F-35 & F-16 (Block 50 +) - Comparison of frontal view.

The F-35 compared with other modern jets.
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geogen

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Unread post11 Feb 2011, 10:40

I'd beg to differ in my conjecture, Shep... configured as shown (w/ 3 EFT + CFT, 2 LJDAM, 4 AAM, tgt pod), the F-16 would probably achieve beyond 750nm radius? Very draggy and heavy, no question, but as someone mentioned too, if on the return trip the requirement was to drop empty EFT the drag would be drastically reduced further extending radius.

So I'd disagree and suggest the eventually cleared block IV F-35A would indeed require 2x EFT to match the range of shown F-16 loadout.

Exec - I appreciate your informed input and would only counter by considering that as the tech improves, high-performance optical/IR apertures could prove economical, effective and very capable. Not as a stand-alone sensor or superior than radar, but not to underestimated imho as effective contribution to a future IADS sensor net.. on acoustics, it might be less effective and would concur with you. Just my gut-assessment of course. On an opponent turning off air defense radars to avoid being tgt'd by name your aircraft here... then you've just achieved the objective of SEAD? I.e., a hypothetical counter-strike retaliatory force is then able to release extended stand-off munitions or decoys, whathaveyou. Turn back on radars to engage said munitions? Well, then be trgt'd by SEAD assets from stand-off?? I don't know how it works for sure of course (and don't need to know it), but that's just a hypothetical argument based on one possible scenario as I see it. Respects.
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shep1978

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Unread post11 Feb 2011, 10:54

geogen wrote:I'd beg to differ in my conjecture, Shep... configured as shown (w/ 3 EFT + CFT, 2 LJDAM, 4 AAM, tgt pod), the F-16 would probably achieve beyond 750nm radius? Very draggy and heavy,


I think it may be able to go 750nm, without the weapons.
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qwe2008

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Unread post11 Feb 2011, 13:03

geogen wrote:I'd beg to differ in my conjecture, Shep... configured as shown (w/ 3 EFT + CFT, 2 LJDAM, 4 AAM, tgt pod), the F-16 would probably achieve beyond 750nm radius?


When combined with a 320-gal. centerline tank and two 600-gal. underwing tanks, the F-16ES had an unrefueled mission radius of 1,025 mi. (with a typical strike load of two 2,000-lb. bombs and four air-to-air missiles), representing a 40% increase in range.
After losing the Israeli contract to the F-15I, LMTAS re-used some ES technologies (like the CFTs) in new F-16 models like the Block 60.
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majorzaid

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Unread post12 Feb 2011, 22:00

geogen wrote:I'd beg to differ in my conjecture, Shep... configured as shown (w/ 3 EFT + CFT, 2 LJDAM, 4 AAM, tgt pod), the F-16 would probably achieve beyond 750nm radius? Very draggy and heavy, no question, but as someone mentioned too, if on the return trip the requirement was to drop empty EFT the drag would be drastically reduced further extending radius.

So I'd disagree and suggest the eventually cleared block IV F-35A would indeed require 2x EFT to match the range of shown F-16 loadout.

Exec - I appreciate your informed input and would only counter by considering that as the tech improves, high-performance optical/IR apertures could prove economical, effective and very capable. Not as a stand-alone sensor or superior than radar, but not to underestimated imho as effective contribution to a future IADS sensor net.. on acoustics, it might be less effective and would concur with you. Just my gut-assessment of course. On an opponent turning off air defense radars to avoid being tgt'd by name your aircraft here... then you've just achieved the objective of SEAD? I.e., a hypothetical counter-strike retaliatory force is then able to release extended stand-off munitions or decoys, whathaveyou. Turn back on radars to engage said munitions? Well, then be trgt'd by SEAD assets from stand-off?? I don't know how it works for sure of course (and don't need to know it), but that's just a hypothetical argument based on one possible scenario as I see it. Respects.


Geogen, you're missing the point. I never stated that the pictures I posted were intended to be exact or precise representations of the two planes. I went out of my way to state that the the F-16 was depicted with additional stores, and that the photos were roughly accurate for scale, etc.

The primary limitation is finding good photos, or drawings of an F-16 with CFTs and Navigation/Targeting pods. There aren't many pictures of the F-16 from dead on, in that configuration.

I could have photoshopped additional tanks and missiles onto the F-35, or removed the same amount of stores from the F-16. However, the main point I was making, is that a legacy fighter like the F-16 is going to likely be saddled with additional drag and weight to try to match only some of the capabilities of the newer fighters like the F-35.

Also, so far as I know, you are not going to jettison CFTs, Nav-Tac pods, or weapons pylons. So, the drag and weight induced by them will be present at all times.
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geogen

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Unread post13 Feb 2011, 07:49

Qwe, thanks for that insight. (significant range for F-16 w/3 EFT + CFT ... hence, far superior to that of clean F-35).

Even if what you estimated is fairly accurate data, then it's what I had assessed myself and had remembered from past discussions too. I'm sorry to those who disagree with this specific performance capability, but F-35 would clearly need EFT in the expected block IV update, to come close in range.

majorz - thanks for comment and I only contributed my own little artwork for sake of anyone's interest as to what BOTH aircraft might look like in a similar loadout and mission profile.
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shep1978

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Unread post13 Feb 2011, 09:37

*Sure the F-16 does indeed seem to outrange it, but come on, look at that thing loaded like that it'll have the maneuverability and RCS of a Mack truck! If an enemy wants to go air to air or a SAM spots it on the way to its target then its pretty much screwed as the pilot either has to dump everything to gain the ability to maneuver and escape back home or he will probably die, as will the aircraft.

Of course if someone kitted out an F-35 with EFT and those nasty bloated CFT's it'd probably go as far (plus it'd be a superior platform and a damn sight more survivable)

* I do still have my doubts about the F-16ES's range too, I see that the info on it came this site but what was the source..?
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energo

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Unread post13 Feb 2011, 16:43

qwe2008 wrote:
geogen wrote:I'd beg to differ in my conjecture, Shep... configured as shown (w/ 3 EFT + CFT, 2 LJDAM, 4 AAM, tgt pod), the F-16 would probably achieve beyond 750nm radius?


When combined with a 320-gal. centerline tank and two 600-gal. underwing tanks, the F-16ES had an unrefueled mission radius of 1,025 mi. (with a typical strike load of two 2,000-lb. bombs and four air-to-air missiles), representing a 40% increase in range.


Factor in longer deroutes around air defences, and low-flying/terrain mapping flight profiles. It's going to burn fuel fast. And it will require more support assets; let's hope the weakest link can keep up. :crazypilot:

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Unread post13 Feb 2011, 20:05

energo wrote:
qwe2008 wrote:
geogen wrote:I'd beg to differ in my conjecture, Shep... configured as shown (w/ 3 EFT + CFT, 2 LJDAM, 4 AAM, tgt pod), the F-16 would probably achieve beyond 750nm radius?


When combined with a 320-gal. centerline tank and two 600-gal. underwing tanks, the F-16ES had an unrefueled mission radius of 1,025 mi. (with a typical strike load of two 2,000-lb. bombs and four air-to-air missiles), representing a 40% increase in range.


Factor in longer deroutes around air defences, and low-flying/terrain mapping flight profiles. It's going to burn fuel fast. And it will require more support assets; let's hope the weakest link can keep up. :crazypilot:

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Bingo!

You can't simply compare straight line distance, at the same altitude/airspeed. Much of that range advantage will be lost, trying to stay alive. The fact of the matter is that on internal fuel only, the F-35 will be able to hit targets deeper in enemy territory. In permissive environments, the F-35 can carry EFTs too.
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geogen

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Unread post14 Feb 2011, 03:55

wrightwing wrote:
energo wrote:
qwe2008 wrote:
geogen wrote:I'd beg to differ in my conjecture, Shep... configured as shown (w/ 3 EFT + CFT, 2 LJDAM, 4 AAM, tgt pod), the F-16 would probably achieve beyond 750nm radius?


When combined with a 320-gal. centerline tank and two 600-gal. underwing tanks, the F-16ES had an unrefueled mission radius of 1,025 mi. (with a typical strike load of two 2,000-lb. bombs and four air-to-air missiles), representing a 40% increase in range.


Factor in longer deroutes around air defences, and low-flying/terrain mapping flight profiles. It's going to burn fuel fast. And it will require more support assets; let's hope the weakest link can keep up. :crazypilot:

B. Bolsøy
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Bingo!

You can't simply compare straight line distance, at the same altitude/airspeed. Much of that range advantage will be lost, trying to stay alive. The fact of the matter is that on internal fuel only, the F-35 will be able to hit targets deeper in enemy territory. In permissive environments, the F-35 can carry EFTs too.


OK, I'll bite.

Add ALQ-218 derivative (V3) on F-16 SF - Strategic Falcon's - wingtips, SoJ coverage from either Thales AESA based EA pod or Rafael/Elta's ng SoJ in your package and bingo... the originally depicted F-16 on this thread will fly smarter and FARTHER than block III F-35 and possibly even block IV with EFT!

So I'm sorry Energo, with all due respect sir, but with regards to the discussion of 'RANGE' here the F-16's triple EFT + CFT loadout, vs an initial IOC block III F-35A, is a No contest in the range debate.
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Unread post14 Feb 2011, 05:21

geogen wrote:
wrightwing wrote:
energo wrote:
qwe2008 wrote:
geogen wrote:I'd beg to differ in my conjecture, Shep... configured as shown (w/ 3 EFT + CFT, 2 LJDAM, 4 AAM, tgt pod), the F-16 would probably achieve beyond 750nm radius?


When combined with a 320-gal. centerline tank and two 600-gal. underwing tanks, the F-16ES had an unrefueled mission radius of 1,025 mi. (with a typical strike load of two 2,000-lb. bombs and four air-to-air missiles), representing a 40% increase in range.


Factor in longer deroutes around air defences, and low-flying/terrain mapping flight profiles. It's going to burn fuel fast. And it will require more support assets; let's hope the weakest link can keep up. :crazypilot:

B. Bolsøy
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Bingo!

You can't simply compare straight line distance, at the same altitude/airspeed. Much of that range advantage will be lost, trying to stay alive. The fact of the matter is that on internal fuel only, the F-35 will be able to hit targets deeper in enemy territory. In permissive environments, the F-35 can carry EFTs too.


OK, I'll bite.

Add ALQ-218 derivative (V3) on F-16 SF - Strategic Falcon's - wingtips, SoJ coverage from either Thales AESA based EA pod or Rafael/Elta's ng SoJ in your package and bingo... the originally depicted F-16 on this thread will fly smarter and FARTHER than block III F-35 and possibly even block IV with EFT!

So I'm sorry Energo, with all due respect sir, but with regards to the discussion of 'RANGE' here the F-16's triple EFT + CFT loadout, vs an initial IOC block III F-35A, is a No contest in the range debate.


You can add all of the pods you like, but there's airspace that F-16s simply can't survive in. This means that the extra fuel has to be used for circuitous routes, and low altitude ingress. So....in terms of straight line distances to targets, the F-16 won't have an appreciable advantage, with regards to deep strikes in non-permissive airspace. Who's gonna invest the money to have gold-plated F-16s, that cost as much or more than more survivable aircraft, which will be useful for decades to come.
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geogen

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Unread post14 Feb 2011, 06:46

I hear your argument WW, but have to immediately reply by saying in such an 'airspace' you depict, it could be argued to best defend or engage such an airspace in a future deterrence role, via next-gen stand-off munitions, UCAVs, or yes, the F-22 (which is the opinion of some, why USAF required more units for the high-end of mix and should not have prematurely ended that line).

USAF will unfortunatly NOT be able to afford anywhere close to the fully expected complement of F-35A aircraft, or close to the currently still FRP rate of 75+ units per yr. Rather, by FY16, USAF will be fortunate to afford 25-30 units @ $175m PUC cost each. Reduced buying power aside, federal budgets will be cut. Yes, that means annual Defense appropriations will be significantly cut from the current $510-520B budget over the next 5+ yrs. AF procurement will take a more than proportionate haircut of course, accordingly. So now what... Well, that is or should be the crux the entire tacair procurement matter - for which I still don't think is part of the equation in these discussions yet. Nothing more, nothing less.

And lastly, 'Souped up and gold-plated' F-16s today would first off be proven and operational airframes... and secondly, would be significantly less per PUC cost than the F-35A.
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Unread post14 Feb 2011, 09:09

geogen wrote:
OK, I'll bite.

Add ALQ-218 derivative (V3) on F-16 SF - Strategic Falcon's - wingtips, SoJ coverage from either Thales AESA based EA pod or Rafael/Elta's ng SoJ in your package and bingo... the originally depicted F-16 on this thread will fly smarter and FARTHER than block III F-35 and possibly even block IV with EFT!

So I'm sorry Energo, with all due respect sir, but with regards to the discussion of 'RANGE' here the F-16's triple EFT + CFT loadout, vs an initial IOC block III F-35A, is a No contest in the range debate.


This is just getting silly now, you don't really believe that what you're typing is true do you? If you do then you have no comprehension of the value of low RCS and the inherent disadvantages of flying around in a high RCS paltform. You clearly don't grasp what Energo is quite correctly telling you either. And adding yet even more weight to that souped up F-16 in the form of pods...?

And with that it's time to stop wasting time on this one.
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Unread post14 Feb 2011, 15:06

geogen wrote:I hear your argument WW, but have to immediately reply by saying in such an 'airspace' you depict, it could be argued to best defend or engage such an airspace in a future deterrence role, via next-gen stand-off munitions, UCAVs, or yes, the F-22 (which is the opinion of some, why USAF required more units for the high-end of mix and should not have prematurely ended that line).

USAF will unfortunatly NOT be able to afford anywhere close to the fully expected complement of F-35A aircraft, or close to the currently still FRP rate of 75+ units per yr. Rather, by FY16, USAF will be fortunate to afford 25-30 units @ $175m PUC cost each. Reduced buying power aside, federal budgets will be cut. Yes, that means annual Defense appropriations will be significantly cut from the current $510-520B budget over the next 5+ yrs. AF procurement will take a more than proportionate haircut of course, accordingly. So now what... Well, that is or should be the crux the entire tacair procurement matter - for which I still don't think is part of the equation in these discussions yet. Nothing more, nothing less.

And lastly, 'Souped up and gold-plated' F-16s today would first off be proven and operational airframes... and secondly, would be significantly less per PUC cost than the F-35A.


An F-16 like you're describing would cost more than Block 60 F-16s, which are already in the $ 60-70m range. Full rate production F-35s won't cost anywhere near $175 ea. LRIP F-35s are only ~$109-120m, which is already $100m less than the first batches, and with nowhere near the economies of scale that full rate production will afford. You're also making the assumption that buys will be 25-30 per year, which isn't even close to what the output will be after the LRIP buy is finished(especially considering the export birds that will also be in the pipeline).
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Unread post15 Feb 2011, 09:43

Save your breath WW. Geogen knows fully well $175 miillion isn't the cost of the F-35 as we've been through this 5 or 6 times before as recently as just 2 or 3 months ago. At least he's toned it down from the $975 million or whatever stupid figure it was that he was claiming it cost a while back on this board and others.
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Unread post17 Feb 2011, 15:43

Well the Russians have 150 (GSh-301)
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