What the Chinese think about Russian Su-35S

Military aircraft - Post cold war aircraft, including for example B-2, Gripen, F-18E/F Super Hornet, Rafale, and Typhoon.
  • Author
  • Message
Offline

sprstdlyscottsmn

Elite 4K

Elite 4K

  • Posts: 4481
  • Joined: 10 Mar 2006, 01:24
  • Location: Phoenix, Az, USA

Unread post08 Mar 2019, 16:15

milosh wrote:
40km against 5m2 for missile seeker is VERY hard to achieved especially in small volume.

Using the AESACalcTrial I set up a 100 element array (10x10) antenna with 8W modules in a 10x10 degree search and come up with 36.2km "tracking" (90+% detection) on a 5m^2 target.
"Spurts"

-Pilot
-Aerospace Engineer
-Army Medic
-FMS Systems Engineer
Offline

tphuang

Enthusiast

Enthusiast

  • Posts: 49
  • Joined: 13 Aug 2018, 02:42

Unread post08 Mar 2019, 17:57

mixelflick wrote:So getting back to what the Chinese think of the SU-35... :)

I wonder what they think about its missiles? The R-27 is hopelessly out-dated, I presume they instead ordered the R-77? Curious to know what they think there. If the reports about the PL-15/21 are accurate, I have to believe they'll be attempting to fit it to the SU-35..

In any case, the Flanker never really got the BVR weapon it really needs. I'm not at all convinced of the R-77's efficacy. So you wind up with a big, powerful fighter with an absurdly powerful/rangy radar but... without the weapons to take advantage of it. I can see now why the Russians put such an emphasis on "super-maneuverability". They never had much data on BVR successes, unlike the Americans.

Also, if the R-33 is such a wonder weapon... why not fit it to the Flanker/SU-57? In the Flanker's case, I'd think it'd be ideal, perhaps carried in the tunnel. In the case of the SU-57, it doesn't look so large as to prevent internal carriage. Granted, you may only be able to carry 1 to 4 of them, but still... A weapon with 100 mile range, that's said to be effective vs. everything from low and slow to fast and high? As in over Mach 3 and 70,000 plus feet high? Multiple shot too, unlike the R-27's which are carried (mostly) today by Flankers..


Chinese think very little of Russian weapons. R-27 is obviously a different generation and don't have active seekers, so they are not going forward in the future.

R-73 was great when they first got them, but are now hopelessly outclassed by the newer generation SRAAM with HOB, IIR seeker and LOAL capability.

R-77 is good for a first generation MRAAM with active seeker, but they were slow to deliver it to PLAAF. And now PLAAF has much better options. I think the people in chinese military industrial complex are walking hard at integration homegrown missiles with su-35.

They will keep upgrading PL-10 and PL12/15. Expecting Russians to deliver anything on time is a pipe dream.
Last edited by tphuang on 08 Mar 2019, 18:06, edited 1 time in total.
Offline

tphuang

Enthusiast

Enthusiast

  • Posts: 49
  • Joined: 13 Aug 2018, 02:42

Unread post08 Mar 2019, 18:02

mixelflick wrote:So Russian BVR AAM's leave a lot to be desired. I don't think there's much debate about this, unless you happen to hang your hat on the R-33... In which case, I don't think we have any combat data on that weapon. It looks fearsome. The Russians say so, but without evaluating it in combat I guess even they don't really know.

That appears to be their achilles heel, along with engines and to a lesser extent avionics.

The Chinese apparently have the opposite problem: Great AAM's (but again, no combat data on them) along with very good radar. Their engines are abysmal though, way behind even the Russians.

But back to the topic at hand: Sounds like the Chinese were impressed with some areas of the SU-35, and less than impressed in others. They'll copy its engine though and that's what they bought it for. Remains to be seen how much of the tech makes it into the final iteration of their J-20's motors.

Right, su-35 is not a bad aircraft. Aerodynamically speaking, it's better than any flankers in Chinese service. But it also has deficiencies like avionics and missiles that make it less effective than even J-16 and J-10C.

As for engines, they are not going to copy 117S engine for J-20 when they have WS-15 in development. At this point, what they probably want is to be able to have complete overhaul capability of 117S like they do with AL-31FN, so that they can do all the maintenance and overhauling in China. But it really doesn't make a lot of sense for them to copy an engine that will be outclassed by 2025.
Offline

milosh

Forum Veteran

Forum Veteran

  • Posts: 813
  • Joined: 27 Feb 2008, 23:40
  • Location: Serbia, Belgrade

Unread post09 Mar 2019, 10:54

sprstdlyscottsmn wrote:
milosh wrote:
40km against 5m2 for missile seeker is VERY hard to achieved especially in small volume.

Using the AESACalcTrial I set up a 100 element array (10x10) antenna with 8W modules in a 10x10 degree search and come up with 36.2km "tracking" (90+% detection) on a 5m^2 target.


You can't just calculate antenna performance without take in account cooling and power for it which is very problematic in case of missiles because space is problem.

If I remember correctly, AAM-4B seeker have 40% better range then non aesa seeker. So if old one had 15km range then B have ~20km and if it was 20km then B is 28km, which is not even close to 40km which is range for aesa PL-12 . This is why I said I really doubt 40km claim.

Maybe long range missile China is developing could be 40km because its diameter is noticeable bigger then PL-12:
https://combataircraft.keypublishing.co ... AQYsuM.jpg
Offline

mixelflick

Elite 3K

Elite 3K

  • Posts: 3437
  • Joined: 20 Mar 2010, 10:26
  • Location: Parts Unknown

Unread post09 Mar 2019, 14:35

tphuang wrote:
mixelflick wrote:So Russian BVR AAM's leave a lot to be desired. I don't think there's much debate about this, unless you happen to hang your hat on the R-33... In which case, I don't think we have any combat data on that weapon. It looks fearsome. The Russians say so, but without evaluating it in combat I guess even they don't really know.

That appears to be their achilles heel, along with engines and to a lesser extent avionics.

The Chinese apparently have the opposite problem: Great AAM's (but again, no combat data on them) along with very good radar. Their engines are abysmal though, way behind even the Russians.

But back to the topic at hand: Sounds like the Chinese were impressed with some areas of the SU-35, and less than impressed in others. They'll copy its engine though and that's what they bought it for. Remains to be seen how much of the tech makes it into the final iteration of their J-20's motors.

Right, su-35 is not a bad aircraft. Aerodynamically speaking, it's better than any flankers in Chinese service. But it also has deficiencies like avionics and missiles that make it less effective than even J-16 and J-10C.

As for engines, they are not going to copy 117S engine for J-20 when they have WS-15 in development. At this point, what they probably want is to be able to have complete overhaul capability of 117S like they do with AL-31FN, so that they can do all the maintenance and overhauling in China. But it really doesn't make a lot of sense for them to copy an engine that will be outclassed by 2025.


So if it's outclassed by the J-10C and J-16, and its avionics and weapons are inferior to Chinese models. And the 117S will be obsolete soon... why did they buy it again?

I'm guessing range maybe?

Not sure if drop tanks were part of the package, but an SU-35 with tanks should be the longest ranged PLAAF fighter... perhaps even longer ranged than the J-20. I was just under the impression all along the engine was what they were acquiring it for. Either they did too (and found out otherwise), or they had some basic curiosity as to its "other" capabilities.

Sounds like after tearing it apart, they found most of it wanting?
Offline

milosh

Forum Veteran

Forum Veteran

  • Posts: 813
  • Joined: 27 Feb 2008, 23:40
  • Location: Serbia, Belgrade

Unread post09 Mar 2019, 19:11

mixelflick wrote:So if it's outclassed by the J-10C and J-16, and its avionics and weapons are inferior to Chinese models. And the 117S will be obsolete soon... why did they buy it again?


By that Chinese text, their aesa radars are better BUT they are impressed with N035 radar long range in narrow search mode which their aesa radars don't have, probable they aren't good with software for (P/A)ESA fighter radars becuase they only begin working on them in 2000s while NIIP Tihomirov is writing software for PESA fighter radars from early 1970s.

AL-41 isn't obsolete because WS-15 is bigger engine it is closer to F135 then to AL-31. So WS-15 couldn't be used for Chinese flankers nor for J-10. WS-15 for now is only planned for J-20. I expect they are planing to get AL-41 licence in future.
Online

weasel1962

Elite 1K

Elite 1K

  • Posts: 1711
  • Joined: 07 Jun 2012, 02:41
  • Location: Singapore

Unread post10 Mar 2019, 07:39

Maybe people are reading too much into this. Last year I did a count and there are maybe 17 J-7 Air brigades (Scramble still shows 22) that could still be operation not including another 2-3 training units. All these need replacement.

The Su-35, being the most advanced fighter on sale from the Russians, could just be a gap filler whilst the PLAAF ramps up J-16 production. Looked how fast the PLAAF brought the Su-35 into service. Practically flying around Taiwan after delivery. Ease of induction suggests the Su-35 aren't too different from the other suks.
Offline

knowan

Active Member

Active Member

  • Posts: 246
  • Joined: 24 Jul 2018, 10:39

Unread post10 Mar 2019, 08:38

milosh wrote:AL-41 isn't obsolete because WS-15 is bigger engine it is closer to F135 then to AL-31. So WS-15 couldn't be used for Chinese flankers nor for J-10. WS-15 for now is only planned for J-20. I expect they are planing to get AL-41 licence in future.


F135 actually has a smaller maximum diameter (46" vs 50") than the AL-31/41, although it is about half a meter longer, and probably heavier.

WS-15 is reportedly only 40" in diameter and around the same length as the AL-31/41. Probably around the same or slightly lower weight.
If the WS-15 is reliable and has a good enough mean time between overhauls, then it likely does obsolete the AL-31/41, but that's a big if; it is fairly unlikely China has achieved such reliability yet.
Offline

mixelflick

Elite 3K

Elite 3K

  • Posts: 3437
  • Joined: 20 Mar 2010, 10:26
  • Location: Parts Unknown

Unread post10 Mar 2019, 15:25

Tphuang, what do you mean when you say, "aerodynamically speaking the SU-35 is better than the other Flankers in Chinese service"?

I realize it's bigger, but the basic platform looks similar (if not identical) to earlier Flankers. Widely spaced engine nacelles, the "tunnel" providing space for lower drag weapons/lift/fuel. Blended wing/body, twin tails, etc.. The basic Flanker airframe looks draggy, and that seems to be true of the SU-35 as well.

Is there something special about that SU-35 that aerodynamically sets it apart? For some reason, I'm just not seeing it...
Offline

madrat

Elite 2K

Elite 2K

  • Posts: 2290
  • Joined: 03 Mar 2010, 03:12

Unread post10 Mar 2019, 17:07

Chinese Flankers are most two-seat versions with older Al-31 non-TVC versions. This would be a big minus compared to Su-35S. One of the Su-35S selling points was that TVC reduces needs for control surface deflections, reducing drag.
Offline

milosh

Forum Veteran

Forum Veteran

  • Posts: 813
  • Joined: 27 Feb 2008, 23:40
  • Location: Serbia, Belgrade

Unread post10 Mar 2019, 19:12

knowan wrote:
milosh wrote:AL-41 isn't obsolete because WS-15 is bigger engine it is closer to F135 then to AL-31. So WS-15 couldn't be used for Chinese flankers nor for J-10. WS-15 for now is only planned for J-20. I expect they are planing to get AL-41 licence in future.


F135 actually has a smaller maximum diameter (46" vs 50") than the AL-31/41, although it is about half a meter longer, and probably heavier.

WS-15 is reportedly only 40" in diameter and around the same length as the AL-31/41. Probably around the same or slightly lower weight.
If the WS-15 is reliable and has a good enough mean time between overhauls, then it likely does obsolete the AL-31/41, but that's a big if; it is fairly unlikely China has achieved such reliability yet.


Max diameter is tricky to be used for comparison. Inlet diameter is much better for comparison. AL-41 inlet is 93.2cm while F135 is 109cm. So if you look engine volume F135 is noticable bigger (wider and longer) then AL-41.
Offline

knowan

Active Member

Active Member

  • Posts: 246
  • Joined: 24 Jul 2018, 10:39

Unread post10 Mar 2019, 20:22

milosh wrote:
knowan wrote:
milosh wrote:AL-41 isn't obsolete because WS-15 is bigger engine it is closer to F135 then to AL-31. So WS-15 couldn't be used for Chinese flankers nor for J-10. WS-15 for now is only planned for J-20. I expect they are planing to get AL-41 licence in future.


F135 actually has a smaller maximum diameter (46" vs 50") than the AL-31/41, although it is about half a meter longer, and probably heavier.

WS-15 is reportedly only 40" in diameter and around the same length as the AL-31/41. Probably around the same or slightly lower weight.
If the WS-15 is reliable and has a good enough mean time between overhauls, then it likely does obsolete the AL-31/41, but that's a big if; it is fairly unlikely China has achieved such reliability yet.


Max diameter is tricky to be used for comparison. Inlet diameter is much better for comparison. AL-41 inlet is 93.2cm while F135 is 109cm. So if you look engine volume F135 is noticable bigger (wider and longer) then AL-41.


Sure, but the WS-15 isn't, at least according to dimensions quoted on the internet.

If China does get the WS-15 working reliably and it is similar in size to the AL-31/41, then it very likely will make the AL-41 obsolete.

I'm honestly doubtful they can get it working reliably within the next 10 years though, so I expect China will show a lot of interest in importing AL-41 engines.
Offline

milosh

Forum Veteran

Forum Veteran

  • Posts: 813
  • Joined: 27 Feb 2008, 23:40
  • Location: Serbia, Belgrade

Unread post10 Mar 2019, 23:38

knowan wrote:Sure, but the WS-15 isn't, at least according to dimensions quoted on the internet.

If China does get the WS-15 working reliably and it is similar in size to the AL-31/41, then it very likely will make the AL-41 obsolete.

I'm honestly doubtful they can get it working reliably within the next 10 years though, so I expect China will show a lot of interest in importing AL-41 engines.


There is lot unknown about WS-15 for example you will see 180kN thurst which I don't see how they could pull from AL-31 size engine.

AL-51 which is new engine for PAK-FA, could maybe be 160kN but I doubt that, I expect better dry thrust and lower price (this is confirmed) then AL-41.
Offline

fidgetspinner

Banned

  • Posts: 67
  • Joined: 17 Nov 2018, 02:27
  • Warnings: 2

Unread post11 Mar 2019, 03:38

knowan wrote:You're comparing the seeker in a 200mm diameter to one in a 380mm diameter missile. If China can match the performance of a vastly larger seeker with their PL-12, then it is a damning indictment of how poor Russian seekers are.


Regarding that source there is no way of telling to what RCS they are referencing that 40km autonomous range engagement because the PL-XX was designed specifically for aircrafts like AWACs meaning we do not have any information as to what target RCS they are talking about since there is a chance that its not a 3m2 target.

I am sure that I can bet you that the radar seeker they are developing with that claimed range would be around 2020 or passed that date and the missile seeker that I am speaking of without having to look at sources was probably developed in the 1990s. I hope that you do know at least that the K-77M and K-37M have different seekers than the r-77 and r-37 right?

Other sources to consider.

http://integral-russia.ru/2017/09/16/da ... ebitelyam/

"After all, if the Chinese Air Force already has a decent asymmetric response to the future JNAAM Air Defense Forces of Japan in the form of ultra-long-range "air assassins" PL-12D / 15 / 21D, almost ready for mass production, our project RVV-AE-PD all still is "in a long box," which, apparently, no one is supposed to open."

Damn, calling Chinas latest missiles decent how can they get away with that? So not only do we have Chinese undermining Russian missiles but we have Russians as well undermining Chinas latest missiles in development.

https://aviationweek.com/awin/japan-upg ... m-4-japg-2

“The crucial claim was that the AAM-4B could switch to autonomous guidance at a 40% greater range than either of the other two missiles and would similarly outperform what was expected to be the 2009 standard of the Russian R-77 (AA-12 Adder). In a 2010 paper, the ministry attributed the seeker's greater performance to the higher transmitting power available from the AESA.”

http://tokyoexpress.info/2018/01/22/日英共同開発のmbda「ミーテイア」ミサイル試射は2022/

"Because "AAM-4B" is thicker than "Meetiaa(" (AAM-4B / 20.3 cm versus Meetia / 17.8 cm), the seeker mounted in "Meetia" decreases cross section by 20% and the number of TR units Will be less, but because it is an improved type, the detection performance is said to be equal or better than expected.”

"As mentioned above, the AESA seeker using the Ga-N made TR element doubles the power consumption compared to the PASA radar using the Ga-As element which is currently mounted in "Meetiaa", but the detection ability (distance and size ) Is remarkably improved."

"Russia will equip the Su-57 fighter with air-to-air missile K-77M. The K - 77 series missile started development as a medium range air - to - air missile against the US AIM - 120 AMRAAM by the Vympel design station from 1982. Russian Air Force, China India are also exported and used in large quantities. The latest version of the K - 77M adopts the AESA radar for the seeker, and uses a solid fuel rocket and a ramjet in combination to extend the range to 150 km +."

Now not to be a comedian but I am sure that we both can agree that the Chinese are on the same boat as the Russians are in terms of military affairs with Japan right? So why is Japan(country that is supposedly the best in the semi-conductor industry) more concerned with Russian air to air missiles than they are with Chinese air to air missiles? I got some interesting sources posted here but I truly wish to know more about the LREW missile the US is developing besides having a host AESA radar as well if anyone has information on that here?
Offline

mixelflick

Elite 3K

Elite 3K

  • Posts: 3437
  • Joined: 20 Mar 2010, 10:26
  • Location: Parts Unknown

Unread post11 Mar 2019, 16:08

Info on LREW is tough to come by, and rightfully so. Has been in development since 2016, but modest amounts (10 million) seem to have been allocated in 2016/17 only. LREW completed systems design, engineering and kill-chain investigations in FY 2017.

Curiously, there were nothing allocated to it in 2018.

No idea what it means. Could be they didn't like what they saw. Could mean they had something off the shelf (although that's real doubtful). The capability is sorely needed, so no idea why funding would have dried up. To my mind, it's a complete mystery...
PreviousNext

Return to Modern Military Aircraft

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 18 guests