Raytheon Unveils New Air-to-Air Missile [Peregrine]

F-35 Armament, fuel tanks, internal and external hardpoints, loadouts, and other stores.
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milosh

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Unread post05 Dec 2019, 20:48

timmymagic wrote:But given the big push to get AIM-9X range extended asap I suspect that the quality of Chinese DRFM jammers might be seen as a problem, if everyone was perfectly happy with Amraam's predicted performance there wouldn't have been such a rush.


It isn't DRFM per se but combination with smaller RCS of J-20 and future J-31, jamming works lot better with smallish RCS.
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timmymagic

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Unread post06 Dec 2019, 12:46

steve2267 wrote:
"is incredibly short"... yes and no. For normal, corporate engineering shops, I'd agree that's short. But maybe they had been doing IR&D work for a little while? Or maybe there had previously been some black / off the books work?

On the other hand, if the Skunk Works was involved, then 4-5 years sounds normal, maybe longish. The F-35 is, after all, the offspring from the Skunk Works.


Skunk Works isn't some secret sauce that can somehow significantly shorten a missile integration effort, particularly an air to air missile that will have to be launched from an aircraft under all parts of its flight envelope, unlike an A2G munition. According to their timeline they've got 2 years to get the missiles integrated and tested, that is incredibly short for an air to air munition that doesn't appear to even exist or have test shots done. If this was a Raytheon rather than LM you'd put money on it being some variant of the ESSM/Amraam lash up, but its not. I just cannot see the timeline as credible. If they'd said test launch maybe, but actually fielding?
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sferrin

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Unread post06 Dec 2019, 13:14

timmymagic wrote:
steve2267 wrote:
"is incredibly short"... yes and no. For normal, corporate engineering shops, I'd agree that's short. But maybe they had been doing IR&D work for a little while? Or maybe there had previously been some black / off the books work?

On the other hand, if the Skunk Works was involved, then 4-5 years sounds normal, maybe longish. The F-35 is, after all, the offspring from the Skunk Works.


Skunk Works isn't some secret sauce that can somehow significantly shorten a missile integration effort, particularly an air to air missile that will have to be launched from an aircraft under all parts of its flight envelope, unlike an A2G munition. According to their timeline they've got 2 years to get the missiles integrated and tested, that is incredibly short for an air to air munition that doesn't appear to even exist or have test shots done. If this was a Raytheon rather than LM you'd put money on it being some variant of the ESSM/Amraam lash up, but its not. I just cannot see the timeline as credible. If they'd said test launch maybe, but actually fielding?


You should look into the creation of the GBU-28. When time is of essence schedules can be shortened.
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timmymagic

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Unread post06 Dec 2019, 16:48

sferrin wrote:You should look into the creation of the GBU-28. When time is of essence schedules can be shortened.


Lots of examples out there of rapidly fielded munitions. But usually they're air to ground, where the release parameters can be very tight, upgrades of existing weapons, or for a desperate need prior to a major conflict. You can guarantee that after the crisis has passed a full integration effort is undertaken and that store isn't used again until the proper clearances are undertaken.
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Unread post06 Dec 2019, 21:00

timmymagic wrote:
sferrin wrote:You should look into the creation of the GBU-28. When time is of essence schedules can be shortened.


Lots of examples out there of rapidly fielded munitions. But usually they're air to ground, where the release parameters can be very tight, upgrades of existing weapons, or for a desperate need prior to a major conflict. You can guarantee that after the crisis has passed a full integration effort is undertaken and that store isn't used again until the proper clearances are undertaken.

LM has a lot of experience with missiles, so it's not their first rodeo. Not only have they produced numerous air launched missiles, PAC-3, and THAAD, but have been working on advanced propulsion with the CUDA, and with AFRL/DARPA on hypersonic weapons.
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Unread post08 Dec 2019, 11:39

wrightwing wrote:LM has a lot of experience with missiles, so it's not their first rodeo. Not only have they produced numerous air launched missiles, PAC-3, and THAAD, but have been working on advanced propulsion with the CUDA, and with AFRL/DARPA on hypersonic weapons.


Thats true. But the CUDA doesn't exist....and remind me how long PAC-3 and THAAD took to field...
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Unread post08 Dec 2019, 17:13

timmymagic wrote:
wrightwing wrote:LM has a lot of experience with missiles, so it's not their first rodeo. Not only have they produced numerous air launched missiles, PAC-3, and THAAD, but have been working on advanced propulsion with the CUDA, and with AFRL/DARPA on hypersonic weapons.


Thats true. But the CUDA doesn't exist....and remind me how long PAC-3 and THAAD took to field...

And now that they're fielded, LM has a vast amount of expertise, along with its work with DARPA on numerous missile projects. As for CUDA, you're correct that no product with that name exists, but it's incorrect to suggest that they haven't spent years in development so far. It's well beyond a concept/mock up.
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Unread post17 Apr 2020, 05:08

timmymagic wrote:
wrightwing wrote:They didn't just start work on the AIM-260, so I'm not sure where you're coming up with it being an unrealistic timeline, or that desperation is involved. The technologies involved have been worked on for over 10 years already. (i.e. JDRADM, NGM, T-3, not to mention AAAM.)


Starting work on a missile in 2017, with expected initial fielding in 2021-22 is incredibly short. Amraam was first test fired in 1982, but didn't make it onto aircraft until 1991....

Also given that most of the work you mention was conducted by Raytheon (or companies bought by Raytheon) and not LM they're not going to have those projects to leverage.


There is nothing which suggests that they "started work on the missile" in 2017. Only, that Lockheed was awarded a contract for the POR then. Embarking on a fairly significant development and acquisition program means that you can rest assured that they would have done at least a TRL-6 demonstration before then especially when both of the other OEM's interested in this space were, in 2014/15, performing their flight testing which would have taken their designs to a similar maturity state. So if you take this back to activity in the 2012-2015 time-frame you are looking at possibly a decade of work on the weapon. It could even go back to work from much earlier. Boeing, Lockheed, Northrop and Raytheon all had plenty of work come their way as far as technology development was concerned. Last I checked the USAF's black budget is quite large, even adjusting for pass through. And the technology related to this weapon wouldn't need to have been developed reliant exclusively on USAF funding. There is/was significant funding from the USN, MDA and the Army for many technologies which could be of interest on this program.

Just because they decided to talk about the AIM-260 JATM in 2019, and referenced that they gave a green light to the project in 2017, it doesn't mean that they embarked on a project with unrealistic timelines of fielding a spanking new, high risk weapon system in just 5 years or so. More than 21,000 AIM-120's have been produced. To think that the USAF just sat around doing nothing and all of a sudden got up and rushed to field a replacement in 2017 is a highly unrealistic view of things. More likely is that the program flows from a multi decade investment in technology development, S&T/R&D, prototyping, flight demonstrations and the works..finally culminating in a program-of-record.

timmymagic wrote:
wrightwing wrote:LM has a lot of experience with missiles, so it's not their first rodeo. Not only have they produced numerous air launched missiles, PAC-3, and THAAD, but have been working on advanced propulsion with the CUDA, and with AFRL/DARPA on hypersonic weapons.


Thats true. But the CUDA doesn't exist....and remind me how long PAC-3 and THAAD took to field...


In what sense does the "Cuda" not exist? Is it just a marketing exercise? If so, why is Lockheed investing in ground testing it? Why has the USAF funded flight test activity?

The U.S. Air Force has funded a flight test demonstration program for Lockheed Martin’s Cuda air-to-air missile, pushing the concept forward more than five years after it first appeared, the company...


https://aviationweek.com/defense-space/ ... le-flights

PAC-3 and THAAD are completely different systems with their own development, development and operational test challenges. Plus at least one of them had to go through Army acquisition. And the fact that lots of learning from those programs, and technologies developed for them, can be applied on the JATM. Lockheed wouldn't be starting from scratch.

If they (USAF) can execute a bomber program (which worked on maturity and design stability prior to down-select) and begin equipping first units in about a decade from contract award, then they sure as heck can do the same for a missile in about 5 years. The key here is the assessment of the technology maturity prior to program start. If you still need to invent majority of the stuff you will never get there. Maybe they'd need a decade or more in that case. However if technology has been developed earlier, in a systematic and gradual manner, and some form of risk-reduction demonstrations have been conducted then you are looking at a completely different program. Same would have been the case had the Boeing or Raytheon T3 had been chosen for this program instead. They wouldn't have been starting off from scratch but on the back of nearly a decade long technology development road-map that culminated in flight demonstrations.
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Unread post17 Apr 2020, 15:39

It's pretty clear that if the USAF gave the go-ahead in 2017, it was likely being developed/tested well in advance of that date (probably under a black program).

It was also apparent at least 10 years ago (more likely, 15) that AMRAAM was rapidly approaching its modernization potential, and that American fighters were carrying around inferior BVR weapons, vs. at least a few foreign systems. Namely, several Chinese weapons (PL-12, PL-15) as well as some Russian models (newer R-77's, R-33's), along with their hypersonic R-37.

The Chinese missiles in particular, were concerning USAF and USN leadership. To have done nothing during that time would have been irresponsible. True, America's stealth fighter (F-22) could level the playing field by virtue of its VLO - but neither the F-35 was here yet nor were America's 4th gen fighters properly equipped to deal with the emerging threat. It's almost a certainty work on the AIM-260 goes way back, and we know from public records several other AAM's were being worked on. It's a safe bet at least some of that technology made it into the AIM-260.

Fielding by next year is aggressive, but someone with intimate knowledge of the AIM-260 made that call - or at least had input on it. He or she knows how far along they've gotten, so I wouldn't bet against it. These aren't Russian IOC claims being made here, they're realistic assumptions based on real world progress...
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Unread post17 Apr 2020, 17:09

mixelflick wrote:It's pretty clear that if the USAF gave the go-ahead in 2017, it was likely being developed/tested well in advance of that date (probably under a black program)...


The T3 missiles (Boeing and Raytheon) conducted airborne demonstrations in FY13. That's 7 years ago. It is logical to assume that whatever those two OEM's proposed for the AIM-260 would have heavily leveraged those programs and the technology developed and demonstrated on them. That was what Lockheed was up against in terms of competition. So at a minimum, Lockheed would have had to have a similar or higher level of design and component/system maturity before going into the competition. Now if we just selected one of the T3 systems in FY13 and asked those OEM's to develop a fieldable system by FY22, most would not be talking risk and schedule at the same level. After all, those programs were awarded in 2009/2010 and flew in 2013/14 so a 12 year run would seem adequate. I think what throws folks off is that most of what Lockheed would have had to have demonstrated (to win), happened in the dark without a significant public trail of contracts, demonstrations and milestones. This may give the impression that Lockheed was contracted in 2017 to magically field an AMRAAM replacement in about 5 years. This doesn't mean that the 2022 IOC date may still involve some sort of risk..but we have no way to gauge that level of risk because there is really no visibility into the technology beyond connecting the dots on some of the SBIR awards and other work matured over the last decade.

As far as executing complex systems and time-lines/schedules are considered. Perhaps one should also have a look at the AGM-183A. DARPA TBG program was stood up in FY14 and the USAF plans to field the ARRW in FY22 or around 8-9 years. TBG/ARRW is going to be considerably more complex to execute than a future interceptor/AMRAAM replacement.

Fielding by next year is aggressive, but someone with intimate knowledge of the AIM-260 made that call..


IOC in CY-2022 could also mean " by December 2022 (FY23)". That's 2.5+ years away.

The weapon is initially planned to fly in the F-22’s main weapons bay and on the Navy’s F/A-18, with the F-35 to follow. Flight tests will begin in 2021 and initial operational capability is slated for 2022, Genatempo said.
https://www.airforcemag.com/Air-Force-D ... ter-China/


Again, if Boeing had won the JATM contract based on its T3 demonstrator, that would have been more than 12 years between initial contract award (DARPA) for technology development and demonstrations, and fielding a weapon system. What we have very little visibility into is what Lockheed Martin did, using classified and unclassified funding, between 2010 and 2014, while its other two competitors were working on their DARPA programs which were out in the open.
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Unread post18 Apr 2020, 03:17

I think my biggest concern with JATM is how it will achieve the kinematic performance needed to overmatch PL15 or R37 within AMRAAM-level size constraints. I wonder if you could make it slightly larger and still fit it into F35 and F22 in the same quantities as AIM120.

Granted, NEZ size won't matter as much for 5th gens but 4th gens will need as much as they can get. If it means you end up with a heavier missile that can't be mounted on Viper wingtips I say so be it - F35 is replacing them anyway.
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Unread post18 Apr 2020, 04:21

boogieman wrote:I think my biggest concern with JATM is how it will achieve the kinematic performance needed to overmatch PL15 or R37 within AMRAAM-level size constraints. I wonder if you could make it slightly larger and still fit it into F35 and F22 in the same quantities as AIM120.

Granted, NEZ size won't matter as much for 5th gens but 4th gens will need as much as they can get. If it means you end up with a heavier missile that can't be mounted on Viper wingtips I say so be it - F35 is replacing them anyway.

There are several ways. You can increase fuel volume within the given from factor. You can use different fuel, with different levels of burn energy. You can improve the motors/dual pulse/etc... You can improve flight profiles. You can improve aerodynamic efficiency. You can increase the case diameter while reducing the fin size, and still fit in the same space. There's a reason why there's a lot of secrecy around the AIM-260 (to include new ammo bunkers/handling to maintain secrecy.)
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Unread post18 Apr 2020, 04:52

wrightwing wrote:
boogieman wrote:I think my biggest concern with JATM is how it will achieve the kinematic performance needed to overmatch PL15 or R37 within AMRAAM-level size constraints. I wonder if you could make it slightly larger and still fit it into F35 and F22 in the same quantities as AIM120.

Granted, NEZ size won't matter as much for 5th gens but 4th gens will need as much as they can get. If it means you end up with a heavier missile that can't be mounted on Viper wingtips I say so be it - F35 is replacing them anyway.

There are several ways. You can increase fuel volume within the given from factor. You can use different fuel, with different levels of burn energy. You can improve the motors/dual pulse/etc... You can improve flight profiles. You can improve aerodynamic efficiency. You can increase the case diameter while reducing the fin size, and still fit in the same space. There's a reason why there's a lot of secrecy around the AIM-260 (to include new ammo bunkers/handling to maintain secrecy.)

Yes indeed. Still, OPFOR can do all those things AND have the benefit of a bigger missile to work with. That's why I was surprised to hear it won't be a ramjet/VFDR design. I would have expected a throttleable motor to be the most efficient solution here kinematically.

Notwithstanding some other "secret sauce" propulsion breakthrough, I suppose there is also the need to keep costs down. A Meteor style ramjet mated to a guidance package capable of killing 5th gen threats may have been overkill (and wastefully expensive) for the range envelope being covered.
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Unread post18 Apr 2020, 05:08

boogieman wrote:
Yes indeed. Still, OPFOR can do all those things AND have the benefit of a bigger missile to work with. That's why I was surprised to hear it won't be a ramjet/VFDR design. I would have expected a throttleable motor to be the most efficient solution here kinematically.

Notwithstanding some other "secret sauce" propulsion breakthrough, I suppose there is also the need to keep costs down. A Meteor style ramjet mated to a guidance package capable of killing 5th gen threats may have been overkill (and wastefully expensive) for the range envelope being covered.

I think you answered part of your question, in terms of "secret sauce propulsion." Secondly, the OPFOR isn't going to be carrying R-37 or PL-21 internally.
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Unread post18 Apr 2020, 05:29

wrightwing wrote:
boogieman wrote:
Yes indeed. Still, OPFOR can do all those things AND have the benefit of a bigger missile to work with. That's why I was surprised to hear it won't be a ramjet/VFDR design. I would have expected a throttleable motor to be the most efficient solution here kinematically.

Notwithstanding some other "secret sauce" propulsion breakthrough, I suppose there is also the need to keep costs down. A Meteor style ramjet mated to a guidance package capable of killing 5th gen threats may have been overkill (and wastefully expensive) for the range envelope being covered.

I think you answered part of your question, in terms of "secret sauce propulsion." Secondly, the OPFOR isn't going to be carrying R-37 or PL-21 internally.

True, but to what extent is AIM260 an attempt to out-stick them regardless? Perhaps that will be the job of LREW...

Even if we consider JATM as being more in the weight class of PL15 and R77M, they are likely to be larger missiles with more internal volume available. I will be very interested to see what the AIM260 actually looks like because some super spicy secret sauce is definitely called for to truly overmatch the competition.
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