CUDA, would it work?

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uclass

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Unread post19 Dec 2017, 11:47

Okay so I came across this story about the AIM-9's first combat use.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AIM-9_Sid ... rait,_1958

During the Taiwan Strait battles of 1958, a ROCAF AIM-9B hit a PLAAF MiG-17 without exploding; the missile lodged in the airframe of the MiG and allowed the pilot to bring both plane and missile back to base. Soviet engineers later admitted that the captured Sidewinder served as a "university course" in missile design and substantially improved Soviet air-to-air capabilities.


So, if a strike from a non-exploding AIM-9 doesn't kill a plane, would a strike from a CUDA that has no warhead?
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lbk000

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Unread post19 Dec 2017, 12:38

Well damn, aircraft back then couldn't evade radar, so I guess that means the F-35 can't work either???

People far more invested in missile technology think there is promise in HTK, but I guess they must have never heard of the GAR-8 before!
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sferrin

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Unread post19 Dec 2017, 13:13

uclass wrote:Okay so I came across this story about the AIM-9's first combat use.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AIM-9_Sid ... rait,_1958

During the Taiwan Strait battles of 1958, a ROCAF AIM-9B hit a PLAAF MiG-17 without exploding; the missile lodged in the airframe of the MiG and allowed the pilot to bring both plane and missile back to base. Soviet engineers later admitted that the captured Sidewinder served as a "university course" in missile design and substantially improved Soviet air-to-air capabilities.


So, if a strike from a non-exploding AIM-9 doesn't kill a plane, would a strike from a CUDA that has no warhead?



Are you serious? Nope, hit-to-kill doesn't work at all:

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bigjku

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Unread post19 Dec 2017, 13:26

I think it’s unlikely that a HTK missile has no explosives. But the warhead would be relatively small and on the order of a 5-10 pounds at most rather than the 40 pounds of an AIM-120.
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lbk000

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Unread post19 Dec 2017, 13:35

Not according to Lockheed:
"Cuda is a highly lethal interceptor that defeats targets by direct body-to-body impact," Lockheed says. "At impact, Cuda sweeps its mass directly through the target at a selected point of vulnerability."


Apart from the fact that HTK is a proven technology already by way of LEAP, THAAD, PAC3, etc., I want to point out that now everyone and their mother is finally on board the highly-computerized negative-stability train it only gives surgical HTK the advantage.

However, the US is the only one that's significantly invested in HTK, so now everyone else is once again left with their pants around their legs.

That's how you keep winning.
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botsing

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Unread post19 Dec 2017, 13:35

HTK missiles will have dum-dum like properties.

So with impact the kinetic energy will cause the rapid spreading/expansion of material to have the highest kill probability.
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hornetfinn

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Unread post19 Dec 2017, 13:43

Good observation and question.

AIM-9B was not designed to kill with kinetic energy and was thus ineffective when it hit the MiG-17 and didn't detonate. Problem was that it was slow, even top speed was just about Mach 1.7 or so AFAIK and it would quickly lose speed when rocket motor burned. It was also not very dense and thus the kinetic energy was very low when it hit. HTK missiles need speed as kinetic energy is quadrupled when speed is doubled. CUDA would likely have something like 3-4 times higher speed than AIM-9B meaning about 10-20 times higher kinetic energy. That's like difference between getting hit with 12.7 mm machine gun round vs. 5.56 assault rifle bullet wearing body armour.

HTK missiles will also be designed to kill with kinetic energy only, which means they will also have far more effects when they hit. They could be frangible like FAPDS rounds which means they would disintegrate into high velocity fragments which would make a lot of damage to any aircraft. Basically fragmentation warhead effects without explosives.

I think it would work very well, especially against fighters and other relatively small targets. Not sure if HTK is going to be enough against large aircraft like transports though.
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bigjku

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Unread post19 Dec 2017, 13:51

lbk000 wrote:Not according to Lockheed:
"Cuda is a highly lethal interceptor that defeats targets by direct body-to-body impact," Lockheed says. "At impact, Cuda sweeps its mass directly through the target at a selected point of vulnerability."


Apart from the fact that HTK is a proven technology already by way of LEAP, THAAD, PAC3, etc., I want to point out that now everyone and their mother is finally on board the highly-computerized negative-stability train it only gives surgical HTK the advantage.

However, the US is the only one that's significantly invested in HTK, so now everyone else is once again left with their pants around their legs.

That's how you keep winning.


They could. PAC3 does have a lethality enhancer warhead and is the only one there that is even contemplated against a mixed target set so I could see that being incorporated given that the others are pure anti missile weapons. I could see it going either way. CUDA wasn’t selected for proof of concept. The competing proposal got funding to go forward in a similar space IIRC. Raytheon SACM I believe. I can see wanting a lethality enhancer for bigger targets.
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lbk000

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Unread post19 Dec 2017, 14:10

While it's possible, I think it would be hard to afford include a charge powerful enough to be effective against large aircraft while competing with space/mass needed for HTK properties in such a form factor. The R-60 is in the same size class (6ft) as the SACM/MSDM/CUDA/MHTK missile and its 3-3.5kg warhead is not considered particularly lethal against large targets.
1. I believe CUDA will have a dense rod-like component and it would achieve its effects through tumbling rather than any sort of fragmenting or expanding action. Likely the shearing effect would allow it to cut through wing spars or other vital areas of even large aircraft.
2. I dont think HTK would be pursued if it lacked the capability to very selectively target where its going to hit.
3. One of the core goals of MHTK is to allow more more missiles to be carried, there is a certain allowance for multiple missiles to be expended against a larger target if need be.
4. The concept of shooter-on-site is a pre-5thgen paradigm. In the 5th generation Any-Sensor-Best-Shooter world, a different weapons platform carrying a more ideal weapon may take care of the large aircraft for you.

Afterthought: in the foreseeable future anything is lethal if you shoot enough of it -- maybe one day the lines between bullets and missiles will get blurred and we will see "guns" on airplanes again.
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hornetfinn

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Unread post19 Dec 2017, 14:42

One way of achieving large target capability would be to release a cloud of tungsten (or similar heavy metal) subprojectiles before impact. Bit like AHEAD and ABM ammunition for 30-35 mm guns. That would require forward looking proximity fuze to detonate a small bursting charge to release the projectiles. This could be much smaller than regular warhed while having at least similar effects on target.
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wrightwing

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Unread post19 Dec 2017, 15:04

HTK missiles are designed very differently than standard missiles. They aren't just a typical missile minus explosives.
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lamoey

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Unread post19 Dec 2017, 15:51

It's the size difference between a PAC3 and a CUDA that makes it easy to doubt that it could have the same effect as in the movie kill of the QF-4 above. Gen 2-3 and some gen 4 tends to have more weight in their skin than newer designs, and may not be as easy to penetrate, especially if hit from behind, with less relative speed difference. Of course physics may prove me completely wrong, but that's what my intuition tells me.
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steve2267

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Unread post19 Dec 2017, 17:05

sferrin wrote:


At 0:56, approximately 1-2 frames before missile impact on the QF-4, a fireball appears that is quite distinct from the QF-4. Any idea what that is? If I didn't know any better, I'm guessing someone unzipped the solid-fuel rocket motor of the PAC-3 so that a debris could would also sweep through the target.

Such an unzipping feature would also give the PAC-3 the ability to be terminated prior to impact. "Did we just fire on that plane? Didn't you get the memo -- Turdeau is flying in to negotiate F-35 with Trump!? Abort! Abort! ABORT!!!"

[ETA: corrected time to 0:56, 1:31 was length of entire video.]
Last edited by steve2267 on 19 Dec 2017, 19:19, edited 1 time in total.
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sferrin

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Unread post19 Dec 2017, 17:41

Since nobody else has done it yet I'll point out the obvious. In the famed "Mig-17 flies Sidewinder to China" example it was an AIM-9B for god's sake. It was obviously in a tail chase, after motor burnout, and basically "docked" with the Mig-17. The speed differential was minimal which is why there was limited damage to the missile itself. This should be so obvious as to make the initial questioning post just sad.
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sferrin

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Unread post19 Dec 2017, 17:43

steve2267 wrote:
sferrin wrote:


At 1:31, approximately 1-2 frames before missile impact on the QF-4, a fireball appears that is quite distinct from the QF-4. Any idea what that is?


Almost certainly a divert motor firing. When a PAC-3 "unzips" going after a soft target it's much more dramatic. (will post a video later) PAC-3 does have a "lethality enhancement" mechanism so it doesn't just punch a hole through a soft target but it doesn't look like they activated it for this shot. You'll see.
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