NEXTAAM [cryptic huh] [Next AAM]

F-35 Armament, fuel tanks, internal and external hardpoints, loadouts, and other stores.
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spazsinbad

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Unread post12 Jul 2016, 06:15

NEXTAAM
12 Jul 2016 John A. Tirpak

"Farnborough, UK—The Air Force urgently needs an all-new class of air-to-air missiles, Air Combat Command chief Gen. Hawk Carlisle said Monday. To accomplish the air superiority mission that was supposed to have been handled by twice as many F-22s and F-35s joining the fleet at 100 a year—instead of the 187 F-22s and only 48 F-35s a year—a "combination of fifth generation aircraft … and a fifth generation weapon is the next big thing we have to move into," Carlisle told reporters.

The just-completed Air Superiority 2030 analysis indicates "we have to keep the F-35 buy rate up," Carlisle said, and "we have to get at a new missile." A program of record will be coming "soon," he added, without naming a date. The AIM-120D AMRAAM improvement program is "doing very well," he said, but "it's not what we need in the next generation of missiles."

To keep up with "what we see out there as the threat," a new missile will have to have longer range and better electronic warfare resiliency. Carlisle has also said previously that an AMRAAM successor should be smaller, to increase the number each fighter can carry, and have better agility. The F-35, he added, "does exceedingly well" at air-to-air combat, and is "truly an amazing air-to-air platform," and will be even better with a new weapon. But, "we have to get to a new missile."

Source: http://www.airforcemag.com/DRArchive/Pa ... XTAAM.aspx
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Unread post31 May 2017, 16:12

USAF developing next generation air dominance missile [BEST READ IT ALL AT SOURCE]
30 May 2017 Leigh Giangreco

"The US Air Force is developing a new air-to-air missile, dubbed the Small Advanced Capabilities Missile (SACM), to fly on its aircraft in the 2030s.

The Air Force Research Laboratory is looking to develop and demonstrate various system and sub-system critical technologies to support the next generation air dominance missile, according to slides released this April from AFRL. SACM would promise an improved solid rocket motor with a highly loaded grain and synergistic control enabled by combined aero, attitude control and thrust vectoring.

AFRL would design a small, low-weight ordnance with hyper-agility, increased range, high loadout and a compressed carriage capability. Slides describe a missile with “dramatically improved high off bore sight for rear hemisphere kills” and “lower cost per kill.” The missile would also incorporate energy optimizing guidance, navigation and control, according to AFRL....

...AFRL’s vision of a small missile with greater range and impact also tracks with Carlisle’s vision. The former chief believes technology will enable the USAF to achieve greater range within the current size and configuration for the F-35 and F-22.

“I can’t comment a lot on where we’re going to go with what we’re developing on technology, but I will tell you that we worked hard,” he says. “I think with the engine and motor technology for weapons we can get range, depending on what kind of profile and motor we use.”

Based on AFRL and Carlisle’s description, SACM could have shades of the USAF and Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s defunct joint dual-role air dominance missile (JDRADM) programme, which sought a combined air-to-air and air-to-ground missile for the F-22A and F-35, and external carriage on selected legacy aircraft. The air force effort spun a DARPA programme, the triple target terminator (T3) programme, which pursued a missile that could combine the capabilities of Raytheon’s AIM-120 and AGM-88 High-speed Anti-Radiation Missile (HARM)."

Source: https://www.flightglobal.com/news/artic ... il-437728/
A4G Skyhawk: www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ & www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/videos?view_as=subscriber
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Unread post31 May 2017, 20:25

Greater range in same or smaller form factor. Sounds like 3d printing is at work.
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Unread post31 May 2017, 20:34

Why would 3d printing have anything to do with it?

It has more to do with a larger & more efficient motor (no warhead = HTK) which means less drag. Add to that GPS enabled INS which allows the missile to use a more efficient arching profile where the terminal engagement is downhill where gravity is your friend.
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Unread post31 May 2017, 20:47

i think he might be thinking along the lines of http://www.nextbigfuture.com/2017/05/3d ... eadly.html

3d printing may enable novel, more efficient warhead and motor designs that were once too elaborate to fabricate.
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Unread post31 May 2017, 20:49

The key is the larger and more efficient motor. If you want to do that in the same form factor, you need some new production tricks to help you pack in the hardware and more efficient ducts cooling channels etc. If that's the case good bet 3d printing is enabling the new production process and design.

Just speculation on my part though.
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sferrin

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Unread post31 May 2017, 20:52

citanon wrote:The key is the larger and more efficient motor. If you want to do that in the same form factor, you need some new production tricks to help you pack in the hardware and more efficient ducts cooling channels etc. If that's the case good bet 3d printing is enabling the new production process and design.

Just speculation on my part though.


No effin' way are they "3d printing" a propellant grain.
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Unread post31 May 2017, 22:02

You can't print rocket propellant. You can print all the metal parts of the engine.

Is there some complication with make the ductwork etc separately and then putting in the fuel?

Or, is there no point to doing that with a solid fuel rocket?
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Unread post31 May 2017, 23:55

What I'd like to know is how are they increasing the energy in the fuel while keeping it stable? These solid fuels are akin to explosives already. I don't think you need 3D printing when lost wax and other more familiar methods allows complex shapes. Hopefully there will be a fly-off from which we can see competing designs.
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Unread post01 Jun 2017, 01:12

Maybe something like a CUDA but in 2 variants ie. a shorter SDB-sized version and an AMRAAM-sized one for even longer range?
"When a fifth-generation fighter meets a fourth-generation fighter—the [latter] dies,”
CSAF Gen. Mark Welsh
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Unread post01 Jun 2017, 01:47

popcorn wrote:Maybe something like a CUDA but in 2 variants ie. a shorter SDB-sized version and an AMRAAM-sized one for even longer range?


Or just one version but with the option of a strap-on booster.

Now, where have I seen that before??? :roll:

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Unread post01 Jun 2017, 02:04

That would work...
"When a fifth-generation fighter meets a fourth-generation fighter—the [latter] dies,”
CSAF Gen. Mark Welsh
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Unread post01 Jun 2017, 07:17

3D printing for rocket engine parts has been tested by NASA, SpaceX, Aerojet Rocketdyne and several universities around the world. Results have been extremely promising especially in lowering the time it takes to produce certain parts and lowering costs while improving consistency of end products. Naturally printing is suitable for producing certain parts and less suitable for others. I'm pretty sure 3D printing will be used for future AAMs in many ways, including this NEXTAAM.
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Unread post01 Jun 2017, 07:53

it's rocket science...

http://gizmodo.com/how-a-5-million-laun ... 1794211964


Instead of treating small satellites as an afterthought, Rocket Lab is centering on these projects, and the companies who want to launch them affordably. Its Electron rocket, whose Rutherford engine is constructed with 3D-printed carbon composite parts, is designed to keep down costs. “We chose 3D printing as it lends itself to rapid manufacturing, in turn reducing the cost and time of creation and increasing our ability to launch with higher frequency,” said Beck.
"When a fifth-generation fighter meets a fourth-generation fighter—the [latter] dies,”
CSAF Gen. Mark Welsh
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Unread post01 Jun 2017, 10:10

That's pretty much the kind of thing that I was thinking about. However, on second thought, regarding specifically the main motor, the benefits are much easier to see on liquid fueled rockets than on solid rockets.

On third thought, there are, apparently, schemes for throttling solid fuel rockets going back to the 1960s:

https://www.google.com/patents/US3065596
https://www.google.com/patents/US3065597
http://www.google.us/patents/US4357795
http://www.google.cat/patents/US4483139

One of the key enablers is control over the pressure in the nozzle. With 3D printing you could get quite intricate mechanisms in the interior of enclosed spaces, but I don't know if that would help. I suspect it might.

With 3D printed parts, you are also getting things like cooling channels and such built into engine parts. There are geometries that are difficult or impossible to do with other techniques. Again, harder to see how that could be relevant to solid fuel rockets, but that is literally rocket science.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sJTkhXjywpQ

Modern aerospace parts are printed using selective laser sintering or electron beam sintering. With careful control over feed grain and beam parameters you can get fully dense mechanically and thermally robust parts. Faster techniques are also coming online for less demanding metal applications:

https://www.desktopmetal.com/

In the end it's another tool in the manufacturing repertoire. I'm not certain it will help future AAMs, but wouldn't be surprised if it did.

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