Can the Raptor's radar be geo-located?

Anything goes, as long as it is about the Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor
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neurotech

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Unread post02 Jul 2012, 06:50

Scorpion1alpha wrote:I fail to see those links supporting what you said about EA-18 getting F-22 WVR kills.

If you meant other fighters, not the EA-18 in your second sentence, then you weren't clear on that.

My comment with regard to getting in close, referred to a F/A-18F or Growler-lite (without the heavy AN/ALQ-99s) being able to use its low speed turning ability to take advantage of an overshoot by a F-22 going faster in a turn.
Scorpion1alpha wrote:Also, I do know F-22s have been killed WVR in exercises before. Newsworthy because it very rarely happens. Analysis has almost always shown it was "pilot error". The jet was fine, but if the pilot doesn't do something right, it's not the jet's fault.

There is no surefire F-22 killing technique / tactic. Anybody who has fought it will tell you that.

Nope there isn't any surefire tactic. The F-22 pilot has to make a mistake to allow it to happen. Overshooting during a dogfight would be a pilot mistake. The whole premise of the F-22 is being able to choose exactly how to enter a fight. In a 'realistic' scenario, a F-22 would stay BVR and fire the missile without ever being seen/detected. Once the F-22 goes into the merge, and both jets are visual, then pilot skill plays a role, and if the pilot screws up, the other jet could get off the shot.

Edit: The theory is that a AN/ALQ-218 could detect a F-22, although no confirmation of this actually occurring during an exercise.
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SpudmanWP

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Unread post02 Jul 2012, 17:23

pants3204 wrote:Speaking of MADL and datalinks, would use of MALD by the growler betray its position to the F-22, like you said?
MADL <> MALD

I know, it gets confusing. :)

MADL = F-35's Multifunction Advanced Data Link, think AESA for Data Links. It broadcasts only in the direction of the intended receiver. Assuming that the F-22 is somewhere to the F-35's front and its partner is to the side, the F-22 would never (well highly likely to never) get a chance to detect the MADL since it was not transmitted in its direction. Only the F-35 has MADL at this time.

Traditional data links, OTOH, broadcast in every direction at the same time.

MALD = Miniature Air Launched Decoy, think marriage of towed decoy and jet-powered UAV.


@Geogen:
How would they know if it was a valid "ping" unless they compared data? The whole point of LPI is that the transmissions look like background noise and the Growlers would have to be doing a lot of "comparing notes" to reach a decision.

neurotech wrote:When a F-22 fires an AIM-120 or AIM-9, the data-link becomes active and transmits targeting to the missile, however brief. This could theoretically allow a EW suite to detect a F-22 from the data-link.
The F-22 does not have to transmit a data link to the missile until it is well into the flight. Even then, it is only needed it the target changes heading and the AMRAAM has to be re-vectored. Current Aim-9Ms do not have a data link.
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geogen

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Unread post02 Jul 2012, 18:24

Again, if an LPI AESA can be geo-located by an advanced ESM system on-board a tactical platform (or any airframe), it would likely be best geo-located by the ALQ-218 with it's advanced digital receiver + auxilliary ESM suite.

Perhaps the the BAE/Northrop Barracuda ESM system contains an equal or better digital receiver component and utilizes superior techniques and algorithms. (some possibly migrated over from Northrop's ALQ-218?). Perhaps the ALQ-218's components, techniques and algorithms will be further spiral updated by 2017-2018 too. But perhaps of relevance, it's also the ALQ-218 which was selected for integration into the P-8A for it's electronic situational awareness and not the lighter Barracuda. I mean, why not just turn the P-8 into a giant armed Cat-bird! Right? :D

The final point however, is very simply that if there is in fact no current method capable to geo-locate an LPI AESA, then the Blue team better get cracking and develop a system to fill such a capability gap and maintain the innovative edge? Either that, or probably start developing really large IRSTs if going to cede that space.
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SpudmanWP

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Unread post02 Jul 2012, 18:31

Geo-locating LPI AESA is what the F-35 + MADL is for. The ability to securely and safely compare data is a huge advantage.

btw, I am not saying that the F-22's LPI modes can be seen by even the F-35 at tactically relevant ranges.
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neurotech

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Unread post02 Jul 2012, 18:39

SpudmanWP wrote:
neurotech wrote:When a F-22 fires an AIM-120 or AIM-9, the data-link becomes active and transmits targeting to the missile, however brief. This could theoretically allow a EW suite to detect a F-22 from the data-link.
The F-22 does not have to transmit a data link to the missile until it is well into the flight. Even then, it is only needed it the target changes heading and the AMRAAM has to be re-vectored. Current Aim-9Ms do not have a data link.

I haven't seen any confirmation to the earlier AIM-9Ms on an operational F-22. Early Block I AIM-9Xs have limited LOAL capability, and off boresight sleeker that allows a lock within certain limited parameters without the data-link, using a slaved sleeker for the fraction of a second the AIM-9X is still captive. The upgraded F-22 can now use AIM-9X Block II missiles with data-link.
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Unread post02 Jul 2012, 18:59

I do not challenge the likeliness of F-35's Barracuda + MADL geo-locating LPI AESA in the future.

The conjecture from my point was that it's also likely that if such an ESM system can do so, it's probably also the current ALQ-218 digital receiver, also selected for the P-8A.

Many would be curious to compare actual performance of an ALQ-218 vs Barracuda against various emission sources, although that's we won't know that info here of course.

But BAE is no doubt an industry leader in this field of electronic tech, of course primary developer of the economical Barracuda suite (likely involving some migrated Northrop know-how from the ALQ-218) and also developer of the DEWS digital suite.

And F-22's specific radar in question will not be the world's most superior LPI Radar forever. Thus the new-age requirements and capability gaps to fill in the near-term.

With respect to only MADL being able to securely and safely compare data between 2 operational F-35 in say 2018, perhaps that may still be true by then, but perhaps updated Growler-class platforms will also be 'good enough' to perform such techniques too. Remember, it's about effective innovation, maintaining an edge and about being 'good enough'.
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Unread post02 Jul 2012, 19:05

Pre-Increment 3.2B F-22s do not carry the AIM-9X, only the AIM-9M.

The F-22 has been carrying the AIM-9M exclusively as its IR missile since IOC.

Since Aim-9X Blk2 is not even IOC yet, I am not sure that Incr3.2B will support it. The F-22 may only be able to support Blk1 Aim-9X.
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Unread post02 Jul 2012, 19:12

@Geogen:

MADL is working on Blk2 hardware and software for the F-35 right now, let alone 2018.

I know, your assuming IOC jets in strength (and ignoring USMC F-35Bs).

Better question, since the F-22 is the only thing in operation with a LPI AESA, what is there for the Growler to detect?
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neurotech

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Unread post02 Jul 2012, 19:32

SpudmanWP wrote:Pre-Increment 3.2B F-22s do not carry the AIM-9X, only the AIM-9M.

The F-22 has been carrying the AIM-9M exclusively as its IR missile since IOC.

Since Aim-9X Blk2 is not even IOC yet, I am not sure that Incr3.2B will support it. The F-22 may only be able to support Blk1 Aim-9X.

The AIM-9X Blk2 is available for limited use, even though not IOC.

As for AIM-9M I may have been mistaken on that, I found a confirmed source specifically confirming it was a AIM-9M on a F-22 http://www.navair.navy.mil/index.cfm?fu ... ry&id=3494 (Go Navy!)
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Unread post02 Jul 2012, 20:29

MADL is working on Blk2 hardware and software for the F-35 right now, let alone 2018.


How the F-35's Barracuda ESM is able to network cooperatively with other operational F-35 was the rough scenario per my 2018 example given.

I know, your assuming IOC jets in strength (and ignoring USMC F-35Bs).


I guess I'm using some sort of estimated benchmark when USAF and/or partner F-35s would initially be operational at the multi-ship level, yes.

Better question, since the F-22 is the only thing in operation with a LPI AESA, what is there for the Growler to detect?


The topic thread was posted for what it was, for pure conjecture, so I don't want to tweak the topic too much... and it wasn't my thread I'm merely adding to the... :cheers:

But to answer your Q, the point being... it's arguably good to have at least some working ESM capacity to potentially detect LPI AESA, (and the more the better) as there likely won't be full-size boards advertising when exactly the next 'other' capability will hit the market?? :shrug:

Oh, but it might arguably be a good tactics training partner for the Raptor pilots too, especially if it makes them sweat a little for good health... as one doesn't absolutely know when the other guy has actually ID'd you or geo-located you, do they?? Although... it would be a pretty cool avionics system that lights up when you've been passively located!


And to neurotch:

The so-called Growler-lite (electronically aware) would still need to be an EA-18G-wired platform my friend. A mere F/A-18F with wing-tip pods wouldn't do it. The ALQ-218 suite apparently requires the extensive 'growler model' re-wiring and removal of gun system, etc. just minus the jamming pods.

Although, an extra-lite, poor-mans, or faux-Growler might include something like an -18E/F (or any 4.5gen platform) with an integrated All-in-one modern AEA/escort attack pod on the centerline. (eg, Thales pod, Elta or Rafael, etc)
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Unread post02 Jul 2012, 22:38

geogen wrote:
And to neurotch:

The so-called Growler-lite (electronically aware) would still need to be an EA-18G-wired platform my friend. A mere F/A-18F with wing-tip pods wouldn't do it. The ALQ-218 suite apparently requires the extensive 'growler model' re-wiring and removal of gun system, etc. just minus the jamming pods.

Although, an extra-lite, poor-mans, or faux-Growler might include something like an -18E/F (or any 4.5gen platform) with an integrated All-in-one modern AEA/escort attack pod on the centerline. (eg, Thales pod, Elta or Rafael, etc)

I know about the Growler wiring. Some Lots of US Navy F/A-18Fs are partially wired for EA-18 conversion. This was to allow a common inline production line, and allow some flexibility. Most of the F/A-18Fs are not wired to support either pod or wingtip AN/ALQ-218, but certain Lots are. I'll try and find out which BuNos other than EA-1 & EA-2 were flown with the pod-mounted ALQ-218.

BTW, Geogen there are other locations to put the ALQ-218 receiver without the ALQ-99 system, other than the gun bay. The original Block I F/A-18s had older avionics compared to Block II. Some significant size/weight reductions took place in the F/A-18F. The Growler Lite configuration was offered as part of the F/A-18IN & F/A-18BR programs. The Growler ALQ-218 system has capabilities to locate targets other than SAMs and radar. Try cellphones used by insurgents.
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Unread post03 Jul 2012, 16:31

The most important question to ask, is whether the F-22's radar can be detected in time, before you get shot down. If you have the resources, and unlimited time, then just about anything can be detected. The whole point of stealth, is to minimize the amount of time a foe has, to react.
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Unread post23 Sep 2012, 21:41

How can the f-35 locate and jam the f-22's LPI radar and not get detected? Thanks for the answer. :)
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Unread post18 Jun 2013, 15:09

f-22lm wrote:How can the f-35 locate and jam the f-22's LPI radar and not get detected? Thanks for the answer. :)

Excuse me guys for bringing to top such an old conversation but discussion of LPI radar detection capabilities is some sort of chiromancy without knowing any theory.

Let me make my guess.

As we know from web, the reasonable pulse power for APG-77 can be near 20 kW value (73 dBm).
The antenna gain is near 38 dB (it is based on X-band and physical dimensions).
Assume the detection capability of 193 km for 1 m2 from Janes is true.

So if you refer to the document ITU-R P.525 you will see that channel loss for radar may be estimated by formula
103.4 + 20*log10(f, MHz) +40*log10(d, km) - 10*log10(rcs, m2).
So for 10 GHz ans 193 km and 1 m2 rcs this will be near 275 dB. This is a greatest receiver sensivity.
Then we take the large ELINT jet such as Rivet Joint for example. Guess its rcs=50 m2.
It is not hard to evaluate that the same loss (275 dB) from this target we can get from distance near 520 km.
Then assume that this large jet is at 100 km distance. This is 5.2 times closer and this means that to preserve the same minimal channel budget we can afford the output power which is 5.2^4 = 730 times lower! 27 W instead of 20 kW.
This is the ground fro LPI. But I must stress that it is only possible when Raptor knows target location - so it can track it in LPI mode. But Raptor itself is not for standalone operation. So such a support in targeting assumes to come from AWACS for example.

But what is for ELINT Rivet Joint?
From the same document ITU-R P.525 we see that one-way channel loss will be
32.4 + 20*log10(f, MHz) + 20*log10(d, km) adn for 100 km it is 152 dB.
So the signal level will be 44 dBm (27 W peak power) + 38 dB (antenna gain) - 152 = -70 dB (assume non-directional ELINT antenna).
This value is near receiver sensivity limits and it is rather hard to be detected. Why?
The thermal noise level is -174 dBm/Hz. This is a constant.
If we look for signal in overall X-band (4 GHz from 8 to 12 - i.e. 96 dB) we get total noise of -174+96=-78 dBm. We should add receiver noise figure and appropriate signal-to-noise ratio value to this -78, and this explaines why the APG-77 signal falls beyond ELINT receiver dynamic range.

But if ELINT start a dedicated search of APG-77 it will rather find it but of cause the probability is lower.

Another point - is that AESA gives the ability to control amplitude distribution over antenna aperture and this defines the decrease of its sidelobes. This makes the detection of APG-77 by ground ELINT station by the sidelobes emission very very hard even in case of maximum output power.

I'm sure the conventional 4G aircrafts has no RWRs with capabilities of detecting such LPI radar, but we should assume its forthcoming shortly.
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