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    AWACS/Command post aircrafts of RuAF

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    andalusia


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    AWACS/Command post aircrafts of RuAF - Page 16 Empty does Russia make and export cheap awacs aircraft? What are the pros and cons of smaller awacs jets/planes?

    Post  andalusia Thu May 19, 2022 8:56 am

    does Russia make and export cheap awacs aircraft? What are the pros and cons of smaller awacs jets/planes?



    https://weaponews.com/news/65351938-israel-submitted-a-cheap-awacs-aircraft.html
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    Post  lancelot Thu May 19, 2022 9:14 am

    There is a limited market for things like this. Russia has focused on larger platforms. The Soviets did develop the An-71 at one point but it was cancelled.
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    Post  Isos Thu May 19, 2022 9:57 am

    There is a new proposed il-114 awacs but was never build or ordered. Pros I would sy cheaper, easy to operate and maintain, available in bigger numbers, good radar against f-15 type aircraft. Cons is small radar and with stealthy jets armed with long range missiles it may be in their fire range before it detects them so not useful.

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    Post  Mir Thu May 19, 2022 11:05 am

    A logical development for me would be a A-100 platform but with wingman type AEW drones that can be controlled from the A-100's or ground/shipborne based operators/stations like back in Soviet PVO days.
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    Post  GarryB Thu May 19, 2022 11:40 am

    You can make AWACS types smaller but that means making them less effective and often not a huge amount cheaper.

    They very much are force multipliers.

    The west looked down on Soviet van controlled aircraft, but really AWACS is just a very mobile van with its own airborne radar that it carries around with it.
    ntains
    Their next gen radars are supposed to be surface mounted which could mean a flying wing design with a 120 degree triangular core box shape that could have a radar array along each surface with aerodynamic shaping extenting forward from it so it can fly.

    Airships offer the potential for enormous radar arrays and persistance in terms of how long they could operate.

    Tether them to a building for power and processing data, via the tether for border regions in the mountains or remote locations, and at sea tether it to a ship.

    Modern airships can be made of light strong materials that are fire resistant and would likely be rather difficult to bring down despite theri contents being mostly hydrogen. Purge the inner shell and fill with nitrogen and even penetrating hit wont start a fire because fire needs oxygen to burn.

    Some smaller AWACS platform will be getting worked on for future and current carrier use to replace or suppliment the Ka-31.
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    Post  LMFS Thu May 19, 2022 12:06 pm

    Helios-RLD is the future, and the only way to allow detailed 24/7 surveillance over large areas to ensure really tight interdiction and early detection even of smallest troops movements, not to talk about aircraft / missile activity. They can (and certainly should) have dozens of them. Them carrying one or two anti radiation missiles and overlapping their surveillance areas with other Helios for mutual defence against integrated AD would be the icing in the cake, unless they get enough UCAV permanently on station in the theater to ensure no enemy SAM battery can raise their heads even for a moment.

    Such operational concepts are not possible, or at least not economically feasible, with manned aircraft.

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    Post  andalusia Fri May 20, 2022 2:41 am

    GarryB wrote:You can make AWACS types smaller but that means making them less effective and often not a huge amount cheaper.

    They very much are force multipliers.

    The west looked down on Soviet van controlled aircraft, but really AWACS is just a very mobile van with its own airborne radar that it carries around with it.
    ntains
    Their next gen radars are supposed to be surface mounted which could mean a flying wing design with a 120 degree triangular core box shape that could have a radar array along each surface with aerodynamic shaping extenting forward from it so it can fly.

    Airships offer the potential for enormous radar arrays and persistance in terms of how long they could operate.

    Tether them to a building for power and processing data, via the tether for border regions in the mountains or remote locations, and at sea tether it to a ship.

    Modern airships can be made of light strong materials that are fire resistant and would likely be rather difficult to bring down despite theri contents being mostly hydrogen. Purge the inner shell and fill with nitrogen and even  penetrating hit wont start a fire because fire needs oxygen to burn.

    Some smaller AWACS platform will be getting worked on for future and current carrier use to replace or suppliment the Ka-31.


    When I used to watch History Channel documentaries about the Vietnam aerial war, it criticized the Soviet ground interception control that it didn't allow the pilots creativity.  

    https://www.quora.com/How-true-is-the-perception-common-in-the-West-that-Soviet-pilots-were-mere-extensions-of-ground-control-and-made-little-use-of-their-own-creativity-and-tactical-expertise

    What are some advantages of ground control interception?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ground-controlled_interception


    Last edited by andalusia on Fri May 20, 2022 2:58 am; edited 1 time in total
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    Post  andalusia Fri May 20, 2022 2:44 am

    Isos wrote:There is a new proposed il-114 awacs but was never build or ordered. Pros I would sy cheaper, easy to operate and maintain, available in bigger numbers, good radar against f-15 type aircraft. Cons is small radar and with stealthy jets armed with long range missiles it may be in their fire range before it detects them so not useful.

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    This is a better explanation of the elta praetor p600; I think this AWACS is more advanced than you think.


    https://www.aviacionline.com/2020/12/embraer-iai-elta-praetor-p600-aew-large-capacities-in-a-small-package/
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    Post  lancelot Fri May 20, 2022 5:14 am

    andalusia wrote:When I used to watch History Channel documentaries about the Vietnam aerial war, it criticized the Soviet ground interception control that it didn't allow the pilots creativity.  

    https://www.quora.com/How-true-is-the-perception-common-in-the-West-that-Soviet-pilots-were-mere-extensions-of-ground-control-and-made-little-use-of-their-own-creativity-and-tactical-expertise

    What are some advantages of ground control interception?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ground-controlled_interception
    That talk is retarded. Integrated air defense is what allowed the UK to win the Battle of Britain. But if it is a Soviet system then it is supposed to be a bad idea? The US also had an integrated air defense network with NORAD and SAGE.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Semi-Automatic_Ground_Environment

    The US also had integrated air defense interceptor aircraft. Similar to how the Soviets had the MiG-31 and its predecessors the US had the Delta Dart and its predecessors.

    What you might claim at best is that late Soviet aircraft were more dependent on ground based assistance because their radar, at least on the mass production models, was often inferior. Not because of issues with sensor technology but with lack of miniaturization of radar processing electronics and semiconductors. Which meant that the sensors, when constrained to the size and weight required for an aircraft, were not as effective in practice. The Soviets were like 5-8 years behind the US in semiconductor technology.

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    Post  GarryB Fri May 20, 2022 6:58 am

    When I used to watch History Channel documentaries about the Vietnam aerial war, it criticized the Soviet ground interception control that it didn't allow the pilots creativity

    Hahahahaha.... excellent propaganda... what creativity are you expecting from interceptor pilots?

    The guy in the van has the radar view from multiple ground based radar systems and has a pretty good view of the airspace... based on the information of the attacking enemy aircraft and their flight speed and direction interceptors on the ground will be launched to intercept to attack the targets from behind and below... they get their target information from the guy in the van so they don't need to emit any signal at all.... if you wanted communication and creativity then there would be two way communication which will tell the target they are being hunted. The guy in the van by the 1970s and 1980s didn't talk to the pilots, they just sent auto pilot commands to their aircraft to fly them to a point in space that would be optimum for missile launches and missile hits on targets... they would get an order to open fire.

    Do you think it is a lot different in the west?

    Do you think the Spitfire pilots over the UK could just fly where they liked and do as they pleased?

    They were under strict control too except once the dog fight started they were pretty much on their own.

    Do you think the Soviet ground controllers commanded them to turn left or right in a dog fight?

    That is just silly.

    The difference between a Soviet interception and a western interception was that the GCI controller in the western interception was in an AWACS plane... but not in Vietnam so the pilots had to fly around and find targets on their own which very much made it all hit and miss...

    The Battle of Britain proved it is more effcient to keep your interceptors on the ground ready to get airborne when needed so they were fresh and ready when the enemy attacked... imagine your fighters flying around all the time looking for enemy aircraft... all the fuel you would be burning all the pilots you would need to cover a decent area of air space to make it worth it... that is what they would have to do without radar and it was exhausting for the pilots and crew and wasted a lot of fuel and airframe hours.

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    Post  andalusia Fri May 20, 2022 9:06 am

    GarryB wrote:You can make AWACS types smaller but that means making them less effective and often not a huge amount cheaper.

    They very much are force multipliers.

    The west looked down on Soviet van controlled aircraft, but really AWACS is just a very mobile van with its own airborne radar that it carries around with it.
    ntains
    Their next gen radars are supposed to be surface mounted which could mean a flying wing design with a 120 degree triangular core box shape that could have a radar array along each surface with aerodynamic shaping extenting forward from it so it can fly.

    Airships offer the potential for enormous radar arrays and persistance in terms of how long they could operate.

    Tether them to a building for power and processing data, via the tether for border regions in the mountains or remote locations, and at sea tether it to a ship.

    Modern airships can be made of light strong materials that are fire resistant and would likely be rather difficult to bring down despite theri contents being mostly hydrogen. Purge the inner shell and fill with nitrogen and even  penetrating hit wont start a fire because fire needs oxygen to burn.

    Some smaller AWACS platform will be getting worked on for future and current carrier use to replace or suppliment the Ka-31.


    Just saw this article about Airships:

    https://www.defensemedianetwork.com/stories/return-of-the-military-airship/


    But just one question Garry B, would airships be vulnerable to being shot down since they are slow and have no defenses?

    How would they survive operating in the air? I can imagine them being shot down easier than AWACS aircraft.
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    Post  Hole Fri May 20, 2022 11:51 am

    LMFS wrote:Helios-RLD is the future, and the only way to allow detailed 24/7 surveillance over large areas to ensure really tight interdiction and early detection even of smallest troops movements, not to talk about aircraft / missile activity. They can (and certainly should) have dozens of them. Them carrying one or two anti radiation missiles and overlapping their surveillance areas with other Helios for mutual defence against integrated AD would be the icing in the cake, unless they get enough UCAV permanently on station in the theater to ensure no enemy SAM battery can raise their heads even for a moment.

    Such operational concepts are not possible, or at least not economically feasible, with manned aircraft.

    AEW drones plus ELINT and ECM drones plus UCAV with AAM´s will likely be part of the S-600 AD system.
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    Post  GarryB Sat May 21, 2022 7:53 am

    But just one question Garry B, would airships be vulnerable to being shot down since they are slow and have no defenses?

    The thing is that an airship is actually like a ship in the sense that it is huge and is floating... you can't shoot out its wings to make it sink you have to punch holes into it to let the lifting gas escape and make it heavier than air.

    Very early airships like the hindenberg got a very bad name because the materials it was made of were highly flammable and of course the hydrogen gas they used was also highly flammable... but needs oxygen to burn obviously.

    Replace the fabrics with non flammable materials and the structure with modern composite material that is light and strong and also not flammable and you have something different.

    In an airship there is a structure like the frame of a ship but unlike a ship the frame of an airship contains large numbers of bags that can be inflated or deflated as you require. These bags contain hydrogen gas that creates the lift needed to fly but there are also things like ballast tanks normally filled with water or sand bags that can be dumped in an emergency to gain height, or to maintain control of the ship.

    Using modern hydrogen fuel cell technology you can use water to create hydrogen and hydrogen to create water... which means you can use the fuel cell to create more lifting gas while using up water ballast, or consume lifting gas to create water ballast. One process creates electrical current and the other consumes it, but solar panels and diesel generators can create electrical current as needed too.

    The point is that if you have an airship that is 200m long then you can fit an enormous radar antenna or several inside the structure, but the sheer size means a missile like a sidewinder or R-73 simply wont have the HE power to damage enough internal hydrogen bags to make the airship crash... the explosion and fragments will rip through lots of bags but then layers of kevlar could be included to limit the spread of damage and the air space between the internal bags could be purged of air and replaced with nitrogen. This would mean you could climb in there with a space suit (so you could breathe) and light a road flare or a blow torch and the hydrogen wont burn... it needs oxygen to burn... so with only nitrogen in there nothing will burn... an explosive warhead will explode because it brings its own O2 for the explosion but the layers of kevlar and the strong carbon fibre structure and the area of space will limit how many bags get shredded.

    The point is that a direct hit with a penetrating missile (they normally explode on impact so it would be more surface damage than internal damage) the tens of thousands of lifting bags of gas perhaps a few dozen will be ripped up and become useless... no fire will start because there wont be enough oxygen and the materials the airship is made from wont burn either... dumping ballast to balance out the lift and the airship could probably continue to operate.

    No conventional aircraft could take a sidewinder hit or an R-73 hit and survive.

    AMRAAM has a bigger warhead but the problem remains the same because they are designed to bring down aircraft, not sink a ship...

    Most importantly speed is not important because there are no aircraft that can outrun fighters and their missiles, for naval use the airship just needs to keep up with the ships and a 80-100km/h speed is plenty for that.

    Airships could also be armed with self defence missiles.... you could place a TOR system on board with vertical and ventral missile launch tubes and radar arrays facing in all four directions horizontally and even two facing up and down so any approaching missile can be intercepted by TOR which was designed to shoot down enemy munitions and ARMs of all types... not really practical for a conventional aircraft flying at 600km/h or so.

    Not to mention EW weapons and perhaps even laser systems that could be mounted on an airship... which could be designed to land on water or land surfaces if needed.

    You could design it to operate at 30km altitude which on its own would make it safe from most current fighter aircraft and their AAMs.... note at that altitude the air is so thin the blast wave from any weapon that hits it will be dramatically reduced and the chance of fire is zero too.

    WIth modern composite materials and fuel cell technology and work on electric engines and even small nuclear reactors, as well as new radar technology... this could be very very exciting.

    AWACS is not about high speed, it is about altitude and visual range... being up in the air low flying sea skimming missiles can no longer hide below the horizon and the size of the airship means you can have several different radar arrays for different frequency ranges with very large antennas which is always good for discriminating very small targets. A bit of AI and computer processing and the actual birds and insects can be eliminated from the target screens and the bird and insect sized stealthy targets can be revealed... with a tether you could send the data to a building or large ship via fibre optics and that building or ship could supply electrical power to run all sorts of radar and EO arrays as well as self defence systems.

    It also means combat persistance so you don't need to take space on your aircraft carriers for AWACS planes, you can just carry fighters and light strike aircraft as needed. Obviously a smaller AWACS platform would be valuable too as it could operate in remote locations with a group of fighters to protect areas or expected lines of attack, so I think A-100 and a smaller AWACS makes sense too especially if it can operate from carriers, but it is the AWACS platform that drives the size of modern aircraft carriers... never skimp on your situational awareness.
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    Post  11E Sun May 22, 2022 5:03 pm

    GarryB wrote:
    When I used to watch History Channel documentaries about the Vietnam aerial war, it criticized the Soviet ground interception control that it didn't allow the pilots creativity

    Hahahahaha.... excellent propaganda... what creativity are you expecting from interceptor pilots?

    The guy in the van has the radar view from multiple ground based radar systems and has a pretty good view of the airspace... based on the information of the attacking enemy aircraft and their flight speed and direction interceptors on the ground will be launched to intercept to attack the targets from behind and below... they get their target information from the guy in the van so they don't need to emit any signal at all.... if you wanted communication and creativity then there would be two way communication which will tell the target they are being hunted. The guy in the van by the 1970s and 1980s didn't talk to the pilots, they just sent auto pilot commands to their aircraft to fly them to a point in space that would be optimum for missile launches and missile hits on targets... they would get an order to open fire.

    Do you think it is a lot different in the west?

    Do you think the Spitfire pilots over the UK could just fly where they liked and do as they pleased?

    They were under strict control too except once the dog fight started they were pretty much on their own.

    Do you think the Soviet ground controllers commanded them to turn left or right in a dog fight?

    That is just silly.

    The difference between a Soviet interception and a western interception was that the GCI controller in the western interception was in an AWACS plane... but not in Vietnam so the pilots had to fly around and find targets on their own which very much made it all hit and miss...

    The Battle of Britain proved it is more effcient to keep your interceptors on the ground ready to get airborne when needed so they were fresh and ready when the enemy attacked... imagine your fighters flying around all the time looking for enemy aircraft... all the fuel you would be burning all the pilots you would need to cover a decent area of air space to make it worth it... that is what they would have to do without radar and it was exhausting for the pilots and crew and wasted a lot of fuel and airframe hours.


    Very true, Dutch F-16s (and Belgian F-16s when they have QRA duty above the Netherlands) are guided to their target by ground controllers and give them course, altitude, when they have to bank lef/right in order to get in an optimum position to identify an aircraft or in order to get a good firing position.

    IIRC the F-106 could be taken over by ground control and then the pilot had only to do the final part of the intercetion.

    Sincerely,
    Lesley

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    Post  GarryB Mon May 23, 2022 3:25 am

    The key is in the designation AWACS.

    If it was just a radar only then it would be called AEW or airborne early warning, but it is not just a radar, it is a ground control intercept system in the air with the radar.

    The core advantages is that it can look down and see very low flying targets and its radar horizon is enormous, but also for HATO it is mobile so when you go to Libya or Syria or other countries you can take it all with you very easily.

    Western pilots have the creativity to do as they please like a soldier in a western army gets to decide which attacks they are involved with... or a police officer gets to choose which laws to enforce and which to ignore...

    The radar in the AWACS gives the air controller an excellent view of the airspace and allows them all the information they need to direct interceptor aircraft to take on intruders in a way that the intruder will never know what hit them.

    Most intruders will come in low so they are hard to spot, but that limits their top speed, so the AWACS that detects the enemy can look at its height and direction and speed and work out which interceptor, either in the air or on the ground would be best to launch to intercept the target. The interceptor can climb high and fly at high speed and easily catch up any low flying target and can then dive down behind them and shoot them without warning from a relatively safe direction.

    Creativity does not come in to it.

    Just after desert storm concluded in the early 1990s two Blackhawk helicopters carrying US and other officials were flying along the border of Iraq and the AWACS in the area spotted the targets but could not determine what they were so ordered two F-15s to get close and have a visual check to ID them... they were not using the correct IFF code but had just crossed a border. The F-15s fearing the helicopters might be Hinds did not get within 5km of the helicopters and flying at 800km/h identified them as Hinds. They were cleared to open fire and shot both helicopters down.

    Mistakes all round but really Hinds are not great threat to F-15s... for a start if you have your radar turned off (you are trying to get a visual ID) the Hinds wont even know you are there... you could fly to one side and fly much closer than 5km away from them moving sideways never getting in front of them so you get a close up look and they wont even know you are there.

    The guy on the AWACS should have demanded a better ID.

    The guys on the helicopters should have changed their IFF codes moving into a new location.

    It was the guy in the AWACS who got the blame so they clearly don't expect their pilots to show creativity or flair... they just follow orders and the guy controlling them gets the chop.

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    Post  Mig-31BM2 Super Irbis-E Mon May 23, 2022 9:44 pm

    A TU-214 AWACS, this is a must! More Units, More Operatios Time.

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    Post  flamming_python Tue May 24, 2022 1:46 am

    Mig-31BM2 Super Irbis-E wrote:A TU-214 AWACS, this is a must! More Units, More Operatios Time.

    What would be it's advantage over an Il-76 based AWACS?
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    Post  GunshipDemocracy Tue May 24, 2022 1:52 am

    flamming_python wrote:
    Mig-31BM2 Super Irbis-E wrote:A TU-214 AWACS, this is a must! More Units, More Operatios Time.

    What would be it's advantage over an Il-76 based AWACS?



    Regardless of potential advantages Russia needs as many passenger aircraft as possible. Having ll-476 would be wasting Tu-214 potential as passenger liners.







    GarryB wrote:

    Very early airships like the hindenberg got a very bad name because the materials it was made of were highly flammable and of course the hydrogen gas they used was also highly flammable... but needs oxygen to burn obviously.

    Replace the fabrics with non flammable materials and the structure with modern composite material that is light and strong and also not flammable and you have something different.

    In an airship there is a structure like the frame of a ship but unlike a ship the frame of an airship contains large numbers of bags that can be inflated or deflated as you require. These bags contain hydrogen gas that creates the lift needed to fly but there are also things like ballast tanks normally filled with water or sand bags that can be dumped in an emergency to gain height, or to maintain control of the ship.


    helium ? and no fire danger  anymore.
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    Post  caveat emptor Tue May 24, 2022 2:36 am

    flamming_python wrote:
    Mig-31BM2 Super Irbis-E wrote:A TU-214 AWACS, this is a must! More Units, More Operatios Time.

    What would be it's advantage over an Il-76 based AWACS?
    Cheaper to operate. Russian MoD is already using Tu-214 for different roles, so some unification is always welcome.
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    Post  GarryB Tue May 24, 2022 11:54 am

    helium ? and no fire danger anymore.

    Too expensive, plus you can release hydrogen from water using a fuel cell and an electrical current, or process hydrogen through a fuel cell to create electrical current and heat and the byproduct is water ballast... a very useful arrangement.

    Cheaper to operate. Russian MoD is already using Tu-214 for different roles, so some unification is always welcome.

    The Tu-214 would certainly be cheaper to operate and would free up more Il-476 airframes for transports which are probably more urgently needed.

    A very small AWACS type would also be valuable... something that might operate from an aircraft carrier in the Yak-44 class range... and if you are going to make such a type then make a civilian cargo type from the same platform would also make sense so the carrier based version is not so expensive.

    The carrier based AWACS would need a folding wing design, and a transport/cargo model would need the same but a more conventionally winged model for land based use would be a good idea as well, and some sort of inflight refuelling kit for the carge transport type would allow the two models (AWACS and Cargo) versions to perform three important roles. If you could design the transport type to release depth charges and bombs and even torpedoes out the back then you could have a carrier based anti sub fixed wing type too which would be interesting.
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    Post  Mig-31BM2 Super Irbis-E Wed May 25, 2022 5:12 pm

    Would the IL-112 on the wearer as AWACs?

    Tu-214:
    - More aircraft and thus more operal time
    - much cheaper and better to wait
    - Hardly poorer scan range
    - More new IL-76 capacities are happy for Transport

    - new medium Range Airplane tanker (and more new IL-76 for Transport

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    Post  limb Wed May 25, 2022 8:24 pm

    Can the A-50U detect sea skimming missiles flying at 2-5m?
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    Post  GunshipDemocracy Wed May 25, 2022 11:51 pm

    GarryB wrote:
    helium ? and no fire danger  anymore.

    Too expensive, plus you can release hydrogen from water using a fuel cell and an electrical current, or process hydrogen through a fuel cell to create electrical current and heat and the byproduct is water ballast... a very useful arrangement.

    so far nobody tries system as you propose so technology is yet to be invented, implemented and proven. This ,mans years and years.
    Besides nobody releases helium to land BTW



    As for helium - Russia produces ~25% worlds output. And Russian reserves are close to 1/3 US ones . So in case of needs Russia has enough helium to pump the whole airship awacs fleet.




    Cheaper to operate. Russian MoD is already using Tu-214 for different roles, so some unification is always welcome.

    The Tu-214 would certainly be cheaper to operate and would free up more Il-476 airframes for transports which are probably more urgently needed.
    [/quote]


    Russia needs urgently replace 300Airbusses/Boeings so no way Il-476 will be swapped with Tu-214. Costs of not having airliners (actually folding up the airlines' business in Russia) is much bigger then couple of il-476 used not as transports.

    so not really to me.
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    Post  GarryB Thu May 26, 2022 9:29 am

    Would the IL-112 on the wearer as AWACs?

    Different sized aircraft would require different radar "packages" and it would come down to what sort of performance you want.

    What sized airfields do you want to operate it from, what distances do you want it to see x sized targets at, how many aircraft will it control against how many targets at once etc etc.

    Russia has a lot of ground based radar systems so AWACS were often intended as gap fillers or platforms that can operate in locations where mountains create gaps, or like in Syria to create a decent view in hostile territory where you might not control all of the ground.

    The core problem is that the radar and the electronics and communication equipment are never going to be cheap, though smaller lighter aircraft will be cheaper to operate they are still going to be costly... but their benefits would make them worth it... for instance if India detected an incursion from Pakistan or China... being able to launch an AWACS to fly into the area and coordinate the air defence would be very valuable and greatly increase the capability of the aircraft in the area in terms of managing the defence.

    Can the A-50U detect sea skimming missiles flying at 2-5m?

    Should do... but not out to thousands of kms...

    so far nobody tries system as you propose so technology is yet to be invented, implemented and proven.

    Airships are being built right now and not out of aluminium and flammable fabrics...

    Besides nobody releases helium to land BTW

    Because it is so expensive.

    As for helium - Russia produces ~25% worlds output. And Russian reserves are close to 1/3 US ones . So in case of needs Russia has enough helium to pump the whole airship awacs fleet.

    The fact that they are not currently using them in airships suggests they are using it for other purposes... other than party balloons and making your voice sound funny...

    Russia needs urgently replace 300Airbusses/Boeings so no way Il-476 will be swapped with Tu-214. Costs of not having airliners (actually folding up the airlines' business in Russia) is much bigger then couple of il-476 used not as transports.

    Before this situation started the only buyers of Tu-214s were the Russian military, which has a lot of obsolete aircraft that need replacing including Tu-154Ms and Tu-134s and Il-20/22s, and especially Il-38s.

    Right now the Russian Army has bought Ka-31s which I believe they are calling Ka-35s for battlefield recon... personally I think some Mi-38s with phased radar array antennas on the sides and rear would be more useful and could be used to detect enemy drones etc

    Maybe reshape the fuselage to make the rear wider to angle the side panels forward and have a flat panel facing backwards to get 360 degree coverage without needing a spinning antenna...

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    Post  GarryB Thu May 26, 2022 9:31 am

    BTW regarding the risk of hydrogen... an Il-78 AWACS platform carries just under 65 tons of avgas... how is that any safer?

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