F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 11 Apr 2018, 23:44
by spazsinbad
F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief
11 Apr 2018 Sydney J. Freedberg Jr.

"CAPITOL HILL: F-35 Joint Strike Fighters could detect, track, and, possibly, even shoot down ballistic missiles by 2025, the Missile Defense Agency director told Congress this morning. “I’d say six to seven years to essentially work out the Concept of Operations (and) develop the capabilities — (whether) it’s sensor-based or a new fast missile that’s hung on the bottom of an F-35 for the BMDS (Ballistic Missile Defense) mission — integrate those capabilities, test them, and deliver them into a theater of operations,” Lt. Gen. Samuel Greaves told the Senate appropriations subcommittee on defense. “We see that deployed capability as, if not a game changer, then a significant contributor to future ballistic missile defense.”...

...The AMRAAM missile isn’t designed to chase an ICBM into space, so it would have a narrow window to kill one before it escaped the atmosphere. Greaves’s wording suggests using the F-35 to shoot ICBMs might require developing “a new fast missile,” which would take years to develop.

What the F-35 can already do is act as a sensor. Its Distributed Aperture System (DAS) can pick up the infrared emission of a boosting rocket, its computers can pinpoint the threat’s location, and its network connections can transmit tracking data to the rest of the force. What’s more, since the US military is buying a projected 2,443 F-35s — 1,763 for the Air Force alone — there’ll be lots of them in danger zones around the world. Developing a new weapon to turn them into missile killers would be expensive, but tweaking them to make them missile trackers is probably not, and it would add a whole new kind of sensor to the global missile defense system....

...“Our job is to look outside of the classic missile defense system” — Patriot, THAAD, GBI — “and look for sensors and shooters that would be able to contribute when integrated into the BMDS, and we see F-35 as one,” Greaves said. “We’ve been working with the Air Force at least the last few months, and we did a test (with the Navy) a few years ago.”...

...Besides the Air Force, Greaves said the regional Combatant Commanders (COCOMs) would play a vital role, specifically in figuring how to use the F-35 in real-world missions: “The Concept of Operations (CONOPS) is not my area; that is for the combatant commander,” Greaves said.

Greaves didn’t say so explicitly, but the commander in question is almost certainly that of Pacific Command, which confronts North Korea. Unlike Russia or China with their vast territories and massive anti-aircraft defenses, North Korea’s launch sites are relatively close to US airbases and could even be targeted by fighters outside North Korean airspace."

Source: https://breakingdefense.com/2018/04/f-3 ... mda-chief/

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 12 Apr 2018, 04:31
by steve2267
I thought we had hashed this all out over in the NORK thread... AIM-120 would have to be no more than ~50nm from the launch site to have a chance. Depending on where the launch sites are located in NORK... that would mean flying a missile CAP over NORK or PRC which we agreed would be very difficult to do.

A new fast shooter? Maybe. I nominate one of the hypersonic jobbies Raytheon or LM Skunkworks is cooking up. Still think you're going to have to be relatively close to the launch site... which to me means the new missile would have to be internal carriage. Now can you fit a Mach 6+ air launched ABM into the F-35 weapons bay? What would that be, about 24" max diameter, and 14-15' max length?

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 12 Apr 2018, 06:57
by sunstersun
F-35 + super long range new missile = :D

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 12 Apr 2018, 07:11
by Dragon029
F-35 + super quick* new missile = :D

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 12 Apr 2018, 09:55
by element1loop
No one said a missile, except the journo chumming.

Is F-35 DIRCM still cued for BkIV? If so, what if it's 30 kilowatts? With growth room. Let's see, flight of 16 x F-35s over central Norkistan:

16 x 30 = 480 kilowatts ... minus high-altitude path losses.

Imagine that focused on yer nozzle.

(presuming it even gets into the air, if the ISR and SA is all it's cracked up to be)

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 13 Apr 2018, 07:03
by hornetfinn
Why not use the currently available AMRAAM-ER missile for this at least initially? It uses ESSM rocket motor which gives much higher speed (Mach 4+ vs. something like Mach 2.5 or so) and range (about twice the range) than AMRAAM from surface launch and I'm sure it would have similarly better range and speed performance from air launch. It has dimensions that should be compatible with F-35 weapon bays and still be able to carry 2 AMRAAMs on bay doors.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 13 Apr 2018, 07:37
by popcorn
hornetfinn wrote:Why not use the currently available AMRAAM-ER missile for this at least initially? It uses ESSM rocket motor which gives much higher speed (Mach 4+ vs. something like Mach 2.5 or so) and range (about twice the range) than AMRAAM from surface launch and I'm sure it would have similarly better range and speed performance from air launch. It has dimensions that should be compatible with F-35 weapon bays and still be able to carry 2 AMRAAMs on bay doors.


Raytheon says "nyet"...

http://alert5.com/2017/11/17/raytheon-n ... amraam-er/

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 13 Apr 2018, 08:48
by hornetfinn
Probably because there has not been any real interest from services for such a weapon. AIM-120C7/D and Meteor are great air-to-air missiles and larger AMRAAM-ER would likely not give any major advantages against normal target set. I just think that it might be a right kind of missile for this particular need. It's fast and long ranged missile with great agility and has a large warhead. It is also about largest sized anti-air missile that can fit inside F-35. At least it could well be a great starting point for specialized anti-ballistic missile.

Of course there might be some technical issues with air-launched AMRAAM-ER and going for something else would be better. For example the rocket motor design might not be optimal for high-altitude launch.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 16 Apr 2018, 17:01
by stevedapirate
hornetfinn wrote:I just think that it might be a right kind of missile for this particular need. It's fast and long ranged missile with great agility and has a large warhead. It is also about largest sized anti-air missile that can fit inside F-35. At least it could well be a great starting point for specialized anti-ballistic missile.


I don't know that agility or a large warhead would be priorities if the goal is to hit ascending ballistic missiles. They don't engage in any radical maneuvers on the way up, and could be dispatched easily via a hit-to-kill dart to the boost segment.

Accordingly, I'd think you could save significant weight by eliminating the warhead and high agility requirements and focus on maximizing acceleration and ∆v.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 17 Apr 2018, 00:32
by popcorn
What about using Meteor in a lofted launch profile that maximizes range?

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 17 Apr 2018, 13:41
by hornetfinn
stevedapirate wrote:
hornetfinn wrote:I just think that it might be a right kind of missile for this particular need. It's fast and long ranged missile with great agility and has a large warhead. It is also about largest sized anti-air missile that can fit inside F-35. At least it could well be a great starting point for specialized anti-ballistic missile.


I don't know that agility or a large warhead would be priorities if the goal is to hit ascending ballistic missiles. They don't engage in any radical maneuvers on the way up, and could be dispatched easily via a hit-to-kill dart to the boost segment.

Accordingly, I'd think you could save significant weight by eliminating the warhead and high agility requirements and focus on maximizing acceleration and ∆v.


HTK works best when it can hit targets head-on to maximize kinetic energy on impact. This would be difficult to do with ascending ballistic missile and likely the hit would need to come from side. Of course it might work as even small amount of damage would likely kill the BM. That kind of new missile would need quite a long development time as that would be totally new kind of missile. I was pointing out a missile that might be good enough and much quicker solution to the problem as the missile actually exists right now. From all current missiles it has the best qualities for interception and there speed, agility and big warhead would be beneficial. Agility is probably the least needed for most BMs, but for example Iskander and Chinese DF-11 can make quite hard maneuvers even when ascending as these are not really ballistic missiles but can fly very different and alterable trajectories.


Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 18 Apr 2018, 01:20
by steve2267
As I paper-napkinned some numbers here: viewtopic.php?p=382962#p382962, a liquid-fueled ICBM is going to be out of reach much beyond 60-120sec. By that time, it will be Mach 3+ and accelerating, and be 80,000+ feet in altitude and climbing fast. A solid fueled ICBM will be harder still (higher velocity, acceleration and climb rate). I doubt a Mach 4 missile with lots of range buys you much -- by the time you traverse that extra range, even at Mach 4, the target is too high, too fast. I am guessing you need a Mach 6-8 missile if you want to increase ABM range to significantly more than 50nm, or you need to move to DEW's.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 18 Apr 2018, 02:26
by popcorn
There is talk of Japan considering a UAV fleet armed with a new high-speed missile specifically tasked to do the BPI mission. Possible joint venture opportunity.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 18 Apr 2018, 13:30
by taog
hornetfinn wrote:Why not use the currently available AMRAAM-ER missile for this at least initially? It uses ESSM rocket motor which gives much higher speed (Mach 4+ vs. something like Mach 2.5 or so) and range (about twice the range) than AMRAAM from surface launch and I'm sure it would have similarly better range and speed performance from air launch. It has dimensions that should be compatible with F-35 weapon bays and still be able to carry 2 AMRAAMs on bay doors.


NCADE : Don't forget me.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 18 Apr 2018, 13:41
by taog
steve2267 wrote:As I paper-napkinned some numbers here: viewtopic.php?p=382962#p382962, a liquid-fueled ICBM is going to be out of reach much beyond 60-120sec. By that time, it will be Mach 3+ and accelerating, and be 80,000+ feet in altitude and climbing fast. A solid fueled ICBM will be harder still (higher velocity, acceleration and climb rate). I doubt a Mach 4 missile with lots of range buys you much -- by the time you traverse that extra range, even at Mach 4, the target is too high, too fast. I am guessing you need a Mach 6-8 missile if you want to increase ABM range to significantly more than 50nm, or you need to move to DEW's.


viewtopic.php?f=58&t=53346&p=385176&sid=bbf1a84371e79b3a30780b7e1010556a#p385176

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 18 Jan 2019, 09:24
by spazsinbad
Pentagon considers an ICBM-killing weapon for the F-35, but is it affordable? [BEST READ at SOURCE]
17 Jan 2019 Valerie Insinna

"WASHINGTON — Over the next six months, the Defense Department will weigh whether to develop a new weapon for the F-35 fighter jet that will enable it to strike down an intercontinental ballistic missile in the early stages of flight. And it’s the Pentagon’s lead official for developmental technologies who is bullish on the prospect, telling reporters Jan. 17 that a new weapon could be both operationally effective and low cost.

"For certain regional geographies — North Korea comes to mind — we actually think it’s entirely possible and cost-effective to deploy what I will loosely call air-to-air interceptors, although possibly of new design, on advanced aircraft [and] using the aircraft as either sensor or weapons platforms to affect a missile intercept,” said Mike Griffin, under-secretary of defense for research and engineering. "We will, as the report implies, be studying that again, but I've seen recently any number of assessments, several assessments, which indicate that this is something we should be looking at."

The Trump administration’s Missile Defense Review, released Thursday after months of anticipation, carves out an enticing new potential role for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. The jet “has a capable sensor system that can detect the infrared signature of a boosting missile and its computers can identify the threatening missile’s location,” the review states. “It can track and destroy adversary cruise missiles today, and, in the future, can be equipped with a new or modified interceptor capable of shooting down adversary ballistic missiles in their boost phase and could be surged rapidly to hot spots to strengthen U.S. active defense capabilities and attack operations.”

The report gives the Air Force and Missile Defense Agency six months to deliver a report on how best to integrate the F-35 into the larger missile defense architecture….

...Throughout the Missile Defense Review, the Pentagon shows interest in developing boost-phase missile defenses, said Kingston Reif of the Arms Control Association. However, he pointed to a 2012 report by the National Academy of Sciences that said such technologies are not practical or feasible. “Long-standing challenges to effective boost-phase defense include the short time ICBMs are in powered flight, the need for the defense platform to be located very near launch sites, and the availability of faster-burning solid-fueled missiles as a countermeasure,” Reif said.

In short, F-35s, equipped with a new interceptor, would have to be located very close to missile launch sites to be within range of an intercept during the boost phase, and “it would be very expensive to keep the planes on extended patrol and take them away from other missions,” he said. “A drone would be a better option than the F-35. And even then there would still be big challenges as the 2012 National Academies report noted.”...

...Republican Rep. Duncan Hunter, citing research he apparently saw from Los Alamos National Laboratories, said the F-35 could use an AMRAAM to take down an ICBM in the boost phase, reported Inside Defense in November 2017. A December 2017 report from Defense One detailed a 2014 experiment conducted by the Missile Defense Agency and Northrop Grumman, which posited whether an F-35 could use its distributed aperture system to monitor and track ICBMs.

At least two F-35s would be needed in range to converge on the exact location of the target, Northrop officials told the news organization.

From there, the F-35s would be able to “[take] data from the sensors, [run] it through algorithms developed by Northrop and MDA’s Enterprise Sensor Lab, [generate] a 3D-moving picture of the missile’s trajectory, and [convey] it over the Link 16 tactical data exchange,” Defense One reported. With that capability, it’s possible the F-35 could be used to collect intelligence about an enemy’s ICBM movements and transmit targeting data to other U.S. systems used to intercept the missiles, such as ballistic missile destroyers or missile defense systems like the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense or Patriot systems."

Source: https://www.defensenews.com/air/2019/01 ... afford-it/

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 18 Jan 2019, 10:40
by garrya
It will be pretty cool if they design something similar to NCADE for F-35

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 18 Jan 2019, 13:42
by knowan
Best I can think to achieve that design goal is some sort of big honking missile carried externally, like an air lauched SM-3 or SM-6.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 18 Jan 2019, 17:24
by hythelday
knowan wrote:Best I can think to achieve that design goal is some sort of big honking missile carried externally, like an air lauched SM-3 or SM-6.


There was also an Air Launched Hit To Kill (PAC-3) once:


Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 18 Jan 2019, 18:38
by spazsinbad
MORE on story but less about F-35 because: AvWEAK: Missile Defense Review Directs Numerous Studies 17 Jan 2019

http://aviationweek.com/defense/missile ... us-studies

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 18 Jan 2019, 19:02
by spazsinbad
Good re-iteration of OLD NEWS in this article but similar story otherwise, I'll quote from OLD NEWS again....
Trump's Missile Defense Review Calls for Space Sensors, Drone Lasers
17 Jan 2019 Oriana Pawlyk

"...The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter:
The Pentagon wants to equip its latest and most advanced stealth fighter "with a new or modified interceptor capable of shooting down adversary ballistic missiles in their boost phase," the report states. While the idea has drawn skepticism, Northrop Grumman conducted an experiment with the Missile Defense Agency in 2014, saying the plane could be retrofitted to track intercontinental ballistic missile launches...." [quote link below]

OLD NEWS: 06 Dec 2017 "...The F-35 sensors aren’t meant to replace the infrared satellites that detect launches, or the sea-based X-Band Radar that can feed targeting data about missile launches to destroyers . Rather, Northrop officials said, the DAS data would help the other missile-defense gear get a targeting track on a missile more quickly, improving the odds of nailing the shot. (You also need two of them in the air for triangulation.)

“That information can go straight to the Patriot [missile system], THAAD, or anywhere else, who has communication with that platform,” John “Bama” Montgomery, a business development manager at Northrop’s ISR & Targeting Division, said on Tuesday. “You can give that information to a shooter. That shooter now has information to go and put his information in the right place. Thus the radar doesn’t have to search. It goes, ‘I know where it is; it’s right there.’”

The end result is a “tactically significant” improvement in targeting, Montgomery said. Just how significant? It took several years to figure that out, and that’s one reason why the news is only being released now. “We wanted to get our understanding of how this could change the battlefield. We’ve since done a series of modeling and [simulation] events and teamed with other governmental partners and industry.” Those numbers, he said, are classified. But: “I can tell you right now that this system, as depicted here, really does help the ballistic missile environment.” https://www.defenseone.com/technology/2 ... ms/144365/


Source: https://www.military.com/dodbuzz/2019/0 ... asers.html

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 18 Jan 2019, 20:34
by usnvo
A F-35 ABM capability is valuable as long as it doesn't take too much money away from other requirements.

I would expect that it would be fairly straightforward to program a F-35 to be able to identify and engage a climbing ICBM/IRBM with a AIM-120 while it is in the atmosphere and not going much beyond Mach 2. It should just be a matter of programming your data fusion engine to identify a ICBM (or similiar missile) launch, project the trajectory to the intercept point (this is actually pretty hard since you can't use the missiles actual course and speed at anytime or you get in a tail chase as the target is both climbing and accelerating at the same time), and program your AIM-120 to get ahead and above the target for intercept. You might also need some changes on the AIM-120 intercept and fuzing algorithms. Having said that, it will give you a fairly short ranged intercept capability. It is also inexpensive, being purely software, and easy to test, just try to track and/or shoot down a Minuteman III or Trident D-5 OT launch.

There are probably two conditions that you would need to plan for;
- The US is at war with the side possessing said ballistic missiles
- The US is in a state of heightened tension with the side possessing said ballistic missiles.

In either case, the ability to detect and track the target has utility. With the proper connectivity, the F-35 can effectively contribute to the early detection and tracking of the missile even if they can't do anything about it. Additionally, they are not vulnerable like a E-3, RC-135, or other large aircraft is.

In the first, wartime case, even a limited engagement range, say 20nm from the launch site, can give you a tactically significant capability. F-35s will be hunting the silos, missiles, and TELs, so they should be nearby to the launch site, there should be a lot of them, they are carrying AIM-120s anyway, and they have weapons free allowing for a very rapid decision loop. I mean, missiles are pretty distinctive and it is not as if the other side is launching space tourists or anything. And being stealth assets, the other side can not just wait until they leave since they can't be sure if they are detecting them or not.

In the second case, the capability to engage is probably limited without a new missile, which is where big bucks start to come into the picture. However, even with a limited capability, you have a strong psychological deterrent. Much like a submarine that the enemy can't find, a stealth fighter forces the enemy to assume it is potentially overhead. So it can act as a deterrent even if it is not there at all.

The real question is how much is it going to cost.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 18 Jan 2019, 20:53
by marsavian
hythelday wrote:
knowan wrote:Best I can think to achieve that design goal is some sort of big honking missile carried externally, like an air lauched SM-3 or SM-6.


There was also an Air Launched Hit To Kill (PAC-3) once:



That could be a simple external solution but the F-35 will not really be stealthy lumping those around. Internally a solution could be marriying this to the eventual AMRAAM replacement and would ultimately dictate a multi stage rocket missile which would benefit in both altitude/speed performance against BMs and range/maneuverability performance against aircraft/missiles. Seems like it could be another requirement to put into the replacement specification. You could get serious hypersonic speeds out of a multi-stage rocket missile so would be useful too against hypersonic missiles. Now you just have to fit it into an F-22/F-35 missile bay which would imply going wide rather than long like a Phoenix.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 18 Jan 2019, 21:54
by spazsinbad
US Air Force looks at using F-35 as ballistic missile interceptor
17 Jan 2019 Garrett Reim

"The US Air Force and Missile Defense Agency (MDA) are examining integrating the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II into the US ballistic missile defense system....

...The Missile Defense Review also noted the potential uses of airborne lasers as a counter ballistic missile weapon.

“Intercepting offensive missiles in their boostphase (before the re-entry vehicle separates from the booster) using kinetic interceptors and/or directed energy would increase the likelihood of successfully countering the threat,” says the report. That would “complicate an aggressor’s attack calculus by reducing its confidence in its missile attack planning, and reduce the number of midcourse or terminal active defense interceptors needed to destroy the adversary’s remaining offensive missiles.”

Using the F-35 as a platform for shooting lasers at launching ballistic missiles was not mentioned in the review, though the MDA’s Low-Power Laser Demonstrator programme was noted. In September, as part of that programme the agency awarded nearly $70 million in contracts to Lockheed Martin, Boeing and General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems to further develop airborne anti-ballistic missile lasers."

Source: https://www.flightglobal.com/news/artic ... il-455100/

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 19 Jan 2019, 01:47
by steve2267
I've been tossing this around my head today... for a first cut, I'd look at having Raytheon chop an SM3-IIA down to 161" length. My swag is you could get to Mach 10, and maybe 100-200nm range. Rather than a tail chase, which I see as not possible... I think the thing to do is to get a good track, then try to hang the kinetic kill vehicle in space in front of the boosting missile. That is... try to get on a reverse ballistic path. Not sure that is even doable. A tail chase you are going to lose. With something a LOT larger than AIM-120, I am guestimating you have 2, 3 minutes tops to make the intercept. The good news, from a side intercept angle, is that the boosting missile is NOT going to be able to maneuver. From (hopefully prior) intelligence of test missile shots, you should have a good idea of time vs altitude vs Mach, so that gives you a decent idea how to extrapolate the boost trajectory and figure where you have to have your interceptor by when.

The problem of a "chopped" SM-IIA is lessened to some extent in that you don't need a booster to get you from SL to 50,000ft... assuming you can CAP the enema missile launch fields at around 50K.

An SM-6 appears to max out around 3.5 Mach, so I don't think that booster will work.

However, if you can't get high enough, fast enough with the "chopped" SM3-IIA to deploy the KKV, and you have to keep a payload fairing at the front from an aero standpoint, then switching in the 13" dia SM6 AIM-120 seeker section + guidance might be an option. But that is a YUGE swag.

The Lightning's weps bays appears wide enough, but would be sure nice if they were about 7.5' longer if you wanted to tuck in a hypersonic AGM / AAM or ABM.

FWIW.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 19 Jan 2019, 01:56
by steve2267
Something like a B21, perhaps unmanned, probably has the weapons bay size to fit several such ABM's based off an SM-3 IIA/B weapon. Let it go hang up around 60K 4-500nm down range flying racetracks...

Or put a platform with the F-35 sensor suite up there just as a "radar / EOTS" picket plane.

OR... if you do use F-35s as a BM CAP / picket... once tracks are established and broadcast to the net... loose the Panthers on the missile launch fields and all other goodies in that area.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 19 Jan 2019, 02:57
by usnvo
steve2267 wrote:OR... if you do use F-35s as a BM CAP / picket... once tracks are established and broadcast to the net... loose the Panthers on the missile launch fields and all other goodies in that area.


I would think you could combine TEL hunting with ABM missions. Load up your F-35s with SDBIIs and have them operate in pairs, one at 50kft on ABM mission, one lower hunting TELs in their designated boxes. Or, if the threat requires, have them operate in fours in their boxes. Once the TEL hunter is winchester, rotate positions. Ideally you catch the missile before launch but if not, you have an F-35, possibly two, that can fire two AIM-120s at it and another F-35 that can pounce on the TEL.

You couldn't guarantee success, but you could attrite the launchers and reduce the number of missiles to be intercepted later, and not just ICBMs, you would also be in position to take out anything from SRBMs to IRBMs.

Even with each box being 40nm x 40nm, you could probably cover all of the likely launch areas in NK with 12 aircraft.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 21 Jan 2019, 21:28
by spazsinbad
Pentagon Unveils Missile Defense Review, Urging Investment in New System
17 Jan 2019 Brian Everstine

"...The report highlights the Air Force and the North American Aerospace Defense Command’s effort to upgrade the aircraft that monitor the US airspace with new sensors that can track and target offensive air threats. Additionally, the military needs to progress the F-35’s capability to track and target offensive missile threats, the review states.

Michael Griffin, the undersecretary of defense for research and engineering, told reporters the F-35 could be used in certain geographies—“North Korea comes to mind” —as a cost-effective way to employ what he “loosely calls air-to-air interceptors.” The F-35 has sensors that could be effective, though new weapons systems would need to be studied to allow the aircraft to target ballistic missiles. “We’re looking at possibly newly developed missiles, I don’t think an AMRAAM from an F-35 is likely to do the job,” Griffin said. “But that doesn’t mean that no missile launched from an airplane could ever do the job.”

USAF Lt. Gen. Samuel Greaves, the director of the Missile Defense Agency, told reporters that MDA and the Pentagon will soon integrate F-35s into missile tests to assess their capability. Because of the total number of jets the military will field, along with its sensor capability and integration into multi-domain command and control, it could be a “very powerful” capability to add to the missile defense system. "We will test it to verify if it works, if it comes with limitations, or if it doesn’t work,” Greaves said.

The Air Force has six months to study and present a report on how it could integrate its F-35s into missile defense, both for homeland defense and to defend regional partners, the review states...."

Graphic: "The Defense Department's Missile Defense Review, unveiled Thursday, outlines a planned schedule for new missile defense systems. This includes the demonstration of laser systems on remotely piloted aircraft, space-based sensors, and defenses from hypersonic glide vehicles. Defense Department graphic" http://www.airforcemag.com/Features/Pub ... DR.jpg.png


Source: http://www.airforcemag.com/Features/Pag ... ystem.aspx

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 25 Feb 2019, 21:40
by spazsinbad
The 'RAVIN' MAVIN' has a go for the thread - best read at source. Kris Osborn now writes for the LEXINGTON INSTITUTE.
Pentagon Developing F-35s to Kill ICBMs
25 Feb 2019 Kris Osborn - Warrior Maven

"...The F-35, officials explain, could use a “kinetic” solution wherein it fires upon and destroys a launching ICBM -- or a “sensor” solution where it “cues missile defense systems,” locating or stopping attacks earlier than might otherwise be possible. ”We are now looking at how we could close the kill chain on that process,” officials familiar with the ongoing exploration told Warrior Maven.

One senior DoD official explained that the prospect of F-35 missile defense would likely hinge upon key intelligence information; should there be an indication or concern regarding a possible enemy launch, F-35C-armed carriers or other F-35s in the vicinity could use speed, stealth and sensor technology to find, ID and destroy an ICBM.

The prospect of using an F-35 for this purpose introduces a range of defensive possibilities not yet part of the Pentagon’s missile defense arsenal.

... a group of F-35s could potentially form some kind of networked “relay system” using the Multi-function Advanced Data Link (MADL) to deliver threat information across a fleet of aircraft in position to warn US missile defense systems. This MADL data link, which enables a group of F-35s to all see the same thing in real-time while conducting a mission, could potentially extend the range of systems able to find or detect an enemy ICBM. It goes without saying that the earlier Combatant Commanders and decision-makers learn of an attacking ICBM, the more time they have to consider and implement countermeasures or launch a counterattack.

ICBM launch points developed by potential adversaries are often deliberately lodged deep inland and heavily defended by air-defenses, making them harder for certain weapons and attack assets to reach.... ...an F-35 might bring an ability to use stealth, speed and maneuverability to operate above heavily defended inland areas to find, chase and destroy mobile launchers....

...Destroying ICBMs is something quite different than tracking or intercepting a short or medium range ballistic missile. The F-35 is already developed in this capacity; the F-35 has been tested as an aerial node for the Navy’s Naval Integrated Fire Control - Counter Air system. This technology, now deployed, uses ship-based Aegis radar, an aerial sensor node and a guided SM-6 missile to knock out attacking missiles from ranges beyond-the-horizon. Since its inception, NIFC-CA used an E-2 Hawkeye surveillance plane as the aerial node. Now, the system can use a far more capable F-35 as the aerial sensor."

Source: https://defensemaven.io/warriormaven/fu ... lAgE2Od0A/

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 25 Feb 2019, 21:43
by sferrin
I could see the F-35 feeding info into the "cloud" but there's no missile it could use to fire at ICBMs. A shame they killed NCADE (though, to be fair, it's unlikely it could do the job anyway).

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 25 Feb 2019, 21:50
by SpudmanWP
Put the NCADE front-end on an ESSM back-end

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 25 Feb 2019, 22:52
by marauder2048
SpudmanWP wrote:Put the NCADE front-end on an ESSM back-end


ESSM's motor probably isn't suited for the temperatures at the
altitudes where NCADE needs to operate.

What hurt NCADE was the liquid upper stage and the Navy's allergy to liquid propellants
aboard ship.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 25 Feb 2019, 23:04
by SpudmanWP
Maybe a CUDA frontend (with IR Seeker) and an ESSM backend?

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 25 Feb 2019, 23:42
by marauder2048
SpudmanWP wrote:Maybe a CUDA frontend (with IR Seeker) and an ESSM backend?


Given that the Navy did not competitively award the AARGM-ER propulsion stack, I hope
that means that NG's stack is ready-ish.

I suspect CUDA would not have the divert capability at the higher altitudes.

But that doesn't mean you couldn't have two weapons: one for endo and one for exo.
As opposed to NCADE which was a THAAD-style endo/exo interceptor.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 26 Feb 2019, 02:42
by crosshairs
I don't have patience to read this thread the whole way through. But the F-35 as a anti ballistic missile platform is going to require 2 things. 1) to be close to the ballistic missile launch position, and 2) a hypersonic weapon.

Item 2 can be engineered. Item 1 depends on being deep inside enemy territory and being near the launching missile. Is an F-35 going to penetrate china and loiter near a missile launch site? No. Maybe a small nation like Iran, but Russia or China, no.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 26 Feb 2019, 03:30
by steve2267
crosshairs wrote:I don't have patience to read this thread the whole way through. But the F-35 as a anti ballistic missile platform is going to require 2 things. 1) to be close to the ballistic missile launch position, and 2) a hypersonic weapon.

Item 2 can be engineered. Item 1 depends on being deep inside enemy territory and being near the launching missile. Is an F-35 going to penetrate china and loiter near a missile launch site? No. Maybe a small nation like Iran, but Russia or China, no.


Previous discussion here and possibly in a different thread centered on the context of North Korea. Iran might also be appropos. I do not recall anyone suggesting F-35's capping Russian or Chinese missile fields. There were also some swags on how close an F-35 would have to be to have any chance whatsoever at engaging a climbing ICBM. I seem to recall the numbers were around 50-75nm of the launch site, downrange, and that an AIM-120 would have to engage somewhere in the 40-60,000 ft altitude range. HUGE swags here. Really YUGE. I think the idea was it would only make sense if there was a shooting war going on. Some aircraft might be assigned to try to CAP or OCA the missile fields whilst everyone else went hunting to try to put bombs on silos. FWIW.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 26 Feb 2019, 03:35
by steve2267
marauder2048 wrote:
SpudmanWP wrote:Maybe a CUDA frontend (with IR Seeker) and an ESSM backend?


Given that the Navy did not competitively award the AARGM-ER propulsion stack, I hope
that means that NG's stack is ready-ish.

I suspect CUDA would not have the divert capability at the higher altitudes.

But that doesn't mean you couldn't have two weapons: one for endo and one for exo.
As opposed to NCADE which was a THAAD-style endo/exo interceptor.


I am confused by your statement I emboldened. How would miniature solid rocket motors firing transversely to the missiles longitudinal axis NOT have "divert capability"? If anything... divert motors maintain, possibly enhance, controllability and maneuverability as the air gets thinner the higher it flies. The aerodynamic effectiveness of fins and cross-body flow decrease with altitude, but divert motors should be good to go. What am I missing?

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 26 Feb 2019, 03:37
by marauder2048
crosshairs wrote:I don't have patience to read this thread the whole way through. But the F-35 as a anti ballistic missile platform is going to require 2 things. 1) to be close to the ballistic missile launch position, and 2) a hypersonic weapon.

Item 2 can be engineered. Item 1 depends on being deep inside enemy territory and being near the launching missile. Is an F-35 going to penetrate china and loiter near a missile launch site? No. Maybe a small nation like Iran, but Russia or China, no.



The existence and proliferation of an air-launched boost-phase interceptor might still have a pindown effect on
enemy launchers in Russia and China since they would have to treat any aircraft (say an intermittent contact)
in the vicinity of a launcher as a threat.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 26 Feb 2019, 03:45
by steve2267
marauder2048 wrote:The existence and proliferation of an air-launched boost-phase interceptor might still have a pindown effect on
enemy launchers in Russia and China since they would have to treat any aircraft (say an intermittent contact)
in the vicinity of a launcher as a threat.


I might buy what you're selling if and when the B-21 is well into service.

IMO, the problem with your statement is range -- you seem to be suggesting that F-35's could be lurking "near" Russian or Chinese missile fields that have got to be at least a 1000 miles from the nearest border or coastline. If not 1500 miles. F-35 doesn't have the gas to fly that far and orbit. Unless Skonkworks has developed and deployed a super stealth tanker. But then... why not sling the air-launched boost-phase interceptors under said super stealth tanker?

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 26 Feb 2019, 05:59
by marauder2048
steve2267 wrote:
marauder2048 wrote:
SpudmanWP wrote:Maybe a CUDA frontend (with IR Seeker) and an ESSM backend?


Given that the Navy did not competitively award the AARGM-ER propulsion stack, I hope
that means that NG's stack is ready-ish.

I suspect CUDA would not have the divert capability at the higher altitudes.

But that doesn't mean you couldn't have two weapons: one for endo and one for exo.
As opposed to NCADE which was a THAAD-style endo/exo interceptor.


I am confused by your statement I emboldened. How would miniature solid rocket motors firing transversely to the missiles longitudinal axis NOT have "divert capability"? If anything... divert motors maintain, possibly enhance, controllability and maneuverability as the air gets thinner the higher it flies. The aerodynamic effectiveness of fins and cross-body flow decrease with altitude, but divert motors should be good to go. What am I missing?


Divert velocity. The ACMs on Cuda aren't intended to achieve that as much as they are
responsiveness early and late in flight but only comparatively low in the atmosphere.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 26 Feb 2019, 06:31
by marauder2048
steve2267 wrote:
marauder2048 wrote:The existence and proliferation of an air-launched boost-phase interceptor might still have a pindown effect on
enemy launchers in Russia and China since they would have to treat any aircraft (say an intermittent contact)
in the vicinity of a launcher as a threat.


I might buy what you're selling if and when the B-21 is well into service.

IMO, the problem with your statement is range -- you seem to be suggesting that F-35's could be lurking "near" Russian or Chinese missile fields that have got to be at least a 1000 miles from the nearest border or coastline. If not 1500 miles. F-35 doesn't have the gas to fly that far and orbit. Unless Skonkworks has developed and deployed a super stealth tanker. But then... why not sling the air-launched boost-phase interceptors under said super stealth tanker?


Or the B-2. Or any aircraft (or expendable/deception jammer simulating that aircraft) that's managed to penetrate.
Some of the interceptors that have 5 km/s Vbo and 2 km/s divert are in the 1100 lbs/14 feet length
variety which can be carried on just about anything.

But you need these interceptors to be widely proliferated for the threat to be convincing.

The argument for fast jets for boost phase intercept is that they can quickly maneuver/climb/accelerate
to shoot/and or get an improved sensor read which helps the shot and can defend themselves.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 26 Feb 2019, 14:45
by steve2267
marauder2048 wrote:
Or the B-2. Or any aircraft (or expendable/deception jammer simulating that aircraft) that's managed to penetrate.
Some of the interceptors that have 5 km/s Vbo and 2 km/s divert are in the 1100 lbs/14 feet length
variety
which can be carried on just about anything.


I am unfamiliar with any missiles around 14' in length that can do 17 Mach, not including additional divert velocity. Are these in production? Experimental / development stage? Or just on the drawing board?

I have mused about the flight portion (above the booster segment) of an SM-3 Blk IA/IB or Blk IIA fitting into an F-35 weps bay (161" or 13.4'), but think they would still be too long. Or are you writing about a CUDA or something like it atop an ESSM stage?

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 27 Feb 2019, 01:00
by marauder2048
All airborne boost phase interceptors are drawing board albeit with components or critical technologies
tested to varying degrees.

The interceptor I'm describing is from Garwin:

https://fas.org/rlg/refine.pdf

A 2 km/sec divert velocity is believed to be attainable for a KV with the NCADE upper stage
configuration; the axial propulsion velocity seems to be attainable if you hit the KV weight.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 27 Feb 2019, 01:31
by steve2267
marauder2048 wrote:All airborne boost phase interceptors are drawing board albeit with components or critical technologies
tested to varying degrees.

The interceptor I'm describing is from Garwin:

https://fas.org/rlg/refine.pdf

A 2 km/sec divert velocity is believed to be attainable for a KV with the NCADE upper stage
configuration; the axial propulsion velocity seems to be attainable if you hit the KV weight.


Thanks for the link. I've got a bit of reading to do now.

I must admit, I am rather dubious that something like NCADE in an AMRAAM airframe can reach 5km/s. Perhaps the ALHTK, based on a PAC-3, can get close. My ideas I have written about earlier revolved around leveraging the SM-3 Blk IIA/B, and chopping that down so that it might fit inside the F-35 weapons bays. Width-wise, it oughta fit. But even if something like a chopped SM-3 fits in an F-35... an aircraft like the B-21 with much longer weapons bays and much longer loiter times would seem to be a better airborne launch vehicle for defense of ICBM's, such as from North Korea. Then F-35's can be free to roam around and directly attack the launch sites. But even there, one probably requires the range of a B-21 to go missile hunting deep within other nation states. FWIW.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 27 Feb 2019, 09:00
by marauder2048
It's more a JSOW-sized weapon with an NCADE upper stage though I've seen
some wild variations in Vbo even for the "classic" NCADE + AMRAAM booster stack.

I tend to think that fast jets like the F-35 might still be preferred because they are much less
reliant on offboard cues, operate in pairs so stereo ranging is there, can readily position for
a shot and can impart their higher velocity to the interceptor.

We've talked mainly about boost phase intercept but there's no reason the F-35 wouldn't
be very good in the terminal phase as well with a shortened PAC-3 MSE like interceptor.

Corbett and Zarchan have a number of studies out there on these topics; Corbett was the
NCADE program manager at MDA.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 27 Feb 2019, 22:37
by usnvo
marauder2048 wrote:It's more a JSOW-sized weapon with an NCADE upper stage though I've seen
some wild variations in Vbo even for the "classic" NCADE + AMRAAM booster stack.

I tend to think that fast jets like the F-35 might still be preferred because they are much less
reliant on offboard cues, operate in pairs so stereo ranging is there, can readily position for
a shot and can impart their higher velocity to the interceptor.

We've talked mainly about boost phase intercept but there's no reason the F-35 wouldn't
be very good in the terminal phase as well with a shortened PAC-3 MSE like interceptor.

Corbett and Zarchan have a number of studies out there on these topics; Corbett was the
NCADE program manager at MDA.


I think there are two components to using the F-35 in an anti-ballistic missile role.

First is early detection and tracking. As previously demonstrated, the F-35 sensors were able to track boosting missiles from extended ranges. This is not unique to the F-35, but a combination of stealth, DAS/EOTS, sensor fusion, networking, and satellite communications allows for rapid detection, identification, tracking, and reporting of the missiles. This is a valuable capability regardless of the ability to shoot down the missile.

Second is elimination of the missile. As I see it, there are actually three components here.
A. Before launch. The F-35s is the most likely assets to be assigned to do "Scud Hunting". So beyond already being in the most likely places (at least what the US thinks is the most likely location) for detection, it can also attack TELs.
B. Within the atmosphere. Because of A, the F-35 is most likely to be in position to destroy a boosting missile with a slightly modified AAM. While you can't guarantee you will be directly over a missile on launch, you may be close enough. And, since you will probably have simplified ROE (anything launching is hostile), quick OODA loop for launch.
C. Engagement outside the normal weapons envelope. This will require a new missile, but you don't have to have to plan to kill the missile in space. Even if you could just kill the missile while it is boosting and under 250,000ft or so, you still would have an excellent chance to engage, especially given you are in the area and actively looking.

So what kind of load-out would be required?
The first mission doesn't require any weapons, just an expedited reporting capability. Not every F-35 would use the capability, but if you were in the launch area, you would be primed to report (or more likely your sensor fusion engine would do it for you)
The second mission would probably require SDBII, AMRAAM, and something better, which I will call Advanced Boost Phase Interceptor or ABPI. So, a pair of F-35As with 4 SDBII, 2 AMRAAM, and 1-2 ABPI each could probably cover a 40nm x 40nm box with a significant chance of finding the TEL and/or engaging the missile at least once.

At the very least, they could likely detect, identify, start tracking, and report the missile within seconds of launch.

If nothing else, just the ability to claim that the F-35s are overhead and can disrupt the launch will have a deterrent effect on the enemy, much as the threat of mining or fear of the presence of submarines restricts seaborne options. In fact, even without any F-35s so deployed, the possibility they could be there makes for great information warfare.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 27 Feb 2019, 23:44
by sprstdlyscottsmn
A dorsal laser turret firing upward from 40,000ft would have some nice range wouldn't it?

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 28 Feb 2019, 03:07
by marauder2048
Given the 100% failure rate achieved by the 1991 Scud Hunt in destroying TELs,
I'm going to suggest that left-of-launch is really hard given that it's easy and relatively cheap
for the opponent to proliferate decoys, employ cover, concealment and terminal defenses.

Also, I'm trying to recall but I think the orthodox Air Force view is that a TEL is only counted as
destroyed if it's flipped on its back or completely disintegrated.

OTOH, there's no convincing decoy for a boosting ballistic missile. There's no cover.
There's no concealment. And no terminal defenses. That leaves evasive maneuvers
and other burn profile games that impose a cost on the ballistic missile in payload, range
and $$ and can probably still be accommodated by the divert capability described above.

IIRC, hardening against lasers with improved materials and or rolling the missile during
boost imposed a much lower penalty than the countermeasures for defeating a
kinetic energy threat.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 28 Feb 2019, 04:38
by popcorn
Scud hunting will be very different from days past. Potential battlefields will have been under very Intense scrutiny in the age of Big Data. The F-35 is just the cherry on Top of the sundae.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 28 Feb 2019, 16:04
by sferrin
popcorn wrote:Scud hunting will be very different from days past. Potential battlefields will have been under very Intense scrutiny in the age of Big Data. The F-35 is just the cherry on Top of the sundae.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gorgon_Stare

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 28 Feb 2019, 19:54
by usnvo
Reuters has an article on this subject.

One of the interesting comments.

“You would need to be very close to the launch site, within North Korea itself, said physicist Laura Grego, who studies missile defense at the Union of Concerned Scientists (editorial note here, these are the same "experts" who claimed it would be impossible to hit a ballistic missile in flight). Grego said that even if the air-to-air missile traveled at five times the speed of sound, the F-35 would need to be within about 50 miles of the missile, “probably closer, to be realistic.”

That gives a huge advantage to the stealthy F-35 which could get much closer to a possible launch area than a non-stealth aircraft.

“This is one of the advantages of the F-35,” said retired U.S. general David Deptula. He added that the radar-evading jets “can get in much closer to an adversary launch area than ... a non-stealthy aircraft.”

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-nort ... SKCN1QG0JC

While the Reuters article kind of ignores the second day of the conflict role, that is the one I see as the most important for the F-35, at least in a Kinetic role. Even if you can't stop the first one, you are going to want to suppress any later launches, and that would seem where the F-35 offers a real compelling advantage. And it wouldn't just be ICBMs, it would apply equally to SRBMs, MRBMs, IRBMs, and ICBMs. And the fact you can do it while you are doing a mission you would be assigned anyway with weapons you would be carrying anyway is a real plus.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 28 Feb 2019, 20:26
by usnvo
marauder2048 wrote:Given the 100% failure rate achieved by the 1991 Scud Hunt in destroying TELs,
I'm going to suggest that left-of-launch is really hard given that it's easy and relatively cheap
for the opponent to proliferate decoys, employ cover, concealment and terminal defenses.

Also, I'm trying to recall but I think the orthodox Air Force view is that a TEL is only counted as
destroyed if it's flipped on its back or completely disintegrated.

OTOH, there's no convincing decoy for a boosting ballistic missile. There's no cover.
There's no concealment. And no terminal defenses. That leaves evasive maneuvers
and other burn profile games that impose a cost on the ballistic missile in payload, range
and $$ and can probably still be accommodated by the divert capability described above.


Finding TELs will be hard, but there are still going to be aircraft assigned to that mission and those aircraft are most likely going to be stealth aircraft, so F-35s are probably the aircraft used. Additionally, the combination of sensors and the fusion of those sensors available to the F-35 will make it somewhat easier but it will still be hard. But even if you can only find the TEL from the smoke trail, you can fire off a couple of SDBIIs to kill it after you launch on the missile itself.

I doubt there is anything that a boosting missile can do that will materially effect the Pk of a AAM from approaching one. They can't speed up, can't slow down, can't make a high G turn, can't see the missile coming, can't fire decoys, etc. If you are close enough and fire soon enough, it is pretty well dead absent a AAM failure (which is why you fire two!).

marauder2048 wrote:IIRC, hardening against lasers with improved materials and or rolling the missile during
boost imposed a much lower penalty than the countermeasures for defeating a
kinetic energy threat.


I think weather is probably your worst obstacle as well as just developing the laser power. The problem with most counter-measures against lasers is that they have never been developed, let alone tested. So effectively evaluating how well they would work is difficult. For instance, rolling the missile, while possible, would dramatically complicate the guidance as well as being less valuable against a really powerful laser. Given the need for maximum lightness and the forces involved in the launch, it doesn't take much to make one fail.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 28 Feb 2019, 21:17
by steve2267
usnvo wrote:
I doubt there is anything that a boosting missile can do that will materially effect the Pk of a AAM from approaching one. They can't speed up, can't slow down, can't make a high G turn, can't see the missile coming, can't fire decoys, etc. If you are close enough and fire soon enough, it is pretty well dead absent a AAM failure (which is why you fire two!).


Actually... they can speed up -- they are accelerating all the time. And climbing, faster and faster.

My swag estimates you have 60 seconds, 120 tops to affect a kill of a climbing ballistic missile before they will be too high, and too fast to intercept with a garden variety air-to-air missile. After that they are either too fast, but most probably too high to intercept. Several factors affect this time window including whether the BM is liquid fueled, or uses solid propellant, and how far the intercepting aircraft is from the launch site.

usnvo wrote:I think weather is probably your worst obstacle as well as just developing the laser power. The problem with most counter-measures against lasers is that they have never been developed, let alone tested. So effectively evaluating how well they would work is difficult. For instance, rolling the missile, while possible, would dramatically complicate the guidance as well as being less valuable against a really powerful laser. Given the need for maximum lightness and the forces involved in the launch, it doesn't take much to make one fail.


Rolling the missile will make life a little harder for the flight controls engineer... but dramatically so? That may be open to some debate. If the missile pitches to its programmed flight path trajectory and flies a 0° alpha trajectory, then rolling is probably not as big a deal. IMO & FWIW.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 28 Feb 2019, 21:32
by SpudmanWP
I'm thinking something like NCADE based on a CUDA-like upper with a ESSM-type lower and make both of them Gel propellants.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 28 Feb 2019, 21:51
by sferrin
SpudmanWP wrote:I'm thinking something like NCADE based on a CUDA-like upper with a ESSM-type lower and make both of them Gel propellants.


Ahem:

Capture.PNG

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 28 Feb 2019, 22:28
by SpudmanWP
Fanart or program? That booster looks too skinny to be ESSM (10 in vs AMRAAM 7in) but it may be a scale thing.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 28 Feb 2019, 23:02
by sferrin
SpudmanWP wrote:Fanart or program? That booster looks too skinny to be ESSM (10 in vs AMRAAM 7in) but it may be a scale thing.


Something I threw together. Scale is exact. The strakes give the illusion that it's smaller in diameter. Look at the area between the tail fins and the strakes.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 28 Feb 2019, 23:13
by SpudmanWP
Me likey

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 28 Feb 2019, 23:32
by sferrin
SpudmanWP wrote:Me likey


PM incoming.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 01 Mar 2019, 21:39
by usnvo
steve2267 wrote:Actually... they can speed up -- they are accelerating all the time. And climbing, faster and faster.

My swag estimates you have 60 seconds, 120 tops to affect a kill of a climbing ballistic missile before they will be too high, and too fast to intercept with a garden variety air-to-air missile.


But they speed up in an easily calculated manner. They can't suddenly add 5Gs. Compared to what the AAM can do, sitting duck. I agree on time, although the Reuters article indicated 200 seconds. That just seems way too long. I figure an engagement zone of 20-25nm around the aircraft, probably an additional 10nm if you could reach up to 200kft or so with a purpose built boost phase interceptor.

steve2267 wrote:Rolling the missile will make life a little harder for the flight controls engineer... but dramatically so? That may be open to some debate. If the missile pitches to its programmed flight path trajectory and flies a 0° alpha trajectory, then rolling is probably not as big a deal. IMO & FWIW.


Except no one has ever done it and all of the launches I have seen require continuous angle changes during most of the boost phase. And how fast are you spinning? Even 30RPM seems like it would probably be too slow since all you have to do with the laser is weaken the structural integrity. And you would have to do it all the time because you would never know if you were going to be engaged or not.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 17 Sep 2019, 10:25
by doge
This has not been posted yet? 8) I'm wondering where to post it, so I will post here.
https://news.lockheedmartin.com/2019-09 ... assets_all
F-35(sensor) → U-2(HUB) → Station(MD)
...Beautiful relay. 8)
Lockheed Martin Skunk Works®' Project Riot Demonstrates Multi-Domain Operations
Demonstration Further Proves F-35's Role as the Keystone of the Joint Force and U-2's Ability to Rapidly Field Capabilities for the Future
PALMDALE, Calif., Sept. 16, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) Skunk Works®, the Missile Defense Agency and the U.S. Air Force successfully connected an F-35, U-2 and a multi-domain ground station in a ground-breaking test demonstrating multi-domain operations and the secure distribution of sensitive information across multiple platforms.

During the demonstration, called Project Riot, an F-35 detected a long-range missile launch with its onboard sensors and shared the information through the U-2 to the air defense commander on the ground, enabling the commander to quickly make the decision to target the threat. This next-level connectivity reduces the data-to-decision timeline from minutes to seconds, which is critical in fighting today's adversaries and advanced threats.

In partnership with the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center at Hanscom Air Force Base, Massachusetts, and the Missile Defense Agency, Skunk Works' Project Riot builds on a series of open systems architecture demonstrations proving how incremental increases in capability can be rapidly fielded to enable a connected network across air, ground, sea, space and cyber domains.

"This demonstration continues our commitment to provide complete battlespace awareness and seamless interoperability to enable multi-domain operations," said John Clark, vice president of ISR & UAS at Lockheed Martin Skunk Works. "With its long-range standoff sensors, on-board processing and ability to operate in and around contested environments, the U-2 continues to play a critical role in demonstrating new capabilities today, while transforming operations for tomorrow's battlespace."

Leveraging common industry standards to drive down cost and shorten schedules, the team achieved four mission critical data points in less than four months:
    ・Demonstrated the ability to leverage F-35 sensor data for missile defense
    ・Leveraged the modernized U-2's extensive payload capacity, modular design and open architecture to provide beyond line of sight communications between the F-35 and a multi-domain ground station
    ・Established two new data paths to securely transmit 5th generation sensor data at multiple levels of security to the warfighter, enabling a multi-domain network of legacy and 5th generation systems
    ・Disseminated 5th generation data using the Air Force's Universal Command and Control Interface and Open Mission Systems standards for faster capability deployment and seamless connection between systems
"The F-35, with its advanced sensors and connectivity, is able to gather and seamlessly share critical information enabling the joint force to be safer and more effective," said Greg Ulmer, Lockheed Martin vice president and general manager for the F-35 program. "No other fighter jet in the world has this capability – and this test was a critical step on the path to unlocking its full potential for multi-domain operations."

This demonstration builds on successful flight tests completed since 2013 that establish the foundation for a distributed, systems-of-systems architecture in the not-too-distant future.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 22 Nov 2019, 10:16
by doge
Are they really going to do it!? :doh: (It's a...Crazy Plan!! :doh: )
https://insidedefense.com/daily-news/pe ... r-key-test
Pentagon finalizing assessment on F-35's role for missile defense after key test
By Justin Doubleday November 11, 2019 at 4:36 PM
The Pentagon is finalizing an assessment on how to best integrate the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter into the ballistic missile defense system after the aircraft tracked a pair of interceptors during a key test earlier this year, according to a Missile Defense Agency official. John Bier, program director for Command, Control, Battle Management, and Communications (C2BMC) at MDA, said the Defense Department is close to finishing a report directed by the 2019 Missile Defense Review on how to...

https://docs.house.gov/meetings/AS/AS03 ... 191113.pdf
STATEMENT OF GREGORY ULMER VICE PRESIDENT AND GENERAL MANAGER F-35 PROGRAM LOCKHEED MARTIN CORPORATION
BEFORE THE READINESS AND TACTICAL AIR & LAND FORCES SUBCOMMITTEES HOUSE ARMED SERVICES COMMITTEE ON F-35 PROGRAM UPDATE: SUSTAINMENT, PRODUCTION AND AFFORDABILITY CHALLENGES
NOVEMBER 13, 2019
IV. Modernization Update
The F-35 is designed to incorporate both software and hardware upgrades throughout its 50+ year life cycle and efforts to modernize the aircraft are already underway. We’ll deliver F-35 modernization through the Department’s Continuous Capability, Development and Delivery (C2D2) framework for timely, affordable, incremental warfighting capability improvements. This approach will deliver more agile, continuous modernization on shorter timelines while aligning and synchronizing capability delivery across the entire F-35 Air System.

In order to maximize the investment in the F-35 fleet, it’s imperative that Congress continues to fund the F-35 modernization plan to leverage the full potential of the weapon system. Additionally, it’s important to note that many of the partner countries have made investments in modernization activities as part of their national defense policies and have established the industrial base to support these activities.

From Electronic Warfare, increased computing power, sensor capability, weapons capacity and more, we are actively enhancing all aspects of the F-35 to ensure it exceeds warfighter demands and outpaces evolving threats. Some key upgrades planned include:
    • Automatic Ground Collision Avoidance System (AutoGCAS): AutoGCAS uses terrain mapping, geolocation and automation to detect and avoid potential ground collisions. When the program recognizes imminent impact, it will prompt the pilot to take action. If the pilot is unresponsive, AutoGCAS assumes temporary control to divert the aircraft out of harm’s way, and then returns control of the aircraft to the pilot once on a safe trajectory. Leveraging a rapid, agile development, test and contracting approach, the joint government and industry team successfully fielded the life-saving technology seven years earlier than previously planned.
    • Technology Refresh 3 Upgrades: Technology Refresh 3 takes advantage of fast evolving computing power and adds an Open Systems Architecture that will enable the flexibility for Lockheed Martin and our customers to add, upgrade and update future capabilities rapidly. In addition to the Next Generation Distributed Aperture System discussed previously, the F-35’s Integrated Core Processor, Panoramic Cockpit Display and the Aircraft Memory System will all be upgraded beginning in Lot 15.
    • Multi-Domain Operations (MDO): To increase the F-35’s role in MDO, we’re upgrading sensor fusion capability in Lot 13 and beyond, integrating enhanced voice and data interoperability in Lot 14 and continuing to conduct exercises to demonstrate MDO teaming. To date, the F-35 has successfully integrated with the Aegis Missile Defense system, a High Mobility Artillery Rocket System, or HIMARS, the Integrated Air and Missile Defense Battle Command System (IBCS), and most recently in partnership with the Missile Defense Agency and U.S. Air Force, we successfully connected an F-35, U2, and a multi-domain ground station. The advantages of the F-35 integrated and fused sensor suite now can be made available to other airborne, air, and even subsurface warfighters. We are active now in sharing the key benefits of our 5th Generation air system with other multi-domain parts of operations.
    • Unmanned Teaming: The F-35 is ideally suited for manned / unmanned teaming operations, and we are working closely with our customers to realize a future where the F-35 can command and control unmanned aerial vehicles as wingmen as well as attritable assets in a joint fighting force. Through these and related efforts, this F-35 5th Generation weapon system serves as a force multiplier for our country and allies.
Missile Defense: The F-35 offers inherent capabilities that can significantly enhance U.S. missile defense. The F-35’s stealth and advanced sensor suite can help detect potential missile threats and provide ‘Left of Launch’ identification and engagement through entering contested airspace undetected. The F-35 can also serve as a sensor node to detect and track missile threats at a much closer distance – and connect sensor information to queue existing missile defense systems to engage an incoming threat. According to the Missile Defense Review, the Department of Defense is also building a technology roadmap to equip the F-35 with a new or modified interceptor capable of shooting down adversary ballistic missiles in their boost phase for direct engagement.

    • Extended Range: While the F-35 as configured today, exceeds the specified range performance, we’re engaged in an industry-funded study with Elbit Systems-Cyclone focused on a 600-gallon external tank and an associated jettison-able pylon for the F35A to significantly increase range and loiter time.
    • Increased Lethality: In addition to increasing the F-35A and F-35C’s internal weapons capacity from four to six internal weapons, we’re also working to integrate a series of new weapons to increase lethality. Additionally, the F-35 has the structural capacity on our inner wing stations to carry hypersonic weapons externally allowing the F-35 to execute deep strike missions while providing unmatched ISR capabilities. We also see a growth path in the future to add payload weight capacity and increase the total number of missiles the F-35 can carry.

As we integrate upgraded capabilities, our goal is to maintain or reduce both the unit cost to procure and the sustainment costs for F-35s across the enterprise.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 23 Nov 2019, 15:29
by mixelflick
Interesting note about its ability to carry hypersonic weapons..

And those are the weapons of today. Future hypersonics will undoubtedly be smaller and lighter, probably leading to an increased quantity being carried. Looked at strictly in terms of today's technology, Taiwan's Sky Sword II (pictured) isn't all that big, and is more representative of a weapon that could (possibly) fit inside the F-35's weapons bay.

Although if they're talking about an air to ground hypersonic with extreme range, then yeah probably too big to fit inside one of the bays..

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 03 Dec 2019, 11:32
by eloise
doge wrote:Are they really going to do it!? :doh: (It's a...Crazy Plan!! :doh: )
https://insidedefense.com/daily-news/pe ... r-key-test
Pentagon finalizing assessment on F-35's role for missile defense after key test
By Justin Doubleday November 11, 2019 at 4:36 PM
The Pentagon is finalizing an assessment on how to best integrate the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter into the ballistic missile defense system after the aircraft tracked a pair of interceptors during a key test earlier this year, according to a Missile Defense Agency official. John Bier, program director for Command, Control, Battle Management, and Communications (C2BMC) at MDA, said the Defense Department is close to finishing a report directed by the 2019 Missile Defense Review on how to...

https://docs.house.gov/meetings/AS/AS03 ... 191113.pdf
STATEMENT OF GREGORY ULMER VICE PRESIDENT AND GENERAL MANAGER F-35 PROGRAM LOCKHEED MARTIN CORPORATION
BEFORE THE READINESS AND TACTICAL AIR & LAND FORCES SUBCOMMITTEES HOUSE ARMED SERVICES COMMITTEE ON F-35 PROGRAM UPDATE: SUSTAINMENT, PRODUCTION AND AFFORDABILITY CHALLENGES
NOVEMBER 13, 2019
IV. Modernization Update
The F-35 is designed to incorporate both software and hardware upgrades throughout its 50+ year life cycle and efforts to modernize the aircraft are already underway. We’ll deliver F-35 modernization through the Department’s Continuous Capability, Development and Delivery (C2D2) framework for timely, affordable, incremental warfighting capability improvements. This approach will deliver more agile, continuous modernization on shorter timelines while aligning and synchronizing capability delivery across the entire F-35 Air System.

In order to maximize the investment in the F-35 fleet, it’s imperative that Congress continues to fund the F-35 modernization plan to leverage the full potential of the weapon system. Additionally, it’s important to note that many of the partner countries have made investments in modernization activities as part of their national defense policies and have established the industrial base to support these activities.

From Electronic Warfare, increased computing power, sensor capability, weapons capacity and more, we are actively enhancing all aspects of the F-35 to ensure it exceeds warfighter demands and outpaces evolving threats. Some key upgrades planned include:
    • Automatic Ground Collision Avoidance System (AutoGCAS): AutoGCAS uses terrain mapping, geolocation and automation to detect and avoid potential ground collisions. When the program recognizes imminent impact, it will prompt the pilot to take action. If the pilot is unresponsive, AutoGCAS assumes temporary control to divert the aircraft out of harm’s way, and then returns control of the aircraft to the pilot once on a safe trajectory. Leveraging a rapid, agile development, test and contracting approach, the joint government and industry team successfully fielded the life-saving technology seven years earlier than previously planned.
    • Technology Refresh 3 Upgrades: Technology Refresh 3 takes advantage of fast evolving computing power and adds an Open Systems Architecture that will enable the flexibility for Lockheed Martin and our customers to add, upgrade and update future capabilities rapidly. In addition to the Next Generation Distributed Aperture System discussed previously, the F-35’s Integrated Core Processor, Panoramic Cockpit Display and the Aircraft Memory System will all be upgraded beginning in Lot 15.
    • Multi-Domain Operations (MDO): To increase the F-35’s role in MDO, we’re upgrading sensor fusion capability in Lot 13 and beyond, integrating enhanced voice and data interoperability in Lot 14 and continuing to conduct exercises to demonstrate MDO teaming. To date, the F-35 has successfully integrated with the Aegis Missile Defense system, a High Mobility Artillery Rocket System, or HIMARS, the Integrated Air and Missile Defense Battle Command System (IBCS), and most recently in partnership with the Missile Defense Agency and U.S. Air Force, we successfully connected an F-35, U2, and a multi-domain ground station. The advantages of the F-35 integrated and fused sensor suite now can be made available to other airborne, air, and even subsurface warfighters. We are active now in sharing the key benefits of our 5th Generation air system with other multi-domain parts of operations.
    • Unmanned Teaming: The F-35 is ideally suited for manned / unmanned teaming operations, and we are working closely with our customers to realize a future where the F-35 can command and control unmanned aerial vehicles as wingmen as well as attritable assets in a joint fighting force. Through these and related efforts, this F-35 5th Generation weapon system serves as a force multiplier for our country and allies.
Missile Defense: The F-35 offers inherent capabilities that can significantly enhance U.S. missile defense. The F-35’s stealth and advanced sensor suite can help detect potential missile threats and provide ‘Left of Launch’ identification and engagement through entering contested airspace undetected. The F-35 can also serve as a sensor node to detect and track missile threats at a much closer distance – and connect sensor information to queue existing missile defense systems to engage an incoming threat. According to the Missile Defense Review, the Department of Defense is also building a technology roadmap to equip the F-35 with a new or modified interceptor capable of shooting down adversary ballistic missiles in their boost phase for direct engagement.

    • Extended Range: While the F-35 as configured today, exceeds the specified range performance, we’re engaged in an industry-funded study with Elbit Systems-Cyclone focused on a 600-gallon external tank and an associated jettison-able pylon for the F35A to significantly increase range and loiter time.
    • Increased Lethality: In addition to increasing the F-35A and F-35C’s internal weapons capacity from four to six internal weapons, we’re also working to integrate a series of new weapons to increase lethality. Additionally, the F-35 has the structural capacity on our inner wing stations to carry hypersonic weapons externally allowing the F-35 to execute deep strike missions while providing unmatched ISR capabilities. We also see a growth path in the future to add payload weight capacity and increase the total number of missiles the F-35 can carry.

As we integrate upgraded capabilities, our goal is to maintain or reduce both the unit cost to procure and the sustainment costs for F-35s across the enterprise.

:drool: If they managed to give it an ABM, that would be so crazy.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 12 Mar 2020, 15:22
by doge
:doh: :bang: :shrug: :cry:
https://aviationweek.com/defense-space/ ... -intercept
MDA Halts Airborne Concepts For Boost Phase Intercept
Mar 05, 2020
The U.S. Missile Defense Agency has shelved a proposal to use the F-35 to shoot down ballistic missiles, and paused another study looking at firing lasers at missiles from unmanned aircraft systems, the agency’s director said March 4.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 13 Mar 2020, 01:47
by lbk000
May have something to do with threat assessment changes in light of current events; less urgency of confrontation between US and China makes it smarter to refine concepts instead of committing.

Support will always be there waiting for the capability to be enabled when needed, I think.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 13 Mar 2020, 16:29
by mixelflick
sferrin wrote:
SpudmanWP wrote:I'm thinking something like NCADE based on a CUDA-like upper with a ESSM-type lower and make both of them Gel propellants.


Ahem:

Capture.PNG


I know this is late but...

Seems to me the F-35 is the ideal platform to hunt for/notify friendly forces of a launch. What doesn't seem ideal is its ability to destroy said missile, at least while its in flight. AMRAAM's don't seem up to the job, and too little is known about the AIM-260 to say if it might be useful.

I don't think just offloading the data to another platform is the answer either. It's not as if an F-15EX carry hypersonic weapons can fly around North Korean airspace with near impunity, like the F-35. So I'd imagine whatever they come up with, it'll need to be a missile capable of being carried in the F-35's weapons' bays. Or alternatively, a laser weapon of some sort.

I have to believe that after the DS/Scud hunt failure, the USAF acted to rectify things. Sounds like they did, but didn't get very far until the F-35 came on the scene. Just one more feather in its cap, and another in a long list of capabilities no 4th gen platform can match...

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 13 Mar 2020, 21:50
by citanon
F35 integration with IBCS tested:


Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 17 Mar 2020, 20:35
by XanderCrews
doge wrote::doh: :bang: :shrug: :cry:
https://aviationweek.com/defense-space/ ... -intercept
MDA Halts Airborne Concepts For Boost Phase Intercept
Mar 05, 2020
The U.S. Missile Defense Agency has shelved a proposal to use the F-35 to shoot down ballistic missiles, and paused another study looking at firing lasers at missiles from unmanned aircraft systems, the agency’s director said March 4.



Aww lasers.

The weapons of the future. They have been the weapons of the future for 60 years :)

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 17 Mar 2020, 20:50
by lbk000
Rockets waited patiently for a couple hundred years before enough technologies came together to make them really cool. Lasers are still in their infancy, but they'll get there.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 17 Mar 2020, 22:00
by botsing
XanderCrews wrote:Aww lasers.

The weapons of the future. They have been the weapons of the future for 60 years :)

LASER technology seems to be getting more mature these days. Better power generation/storage with much higher LASER efficiency are popping up over the last years.

I think the progress is mostly enabled by the better material science and engineering, like semiconductors, that we have today.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 04 Aug 2020, 18:06
by zerion
The U-2's Latest Feat: Passing Data from F-35s to Army Missiles

The venerable U-2 took another step toward the Pentagon's vision of 21st-century warfare, thanks to a recent demonstration in which it relayed sensor data from F-35 aircraft through Lockheed Martin communications gear to an Army missile-command system, company officials said Monday.

In a July Orange Flag demonstration at Edwards Air Force Base in California, the high-flying spy plane acted as an airborne communications node, collecting targeting data from Air Force F-35As. The F-35s also sent the data via a ground station to Lockheed’s Airborne Sensor Adaptation Kit to a surrogate Integrated Air and Missile Defense Battle Command System, or IBCS, a command system for Army missiles such as the PAC-3 interceptor or HIMARS artillery rockets.

The addition of the U-2 builds on a January demonstration in which F-35s passed data to an IBCS, which shot down test targets.

“F-35 data collected from the U-2 airborne relay will serve to validate that a single IBCS Airborne Sensor A-Kit can serve multiple pathways to get data from F-35 and ISR assets,” said the Lockheed statement, obtained by Defense One ahead of its official release...

https://www.defenseone.com/technology/2 ... es/167411/

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 04 Aug 2020, 22:33
by ricnunes
lbk000 wrote:Rockets waited patiently for a couple hundred years before enough technologies came together to make them really cool. Lasers are still in their infancy, but they'll get there.


Agreed. And if we include the Chinese rocket spears as being part of the rockets or 'rocket technology' then we're talking about a millennium time span :wink:

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 05 Aug 2020, 15:32
by mixelflick
I can't tell from all the flip flopping if the F-35 is still being investigated for missile defense, but I think it needs to be. No other sensor platform is so robust, at least insofar as also being so highly mobile.

If it works, it will be a boon to both homeland defense and any theater of operation it flies in. From N. Korea to North Dakota to the SCS, it sounds like precisely what we need. The biggest issues seem to be extending range/loiter capability (while preserving stealth) and getting a dedicated missile on it, to further shorten reaction time needed to shoot down an IRBM, ICBM etc..

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 07 Aug 2020, 15:16
by steve2267
mixelflick wrote:I can't tell from all the flip flopping if the F-35 is still being investigated for missile defense, but I think it needs to be. No other sensor platform is so robust, at least insofar as also being so highly mobile.

If it works, it will be a boon to both homeland defense and any theater of operation it flies in. From N. Korea to North Dakota to the SCS, it sounds like precisely what we need. The biggest issues seem to be extending range/loiter capability (while preserving stealth) and getting a dedicated missile on it, to further shorten reaction time needed to shoot down an IRBM, ICBM etc..


Are you saying the F-35 would be a boon to missile defense flying out of North Dakota? Prey tell, how?

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 07 Aug 2020, 21:57
by marauder2048
steve2267 wrote:
mixelflick wrote:I can't tell from all the flip flopping if the F-35 is still being investigated for missile defense, but I think it needs to be. No other sensor platform is so robust, at least insofar as also being so highly mobile.

If it works, it will be a boon to both homeland defense and any theater of operation it flies in. From N. Korea to North Dakota to the SCS, it sounds like precisely what we need. The biggest issues seem to be extending range/loiter capability (while preserving stealth) and getting a dedicated missile on it, to further shorten reaction time needed to shoot down an IRBM, ICBM etc..


Are you saying the F-35 would be a boon to missile defense flying out of North Dakota? Prey tell, how?


F-35s with air launched, terminal interceptors.

The things you want for boost phase translate pretty well into terminal phase interceptors.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 08 Aug 2020, 02:00
by blindpilot
marauder2048 wrote:....

The things you want for boost phase translate pretty well into terminal phase interceptors.


...???? Hmmm. ... No ... < Mach 1 boost phase launch is not equal to Mach 13-20 terminal velocities...

MHO
BP

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 08 Aug 2020, 05:23
by steve2267
blindpilot wrote:
marauder2048 wrote:....

The things you want for boost phase translate pretty well into terminal phase interceptors.


...???? Hmmm. ... No ... < Mach 1 boost phase launch is not equal to Mach 13-20 terminal velocities...



Phrased slightly differently... terminal phase interceptors of ICBM's need something like a minimum velocity of 8 Mach, if not 10-15 Mach. There's a reason GBI really moves out quick. An F-35 out of Grand Forks is going to have to heave a missile capable of accelerating to very high Mach numbers, and that missile ain't gonna be small. The ASAT system tested by the US in the '80s was NOT small, and an F-15 could only haul one aloft, if memory serves. If that thing could intercept a satellite, it might have a shot at an ICBM re-entry vehicle. But the F-35 sensor suite isn't going to help you intercept an ICBM from Grand Forks. If it is even feasible... I will allow that might be the perfect mission for an F-15EX. <gag>

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 08 Aug 2020, 20:40
by marauder2048
blindpilot wrote:
marauder2048 wrote:....

The things you want for boost phase translate pretty well into terminal phase interceptors.


...???? Hmmm. ... No ... < Mach 1 boost phase launch is not equal to Mach 13-20 terminal velocities...

MHO
BP


Please familiarize yourself with boost phase interceptor design; the need to catch a boosting missile (since you won't have
perfect warning, only know the general location, may have late detection depending on the cloud layer),
from some degree of standoff drives *very* high Vbo -> 3 - 6 km/s.

For reference, even the AMRAAM form-factor NCADE was supposed to be around 2 km/sec.

Re-entry Vehicles aren't moving that fast terminally and would be within the enveloped of 3 - 6 km/sec interceptor.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 08 Aug 2020, 20:58
by marauder2048
steve2267 wrote:

Phrased slightly differently... terminal phase interceptors of ICBM's need something like a minimum velocity of 8 Mach, if not 10-15 Mach. There's a reason GBI really moves out quick.


It's neither a boost nor a terminal phase interceptor. It gets to its Vbo rather leisurely (something like > 200 sec burn time).

steve2267 wrote: An F-35 out of Grand Forks is going to have to heave a missile capable of accelerating to very high Mach numbers, and that missile ain't gonna be small.


Around 2000 lbs, capable of fitting in the F-35 bays.
Should be in the 4.5 km/sec range. It's been looked at many times.

steve2267 wrote:The ASAT system tested by the US in the '80s was NOT small, and an F-15 could only haul one aloft, if memory serves.


This is endo terminal defense right? That drives a very different design.

steve2267 wrote:But the F-35 sensor suite isn't going to help you intercept an ICBM from Grand Forks.


This is terminal defense where the the F-35's sensor suite permits it to engage with minimal cueing.
And it's not dependent on whether someone remembered to reserve the IRST that day.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 09 Aug 2020, 05:21
by element1loop
marauder2048 wrote:Around 2000 lbs, capable of fitting in the F-35 bays. Should be in the 4.5 km/sec range. It's been looked at many times.


A possible problem with this is the interceptor's max speed is highly dependent on the launch aircraft's Mach-vector, and altitude. What you say may work OK for a regular RV, with track data supplied mid-course for an expected aim point (which alone is incredibly useful), but an agile fast RV presents some issues with getting the F-35 properly oriented and accelerated, some of the time. It could do a HOBS shot, or high AOA launch, but that's a heavy weapon, and inertial means that would be far from an optimum achievable launch state, with a non-linear affect to range and top speed.

Plus the F-35 must be as high altitude and moving as fast as possible at launch, yet not burn its fuel down too fast, to consistently get a high Mach speed from the interceptor. It's probably doable but getting the speed and range against a low-drag agile RV will be tricky (+1G acceleration), as the engagement would still occur well above 50,000 ft, where the RV is still in very thin air and moving extremely fast.

i.e. The RV won't slow that much until it drops well below 50,000 ft, which means an interceptor rising to meet it will be dealing with a very fast and increasingly agile RV as it descends. If an interceptor launch were lower and slower, say at 35,000 ft and Mach 1.1 the interceptor's top speed will be about Mach 1.5 slower, and its range a lot shorter (so needs to be launched from closer to the RV's actual target).

A launch platform that easily sustains stable super-cruise and rapid acceleration, plus vertical performance from 55,000 ft to 65,000 ft, would be better. A high-performance high-altitude long-loiter agile flying-wing drone, with F-35-like systems, for instance.

Hope the IFF works well.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 09 Aug 2020, 21:34
by marauder2048
element1loop wrote:
marauder2048 wrote:Around 2000 lbs, capable of fitting in the F-35 bays. Should be in the 4.5 km/sec range. It's been looked at many times.


A possible problem with this is the interceptor's max speed is highly dependent on the launch aircraft's Mach-vector, and altitude. What you say may work OK for a regular RV, with track data supplied mid-course for an expected aim point (which alone is incredibly useful), but an agile fast RV presents some issues with getting the F-35 properly oriented and accelerated, some of the time. It could do a HOBS shot, or high AOA launch, but that's a heavy weapon, and inertial means that would be far from an optimum achievable launch state, with a non-linear affect to range and top speed.


What is an "agile" RV? A MaRV? MaRVs are larger and heavier than typical RVs so a many interceptor:1 RV
engagement is fine; the accompanying decoys burn up before most non-exotic MaRVs can maneuver much.

element1loop wrote:Plus the F-35 must be as high altitude and moving as fast as possible at launch, yet not burn its fuel down too fast, to consistently get a high Mach speed from the interceptor. It's probably doable but getting the speed and range against a low-drag agile RV will be tricky (+1G acceleration), as the engagement would still occur well above 50,000 ft, where the RV is still in very thin air and moving extremely fast.


Most of the interceptor designs were motivated by X-47B or UCAV considerations where they are subsonic
but slightly higher in endurance altitude. This is offset by the ability fo the F-35 to accelerate and climb.

"in very thin air" hence DACS or some other form of non-aerodynamic control common
to just about every interceptor that operates in this envelope.

element1loop wrote:i.e. The RV won't slow that much until it drops well below 50,000 ft,


Completely untrue if you look at any modern RV velocity @ altitude profile.

element1loop wrote:which means an interceptor rising to meet it will be dealing with a very fast and increasingly agile RV as it descends. If an interceptor launch were lower and slower, say at 35,000 ft and Mach 1.1 the interceptor's top speed will be about Mach 1.5 slower, and its range a lot shorter (so needs to be launched from closer to the RV's actual target).


Unless we are talking about MaRVs the notion of agility is irrelevant. The typical notion of MaRVs is
that they are a sink for a large number of interceptors. 2000 lbs interceptors would have plenty of
agility so even a 2:1 engagement leaves the defender in the same position since even the simplest
course correcting MaRV tends to displace some number of RVs either by weight or volume.

course-correcting-mk4-rv.png


element1loop wrote:A launch platform that easily sustains stable super-cruise and rapid acceleration, plus vertical performance from 55,000 ft to 65,000 ft, would be better. A high-performance high-altitude long-loiter agile flying-wing drone, with F-35-like systems, for instance.
Hope the IFF works well.


Naturally, it would be great if we had a super-cruising + rapidly accelerating platform
that had great vertical performance in the 50 kft - 65 kft. And whose bays could accommodate
the outsized interceptor volumes and weights required for the mission.

And that could be deployed in quantity. I wouldn't hold your breath.

A high-performance high-altitude long-loiter agile flying-wing drone,


Which are practically mutually exclusive requirements.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 09 Aug 2020, 22:11
by steve2267
marauder2048 wrote:
Completely untrue if you look at any modern RV velocity @ altitude profile.



I would welcome any links to any such publicly available (e.g. opensource) data / figures / charts / graphs / papers etc.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 09 Aug 2020, 23:58
by marauder2048
steve2267 wrote:
marauder2048 wrote:
Completely untrue if you look at any modern RV velocity @ altitude profile.



I would welcome any links to any such publicly available (e.g. opensource) data / figures / charts / graphs / papers etc.


The Adams paper (pg. 10 figure 4a) has a high-Beta, 1000, RV compared to a MaRV.

Figure 16 from Postol is a lower Beta RV but the velocity/altitude profiles are still useful
Fig16.jpg


https://www.aps.org/units/fps/newsletters/201804/north-korea.cfm

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 10 Aug 2020, 06:28
by element1loop
marauder2048 wrote:The Adams paper (pg. 10 figure 4a) has a high-Beta, 1000, RV compared to a MaRV.

Figure 16 from Postol is a lower Beta RV but the velocity/altitude profiles are still useful
Fig16.jpg




marauder2048 wrote:
element1loop wrote:i.e. The RV won't slow that much until it drops well below 50,000 ft,


Completely untrue if you look at any modern RV velocity @ altitude profile.


What you've just posted confirms what I said, most of the slowing occurs below 50,000 feet, i.e. below 14 to 15 km altitude.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 10 Aug 2020, 06:39
by element1loop
marauder2048 wrote:
A high-performance high-altitude long-loiter agile flying-wing drone,


Which are practically mutually exclusive requirements.


Disagree.

That, plus sufficient control surface and thrust overhead from an efficient 3-path engine and 2D vectored nozzle would certainly suffice. Funding it is the issue, but such an aircraft would also make an ideal medium-range bomber escort (if not a striker in its own right), and serve many, many other useful air dominance functions. Not a niche one-trick pony.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 10 Aug 2020, 16:11
by blindpilot
element1loop wrote:
What you've just posted confirms what I said, most of the slowing occurs below 50,000 feet, i.e. below 14 to 15 km altitude.


Or more specifically it's still doing Mach 17 at 85,000 feet, and Mach 8 in the dense 35,000 feet air. The posted deceleration curve is far more challenging (varying aero forces) than the predictable boost phase (fixed thrust) curves.

The boost phase and terminal phase are simply different problems apart from basic physics. Mid phase, lowest speed, most predictable trajectory, etc. remains the easier answer. But the three Boost, Mid, Terminal are not common enough to "carry over" much of the engineering.

I'll bow out of the conversation since although years old, I'm not sure what I got working at NORAD is now unclassified, and converting metrics to Mach/feet hurts my old brain.

MHO,
BP

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 10 Aug 2020, 21:28
by marauder2048
element1loop wrote:
marauder2048 wrote:The Adams paper (pg. 10 figure 4a) has a high-Beta, 1000, RV compared to a MaRV.

Figure 16 from Postol is a lower Beta RV but the velocity/altitude profiles are still useful
Fig16.jpg




marauder2048 wrote:
element1loop wrote:i.e. The RV won't slow that much until it drops well below 50,000 ft,


Completely untrue if you look at any modern RV velocity @ altitude profile.


What you've just posted confirms what I said, most of the slowing occurs below 50,000 feet, i.e. below 14 to 15 km altitude.


By 50,000 ft, the RV has lost nearly 50% of its velocity.
Between 50 kft - 75,000 kft the RV is between 3 km/s - 5 km/s.
That's exactly the engagement envelope for an interceptor in the 3 - 5 km/sec range.

Zachran was suggesting in a recent paper (the follow-on to https://www.hsdl.org/?view&did=687583)
that interceptors in the 6 km/s would be feasible with the recent advances in very light KVs.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 10 Aug 2020, 21:31
by marauder2048
blindpilot wrote:The boost phase and terminal phase are simply different problems apart from basic physics. Mid phase, lowest speed, most predictable trajectory, etc. remains the easier answer. But the three Boost, Mid, Terminal are not common enough to "carry over" much of the engineering.



Boost and Terminal phases require very fast, very agile interceptors. The US collects vast amounts of data on
foreign RVs such that their deceleration profiles are pretty well known. Similar to boost profiles.
It's much easier to vary a boost profile or boost trajectory (including booster separation times)
though which makes boost guidance laws tricky.

The guidance laws for terminal interception have a similar problem in looking at a constantly accelerating
(with a negative sign) RV. But high-aspect angle shots (i.e. head on) minimize the apparent acceleration.

blindpilot wrote:I''ll bow out of the conversation since although years old, I'm not sure what I got working at NORAD is now unclassified, and converting metrics to Mach/feet hurts my old brain.


Thanks for adding substantially less to the conversation than what Corbett and Zachran did in like a page.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 10 Aug 2020, 22:18
by marauder2048
element1loop wrote:
marauder2048 wrote:
A high-performance high-altitude long-loiter agile flying-wing drone,


Which are practically mutually exclusive requirements.


Disagree.

That, plus sufficient control surface and thrust overhead from an efficient 3-path engine and 2D vectored nozzle would certainly suffice. Funding it is the issue, but such an aircraft would also make an ideal medium-range bomber escort (if not a striker in its own right), and serve many, many other useful air dominance functions. Not a niche one-trick pony.


This is in essence the holy grail of aerospace design: fighter-like high performance + high altitude + long loiter.

You would have to employ some form of boundary layer control to get laminar flow, for loiter, over
wings designed for high performance. There is an argument for using the third stream to do this.

But the amount of pitching moment a 2D TVC can contribute a high loiter altitudes is going to be
small just by virtue of the drop-off in engine thrust @ altitude.

So you'll need a lot of control surface weight, area to do the rest.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 11 Aug 2020, 03:16
by element1loop
marauder2048 wrote:
element1loop wrote:
marauder2048 wrote:The Adams paper (pg. 10 figure 4a) has a high-Beta, 1000, RV compared to a MaRV.

Figure 16 from Postol is a lower Beta RV but the velocity/altitude profiles are still useful
Fig16.jpg



What you've just posted confirms what I said, most of the slowing occurs below 50,000 feet, i.e. below 14 to 15 km altitude.


By 50,000 ft, the RV has lost nearly 50% of its velocity.
Between 50 kft - 75,000 kft the RV is between 3 km/s - 5 km/s.
That's exactly the engagement envelope for an interceptor in the 3 - 5 km/sec range.

Zachran was suggesting in a recent paper (the follow-on to https://www.hsdl.org/?view&did=687583)
that interceptors in the 6 km/s would be feasible with the recent advances in very light KVs.



Think about it. 6 km/sec, nose-up at a high attitude. What altitude rise above 50,000 ft does it achieve in the first second?

It goes up at 15,000 to 20,000 ft per second, the engagement altitude would thus be well above 75,000 ft so the RV will be much faster than the conceptual argument's points. That was my original remark's gist. If you use an F-35A and fly lower, at say 35,000 feet launch and Mach 1.2 (with positioning and vector based on the EW tracking) then you have to be confident of where its really aimed and be in place at speed before and just as the RV arrives, because the range at speed of the interceptor is going to be slower and accelerate slower as well as launch altitude and speed are decreased.

That's possibly fine for a regular RV, it could work, but I think it needs an algo machine flying the platform, not a human brain and reflexes. But we also don't know the full dynamic agility-change characteristics below 100,000 ft, where the RV is going to become increasingly agile as it drops and slows. The radius will tighten for the interceptor to complicate the terminal angle and inertia. This is where performance will matter most, to get the interceptor into a kill position, IMO.

And is it hit-to-kill? I think it has to be at that speed as the frag is probably too slow to expand, but then an instant later its expanded too much, and is now too rarefied to get hits. This is another timing and angle problem where it can all go wrong and PoK falls off a cliff. So a hit-to-kill package is needed, IMO.

So if it's hitting-to-kill why not then just do that from the ground with say two interceptors, when the RV is so much slower, and closer to the SAM's final stage speed?

But if it's done from the air its going to be too fast to hit above 100,000 ft, and possibly too agile below 50,000 ft to 25,000 ft level. ... hmm ... so you have about 50,000 feet depth and ~2 seconds in which to hit it, 3 seconds at most.

And do we know what its actually aiming to hit in the last 5 seconds of flight yet? I would say no, and unlikely to get a reasonable PoK on an increasingly agile RV when it shows its hand in the last 3 seconds before impact.

I do believe you know what 'increasingly agile' with slowing speed refers to. That's the point of the hype-RVs, to avoid interception and to confuse as to what the real target is forcing engagement at lower PoK. The Russians made a big noise about their RVs being an 'impossible' engagements to make.

OK, not impossible, PoK can be systematically increased with the right tools and development, but you get one shot at the weapon and it's extremely challenging. You need the right platform and interceptor, plus perfect timing and no failures or snarl-ups, and no mechanism lag issues. I could be wrong but I'm not sure an F-35A, plus a 6 km/s hit-to-kill interceptor and a human pilot can do this reliably. The pilot will not react properly to a Mach 10 to 15 RV even with perfect SA, but no practical experience of doing it other than an engagement simulations as training, with maybe one real world test, at best (I suspect none in training). And then there's WX variability with makes every engagement unique, and not something the pilot can really train for.

So I'd test this engagement concept more practically within the mission simulator, i.e. the entire mostly missile defense mission flights, with realistic sustained loiter, and engagement performances as a guide to what's going to be possible, and what sort of PoK potential this has in battle, including WX variability and penetration-aids in later conceptual tests.

It may be that it is best left to a SAM, or the sort of algo-driven drone described, or a combination of the two. But it's an engagement which has to be solved.

[It may be worth examining engagement using multiple space, fighter and ground-based lasers, attempting to track cumulative watts on to an RV in the final 5 seconds or so of the flight. A swarm of RVs and decoys could overcome this of course in a concerted attack though. But it will still have some level of effectiveness in defending high value targets from destruction.

Perhaps space and fighter or else drone tactical lasers prove impractical alone, i.e. uneconomic or materially ineffective at that speed, except that there's also far less attenuation per dwell second, so with say 5 air and even space lasers simultaneously pre-heating the RV for 2 to 3 seconds per laser, then a network of another 5 to 10 ground-based lasers, simultaneously illuminating to add thermal damage accumulation, and with the dense atmosphere assisting them ... hmm. Thus an RV then needs more expensive coatings, structure, size and weight, making it far less maneuverable at higher speed ... etc.

What if laser output growth and dwell accuracy can then outpace RV counter developments? An expensive hype-missile would then be trashed by increasingly affordable scaleable solid-state ground-based networks of modular mobile lasers (after some pre-heating it on the way down with fighter based lasers). This, conceptually, seems worth working toward, as a layered laser defense. Cumulative heating and damage may be enough to make the RV miss high-value targets by several hundred meters, to a km, or even break up and volatilize ... "a miss is as good as a mile."]

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 11 Aug 2020, 04:25
by element1loop
marauder2048 wrote:
element1loop wrote:Disagree.

That, plus sufficient control surface and thrust overhead from an efficient 3-path engine and 2D vectored nozzle would certainly suffice. Funding it is the issue, but such an aircraft would also make an ideal medium-range bomber escort (if not a striker in its own right), and serve many, many other useful air dominance functions. Not a niche one-trick pony.


This is in essence the holy grail of aerospace design: fighter-like high performance + high altitude + long loiter.

You would have to employ some form of boundary layer control to get laminar flow, for loiter, over
wings designed for high performance. There is an argument for using the third stream to do this.

But the amount of pitching moment a 2D TVC can contribute a high loiter altitudes is going to be
small just by virtue of the drop-off in engine thrust @ altitude.

So you'll need a lot of control surface weight, area to do the rest.


Not really, I conceptually see it cruising at lower altitudes, say FL500 or FL550, then missile early warning comes, and it positions near the suspected target in the required time frame (it may have 5 to 10 minutes to do this), then orients on heading at FL550, gets to an ideal launch speed range in the last minute, then control surfaces and TVC put it into 45 degree nose up towards incoming RV, and launched interceptor between FL600 and 70k ft altitude, then a roll inverted to reverse track back down to FL55O, then reverse track again over likely RV target area to reposition, reorient and accelerate when need for another interceptor launch.

Have a flight of them doing that for area response on multiple incoming.

Use a variable wing shape for flow optimization.

Else, use a wing optimized for this atmospheric pressure range at the design optimal loiter-speed for engine burn (design best flow for +/-10 knots of ideal endurance speed between 50k to 60k ft) for increased laminar efficiency, then use control surface extensions for operating at other altitudes and speeds as needed. The laminar performance only has to be present within the speed and altitude band it spends 95% of its time within.

Which alt and speed range also happens to be close to perfect for sensor and comms reach, plus close to perfect for setting up strike weapon launched, or as an efficient precondition prior to initiating A2A formation spread and positioning. It's already almost where it needs to be for best A2A range, and a see-first, flank-first, shoot-first VLO fight as well.

i.e. it could also supplement F-22A, plus remain up for much longer if a high-thrust 3-path engine light single. It no longer requires twin engines for altitude, AND speed, nor a U2 or MQ-4 wing span and slower speeds to stay high and loiter because more lift can now come from the blended VLO, which is much closer to a flying-wing, but with a shaping for a high-percentage of laminar flow at the design best endurance and transit/cruise speed range, at FL550, as an ideal starting-point for many potential roles.

I have a hard time thinking this was done better in 2000, than it can be done with the computer power, software, manufacturing process, tools and propulsion of 2020 to 2025 period.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 11 Aug 2020, 13:07
by madrat
Sounds like something more like an FB-111A size and shape would be better than an F-35 if you wanted missile defense. As a kid, I always liked watching those big birds flying over Nebraska. Imagine what kind of beast STRATCOM could have put out there with a re-engine program akin to F-14D getting F110. Internally it could carry a pair of SRAM, which was pretty insane, not to mention you still have significant wing capacity. Surely SRAM sized missiles offer substantially more capability than what F-35 could carry.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 11 Aug 2020, 14:23
by hornetfinn
I'd say that F-35 is pretty much perfect as a part of overall missile defence system. There will be a lot of them flying around and they already have the best sensor and CNI systems than any other aircraft. They might not be the best possible solution, but they are definitely a good choice given the numbers and capabilties they bring on table. I'd say in most cases it's better to have 1,000 F-35s than number of superior dedicated platforms. I'd say that if really heavy weapons would be needed for missile defence, then B-1 would be a good platform paired with a number of F-35 acting as eyes and ears for them.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 11 Aug 2020, 15:18
by sprstdlyscottsmn
madrat wrote:Imagine what kind of beast STRATCOM could have put out there with a re-engine program akin to F-14D getting F110.
And the F110 is smaller than the TF30. The F119 is a hair smaller than the TF30 but still bigger than the F100/110.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 11 Aug 2020, 21:20
by wrightwing
element1loop wrote:





Think about it. 6 km/sec, nose-up at a high attitude. What altitude rise above 50,000 ft does it achieve in the first second?

It goes up at 15,000 to 20,000 ft per second, the engagement altitude would thus be well above 75,000 ft so the RV will be much faster than the conceptual argument's points. That was my original remark's gist. If you use an F-35A and fly lower, at say 35,000 feet launch and Mach 1.2 (with positioning and vector based on the EW tracking) then you have to be confident of where its really aimed and be in place at speed before and just as the RV arrives, because the range at speed of the interceptor is going to be slower and accelerate slower as well as launch altitude and speed are decreased.

That's possibly fine for a regular RV, it could work, but I think it needs an algo machine flying the platform, not a human brain and reflexes. But we also don't know the full dynamic agility-change characteristics below 100,000 ft, where the RV is going to become increasingly agile as it drops and slows. The radius will tighten for the interceptor to complicate the terminal angle and inertia. This is where performance will matter most, to get the interceptor into a kill position, IMO.

And is it hit-to-kill? I think it has to be at that speed as the frag is probably too slow to expand, but then an instant later its expanded too much, and is now too rarefied to get hits. This is another timing and angle problem where it can all go wrong and PoK falls off a cliff. So a hit-to-kill package is needed, IMO.

So if it's hitting-to-kill why not then just do that from the ground with say two interceptors, when the RV is so much slower, and closer to the SAM's final stage speed?

But if it's done from the air its going to be too fast to hit above 100,000 ft, and possibly too agile below 50,000 ft to 25,000 ft level. ... hmm ... so you have about 50,000 feet depth and ~2 seconds in which to hit it, 3 seconds at most.

And do we know what its actually aiming to hit in the last 5 seconds of flight yet? I would say no, and unlikely to get a reasonable PoK on an increasingly agile RV when it shows its hand in the last 3 seconds before impact.

I do believe you know what 'increasingly agile' with slowing speed refers to. That's the point of the hype-RVs, to avoid interception and to confuse as to what the real target is forcing engagement at lower PoK. The Russians made a big noise about their RVs being an 'impossible' engagements to make.

OK, not impossible, PoK can be systematically increased with the right tools and development, but you get one shot at the weapon and it's extremely challenging. You need the right platform and interceptor, plus perfect timing and no failures or snarl-ups, and no mechanism lag issues. I could be wrong but I'm not sure an F-35A, plus a 6 km/s hit-to-kill interceptor and a human pilot can do this reliably. The pilot will not react properly to a Mach 10 to 15 RV even with perfect SA, but no practical experience of doing it other than an engagement simulations as training, with maybe one real world test, at best (I suspect none in training). And then there's WX variability with makes every engagement unique, and not something the pilot can really train for.

So I'd test this engagement concept more practically within the mission simulator, i.e. the entire mostly missile defense mission flights, with realistic sustained loiter, and engagement performances as a guide to what's going to be possible, and what sort of PoK potential this has in battle, including WX variability and penetration-aids in later conceptual tests.

It may be that it is best left to a SAM, or the sort of algo-driven drone described, or a combination of the two. But it's an engagement which has to be solved.

[It may be worth examining engagement using multiple space, fighter and ground-based lasers, attempting to track cumulative watts on to an RV in the final 5 seconds or so of the flight. A swarm of RVs and decoys could overcome this of course in a concerted attack though. But it will still have some level of effectiveness in defending high value targets from destruction.

Perhaps space and fighter or else drone tactical lasers prove impractical alone, i.e. uneconomic or materially ineffective at that speed, except that there's also far less attenuation per dwell second, so with say 5 air and even space lasers simultaneously pre-heating the RV for 2 to 3 seconds per laser, then a network of another 5 to 10 ground-based lasers, simultaneously illuminating to add thermal damage accumulation, and with the dense atmosphere assisting them ... hmm. Thus an RV then needs more expensive coatings, structure, size and weight, making it far less maneuverable at higher speed ... etc.

What if laser output growth and dwell accuracy can then outpace RV counter developments? An expensive hype-missile would then be trashed by increasingly affordable scaleable solid-state ground-based networks of modular mobile lasers (after some pre-heating it on the way down with fighter based lasers). This, conceptually, seems worth working toward, as a layered laser defense. Cumulative heating and damage may be enough to make the RV miss high-value targets by several hundred meters, to a km, or even break up and volatilize ... "a miss is as good as a mile."]

Just a couple points.

- an ICBM in boost phase is anything but agile. It's flying a very predictable flight path, has a huge IR signature, and the booster rocket is very vulnerable to damage.

- an ICBM in boost phase isn't traveling at 15,000 - 20,000 feet per second. The engagement window is minutes, not seconds.

- F-35s aren't limited to a 35k/M1.2 launch profile. They could use a 50k/M1.6 profile.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 11 Aug 2020, 22:45
by marauder2048
Interceptor Vbo for boost is driven by reaction time e.g. the launch occurred beneath a cloud layer,
desired range @ platform speed/altitude and to a lesser extent concerns about fast burn boosters.

The guidance laws are tricky but the F-35's nice sensors should permit a real-time inference on the boost profile
and good midcourse updates.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 11 Aug 2020, 22:58
by element1loop
hornetfinn wrote:I'd say that F-35 is pretty much perfect as a part of overall missile defence system. There will be a lot of them flying around and they already have the best sensor and CNI systems than any other aircraft. They might not be the best possible solution, but they are definitely a good choice given the numbers and capabilties they bring on table. I'd say in most cases it's better to have 1,000 F-35s than number of superior dedicated platforms. I'd say that if really heavy weapons would be needed for missile defence, then B-1 would be a good platform paired with a number of F-35 acting as eyes and ears for them.


Agree all, except B-1 is not the aircraft, it's too exposed in forward areas, too few in number to expand its roles, too short in service years remaining, and much too slow and lumbering for the described terminal engagement time limitations.

Either way, as my first comment already said, what the F-35 brings is incredibly useful to missile defense, boost and terminal phase. But this is about whether it can be effective at shooting down an RV, in terminal phase. Maybe, but I don't think a human can maneuver and fire against a hypersonic RV with what will be a radically changing vector and altitude.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 11 Aug 2020, 23:15
by element1loop
wrightwing wrote:Just a couple points.

- an ICBM in boost phase is anything but agile. It's flying a very predictable flight path, has a huge IR signature, and the booster rocket is very vulnerable to damage.

- an ICBM in boost phase isn't traveling at 15,000 - 20,000 feet per second. The engagement window is minutes, not seconds.

- F-35s aren't limited to a 35k/M1.2 launch profile. They could use a 50k/M1.6 profile.



Very much agree that boost phase is where the payoff is, in a battle. It eliminates the decoys and drops terminal target numbers, plus penetration aid hurdles too, plus makes it so much easier for the terminal defenses that you do have. However, boosters could gain defensive aids plus investment in a sacrificial 'local' VHF coverage tactical 'bubble' (i.e. a smaller and more mobile LOS antenna) plus a distributed SAM. It may not prevent loss of many boosters, but it may complicate and distract enough to make a difference.

wrightwing wrote:- F-35s aren't limited to a 35k/M1.2 launch profile. They could use a 50k/M1.6 profile.


Yes, but hand-on-heart, can you say that with perfect SA and conditions, you could line up on and kill on a Mach 15 RV, coming at you as fast as a meteorite? I think that will need an algo-machine to fly and fire effectively.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 11 Aug 2020, 23:30
by marauder2048
element1loop wrote:
Either way, as my first comment already said, what the F-35 brings is incredibly useful to missile defense, boost and terminal phase. But this is about whether it can be effective at shooting down an RV, in terminal phase. Maybe, but I don't think a human can maneuver and fire against a hypersonic RV with what will be a radically changing vector and altitude.


"Radically changing vector and altitude"

For a conventional RV it's all rather predictable; the modern strategic radars can infer properties of
the RV in real-time and combine them with what other assets have observed in peacetime.

It's pretty hard to hide RV testing. BGV and MaRV testing can't be hidden either but I don't
think anyone is claiming they would be a majority of the vehicles the interceptors would be facing.

The reason no power deployed a MaRV or other BGV on strategic weapons in the Cold War is that
the terminal interceptors required to intercept them could and were developed albeit they were nuke-tipped.

So the natural reaction was to max out MIRV count and combine them with more/better penetration aids.

The limit as to what you could achieve with HTK against BGVs is what all the current ground-based
regional glide-weapon defense efforts are all about.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 11 Aug 2020, 23:48
by marauder2048
element1loop wrote:
wrightwing wrote:- F-35s aren't limited to a 35k/M1.2 launch profile. They could use a 50k/M1.6 profile.


Yes, but hand-on-heart, can you say that with perfect SA and conditions, you could line up on and kill on a Mach 15 RV, coming at you as fast as a meteorite? I think that will need an algo-machine to fly and fire effectively.


How would that be different to any of the avionics generated steering/fire cues they have already?

Lockheed (and GD) have historically preferred cues to auto-fire/auto-steering modes but if something
like auto-strafe becomes more widely accepted operationally then there's no reason to limit the
scope of auto-*.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 12 Aug 2020, 00:46
by element1loop
marauder2048 wrote:
element1loop wrote:
wrightwing wrote:- F-35s aren't limited to a 35k/M1.2 launch profile. They could use a 50k/M1.6 profile.


Yes, but hand-on-heart, can you say that with perfect SA and conditions, you could line up on and kill on a Mach 15 RV, coming at you as fast as a meteorite? I think that will need an algo-machine to fly and fire effectively.


How would that be different to any of the avionics generated steering/fire cues they have already?

Lockheed (and GD) have historically preferred cues to auto-fire/auto-steering modes but if something
like auto-strafe becomes more widely accepted operationally then there's no reason to limit the
scope of auto-*.


I'm referring to the flying aspects as much as the weapon release, which can be fully automated (and of course must be). Both have to be ideal to make the release viable, within a very brief window.

To get to the location, at just the right time, based on observed track and predicted target, and ETA (not over or undershooting it by several seconds)

Then smoothly get oriented to needed heading at just the right time from just the right location, again to avoid overshoot or undershoot at Mach 1.2 to 1.6 range. Being 5 to 10 seconds off is not good when the engagement margin is already dicey.

Then achieve and hold a stable required alt and speed cue for ideal launch setup.

Then an automated pitch up and launch at exactly the correct moment, in any conditions. Yes, an engagement algo can fly that automatically, sans pilot disorientation or confusion.

As already said, test it in a full mission simulator, check what's possible or not, and what can be done about it, and determine if it produces projected realistic hit-to-kill geometries, or lots of not possible to complete engagements.

I suspect this won't produce consistent results with human pilots, especially fatigued and stressed ones, that algorithms flying in the sim engagement will do better and be more consistent. Though I may be wrong about that.

I think Mach 10 to 15 speed range right up to the engagement is not something a human brain can maneuver against, in combat, even with cues. If they're following cues pilots will lag the change in ways that undermine the engagement - i.e. in ways algos won't. The algo can follow the cue as smoothly as possible without stress, maintaining ideal numbers. So why not just use a drone for the terminal BM RV engagements (presuming these are feasible, and can be made to work with the dollars) and the F-35 as a key sensor platform and cruise missile killer?

Else, use an F-35, but hand the aircraft over to an autopilot to fly the RV killing setup, engagement and re-setup phases.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 12 Aug 2020, 01:19
by marauder2048
To review: there are a finite and small number of ballistic RV types that can threaten CONUS.

Unless a peer competitor would take the risk of launching a totally untested RV for the first time
in the world's first end-to-end combat use of an ICBM, the US and Allies will have seen the RV fly.

A non-peer competitor may very well take the risk. But then the number of RVs with which the defense
would have to contend is small, midcourse will attrit and terminal interceptor exhaustion is unlikely.

Against known RVs, its quite possible to rehearse interceptions; even totally unknown RVs might still
be amenable to real-time reconstruction of their Beta parameter amongst other properties.

No one will openly discuss this because it goes towards the larger problem of
discrimination including space-borne sensors or sensors onboard midcourse interceptors.

So it's quite possible to rehearse this ad-nauseam in simulators.
Simulated engagements could even be done on T-X if its perf specs are closer to the objective.

The point of the aggressive design of the interceptors is to help account for invariable non-idealities.

A drone is not likely to have the performance to be able to get into position in the manner
of the F-35 which will in turn drive even more expensive interceptors.

I'm not contending drones would not be useful for terminal intercept only that one which has some or
all of the required sensors, high-altitude loiter and payload carriage for the larger interceptor
is not going to be cheap.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 12 Aug 2020, 02:09
by wrightwing
Nobody is talking about using aircraft for terminal phase defense. Boost phase is the only thing that's been discussed.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 12 Aug 2020, 02:31
by marauder2048
wrightwing wrote:Nobody is talking about using aircraft for terminal phase defense. Boost phase is the only thing that's been discussed.


The team behind NCADE proposed aircraft for terminal phase defense since only aircraft can position
an interceptor for high-aspect shots. And because an airborne layer needs very good sensors and very
good fire control and very high speed interceptors for boost...it translates pretty naturally into terminal.

bmd-corbett.png

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 12 Aug 2020, 02:57
by wrightwing
marauder2048 wrote:
wrightwing wrote:Nobody is talking about using aircraft for terminal phase defense. Boost phase is the only thing that's been discussed.


The team behind NCADE proposed aircraft for terminal phase defense since only aircraft can position
an interceptor for high-aspect shots. And because an airborne layer needs very good sensors and very
good fire control and very high speed interceptors for boost...it translates pretty naturally into terminal.

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NCADE was a boost phase weapon, not terminal phase. Nobody is suggesting intercepting RVs with aircraft. What is being suggested, is using aircraft to target missiles once they've launched, and are still at low altitudes/speeds/predictable flight profiles.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 12 Aug 2020, 03:27
by marauder2048
wrightwing wrote:
marauder2048 wrote:
wrightwing wrote:Nobody is talking about using aircraft for terminal phase defense. Boost phase is the only thing that's been discussed.


The team behind NCADE proposed aircraft for terminal phase defense since only aircraft can position
an interceptor for high-aspect shots. And because an airborne layer needs very good sensors and very
good fire control and very high speed interceptors for boost...it translates pretty naturally into terminal.

bmd-corbett.png

NCADE was a boost phase weapon, not terminal phase. Nobody is suggesting intercepting RVs with aircraft.




Feel free to read the attached papers and disabuse yourself of this notion.
The authors are exactly proposing intercepting RVs with aircraft.

NCADE was for boost, ascent and terminal btw.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 12 Aug 2020, 04:34
by wrightwing
marauder2048 wrote:




Feel free to read the attached papers and disabuse yourself of this notion.
The authors are exactly proposing intercepting RVs with aircraft.

NCADE was for boost, ascent and terminal btw.

https://missiledefenseadvocacy.org/defe ... ent-ncade/

"The NCADE is being designed to intercept short and medium-range ballistic missiles in their ascent- and boost-phase."

Spare me the sh*t posting condescension, when you clearly don't know what you're talking about. Nobody is suggesting using F-35s to intercept RVs. Period. Boost phase is the ONLY phase, where aircraft are being considered for use.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 12 Aug 2020, 05:01
by marauder2048
From the Raytheon press release:

http://www.defense-aerospace.com/articles-view/release/3/82223/thruster-tested-for-amraam-anti_missile-variant.html

NCADE is an air-launched weapon system designed to engage short- and medium-range ballistic missiles in the boost, ascent or terminal flight phases.


From the Aerojet press release

https://www.rocket.com/article/aerojet-grows-missile-defense-propulsion-business

NCADE is an air-launched weapon system designed to intercept ballistic missiles in the boost or terminal flight phases, thus increasing the effectiveness of the country's ballistic missile defense.


Since you refuse to read the papers I posted let me give you a summary
(from: The Defense Department and Innovation: An Assessment of the Technical and Policy Challenges
of Airborne Boost-Phase Intercept by Samuel S. Lacinski)

Mike Corbett, the former Director for Advanced Technology Weapons at MDA from 2006
through 2009, and Paul Zarchan, a technical staff member at Massachusetts Institute of
Technology Lincoln Laboratory, based upon the threat models in the 2004 APS report,
concluded kinetic hit-to-kill interceptors launched from airborne platforms (either manned or
unmanned) directed by an infrared search and track sensor suite could perform boost, ascent, and
terminal engagements of threat missiles


All emphasis mine.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 12 Aug 2020, 05:52
by wrightwing
marauder2048 wrote:From the Raytheon press release:

http://www.defense-aerospace.com/articles-view/release/3/82223/thruster-tested-for-amraam-anti_missile-variant.html

NCADE is an air-launched weapon system designed to engage short- and medium-range ballistic missiles in the boost, ascent or terminal flight phases.


From the Aerojet press release

https://www.rocket.com/article/aerojet-grows-missile-defense-propulsion-business

NCADE is an air-launched weapon system designed to intercept ballistic missiles in the boost or terminal flight phases, thus increasing the effectiveness of the country's ballistic missile defense.


Since you refuse to read the papers I posted let me give you a summary
(from: The Defense Department and Innovation: An Assessment of the Technical and Policy Challenges
of Airborne Boost-Phase Intercept by Samuel S. Lacinski)

Mike Corbett, the former Director for Advanced Technology Weapons at MDA from 2006
through 2009, and Paul Zarchan, a technical staff member at Massachusetts Institute of
Technology Lincoln Laboratory, based upon the threat models in the 2004 APS report,
concluded kinetic hit-to-kill interceptors launched from airborne platforms (either manned or
unmanned) directed by an infrared search and track sensor suite could perform boost, ascent, and
terminal engagements of threat missiles


All emphasis mine.

Feel free to to point out the sentence/paragraph, where it discusses NCADE as a terminal phase interceptor for manuevering RVs, travelling at 15,000-20,000 feet per second (or any aircraft/interceptor combination being used for that purpose, for that matter.)

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 12 Aug 2020, 06:59
by marauder2048
wrightwing wrote:Feel free to to point out the sentence/paragraph, where it discusses NCADE as a terminal phase interceptor for manuevering RVs, travelling at 15,000-20,000 feet per second (or any aircraft/interceptor combination being used for that purpose, for that matter.)


Feel free to point out where I suggested NCADE had utility against ICBM delivered MaRVs.

I've discussed interceptors with a Vbo between 3.5 - 5 km/sec against ICBM delivered ballistic RVs.
AWL, described in the excerpt from Corbett below is an F-35 launched interceptor with a Vbo of 3.5 km/s.

As discussed, If you want utility against MaRVs it's a many-interceptor:1 engagement.
But that's also not likely to be the common RV.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 12 Aug 2020, 12:18
by madrat
Could they have negated threats like Iran sent at American assets in Iraq?

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 12 Aug 2020, 15:06
by wrightwing
marauder2048 wrote:
wrightwing wrote:Feel free to to point out the sentence/paragraph, where it discusses NCADE as a terminal phase interceptor for manuevering RVs, travelling at 15,000-20,000 feet per second (or any aircraft/interceptor combination being used for that purpose, for that matter.)


Feel free to point out where I suggested NCADE had utility against ICBM delivered MaRVs.

I've discussed interceptors with a Vbo between 3.5 - 5 km/sec against ICBM delivered ballistic RVs.
AWL, described in the excerpt from Corbett below is an F-35 launched interceptor with a Vbo of 3.5 km/s.

As discussed, If you want utility against MaRVs it's a many-interceptor:1 engagement.
But that's also not likely to be the common RV.

You've shifted goalposts significantly from your original premise (i.e. the window of only a few seconds, due to the aforementioned speeds/target types/terminal manuevering.)

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 12 Aug 2020, 19:00
by marauder2048
wrightwing wrote:
marauder2048 wrote:
wrightwing wrote:Feel free to to point out the sentence/paragraph, where it discusses NCADE as a terminal phase interceptor for manuevering RVs, travelling at 15,000-20,000 feet per second (or any aircraft/interceptor combination being used for that purpose, for that matter.)


Feel free to point out where I suggested NCADE had utility against ICBM delivered MaRVs.

I've discussed interceptors with a Vbo between 3.5 - 5 km/sec against ICBM delivered ballistic RVs.
AWL, described in the excerpt from Corbett below is an F-35 launched interceptor with a Vbo of 3.5 km/s.

As discussed, If you want utility against MaRVs it's a many-interceptor:1 engagement.
But that's also not likely to be the common RV.

You've shifted goalposts significantly from your original premise (i.e. the window of only a few seconds, due to the aforementioned speeds/target types/terminal manuevering.)


Completely untrue. The Vbo range I described above were the ones described at the very beginning.
I don't think anyone was talking about non-ballistic RVs until element1loop started discussing "agile" RVs.

I've given the relevant technical background and the papers I've provided that substantiate my claims are
written by authors with impeccable credentials on the matter.

If you don't like the sources and their analyses please provide a rebuttal.

Though quite why someone who can't get background on NCADE right is suddenly
the arbiter of truth on this topic is unclear.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 12 Aug 2020, 20:12
by wrightwing
marauder2048 wrote:


Completely untrue. The Vbo range I described above were the ones described at the very beginning.
I don't think anyone was talking about non-ballistic RVs until element1loop started discussing "agile" RVs.

I've given the relevant technical background and the papers I've provided that substantiate my claims are
written by authors with impeccable credentials on the matter.

If you don't like the sources and their analyses please provide a rebuttal.

Though quite why someone who can't get background on NCADE right is suddenly
the arbiter of truth on this topic is unclear.

The topic of discussion was clearly ICBMs prior to you suggesting NCADE being used as a terminal interceptor. There is no air launched weapon that's a terminal phase interceptor, that will be ready by 2025. What IS being talked about, is using F-35 sensors in Theater to detect ballistic missile launches, so that they can either engage with onboard weapons (i.e. boost phase), or hand off the targeting data to PAC-3, THAAD, AEGIS, or GBI assets. Nobody is talking about F-35s flying around potential missile targets, and performing terminal phase interceptions. I guarantee you won't find that in any source you care to cite.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 12 Aug 2020, 21:21
by marauder2048
wrightwing wrote:The topic of discussion was clearly ICBMs prior to you suggesting NCADE being used as a terminal interceptor.


NCADE was designed with the ability to be used as a terminal interceptor. Do you now accept that?
Nowhere did I suggest that NCADE was useful against ICBMs. In fact, I explicitly stated that it wasn't.

The point of course is that a boost/ascent phase air-launched interceptor is also what you want
for terminal. That's what NCADE was about for SRBMs: boost/ascent/terminal.

mixelflick mentioned the F-35 contributing to missile defense over CONUS. It was asked: how is this possible?

I gave a pretty detailed response.

wrightwing wrote:There is no air launched weapon that's a terminal phase interceptor, that will be ready by 2025.


Or boost, the Extended Range Weapon ERWn, was cancelled back in 2019 when the Air Force
and the contractor couldn't agree on terms. Should we close the topic then?

If it's good for boost it will be good for terminal. Do you deny that?

wrightwing wrote:Nobody is talking about F-35s flying around potential missile targets, and performing terminal phase interceptions. I guarantee you won't find that in any source you care to cite.


That's exactly what is being described in the excerpt I posted above!
I can highlight the passages in Corbett and Zachran in bright yellow if that will help you.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 13 Aug 2020, 00:50
by element1loop
Just to add that the hit-to-kill engagement of NCADE does suggest terminal intercepts at high altitude were intended, as there's little reason to go after a boost-phase rocket with hit-to-kill vehicle complexity and expense at less that 100,000 ft, possibly even 125,000 ft, against a target with predictable track. If the intent of NCADE was to fly up with a low-hypersonic burn-out speed above that, then hit-to-kill would be needed. But once NCADE is ballistic above about 100,000 feet, the course is set so I can see that going wrong against staging, and a still accelerating target which accelerates even faster as the fuel mass burns down. The burn-out location and orientation of the NCADE hit to kill vehicle would have to be perfect (plus it would not work too well at Mach 5 to 6 burn-out, up high, but still below 100,000 ft, with thermal issues and coasting drag to slow it rapidly, and mess up a crossing-shot's timing on a staging and rapidly accelerating BM. This terminal concept has major problems to address. So I'm not sure killing boost-phase would work acceptably unless it's hit below 125,000 ft, with a directed frag warhead. SM3 hit-to-kill works because the speed and engagement location are precisely predictable. Boost phase may follow a predictable track, but the speed variation, plus the acceleration variation, are large.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 13 Aug 2020, 01:13
by marauder2048
element1loop wrote:Just to add that the hit-to-kill engagement of NCADE does suggest terminal intercepts at high altitude were intended, as there's no reason to go after a boost-phase rocket with hit-to-kill vehicle complexity and expense at less that 100,000 ft, possibly even 125,000 ft, against a target with predictable track. If the intent of NCADE was to fly up with a low-hypersonic burn-out speed above that, then hit-to-kill would be needed. But once NCADE is ballistic above about 100,000 feet, the course is set so I can see that going wrong against staging, and a still accelerating target which accelerates even faster as the fuel mass burns down. The burn-out location and orientation of the NCADE hit to kill vehicle would have to be perfect (plus it would not work too well at Mach 5 to 6 burn-out, up high, but still below 100,000 ft, with thermal issues and coasting drag to slow it rapidly, and mess up a crossing-shot's timing on a staging and rapidly accelerating BM. This terminal concept has major problems to address. So I'm not sure killing boost-phase would work acceptably unless it's hit below 125,000 ft, with a directed frag warhead. SM3 hit-to-kill works because the speed and engagement location are precisely predictable. Boost phase may follow a predictable track, but the speed variation, plus the acceleration variation, are large.



NAP says that NCADE was not intended for intercepts much above 30 km aka ~ 100,000 ft.
That's consistent with the other published data.

Getting high Vbo tends to push air launched interceptor designs towards minimizing inert
masses like warheads. So that requires directional warheads + exquisite fuzing or hit-to-kill.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 13 Aug 2020, 01:23
by element1loop
marauder2048 wrote:Completely untrue. The Vbo range I described above were the ones described at the very beginning.
I don't think anyone was talking about non-ballistic RVs until element1loop started discussing "agile" RVs.


Agree, RV agility was not a concept being discussed much in 2008 or 2013 papers, but in 2020 it's a kerfuffle.

Getting high Vbo tends to push air launched interceptor designs towards minimizing inert
masses like warheads.


I can see why a less complicated multipurpose new A2A missile would be more attractive.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 13 Aug 2020, 01:49
by marauder2048
element1loop wrote:
marauder2048 wrote:Completely untrue. The Vbo range I described above were the ones described at the very beginning.
I don't think anyone was talking about non-ballistic RVs until element1loop started discussing "agile" RVs.


Agree, RV agility was not a concept being discussed much in 2008 or 2013 papers, but in 2020 it's a kerfuffle.



You'd have to show that MaRVs are going to be a major constituent of strategic launcher throw weight.
I can't find anything to suggest that's the case.

BGVs are bigger and heavier than MaRVs so there's fewer of them per strategic launcher..maybe only one.

20 years ago, NAP was suggesting, with analysis, that hypersonics were will within the terminal
intercept capability of contemporary systems. And that emerging systems like THAAD would have
even better capability.

element1loop wrote:
Getting high Vbo tends to push air launched interceptor designs towards minimizing inert
masses like warheads.


I can see why a less complicated multipurpose new A2A missile would be more attractive.


That and the Air Force's steady state interest in an airborne weapons layer for BMD of any type
seems to be wobbly. ERWn being but a recent example.

But I would *hope* that the MRBM (IRBM?) attack on the US air base in Iraq would be a wakeup call.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 13 Aug 2020, 02:06
by element1loop
marauder2048 wrote:You'd have to show that MaRVs are going to be a major constituent of strategic launcher throw weight. I can't find anything to suggest that's the case.


Agree, why I disparage them as 'hype' missiles. Not a lot of money has been allocated to address these thus far. Frankly even Australia's spending allocation on hypersonic research and missile defenses, as recently announced, is a more surprising and impressive commitment (around $40 billion in total programs). Otherwise it looks more like business-as-usual missile defense developments most of the time. I'm also hoping™ that a new A2A missile on F-35, and F-22A, addresses the boost-phase response, in as much as it realistically can be.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 13 Aug 2020, 06:49
by marauder2048
element1loop wrote:
marauder2048 wrote:You'd have to show that MaRVs are going to be a major constituent of strategic launcher throw weight. I can't find anything to suggest that's the case.


Agree, why I disparage them as 'hype' missiles. Not a lot of money has been allocated to address these thus far. Frankly even Australia's spending allocation on hypersonic research and missile defenses, as recently announced, is a more surprising and impressive commitment (around $40 billion in total programs). Otherwise it looks more like business-as-usual missile defense developments most of the time. I'm also hoping™ that a new A2A missile on F-35, and F-22A, addresses the boost-phase response, in as much as it realistically can be.



What came across in the NAP analysis* is that RCS reductions applied to non-maneuvering hypersonic cruise/glide
weapons dramatically shrink the engagement ranges for ground based SAMs..practically to the point of negligible
utility.

Now NAP models a track-via-missile SAM system (maybe S-300 or S-400?) and the modern systems with
faster missiles, active seekers and guided by larger radars (TPY-2) would be more capable.

But it still strikes me that an airborne weapons layer would be useful given the radar/optical horizon
limitations of ground-based systems.

* https://www.nap.edu/read/6195/chapter/10

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 13 Aug 2020, 06:59
by wrightwing
marauder2048 wrote:



Or boost, the Extended Range Weapon ERWn, was cancelled back in 2019 when the Air Force
and the contractor couldn't agree on terms. Should we close the topic then?

If it's good for boost it will be good for terminal. Do you deny that?


Well it's not unfathomable, that JATM or a JATM variant might be useful for a boost phase intercept, and that falls into the 2025 window. As for being good for boost = good for terminal, yes that's incorrect. If you catch a missile in boost phase depending on your range, you're dealing with a M1 to M4 target, that's non-manuevering. An RV in terminal phase is a M10+ target, that's agile. That's a far more difficult intercept, and seeing as how the likelihood of having aircraft flying over an intended target, at the precise moment needed for an intercept, it's an altogether silly notion. Having aircraft orbiting launch sites and lower/slower targets, is far more plausible.
I'd love to see those passages.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 13 Aug 2020, 09:21
by marauder2048
wrightwing wrote:Well it's not unfathomable, that JATM or a JATM variant might be useful for a boost phase intercept, and that falls into the 2025 window. As for being good for boost = good for terminal, yes that's incorrect. If you catch a missile in boost phase depending on your range, you're dealing with a M1 to M4 target, that's non-manuevering.


Consider a purely endo-atmospheric interceptor like NCADE.
It had a max altitude around 30 km and lets say a minimum alt of 10 km.
Solid rockets in boost can cover the gap between 10 km and 30 km in 30 seconds.

That means NCADE would have to *average* 1.5 km/s to intercept a boosting solid
rocket target some 50 km away.

Since 50 km range isn't typically deemed adequate, you need higher velocities and/or wider
engagement altitudes. That all drives you towards higher velocity interceptors described
above.

wrightwing wrote:An RV in terminal phase is a M10+ target, that's agile.

And is matched by the Vbo of the interceptors described above in Corbett and Zachran.

wrightwing wrote:That's a far more difficult intercept, and seeing as how the likelihood of having aircraft flying over an intended target, at the precise moment needed for an intercept, it's an altogether silly notion.


For an ICBM strike on CONUS you have ~ 20 minutes to get aircraft in position
assuming a complete bolt-from-the-blue attack.

The passage in Corbett and Zachran posted gives an operational area of the interceptor
which they say is mounted on air defense alert aircraft.

wrightwing wrote:Having aircraft orbiting launch sites and lower/slower targets, is far more plausible.


Which has its own challenges of finding the launch site, penetrating and persisting.
And if you are orbiting the launch site why aren't you attacking the missile left of launch?

The general premise of boost phase is that you don't know the launch site and have
to spec-out the interceptor based on finite reaction times and some guess as to how close you
think the platform will be on average to a launcher.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 13 Aug 2020, 10:13
by element1loop
marauder2048 wrote: ... And if you are orbiting the launch site why aren't you attacking the missile left of launch? ...


If there's a series of F-35s in the area, continuously, on a BM launcher monitoring task, each logging 1 terabyte per mission, and someone then launches a BM, or a few ... a log will already exist of the transit of the launch vehicle to that site.

So develop an algorithm to check the cumulative data logs to determine exactly when that launcher appeared at or near the launch site. Then go backwards in time from its arrival time in the cumulative area log, to see were it came from to get to this launch area. That origin (or area) is where a bunch of BMs and launchers are probably based and stored.

If the all weather sensors, ID capability, and data-fusion are as good as advertised, then F-35 should (quietly) find and ID mobile launchers before they fire. Thus go backwards in time for each launcher found, and find out exactly where each came from, and monitor that location or area, to pin-point what to hit, etc.

So if or when BM hostilities commence, F-35 can kill any boosting BMs, kill the known launchers, and destroy their bases quickly.

Considerably simplifies the terminal-engagement technical challenge.

Re: F-35 Ready For Missile Defense By 2025: MDA Chief

Unread postPosted: 13 Aug 2020, 10:37
by element1loop
marauder2048 wrote: ... Which has its own challenges of finding the launch site, penetrating and persisting. ...


Yes and no. The jet has passive RF sensors and aspect control to keep the jet out of radial engagement envelopes, or even radar tracking bubbles, or even detection bubbles. They may know you're there (geez, they should), but are they going to admit it? Who are they going to tell? Are they going to launch a MiG29 after an F-35? Fire an expensive SAM at it which still won't hit? Penetrating is not a problem, persisting might not be much of a problem either. Depends how many you need. Two every 3 hours would probably do. 24 aircraft each 24 hours - maximum. 2 squadrons could do it and have reserves for a fast strike.