Wednesday, August 28, 2013

F-35: Quote of the day

It comes from the Chief of Staff of the Air Force, Gen. Mark Welsh:
As Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh visited airmen in Hawaii and at Kadena AB, Japan, this week, he emphasized that the service is committed to seeing the F-35 program to fruition, as the fifth generation fighter's success has great implications for the Air Force's role in future conflicts. "The F-35 is flying, it is a real thing, and progress is real," he said. Several countries, including Russia and China, are working on fifth generation fighters, he said, and even if the United States does not go to war with these countries, it will inevitably have to confront the military technology they sell to others. Extending the service lives of fourth generation aircraft, and even supplanting the force structure with generation "4.5" fighters, does not solve the problem. "When a fifth generation fighter meets a fourth generation fighter—[the latter] dies," said Welsh. "We can't just dress up a fourth generation fighter as a fifth generation fighter; we need to get away from that conversation," he said. 
Emphasis mine.  It simply stretches credulity to think that aircraft as capable as the 5th generation fighters will be significantly threatened by the old technology of the 4th gen (or even 4.5 gen) fighter.  As we've mentioned here, air warfare is about to change in a revolutionary manner with the full fielding of the family of 5th generation fighters.  Pretending the old standards of air warfare still rule won't change the new reality their fielding will bring, and Welsh understands that.

Graff

31 comments:

  1. Change is something critics refuse to acknowledge, or even attempt to comprehend. Welsh is correct in his assertion. Reliance on upgraded 4th gen platforms endangers US and allied defense. Evolution is natural and necessary, and it would be foolish to believe this does not apply to air combat.

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  2. When one or two 4th Generation fighers like fhe Sukhoys or Mig31 carrying a lot of missiles detect with their huge and powerfull radars from KM above the massive and round engine back and colosal cockpit back of the F-35. The F-35 will run or die...but how to escape from a figher flying at match 2,5 when you only can flight at match 1,2 for several minutes before you overheat?

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    1. Oh dear Lord... the Superrhinoceront infection is spreading ;)

      Fact is that the F-35's ESM will detect and track the Russian radar LONG before it has a chance to fine the F-35. The wing of F-35s will then setup the engagement to their benefit and smoke the Red Air.

      You have to remember that tactics are important and the F-35s will not blindly meander towards the target. Your scenario assumes that the Red Air will know the F-35s are coming, when they are coming, and what route they will be taking. Nobody has yet to explain how that is going to happen.

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    2. Superrhinoceront, your very lack of even the most basic understanding of topics you love to speak on at great length is astounding. I would say read a book, educate yourself a bit, and come back when done. I doubt that would help the narrative you continue to spew though.

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    3. Let me say this as simply as possible.

      What you've just said is completely wrong.

      Your first statement is that "Sukhoys" [sic] and Mig-31s can detect the F-35 because they carry "powerful radars." This is completely unsubstantiated and incorrect. Having a powerful radar does theoretically increase the range at which an object can be detected, but even considering powerful radars, an F-35 can still only be detected at WVR distances (in other words, by the time it shows up on radar, it's already close enough to actually be seen).

      One important thing to remember is that the F-35 was specifically designed to evade being detected by ground-based radar (one of its major design features is an incorporation of a ground-attack capability). Even relatively low-power ground-based radar systems are much more powerful than the "huge and powerfull [sic]" radars on the "Sukhoys" [sic] and Mig-31s -- and these are the radars the F-35 was specifically designed to evade.

      Secondly, it is important to realize that increasing the power of a radar only increases the distance at which an object can be detected if there is a corresponding improvement in back-end processing. Without an improvement in clutter rejection and general processing, increasing the power emitted by a radar only increases the clutter on the screen. If this wasn't the case, it would be relatively easy to develop a radar that could detect the F-35 -- you'd just have to boost the emitted power to ridiculous levels (okay, so it still wouldn't be *that* easy).

      This is one of the reasons why Russian radars are typically very powerful -- they tend to not have back-end processors as good as Western designed radars, so they compensate with greater emitted power. Contrary to the common fanboy belief, you can't simply determine the detection range of a radar, what size object can be detected at useful ranges, or which radar is better than the other just by measuring which one is more powerful. It's just not that simple.

      Your second statement is that the F-35 has poor all-around VLO, because its engine nozzle is round and it has a cockpit (not quite sure what you meant by 'colosal [sic] cockpit back' -- please clarify). This is also completely false. First of all, the F-35 does not have a legacy-style round nozzle. If you paid any attention to its design, you would realize that the nozzle is serrated. The entire purpose of the serrated nozzle is to make the F-35 VLO from the rear aspect. Contrary to what you are saying, the F-35 is an all-aspect VLO aircraft -- that is to say, it is VLO from every angle. This fact was determined by extensive testing (you didn't just expect that the DoD brass would look at the F-35 model and say "yep, that looks VLO!", did you?). Here's a picture of the F-35 being readied for testing:

      http://www.thehowlandcompany.com/images/10/F-35_RCS_Test01.jpg

      And, to show how the F-35 was tested from all angles (in order to verify that it is actually all aspect VLO), here it is mounted upside down on the test stand:

      http://ww1.prweb.com/prfiles/2010/06/14/2333194/HALOonthepole.jpg

      As you can see, extensive testing is used to actually prove that the F-35 is all-aspect VLO.

      Finally, you state that the F-35, flying at Mach 1.2, would be inferior to an aircraft flying at Mach 2.5. The issue with that idea is that aircraft tend to spend very little time flying at Mach 2.5, even if they are capable of doing so -- flying that fast, with afterburners, uses so much fuel that those kinds of speeds can only be sustained for a short period of time -- you certainly can't fly around for a long time chasing another aircraft at maximum speed. If you did, you'd quickly be forced to find out exactly how capable your aircraft is as a glider...

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    4. Also, as Spudman stated, increasing a radar's emitted power tends to make it a lot easier to detect via ESM -- which is a problem, because the F-35 contains a highly capable ESM system.

      The entire idea behind using LPI radars to reduce the probability of ESM detection is to reduce the power emitted at any particular time. Using very powerful radars has the exact opposite effect: you become an electromagnetic beacon, and other aircraft can see you with their ESM systems long before you can see them with your radar (in general terms, an ESM system can detect an emitter before the emitter can detect the aircraft carrying the ESM system -- unless the aircraft carrying the ESM system has an RCS much larger than the emitter, which, since we're talking about the F-35 vs MiGs and Sukhois, isn't the case).

      Again, aerial combat in the real world isn't quite as simple as you believe it to be. You can't just take a given radar system, notice that the opposition has an aircraft with an RCS too small for your radar to track it at useful ranges, and say "ADD MOAR POWER!!1!" and expect there to be no repercussions, or even for the more powerful radar to have any effect on detection range.

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  3. Mig31 service ceiing 67k feet

    F-35.... 60k

    From above the Mig31 easily will track the huge and rounded surface of the engine at the top. The same for the cokpit back.

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  4. It's not difficult to see. Just watch the cover picture of this blog. BTW Packfas will have the same operational ceiling than the Mig-31.

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  5. The design of the F-35 is optimized to avoid surface radars at frontal and lateral views, not against radars from other airplanes flying above or even at the same level tracking it from the sides or rear. Even it's bottom is not flat any more as it was in the original design, the one it's shown on the cover page of this blog.

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/articlePictures/f35.jpg

    http://realhdwallpaper.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/2013-jet-plane-f-35-hd-wallpaper.jpg
    http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8004/7552624006_3f83928e87_b.jpg

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  6. First of all, the operational ceiling of the F-35 is "60,000+ feet". That's another way of saying "the plane can fly at 60,000 feet or higher, but we don't want to disclose the maximum altitude it can reach."

    Second, do you actually believe aerial combat occurs at those kinds of altitudes? If you look at historical cases of aerial combat from the 1950s to today, you'll find that the vast majority of air-to-air combat takes place at or below 30,000 feet. Aircraft may be able to reach or exceed 60,000 feet, but the idea that they actually fly that high in combat operations is ludicrous.

    Third, you can keep making untrue statements all you want, but the F-35 is an all-aspect VLO aircraft. I understand that you have no experience, and precious little understanding, of combat aircraft, but are you seriously so stupid that you haven't been able to comprehend my explanation of what that term means? Are your reading comprehension skills so abysmal that you haven't been able to understand what I've been saying?

    I'll put it in simple terms: all-aspect VLO means that the aircraft has been tested from all angles -- front, side, back, top, bottom, etc. -- and has been found to have a very low radar cross section from all angles. I cannot stress enough just how much testing is done to prove that this is actually the case. Models of the F-35 were actually tested from all angles to ensure that they were VLO from all angles, not just a few. The military didn't just look at it and say "yeah, this looks VLO!", or assume that Lockheed Martin was telling the truth when they said it was all-aspect VLO. They tested it from all angles, and have stated that the aircraft has been proven to be all-aspect VLO when thus tested. In fact, I posted two pictures of the aircraft undergoing such testing (there are a lot more on the Internet, if you'd like to see them), showing how it was tested from multiple angles. You can make unsupported arguments all you want, the fact is that the F-35 was extensively tested to prove that it is in fact all-aspect VLO.

    Your assertion that an aircraft must have a "flat shape" in order to be VLO is also unsupported by any evidence. Not only does it completely ignore the contribution of RAM to the overall RCS of the aircraft, it's simply flat wrong. Several morons have attempted to state that the F-35 is not all-aspect VLO by doing what you have done, and looking at random photos on the Internet in an attempt to measure the RCS of an aircraft. Somehow, I think actual studies using actual aircraft and actual radar systems are more accurate than looking at pictures on the Internet.

    In short, the only way to determine the RCS of an aircraft, or to determine whether or not it is all-aspect VLO, is to conduct tests on the aircraft. These tests have been conducted on the F-35, and they have proven conclusively that it is all-aspect VLO. Contrary to what you have stated, the presence of "bumps" does not make an aircraft non-VLO.

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  7. It's even bigger and rounder than an F-16 from above.

    http://wpmedia.blogs.ottawacitizen.com/2012/01/supersonic_f-35-thumb-450x360.jpg
    http://people.bu.edu/wwildman/ben/military/images/f16-3.jpg

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    1. Jesus, you're slow. Please re-read the part about how the F-35 was extensively tested from all angles, and how this testing proved that it is indeed VLO from all-angles.

      Also, there's another problem with your "the MiG-31 can fly at 67,000 feet" argument. An aircraft's service ceiling is calculated in a *clean configuraion*. That means no targeting pods, no bombs, no missiles, no drop tanks, etc. Essentially, it means that the aircraft is not fitted out for combat. Once you start adding missiles, bombs, targeting pods, drop tanks, etc., the performance of an aircraft falls significantly due to the extra drag -- and this negatively affects the aircraft's combat ceiling. The F-35 avoids this issue because it is extremely similar aerodynamically in both a clean configuration and a combat configuration, due to its internal weapons carriage. The MiG-31 cannot avoid this issue. So, good luck getting a MiG-31 to 67,000 feet in an actual combat situation!

      Also, you still haven't realized that air combat simply doesn't occur at 60,000+ feet. Like I said, history has shown that the vast majority of air-air combat takes place at around 30,000 feet or lower. The situations you are trying to generate, where two aircraft intercept each other at extremely high altitude, simply don't occur in real life.

      Also, you don't seem to have understood me when I stated that the F-35's service ceiling is "60,000+ feet." I guess you selectively read over that particular piece of information, as it doesn't support your assertion.

      Finally, you seem to have completely forgotten that the F-35 has an extremely capable ESM system. The MiG-31 does not have an LPI radar, and the vary high emitted power makes it very easy to detect via ESM systems. Even if the situation you are describing actually could occur in real life, the F-35 would be able to detect the MiG-31's radar long before the MiG-31's radar detected the F-35.

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  8. The hole fleet of Mig31 will be modernized for the 2020. Even if they fly with out weapons they will share the location of the F-35 at the rest of the fleet. The Pakfas the same, but they will carry inside a lot of missiles at that altitude. But you don't even need an MIG31 or Pakfa to detect the F-35, just an UAV with a radar like the Global Hawk flying at those extreme altitudes to see it from above.

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    1. You still. Haven't. Gotten. It.

      The F-35 is all-aspect VLO. This means that it is VLO from all angles. Your bone of contention is that the top surface of the F-35 is curved. You believe that the fact that it is curved will prevent it from being VLO, because it will reflect radar energy back to the source. This is true in theory, but false in reality -- here's a snippet explaining why:

      "Now, you will notice that many of these modern stealth aircraft have curved surfaces, not facets. You may say, “But we just saw how curved surfaces reflect energy in more directions!!!”. This is true, but it’s all right, for two reasons:

      One; If the curved surface is at an angle to the radar source, it will reflect the beam away. Remember the “wedge”. Sure, a slightly curved wedge might reflect the beam in more directions than a straight-sided wedge, but those directions will all be AWAY from the radar source anyways, so you’re okay. As long as the aircraft is, overall, fairly flat (that is, made up of few slightly curved surfaces (ideally just a top and a bottom) that meet at a sharp edge), it will only strongly reflect radar if it comes from straight above or straight below (and if you’re flying right over a radar station or right under a fighter plane, then you’re in trouble already).

      The second reason why curves are okay is that, on modern stealth planes, their radius is rarely constant. They never look like circles when seen from any angle, and no part of the surface is spherical or cylindrical: they always look like squashed ellipses blended together with hyperbolae and parabolae. What that means is, as the orientation of a curvy stealth airplane changes in relation to you as it flies around, the part of the curvy surface that is perpendicular to you RIGHT NOW will have a different radius of curvature than the part that was perpendicular to you one second ago. As the airplane flies, the part of the surface that is perpendicular to you changes. But since each point in the surface has a different local radius of curvature, the parts that are reflecting energy back at you keep changing their radius of curvature as the airplane moves. Why is this important? Because something with a small radius of curvature (something very curvy) reflects less radar back at you than something with a large radius of curvature (something flat).

      This means that the amount of radar energy being returned by the airplane keeps fluctuating. So even if a radar IS perpendicular to the surface (like a fighter plane right above it or a radar station on the ground right below it), it will be hard to get a radar lock, or even to tell the airplane from the random static around it. Non-constant radii of curvature ensure that the radar reflection changes a lot as the airplane moves (flies), making it hard to lock onto."

      Also, you have completely neglected to recognize that the F-35's ESM will "see" the MiG-31's radar long before the MiG-31's radar will "see" the F-35, even if the F-35's stealth somehow became totally ineffective.

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  9. Nice theory...

    http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-Qc80t-oDNpw/UhzY7zQ9F9I/AAAAAAAA2LA/ZHn91iyJnYk/s1600/163474043-Advanced-Super-Hornet-Media-Brief_page21_image264.jpg

    http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-fUUYh3JR8pw/UhzV2QwDNrI/AAAAAAAA2K0/1GtEQQfCo2E/s1600/ed072cd7-1458-4819-8163-4c5cbbca275b.Full.jpg

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    1. Your response made absolutely no sense. I responded to your claim by proving that a curved shape can be incorporated on a VLO aircraft. You responded by posting two pictures of an aircraft. Please, learn basic reading comprehension skills.

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    2. Also, I do quite enjoy your description of what I've just said as a "theory", as if it is a statement that has not been proven to be true.

      What I posted has been proven to be true -- it's basic physics. Just because you can't understand it doesn't make it any less true. An argument from stupidity is a logical fallacy. You tend to make a great deal of arguments that incorporate logical fallacies; I'd suggest taking a look at this page to ensure that you don't continue to do so.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_fallacies

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  10. It never fails to make me laugh when I see Superrhinoceont make the rebuttal of 'but its round'.

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  11. Round as a barrel at the top

    http://marinesmagazine.dodlive.mil/files/2010/03/marines_F35_1.jpg

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    1. Yet it has no ill effects as far as RCS is concerned. Imagine that.

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  12. Yeah sure, no ill effect, is round top is as discrete as this...

    www.wildlifeontheweb.co.uk/miscmammals/slides/Hippopotamus,%20Naivasha,%20Kenya,%202007%20(4).jpg

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  13. I know facts are things you struggle with wildly, but that in no way alters reality in such a way that these facts do not exist. RCS testing was performed by the USAF. This testing regime proved that the F-35 is an all aspect VLO platform. No matter how you try to spin this, you are powerless to alter the facts that exist.

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  14. Rhino, now you've failed basic logic.

    "The F-35 is round. A hippo is round. Therefore, the F-35 stands out like a hippo."

    Do you even realize how idiotic that is? How stupid that makes you sound? How illogical a comparison it is? Let's try out your "logic" shall we...

    Most skyscrapers are rectangles. The air intake on an F/A-18 is a rectangle. Therefore, an F/A-18 is as immobile as a skyscraper.

    It is well known that the pyramids, produced in Egypt some 3,000+ years ago, cannot fly. The sides of the pyramids are shaped like triangles. The Chinese Chengdu J-10 has wings shaped like triangles. Therefore, the J-10 cannot fly, and all that stupid "evidence" you show me proving that it can fly is false.

    See how ridiculous you're being? You're displaying the debating skills of a toddler.

    The fact that you believe you can argue against the laws of physics by posting a video of an aircraft flying and a picture of a hippo really does speak wonders about why no one here seems to take you seriously. You have lost all contact with reality -- even when presented with facts that have been proven to be true, which are a part of basic physics, you STILL believe them to be false, so that you can cling on to your precious opinions. It's almost as idiotic as if I was to claim that the theory of gravity was false (even though it is basic physics, and has long since been proven to be true), simply because I harbored a strong desire to be able to fly without an aircraft.

    The fact is that the F-35 has been extensively tested, and thus proven to be all-aspect VLO. As I have already stated, simple physics dictate that a round surface is perfectly able to be included on a VLO aircraft without compromising its radar cross section. Your response -- a video of a F/A-18 flying and a picture of a hippo -- is completely idiotic, does nothing to disprove what I've said, and only makes you look like a complete fool. You can squeal and argue all you want, but your opinions are completely false.

    Of course, none of that is going to stop you from responding to this post. You'll simply keep ranting and raving about how you are correct, displaying the maturity, spelling, grammar, and debate skills of a preschooler, and making statements that are completely detached from reality (after all, reality tends to disprove your insane opinions). You will continue to display that you have no understanding whatsoever of aerial combat, aircraft design, or anything else related to the F-35, yet you will also continue to bullheadedly trumpet that you are correct, despite having no experience in the fields you discuss.

    Oh well. At least you serve as decent entertainment...

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  15. You know, I'm pretty sure I can summarize the "debate" (although I can't really call the mental refuse you post a "response") about the F-35 in a few short statements:

    SuperRhino: The F-35 can be detected 'cuz it's ROUND!!!

    Response: The F-35 has been tested and proven to be all-aspect VLO.

    SuperRhino: IT'S ROUND!!!!

    Response: Not only has the F-35 been extensively tested, here's proof that a round shape can be incorporated on a VLO aircraft without compromising its RCS.

    SuperRhino: IT'S ROOUUND!!!

    Response: Now you're just not making sense. I've proven that the F-35 has been extensively tested to show it is all aspect VLO, and I've shown that a round shape doesn't compromise its RCS, and you've just responded by saying that it's round, which, based upon what I've posted, doesn't make any difference at all.

    SuperRhino: ...

    SuperRhino: But IT'S ROOOOOUUUUUUNNNNNDDD!!!!!!! (and here's a random picture of a hippo to prove it! -- and to prove my grasp of reality is quite tenuous)

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  16. Round and Chubby.

    It looks like the pregnant wife of an F-16

    http://www.jeffhead.com/f35/f-35a-04.jpg

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    2. I've already proven that what you've said is entirely incorrect, and that an aircraft with a rounded shape is perfectly capable of being low observable. I've already shown that the F-35 has been tested and proven to be VLO from all angles. Until you demonstrate that you have any grasp on reality, until you demonstrate that you have debate skills any better than a preschooler, until you demonstrate any sign of intelligence whatsoever, and until you demonstrate that you are more mature than a second grade child, then there is nothing more for me to say.

      Until then, all I can conclude is that you know how incorrect you are, you realize that what I have said is indeed correct, you can't think of any response to prove your point (because there is none), and thus, you are stamping your foot on the ground, plugging your ears, screaming "Nyah nyah nyah! I can't hear you!", and just acting like an immature child in general, all in order to cling on to your fanboyish beliefs.

      In that environment, there simply is nothing more for me to say. You cannot argue with someone who decides to shut himself away from reality, as such a person can simply dream up whatever delusional response he wishes to, because to him, even the most insane, immature response is valid and "proves" his point.

      To repeat a cliched statement: "Ignorance can be cured. Stupid is forever."

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  17. http://wpmedia.fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2010/08/f-35.jpg?w=620

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  18. If F-35 is a fifth generation fighter, then Rafale is a sixth generation fighter.

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