F-35 versus DEW equipped jumbo jet

The F-35 compared with other modern jets.
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SpudmanWP

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Unread post06 Dec 2018, 07:01

eloise wrote:That true, but when AIM-120 or Meteor are launched, they burn very strong, for a moment maybe a few seconds, IRST might be able to sense F-35 direction, then the blind ray coming. I haven't view AIM-120 launch in infrared so can't be sure :?

At best the IRST would detect the AMRAAM boost phase, but not the F-35. The ABL is not designed to track an AAM let alone shoot one.
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nathan77

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Unread post06 Dec 2018, 07:42

As the pilot, I would consider the weaknesses of the laser carrying jumbo jet:
1) The laser can only shoot one thing at a time
2) Jumbo jets turn slowly
3) The F-35 has a significant situation awareness advantage
4) The Jumbos IR sensor is optimised for high-flying ballistic missiles - not ground clutter
5) Re-charge and sustainment rates of the laser are unknown - however capacitors do take some time to re-charge

Load-out - I would fit as many AMRAAMs as the F-35 could carry - internally and externally (since the F-35 would still have the detection range advantage - since a Jumbo has no RCS reduction).

Once my radar could track the jumbo, I would circle around to get behind the jumbo (although it might take some time to do so if I'm flying the opposite direction).

I would approach the jumbo from below, so the jets optical system has to pick me out from the thermal clutter coming from the earth (not what it's designed for). The AMRAAMs maximum engagement range is greater than the IRST, but I would wait and continue closing the gap as ideally I want to be in the AMRAAMS NEZ - but know the jumbo would likely detect me before then.

I don't 'think' the laser can shoot backwards - so I know the Jumbo has to turn to engage me. So as soon as the Jumbo starts turning to engage me - then I know the 'detection' game is up and I'd hit the after-burner and try to circle around to try and keep on the Jumbo's six as it turns. At such a distance I probably cannot do so - so I would fire one AMRAAM and 5 seconds later another, while spiralling around trying to keep somewhat behind the Jumbo. If the Jumbo wants to target me it will be turning into two oncoming missiles, so it would be forced to engage them. This buys me a bit more time to continue to spiral in (always trying to keep on its tail), and closing the distance. Once the first missile is destroyed I'd shoot enough while it engages the second, which buys time to get within the remaining AMRAAMs NEZ. I would then send off all remaining missiles one after the other with a few seconds pause between each (still trying to remain keep behind the turning Jumbo). Since the laser can only shoot one missile at a time, one of them should find their mark.
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Unread post06 Dec 2018, 08:11

nathan77 wrote:4) The Jumbos IR sensor is optimised for high-flying ballistic missiles - not ground clutter
I don't 'think' the laser can shoot backwards - so I know the Jumbo has to turn to engage me.

Slight correction:
Out of the three, NKC-135 has a radar and its laser can shot backward. Laser power rating is at 458 kW compared to 2 MW of YAL-1
nkc-135-all-df-st-82-05608-1S.jpg

nkc-135-all-df-sc-82-11337-1S.jpg

NKC-135A-ALL-3S.jpg

nkc-135a_05_of_29.jpg


nathan77 wrote:So as soon as the Jumbo starts turning to engage me - then I know the 'detection' game is up and I'd hit the after-burner and try to circle around to try and keep on the Jumbo's six as it turns. At such a distance I probably cannot do so - s

Yes, at distance it will be harder,
at a distance of 50 km, even if you were moving at Mach 1.6, the angular velocity is barely 0.4 degrees/second
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Unread post06 Dec 2018, 21:57

eloise wrote:
steve2267 wrote:Let's say I manage to approach from directly astern the target.

I am curious, how long will it take for F-35 to maneuver to the tail aspect of "laser aircraft"?
It can't use afterburner obviously because that will increase IR signature a lot


steve2267 wrote: I fire one AIM-120 off to my right, say 30 deg to the right of my nose. It flies off along this heading a ways, then hangs a left and approaches the target from, say, the target's 135° aspect (i.e. 135° off the target's nose -- since I'm approaching from the target's 180° bearing -- i.e. directly behind it). I launch another slammer 30 deg to the left of my nose, such that it flies a ways, then hangs a right and approaches the target from it's 225° aspect or bearing. I'm trying to pincer the target between the slammers. Also, depending on when the target picks up the slammers... it may not know from where they came... so I try to keep my position a mystery as well.

I get your idea but i don't think air to air missile can do that, what you propose sound more like what a cruise missile can do. But you could use the flying missile rail instead (if they actually get built)
FLying missile rail.png

SBIR.PNG


steve2267 wrote:I am unfamiliar with the sensitivity of the F-14 derived IRST sensor carried on the YAL-1. It may detect an ICBM (a very hot / bright target) from several hundred miles, but what is it's target detection range of an IR-suppressed tactical aircraft somewhere between 0.5-0.85 Mach?

It is the same one recently went on F-15, F-16 and F-18, let take a high optimistic estimate of 70 km.
viewtopic.php?t=54648&p=406001
Tiger-eye.jpg

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1.PNG

It's doubtful that any of these jets can detect an F-35 at anywhere near 70km, from a head on, non-afterburning aspect. The same soda straw FOV limitations apply, as on fighter aircraft, that are doing non-cued searches. They also have the same MLD limitations against AAMs, as any other aircraft. After burn out, the missile is going to be pretty close, before any warnings are going off. These jets don't have a 360 degree spherical engagement capability, and they are not particularly agile.
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nathan77

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Unread post07 Dec 2018, 02:12

I'm going with the assumption that they do have 360 degree spherical IR vision as mentioned in the scenario.

eloise wrote:Slight correction:
Out of the three, NKC-135 has a radar and its laser can shot backward. Laser power rating is at 458 kW compared to 2 MW of YAL-1


While the acquisition radar is mid-plane, do you know if it's a sweeping or fixed radar?

eloise wrote:at a distance of 50 km, even if you were moving at Mach 1.6, the angular velocity is barely 0.4 degrees/second


Yes, that's definitely an issue - so using turn rate doesn't appear to be an option at such a range.

Without atmospheric conditions which can help disburse laser (i.e. cloud), I would still attack from a low altitude (make the sensors work to pick me out from the ground clutter). And I would still attack from the stern - with the laser at the top and closer to the front it still has to adjust as it can't shoot through its fuselage.

I still think going beast mode with 14 AMRAAMS. I don't know the fire rates of lasers, but there's certainly issues around thermal management and the time it takes for capacitors to recharge. It's not like star wars. So spamming missiles (multiple targets) would be the way I'd go.
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Unread post07 Dec 2018, 03:43

I will blind YAL-1/A-60 sensor with my own HEL, then clean up with cannon
f-35.PNG

power reqired to damage optic.jpg
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Unread post07 Dec 2018, 09:17

TOD?

If the F-35 pilot chooses the time to attack they can use the mission data files to have the autopilot keep the F-35 within the disk of the sun as it approaches the heavy, then pop the cockpit, flight-crew and flight controls with an AIM-9X-3, then fly away from the target, still inside the disk of the sun.

Guaranteed loss of target aircraft.
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eloise

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Unread post07 Dec 2018, 09:38

wrightwing wrote:It's doubtful that any of these jets can detect an F-35 at anywhere near 70km, from a head on, non-afterburning aspect.

When F-35 cruising in subsonic speed, that is unlikely, but once it start shotting AIM-120 , then it get a lot more plausible
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Unread post07 Dec 2018, 09:56

nathan77 wrote:While the acquisition radar is mid-plane, do you know if it's a sweeping or fixed radar?

I don’t know for sure, but let assume it is an AESA on a steering platform similar to what available on E-3
nathan77 wrote:Without atmospheric conditions which can help disburse laser (i.e. cloud), I would still attack from a low altitude (make the sensors work to pick me out from the ground clutter). And I would still attack from the stern - with the laser at the top and closer to the front it still has to adjust as it can't shoot through its fuselage

What if the jumbo jet crusing at low altitude and flying in a circle pattern?
element1loop wrote:TOD?

If the F-35 pilot chooses the time to attack they can use the mission data files to have the autopilot keep the F-35 within the disk of the sun as it approaches the heavy, then pop the cockpit, flight-crew and flight controls with an AIM-9X-3, then fly away from the target, still inside the disk of the sun.

Guaranteed loss of target aircraft.

I don’t think the sun affect modern IRST the same way it affect first generation IR missile
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element1loop

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Unread post07 Dec 2018, 10:09

eloise wrote:I don’t think the sun affect modern IRST the same way it affect first generation IR missile


Do you think there will be an IRST fixed on the Sun's disk?

Do you think the Laser's targeting-optics (i.e. a physically massive aperture drenching the chip in photons) will be optimized to find and engage a target inside the sun's disk?

Do you think it's active-optics will perform as advertised in that situation?
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Unread post07 Dec 2018, 10:42

element1loop wrote:Do you think there will be an IRST fixed on the Sun's disk?
Do you think the Laser's targeting-optics (i.e. a physically massive aperture drenching the chip in photons) will be optimized to find and engage a target inside the sun's disk?

Do you think it's active-optics will perform as advertised in that situation?

Staring array IRSR can view a big sector at a time, the sun while very hot, only take up a small section of that sector. Furthermore, I think you could be detected before you get inside the sun disk
ddm-4.jpg

Hiding in the sun tactic.png


garrya wrote:I will blind YAL-1/A-60 sensor with my own HEL, then clean up with cannon

What is the blinding distance of 100 kW laser? will it be longer than the distance IRST can detect F-35?
Blinding tactic.png
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element1loop

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Unread post07 Dec 2018, 11:09

eloise wrote: ... the sun while very hot, only take up a small section of that sector. Furthermore, I think you could be detected before you get inside the sun disk


You apparently didn't grasp the time of day reference. The pilot chooses the time, so is also choosing the angle of the sun with respect to the target (so your graphic is not describing the situation at all) so the detectors will not be seeing the F-35 entering the sun's disk at all, because the F-35 could enter the sun's disk well over 100nm from the target and still fly inbound within the disk and kill the heavy DEW undetected.

So I would say there's no way you're going to detect it before it fires a missile, and the active optics of the DEW are not going to cope with the situation, even if the detection-system of the target detected where the missile came from. And if the F-35 J-turns and reverses course and leaves the area within the sun's disk, it is likely to escape without being fired at, let alone actually being seen, as the target jet is going to be in total chaos the moment the missile strikes, and if the cockpit is targeted and hit, control and landing is not an option.

No F-35 lost, aircraft not damaged, one missile used, pilot not blinded.

Scratch one heavy DEW aircraft.
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ricnunes

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Unread post07 Dec 2018, 12:13

@eloise,

Don't get me wrong but I think you're doing lots of wrong assumptions here, namely on the ABL sensors such as the YAL-1 IR sensor(s).
IMO, you cannot assume that the YAL-1 IR sensors have the same "image definition" as the IR sensors found on aircraft like the F-35 (DAS and EOTS) or other aircraft like the F-22, etc... which the image that you posted by last is representative of.

The YAL-1 IR sensors are designed to detect big missiles (ICBMs) apparently at ranges in excess of 600 km. In order to achieve this there are most certainly some big trade-offs being one of them (this IMO) the lack of IR imagery quality that you can see in IR imagery on modern aircraft IR sensors which should result in a very, very limited capability of detecting and identifying fighter aircraft targets at considerable ranges. Resuming, these sensors (YAL-1) are "tuned" ("designed" is the proper word) to detect very high temperature targets consistent with big missile plume that happens during the boost phase of an ICBM - This contrasts with the relatively low temperature of a fighter aircraft (much lower than a big missile plume).

Then you assume that the NKC-135's radar is AESA, why? This aircraft was in service from 1975 to 1984 (and is now retired and currently in storage) therefore I would very much doubt that its radar would be AESA.

In your reply to my first reply you also assumed that an ICBM is more resistant than a fighter aircraft like the F-35, apparently just because the ICBM is bigger.
But just because an ICBM is "bigger" than the F-35 (no doubt about that) it doesn't mean that it's more resistant, specially against a Laser Weapon. Also just because the ICBM is bigger it doesn't mean that its "outer shell" (fuselage) is thicker than the F-35's fuselage. ICBM also have to be as light as possible and that usually means that the boost stages must be a light a possible and one of the things that usually helps accomplishing this, is having thin a outer shell/fuselage. Moreover there's the interior of the ICBM's boost stages which is almost entirely filled with Liquid Oxygen and Fuel. Therefore ICBM's boost stages are "flying bombs" in which once a laser manages to puncture a hole on the missile's fuselage - which is not that hard since a missile like an ICBM is a huge cylinder and as such the Laser will hit a rather flat surface making the "life easier" for the Laser - then you'll have a big KA-BOOM!

As opposed, a big part of the small F-35's interior shouldn't have explosive content even if a laser manages to puncture/penetrate the F-35's fuselage. Moreover, if you're shooting a Laser against a F-35 you'll probably won't hit a flat area/panel which by itself will minimize the Laser effectiveness against the F-35's fuselage. Actually the fact that the F-35 was designed to deflect radio/radar waves from the aircraft and away from the emitter could (if I'm not mistaken) eventually help doing a similar effect against light waves (which is what a Laser is) although less effectively compared to radio/radar waves, I admit. So the combination of fuselage thickness with not having much flat areas/panels will probably give the F-35 a bigger resistance against a Laser compared to the rather flat fuselage (relative to the Laser source) of an ICBM during the boost phase.

However I do admit and agree that if the laser could be shot directly against the cockpit it could do some serious harm to the pilot. But then again if "you're allowed" to assume that the ABL such as the YAL-1 or NKC-135 could have an AESA radar then I could assume that the F-35 could be equipped with a Laser Warning Receiver and once or if the ABL manages to detect and lock the F-35 - and this is done in the YAL-1 thru lower power lasers with helps aiming the Big Laser - than the F-35 could immediately start performing evasive measures and/or maneuvers.

Finally and in the sequence of what I said earlier, I don't think that an ABL such as the YAL-1 would have a minimal chance in a one-on-once engagement against the F-35 and this probably also extends to many/most of the other modern fighter aircraft as well.
Then, there's a reason why the YAL-1 was retired and scrapped!
One could argue that the reason for this was money or more precisely fund cuts or lack of funds. But if the YAL-1 was really successfully and effective then I'm pretty sure that it would be in service (even if in limited numbers) by now.
Apparently its (YAL-1) effectiveness against the target that it was really designed against - ICBMs - was pretty limited so imagine against other smaller, harder to detect and maneuverable (ICBMs don't "maneuver"/change course/directions during the boost phase) targets?? The YAL-1 being scrapped is probably the answer to this question.
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Unread post07 Dec 2018, 13:02

ricnunes wrote:Don't get me wrong but I think you're doing lots of wrong assumptions here, namely on the ABL sensors such as the YAL-1 IR sensor(s).
IMO, you cannot assume that the YAL-1 IR sensors have the same "image definition" as the IR sensors found on aircraft like the F-35 (DAS and EOTS) or other aircraft like the F-22, etc... which the image that you posted by last is representative of
The YAL-1 IR sensors are designed to detect big missiles (ICBMs) apparently at ranges in excess of 600 km. In order to achieve this there are most certainly some big trade-offs being one of them (this IMO) the lack of IR imagery quality that you can see in IR imagery on modern aircraft IR sensors which should result in a very, very limited capability of detecting and identifying fighter aircraft targets at considerable ranges. Resuming, these sensors (YAL-1) are "tuned" ("designed" is the proper word) to detect very high temperature targets consistent with big missile plume that happens during the boost phase of an ICBM - This contrasts with the relatively low temperature of a fighter aircraft (much lower than a big missile plume).

For infrared sensor, bigger aperture is better
How much better you can refer to stealthflanker topic viewtopic.php?t=54648&p=406273
The photo i posted belong to DDM-NG aka MWS for Rafale, a much smaller IR sensor than AAS-42 system on YAL-1.
Furthermore, a derivetive of AAS-42 recently went on F-15/F-16/F-18 so i think the sensitivity of the system should be quite good, it hard to believe that it could be worse than Rafale MWS
AAS-42 is a long wave IRST too so it can detect cold target as well.


ricnunes wrote:Then you assume that the NKC-135's radar is AESA, why?.

When i want to know “what tactic that aircraft A can use to defeat aircraft B” ,and there are certain unknown information about aircraft B, i will assume the best case scenario for aircraft B, so that i don’t have to re-plan/re-think when aircraft B turn out better than expected. That make sense?
Bottomline i want to know what possible/creative tactic that could be used to deal with jumbo jet equipped with highly powerful laser weapon,assuming they become more popular in the future
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Unread post07 Dec 2018, 17:43

eloise wrote:....
Bottomline i want to know what possible/creative tactic that could be used to deal with jumbo jet equipped with highly powerful laser weapon,assuming they become more popular in the future


When we enter the realm of hypothetical strategies on this scale we get into the tensions such as armament-armor debates/cycles. What if my armor was 10 inches thicker? Well, what if my gun was a hypersonic tungsten rod? Well what if my armor was neutronium and five miles thick? Well what if my gun was a Death Star? ... etc. etc.
It is a meaningless discussion when it leaves realistic circumstances.

This debate is of the type - Bigger vs speed, or Battleship vs Battlecruiser ... Can a small torpedo/missile boat with 50 knot speed take out a battleship? Can the Battleship destroy swarms of gunboats? There is no answer to that in the hypothetical. It's an evolution tension.

Actual tactics take into account real capabilities. The Aircraft Carrier is on the Battleship side and has real specific capabilities. The F-35 is on the gunship side and has real specific capabilities. Tactics can be imagined against those realities. If you have a spare $500B and want to design a better Carrier- or F-35, be my guest. But show me the money.

In this case, the F-35 would eat the YAL-1's lunch, before the janitor got it out of the boneyard. And the yard janitor would never even know he had been attacked until he was already dead. That's the facts. If you want to compare a flying operational Death Star, I'll probably wait till you have wasted your $500T before I tell you what kind of $100 secret marble, I plan to use to counter it. The marble will be as real as your Death Star.

MHO,
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