Page 21 of 27

Re: Penetrating Counter Air / Next Generation Air Dominance

Unread postPosted: 05 Feb 2020, 22:39
by boogieman
wrightwing wrote:
zero-one wrote:I already said that if it were up to me, I want a clean sheet design too, but its not up to me, its up to an organization that wants to have PCA ready by 2030. If we're going with that, the F-22 will have to do. I just don't see any clean sheets done in that time frame.


The USAF doesn't have a 2030 timeline for the PCA to enter service.


Again, I am for a clean sheet design, but with the demands of the USAF, I can't see it happening. An F-22 with all the advancements in engine, RAM coatings and avionics, complemented by other aircraft from the PCA family will hold its own against anything the Chinese or Russians throw at it


F-22s can handle Su-57s and J-20s. What they can't handle is a >1000nm combat radius. There are no USAF demands for a 2030 IOC, so let's stop repeating an air force O-6, that doesn't make those kinds of decisions.


Exactly. The Raptor doesn't have the legs needed for PCA.

Re: Penetrating Counter Air / Next Generation Air Dominance

Unread postPosted: 06 Feb 2020, 07:24
by disconnectedradical
zero-one wrote:But you're basing it off your eyeball and historical trends. what if we never had the 22 and instead went with the a Super F-15. Something with PW-F100-232 motors, TVC and APG-63(v3), would it still be kinematically inferior by this margin?


If you're gonna just list what might go on a Super F-15, then you also have to consider Typhoon upgrades that are offered but not funded. EJ200 engine also has thrust growth of 20% and TVC, but it's unfunded. There's also Captor-E AESA radar which might finally happen after all these years. Even as is, Typhoon can supercruise Mach 1.4 with just A2A load, something I doubt even a F-15 with F110-GE-132 can do, Typhoon supersonic aerodynamics is really a league of its own other than F-22.

zero-one wrote:The way I understand trim drag is that its the drag caused by control surface deflection. Now the YF-23 with it's massive tail relies on that for almost everything, people have made the argument that because its very large, it doesn't need to move much.

However, I would think that the amount of Trim drag would still be the same, you'll need to produce the same amount of trim to achieve the same results (correct me if I'm wrong)


No, different aircraft will have different trim drag depending on the aerodynamics and CG. Trim drag exist because you always need to your tail to create pitch to balance the aircraft when flying since aerodynamic center is not at the CG. For normal stable aircraft CG is in front of aerodynamic center so you have what's called positive static margin. When you go supersonic the center of pressure usually moves back so your static margin increases, that means you need more pitching moment from the tail so that's why trim drag can be pretty big for stable aircraft.

For unstable aircraft like F-16, F-22, F-23, CG is behind aerodynamic center (negative static margin) so when the center of pressure moves back when you go supersonic the absolute value of static margin won't increase as much as with stable aircraft. For some aircraft like F-16 the aircraft actually becomes stable supersonic because of change in center of pressure to the back, but it still less trim drag than it would have if it was stable. Also F-14 glove vanes are specifically meant to reduce trim drag when supersonic because when they pop out they're another aerodynamic surface toward front of aircraft so it moves aerodynamic center forward a bit so you don't need as much moment from the tail, so less trim drag.

So trim drag really depends on how you design your static margin, where your tail is located, and tail size, etc. because the further back your tail is from your CG the less you need to deflect it since you have longer moment arm, etc. Obviously F-22 and F-23 tail designs are very different with different CG and tail volume and so on. So you can't just say Aircraft A has less trim drag than Aircraft B just because A has TVC. You can only say that with certainty if everything else about them are the same. But unstable aircraft like F-16, F-22, YF-23 suffers a lot less from trim drag than stable aircraft like F-14, F-15 in the first place, and when supersonic the biggest part of drag is usually wave drag.

zero-one wrote:Well we don't know that for sure, from what has been made public, the YF-23 has marginal advantages in super-cruise speed while the YF-22 was tested to a higher absolute speed, Does the YF-23 have a placard limit at Mach 2+, I don't know.
Is it tactically usable, I think yes, the F-15's procedure to intercept Mig-31s is to punch out everything and leave just 4 Sparrows and accelerate to their absolute top speeds


Again, based on what Metz said in the book on page 63, "The YF-23 was not flown to its maximum speed during test program as the flight envelope was opened only enough to do supercruise testing. It was capable of much higher speeds."

Reading what Metz said in the book, it didn't seem marginal, and he said in page 59 "...the GE powered YF-23 achieved a higher top supercruise speed which remains classified but was shown publicly as "Very Fast". It was indeed." And this was published in 2016. YF-23 with YF120 might very well flew as fast as Mach 1.7, and F-23A would refine the aerodynamics by smoothing the big square nacelles on the prototypes since thrust reversers weren't needed anymore.

Re: Penetrating Counter Air / Next Generation Air Dominance

Unread postPosted: 06 Feb 2020, 10:45
by zero-one
boogieman wrote:F-22s can handle Su-57s and J-20s. What they can't handle is a >1000nm combat radius. There are no USAF demands for a 2030 IOC, so let's stop repeating an air force O-6, that doesn't make those kinds of decisions.

Exactly. The Raptor doesn't have the legs needed for PCA.


Well it doesn't need to.
Whatever they end up with PCA, if they will indeed go with a family of different airplanes, I don't think each one will have the requirement to go >1000 nm,

https://www.flightglobal.com/usaf-backs ... 34.article
Instead, the air force will proceed with many parallel technology development efforts, like new propulsion systems, airframes, directed energy weapons and hypersonic missiles, to develop a “family of systems” – including longer-range, higher-payload platforms to launch volleys of weapons at targets from “standoff” distances and others that will swoop in for direct attacks.


If....again "If", this is what they will go with, notice how he described at least 2 different types of aircraft.
1 platform with longer range and high payload that will rely on standoff ranges and others that will swoop in for direct attacks.

The latter looks like a conventional air superiority fighter, the F-22X is simply a cheap and easy...or rather easier to build alternative than a clean sheet variant. It doesn't need to fulfill all the roles of PCA, just the traditional air superiority role, which is basically engaging targets within a ~100 Km bubble around the aircraft.

Re: Penetrating Counter Air / Next Generation Air Dominance

Unread postPosted: 07 Feb 2020, 01:40
by boogieman
zero-one wrote:Well it doesn't need to.
Whatever they end up with PCA, if they will indeed go with a family of different airplanes, I don't think each one will have the requirement to go >1000 nm,


I'm not convinced. Both peer adversaries (China & Russia) have developed a robust and evolving ability to disrupt, target and possibly even kill our AAR assets. This puts a premium on the range of our fighter aircraft. When the rubber hits the road I expect PCA to deliver something that can take some of the load away from our aerial refuelers. A Raptor derivative simply won't do that.

Re: Penetrating Counter Air / Next Generation Air Dominance

Unread postPosted: 07 Feb 2020, 07:55
by wrightwing
zero-one wrote:
boogieman wrote:F-22s can handle Su-57s and J-20s. What they can't handle is a >1000nm combat radius. There are no USAF demands for a 2030 IOC, so let's stop repeating an air force O-6, that doesn't make those kinds of decisions.

Exactly. The Raptor doesn't have the legs needed for PCA.


Well it doesn't need to.
Whatever they end up with PCA, if they will indeed go with a family of different airplanes, I don't think each one will have the requirement to go >1000 nm,

https://www.flightglobal.com/usaf-backs ... 34.article
Instead, the air force will proceed with many parallel technology development efforts, like new propulsion systems, airframes, directed energy weapons and hypersonic missiles, to develop a “family of systems” – including longer-range, higher-payload platforms to launch volleys of weapons at targets from “standoff” distances and others that will swoop in for direct attacks.


If....again "If", this is what they will go with, notice how he described at least 2 different types of aircraft.
1 platform with longer range and high payload that will rely on standoff ranges and others that will swoop in for direct attacks.

The latter looks like a conventional air superiority fighter, the F-22X is simply a cheap and easy...or rather easier to build alternative than a clean sheet variant. It doesn't need to fulfill all the roles of PCA, just the traditional air superiority role, which is basically engaging targets within a ~100 Km bubble around the aircraft.

No new aircraft with short legs, will be part of PCA. The acronym PCA pretty much answers that question. Whatever PCA entails, will have longer legs than F-22s or F-35s ADVENT or otherwise. Range and stealth will be priorities, and likely improved supercruise endurance.

Re: Penetrating Counter Air / Next Generation Air Dominance

Unread postPosted: 07 Feb 2020, 08:19
by disconnectedradical
zero-one wrote:
boogieman wrote:F-22s can handle Su-57s and J-20s. What they can't handle is a >1000nm combat radius. There are no USAF demands for a 2030 IOC, so let's stop repeating an air force O-6, that doesn't make those kinds of decisions.

Exactly. The Raptor doesn't have the legs needed for PCA.


Well it doesn't need to.
Whatever they end up with PCA, if they will indeed go with a family of different airplanes, I don't think each one will have the requirement to go >1000 nm,


What role is F-22 supposed to play if it doesn’t have the range to “penetrate”? All articles about PCA talking about family of systems always say that in context of sensor, electronic warfare, network with drones, etc. But range is always integral to the platform, which F-22 doesn’t have enough.

zero-one wrote: If....again "If", this is what they will go with, notice how he described at least 2 different types of aircraft.
1 platform with longer range and high payload that will rely on standoff ranges and others that will swoop in for direct attacks.

The latter looks like a conventional air superiority fighter, the F-22X is simply a cheap and easy...or rather easier to build alternative than a clean sheet variant. It doesn't need to fulfill all the roles of PCA, just the traditional air superiority role, which is basically engaging targets within a ~100 Km bubble around the aircraft.


This F-22X would have role so limited and need so many support assets that calling it “cheap and easy” seems inaccurate. What’s cheaper, a super F-22 that needs a new stealth tanker, or a new clean sheet fighter that doesn’t need that?

Re: Penetrating Counter Air / Next Generation Air Dominance

Unread postPosted: 08 Feb 2020, 07:06
by marauder2048
disconnectedradical wrote:What’s cheaper, a super F-22 that needs a new stealth tanker, or a new clean sheet fighter that doesn’t need that?


Would rather depend on how achievable/affordable stealth tankers would be in the PCA timeframe.
I tend to think you'd be willing to tradeoff a clean-sheet fighter for derivatives since an affordable
in quantity stealth tanker would be such an enormous joint force enabler.

Re: Penetrating Counter Air / Next Generation Air Dominance

Unread postPosted: 09 Feb 2020, 09:20
by zero-one
disconnectedradical wrote:This F-22X would have role so limited and need so many support assets that calling it “cheap and easy” seems inaccurate. What’s cheaper, a super F-22 that needs a new stealth tanker, or a new clean sheet fighter that doesn’t need that?


we don't know,
we don't know what the requirement for PCA is
we don't know how much a clean sheet design will be.

Heres what we do know,
We know that regardless of what they pick, there is already a Stealth tanker in the works in the KC-Z program
We know that the Raptor modernization and restart study concluded that it would cost $40B.
We know the Raptor's Stealth is extremely effective in the higher frequency ranges
We know that Lockheed's new CNT bassed RAM is effective in the lower L band ranges even up to VHF

So how much will an F-22X that has the benefit of ADVENT, CNT bassed Ram, advanced avionics, cost. and will it meet the requirement for time and schedule.

Re: Penetrating Counter Air / Next Generation Air Dominance

Unread postPosted: 09 Feb 2020, 20:23
by wrightwing
zero-one wrote:
disconnectedradical wrote:This F-22X would have role so limited and need so many support assets that calling it “cheap and easy” seems inaccurate. What’s cheaper, a super F-22 that needs a new stealth tanker, or a new clean sheet fighter that doesn’t need that?


we don't know,
we don't know what the requirement for PCA is
we don't know how much a clean sheet design will be.

Heres what we do know,
We know that regardless of what they pick, there is already a Stealth tanker in the works in the KC-Z program
We know that the Raptor modernization and restart study concluded that it would cost $40B.
We know the Raptor's Stealth is extremely effective in the higher frequency ranges
We know that Lockheed's new CNT bassed RAM is effective in the lower L band ranges even up to VHF

So how much will an F-22X that has the benefit of ADVENT, CNT bassed Ram, advanced avionics, cost. and will it meet the requirement for time and schedule.

We do know that no variant of the F-22 will have long enough legs, to meet the (P)CA, given that the Pacific theater and long range SAMs/AAMs are what will drive the requirements. The goal is range/persistence, while minimizing enabler requirements. The (P) also entails improvements in signature reduction in all spectrums, as threat sensors will be continually improving (especially 2040 and later.)

Re: Penetrating Counter Air / Next Generation Air Dominance

Unread postPosted: 10 Feb 2020, 03:38
by madrat
The Space Force will be critical to PCA. Think of 300+ LEO satellites with equivalent of EODAS on a global scale to early detect and track bogies, and possibly even have a satellite based system to identify and sort threats for passive targeting.

Re: Penetrating Counter Air / Next Generation Air Dominance

Unread postPosted: 10 Feb 2020, 08:01
by disconnectedradical
marauder2048 wrote:Would rather depend on how achievable/affordable stealth tankers would be in the PCA timeframe.
I tend to think you'd be willing to tradeoff a clean-sheet fighter for derivatives since an affordable
in quantity stealth tanker would be such an enormous joint force enabler.


Sure, it's a force multiplier for existing F-22s and F-35s, I don't see the combination being a substitute for clean sheet fighter, even with stealth tanker the idea should not be to increase dependency on them, especially if we end up needing more of them to cover range problems of some super F-22.

zero-one wrote:we don't know,
we don't know what the requirement for PCA is
we don't know how much a clean sheet design will be.

Heres what we do know,
We know that regardless of what they pick, there is already a Stealth tanker in the works in the KC-Z program
We know that the Raptor modernization and restart study concluded that it would cost $40B.
We know the Raptor's Stealth is extremely effective in the higher frequency ranges
We know that Lockheed's new CNT bassed RAM is effective in the lower L band ranges even up to VHF

So how much will an F-22X that has the benefit of ADVENT, CNT bassed Ram, advanced avionics, cost. and will it meet the requirement for time and schedule.


It takes $50 billion just to restart F-22A. In fighter pilot podcast for F-22, Col. Terry Scott even said that it will cost about as much to start new as it is to restart F-22.
https://www.fighterpilotpodcast.com/epi ... 22-raptor/

When it comes to using and upgrading existing airframe, there are many things to consider. For example suppliers for parts, avionics that don't exist, or sometimes the vendor/suppliers don't exist anymore, and having to redesign or modify the airframe to accept substitutes. Then you need to do new calculations on power, cooling, to see if the airframe can accept whatever substitute is out there. Then you also have the fact that F-22 will be using older generation of air vehicle tech, like hydraulics instead of EHAs. All these costs add up, and in some cases starting new with an airframe designed from the start to take advantage of what is available is not much more expensive. Speaking as someone who has been involved in aircraft modernization and maintenance, retrofits and upgrades to existing platforms aren't always the cheapest or best value.

I don't see Super F-22 as likely for PCA, based on statements USAF puts out. Sure, they're looking for family of systems, but all indications are stealth and range are inherent to PCA. Air vehicle design has advanced past F-22 airframe, and we can do better for not much more than F-22 restart. It helps if the goal isn't to try to overtake the F-22 as much as the F-22 did with F-15 (trying to develop what's possible in 2000s starting in 1980s) and use more technology that's available or quickly becoming available.

Re: Penetrating Counter Air / Next Generation Air Dominance

Unread postPosted: 10 Feb 2020, 09:30
by zero-one
disconnectedradical wrote:It takes $50 billion just to restart F-22A. In fighter pilot podcast for F-22, Col. Terry Scott even said that it will cost about as much to start new as it is to restart F-22.
https://www.fighterpilotpodcast.com/epi ... 22-raptor/


He was probably basing that on the $66B that was the total program cost for the ATF program. I wonder if he adjusted that for inflation.
Official figures for the restart and modernization study is between 40 - 42B.
https://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone/2 ... ver-a-year

Historically this will undoubtedly go over budget. so $50B sounds about right. But what about a new one? 80? 90? 100B maybe.

disconnectedradical wrote:It helps if the goal isn't to try to overtake the F-22 as much as the F-22 did with F-15 (trying to develop what's possible in 2000s starting in 1980s) and use more technology that's available or quickly becoming available.


well if that will indeed be the goal (which we don't know yet), wouldn't an upgraded F-22 achieve that at a cheaper price.
The reason why an upgraded F-15 was not considered for the ATF was because the demands of the ATF were too far out of reach.

If the demands of the PCA are not that far, then upgrading several existing may meet those requirements

Re: Penetrating Counter Air / Next Generation Air Dominance

Unread postPosted: 10 Feb 2020, 09:41
by disconnectedradical
zero-one wrote:
disconnectedradical wrote:It helps if the goal isn't to try to overtake the F-22 as much as the F-22 did with F-15 (trying to develop what's possible in 2000s starting in 1980s) and use more technology that's available or quickly becoming available.


well if that will indeed be the goal (which we don't know yet), wouldn't an upgraded F-22 achieve that at a cheaper price.
The reason why an upgraded F-15 was not considered for the ATF was because the demands of the ATF were too far out of reach.

If the demands of the PCA are not that far, then upgrading several existing may meet those requirements


Again the problem is F-22 production line is gone, which is why it costs so much and may not be much cheaper than a new clean sheet. With Super F-22, you can save money by not doing development of new airframe, but then you spend additional money with engineering work on how to replace parts that are out of production (or supplier no longer existing) and also if you want more capabilities or sensors, how do you fit that into existing airframe and how to accommodate extra electrical power and cooling. With clean sheet you can design all that in from beginning.

Aircraft modernization is not trivial at all, and again when you factor in that the production line is gone a Super F-22 might not be much cheaper than a clean sheet that's not super aggressive in how much it beats F-22. And with 25 years of aerodynamic advancement it's not hard for clean sheet to beat F-22.

I get you really like F-22, and we need more aircraft like that, but more F-22s should have happened in 2010 when there was still a production line. Now the line is gone. You can "thank" Donald Rumsfeld and Robert Gates and also War on Terror for that.

Re: Penetrating Counter Air / Next Generation Air Dominance

Unread postPosted: 10 Feb 2020, 13:06
by zero-one
disconnectedradical wrote:
Again the problem is F-22 production line is gone, which is why it costs so much and may not be much cheaper than a new clean sheet. With Super F-22, you can save money by not doing development of new airframe, but then you spend additional money with engineering work on how to replace parts that are out of production (or supplier no longer existing) and also if you want more capabilities or sensors, how do you fit that into existing airframe and how to accommodate extra electrical power and cooling. .


Well those were all covered in the study and they concluded that it would take $40B. Optimistic in my view but I don't have the kind of info they have. They still manage to make super F-15s despite having the primary contractor gone. At the very least I'm pretty sure not all of the primary contractors of the F-15A are still existing. Yes finding new ones will be a challenge, but the whole restart study said it will be possible, and it should cost 40 - 42B

Re: Penetrating Counter Air / Next Generation Air Dominance

Unread postPosted: 10 Feb 2020, 14:23
by disconnectedradical
zero-one wrote:
disconnectedradical wrote:
Again the problem is F-22 production line is gone, which is why it costs so much and may not be much cheaper than a new clean sheet. With Super F-22, you can save money by not doing development of new airframe, but then you spend additional money with engineering work on how to replace parts that are out of production (or supplier no longer existing) and also if you want more capabilities or sensors, how do you fit that into existing airframe and how to accommodate extra electrical power and cooling. .


Well those were all covered in the study and they concluded that it would take $40B. Optimistic in my view but I don't have the kind of info they have. They still manage to make super F-15s despite having the primary contractor gone. At the very least I'm pretty sure not all of the primary contractors of the F-15A are still existing. Yes finding new ones will be a challenge, but the whole restart study said it will be possible, and it should cost 40 - 42B


No, situation with F-22 and F-15 is not the same. F-15 primary contractor and production line still exists, it's just Boeing's St. Louis division, which is McDonnell Douglas after the merger with Boeing in 1997. F-15s are being made for international customers namely Qatar and Saudi Arabia. F-15EX does have new avionics compared to F-15C and have new suppliers, but that and most of actual development was paid for by the Qataris when they ordered F-15QA, so in a sense the F-15EX is piggybacking off the work done for Qatar. But even then the value of F-15EX is pretty dubious, unit cost is about the same or even a bit higher than F-35 but a lot less capable.

Probably the bigger reason for getting F-15EX is for industrial base reasons, making sure Boeing's St. Louis division (old McDonnell Douglas) is still in business so we still have 2 fighter manufacturers active. I personally don't like it but there's is political and industrial justifications for that. I guess Pentagon thinks it's worth keeping Boeing St. Louis alive so Lockheed Martin won't be the only fighter manufacturer left, which would be bad for competition.

By the way that $40 billion is just for procurement, setting up the production line takes another $10 billion which is why total cost of F-22 restart is $50 billion.

Side note, the Boeing-McDonnell Douglas merger arguably damaged Boeing, in terms of corporate culture. Merger also had interesting combination because McDonnell Douglas was Northrop's partner for YF-23, while "original Boeing" (Boeing Seattle) is Lockheed Martin's partner for F-22 (Boeing Seattle made F-22 wings, aft fuselage, and integrated the avionics, they were 33% of the program).