What the Chinese think about Russian Su-35S

Military aircraft - Post cold war aircraft, including for example B-2, Gripen, F-18E/F Super Hornet, Rafale, and Typhoon.
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sprstdlyscottsmn

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Unread post18 Feb 2019, 17:44

zero-one wrote:Am I reading this correctly,
With a speed of Mach 4, 8Gs translates to around just 2 degrees per second.

The R-77 seems like a more viable threat. I'm not sure why it is generally considered inferior to the latest AMRAAM models besides the common belief that Russian electronics are considered behind those found in the US, Europe and even China, which is mostly true, don't get me wrong.

No. 8G is the maximum carriage limit, I'm sure. That speaks more to the pylons than the missile. Also, an R-27 isn't going to be flying at Mach 4. Its fins are too big.

R-77 isn't seen as much of a threat because it is, at best, equivalent to the AMRAAM A in electronics and range. It is agile, so in a near WVR fight it is a potent weapon, but I would bet on US ECM systems to wreak havoc with the seeker.

The R-77-1 might be up to AIM-120B standards. Really the R-27ET is possibly a bigger concern BVR. It has a higher claimed operational range than the R-77-1 and will give no terminal warning to anything that is not DAS or DASS equivalent.
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zero-one

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Unread post18 Feb 2019, 17:59

Thanks Sprst.
I know you're a big fan of DCS as am I (haven't actually played it but I watch all the analysis from DCS players)
How accurate is their aircraft and weapons modeling in your opinion?
over there, the R-77 is quite respectable at trans-visual ranges.
Makes me think, now I know why the Raptor's supersonic maneuverability is such a big deal.

If its stealth was somehow compromised, its still almost untouchable at those ranges if it can do a bat turn and stay supersonic
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Unread post18 Feb 2019, 19:39

There's a reason why the R-27 is still carried more frequently than R-77s. Reliability. It hasn't been until somewhat recently, that R-77s were seen, often.
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Unread post18 Feb 2019, 19:49

zero-one wrote:Thanks Sprst.
I know you're a big fan of DCS as am I (haven't actually played it but I watch all the analysis from DCS players)
How accurate is their aircraft and weapons modeling in your opinion?
over there, the R-77 is quite respectable at trans-visual ranges.
Makes me think, now I know why the Raptor's supersonic maneuverability is such a big deal.

If its stealth was somehow compromised, its still almost untouchable at those ranges if it can do a bat turn and stay supersonic

So for DCS the aircraft are a mixed bag. Assume AI only aircraft are garbage. Flaming Cliffs holdovers are not much better (A-10A, F-15C, Su-27, Su-33, Su-25, MiG-29A) an F-15C is unable to cruise at 30,000ft at speeds above 0.8M when fully AA loaded with a single centerline tank, the -1 says optimum cruise should be over 40,000ft at at >0.9M for that configuration, I looked). Dedicated aircraft that are NOT flaming cliffs holdovers are better (WWII line, Korea and Vietnam era line). The A-10C, F/A-18C Lot 20 (still in beta), and F-14A/B (still pre-beta) seem to be the most accurate as not only are flight characteristics modeled but system and subsystem behavior is modeled. They had Hornet and Tomcat flight crew verify things as minor as "how long does it take to run BIT", "What is the flap extension rate", and "you mean that part actually rotates when you flip that switch?" When flight crew are singing the praises of the systems and flight modeling, then I trust it.

Missiles... Russian missiles in DCS are wonder weapons. They always track and are only spoofed by decoys at the last second. U.S. missiles, not so much. 50% chance they go dumb on launch. Also, I was informed of a fundamental difference in how US and RU define missile ranges. US apparently defines the range as the range at which the missile can still maneuver while RU defines it as the range at which 1G flight can occur. They model all missiles in DCS using publicly stated ranges (that come from two different methods of measuring) but apply the RU method. Meaning if the US says the AIM-120C-5 has a range of 65km (for "x"G) then DCS models the AIM-120C-5 as having a range of 65km (for 1G). They neuter the range of US missiles in this manner.
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knowan

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Unread post18 Feb 2019, 20:25

The R-77 motor is entirely boost, unlike AIM-7 and AIM-120 with boost-sustain motors.

That results in much inferior kinematics beyond short range.
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Unread post18 Feb 2019, 21:11

knowan wrote:The R-77 motor is entirely boost, unlike AIM-7 and AIM-120 with boost-sustain motors.

That results in much inferior kinematics beyond short range.

Source for that? Even the R-27 has boost sustain with the ER/ET at the very least
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Unread post18 Feb 2019, 21:12

wrightwing wrote:The Su-35 can detect a 3m^2 target at 170km, in look down mode. In look up mode it's closer to 190-200km. If it's detecting something at 275km, it's either bigger than 3m^2, or a cued search.



Yep. We had this discussion several times here. This are official Figures from UAC:

https://www.uacrussia.ru/en/aircraft/li ... n-features

The most important difference between the Su-35 and ”4+” generation fighters is its fifth-generation avionics. The Irbis-E radar station with rotating phased antenna array designed by the V. Tikhomirov Research Institute of Instrumentation provides for the assured detection and acquisition of typical aerial targets at a range of up to 200 km (up to 170 km against ground background), and in a narrower field of view¬ – up to 350-400 km. The Irbis-E is able to track up to 30 targets at a time and guide missiles at 8 of them, without an interruption in airspace surveillance. The radar control system also provides for the selective acquisition of moving ground targets and cueing for low-level missions.


And normally the Russians give there Radarsystems a probability of detection of 50% (vs 85-90% for western Radars.) So that would mean the Range drop another 15-20% compare to Western Radarsystems.

sprstdlyscottsmn wrote:R-77 isn't seen as much of a threat because it is, at best, equivalent to the AMRAAM A in electronics and range. It is agile, so in a near WVR fight it is a potent weapon, but I would bet on US ECM systems to wreak havoc with the seeker.

The R-77-1 might be up to AIM-120B standards.


According to the manufacturer up to 80 km.

http://eng.ktrv.ru/production/military_ ... vv-ae.html

And it seems the R-77-1 ( RVV-SD) is still not in service now. There is only the RVV-AE listed for the armament of the Su-35

https://www.webcitation.org/6J6cwo1bR?u ... et_eng.pdf

http://www.knaapo.ru/products/su-35/

So even the Amraam C7 should be clearly superior to R-77.
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Unread post19 Feb 2019, 02:02

The R77 (RVV-AE) had serviceability issues that was reported by the Indian government auditors since 2009 with the Indian air force. The CAG then criticised the Indian navy when they bought 40 RVV-AE with the Mig-29K for buying without checking with and learning from the IAF, facing the same issue. Integration issues was also encountered later when the Indians tried to integrate the missile with the Mig-21Bison, again highlighted by the CAG. The shelf life was a short 8 years and I think the Indians did not even bother to do an extension for the missiles they had. Its illuminating that the Indians did not even consider the missile for the light combat aircraft (which now integrates the Israeli Derby). Having said that, the Indians, being the 1st export customer, were probably the guinea pigs. Unclear what's the performance of the next batches but no actual combat performance to gauge. The only kills by suks were probably in the Eritrea border war which was pre-R77 (kills were with R-27/R-73).

US may encounter the R-77 with chinese su-30/35 but I think probably have more concern with the PL-15/21s mated to their knock-offs. It is also useful to note the chinese modified their Su-30s to fire their domestic AAMs, likely they could do the same for the Su-35.
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Unread post19 Feb 2019, 08:45

sprstdlyscottsmn wrote:
knowan wrote:The R-77 motor is entirely boost, unlike AIM-7 and AIM-120 with boost-sustain motors.

That results in much inferior kinematics beyond short range.

Source for that? Even the R-27 has boost sustain with the ER/ET at the very least


Nothing solid, but I can't find a mention anywhere of the R-77 or R-77-1 having a boost-sustain motor, and K-77M is mentioned as being improved by having a 'two-pulse motor' (which likely means boost-sustain, as that is how boost-sustain is usually called in Russian sources), so R-77 and R-77-1 are likely boost only.

K-77M also has conventional fins, which indicates the lattice fins of earlier R-77 versions were sub-optimal for kinematics.
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Unread post19 Feb 2019, 13:48

Fair enough. Thanks.
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Unread post19 Feb 2019, 15:26

swiss wrote:According to the manufacturer up to 80 km.

http://eng.ktrv.ru/production/military_ ... vv-ae.html


Interesting thing about RVV-AE that in ground-launched form it has max range of 12 km and max altitude of 9 km according to that data.

Accoring to MBDA, VL MICA has up to 20 km range and up to 30,000 ft altitude. So despite being almost half the size of RVV-AE, it has significantly longer range and about similar altitude coverage. I take it that VL MICA has much better optimization for ground launches as the range is so different. That the altitude coverage is also similar, I think is because RVV-AE is draggy and possibly not very efficient design by modern standards. For example the electronics possibly take up a lot of space and thuse reducing the motor size. It was designed about the same time as AIM-120A was after all and Soviet/Russian electronics capabilities were not very good. So despite being much bigger, it can achieve only similar or lower flight performance to MICA missile. RVV-SD seems to have somewhat longer range, but it's also heavier than RVV-AE. So it might not be much more capable of modern missile after all.
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Unread post19 Feb 2019, 15:45

hornetfinn wrote:
swiss wrote:According to the manufacturer up to 80 km.

http://eng.ktrv.ru/production/military_ ... vv-ae.html


Interesting thing about RVV-AE that in ground-launched form it has max range of 12 km and max altitude of 9 km according to that data.

Accoring to MBDA, VL MICA has up to 20 km range and up to 30,000 ft altitude. So despite being almost half the size of RVV-AE, it has significantly longer range and about similar altitude coverage. I take it that VL MICA has much better optimization for ground launches as the range is so different. That the altitude coverage is also similar, I think is because RVV-AE is draggy and possibly not very efficient design by modern standards. For example the electronics possibly take up a lot of space and thuse reducing the motor size. It was designed about the same time as AIM-120A was after all and Soviet/Russian electronics capabilities were not very good. So despite being much bigger, it can achieve only similar or lower flight performance to MICA missile. RVV-SD seems to have somewhat longer range, but it's also heavier than RVV-AE. So it might not be much more capable of modern missile after all.


Interesting points, thanks. The main reason why, for exemple, the AMRAAM C7/D or the Mica NG have more range then there predecessor by the same size, is they have clearly smaller electronic components. So there is more space for fuel.
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Unread post19 Feb 2019, 16:23

weasel1962 wrote:The R77 (RVV-AE) had serviceability issues that was reported by the Indian government auditors since 2009 with the Indian air force. The CAG then criticised the Indian navy when they bought 40 RVV-AE with the Mig-29K for buying without checking with and learning from the IAF, facing the same issue. Integration issues was also encountered later when the Indians tried to integrate the missile with the Mig-21Bison, again highlighted by the CAG. The shelf life was a short 8 years and I think the Indians did not even bother to do an extension for the missiles they had. Its illuminating that the Indians did not even consider the missile for the light combat aircraft (which now integrates the Israeli Derby). Having said that, the Indians, being the 1st export customer, were probably the guinea pigs. Unclear what's the performance of the next batches but no actual combat performance to gauge. The only kills by suks were probably in the Eritrea border war which was pre-R77 (kills were with R-27/R-73).

US may encounter the R-77 with chinese su-30/35 but I think probably have more concern with the PL-15/21s mated to their knock-offs. It is also useful to note the chinese modified their Su-30s to fire their domestic AAMs, likely they could do the same for the Su-35.


Thought it was well established that the SU-27's killed Mig-29's with R-73's after R-27's missed (and more than a few of them). Bear in mind those Mig-29's probably didn't have the latest RWR's, ECM etc either.

For all their brochure weapons, they still seem to have trouble with basic BVR capability. This may have changed, but I bet it's one reason why Russian doctrine is so heavily rooted in the dogfight. They just haven't fought a war where BVR kills were the norm, unlike the US in DS, Kosovo etc..
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Unread post20 Feb 2019, 00:28

hornetfinn wrote:Interesting thing about RVV-AE that in ground-launched form it has max range of 12 km and max altitude of 9 km according to that data.


Supposedly the basic rule of thumb for maximum air to air to maximum surface to air range is 1/3rd, which would put the RVV-AE at just 36 km A2A, less than AIM-7M.
Are the Russians exaggerating A2A range but not SAM range? Given the known kinematic weaknesses of the missile, it seems possible.

Related note: surface launched AIM-120 has been claiming over 15 km range since the 90s.
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Unread post20 Feb 2019, 13:29

knowan wrote:
sprstdlyscottsmn wrote:
knowan wrote:The R-77 motor is entirely boost, unlike AIM-7 and AIM-120 with boost-sustain motors.

That results in much inferior kinematics beyond short range.

Source for that? Even the R-27 has boost sustain with the ER/ET at the very least


Nothing solid, but I can't find a mention anywhere of the R-77 or R-77-1 having a boost-sustain motor, and K-77M is mentioned as being improved by having a 'two-pulse motor' (which likely means boost-sustain, as that is how boost-sustain is usually called in Russian sources), so R-77 and R-77-1 are likely boost only.

K-77M also has conventional fins, which indicates the lattice fins of earlier R-77 versions were sub-optimal for kinematics.


Do you mean this?
http://eng.ktrv.ru/production/military_ ... vv-ae.html

It is powered with a one-mode solid-fuel rocket engine.


http://eng.ktrv.ru/production/military_ ... 27er1.html
http://eng.ktrv.ru/production/military_ ... 27et1.html

Interestingly R-27R1/T1 are also using single-mode rocket engine and ER1/ET1 are using dual-mode rockets.
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