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Tsavo Lion
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    Russian VTOL fighter development


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    Russian VTOL fighter development - Page 6 Empty Re: Russian VTOL fighter development

    Post  GarryB Wed Jul 24, 2019 4:58 am

    It depends on the application. VTOL jets are literally death traps for human pilots, no need to risk human pilots life and limb for that capability...however a smaller (in the 5-10 ton range) but capable VTOL UAV/UCAV aircraft seems feasible and reasonable.

    Except in that range we are talking about Yak-130 type aircraft that will be 15-20 million dollars each... they already have plenty of helicopters that can take off vertically and UAVs that have the potential for much better performance.

    Making a platform vertical take off or vertical landing (without parachutes) is just making that aircraft fragile... to take off vertically it needs a high power to weight ratio... which means a big engine or engines and as light a structure as you can make it... you know... fragile.

    The big engine in a light aircraft means it will have good acceleration and speed but poor range and payload because extra payload means more power from the engine and less weight in the structure... which means weak structure... not only fragile but not likely to last a very long time or serious use...

    Like it or not, the most likely standard Russian VTOL fighter is the Ka-52K... and improvements in high speed helicopter technology should allow rather a useful little fighter to be developed that can be carried by most Russian ships... which is rather more than can be said for the F-35 type aircraft which will never be able to land on Russian corvettes or frigates etc.

    Scramjet powered AAMs with decent solid rocket boosters should allow rather good air to air target engagement performance anyway... even from lower flight speeds and lower flight altitudes...

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    Post  Gazputin Mon Aug 05, 2019 9:52 am

    this is probably where its going ….

    its genius ….. VTOL with wings retracted for less drag in vertical and good for storage
    wings extend in horizontal flight ….

    fairly fast subsonic ….. but with hypersonic weapons ….who cares ?
    and long range and loiter ...

    Manned VTOL fighters have useless range as lift engine is where fuel is usually placed ..

    so anyway figures quoted.... real product about as big and heavy as a Yak-130 …. 7000 kg
    before wings extended
    looks genius to me …

    personally I think manned VTOL aircraft are about as useful as a hat full of farts ….

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    Russian VTOL fighter development - Page 6 Empty Re: Russian VTOL fighter development

    Post  GarryB Mon Aug 05, 2019 3:27 pm

    The core of the problem with previous VSTOL fighter attempts is the lift engine is generally dead weight in normal flight... where is spends the majority of its time operating...

    Of course underneath the skin there are also small pipes for puffer jets at the wing tips, nose and tail to help manouver the aircraft while in the hover where no airflow over the control surfaces means it manouvers like a dog.

    Thrust vectoring engines at the tail and wing tips could possibly work with the right wing shape, but at the end of the day for any high speed performance you are looking at engines generating a lot of heat pointed straight down, so only special surfaces can be used for takeoff and landing... most normal airstrips would be destroyed with just one takeoff or landing... and the problem of hot air ingestion into the intakes of any one of those engines means very low altitude engine stall which is a pain for a conventional aircraft but normally fatal for a VSTOL fighter.

    Personally I think a 300-350 metre long carrier means you can take off with a ramp in a modern conventional fighter because of their power to weight ratios and internal weapons carriage anyway, and it also means the carrier is big enough to carry all the things you will want like lots of aviation fuel and munitions, as well as proper air defence weapons and nice large powerful sensors.

    An aircraft carrier is never going to be cheap... you can make is slightly cheaper by making it smaller, but really it is self defeating, because compared with the cost of all the vessels that will be operating with it the carrier itself is not that expensive... it is like saying having an airforce is an extravagance when you are paying for an Army anyway... don't bother with those air fields and fighter planes because the Army has SAMs that can deal with enemy air threats.

    Well they do, but any defence is enhanced greatly by airborne radar that can see over mountains and in gaps in the ground based radar and aircraft can go out and inspect something that should not be there... an Army or Navy based SAM is either launched or not launched... it is too slow and expensive to send a ship or an armoured vehicle to go and have a look... in peace time it offers commanders of forces peace of mind to be able to send out an aircraft to check it out so you know for sure, and even in war it can prevent a costly mistake... I mean it isn't perfect... the Americans managed to shoot down two of their own helicopters just after Desert Storm because they thought they were Hinds and the fighters sent to check were too scared to get close enough to correctly ID them, but it was the asian guy in the AWACS that got it in the neck for that incident.

    The ability and performance of a surface group of ships is greatly amplified with AWACS and Fighter air cover to support their operations, and in the future as hypersonic missiles proliferate then that air cover is going to become critical to add layers to the defences to improve chances of defending yourself in hostile waters.

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