Su-30 MKI

Discussion in 'Indian Air Force' started by LETHALFORCE, Feb 16, 2009.

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  1. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    [​IMG]

    Take the airframe of a latest generation Russian fighter like the Sukhoi Su-30, add some of the futuristic technologies developed for the next generation Russian fighter, use your own expertise in software and electronics and blend it with the best that the Western military electronics industry can offer - and what you get is the Su-30MKI, an aircraft which the Indian Air Force (IAF) likes to call its Air Dominance Fighter (ADF).

    [​IMG]

    The Su-30MKI has been officially inducted into IAF squadron service at the Lohegaon Air Base near Pune. The aircraft will constitute the IAF's main multi-role strike fighter force for many years to come. The event is significant as it was the first new-generation aircraft to receive the IAF insignia in over a decade. Also of considerable importance is that the fighter's avionics have been modified with a number of electronic components and sub-systems either developed in India or obtained from Western sources. In fact the "I" in the aircraft's designation stands for "Indian" meaning an India-specific model which is an improvement over the earlier Su-30MK.

    The Indian Air Force is among the most battle-ready forces in Asia. It has to be, with neighbourly relations threatening to degenerate into war at anytime. Even though the countries backed down from the brink of an armed conflict in 2002, there is no saying when things would become difficult again.

    As the key strike arm of the Indian defence forces and provider of air support to ground and sea operations, the IAF has a particularly critical role to play. This is further reinforced by the current global strategic perception of air power as the dominating factor in any conflict.

    The requirement, which eventually led to the Su-30MKI programme was formulated in the mid- 1990s, when the IAF perceived a need for a new multi-role fighter with superlative air superiority and ground attack capabilities to enhance its existing fleet of MiG-29s. Mirage 2000s, Jaguars and older MiGs. The service thus began negotiating with Russia, its long term supplier, for the Su-30 which was by then enthralling crowds at air shows if not exactly shooting down enemy fighters in combat. However, going by the experience of the IAF with avionics and other electronic gadgetry in its existing fleet of Russian-supplied aircraft and by the need to exceed the capability of the F-16s in Pakistan's possession, it was decided to customise the Su-30 with critical components designed as per Indian specifications.

    Another factor which prompted the IAF to go for an India specific model which was to be superior to any other existing Sukhoi version was the Chinese order for the Su-27 (designated J-11 by Beijing), also a multi-role aircraft but with somewhat less advanced features than the Indian version. As a result, the IAF ordered the MKI version by taking upon itself the responsibility of providing key electronic systems and components relating to weapons management, radar, and avionics. India then contacted suppliers in France and Israel for the joint development of these systems.

    In November 1996, following exhaustive contractual negotiations the Indian Government signed a deal worth US$1.8 billion with the Irkutsk Aircraft Production Association (IAPO, now renamed IRKUT Joint Stock Company or IAIA for short) covering the supply of two squadrons or 40 fighters, to be delivered in progressively more advanced and sophisticated configurations.

    In June 1997, the first batch of eight Su-30Ks (this being essentially an air superiority fighter version), were brought to India in order to allow IAF personnel to become familiar with the operation and maintenance of these new generation fighters.
    A second similar batch of ten aircraft followed in 1999. A relatively long delay then followed owing to India taking its time to finalise the requirements for the avionics and other systems for its customised version. The IAF-selected components were then incorporated into the assembly line at Irkutsk, the planes extensively tested, and finally two aircraft in the final MKI (a Russian acronym for Multirole, Commercial, Indian) version were flown to India).



    Chairman of HAL, N.R.Mohanty, who has just been conferred the Padma Shri, with model of the Su-30. HAL is tasked to manufacture 140 Su-30MKIs, its AL-31FP engines, avionics, systems and accessories of its Divisions, beginning 2004 and continuing for a decade thereafter.

    IRKUT is to complete delivery of 40 aircraft as per the original contract and then upgrade the early aircraft already delivered to India to the MKI configuration. Thereafter, Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) will manufacture about 140 additional Su-30MKIs in a licence manufacture agreement with Sukhoi. Sources say HAL is planning to invest the equivalent of $160 million in setting up a new assembly line. HAL has a "deep licence" to assemble the planes along with the AL-31FP TVC engines, but without the right of re-export to third partners. While the IAF is tight-lipped over the cost of individual aircraft to India, independent sources have put this at the equivalent of $33 million a piece with the license-manufactured versions working out to about $30 million each.

    The first India-assembled Su-30MKIs expected to roll out from the HAL production lines in late 2004. Deliveries were originally expected to continue until 2017 at the rate of about 10-12 aircraft a year (depending on the absorption capacity of the IAF), but a decision has recently been announced for an accelerated production run with the last aircraft to be delivered by 2014 at the latest.

    India will also use some of the technologies developed for the Sukhoi-30MKI for its own Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) project, which though facing considerable delays, is very much on track with at least two prototypes undergoing extensive testing. The LCA is expected to form the bulk of the IAF during the next decade and progressively replace the ageing MiG-21s.

    HAL will a1so manufacture the LCA and the experience with the Su-30 should come good especially in the assembly of avionics and other electronic components.

    The Su-3OMKI supersonic multi-role two-seat fighter is the first Russian combat aircraft ever to be designed in conformity with the requirements of a foreign customer. Most observers agree that the time taken by India in defining and developing
    the MKI version was rather well spent, as it took great pains to incorporate several technologies from the Su-37 technology demonstrator and mate it with the Su-30 airframe. These include:

    At the induction ceremony, the IAF could barely hide its excitement as was evident from an official statement released on the occasion: "...the Su-30MKI offers a comprehensive package that combines super manoeuverability with lethal firepower, making it an excellent instrument of deterrence as well as power projection at long ranges. Its state-of-the-art avionics suite, modern cockpit and integrated fire control system would ensure decisive response to any air opposition in the foreseeable future. In view of its ability to undertake a wide variety of missions, undeterred by any opposition, the aircraft can be aptly termed as an Air Dominance Fighter. This is the order-of-combat-aircraft that other combat aircraft in the world are measured against. Indeed, barring the F/A-22 for the USAF, there is not a fighter in the world that is in sum, better than the Su-30MKI today. The IAF is proud and grateful to the nation and the Ministry of Defence for having filled a void in its inventory so magnificently".



    An executive of a British defence firm said "the Indians deserve a lot more credit for the Su-30MKI than they have received. I doubt if it was possible for any other country to develop a super-hybrid taking the best of Russian and Western technology and they have done it quietly and within a reasonable timeframe". The Russians too have been more than generous in their praise of the MKI and some commentators from Moscow have given it a 2:1 advantage in weapons handling, target acquisition, and evasive characteristics over designs such as the Mirage 2000 and the F-15.

    Indian defence strategists look upon the Su-30MKI as more than just a fighter aircraft. Its long range, aerial refuelling capability and the ability to carry up to eight tonnes of payload (including a cruise missile) make this aircraft the principal instrument by which India will flex its muscles in South Asia and beyond. The thinking in India is that in the medium to long term, India will have to match China in firepower and also show the Americans that it is no pushover, and the Su-30MKI will be the strategic instrument of choice for these roles.

    In particular, India is well on its way to setting up a nuclear command and control system and the Su-30MKI will be an important component of this system. In the long-range bomber role it should serve as the main delivery platform for nuclear weapons, especially the sub-kiloton bombs tested during the 1998 Pokhran nuclear tests.
     
    ankur26888 likes this.
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  3. pyromaniac

    pyromaniac Founding Member

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    The IAF is looking good now...with the addition of atleast 126 new fighters the airforce will look very formidable indeed. Now, if only it didn't take so goddamn long for stuff to get done in India
     
  4. ZOOM

    ZOOM Founding Member

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    Pyromaniac, I don't understand what makes you to see any good in IAF, especially when IAF is suffering from dwindling number of squadrans.
     
  5. Blitz

    Blitz Founding Member

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    I think zoom is right on this there is a difference between the proposed and the reality, till the numbers match the proposed ones its only an excellent idea/state on paper.
    having said that recent indications point to things getting better sooner than one presumed it to be.
     
  6. rock45

    rock45 Founding Member/ RIP our friend

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    This is my first post I've always been a fan of dual purpose aircraft or platforms and had some questions about the MKI Flanker.

    1. Does India's AF have any plans on making a dedicated attack or strike squadron using MKI Flankers similar to how the USAF uses F-15E?

    2. Is there a list of proven weapons that have been tested and cleared to use on the MKI Flankers?

    3. Does India have a JDAM or Slam type weapon in their inventory?

    Thanks
     
  7. nitesh

    nitesh Mob Control Manager Stars and Ambassadors

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    Doesn't seems as of now 2 MKI are going to Russia for reconfiguration so that they can carry BrahMos missile. This should be operational by 2012. But still they will be performing all the duties. But yes some squadron can be given for maritime strike role.

    http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/IAF/Images/Eqpmt/Walkarounds/Su30MKI/
    http://www.acig.org/artman/publish/article_407.shtml
     
  8. rock45

    rock45 Founding Member/ RIP our friend

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    Weapons load

    Thanks nitesh for the links

    For such a powerful well rounded platform I must be honest I was expecting more it seems slightly limited in weapons choices.

    The BrahMos missile will be a huge boast but 2012 seems pretty far away.

    Are Russian LGB good is India pleased with their kits? Sorry for the basic question but with the Su-34 dragging, only a handful of Su-24 were upgraded, and most of Russia's Su-27 are basic fighter types, Russia isn't known for for the AG stuff.

    Russia's anti-ship missiles seem to get a good rep but to me like a lot of their weapons just not tested/battle proven.

    In my opinion Russia's own Flankers are not in the MKI class equipment wise nor in pilot training. I think India could bring the Flanker as a platform even further along and was wondering if India home grown arms industry had plans to maybe build something a little smaller then a BrahMos missile?
     
  9. Singh

    Singh Phat Cat Administrator

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    MKI are primarily used as air superiority fighters, post Brahmos ALCM being operational perhaps it is possible that a few MKIs will become dedicated strike craft (primarily maritime strike)
    Currently Jaguars, Mirage 2000, Floggers are fulfilling this role.

    all weapons in Russian air force arsenal are cleared for use in MKI. Additionally few other weapons such as Astra BVRAAM, Brahmos ALCM, Popeye Lite, (Nirbhay CM?) are being developed/tested/cleared for use on MKI.

    SLAM comparable Popeye Lite.
    JDAM comparable Griffin-3
    and CBU-105 too
     
  10. rock45

    rock45 Founding Member/ RIP our friend

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    Weapons

    Hi Singh
    Thanks for helping me out on the weapons that can be carried on the MKI.

    Indian testing or Russian testing? I sometime question Russian testing, PR releases, time tables, sometimes weapons and equipment never even make it to production.

    Popeye Lite> Does India have them currently?
    Griffin > I'll have to look up the not sure what it is
    CBU-105 > I'll have to look it up to refresh myself
     
  11. Singh

    Singh Phat Cat Administrator

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    you are hard to please :)

    Currently for strike purposes the very capable Jags are being fitted with Harpoons.
    Popeye lite, KH-31, KH-59, KH-35 are awesome missiles onboard MKI, Nirbhay ALCM? and future Standoff CM? being co-developed will have greater range.

    Litening-2 pods take care of their deficiencies ;) .. India is also testing Sudarshan kits


    Su-34, Su-24, Su-25,Mig-27,Tu-22M3, Tu-160 are excellent crafts for A2G role though Russian A2G arsenal is not as diverse as the Americans no doubt.

    This is debatable.. may be invincible will shed a light here
    SU 30MKI is heavily customised to Indian requirements.

    smaller why ? there are plenty of weapons with smaller range. India is developing Nirbhay CM(not sure of its ALCM version) and a Standoff CM with Israel these will have greater range.
     
  12. Singh

    Singh Phat Cat Administrator

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    All testing for MKI being done by India. MKI carries different pods from stock Flankers.

    Sengupta claims 200 are there.

    http://www.iai.co.il/Default.aspx?docID=16151&FolderID=16145&lang=en
    http://www.deagel.com/Bombs-and-Guidance-Kits/Griffin_a000960001.aspx

    its a cluster bomb, which will make mince meat of armour. It will be carried by M2K or Jag

    This video will say it all I guess
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ua3nLmE7Kow
     
  13. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    The SU30MKI, in the IAF

    The SU30MKI, in the IAF

    http://www.israelforum.com/board/showthread.php?t=10345

    Su-30MKI in the indian airforce is a long-range, high-endurance, heavy-class Air Dominance Fighter with multi mission capabilities. It is currently the most advanced version of Sukoi flying anywhere in the world.

    but some of the the technology and capability that the Su-30MKI boasts has absolutely no parallels across the world's air forces. The Su-30MKI gives its operator, the Indian Air Force, a capability that will remain unmatched by all rivals for the forseeable future.

    it has the best features of the cancelled su 37/47 super flanker and more

    the best western avionics systems possible(israeli, french)in the most menuverable of the airfames(of the su37), also many russian avionics have been replaced with better homemade stuff, lol made in india, i mean

    fully 3D thrust vectoring nozzles (even the f22 has only a 2D thrust vectoring)

    100% dual weapons capability, i mean it can use both the western and russian and indian weapons systems without the need for any mofications

    has rearward facing radar for rear firing missiles (gone are the days in wich if an adversary is on ur tail all u can do is fire off chaff and flares and try to escape/break his lock on u before he shoots his missile at u

    A radar that detects air targest to a range of 400 Nmiles and the capability to function as a mini awac(even thou the indian airfoce has the Phalcons as awacs, the su30mki's radar is sufficently long ranged enough to play a secondary role)

    its reportedly the best front line fighter aircraft on service today(yep, cos the f22 isnt inducted still)

    the below link has cool pics and a very good detailed analysis of the su30mki
    http://vayu-sena.tripod.com/info-su30mki.html

    according to the usaf simulations even a su30MK(not the far better MKI version (the I stands for india)) beats the latest f15 version "every time"
    http://vayu-sena.tripod.com/comparison-f15-su30-1.html

    comparision of the SU30MKI with the f16 and f18
    http://vayu-sena.tripod.com/comparis...18-su30-1.html

    india plans to buy 50 of these from russia and build a further 200-300 of them in india, 40 of them have already been deliverd

    this is in top of the tender for the 250 fighter aircraft the airfoce has , so far the competitors have been the f18 superhornet, the latest mig , sukoi, eurofighter all vying for that deal or part of it cos the deal is worth an estimated 9-13 billion$. its a TOT deal thou(total transfer of tech)

    pretty soon the SU30MKI will be able to carry the modified "awac killer" version of the ks172 aam, wich has a range of around 400kms, as well as the 300km range march 3 anti ship "brahmos" missile

    pics
    http://www.dtmedia.co.uk/images/Su30MKI.jpg

    http://www.bharat-rakshak.com/IAF/Im...30/Su-30b1.jpg

    http://vayu-sena-aux.tripod.com/pix/su30mki-x-002.jpg

    http://images.google.com/imgres?imgu...lr=&sa=N
     
  14. A.V.

    A.V. New Member

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    i think the brahmos to be used on the mki is not the antiship version but an
    a2g version which is being tried out.


    one more point the airframe is based on the upgraded su-27 program not the su37 as mentioned.


    although the pesa radar is very good i would like to see the later mki have the aesa zhuk phazotron recently developed and used on the su-35 BM flankers.
     
  15. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    This was an old thread,your right but many interesting details and comparisions.
     
  16. rock45

    rock45 Founding Member/ RIP our friend

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    Different weapons

    Leaning more already thanks Singh I'm going to go through the videos and links right now.
     
  17. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    Australians comment on SU-30MKI,MGI etc...

    http://www.defpro.com/news/details/5861/


    [​IMG]


    07:54 GMT, March 2, 2009 In this open letter, WGCDR Chris Mills of Air Power Australia responds to the public attack on Air Power Australia made by Maj. Gen Charles R Davis, Program Executive Officer of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Program, published on the 24th February, in the “Inside Defense” journal, under the title “Strike Back”.

    ----------------------------------------------------

    Major General Charles R. Davis
    Program Executive Officer
    Joint Strike Fighter Program

    Dear Major General Davis,

    I am responding to your comments published in the 24th February edition of Inside Defense. While I don’t usually reply to ad hominem attacks, I think that in this instance it is in the public interest, and in the interest of the security of the free world, to publicly address your statements.

    General Davis, you publicly lambast the Air Power Australia (APA) analyses. Did you not recall that your Lockheed Martin colleague, Steve O’Bryan, Director of Business Development, used and acknowledged APA’s future threat assessments in his ‘Navy League 2008a.ppt’ briefing? In Slide 7 of that briefing, O’Bryan correctly identifies the future threat as the Su-35BM Flanker E Plus[1] armed with the R-77M Ramjet missile and the ‘double digit’ SAMS. You mentioned the Su-30MKI as the threat being assessed. It seems that Lockheed Martin’s Marketing Department has got it right, and the JSF Project Office has got it wrong. Surely one would expect it to be the other way around?

    While you denigrate APA’s efforts, many draw heavily upon the APA website, which receives over 200,000 ‘hits’ daily, with a monthly information down load rate approaching half a Terabyte. There is a constant stream of correspondence, from many serving and former military personnel, thanking APA for its work and congratulating it on the accuracy, focus, breadth and depth of the content.

    I therefore take issue with your claim that “they [APA] have no concept of the modern warfare and systems of operations and airborne battle systems and coalition ops”. I am puzzled as to how you can make such a statement given the sheer volume of high quality reference material on future air combat posted on the APA website. Have you actually invested the time to study any of the APA published works? You would be well advised to do so.

    APA’s concern about the F-35 is not that it will meet a single Su-30MKI, as you claim, but that it will face a massed attack of advanced air combat fighters in the class of the Su-35BM. Mr. O’Bryan correctly used the Su-35BM as the one to beat in his presentation, not the Su-30MKI.

    Recent variants of the Flanker have an inbuilt data networking system, so each Flanker shares what it knows with its peers. Unlike the Flankers, which have impressive fuel reserves, smaller aircraft like the F-35 are heavily dependent on Air-to-Air Refuelling (AAR) tankers for persistence, and AWACS for network centricity. The F-35’s dependency on front-aspect stealth for survival forces “nose cold” entry into combat and heavy reliance upon off-board AWACS data for situational awareness, lest it give its position away by using its radar. A few indiscrete sweeps could trigger the sensitive ESM systems of the Flanker E Plus.

    So, the reality is that in an intensive air battle, these so-called ‘assets’ become ‘liabilities’ that must be protected since readily available Russian technology includes ‘AWACS killer’ missiles – such as the 200 nautical mile R-172 and the 160 nautical mile R-37 Arrow. While it is difficult to shoot down a networked Su-35BM, the network centric AWACS and AAR tankers are big, slow, defenceless, lumbering targets.

    In air combat scenarios, I always make the AWACS and AAR tankers the principal targets.

    The attack plan is a simple overwhelming swarm: Offensive Counter Air (OCA) Flankers engage the Combat Air Patrols (CAPs) protecting the AAR tankers and AWACS, while other sections of Flankers simultaneously kill the AAR tankers and AWACS. The fuel and missile payload advantage of the Flanker over the F-35 makes this easy to do.


    A probable scenario over vast areas of the Pacific Ocean where such air battles might rage, is that after the tankers are dropped, the F-35s exhaust their fuel and fall into the drink.

    If you fail to recognise the vulnerability of AWACS and AAR aircraft, and the risks in heavy dependency upon these exposed ‘assets’, then any reasonable person might ask “who is the one who does not understand future air warfare?”.

    This brings me to the subject of ‘reference threats’. Your assessments appear to be focused on threats that are currently deployed, while excluding those that the F-35 will actually face when it eventually reaches Initial Operational Capability (IOC). As I recall, you claim the F-35 is supposed to maintain air superiority over the next several decades.

    The air combat ‘reference threats’ in the reliably foreseeable future (2015-2020) are represented by the Su-35BM Flanker E Plus, the MiG-35 Fulcrum, advanced SAM-based integrated defences comprising the SA-15, SA-19, SA-20, SA-21, SA-22, and SA-23, supported by the new sensors such as passive emitter locating systems, and active phased array (AESA) VHF metric and L-band decimetric wavelength radars specifically designed to counter aircraft ‘stealthed’ against X-band centimetric wavelength radars. Look closely at Steve O’Bryan’s brief – he put these SAMs, the Su-35BM and the R-77M Ramjet (RVV-AE-PD) front-and-centre as the ‘reference threats’ [2].

    Dr Kopp has used this ‘reference threat’ approach to developing Air Power Australia analyses. His technical knowledge of Russian SAM systems and radars is encyclopaedic, and it has been a deliberate strategy of his to conduct research and publish a comprehensive database of these threat systems on the Air Power Australia website. He is also an experienced engineer and much of his doctoral thesis dealt with the design of AESA radars. He cannot be simply written off as a ‘mere academic’.

    So, when you made the derisory comment, “That's a very 1950s-type of mindset”, you would have been more accurate to use a 2015 date. An informed observer might reasonably conclude that the Air Power Australia analyses are focused in time much closer to 2050 than 1950.

    The JSF’s combat effectiveness is totally dependent on the thesis that ‘you cannot see me, therefore you cannot kill me’. If this premise is proven to be false by the standard due diligence process, like testing and evaluating the JSF against representative threats, then the consequence is the conclusion that the F-35 fails to meet the standards required of a future air combat aircraft.

    However, the glacial pace of development of the F-35 appears to have missed this crucial aspect in its DT&E program, and you must now rely on simulations alone to make your evaluations.

    Lockheed Martin recently conceded, refer to Janes Defence Weekly, that their air combat simulations failed to examine the full spectrum of engagements with aircraft like the Su-35BM. They also disclosed that 1990s technology, Sukhoi Su-30MKI, was used to represent Flanker capabilities.

    This choice is a fatal flaw in assessing the F-35’s capability – the Su-30MKI is not the future air combat threat – the much newer and more capable Su-35BM and the MiG-35 are. Surprisingly, no mention is even made of the potential of Sukhoi’s planned stealthy PAK-FA to overmatch the F-35.

    In low-observable operations, the F-35 will likely carry a maximum of four air-to-air missiles and operational planners must make an agonising choice between the long range AIM-120 and the close combat AIM-9X missiles. This is a ‘damned if you do, damned if you don’t’ decision.

    If four AIM-120s are carried and they don’t kill all enemy fighters, then the inevitable result will be that the much faster Sukhois and/or MiGs will run the defenceless F-35s down and kill them from close range with R-73/74 missiles or GSh-301 gunfire.

    If two AIM-120s are dropped for two AIM-9Xs, then the Beyond-Visual-Range capability is halved, increasing the chance of the F-35s being run down and engaged within-visual-range (WVR) by the Sukhois, which enjoy a substantial advantage in energy, height, speed, agility, range and number of missile shots available.

    The Lockheed Martin briefing cited by Janes exposed a further serious defect in these F-35 simulations, which is the unrepresentative 72 percent / 31 percent / 7 percent mix between Beyond Visual Range / transitional / close combat engagements. With only four missiles and inferior egress speeds, deadly ‘end game’ WVR engagements are more likely than BVR engagements.

    continued
     
  18. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    Where have you addressed the inevitable situation where the F-35 JSF runs out of missiles, or gas, or both, and must disengage and head for home with a super cruising Su-35BM, renowned for its large fuel reserves, rapidly closing for a 6 o’clock shot?

    Air Power Australia analyses are based on scientific method evaluations of future air combat and, not surprisingly, reach the same conclusions as did the RAND study entitled ‘The Future of Air Combat’. You know the one – it is the prestigious work that resulted in Dr John Stillion losing his job for making this perceptive assessment:

    F-35A is “Double Inferior” relative to modern Russian/Chinese fighter designs in visual range combat Inferior acceleration, inferior climb, and inferior sustained turn capability. Also has lower top speed. Can’t turn, can’t climb, can’t run.’

    Your incorrect and misleading public statements only serve to demonstrate that it is you who lack the necessary understanding of the likely threats that will be in the Asia-Pacific region when the JSF becomes operational some time after 2015.

    You have also fallen into the trap of the ‘garbage-in, garbage-out’ syndrome sometimes seen in simulation studies, by misrepresenting the future threat as the Su-30MKI, when in reality the networked, super-cruising, digital Su-35BM with a massive 20 Kilowatt radar and an onboard arsenal of missiles will be the air combat aircraft the Lightning II must engage. At least the LockMart sales boys got it right.

    As a former F-15 flight commander, and a weapons and tactics officer, you should know the likely outcome of a massed air battle of F-35s versus Su-35BMs. But if you cannot tell the difference between a Flanker E Plus and a Flanker H, the results will be ugly.

    Sincerely,

    WGCDR C. L. Mills (Retd), AM, BSc (Physics), MSc (USAFIT)
    Air Combat Analyst, Air Power Australia


    ----

    Endnotes:

    [1] Flanker E is the NATO designator for the Su-27M, also known as the Su-35. The Su-35BM or Su-35-1 is the designation used by the Russians for the latest super cruising digital avionics equipped variant of this aircraft, the BM standing for “Bolshaya Modernizatsiya” or “Large Modernization”. APA has generally labelled this aircraft as the Flanker E Plus, recognising that the Su-35BMs to be flown by the Russian Air Force will be rebuilt Su-27K/Su-35M Flanker E airframes, and newly built Su-35-1 airframes. As a substantially new variant the Su-35BM/Su-35-1 should eventually receive a new and unique NATO designator, such as “Flanker I” or “Flanker J”. Until then, APA will comply with established convention and designate these aircraft as subtypes of the Flanker E. Also refer: http://www.designation-systems.net/non-us/soviet.html
     
  19. A.V.

    A.V. New Member

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    although i am sure about the flankers capabilities which has always being downplayed by the west i cannot but make this comment that this whole saga has more to do with the f-22, and f-35 procurement by the australians.
    they are taking this internet war too far.
    the flanker is a great plane and there is no question about the MKI s capability but comparing it to 5 th gen planes wont be good.

    many american analysts have agreed that the jsf had design problems and that its not that stealthy as it is projected to be especially with the new age russian VHF radars.the jsf will be used in a scenerio when the f-22 have cleared the field initially.but the raptor is a very capable plane and even the russians acknowledge this. the raptor is the best plane around and only when the pakfa comes out can we make a proper comparision.

    i still believe that this is more to do with the ausralians wanting to get the f-22 and the americans offering them the jsf.

    thnx
     
  20. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

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    you are right But Australians have also been very unhappy and critical of the Super Hornet they seem to be unhappy with anything they get., they are overpowered and dreaming of fighting in Asian wars where they'll stepped on like a bug.(no pun intended)


    http://www.abovetopsecret.com/forum/thread324484/pg3
     
  21. rock45

    rock45 Founding Member/ RIP our friend

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    Claims

    I've been hearing claims of these long range missiles for many years now. Are they in production? In keys Pub a poster mentioned one of the two long range missile producing companies have closed.

    The Su-35BM lets see if it really gets produced and with the Su-35 being tested now they have what a whopping 3 or 4 prototypes.

    The Flanker has a cross section of a train and being the biggest target in the sky can't be a good thing. So carrying the extra 4/6 missiles just makes your aircraft be seen sooner and slows you down. Most 4th + fighters don't launch with max weapons/fuel.

    I can't see how people put down the F-35 before it's even finished and in production. It will never carry as many missiles or as much fuel as a Flanker it doesn't take a brain surgeon to figure that out. It can't it's smaller the US aircraft makers didn't want it to be as big as freight train that way or it would have been made that way.

    In general its replacing F-16/18/A10 as local bomb trucks and close air it will have a small RCS section so it should be able to get first shots in or at least get into a better firing position. It is not a F-22 but because of it's design it should do better then any 4th generation platform as far RCS.

    Its not designed to fight waves of make believe magical Flankers that are not even made and may never be made. So there's little point of going down this road until they made and these long missiles I've be hearing about start getting produced.

    I'll add to this later
     
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