This assumes that the stealthy TEDBF is being launched from a CATOBAR carrier. Not our STOBARs. Engine power will be bumped up anyway since the F414s are a stopgap solution until the 110KN class engine comes along. For anti ship missions there are ship based AshMs. For airborne anti ship missions there is no missile that can fit in the IWB as of now. If national defence budget can support the operating costs 15 years from now, then why not? Same for maintenance costs.For some reason, folks here keep bringing that up. Stealth is not the answer to everything! If anything it is an aerodynamic compromise for being low observable. TEDBF is best the way it is because no one knows their requirements better than IN!
If you really start thinking stealth TEDBF:
..there may be many more
- Are you OK with the low pressure recovery, and hence low power output with serpentine intakes?
- Are you OK with low weapons load take off from carrier deck? How many missions can you fulfill with a light load?
- Is TEDBF to take out enemy planes in the air, or to also target their vessels? What is the weight/size of anti ship missiles vs A2A missiles? Again are you willing to compromise on take-off weight + safety margin on an air strip which is itself bobbing about on the sea?
- What about operating costs? The cost of flying stealth is an order of magnitude more expensive.
- What about maintenance costs? Especially in harsh marine environs?
Assume we have both a STOBAR launched TEDBF and a CATOBAR launched F-35C and both have the same task- to sink an enemy ship (part of carrier flotilla) about a thousand kms out in the sea. Which would you prefer?stealthy TEDBF is being launched from a CATOBAR
Fair point, but tell me your position if I say that we should invest in ship launched AShMs so that we don't have to launch a plane to sink a ship. Here is a scenario:Assume we have both a STOBAR launched TEDBF and a CATOBAR launched F-35C and both have the same task- to sink an enemy ship (part of carrier flotilla) about a thousand kms out in the sea. Which would you prefer?
Now F-35C is stealthy so while it is harder to see, It's IWB eats into fuel space- so it has less range. Even the missiles it carries in a cramped IWB are smaller and have lesser range, so it has to go closer to the enemy to launch. Since the missile warhead is also small it may have to launch 3-4 missiles to sink the same ship where 1-2 giant AshM may have done the trick by delivering the same explosive power.
With an optimised for stealth F-35C, it has to:
- Go farther from own base to launch smaller ranged missiles it can carry internally
- Has lesser range itself because of IWB eating into fuel capacity- this conflicts with above requirement
- Since it releases its weapons from much closer to the enemy, chances of it being shot down also increase (can't disregard anti-stealth radars mounted on the enemy CBG)
OTOH, with an optimised for lift TEDBF, it can carry bigger missiles farther from home ACC because of no stealth penalty, no range penalty, no lift penalty. It can deliver a more punishing hit with say just 1 or 2 externally mounted longer ranged+heavier warhead missiles and launch from a higher distance safety margin.
Same dis/advantage also applies if you have to bomb a vital land target near the coast from hundreds of kms away with a heavy LACM. Since seas are huge & space is no problem, they give you safety with distance provided you can operate far away from enemy land/ships and still be effective. I'd pick the fighter that can go farther and shoot missiles that can go even farther so as to keep my own CBG as far away from enemy missiles as possible. Only if the queen of the CBG, the carrier survives then you can launch plane after plane, and win the war even after attrition.
I think you have kind of answered your own question. I will only challenge your protection from enemy's AD bubble hypothesis. The air-launch gives you tremendous safety and range. Like in the previous post I will pick the option that allows safer launch from a longer distance. Enemy CBG will have their own eyes and ears in the air and sub surface. The closer you approach to it, the higher your chances of perishing.we don't have to launch a plane to sink a ship... cannot be offered protection from the CBG's AD bubble.. in anti shipping role the plane's job is to act as a range extender for the missile
One of the funniest things about the ocean is the fact that its surface is curved. We tend to think about water forming large flat sheets, but the surface of a large body of water is not actually flat at all -- it follows the curvature of the Earth.
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