Russian Su-57 Aircraft Thread (PAK-FA and IAF FGFA)


TerraN_EmpirE

Tyrant King
Had and has.
F22 is still getting upgrades. Sadly it has suffered due to numbers and program management. On the same level as PAKFA.
Eurofighter is still in production and it's tranche have continued to improve.
 

Gloire_bb

Junior Member
Registered Member
In any case 5th gen has moved away from technological stuff like OVT and super cruise - they are periphery.
Only one particular fighter did, because it just couldn't achieve it.
3 others remain commited.
In fact speed literally kills. An aircraft leading-edge temperature increases with aircraft speed The detection range from IR sensors increase by a factor of 3 between sub sonic speed at 0.8 mach vs speed at 1.8 mach. Having supercruise sounds great but its utility has diminished in the age of IR sensors.
And? It is up to supercruising fighter to decide, if he let you see him or not, not up to you. But he still has this ability to engage/disengage at will.
Also, age of IR sensors on fighters started in 1960s and never ended outside of the US.

P.s.somewhat ironically, f-35 FLIR isn't tuned to see heated surfaces from maximum possible distances, because it works in a different wavelength(being primary an a2g sensor shows yet again). European ones(especially PIRATE, which is the best of them), however, do exactly that(they even see head-on subsonic fighters at very respectable ranges), yet no one has ever claimed what they've killed supersonic engagement. Of course, OLS-57 offers simillar capability.
 
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Brumby

Major
No. It's just what one can get from reading about the Su-35 avionics capabilities and the discussed Su-57 avionics capabilities.
The F-22 does not have the same degree of sensor fusion and initially it did not even have a proper two-way data link capability. It did not have support for off-boresight IR missiles either. It does not have an IRST sensor. Need I go on?
Whilst the F-35 sensor fusion is much publicised, it was build on the architecture of what went into the F-22 sensor fusion. It was an integrated systems architecture with sensor antenna embedded throughout the plane in order that the VLO features are not compromised. In other words, it is not an afterthought that you have with pods. Obviously when the F-22 was put together the state of the avionics at that time was not as advanced as when the F-35 came along.

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The comment about the F-22 lacking IRST is repeated so often that it deserves to be addressed. The F-22 with the most powerful radar (AN/APG-77) at that time combined with the EW suite (AN/ALR-94) was a very potent sensor combination then and today. Those F-15 drivers will testify to that. Every time they go up against an F-22 they get popped without being able to locate their presence. Incorporating IRST at that time was simply an overkill against known and future threats. At that time non-imaging IR systems weren’t really that good and radar systems were very effective. As new imaging IRST technology has emerged it became increasingly popular on fighter aircraft in recent years. Both F-22 and F-35 have all aspect IR suppression and it would be interesting in terms of how effective IRST will be against these two birds.

When discussing IRST it is important to understand that not all IRST systems are the same and that they have similar capabilities. At the most basic level are the non-imaging uncooled IRST systems as used in MiG-29 (OLS-29). They have very poor range due to low sensitivity and can only indicate direction of some heat source. They are unable to tell the range (without laser) and cannot identify targets as they cannot create images but just detect increase in IR radiation in some direction. These systems also cannot effectively detect and track multiple targets.
An improvement up the technology chain are non-imaging cooled IRST systems and are used in Su-27 variants including SU-35 (OLS-27 to OLS-35). These have much better sensitivity and thus longer range. Otherwise they share similar limitations as the older IR systems. Imaging, uncooled IRST systems are not used in fighter IRST systems but in missiles. They easily beat both uncooled and cooled non-imaging systems in almost every respect. They have decent range and as they are imaging, can also recognize and identify targets. They can do passive ranging and can detect/track large number of targets simultaneously. Imaging, cooled IRST systems are used in modern western IRSTs like Pirate, FSO and EOTS. These outperform all other types handily and have all the capabilities of imaging uncooled systems but offer much better sensitivity and thus better range and target discrimination abilities.

Imaging sensors can be further divided to scanning and staring arrays. Scanning arrays have been used in earlier FLIR/IRST systems (Pirate, AN/AAAS-42, many FLIR systems) but staring arrays have really taken over during the last decade. EOTS and DAS use staring arrays as do many later targeting pods and for example DDM-NG in Rafale. Compared to scanning arrays, modern staring arrays have higher sensitivity, longer range and better reliability and higher frame rate with better image quality.

As for the other technology gaps that you mentioned with the F-22, there are planned upgrades for the F-22 to ensure it remain the premier air to air superiority fighter. I have more confidence in the F-22 completing its upgrade before the SU-57 can complete its planned development.

Since you referred to SU-35, let's see where it is in the avionics bus architecture.

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Need I say more?

It does have the AESA radar but other than that it's not that sophisticated. Most of the processing power is used on the AESA radar rather than other higher level computations. The reason why I know the Su-57 will have better avionics software and computational units than the F-22 is because even the Su-35 is better at that.
….so the SU-35 is better than the F-22 in avionics. Please tell me more in what ways..

There are reports even in this forum about the pilot assists on the Su-35. Supposedly the Su-57 does that even better (the Russians call it an 'AI'). The pilot assists include both threat classification and weapons selection.
…. are you suggesting such features are lacking in the F-22/F-35? It is said that the strength of the F-35 is not in its stealth but in its sensor fusion. The autonomous feature of its sensor fusion engine is what makes it so powerfully different in terms of sensor directed operation and threat identification. Non of the sensor fusion features in Rafael and Typhoon come close in its autonomous capability. It is why the millions of line of codes are for.

AFAIK that is something that only the F-35 is supposed to have. With regards to the Eurofighter and the Rafale, the Eurofighter has really ancient onboard computers which thus far the founder nations refuse to upgrade. So it's not even at the F-22 level. Your smartwatch probably has more computer power.
Not according to the data bus technological tree above.

Compare the compute power of a leading edge processor of the F-22 era like the DEC Alpha 21264 CPU with the CPU you would have in a smartphone like, say, the Kirin 980 in a Huawei smartphone. The Kirin 980 has 6.9 billion transistors while the Alpha 21264 has 15.2 million transistors. That's over 450x more transistors. It even has more compute power than the original F-35 hardware architecture which was based on the PowerPC architecture.
We are talking of a plane not a phone. In logic it is called a straw man argument.
 

Gloire_bb

Junior Member
Registered Member
You mean using the Jedi mind trick?
Going supersonic in the first place.
Supercruise is capability, not an obligation.
Lack of it, on the other hand, is a clear hinderance.

Incorporating IRST at that time was simply an overkill against known and future threats.
More like unwillingness to pay for it.
PIRATE, which is a benchmark system essentially, became operational in 2007, so tech level was clearly there.
 
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TerraN_EmpirE

Tyrant King
More like unwillingness to pay for it.
PIRATE, which is a benchmark system essentially, became operational in 2007, so tech level was clearly there
Partially
What would it have been needed for? The year was 1997, that was when Raptor was finalized for production.
Russia barely had Flankers and Fulcroms the Russian airforce was a farce. The closest to a Russian stealth plane was the MiG-37 Ferret made by Testors. Hell even now they have a dozen SU57 in no shape for combat.
The PLAAF was worse off.
Even Europe was laxidasy with the Typhoon.
ATF looked like a relic of the cold war. A uber weapon with no need.
The F22 had an IRST which was in the designs a cooled non imaging type was dropped to save weight and cost. The PIRATE came on in line just as Raptor was leaving production.
Even today there are no real stealth aircraft outside the US in operational numbers of state so yeah they took there time.
 

Gloire_bb

Junior Member
Registered Member
Even today there are no real stealth aircraft outside the US in operational numbers of state so yeah they took there time.
So, just like with side arrays and many more, USAF, fighting teeth and nails for every additional raptor, just wasn't able to afford these pieces(and, afaik, all weight&space reservations are long gone, i.e. no "wasted" capability here).

This doesn't make dropped devices any worse.
In the end, after several decades of denying their worth, air to air IRSTs are returning to the USAF(legion pods). Others simply adopted it earlier.
 

TerraN_EmpirE

Tyrant King
So, just like with side arrays and many more, USAF, fighting teeth and nails for every additional raptor, just wasn't able to afford these pieces(and, afaik, all weight&space reservations are long gone, i.e. no "wasted" capability here).

This doesn't make dropped devices any worse
Yet it can be added back in. And likely will before Su57 has the number to be declared operational.
The IRST space is there as was that for the side arrays just a matter of getting them up and working.
The Legion Pod is a refit added to 4th gens more to deal with drones and exercises against raptor and lightning than Su57.
 

Gloire_bb

Junior Member
Registered Member
Yet it can be added back in.
According to conventional wisdom and experience with other planes, "reserved" spaces are eaten by other equipment almost instantly.
I am almost sure what raptors will never get them.

The Legion Pod is a refit added to 4th gens more to deal with drones and exercises
Hundreds of expensive pods. Dozens of F-15Xs and new superbugs, too.
Everything is unwanted, just to have a look, is totally unnecessary, and anyways we can bolt it stealthily into 5th gen platforms anytime.

But jokes aside, it's clearly seen as a useful capability. Furthermore, legion pod is very clearly being advertized as an "equalizer" solution. And i am honestly pretty interested why USAF(and not just the USN) has chosen to pursue one.
US feels what allied numerical edge in 5th gen platforms is going to go away?
 
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