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    AWACS/Command post aircrafts of RuAF

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    limb


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    Post  limb Fri Mar 01, 2024 12:26 pm

    This is an admission that the A-100 is a failure.
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    Post  TMA1 Fri Mar 01, 2024 4:23 pm

    Incorrect. The timeline for the A-100 is a bit ahead in the future. I bet it will be slowed some with sanctions and war and the A-50u with updated hardware and software will fill the spot in the meantime. You take delays as failures. I do not see it as such when Russia is essentially banned from the west and has to reorient things because of this and the war that the west has instigated. Because of these circumstances I would give Russia some slack. An autarchy is not built in a day. Russia still has a ways to go with import substitution and the increasing scale of defense spending and procurement.

    You are the kind of guy that expects Russia to pull a thousand rabbits out of a hat for your ease of mind. That is silly.

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    Post  Isos Fri Mar 01, 2024 5:52 pm

    Not a failure but it will take too long. Destruction of more a-50 can happen quickly and this plane is part of the AD since it guides s-400 missiles.

    They can't allow to loose many and not have replacement.

    I also doubt they will build new ones. Rather upgrade old plateforms or just transform existing il-76.

    Hopefully they are smart enough to use tu-214 airframes and go with a smaller awacs based on tu-114 or SSJ-100.

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    Post  GunshipDemocracy Sat Mar 02, 2024 1:52 am

    Tu-214 unlikely imho since that would require essentially a bit less work than A-100 but significantly than streamlining A-50 assembly line.
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    Post  GarryB Sat Mar 02, 2024 3:56 am

    I suspect their A-50s have been rather more useful than they anticipated and that they realise they probably not only want more of them in upgraded form, but that they will want A-100s in larger numbers and that another system that is smaller and cheaper and easier to make and deploy would be useful.

    They have likely learned a thing or two which will likely be further added to the A-100 design to make it better when it is ready for production, but in the mean time part of the A-100 upgrade is being based on the newer Il-476 aircraft with improved engines and aerodynamics and equipment and systems, which means as the Il-476s enter service older Il-76 will become available perhaps for an A-50U upgrade, but as the Il-476 will be in demand not just for cargo roles but also inflight refuelling and AWACS roles then adding factories to make them to increase production makes sense... even more so when you consider those factories could also make the Il-276 replacement for the An-12 as well, which will also be made in significant numbers.

    I suspect new types of radar are on the verge of being ready for serious testing too.

    They were talking about an Il-114 as a light AWACS type and such an aircraft might be rather useful because of its long flight range potential with added internal fuel tanks being called the Il-140.

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    Post  lancelot Sat Mar 02, 2024 4:25 am

    The Superjet could also do the same tasks once the Russified version is available.

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    Post  Hole Sat Mar 02, 2024 11:42 am

    In that case you need a new antenna and radome.

    A big order for Ka-31/-35 helicopters wouldn´t hurt.

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    Post  Rodion_Romanovic Sat Mar 02, 2024 11:46 am

    If they have to do something like il-114 in AWACS type role I would prefer to see also a carrier capable aircraft like the Yak-44

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    Post  Isos Sat Mar 02, 2024 4:05 pm

    It was fast.



    Yak 44 with updated radar would be a good thing. China and India would buy it for their carriers and they could be used by smaller air forces like Algeria or VietNam.

    A tu-114 or Yak 44 could add precious radar coverage for the AD.

    Old Ka-31 is quite useless. Thry would need something much better and frankly if they have a tu-114 based awacs thrre is no need for it.

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    Post  GarryB Sun Mar 03, 2024 4:20 am

    The Ka-31 is much better than useless... it was chosen by the Russian Army for high resolution radar coverage of the battle space out to about 200km, and depending on the performance of the radar should be good for spotting artillery and drones and low flying aircraft... remember it is intended to detect low flying threats to ships and also periscopes of submarines....

    They are likely working on a Yak-44 replacement but I think the Il-114 might be too big for carrier operations... it would simply take up too much space onboard.

    My thoughts would be that whatever they are designing for their carrier will need lots of power to get airborne but once in the air would not need to be fast so I rather suspect it will have contrarotating turbopropfan engines and cat assistance to get airborne.

    Transferring the radar and electronics and systems to the Il-114 would be a good way to get testing done and get something into service quickly, that would probably sell rather well on the international market that would not be so expensive to operate, while at the same time help boost available funding and development for a carrier based version.

    I wonder if a fixed AESA radar might be developed where there is a round flat antenna but inside is a triangle of AESA facets that don't rotate and scan electronically. The empty space in the centre could store fuel for cooling the radar array which could be saved to when the aircraft is replaced on station and the cooling fuel in the antenna could power the engines during landing when the radar is turned off. It could pump fuel through the fuel system so the fuel in the radar antenna does not get too hot, and the AESA components don't get too hot either.

    Of course I think an airship is the better solution in the longer term for a range of reasons I have explained a few times now.

    BTW they are working on A-50s all the time so a new A-50 is not really a surprise.

    The real bottleneck seems to be Il-476 production and I think making more factories would speed that up as the demand for transports and inflight refuelling aircraft and AWACS platforms is significant, but also the need for a replacement for the An-12 means factories making Il-276s could be set up in a way that they could make either type. There were an enormous number of different An-12 variants in use for a wide range of different roles... all of which will need replacing so the number of Il-276s might actually be rather high. If they mount the jet engines above the wing like with the An-72 and Il-212 then FOD risks on rough airstrips and also its ability for STOL operations will be massively improved too.

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    Post  Rodion_Romanovic Wed Mar 06, 2024 11:21 pm

    GarryB wrote:There were an enormous number of different An-12 variants in use for a wide range of different roles... all of which will need replacing so the number of Il-276s might actually be rather high. If they mount the jet engines above the wing like with the An-72 and Il-212 then FOD risks on rough airstrips and also its ability for STOL operations will be massively improved too.

    If they do not use the Tu-214 as a bases, the first alternative will be a variant of the Il-212.

    After all Soviet union already realised a AWACS version of the An-72, called An-71, which first flew in 1985, but unfortunately the project was then canceled with the fall of Soviet Union.

    It will be just right that the real successor of the An-72 will inherit this role as well.

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    Post  lancelot Thu Mar 07, 2024 1:48 am

    Why not just convert the MC-21 and/or the SJ-100 into AWACS platforms? Is rough field performance really critical on this kind of platform?
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    Post  GarryB Thu Mar 07, 2024 9:30 am

    Very good point and the power advantage of the Il-212 would make it even better for takeoffs and landings.

    As an inflight refuelling aircraft for a carrier aircraft and a light cargo aircraft the Il-212 would also be useful.

    Why not just convert the MC-21 and/or the SJ-100 into AWACS platforms? Is rough field performance really critical on this kind of platform?

    In the longer term such platforms would probably be quite a good idea, but for now it actually makes sense to produce them as airliners and I would say even after the needs of Russian airlines have been met that over time exports of the aircraft will be in demand and also over time the Tupolevs (204/214s) might be relegated to cargo transport and military replacement of obsolete existing types like the Il-20/22, the Tu-154M, the Il-62, the Il-38 etc etc, so airlines might buy even most MS-21s and SJs to fill those gaps.

    Generally if you want an AWACS numbers plane you want smaller and lighter and cheaper so you can operate them in larger numbers without them being too expensive.

    The best example is probably the Hawkeye US naval aircraft.

    This might sound crazy but imagine a high bypass engine like a PD-8 fitted with an afterburner that is only used for takeoff to help get the aircraft airborne from short takeoff runs with out without a catapult.

    The turbofan gradually took over from the raw turbojet because the low bypass turbofan moved more air and the extra air moved by the front fan that bypassed going through the turbojet was still oxygen rich so you could inject rather more fuel into the after burner and get rather more thrust from a turbofan engine than from your average turbojet...

    Just a thought.

    I am thinking the Il-212 would be a good platform with excess power for its size and weight but still not too big to put on a carrier while carrying likely a useful 10-12 ton payload. Engines above the wings would make them rather safer if not safe on the deck of an aircraft carrier and the height wont be a huge issue because Kamov coaxial helicopters are very tall too so height shouldn't be a problem.

    An Il-276 with upper wing mounted engines is probably too big for the job.

    10-12 tons of modern electronics should make it rather capable and a wing optimised for altitude and long cruise time would not be incompatible with a transport role of getting airborne from short rough airstrips.

    Taking the design a bit further and actually giving it thrust vectoring as well as the upper surface blowing effect could further improve performance too... but a catapult will likely still be necessary for carrier use.

    Keep in mind they are also working on other recon/AWACS platforms with the M-17/M-55 high altitude aircraft with pods of different types from 30km to 50km altitude.

    Now I suspect the 50km altitude platform will likely an airship and if that is the case then such a platform would be ideal for all sorts of situations including but not limited to battlefield surveillance and naval operations.

    The antenna size possible in an airship perhaps 100m long would be amazing and simply having a 5km cable antenna for ultra low frequency communications hanging from the airship (would be retractable of course) means communicating with SSBNs at operational depths which would be very useful.

    When the Tu-142 uses its system with a 3km long antenna the aircraft has to fly at speeds dangerously close to stall speed to keep the antenna straight for it to be effective. Easy to just lower the cable antenna from an airship and communicate away.

    Equally a radar antenna built into the structure of the airship that could be bigger than the huge ones the ground forces use, where using the radar would generate heat which is a good thing for an airship in terms of lifting capacity would also be a good thing too.

    Some sort of nuclear power system as used in Perevest would be handy to ensure there was always power to run the electronics and also to readily convert lifting hydrogen to water ballast and back would make the airship rather independent. It could drop down to sea level altitudes and use a dehumidifier to collect up more water/hydrogen as needed and perhaps solar panels to collect free energy to keep batteries topped up and as an alternative back up power source.

    Electric motors to move around the place and fuel cell technology too... and of course fire resistant composites and carbon fibre materials to make up a light very strong structure and various kevlar based materials to make the exterior resistant to damage, with most of the inside filled with inert nitrogen which is plentiful and cheap (70% of the atmosphere)... you could light up dozens of road flares inside and they would not set the hydrogen on fire (without oxygen there it would not burn).

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