Can the F-35 match the PAK-FA

The F-35 compared with other modern jets.
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ricnunes

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Unread post11 Jan 2019, 20:33

milosh wrote:Su-30 is heavier and more draggy. So even with better engines it wouldn't be as good as Su-35. Su-35 cockpit is similar to PAK-FA cockpit and if you read what test pilot said for about biggest difference compared to older Flankers "software, software and software" he mentioned hard work on sensor fusion and man machine interface.


I agree that the Su-30 won't be as good as the Su-35 in "kinematics" or in terms of performance/agility even if it was updated with the Su-35's engines but this is akin/similar to for example that a F-15E (even without FAST CFTs) won't be as good in terms of performance/agility as a F-15C.
However would you rather go to war with a F-15E or with a F-15C? IMO, I would have no doubts in choosing the F-15E (the more recent F-15 customers also seem to "agree" with this).

I also take with a grain of salt (actually with a "pile" or even a "mountain" of salt) everything the Russians say about how advanced is their software and sensor fusion in the Su-35! Honestly, I doubt that it's even on par with Eurocannards, let alone with aircraft like the F-22 (and this just not mention the top/benchmark in this regard, the F-35)!
My point here being that a Su-30 with the engines, software and "sensor fusion" of the Su-35 would be more combat effective (and quite so) compared to the Su-35 itself, this in overall terms - due to having second crewman - and this, even with the Su-30 having slightly less performance/agility compared to the Su-35 but this is again akin and much like to a F-15E compared to a F-15C.
Last edited by ricnunes on 11 Jan 2019, 23:43, edited 1 time in total.
A 4th/4.5th gen fighter aircraft stands about as much chance against a F-35 as a guns-only Sabre has against a Viper.
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Unread post11 Jan 2019, 21:50

The Indians are looking to get the AESA and IRST of the Su-57 into the Super-30 upgrade of their Su-30MKI to counter the Su-35 of China. Su-30 is also quite agile bring a thrust vectoring canard Flanker. The Indians have really pushed the design of the Su-30 blurring the gap to Su-35 all the time.

http://idrw.org/indias-super-sukhoi-su- ... echnology/

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Unread post11 Jan 2019, 23:51

Yup, that Indian plan/proposal upgrade for their Su-30MKI's would or could definitely give the Su-35 a run for its money.
A 4th/4.5th gen fighter aircraft stands about as much chance against a F-35 as a guns-only Sabre has against a Viper.
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Unread post12 Jan 2019, 16:08

ricnunes wrote:
milosh wrote:Su-30 is heavier and more draggy. So even with better engines it wouldn't be as good as Su-35. Su-35 cockpit is similar to PAK-FA cockpit and if you read what test pilot said for about biggest difference compared to older Flankers "software, software and software" he mentioned hard work on sensor fusion and man machine interface.


I agree that the Su-30 won't be as good as the Su-35 in "kinematics" or in terms of performance/agility even if it was updated with the Su-35's engines but this is akin/similar to for example that a F-15E (even without FAST CFTs) won't be as good in terms of performance/agility as a F-15C.
However would you rather go to war with a F-15E or with a F-15C? IMO, I would have no doubts in choosing the F-15E (the more recent F-15 customers also seem to "agree" with this).

I also take with a grain of salt (actually with a "pile" or even a "mountain" of salt) everything the Russians say about how advanced is their software and sensor fusion in the Su-35! Honestly, I doubt that it's even on par with Eurocannards, let alone with aircraft like the F-22 (and this just not mention the top/benchmark in this regard, the F-35)!
My point here being that a Su-30 with the engines, software and "sensor fusion" of the Su-35 would be more combat effective (and quite so) compared to the Su-35 itself, this in overall terms - due to having second crewman - and this, even with the Su-30 having slightly less performance/agility compared to the Su-35 but this is again akin and much like to a F-15E compared to a F-15C.


Wouldn't it depend (F-15C vs E) on the mission?

If it was me, I'd want to be in an F-15C. It has the best radar (assuming the latest, greatest AESA), superior acceleration and maneuverability to the E too. Yes, it's older. But it's infinitely more capable vs. the aerial threat arrayed against it. Not sure about SAM's, but the E probably has the defensive countermeasures edge. I dunno. Whenever I see a heavily laden E, all I can think about is it getting jumped and things turning out badly. It's not like it has the SA of an F-35.

Insofar as foreign customers, I think the choice of F-15SA, Quatar, Singapore etc is due to already having superior air superiority platforms. The Saudi's with their Typhoons, Quatar will also be flying Typhoons and Singapore with their SU-30MKM's. The Beagle derivatives are clearly there to be bomb trucks. If those countries didn't have their Typhoons, Flankers etc... things would probably be different.
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Unread post12 Jan 2019, 16:22

mixelflick wrote:
ricnunes wrote:
milosh wrote:Su-30 is heavier and more draggy. So even with better engines it wouldn't be as good as Su-35. Su-35 cockpit is similar to PAK-FA cockpit and if you read what test pilot said for about biggest difference compared to older Flankers "software, software and software" he mentioned hard work on sensor fusion and man machine interface.


I agree that the Su-30 won't be as good as the Su-35 in "kinematics" or in terms of performance/agility even if it was updated with the Su-35's engines but this is akin/similar to for example that a F-15E (even without FAST CFTs) won't be as good in terms of performance/agility as a F-15C.
However would you rather go to war with a F-15E or with a F-15C? IMO, I would have no doubts in choosing the F-15E (the more recent F-15 customers also seem to "agree" with this).

I also take with a grain of salt (actually with a "pile" or even a "mountain" of salt) everything the Russians say about how advanced is their software and sensor fusion in the Su-35! Honestly, I doubt that it's even on par with Eurocannards, let alone with aircraft like the F-22 (and this just not mention the top/benchmark in this regard, the F-35)!
My point here being that a Su-30 with the engines, software and "sensor fusion" of the Su-35 would be more combat effective (and quite so) compared to the Su-35 itself, this in overall terms - due to having second crewman - and this, even with the Su-30 having slightly less performance/agility compared to the Su-35 but this is again akin and much like to a F-15E compared to a F-15C.


Wouldn't it depend (F-15C vs E) on the mission?

If it was me, I'd want to be in an F-15C. It has the best radar (assuming the latest, greatest AESA), superior acceleration and maneuverability to the E too. Yes, it's older. But it's infinitely more capable vs. the aerial threat arrayed against it. Not sure about SAM's, but the E probably has the defensive countermeasures edge. I dunno. Whenever I see a heavily laden E, all I can think about is it getting jumped and things turning out badly. It's not like it has the SA of an F-35.

Insofar as foreign customers, I think the choice of F-15SA, Quatar, Singapore etc is due to already having superior air superiority platforms. The Saudi's with their Typhoons, Quatar will also be flying Typhoons and Singapore with their SU-30MKM's. The Beagle derivatives are clearly there to be bomb trucks. If those countries didn't have their Typhoons, Flankers etc... things would probably be different.


Since when did Singapore buy Flankers? Are you thinking of Malaysia?
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Unread post12 Jan 2019, 17:12

ricnunes wrote:
I agree that the Su-30 won't be as good as the Su-35 in "kinematics" or in terms of performance/agility even if it was updated with the Su-35's engines but this is akin/similar to for example that a F-15E (even without FAST CFTs) won't be as good in terms of performance/agility as a F-15C.
However would you rather go to war with a F-15E or with a F-15C? IMO, I would have no doubts in choosing the F-15E (the more recent F-15 customers also seem to "agree" with this)


See the Wikipedia weight on the Su-35 is still the unrealistic 37,920 lbs it even says citation needed
I believe Sprts did a calculation about it once and said that the E model would perform better if it was stripped of its CFTs.
Discussion here also puts the E's disadvantage over C squarely on the shoulders of those CFTs
viewtopic.php?t=3476

Would the Su-30's disadvantage over the Su-35 be only because of the drag added by the Canards? Wouldn't the Canards also provide advantages in the slow speed arena unlike the CFTs that only offer range advantages and 0 kinematic advantages.

I also think the owners of the Mudhen value it more for the strike capabilities. It is the 2nd most capable in ordnance carrying capacity among Strike aircraft, just after the Su-34.

Plus I noticed, operators of the Mudhen, all of them, have better performing aircraft in their inventory
Israel: F-15A-D, F-16, F-35
Saudi Arabia: Typhoon, Rafale
Qatar: Typhoon, Rafale
S.Korea: F-16, F-35
Singapore: F-16
USAF: F-15C-D, F-22, F-35

Weather this was a conscious decision or just coincidence, I don't know. What I do know is that these air arms do not use the F-15E as their primary A-A platform. A lot of the kills in recent history has been from no fly zone enforcement and border crossing skirmishes where you cannot take full advantage of the F-15E's BVR capabilities.

So the USAF has literally sent F-15Cs and F-16Cs for A-A before considering the F-15E.
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Unread post12 Jan 2019, 17:14

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Unread post12 Jan 2019, 18:09

zero-one wrote:
I also think the owners of the Mudhen value it more for the strike capabilities. It is the 2nd most capable in ordnance carrying capacity among Strike aircraft, just after the Su-34.

I dispute this. A few posts over several pages on this thread.

http://www.c-130.net/forum/viewtopic.ph ... f&start=45
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Unread post13 Jan 2019, 09:58

sprstdlyscottsmn wrote:I dispute this. A few posts over several pages on this thread.

http://www.c-130.net/forum/viewtopic.ph ... f&start=45


Great thread, I simply based my payload assessment on the published max take-off weight minus the published Empty weight.
the F-15E sits at 49,300 while the Su-34 is at a slightly higher 49,817. Negligible and I doubt these birds are even loaded up to their max take-off weights at all.

Interesting that strike fighters today have payload capacities bigger than most heavy bombers in World War 2. Probably why Heavy bombers have gone out of style. Only the US, Russia and China still operate them.
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Unread post14 Jan 2019, 08:10

zero-one wrote:Interesting that strike fighters today have payload capacities bigger than most heavy bombers in World War 2. Probably why Heavy bombers have gone out of style. Only the US, Russia and China still operate them.


I recently read this: “Airpower Against An Army - Challenge and Response in CENTAF’s Duel with the Republican Guard”, Andrews, Air University Press Maxwell Air Force Base, Alabama 36112-6610 February 1998.

B-52s produced disappointing results within that account being considered little more than a psychological weapon that usually missed targets. Strike fighters killed the targets much better even when using dumb bombs from altitude, but with PGMs plus IR sensors and laser targeting they were really devastating. Much more so than the heavy bombers. Then there's always the tonnage dropped to consider per strike, and that also was a surprising story, for instance:

“Psychological operations were integrated in the plans early when CENTCOM PSYOPs experts established liaisons with CENTAF’s planners. General Schwarzkopf appears to have taken an early interest in PSYOPs and displayed a constant interest in using B-52s against the Republican Guard, even though the B-52 was a poor system for destroying dispersed and entrenched armored formations. Leaflets, B-52 strikes, and around-the-clock operations were intended to break down the Iraqi Army’s morale. …//… Feedback on B-52 activities reinforced the prewar perception that they were not well suited for the destruction of point targets. When photos of the KTO became available, B-52 attacks were clearly distinguished from other attacks, and the results were discouraging. Quarter-mile long strings of bomb craters were observed in the vicinity of ground units, with very few direct hits on the widely dispersed revetments. Dispersed, fortified, and armored Iraqi positions were well suited to minimize physical effects of B-52 “area fire.” The psychological value of B-52 attack, however, appears to have been recognized in Riyadh. Leaflets preceded and accompanied B-52 raids in an effort to demoralize Iraqi units, with great effect as Iraqi POW debriefings later indicated.”



One of the interesting bits that stood out in that book was this.


“… Nellis AFB tactics expert, Col Clyde “Joe Bob” Phillips devised a plan to capitalize on the F-16’s capacity for fast, short turnarounds on the ground to increase daily sorties by creating an F-16 forward operating location (FOL). Glosson ordered his largest “day-only” F-16 wing, 193 the 363d TFW(P), to deploy support elements and conduct operations from the Saudi airfield at King Khalid Military City (KKMC). A-10s had been operating from KKMC located only 60 miles from the Iraqi border. F-16s operating there were able to exchange their drop-tanks for extra ordnance: KKMC-based missions carried four Mk-84 2,000-pound bombs (double the normal load). FOL operations allowed the wing to fly more sorties per day. KKMC missions launched from the 363d main base in Abu Dhabi to bomb the KTO, landed and rearmed at KKMC for a second sortie to the KTO (which did not require refueling), landed and rearmed at KKMC for a third mission, and after attacking the KTO, air refueled to return to Abu Dhabi. …”



So although the F-16C with Mk84s (dropped from high altitude) were getting terrible results (mostly due to wind-drift), the fact was that a single F-16C from a FOL could drop as many as 12 Mk84s on the battlefield every day. So can you imagine the F-35A in that same sort of FOL situation using SDBs plus SDBIIs? The air attack on enemy positions would have went many times faster.

The other major winning factor that strikefighters with IR sensors and PGMs bought over bombers was this:

" ... CENTAF used airpower in concert with CENTCOM psychological operations to break the guard’s capability and will. The results were mixed. The bulk of at least two Republican Guard heavy divisions stood and fought VII Corps, unlike most of the non-Republican Guard units which quickly disintegrated at the approach of coalition ground units. Republican Guard units encountered by the XVIII Corps, however, were unable to fight as coherent units, and as noted by the 24th Mechanized Infantry Division commander: “They were shocked, they were horrified. They would attempt to resist, fire back with tank Saggers, small arms, and then mostly surrender.” CENTAF attacked Iraqi LOCs and supply areas to isolate the Iraqi Army from its supplies and to prevent its retreat. The bridge cuts inhibited the Iraqi retreat across the Euphrates. …//… The depots, however, were so hardened and vast they were nearly invulnerable to air attack. Gen Barry R. McCaffrey, USA, described one area as the largest concentration of ammunition he had ever seen, spanning an area of 100 km by 80 km, including underground bunkers, hospitals, and command posts. CENTAF planes were able to reduce substantially Iraqi access to their logistics sites by continuous attacks of logistics vehicles. The Iraqis were forced to shift from a large resupply efforts to very low-rate resupply using few vehicles to avoid coalition air attack. This reaction limited Iraqi options. Deprived of a robust logistics capability, the Iraqi forces were unable to wage a prolonged battle or a battle of maneuver. Degraded logistics put the Iraqi Army on a short tether. By wreaked havoc on the Iraqi command, control, communications, and intelligence (C3I) structure, the air campaign further denied the Iraqis the option to wage a coherent defense. Coalition air strikes hit fixed Iraqi communications links and intimidated the Iraqis into not switching on their radios for fear they would be detected. Air supremacy completely denied Iraqi airborne reconnaissance. Although the Tawakalna and Medinah divisions appeared to have received the order to defend to the west, the maneuver was executed poorly and units became entangled and confused by air attack. The course of the battle suggests disrupted C 3I had a large impact; US forces generally knew where the Iraqis were, but the Iraqis seldom knew where the coalition forces were. …//… Iraqi soldiers were, instead, trained by weeks of bombing to flee their crew-serviced weapons and seek shelter. Iraq’s respected long-range artillery that survived the air campaign was ineffective. Denied air surveillance by coalition air superiority, Iraqi artillery units lacked any meaningful targeting capability. Intimidated by continuous air presence, the Iraqis never turned on their counterbattery radars. There is evidence that some Iraqi artillery positions may not have been manned as US units approached. Iraqi fires were described as “erratic” and “completely ineffective.” The units that were able to fire were dealt with swiftly. US units were able to use counterbattery radars continuously to silence Iraqi fires with powerful rocket barrages. Fixed in place by destruction of their prime movers, Iraqi artillerymen faced a dilemma: stay and die or abandon the equipment and live. Iraqi weapons systems were diminished by CENTAF attacks. That there was ground fighting, and in some cases very intense fighting, suggests the 50 percent attrition figure was not of primary importance. As Lt Gen Frederick Franks, VII Corps commander remarked, “50 percent didn’t mean much to Capt. McMaster” (a company commander at 73 Easting). Airpower’s value to the RGFC battle seems to reside in the options it took away from the enemy commander. ... "



i.e. The bombers could not maintain a presence to obtain those effects, but the strikefighters could and did, they suppressed everything, and robbed initiative in a way the bombers simply couldn't contribute to much.


“ … There were, however, problems that could not be adequately solved. The first was BDA. The BDA process was broken, and all echelons within CENTAF were painfully aware of that fact. Despite the strong desire to correct the system, certain obstacles could not be overcome. The BDA system was designed to operate from the top-down, with imagery providing hard evidence of target conditions. This architecture was dependent on a very few collection platforms; it was physically impossible for those few systems to supply the volume of information required by the process. Had a bottom-up architecture been used, strike aircraft might have been properly equipped to provide the information (e.g., equipped with strike cameras) and procedures in place to properly use that information. Although Riyadh forced through some elements of bottom-up BDA through cockpit VTR tapes, it was not enough to overcome the bureaucratic inertia existing across several independent organizations. In short BDA was mired in bureaucracy and fundamentally flawed in its peacetime top-down centralized framework. For the process to work, a massive technical solution was required, which still has not occurred as of this writing. …”



That was written in 1998, but that now has occurred, F-35A/B/C, a post-attack information gusher, SAR mapping, IR, video, plus adhoc FAC, in spherical 3D EO/IR, and a comprehensive targeting system, all within one jet, and a common data picture with outstanding payload and excellent performance.

So the heavy bomber was present in Desert Storm but the strikefighters with precision and IR attack sensors were much more effective, and in unforeseen ways.

Which is one of many reasons I'm in favor of having distributed bomber-mode/beast-mode F-35A squadrons, plus VLO tactical probe tankers, so these F-35s can act more like true roving precision-bombers, that see and hit everything and have the targeting discrimination and quick BDA feedback to do it properly.
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Unread post14 Jan 2019, 08:28

Thanks for the summary - so what is this guy on about?
How the Air Force Lost Its Way And most of its bombers, too
10 Jan 2019 Jerry Hendrix

"The United States Air Force has lost its way. It has forgotten what business it’s in, mistakenly believing that its raison d’être is air supremacy while forgetting that the core of its mission is long-range strike. If the nation is to be successful in the great-power competition it finds itself in, the Air Force will need to find its way home and regain its strategic relevance in an environment dominated by anti-access/area-denial systems employed by China and Russia. [F-35 anyone?]

Source: https://www.nationalreview.com/magazine ... t-its-way/
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Unread post14 Jan 2019, 09:09

spazsinbad wrote:Thanks for the summary - so what is this guy on about?
How the Air Force Lost Its Way And most of its bombers, too
10 Jan 2019 Jerry Hendrix

"The United States Air Force has lost its way. It has forgotten what business it’s in, mistakenly believing that its raison d’être is air supremacy while forgetting that the core of its mission is long-range strike. If the nation is to be successful in the great-power competition it finds itself in, the Air Force will need to find its way home and regain its strategic relevance in an environment dominated by anti-access/area-denial systems employed by China and Russia. [F-35 anyone?]

Source: https://www.nationalreview.com/magazine ... t-its-way/


Dunno. I don't agree with Hendrix that much.

For one thing the legacy 'bombers' are long-range CM standoff weapon haulers right now. And remove the surface fleet threat with existing non-LO bombers and ASMs/ALCMs, and suppress what remains of it with the threat of same. US B-2 to strike C3i and long-range tracking and targeting sensors.

Can a H6K hit a ship, or expect to survive long over water, at that point? Even so, hit the bomber bases with SLCMs and ALCMs. Will the H20 arrive in numbers before B-21 in service? Will a PCA (system-of-systems response) not suppress A2D2 effectiveness as well? And are BMs going to shoot straight at ships, minus their targeting data? And do we presume the missile defenses on islands won't work? Will decoys and EA not work?

Will P-8A not kill subs? Will MQ-4 not find surface targets? Are lasers on 9 x DDGs just misguided? And will the bombers not be supported by a planned total of 117 x P-8A with ASM and likely ALCM capabilities? Plus USN SSN and SSGN strikes. Plus combined allied efforts?

In a Joint Force paradigm, is such a simple argument as, 'we need more bombers', a cure-all, or just one aspect to it? Does the balance of attacking forces not enter Hendrix's mind? Or does he presume these will have no impacts or effects?
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Unread post14 Jan 2019, 09:56

BTW, I loved this:

“ … Moreover, both legacy fighters and just-fielding F-35s are already vulnerable to modern integrated air- and missile-defense networks.”


“… The B-21 has the capability to span the distances imposed by anti-access/area-denial technologies while its stealth design largely shields it from detection, …”


Small fast stealthy F-35 = Bad

Big slow stealthy B-21 = Unambiguously Good

:doh:
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Unread post14 Jan 2019, 15:47

[/quote]

Since when did Singapore buy Flankers? Are you thinking of Malaysia?[/quote]

Yes, my bad. I was thinking about Malaysia..
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Unread post14 Jan 2019, 16:00

Plus I noticed, operators of the Mudhen, all of them, have better performing aircraft in their inventory
Israel: F-15A-D, F-16, F-35
Saudi Arabia: Typhoon, Rafale
Qatar: Typhoon, Rafale
S.Korea: F-16, F-35
Singapore: F-16
USAF: F-15C-D, F-22, F-35

Precisely the point I was making: All of these foreign operators of the Beagle/SA/QA etc. have more capable air superiority platforms.

Also, I am NOT of the belief the USAF has "lost its way", preferring to focus on air superiority vs. bomb trucks. If anything, it's the other way around. We have enjoyed air superiority for so long, its been taken for granted. The truncated F-22 buy and reliance on the other half (being elderly F-15's) is a great example. Everything you saw from Desert Storm, to GWII, to Bosnia, to Afghanistan was predicated on controlling the skies. Every single one of those though was against a technologically and numerically inferior air force. China will not be such an easy pushover, as already they field many capable (some would say comparable) fighters. The J-10B/C vs. the F-16, their various Flanker derivatives vs. our F-15C's. And they are building them in comparable numbers (to say nothing of emerging stealth birds). We still have the edge, but it isn't the "unfair advantage" we used to have.

Thankfully, the F-35 promises to restore this unfair advantage once again. We're just damn lucky the USAF included the requirement that it rate like a Viper, and radius like a Super Hornet - and LM delivered. Had the specifications leaned more heavily to hauling air to ground and LM came up short in those air to air requirements, things might be different. If you think about it, the one major flaw the J-20 has is that it's not as capable in the air to air arena as the F-35 - they put too much emphasis elsewhere IMO. And without better engines, that just gets magnified.

So unless its some kind of BVR beast that can take out F-35's long before the F-35 can see/merge with it, they will have ceded air superiority to us once again...
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