The next jet: F-X & F/A-XX

Military aircraft - Post cold war aircraft, including for example B-2, Gripen, F-18E/F Super Hornet, Rafale, and Typhoon.
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wrightwing

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Unread post19 May 2019, 17:45

Stealth, sensor fusion, HOBS, etc.... are all proven concepts. They've been thoroughly tested time after time, against aircraft/SAMs that are combat tested. In every single instance they've enjoyed overwhelming superiority. That's why every major air force in the world is buying/developing these capabilities. The same hand wringing occurred prior to the first time F-14/15/16/18, AH-64, M-1 Abrams, M-2 Bradley, MV-22 Osprey, etc.... were used in combat. We haven't forgotten prior lessons. Every new capability is built upon prior lessons and emerging threats.
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sferrin

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Unread post19 May 2019, 18:02

zero-one wrote:
sferrin wrote:
We already know it works. That's what we have exercises for. What would be the point of waiting anyway? If the F-22/35 fails does that mean you won't build PCA? If they succeed does that mean you won't build PCA? In either case, does that mean it won't be stealthy? That would be, "no, no, and no". So waiting is a pointless delay.


Exactly, thats all we have to show for it, Exercises, Pre Vietnam Simulations also showed that the Aim-7 Sparrow was supposed to have an 80% success rate. I think actual combat was closer to 11%


Are you saying you don't understand the difference between 50s era simulation and modern exercises? Seriously?
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disconnectedradical

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Unread post19 May 2019, 18:18

zero-one wrote:Keep responses in line with the discussion. Don't attack the messenger if you can't attack the message.


Your message is ridiculous. There are limits to F-22 airframe. Waiting until the next war will give time for Russia and China to catch up or develop their 6th generation aircraft first. Do you want US to be the one reacting instead of leading?

zero-one wrote:We had no problems when some comments here suggested that the F-35, specifically the C variant would be a good candidate as a basis for the 6th gen fighter. But how come when its the F-22 its suddenly "too obsolete". ScorpionAlpha said it perfectly. Some people are too much of F-35 fans that they purposefully downplay the strengths of the F-22 and over emphasize the F-35's capabilities to quote on quote, bend every situation to make the F-35 the right answer.


WTF does F-35 have to do with PCA other than some people here suggesting it? They're not designing PCA or making requirements, are they?

zero-one wrote:PCA has that too
https://www.flightglobal.com/news/artic ... oo-431023/

Even they don't really know what they need yet. So why are they rushing to build it? Wait for combat and get a better idea of what you really need. Thats all I'm trying to say here


They didn't know what they ATF was when they started the program in early 1980s either. That's the point, slow and unmaneuverable is just one of several PCA concepts, just like with ATF. Why are you freaking out over PCA then? The whole wait for combat argument is giving Russia and China benefit of time. :bang:

Can you put your F-22 centered view aside and realize that airframe is not end all be all?
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sferrin

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Unread post19 May 2019, 19:00

disconnectedradical wrote:
zero-one wrote:Keep responses in line with the discussion. Don't attack the messenger if you can't attack the message.


Your message is ridiculous. There are limits to F-22 airframe. Waiting until the next war will give time for Russia and China to catch up or develop their 6th generation aircraft first. Do you want US to be the one reacting instead of leading?

zero-one wrote:We had no problems when some comments here suggested that the F-35, specifically the C variant would be a good candidate as a basis for the 6th gen fighter. But how come when its the F-22 its suddenly "too obsolete". ScorpionAlpha said it perfectly. Some people are too much of F-35 fans that they purposefully downplay the strengths of the F-22 and over emphasize the F-35's capabilities to quote on quote, bend every situation to make the F-35 the right answer.


WTF does F-35 have to do with PCA other than some people here suggesting it? They're not designing PCA or making requirements, are they?

zero-one wrote:PCA has that too
https://www.flightglobal.com/news/artic ... oo-431023/

Even they don't really know what they need yet. So why are they rushing to build it? Wait for combat and get a better idea of what you really need. Thats all I'm trying to say here


They didn't know what they ATF was when they started the program in early 1980s either. That's the point, slow and unmaneuverable is just one of several PCA concepts, just like with ATF. Why are you freaking out over PCA then? The whole wait for combat argument is giving Russia and China benefit of time. :bang:

Can you put your F-22 centered view aside and realize that airframe is not end all be all?


Considering the multitude of concepts kicked around pre-ATF and early ATF, and how they compared to the eventual ATFs, I'd said it's a bit early for people to be having histrionics over PCA.

Imagine the squealing from certain members if they'd been told this was going to replace the F-15:

Lockheed Model 090P.jpg


or this:

0235c02e620958fd7800bc11b99eb287.png


or this:

Boe1878parasolwing-s.jpg




Personally, I'd be ecstatic if one (or both) of these ended up in service:

LM.jpg


Boeing.jpg
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wrightwing

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Unread post19 May 2019, 19:25

The AIM-7M (which is far inferior to any of the C/D AMRAAM variants), had a far better than 11% Pk. During the Gulf War 44 missiles were fired, 30 of which hit their targets (and 19 of which were BVR.) The Pk of missiles fired from F-22/35/PCA will be much higher, than for 4th generation jets, all else being equal. They can get into better firing positions, achieving surprise, that conventional jets just can't achieve. While we don't know the ultimate layout of the PCA, it's safe to assume that it won't have inferior kinematics to the F-35, being the high end mix. That combined with greater range, lower signature, improved EW/laser/MSDM defenses, and large offensive magazine, should make it the most potent A2A fighter yet developed.
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marsavian

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Unread post19 May 2019, 19:29

zero-one wrote:
marsavian wrote:None of which contained stealth fighters. The only time stealth aircraft (bombers) were used they were never intercepted by enemy aircraft. You obviously don't feel stealth is a winning fighter strategy by itself without backup from traditional capabilities.


Yes I do, because there have been times that when you take away a tried and tested capability and rely solely on capabilities that in theory should give you an advantage, painful lessons happen. Stealth is no longer monopolized and stealth on stealth means detection and engagement ranges will be reduced. I'm not saying we'll go back to dogfights.

All I'm saying is, wait for the F-22 and F-35 to prove them selves in combat first. Once you have a decent sample size of actual combat and see if Stealth really negates the need for Kinematics completely then build the PCA air to air bomber.
Because what if it doesn't. What if against the J-20 the F-22 ends up in a phone booth 3 out of 10 times.

While we wait, the money for PCA can be used to improve the F-22's range, speed up the development of Stealth tankers etc. and hopefully build more Raptors. But thats just my opinion.


Improving the F-22's range only gets you a faster supercruising F-35 which tactically doesn't mean very much in the real world if their ranges are broadly comparable. Your shortsighted strategy is basically like the French during the World Wars building the Maginot Gun Line while the Germans perfected Blitzkrieg. Basically entrenchment and reinforcement of what you already have.

So J-20 is your target to beat with an improved F-22 at the limits of its endurance even with tanker support. PCA as a bigger aircraft will have a more powerful radar than F-22/J-20, it will have bigger more powerful IR sensors, it will have a lower RF/IR signature due to its more modern design. It will detect the J-20 before it detects it and maintain first strike stealth advantage. It will also do this at ranges the F-22 can't be at.

Waiting for F-22/F-35 to prove themselves in combat is an open ended proposition, when does this wait end ? How long has it been already since the F-22 hasn't been in combat as stealth aircraft have a deterrent value of their own ? Waiting for something to turn up is a recipe for stagnation.

As for the air to air bomber quip well in the fighter bomber role on long incursions into enemy territory that is primarily what will be needed at a much cheaper price than B-21. Something that will replace the F-15E for everyone but which still retains the ability to defend itself well. Anyway Lockheed, Boeing, Northrop will all bid for the PCA and they can all put their own spin on the requirements and develop their own individual solutions that may go beyond the official requirement. Just as YF-23 perhaps more purely satisfied the ATF requirement it was the more agile YF-22 that won the contract.

All the graphics I have seen for the PCA concept show a Blackbird type delta aircraft not a flying wing like B-2 which indicate to me that maneuverability will be part of the final solution. The way I see this coming out eventually is like a much bigger version of the European NGF with two advent 50klb engines. It will have at least 7g capability and the thrust and wing to sustain that in emergencies but primarily it will be a long range stalker and be the zenith of stealth aircraft before the true hypersonic 6th gens arrive.
Last edited by marsavian on 19 May 2019, 19:37, edited 1 time in total.
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wrightwing

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Unread post19 May 2019, 19:35

Su-57/J-20/J-31 will always be the lesser threats. SAMs are the greatest threats to aircraft. First look/shoot/kill > everything else involved in the design.
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jetblast16

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Unread post19 May 2019, 20:45

Personally, I like the below for the F-X:
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popcorn

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Unread post20 May 2019, 01:21

I like the idea of a larger platform optimized for range and payload with the latest LO and SA.tech capable of self-escort. To defend itself, give it the latest EW gear and self defense measures,.prioritizing the defensive laser described in the linked article.that will.swat away incoming SAMs and AAMs. Any enemy fighte trying to get within cannon range will get a similarly hot reception. Also, note that 150kW is only the starting point, the power could be scaled up as the tech advances.

https://www.aerospacetestinginternation ... stem.htmlb
Last edited by popcorn on 20 May 2019, 03:49, edited 1 time in total.
"When a fifth-generation fighter meets a fourth-generation fighter—the [latter] dies,”
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sferrin

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Unread post20 May 2019, 02:42

With a pair of 60k ADVENTs

ngf (20).jpg
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Unread post20 May 2019, 13:24

sferrin wrote:With a pair of 60k ADVENTs

ngf (20).jpg


Something like this is most likely, IMO.

The wing area is going to be massive, as will the engines. We should NOT under any circumstances wait, as that gives Russia/China time to catch up. When PCA emerges it'll make the Flanker/SU-57 look like they have short legs, and its stealth will be the best/most comprehensive to date.

There was mention before of a stealth tanker being far along in development. I hope this isn't the MQ-25, because that's not going to carry nearly enough gas to feed this beast. Something the size of an airliner more likely. The price will probably be astronomical though, so a small(er) production run is more likely. Wouldn't be surprised if they had a silver bullet force now to support the F-22's.

IMO, there's no way the PCA is a scaled up F-35C. No way. It's way too small, too slow and doesn't carry enough weapons. Even doubling all those metrics won't be enough, as this has to be a clean sheet design. What is just as interesting to me is training our men to fly it. If the F-35 required a paradigm shift in thinking/tactics, how much moreso will PCA/F/A-XX??

And for God's sake, keep the air superiority (or air dominance, whatever you want to call it) requirement at the forefront. It's a lot easier to turn an air to air monster into a multi-role platform than vice versa. Or worse, try and turn a lightweight fighter into a heavyweight fighter/bomber. The Super Hornet being the classic example.

Design it to kill everything that flies, then kill everything that threatens it on the ground. Air Dominance, SEAD, ISR in that order. We need to do this one right, and buy enough of them to make a difference...
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Unread post20 May 2019, 19:32

No clue about who's wet dream this is but : Bomb their airframes while they are still on the ground, and you won't have to bother a second longer.

All you need are some B1, B2, B-21, and good Intell to do so.

Blow them into spare parts before they can take off and you won't need these super expensive taxpayers wet dreams.

Does China worry you? (Don't know why because their plane is a joke.)
Send some subs and go say ; "Hello, how are you guys doing today", with Tomahawks.
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Unread post20 May 2019, 22:36

zero-one wrote:Exactly, thats all we have to show for it, Exercises, Pre Vietnam Simulations also showed that the Aim-7 Sparrow was supposed to have an 80% success rate. I think actual combat was closer to 11%



Source? Sparrow was an anti-bomber weapon pre-Vietnam.
It's why you had follow-on development during Vietnam for things like "dogfight Sparrow."


With the increase of air defense systems using electronic and infrared sensors and high-speed weapons, traditional designs relying on small size, high speed, and maneuverability may be less relevant and easier to intercept. As a result, the CSBA suggests building a fighter significantly larger relying on enhanced sensors, signature control, networked situational awareness, and very-long-range weapons to complete engagements before being detected or tracked. Larger planes would have greater range that would enable them to be stationed further from a combat zone, have greater radar and IR detection capabilities, and carry bigger and longer-range missiles (Long-Range Engagement Weapon).


If defensive DEWs and miniature self-defense munitions are a reality then air-combat starts
to look like a battle of magazine depth.

Even they don't really know what they need yet. So why are they rushing to build it? Wait for combat and get a better idea of what you really need. Thats all I'm trying to say here


They need range and magazine depth. Stealthy tankers are still going to need large hardened aircraft shelters
which don't yet exist.
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sferrin

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Unread post21 May 2019, 00:35

vilters wrote:No clue about who's wet dream this is but : Bomb their airframes while they are still on the ground, and you won't have to bother a second longer.

All you need are some B1, B2, B-21, and good Intell to do so.

Blow them into spare parts before they can take off and you won't need these super expensive taxpayers wet dreams.

Does China worry you? (Don't know why because their plane is a joke.)
Send some subs and go say ; "Hello, how are you guys doing today", with Tomahawks.


LOL, okay sweetie. :roll:
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zero-one

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Unread post21 May 2019, 07:54

marsavian wrote: PCA as a bigger aircraft will have a more powerful radar than F-22/J-20, it will have bigger more powerful IR sensors, it will have a lower RF/IR signature due to its more modern design. It will detect the J-20 before it detects it and maintain first strike stealth advantage. It will also do this at ranges the F-22 can't be at.


How do you know that, the USAF doesn't even know what PCA will be yet.
A lot of people here already have a pre-conceived version of PCA and F/A-XX which is basically whatever they imagine it to be.

Top brass says it could be a mother ship carrying drones
https://www.popularmechanics.com/milita ... hter-jets/

or a button that makes everything crash
https://www.flightglobal.com/news/artic ... nt-402243/

or a family of systems and not another aircraft at all.
https://www.defensenews.com/digital-sho ... r-designs/

When you look at — through the lens of the network — and you look at air superiority as a mission, as a family-of-systems approach, you can see why you don’t hear me talking a lot about a replacement, A for B,” Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Dave Goldfein told Defense News in March.

“Because the replacement may not be a single platform, it maybe two or three different kinds of capabilities and systems. And so as we look at air superiority in the future, ensuring that we’re advancing to stay ahead of the adversary, we’re looking at all those options.”
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