F-35 Lightning II vs Dassault Rafale

The F-35 compared with other modern jets.
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Corsair1963

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Unread post09 Jun 2021, 06:09

Dassault Rafale in good position to win Switzerland tender?

As the decision on the next fighter jet to fly with the colors of the Swiss Air Force is about to be made, local media reports that the scales might be tilted in favor of the Dassault Rafale.

The Air 2030 tender was launched in 2020 following the positive outcome of a referendum on whether Switzerland should acquire or not new fighter jets. 50.1% of voters have voted “yes” to the procurement of new aircraft for the Swiss Air Force.

https://www.aerotime.aero/28110-dassaul ... and-tender



Swiss leaning toward Rafale jet purchase: report

Swiss order will replace the McDonnell Douglas F/A-18C/D Hornets and the remaining Northrop F-5E/F Tigers

by Dave Makichuk
June 9, 2021

After securing major contracts in Greece, Croatia, India and Egypt, French aeronautics firm Dassault Aviation is close to inking a major deal with Switzerland for the Rafale fighter jet, according to local media reports.

The Air 2030 tender for the Swiss Air Force was launched in 2020 following the positive outcome of a referendum on whether Switzerland should acquire new fighter jets.

According to AerotimeHub, 50.1% of voters have voted “yes” to the procurement estimated at 6 billion Swiss francs (roughly US$7 billion). The acquisition would concern 30 to 40 aircraft to be delivered by 2025.

The choice of the model of the new combat aircraft by the Federal Council could be made before the end of June 2021. If Switzerland was to pick the Rafale, it would mark yet another success for the French fighter jet.

The Rafale is still competing in Finland and is also being considered by Ukraine and Indonesia.


The Swiss order aims to replace the McDonnell Douglas F/A-18C/D Hornets and the few remaining Northrop F-5E/F Tiger II antiques that are still assigned to secondary tasks.

The main purpose of the upcoming multi-role fighter jet will be to carry out air policing missions.

Four contenders are currently in the race: the Dassault Rafale, the Lockheed Martin F-35, the Boeing F/A-18 Super Hornet, and the Eurofighter Typhoon. The Saab Gripen E/F was excluded as it will not be operational before 2023.

Six foreign customers are procuring and operating the F-35 — Israel, Japan, South Korea, Poland, Belgium and Singapore.

Lockheed Martin serves as the prime contractor with a global supply chain of more than 1,900 companies based in the US and in every nation acquiring the F-35 — a tempting consideration for governments trying to foster high-tech job creation.

However, the odds could be in favor of the French offer, according to Le Matin.

The first indication is that a US-based solution would be politically unwise.

The Swiss politicians who had initially campaigned against the procurement later voiced their opposition to the Boeing F-18, and even more so to the Lockheed Martin F-35.

“Buying the American F-35s, which are the most expensive, is excluded,” said Roger Nordmann, the leader of the Socialist group in the Federal Assembly.

The second element presented by Le Matin is that the Federal Office of Armaments (Amasuisse) recently acquired from the French manufacturer Thales the aerial surveillance system SkyView.

“Even if it is not compulsory, there would be consistency between a surveillance system of French origin and French planes,” the daily states.

The final argument, though slightly more anecdotal, is that the Rafale was the only aircraft highlighted by Priska Seiler Graf, a member of the Security Policy Commission which will decide on the fighter jet, in a question regarding the operational range of the Swiss Armed Forces.

For years, Croatia has been in the process of modernizing its air force by replacing older Soviet-era aircraft with both new and secondhand aircraft.

On May 28, the nation took a major leap forward by selecting the Dassault Rafale F3-R for its air force, following an international call for tenders as part of its Multi-Role Fighter Aircraft program.

Croatia is acquiring 12 second-hand aircraft from the French Air Force in a deal worth €999 million (US$1.2 billion). France is to deliver the first six aircraft in 2024, with the remainder following in 2025.


In addition to the aircraft, the deal also includes a flight simulator, basic weapons package, ground and test equipment, spare parts, staff training according to the principle of “training of trainers,” comprehensive support from authorized representatives of manufacturers for a period of three years, and a warranty of 12 months for each delivered aircraft, engines, other equipment, and spare parts.

Meanwhile, the Finnish Government will decide which of the companies’ fighters to purchase by the end of 2021.

The program is expected to cost €10 billion with requirements including not only the aircraft but also ‘technical systems, training systems, necessary maintenance equipment, test equipment and spare parts, along with weapons, sensors’ and other support equipment.

According to the Dassault website, The Rafale is a twin-jet fighter aircraft able to operate from both an aircraft carrier and a shore base.

The US$115 million jet fighter is able to carry out various combat aviation missions: air superiority and air defense, close air support, in-depth strikes, reconnaissance, anti-ship strikes and nuclear deterrence.

The Rafale entered service with the French Navy in 2004 and with the French Air Force in 2006. With more than 30,000 flight hours in operations, it has proven its worth in combat in Afghanistan, Libya, Mali, Iraq and Syria, the company said.

https://asiatimes.com/2021/06/swiss-lea ... se-report/
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Unread post09 Jun 2021, 11:18

I think that article in "Le Matin" is reading way too much into these things. I don't think acquiring Thales SkyView favours Rafale at all. Internal politics might favor Rafale somewhat, but I don't know enough about Swiss politics to really know that.

Another article with some interesting info:
https://www.forbes.com/sites/erictegler ... ar-choice/

“We’re in a great position … We’re going to come in at or below the cost of the 4th generation competitors so I think that makes us really competitive,” Robinson says.

He stresses that Lockheed’s proposal includes 40 aircraft (rather than the 36 reported) with significant industrial offset, priced within the $6.5 billion budget. He adds that unlike its competitors, the F-35 will not require the Swiss to buy additional accessories like launch rails, targeting pods or special weapons interfaces, all of which are integrated within the F-35A.

“The aircraft is ready on day one. You don’t need additional mission equipment to add capability to the aircraft,” Robinson says.

The Lightning II is also headed in the right direction in terms of volume, support and cost per flight hour (CPFH), Lockheed’s campaign manager asserts.



But Robinson maintains that the F-35’s sophistication makes it the only candidate viable in a broader air defense.

“In their Air 2030 upgrade program they are looking for a combined defensive air network. The F-35 in its quarterbacking role can provide valuable data as they look to upgrade their ground-based air defense systems.”

One might also question the value of stealth. As a former USAF F-16 pilot, Robinson says that he “would have loved to be sure the offensive air didn’t know where I was in my defensive counter-air role.”


In Lockheed’s case the sweeteners include the opportunity to produce about 400 canopies and transparencies (the canopy frame and glass) for the F-35 domestically. Switzerland would be the European hub for such work and take on unspecified engine and airframe sustainment projects for its own operations and possibly others.
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Unread post10 Jun 2021, 01:46

On technical merits and costs, the Swiss competition would appear to be a slam dunk for the F-35. BUT... the US was rather hard on the Swiss banking system in the past decade or so. That may tilt the intangible political factor against American competitors. With the neighboring Austrians apparently souring on the Typhoon in a big way, I think the Eurofighter is a long shot. Boing who? I think the Super Duper is pretty much forgotten. I would not be surprised if the Swiss opt for the Rafale. It's a decent jet. And I'd say good on the French.

If the primary role is really going to be air policing, then the Swiss coulda just bought whatever off the shelf. An armed BAE Hawk or Korean FA-50 is probably plenty. Or a Boing T-7 with missiles. But if the Swiss are serious, truly serious, about defending their nation, then IMO I don't see how you do not buy the F-35. Especially as LM has managed to bring down the purchase price, and, foreign nations especially, the cost of operations does not seem out of line.

Circling back around to the political intangibles that seem to weight against a LM win... I note that ULA, the 50-50 Boing / LM launch vehicle provider, has a pretty big manufacturing deal with the Swiss company Ruag for the production of composite payload fairings for both the Atlas V and forthcoming Vulcan Centaur rockets. So perhaps LM is in a better situation behind the scenes? Dunno.
Take an F-16, stir in A-7, dollop of F-117, gob of F-22, dash of F/A-18, sprinkle with AV-8B, stir well + bake. Whaddya get? F-35.
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Unread post10 Jun 2021, 13:20

It seems an initial contract for 36 Rafale to Indonesia has been signed on Monday.

Indonesia signed initial contract for the procurement of 36 @Dassault_OnAir Rafale omni-role fighters, says Angkasa Review website, a firm contract is still far away though

https://twitter.com/marhalimabas/status ... 5431045122

Good news, the Ministry of Defense and Dassault have signed the initial 36 Rafale contracts
June 10, 2021

AIRSPACE REVIEW (airspace-review.com) – Good news from the planned purchase of defense equipment by the Ministry of Defense of the Republic of Indonesia (Kemhan RI).

An Airspace Review source in Jakarta said the Indonesian Ministry of Defense and Dassault Aviation (the manufacturer of the Rafale ) from France had signed an initial contract for the procurement of 36 multi-role fighter jets.

The signing of the initial contract called the “Come Into Force” contract was signed on Monday, June 7, 2021 and will take effect in December 2021.

“The 'Come Into Force' contract was signed on Monday, June 7th. The contract will go into effect in December this year," said an AR source.

He added that Indonesia's journey to get the Rafale plane from France is still long.

The “Come Into Force” contract will then become the basis for the Effective Contract after all agreements between Indonesia and France are reached and Indonesia has paid an advance for the purchase of 36 Rafales.
Meanwhile, until now Indonesia and France have not reached agreement points for Trade Returns, Local Content and/or Offsets (IDKLO) in terms of the planned purchase of 36 Rafale.

As is known, Law no. 16 of 2012 concerning the Defense Industry mandates that the purchase of alpalhankam (defense and security equipment) from abroad must be accompanied by an IDKLO.

The plan to purchase Rafale fighter jets surfaced after the French daily, La Tribune, reported the intention of the Indonesian Minister of Defense Prabowo Subianto to buy this aircraft.

Prabowo met with the Minister of the French Armed Forces Florence Parly during a working visit in Paris, France on October 21, 2020.

In December 2020, La Tribune reported that Indonesia would buy 48 Rafale units from France.

Later, various reports stated that Indonesia would buy 36 Rafales from the Eiffel Tower country, not 48 as the initial reports.

Dassault has held a meeting with the Indonesian Ministry of Defense in Jakarta on February 21, 2021.

The Dassault team consists of Vice President of Dassault Aviation Business Development Jean Claude Piccharillo and Vice President of Offset Dassault Michael Paskoff.

Their arrival was received by the Director General of Defense Potential (Ditjen Pothan) of the Ministry of Defense Maj. Gen. Dadang Hendrayudha and the Director of Defense Industrial Technology (Dirtekindhan) Laksma TNI Sri Yanto.

https://www.airspace-review.com/2021/06 ... 36-rafale/

Previous 19 May La Tribune article:
Indonesia very, very close to boarding the Rafale

The contract for the acquisition of Rafale awaits a presidential decree, which will make it possible to supplement budget lines from the Ministry of Defense to finance this purchase.

However, the [Indonesian MoD Prabowo Subianto] minister still has to wait for a presidential decree from Joko Widodo decisive to abound budget lines for the benefit of the Ministry of Defense and thus ensure the financing of the contract before it can be made effective. According to a source familiar with the matter, the Indonesian Defense Minister is expected to meet in "the next few weeks" his counterpart, Florence Parly, who had mentioned in December an order for 36 Rafale by Jakarta. The CEO of Dassault Aviation Eric Trappier mentioned last January an order of between 24 and forty fighters.

The industrial proposal and the contractualization have been made. The French industrialists (GIE Rafale) had submitted their initial offer in December. The ball is therefore in Joko Widodo's camp and everyone is now waiting for the authorization to engage, which must be given by the Indonesian president.

https://www.latribune.fr/entreprises-fi ... 84904.html
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Unread post22 Jun 2021, 09:27

I don't know if it's because of the nonsense that they post. Or that it evokes some people setting the record straight? Things might also go a bit quiet, because the French site locked the thread "Rafale, face in the forums". The plotting and planning of what to post on F-16.net, has taken a hit.

Was it the binoculars?
Operation Chammal: Embedding with A Combat Crew
(Source: French Defence HQ; issued Feb 21, 2019)
(Unofficial translation by Defense-Aerospace.com)
A French Air Force Rafale B omnirole fighter returns from a mission against the Daesch terrorist group in the Iraq-Syria theater of operations to its forward-deployed base in Jordan. (FR AF photo)
The pilot and the weapon system officer / navigator form an inseparable pair on the Rafale two-seater. On the forward-deployed airbase in the Levant, they take off daily on combat missions.


Two trades, two functions, one plane. On the two-seater Rafale, pilot and navigator-weapons system officer (NOSA) form an inseparable pair: they fly together and make up a "combat crew".

The pilot and his NOSA each have a complementary function. "Flying as a combat crew, on a combat mission, means above all having absolute confidence in each other," explains the pilot. Each mission requires a total investment and particularly demanding training.

Taking off from the air base, an initial phase called domestics begins. The pilot manages the position and the trajectory of the aircraft. He also carries out all the communications work with the formation leader and manages in-flight refueling. During this phase, the navigator assists the pilot by anticipating the mission’s management mission in the medium and long term as well as the preparation of the navigation and attack system. After refueling, the Rafale arrives in the combat zone, where the tactical phase begins.

The navigator communicates by radio with the Joint Terminal Attack Controller (JTAC), the advanced ground observer who assists pilots from the ground. "My role is to create a relationship of trust with the JTAC and respond to his demands," explains the navigator.

During this time, the pilot carefully manages the flight of his aircraft in an airspace occupied by the many other coalition aircraft. " During a close air support (CAS) mission, we are surrounded by many drones and other fighters," says the pilot. “You must be extremely vigilant at all altitudes.”

On the ground, the JTAC belonging to the Syrian democratic forces requests surveillance of a given zone. "He asks me to observe and describe an area of interest," explains the navigator. Thanks to the pair of binoculars, the Damocles pod (infrared imaging designator) and the OCAD (connected decision-making tool), the crew observes the area and see a vehicle driving up from the south. It stops and positions itself. On board, three armed individuals, who are identified as enemy combatants. "Immediately, I describe the situation to the JTAC,” says the navigator, who positions a drone on the target.

A few minutes later, the firing order is given to neutralize these fighters who threaten a position of Syrian Democratic Forces. No more noise in the airplane, as the crew knows its procedures by heart. The navigator prepares his system while the pilot places the aircraft on the required flight path.

"When the JTAC declares a target, communications in the cockpit stop,” says the navigator. “The pilot enters the target coordinates, I check the data. Before firing, I reread the JTAC coordinates for the last time from the Weapon System visualization.”

The pilot drops the bomb and the NOSA guides it to the enemy target. Mission accomplished.


Launched on 19 September 2014, Operation Chammal is France’s participation in Operation Inherent Resolve (OIR), and today mobilizes nearly 1,100 soldiers. At the request of the Iraqi government and in coordination with France's allies present in the region, Operation Chammal is based on two complementary pillars: a "training" pillar for Iraqi national security units, and a "support" pillar to assist the action of local forces engaged on the ground against Daesh, and to strike the military capabilities of the terrorist group.

-ends-
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ricnunes

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Unread post22 Jun 2021, 19:06

Now we finally know why the Rafale does NOT have a Helmet Mounted Display System (HMDS).
Who needs a HMDS when you have Binoculars?? :mrgreen:
Last edited by ricnunes on 23 Jun 2021, 12:39, edited 1 time in total.
“Active stealth” is what the ignorant nay sayers call ECM and pretend like it’s new.
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Unread post23 Jun 2021, 03:53

I just want to know if they are gyro stabilized binoculars... or if they have anti-jitter tech included.
Take an F-16, stir in A-7, dollop of F-117, gob of F-22, dash of F/A-18, sprinkle with AV-8B, stir well + bake. Whaddya get? F-35.
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Unread post23 Jun 2021, 04:23

Are these binocs polarized? Nobody wants to know.
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Unread post23 Jun 2021, 04:59

No reason to go low and slow anymore if you have a good pair of binos handy.
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Unread post23 Jun 2021, 05:06

US crews flying FAC(A) used them for a long time. Pretty handy piece of kit for building and maintaining SA, as well as seeing the world in color.
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Unread post23 Jun 2021, 05:11

IIRC I recall seeing a photo of the backseater in a USMC TA-4F using them in a FAC situation calling 'fall of shot/targets'.
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Unread post23 Jun 2021, 06:57

ricnunes wrote:Now we finally now why the Rafale does NOT have a Helmet Mounted Display System (HMDS).
Who needs a HMDS when you have Binoculars?? :mrgreen:

:shock: Gripping GRIPEN BINox: https://saab-seminar.creo.se/210608/wel ... en_seminar [8-10 secs from start of da moovi] :devil:
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Unread post23 Jun 2021, 09:39

I think binoculars are likely useful even with targeting pods as it's easier to scan around and find thing of interest than using a pod and looking at display but with a lot longer range than using just eyes. I also think that this example shows the advantages of F-35 EO DAS, EOTS and HMD combination. F-35 pilot has totally spherical day/night vision along with ability to zoom in to interesting objects very quickly and maintaining good SA all the time in a single seat jet. It must be difficult to do that in 4th gen jet using a targeting pod and looking head down at a display while flying the aircraft. F-35 pilot has huge advantage with these tools and with sensor fusion there is great deal of automation and future potential is huge. They have already showcased autonomous hostile fire detection/identification/geolocation and ballistic missile detection/identification/tracking. And soon these already unique capabilities will likely get a serious boost with Advanced EOTS and new EO DAS version. That's pretty amazing IMO!
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Unread post23 Jun 2021, 12:46

steve2267 wrote:I just want to know if they are gyro stabilized binoculars... or if they have anti-jitter tech included.


Yes, they have! It's it called "On Your Hands&Fingertips" or OYH&F(TM) technology!

It's some secret, groundbreaking and almost alien technology stuff :mrgreen:
“Active stealth” is what the ignorant nay sayers call ECM and pretend like it’s new.
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Unread post23 Jun 2021, 12:54

hornetfinn wrote:I think binoculars are likely useful even with targeting pods as it's easier to scan around and find thing of interest than using a pod and looking at display but with a lot longer range than using just eyes.


In 4th gen fighter aircraft that are equipped with Helmet Mounted Cueing Systems (HMCS) there's no need to have binoculars since you can use the HMCS to look and cue/aim the EO Targeting Pod towards an area of interest and just watch in a display the image of the area with far more zoom capability, can also use IR spectrum in order to detect contacts much more easily (besides using light spectrum) and above all it's a stabilized image (as opposed to binoculars) which in the end grants a much better 'imagery quality' to the pilot or WSO (or whatever he/she is called).

But obviously you cannot do this in a Rafale because it doesn't have a HMCS in the first place! :roll:
“Active stealth” is what the ignorant nay sayers call ECM and pretend like it’s new.
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