an operational reality.

    The only solace for the Ching Kuo progam is that at least the Skysword IIs are carried semi-recessed, thus reducing performance deterioration, something neither the FC-1 nor LCA has employed. Given the Ching Kuo’s somewhat lackluster performance to start with, it’s hardly worth partying about.

    By comparison, other lightweight fighters are way ahead; the F-50 will almost certainly carry AMRAAM and the Gripen can carry AMRAAM, MICA and R-Darter (South African BVR missile believed to borrow from Derby), not to mention the Meteor when it enters service. The ramjet powered Meteor is a further quantum leap of missile capability.

    Both the LCA and FC-1 are likely to be equipped with credible X-band pulse Doppler multi-mode radars. The LCA’s is indigenous, which may cause delays and cost overruns (what system doesn’t these days??? But crucially, the radar is still in development). Like the Astra program, India’s indigenous radar is generally reported optimistically, yet the end result seems questionable. The FC-1 has at least an off-the-shelf radar fit, presumed to be the Italian FIAR Grifo S-7 in PAF service. This series of radar is already produced in Pakistan for the J-7M aircraft. It was conceived as an upgrade replacement for baseline APG-67 which equips most export F-16s, so we can safely assume that it outperforms most models of APG-67. However, it is said to lack multi-target tracking/engagement capability, which obviously detracts from basic air-defense efficiency.

    Both radar systems are a generation behind the leading European, Russian and American systems now entering service. By comparison, the Gripen, notionally a lightweight fighter, is complimented for its network-centric avionics and represents a major capability step-up compared to either the LCA or FC-1.

    Dogfight capability
    The traditional strongpoint of the lightweight fighter was good old-fashioned WVR engagement. Both the LCA and FC-1 represent a performance improvement over the F-5E, Mig-21 and even F-16A generation of lightweight fighters. The FC-1 is credited with an +8.5g limit which is a shade behind the LCA’s +9g, implying that the LCA is probably more agile.

    The FC-1 in PAF service is likely to be equipped with AIM-9P Sidewinder and/or Chinese PL-9 missiles. The AIM-9P in particular is not particularly good by today’s standards, lacking many of the features considered standard for current generation fighters, such as helmet mounted sighting and high off-boresight capability. Idle speculation that the FC-1 will now be equipped with AIM-9X advanced WVR missiles now that the US has lifted sanctions seems unlikely in the initial operations of the FC-1 in PAF service. If AIM-9X is deployed, priority will surly go to the F-16Cs expected to enter service. The PL-9 is on paper a step above the AIM-9P with a high off-boresight capability, high agility, compatibility with helmet mounted sighting and suchlike. However, it does not appear to be a runaway success, since China’s flagship J-10 fighter is consistently seen carrying PL-8 missiles and Janes Defense Review has expressed the opinion that it is very short ranged.

    The LCA will probably be equipped with AA-11 Archer WVR missiles. Whilst not as cutting edge as they were when they first entered service, but nonetheless features helmet mounted sighting, high off-boresight lock-on and carries a distinct performance advantage over the AIM-9P and likely PL-9. If Israel sells the incredibly lethal Python 4 or 5 missiles to India, the LCA could well jump further ahead.

    Getting back to the AIM-9P issue, it is worth noting that most Gripens also carry similar Sidewinder models, whilst South Africa apparently deploys the promising A-Dartar. But Swedish Gripen’s a slated to get the next generation IRIS-T missile which is likely far more capable than either AIM-9P or PL-9. The F-50 looks set to get AIM-9X, though the Ching Kuo is stuck with the modest Skysword I Sidewinder copy.

    Both aircraft are equipped with the reliable but unremarkable twin GSh-23mm cannon.

    Weapons load
    On paper the LCA appears to have a marginally greater weapons load than the FC-1 although the round figure of 4000kg appears an estimate.

    Perhaps a better indicator is the thrust to weight ratio. The higher the figure, the greater the margin for bolting on various bits of kit, such as missiles, with (simplistically) less effect on performance. To calculate the thrust to weight ratio I’ve used the maximum thrust with afterburner and the normal take-off weight. Both come out with a 0.91 ratio. That’s not bad, but a far cry from the >1 (i.e. more thrust than weight) claimed by the F-15 and Su-27 families of aircraft. So, no prospect of impressive “cobra maneuvers” at airshows from these two.

    A key factor in translating on-paper thrust to weight ratios to actual combat performance is the likely weapons fit. If we assume that both aircraft will be deployed with two BVR missiles and 2 WVR missiles, we can calculate the weight of the typical in-combat fit (keeping the fuel load factor in the back of our minds):
    FC-1 = 2 x AIM-9P and 2 x SD-10 = 520kg
    LCA = 2 x AA-11 and 2 x Astra = 518kg
    Even-Stevens, although if the FC-1 carries the heavier PL-9 in place of the AIM-9P, the weight goes up noticeably to 590kg. By comparison, weapon loads of four Derby missiles weighs 484kg and four MICAs just 360kg.

    It should be noted that I used the GE F404-F2J3 turbofan rated at 18,097 lbst in my calculations for the LCA. The as yet unproven Kavari engine will supposedly develop 20,000 lbst. That would increase the thrust to weight ratio to close to that of the Gripen. However, 20,000 lbst is only an estimate, and without credence, I discounted it from my calculations.

    Cost
    Indigenous fighter programs are on the face of it expensive. Taiwan’s Ching Kuo was supposed to have a fly-away cost of $24m (US) in 1994. But with the limited production run (intended 420 down to 130), it is likely far higher than that. The LCA is often quoted at about $26m (US) but that seems grossly optimistic, as its detractors constantly remind us. The FC-1 apparently carries a $15m (US) price tag which again seems optimistic. However, Chinese fighters are generally quite cheap, so the FC-1 will almost certainly be significantly cheaper than the LCA. If China does purchase the FC-1 (as the JF-17), as now seems likely, then costs alt to be reduced, although whether Pakistan will benefit from this economy of scale is uncertain.

    However, the LCA as a potential export market, provided the Kavari engine materializes. The FC-1 could be exported by China, thus reducing unit cost, but its prospects are limited due to its Russian engine; Russia apparently attaching the condition that the FC-1 is not marketed against the similarly engined Mig-29 Fulcrum.

    But for about $30m (US) you can get Gripen (whether the Swedes would sell to either India or Pakistan now is open to debate).

    Conclusion..=i+_=..i2-=
     
  5. SHASH2K2

    SHASH2K2 New Member

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    Pakistan’s JF-17 Thunder – An Analysis

    By Mihir Shah
    for LiveFist

    On March 23 2007, two JF-17 “Thunder” fighters took to the skies for the first time in Pakistan as a part of the Pakistan Day celebrations. Touted to be Pakistan's first home made fighter, the JF-17 is expected to be the Pakistan Air Force's frontline fighter well into the future. With this article, I’ve made an attempt to examine the JF-17 in the Indo-Pak context. But first, some background information on the program.

    The program began in 1986 as the Super-7, when China signed a $550 million deal with Grumman to modernise its fleet of J-7 (MiG-21s manufactured in China under license) fighters. The United States ceased technical assistance following the Tiananmen Square massacre of 1989, and the project almost ground to a halt. However, Chengdu Aircraft Industry Corporation (CAC) managed to keep the program alive with its own resources, as the FC-1. The project got a new lease of life in 1999, when Pakistan and China signed an agreement to “jointly” develop and produce the FC-1 with both countries contributing 50% of the funds. Russia’s Mikoyan Aero-Science Production Group provided technical assistance. The FC-1 (Designated JF-17 “Thunder” by Pakistan) was supposed to be a lightweight all-weather multi-role fighter, which would replace Pakistan’s fleet of Mirage-III, F-7, and A-5 aircraft, whose safety record is going downhill by the day. The Pakistani version would sport a Western avionics suite, which included the Italian Galileo Avionica Grifo S7 radar, a variant of which is already in service with the Pakistan Air Force on its F-7 fighters. It would be powered by one Russian Klimov RD-93 turbofan. The “Aviation Week & Space Technology” magazine reported in November 2006 that “Pakistani officials expect the first contract for 16 aircraft (split equally with China) to be awarded next year, with deliveries as early as 2007. A full-rate production contract would follow around 2009. Initially, Pakistan will provide 58% of the parts, but that is supposed to increase gradually to 100%.” The overall Pakistani requirement is expected to be around 150 fighters.

    Although the Pakistanis tried to demonstrate with the Pakistan Day flypast that everything was tickety-boo, this is far from the truth. The Western avionics are nowhere to be seen, and supplier decisions do not appear to have been made. Radar integration, a challenging job under the best of circumstances, seems to have run into problems. The task is complicated in no small part by the lack of space available in the JF-17’s radome. It is now widely claimed that the first batch of Pakistani JF-17s will be equipped with Chinese avionics and radar. The weapons package is yet to be finalised. While China is expected to push its PL-9 dogfight missile and the yet untested SD-10 beyond visual range air to air missile, the South Africans have reportedly offered their A-Darter and T-Darter missiles. In January 2007, the head of the Russian Defence Ministry's International Cooperation Department, Colonel-General Anatoly Mazurkevich, announced that Russia had “denied China the right to supply its JF-17 fighter aircraft powered by Russian RD-93 engines to third countries, asking it to sign an end-user certificate for the engines”. In Indian circles, this was taken to be a total Russian denial. Sinodefence.com, a Chinese military website reports that while five RD-93s have been purchased to power the prototypes, an agreement on the further purchase and re-export of the engine is still pending. To make things worse, the Chinese have yet to make any firm commitments, and appear to have lost interest in inducting the FC-1, preferring the more capable J-10 instead.

    Given development time-frame and mission profile, comparisons between the JF-17 and India’s “Tejas” light combat aircraft are inevitable. But similarities, if any, are merely superficial. The Tejas, meant to replace India’s massive fleet of MiG-21s, is a wholly different project as far as technology is concerned. Its airframe, made of advanced carbon fibre composites, is light years ahead of the Thunder’s all-metal airframe. The ADA, HAL, and NAL invested considerable time, effort, and resources in its development, and came up with what is arguably one of the finest airframes in the world. The same goes for the Tejas’ aerodynamics which, because of the compound delta-wing, extensive wing-body blending, and low wing loading are superior to those of the Thunder, which has a more conventional layout along the lines of the F-16 and a rejected Soviet light fighter design. As far as flight dynamics and control go, the Tejas, with its relaxed static stability and quadruplex, full authority fly-by-wire digital flight control system, is far more advanced than the Thunder, which still features conventional controls (fly-by-wire exists only for pitch control). The Tejas then, is a state of the art combat aircraft which will be India’s first step towards self-reliance. Program wise, it is more comparable to the Eurofighter Typhoon and Dassault Rafale, considering not just the technology involved, but also the scope of the project. In the light of this argument, its longer timeline is hardly surprising. But the Thunder, despite Pakistan’s best efforts to package it as “indigenous”, is anything but. Pakistan’s contribution to the design and development of the project is close to nothing. Even today, it does not sport any Pakistani systems. It is at best a cheap and low-tech Chinese aircraft that Pakistan can mass produce. As Siva, a contributor on Bharat Rakshak points out, the JF-17 is more comparable to the HJT-36 Sitara intermediate jet trainer – since both have an all-metal airframe, conventional controls, and an externally sourced engine. And the Sitara was developed even faster than the Thunder.

    This is not to say that the JF-17 is a bad aircraft. It will serve a very important purpose by giving Pakistan valuable experience in fighter aircraft manufacturing. It will help Pakistan rid itself of dependence on American weapons. It will give the Pakistan Air Force a shot in the arm by beefing up numbers and providing it with decent beyond visual range combat capability. Dismissing it as “worthless” would be nothing short of stupid. My friend and aviation enthusiast Kartik sums it up beautifully: “If the Pakistanis integrate even a medium performance radar and use the SD-10 with it, it is a big threat to the Indian Air Force – just look at the MiG-21 Bison to see what an underestimated fighter can turn out to be. The Sukhoi Su-30K was also found to be a poor aircraft when the IAF first evaluated it, and then after all sweat and toil put into getting its avionics in place and the thrust vector controls, the Su-30MKI is a completely different beast! I somehow fear that the JF-17 shouldn’t prove to be a fighter that makes the Fulcrums, Mirages, Bisons almost on-par or just a little superior. Which is why the IAF needs a true fourth generation fighter to stay ahead – both airframe wise as well as avionics wise."
     
  6. SHASH2K2

    SHASH2K2 New Member

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    Pakistan ridicules India’s LCA, claims its JF-17 JV with China a success
    03 Nov 2009 8ak: A Pakistani web-site has trashed the indigenously developed LCA – Tejas in comparison to its China partnered JF-17, labelling it as the Last Chance Aircraft and described the ambitious project as a constant source of embarrassment for India. It alleges that the LCA was not an Indian creation, since the Hindustan Aeronautical Limited (HAL) and Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA) had sought help from France, Israel, British Aerospace and Lockheed Martin at each stage to develop the LCA, further accusing India of copying the designs of Multi-Mode Radar (MMR) from the Ericsson and Ferranti Defence Systems, who make such radars.

    In comparison to the Tejas, the web-site claims the JF-17 project launched in 1995, to be a success story, as the aircraft not only has a superior futuristic and advanced avionics system compared to the Tejas, but the tab for its production stands at US$500 million much below the US$2 billion of the yet to be inducted Tejas, whose development was initiated way back in 1983. Whereas, the Joint Pakistan-China venture reached its logical conclusion in a span of 11 years after it was mooted in 1995, when the JF-17 took to skies in March 2007, three years after its maiden flight in 2003.

    As of now 10 JF-17s have been successfully inducted into the Pakistan Air Force and the first JF-17 squadron is expected to be operational by this year end, whereas, the first Tejas would be inducted into the Indian Air Force (IAF) in 2010.

    However, contrary to the claims of the Pakistani web-site, Wing Commander Raghu Rajan (retd) of the IAF says, “It is true that we have taken a reasonable degree of external help, but then as the time has passed we have developed our own technology as well.” Elaborating on the issue, he says that to ridicule India for the delay would not be fair, as we were attempting to make an indigenous 4.5 generation combat aircraft for the first time so delays are expected. He substantiates his point by citing the Indian space program which nearly took 40 years to come of age, but now India is amongst the few elite nations to possess such advanced space technology.

    The wing commander further says that the JF-17 has a Russian engine, which the Pakistanis are simply assembling in the factories, a practice which the HAL has been undertaking for years now, as it has been producing the Russian Mig-21, Mig-27, Jaguar etc at its facility for a very long time.

    Before Pakistan calls India’s LCA project a failure, we need to look at certain parameters, which have been ignored by the Pakistani site. For starters, The Tejas is expected to cost around US$22 million and not the $31m quoted in the article. At this price it is much cheaper than any 4.5 generation fighter (The Times of India quoted the cost of French fighter Rafael to cost around Rs 270 crore – US$61 million). The Tejas also happens to be the smallest and lightest aircraft in the world, a fact not recognized by the site yet again. The site has also discounted the fact that the Tejas has a far more superior Beyond Visual Range (BVR) capability in comparison to the JF-17. The JF-17 is still considered a 3rd generation fighter whereas; the Tejas is a 4.5generation aircraft. Finally, it seems that China itself has not inducted the JF-17 in to its own fleet! Need we say more?
     
  7. SHASH2K2

    SHASH2K2 New Member

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    I would seriously like to know exactly what will happen if there is one to one fight between LCA and JF 17. I personally feel that LCA will have upper hand .
     
  8. Armand2REP

    Armand2REP CHINI EXPERT Veteran Member

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    Kind of hard to compare with a fighter still in development and the other not in a final configuration. One thing is for sure, LCA will have much better thrust to weight.
     
  9. SHASH2K2

    SHASH2K2 New Member

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    any idea about avionics and electronic warfare suites because thats what really matters.
     
  10. Agantrope

    Agantrope Senior Member Senior Member

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    SHASH2K2, it would be nice if you post the source for all the articles you have posted
     
  11. mattster

    mattster Respected Member Senior Member

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    It seems like everyone bullshits when it comes to stats - China, India, Pak.

    Calling Tejas a 4.5 generation aircraft is really a stretch. The Rafale and Eurofighter are 4.5.
    The gripen NG maybe.

    in my mind both the JF-17 and LCA are 3.5 gen. Both the JF-17 and LCA have airframes that look very basic.
     
  12. p2prada

    p2prada Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    Rafale, EF and Gripen are fully developed. LCA's avionics are nearly ready, but they haven't been installed and integrated completely.

    What's in your mind and what's on the ground are completely different. LCA's airframe is 4th generation and higher. It has been clearly designed keeping the future advances in mind. The LCA's aerodynamics may not compare to the European aircraft because we still haven't see what LCA is capable of in its full configuration. Nevertheless, the airframe is right up there with the best. It equals or even betters the European airframes in some respects.

    The LCA will have a way smaller RCS than the JF-17. More powerful engines from the F-414 and the Kaveri Mk2 with the M-88 core in the future which results in a higher T/W. A better payload capability due to a more modern airframe. An internal E/W suite called Mayawi is being developed by DARE and Elisra in India which will be light years ahead of anything PAF can field. A new AESA MMR is also being co-developed for the LCA Mk2 which will again be years ahead of what PAF can field.

    The superior EW suite and radar will give us the advantage in the WVR and BVR regimes too.
     
  13. sayareakd

    sayareakd Moderator Moderator

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    we have to look at the development flights and the production stage of both the aircraft. JF 17 is created world record to complete development from the first test flight to production within 1000 days. On the other hand LCA is still being tested. Waponisation of LCA is almost complete, whereas the JF-17 was inducted first and weaponsiation is underway, this fact speaks volumes of how things work in both the countries.

    one more thing for LCA to be inducted in small batch it require IOC then FOC whereas what is the status of JF 17 is still not known. PAF was in great hurry to induct the fighter for the reasons best known to them.
     
  14. sunnyv

    sunnyv Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    Useless thread , dont make it Pak-def forum . Where every thred is 1v1.
    Let the both machines get operational in respective Air-force and we can compare.
    Jf17 neither has IOC nor has FOC , there is no single record or video of Jf17 firing a BVR missile . They even are not sure of radar and Avionics on their planes .
    Its wrong to compare these two at this time.
     
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  15. SHASH2K2

    SHASH2K2 New Member

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    Jointly ****** 17 created a record to be completed in just 1000 day for induction becuase they donot have any thing called as innovativion in them. Body is copy of a russian jet and is full metal . engine is from Russians and avionics is so good then pakistanis are looking to upgrade it in very first year of operation.

    SO I am looking for the reasons that why it took 1000 days. It should not take more than 365 days for this .
     
  16. SHASH2K2

    SHASH2K2 New Member

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    wether you like or not its always 1vs 1 . entire purpose of building a machine is 1vs1. if there is no 1vs 1 then we will not have any defence forum. it wil be innovation forum. only thing we should care is not to make is a flame thread link pak defence forum.
    If you donot compare you cannot develop.
     
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  17. prabhug

    prabhug New Member

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    Hey
    Lets us first decide what 4.5 generation plane supposed to have in term of
    1.aerodynamics and control systems
    2.sensors suite(radar )
    3.weapon suite
    4.Electronics Warfare suite/POD
    5. what else?

    then we can compare how these two planes fare?
    Does JF-17 have FBW ?
    How reliable is RD-93 engine?
    So what is the radar/avionics on it?

    Cheers

    Prabhu.G
     
  18. Armand2REP

    Armand2REP CHINI EXPERT Veteran Member

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    Fly-by-wire and withstand 12G manuevers

    AESA on the higher end or high processing PESA array on the lower. 3rd generation IRST with long range laser range finder

    Wide assortment of PGM bombs and stand-off missiles as well as latest BVRAAM. Helmet mounted cueing system

    AESA solid-state jammers on the high end or DRFM pod jammers on the lower,

    T2W exceeding 1:1 with A2A loadout
     
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  19. prabhug

    prabhug New Member

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    So u mean FBW is for all axis and 12G means the plane capable of doing 12G maneuver or airframe capable of taking 12G


    So any other suggestions

    Cheers

    Prabhu.G
     
  20. Yusuf

    Yusuf GUARDIAN Administrator

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    12Gs? Would a pilot survive that? I think 9 is what i think they can take with their G suits on.
     
  21. p2prada

    p2prada Stars and Ambassadors Stars and Ambassadors

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    Mirage2000 pilots can stretch their aircraft to 13Gs when they spin at 270deg/sec.
    Not for Rookies.
     

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