F-35 JSF vs Eurofighter Typhoon

The F-35 compared with other modern jets.
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FANTASMA

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Unread post05 Jul 2006, 12:15

Some details for the cost of the JSF..According to details given to publishity from the General Manager of the Pentagon for the JSF Steven Enewold the cost for the aircraft will arise about 150 mn $ until the end of the decade but after 2014-15 will be reduced to about 50-60 mn $..around 2011 to 137 mn $ and 2013 to 116 mn $, for the time being the cost is 82mn $..there is a study from CRS a department of Congress (02-06-2006) that there is a serious possibility for the US airforce to cut down by 1/3 the total number from the 1763 JSF originally required..if that comes true it will have consequences of the final cost of the airframes targetted for exports..this was published in a greek newspaper a few days ago..
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Unread post05 Jul 2006, 20:18

skrip00 wrote:F-16E BLK60s are brand new airframes AFAIK.

As for longevity, they offer more than the Tiffy has right now. In fact, much of the Tiffy's upgrade life will be to catch up. So there isnt musch longevity there.


New airframes yes.... being used at their maximum potential.... YES

That is what I mean, it is extremely difficult to keep these aircraft constantly updated compared to earlier Vipers...

And as RoAF says, an aircraft on the market for 25years with many of the block 60 orders made to replace older Vipers so already have infrastructure in place is not a fair comparison.

Infact I do believe all foreign sales comparisons and not applicable... there is always one major factor.... POLITICS..., Singapore were never going to buy Typhoon... they have close military ties with France (A-4 training) and the US (F-16 training). Being as they are getting rid of their A-4s and not their F-16s it makes political sense to purchase the F-15SG as all training can be conducted at one location.

Same with Saudi Arabia... Rafale never got a look in (and still hasn't despite desperate efforts) as there are very very strong political and military ties with the UK.

Rafale will be successful when ex-french colonies want to replace their M2000's and not before..... I could go on and on as the list of political influence in orders is endless.

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sferrin

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Unread post06 Jul 2006, 03:27

CheckSix wrote:well, there are no miracles in aerodynamics. Look at the weight and look at the small control surfaces...


LOL what's that say about ASRAAM then?
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sferrin

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Unread post06 Jul 2006, 03:34

boff180 wrote:
Why would any nation buy a Tiffy if it can get a F-16 BLK60?


In one word: Longetivity.

The Block 60 represents the pinnicle of the F-16 development and upgrade paths.


Hardly. There's a lot more that could be done with it. Give it 3D TVC with a low observability nozzle and up the power to 36k. Add a diverterless inlet and/or a radar blocker in the inlet. You could do a big nose modification and mount an APG-79 or go to the F-16XL configuration or the big wing of the Japanes F-2. Granted some of these mods become less and less an "F-16" and they don't come cheap but the fact remains there's a lot you can still do.
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Unread post06 Jul 2006, 04:17

An elegant solution to this argument.

Why the F-35 is superior to the Eurofighter Typhoon

Some things to make clear:
1. No platform ever operates alone. Not numerically, and not capability. IE you'll have AWACS and other aircraft supporting.
2. Stealth is a major advantage. While not 100% invisible, it does degrade enemy radar capabilities immensly.

Now to the why...

The best way to decribe the F-35's superiority is to use a scenario:

2018
A revolution overthrows Saudi Arabia. The nation rallies and begins taking an aggressive posture against US forces in Iraq and Kuwait.

On a summer night, a flight of 6 Tiffys take off. Across the border are 4 ANG F-15Cs. Without warning, the Tiffys fire their missiles. Of the 4 F-15Cs, 1 limps home with a damaged wing.

War begins. The Gulf is effectively lost.

The USS Stennis is sent in to restore supply lines and to shut down the Saudi Air Force.

Its immediate. Just after midnight, 8 F-35Cs are launched with 4 F/A-18Fs and 4 F/A-18Es. The F-35s each carry 2 AIM-120Ds and 8 SDBs. The F/A-18Fs carry 6 AIM-120Ds and 2 AIM-9Xs. The F/A-18Es carry buddy stores for the whole flight group.

This ammounts to 48 AIM-120Ds and some pretty long legs.

The F-35Cs take point in EMCOM. Their primary mission on this night is to get some kills. Behind them, the F/A-18Fs trail 100km behind with their AESA's scanning.

Hawkeyes are available, but they are holding back over the carrier group. This strike package is on its own.

6 Typhoons are found over the Gulf. Theyve been flying for 45min. They have 2 drop tanks and 4 Meteor missiles. Before things went south, they also recieved major upgrades in their engines and their brand new AESA radars. The pilots are proficient and came back from exercises in Europe only months before.

The Saudis have no AWACS support.

Immediately the Saudi RWRs go off intermittedly. They know someone is out there and watching them. They flip on their radars and pick up 2 Navy SuperHornets in the distance (approx 150km). Immediately they lock-on. As they push to supercruise RWRs go off once again. This time they're missile radars. 12 AIM-120Ds are bearing down on them. They try to turn and run, but cannot beat the terminal missiles. 4 Tiffys go down. 2 survive through the use of decoy lures and chaff.

The Survivors are return to the threat. This time the SuperHornets are closer... yet they hold fire. Immediately, 2 more missiles scream in. Both Typhoons see more targets. The AIM-120Ds are flying a 20km distance, and close it in no time. End game.

This same thing can be done again and again with the F-35 in the service of any of its air forces.

Drawbacks: Limited stealth AtA missile load. 4 F-35s can make up for on F-22A.

However, after the Tiffys are downed, the F-35Cs proceed to bomb Saudi air bases. As they leave, the escorting SHs fire at chasing targets. Providing cover.
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boff180

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Unread post06 Jul 2006, 07:28

five flaws with that scenario...

1. at 150km they are already within meteor range.... official quotes are "4 times the range of the aim-120c-7" which puts it over 200km. So meteors will be away before the 120D's reach home.
2. you still dont think even in 12 years time RWRs an't effectively etect AESA? Things move on, if they can't by then... engineers aren't as good as they make out.
3. Probably more than 4 Meteors :p with two tanks the BVR missile loadout is between 6 and 8 depending on how many WVR are on board... stations 2 and 12 can either take a double rail WVR launcher or a single BVR.
4. Have you seen is what planned for Tranche 3 Typhoons? Which is what all but 24 aircraft will be in Saudi service? I wouldn't even call them Typhoons.... Active cancellation, no vertical fin, 3d tvc, cft. Among others... greatly reducing its RCS and it would definately be below a point 150km away of detectability.
5. On the figures banding around... the F-35 is capable of detecting a Typhoon tranche 1/2 RCS size target 100Km away... not further... so I doubt the F-18s would have detected anyway at that distance in the first place. And vice versa.
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Unread post06 Jul 2006, 09:04

The biggest flaw...revolution in Saudi?? Not in a million years, everybody is too rich! :wink:
"I may not agree with what you say....but I will defend to the death your right to say it".
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Unread post06 Jul 2006, 11:09

Actually, the biggest flaw is the fact that the Saudi aircraft are largely maintained by contracted foreign personnel (BAES in the case of the Tonka and lieklly the Tiffy too). If the Saudi were going up looking for a fight then the UK (and, unless they have somehow REALLY pissed us off in the meantime) and thus the US would know it was coming.

Also, whilst TV has been suggested as a possible T3 upgrade the other two have not been voiced as official T3 features. I can't see the T3 not having a tail (that's a large structural change).

Some other points (@ Skrip):
* What happened to Saudi's AWACS? They have 5 E-3A.
* Why only four Meteor? If the Saudi were expecting a retaliation surely the Typhoons would be carrying AA weapons on the Inboard and Outboard pylons too (so 4 x ASRAAM, 6 x Meteor). Clean config is nice but if your going to take on the USAF/USN...
* How has the AIM-120D (a Medium ranged missile) outranged the Meteor? If the Typhoons are traking them out at 150km (probably a bit extreme, I imagine that the USN will be using Growlers as well to mess up the radar picture) then the RCS advantage that the SH is presumed to have (stess presumed. Every manufacturer is making big boasts about RCS these days so I just take the JSF and Raptor as being proper stealthly and leave it at that) is moot.
* Also, what happened to the Typhoon's DASS? The Saudi Typhoons are going to be UK spec so they'll have DASS fitted, giving them a fighting chance against the AIM-120.
*As the Saudio have the home advantage they'll pop off their (probably empty) drop tanks. Makes them less encumbered. The Hornets may or may not be able to do the same.

I imagine that the Saudi airforce is going to come off worse anyway you play this scenario. Hell, why even have the Super Hornets up, just use Tomahawks, B-2 and JSF to take out the rather centralised Saudi military structure, avoid the Typhoons and wait for them to run out of fuel! - Play the strengths!.

The JSF is a stealthy strike platform. It SHOULDN'T be enagaging enemy fighters. Think of it as the Mosquito of the 21st century. Except exchange speed as a defence for stealth. It's flying AROUND the enemy defences and using SDB to take out their base facilities!

As an AA platform it has to rely on its stealth to position it for the killer shot, rely on its AMRAAM to work flawlessly (a good bet, the AMRAAM is enjoying succes rates in the high 90's IIRC) and then all the opposing aircraft to be unable to avoid the incoming shots. Once it's fired off its four AMRAAM (so eight for a standard two ship flight) it only has a gun (if carried - only the CTOL has it as a standard fit), stealth and the pilot's skills to get it home and away from and (liklly miffed) surviving aircraft and other CAP. If it's carry external AA weapons it's essentially an F-16 with better legs and sensors (not a bad thing by any means!)

IMHO, the JSF is going to be a great strike aircraft and I think the RAF should look at a modified JSF (slight lengthend CTOL with a Navy style big wing, uprated engine and ability to carry four or so PWIV internally + at least two ASRAAM) to replace the Tornado. As a Fighter I think it's better suited to hit and run attacks against high value targets (refuellers and AWACS beware!) in enemy airspace.

If an airforce can afford two types then I'd say get JSF for CAS and Strike and secondary AA and get Typhoons to deal with CAP, Escort and secondary CAS roles. If it's only one then the air force needs to decide if it's going to mainly defending it's own airspace (Switzerland, Belgium, Saudi) or going to be acting as and offensive asset (Netherlands are a good example - no defence worries but a lot of commitments to UN. NATO and the like). Typhoon is best for the first, JSF certainly is best for the second.

All of which will mostly be ignored as the wonderful world of FMS discounts and politics get involved ;)
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Unread post06 Jul 2006, 14:39

I think what he intended was that the superior range of the Meteor has no say when it takes the EF much longer to detect the stealth JSF than it takes the JSF to detect the low-observable EF.
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Unread post06 Jul 2006, 14:49

Hmm, that makes sense. I missed the fact that the F-35 were taking point and just assumed that the escorts would be out front. -1 reading comprehension for me! Still, it does make the E Hornets kinda redundant. Just use the F's (who would be carrying a pair of AMRAAM and AIM-9X for self defence no doubt) to sucker the Typhoons.

EDIT - Actually disregard that. I doubt the buddy packs are the best thing to be carrying around in a dogfight!

I wonder if using non-stealthy aircraft as 'bait' may become a valid target in the future. I guess it would require a degree of trust between the two groups of pilots!
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Unread post06 Jul 2006, 18:07

Also, whilst TV has been suggested as a possible T3 upgrade the other two have not been voiced as official T3 features. I can't see the T3 not having a tail (that's a large structural change).


Don't make me find the article lol!!! They are looking at using the 3D TVC for yaw control and removing the vertical fin... resulting in a major RCS reduction.
On active cancellation - the official word came from the technologies developer... saying it was being considered for T3 fitting.
And Eurofighter themselves have shown fullsize CFT mock-up typhoons and its being developed by BAE Systems Australia.

Does he also realise that in his scenario, CAESAR is in the F-22 class for A2A combat (no information has been released about A2G...yet) so will have superior detection to the F-18E.

Also I know what point he was trying to make about the Meteor... I was making the point, the Typhoons have no need whatsoever to go supersonic to engage in that scenario... turn, detect, fire... run like hell! Its a bit arrogant to think that the Saudi's wouldn't be expecting "hidden" F-35s to be operating alongside the SH's. They aren't stupid.

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Unread post06 Jul 2006, 18:17

Safetystick wrote:Hmm, that makes sense. I missed the fact that the F-35 were taking point and just assumed that the escorts would be out front. -1 reading comprehension for me! Still, it does make the E Hornets kinda redundant. Just use the F's (who would be carrying a pair of AMRAAM and AIM-9X for self defence no doubt) to sucker the Typhoons.

EDIT - Actually disregard that. I doubt the buddy packs are the best thing to be carrying around in a dogfight!

I wonder if using non-stealthy aircraft as 'bait' may become a valid target in the future. I guess it would require a degree of trust between the two groups of pilots!

The Saudis did have AWACS, but they had them in other places. Having only 3 really limits the time theyre up, even with in flight refueling. 1 would be up over the Kingdom, 1 on the ground fueling and being maintained, and 1 heading up.

Why only 4 Meteors? Well the Saudi Tiffys had 2 external fuel stores for a prolonged patrol over the Gulf. Maybe 2 IR AAMs as well.

We're they expecting an attack? Yes. But you only have so many aircraft to spare. We can assume the Saudis were dealing with Kuwaiti assets and USAF assets in Iraq and Kuwait.

Why the F/A-18Es? They need to gas up at some point on the way to their targets. Logistics of the mission.

Why the F/A-18Fs? Because 2 of them can haul a greater weapons load than 3 F-35Cs. They can hold back though and allow the front-running F-35Cs get some clean kills.

Why no DASS? They had it. But! We will assume that the AIM-120D will use 2-way datalinking and GPS to get into close-in terminal guidance. At which point, the Eurofighters will have only seconds to react.

Another point is that there were more than one missile tasked per aircraft. Towed decoys and automated defense systems can only help so much agains ONE missile. Not 3 or 4.

While my distances were off, consider this: The F/A-18Fs and Typhoons will have detected each other long before they will have been in range of each other. So nstead of 150km, itll be 200km.

However, the F-35Cs would be ahead of their own escorts by 150km!

Its a kind of perverse escort role where the defenders fly behind the aircraft they are defending.

Basically, the F-22A does the same thing when operating, just faster and less aircraft.

If they can find a way to add more internal BVR AAMs to the F-35C, then itll be quite a force to deal with.
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Unread post06 Jul 2006, 19:12

Why only 4 Meteors? Well the Saudi Tiffys had 2 external fuel stores for a prolonged patrol over the Gulf. Maybe 2 IR AAMs as well.


This still DOES NOT answer this, why just 4... in an active war scenario and defending you would fly with a full A2A load
.
Each wing has 4 pylons... 1 dedicated to a WVR AAM, 1 wet and the others are multi-purpose... all cleared for Meteor. In conjunction with the 4 BVR/targetting dedicated and 1 wet pylons on the fuselage.

The max possible loadouts is what I have stated below.
BVR: stations 2,3,4,5,6,8,9,10,11,12.
WVR: stations 1,2,3,11,12,13.
double rail WVR: stations 2,12.
Wet: 3,7,11.
A2G: 2,3,4,7,10,11,12.
Sensors: 5,7,8

However going on what the RAF are currently flying on BVR tests is.....
BVR: 2,5,6,8,9.
WVR: 1,13.
Fuel: 3,11. Sometimes 7 aswell.

Standard ops (ie. pilot training)....
WVR: 1,13.
Fuel: 7.

The heaviest load yet carried/cleared is....
BVR: 5,6,8,9.
WVR: 1,13.
Fuel: 7.
1000lb LGB: 2,3,4,10,11,12.

The F-35A and C are going to be crackers... but as you don't like Typhoon... I hate with a passion the F-35B as I think it is well and truly a donkey.. not what the RAF/RN need. And as I have said many a time before, the F-22 is without question the best A2A platform around, with Typhoon in second.

According to the calculated detection (>50% chance) distances by Toan... which have been calculated using OFFICIAL publically stated figures and then using standard accepted mathematical formulae. Even at 50km.. the F-35 is getting very close to CAESARs detection capability of it. If not already in it... as public figures are never the real classified ones.

I have attached his figures below, you may be interested in the Block60's radar capabilities.

Andy

CAPTOR(EF-2000 Tranch 1 and 2):
For RCS 0.0001 m2 class target: 12 km+
For RCS 0.001 m2 class target: 22 km+
For RCS 0.1 m2 class target: 70 km+
For RCS 1.0 m2 class target: 124 km+
For RCS 5.0 m2 class target: 185 km+
For RCS 10.0 m2 class target: 220 km+

CAESAR AESA(EF-2000 Tranch3, post-2015 with 1,500 T/Rs):
For RCS 0.0001 m2 class target: 18~21 km+
For RCS 0.001 m2 class target: 32~38 km+
For RCS 0.1 m2 class target: 104~122 km+
For RCS 1.0 m2 class target: 185~216 km+
For RCS 5.0 m2 class target: 278~324 km+
For RCS 10.0 m2 class target: 330~385 km+

RBE-2 PESA(Rafale F1/F2/F3):
For RCS 0.0001 m2 class target: 7~9 km+
For RCS 0.001 m2 class target: 13~15 km+
For RCS 0.1 m2 class target: 41~49 km+
For RCS 1.0 m2 class target: 73~87 km+
For RCS 5.0 m2 class target: 110~130 km+
For RCS 10.0 m2 class target: 130~154 km+

APG-77 AESA(F-22A):
For RCS 0.0001 m2 class target: 20 km+
For RCS 0.001 m2 class target: 35 km+
For RCS 0.1 m2 class target: 112 km+
For RCS 1.0 m2 class target: 200 km+
For RCS 5.0 m2 class target: 300 km+
For RCS 10.0 m2 class target: 355 km+

APG-81 AESA(F-35A/B/C):
For RCS 0.0001 m2 class target: 16 km+
For RCS 0.001 m2 class target: 28 km+
For RCS 0.1 m2 class target: 90 km+
For RCS 1.0 m2 class target: 160 km+
For RCS 5.0 m2 class target: 240 km+
For RCS 10.0 m2 class target: 285 km+

APG-80 AESA(F-16E):
For RCS 0.0001 m2 class target: 11 km+
For RCS 0.001 m2 class target: 20 km+
For RCS 0.1 m2 class target: 62 km+
For RCS 1.0 m2 class target: 110 km+
For RCS 5.0 m2 class target: 165 km+
For RCS 10.0 m2 class target: 195 km+

APG-68 V9(F-16 C/D/I)and RDY-2(M2000-5MK2 and -9):
For RCS 0.0001 m2 class target: 4~5 km+
For RCS 0.001 m2 class target: 8~9 km+
For RCS 0.1 m2 class target: 25~30 km+
For RCS 1.0 m2 class target: 46~54 km+
For RCS 5.0 m2 class target: 66~80 km+
For RCS 10.0 m2 class target: 78~95 km+

And so you can make head nor tail of those detection figures...
RCS data from different official sources:

EF-2K Tranche 1/2 - 0.1 ~ 0.5m2
Rafale - 0.05 ~ 0.2m2
F-22A - 0.0002 ~ 0.0005m2
F-35A - 0.001 ~ 0.002 m2
JAS-39C - 0.5 m2
Su-27/Su-30 - 10.0 m2
Su-35 - 1.0~3.0 m2
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Unread post06 Jul 2006, 20:19

Why attack SA with a carrier? seems an odd thing to do with so many nearby land bases. Send in the USAF day 1 package and the rather pathetic SA air force wouldn't be there on day 2.

There's no such thing as 'official" T3 features there's just a list of wet dream items carried by phoon fans. Finless is ridiculous.
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Unread post06 Jul 2006, 20:40

boff180 wrote:According to the calculated detection (>50% chance) distances by Toan... which have been calculated using OFFICIAL publically stated figures and then using standard accepted mathematical formulae. Even at 50km.. the F-35 is getting very close to CAESARs detection capability of it. If not already in it... as public figures are never the real classified ones.

Look at you're own numbers: F-35A RCS = .001m2 class.
CAESAR radar range for .001m2 class target = 32~38km

Also, I'd love to see how the hell the CAESAR radar magically outperforms the APG-77, APG-81 and so on! Geez, the still-in-development Euro-Radar magically trumps what the US has been working on for the past decade! I'm sorry, but last I read, the CAESAR is just a new front end for the CAPTOR. Just like the V(3) radar for the F-15Cs is. Its nowhere near the capability of the US radars in service, or entering service now.

1. You have no intel on the performance figures of any of these radars.
2. You have no idea what the RCS is of the F-22A or F-35.

Another issue: The Typhoons RCS should be much higher, being a bit less than the F-16s. It still has a mechanically steered array.

Inconsistencies: How come the Su-35 and Su-27 differ soo much in RCS?

Why the F-35 will usually win in Air-to-Air versus the Tiffy:
STEALTH!

Even with the newest radars, ala, CAESAR, the F-35 can close within AIM-9X firing range! Using datalinks and the ability to work with other platforms, such as AWACS or even fellow non-stealthy platforms (F/A-18F), then it can really pack a whollop.

With stealth, the attacking platform can always have the advantage.

boff180 wrote:This still DOES NOT answer this, why just 4... in an active war scenario and defending you would fly with a full A2A load

Does it matter? Chances are they won't even get a shot off.

With F-35s operating in EMCON, they are as invisible as ghosts. As soon as the SHs detect the Typhoons, they pass up the data to the F-35s. F-35s shoot. Tiffys are dead.

The F-35 has the potential to be the better AtA platform due to its LOW RCS characteristics. Its biggest drawback is only being able to haul 2 AAMs. :)

But in any operation against the USA, you'll have to face the F-22As. Even knowing you're going to be attacked really doesnt help in preparing for it.
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