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    Future Russian Aircraft Carriers and Deck Aviation. #2

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    Lennox


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    Post  Lennox Thu Jan 06, 2022 2:53 am

    PapaDragon wrote:
    GarryB wrote:Amusing you think a smaller lighter less capable ship than a Kuznetsov is better... better for what exactly?...

    Better for floating above surface, better for sailing on the surface, better for moving under it's own power, better for not being on fire, better for carrying combat aircraft, better for launching combat aircraft, better for retrieving combat aircraft

    Some other things as well but this is the gist of it

    Technically, the reason why the Kuznetsov is in its poor (shit) state today is because it never received the upgrades it needed (most notably, the steam turbines. Current ones are way, way underpowered, which explained everything from mobility to black smoke). And the reason for that is mostly lack of funding. So if they have enough funding now, it would most likely go to the Kuznetsov than a new carrier.

    The Varan does look interesting though, because it doesnt really look like other designs. Carriers arent just for launching combat aircrafts. They have been a show of military power and essentially a signal that a country is shifting its doctrine from regional to global presence. But the Varan is, well, a bit small for that Smile I wouldnt be surprised if one day they decided to build a carrier that looks exactly like the Varan but with only UAVs

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    Post  GarryB Thu Jan 06, 2022 7:04 am

    Better for floating above surface, better for sailing on the surface, better for moving under it's own power, better for not being on fire, better for carrying combat aircraft, better for launching combat aircraft, better for retrieving combat aircraft

    Actually the Kuznetsov floats better than any vapourware.

    The Varan clearly has no ski jump so would require EMALS to be fitted... any idea when they might be ready and working?

    The Varan has not left the drawing board so it isn't better at anything at all.

    Some other things as well but this is the gist of it

    Don't forget much cheaper because it doesn't cost anything at all when you haven't made it.

    Kuznetsov itself is not really bigger than varan at all, a comparison of the displacement reveals a difference of maybe 5000-10000 tons when kuznetsov is fully loaded.

    Why are people against varan so much?

    Because the Varan is an idea... vapourware, but the whole idea of a new design is to meet the needs of the military and the military has already said the Kuznetsov is a stepping stone that is too small to be operationally useful and that they ideal carrier is bigger and able to carry more of everything to make it more useful.

    The Varan would be an enormous step backwards... why not suggest just making more Kiev class carriers?

    At 24 fighters it's not that different from kuznetsov either in terms of carrying aircraft

    Except the billions you spend on a Varan, and the decade and a half it would take to get something operational in the water would end up giving you something less capable than you already have.

    A Syrian-Russian shipyard in Tartus or Latkatia with a dry dock or a floating dock (from Turkey).

    Of course... spend the last 20 years investing in Russian shipyards and get your carriers made in a foreign country vulnerable to colour revolution or just western invasion.

    When Russia starts pumping all that gas that would be going to the EU through Mongolia to China, HATO might suddenly feel that the Syrians need HATO help and invade to secure the land there for a gas pipeline through occupied Syria and occupied Iraq from the UAE to the EU...


    This allows a construction of the Varan or Kuznetsov class to be made possible. Large components via transport via Black Sea or Northern Sea. (Modular construction)

    And they could send a dry dock to Mexico and make them there too but why would they want to?

    They have airbases in Syria... why would they need aircraft carriers there?

    So the Mediterranean fleet could be left completety there.
    Just a dock for the escort ships, a hall for submarine construction (small hunting submarines) to the same time buyan-M kits for the Syrian Navy.

    Russia does not need aircraft carriers for the Med, they will probably base a helicopter carrier in the Black Sea, but no aircraft carrier would be needed there.

    If anything this is a more modern replacement for the large amphibious LHDs.

    More important they have helicopter landing ships in production... if modular and saving money means anything at all why not put an EMALS cat system on an Ivan Rogov design for a stupid useless mini carrier.

    Every few years someone comes up with these brilliant ideas but they never go anywhere because they don't work.

    In the 1980s everyone was going to have VSTOL fighters because ten hours into any modern war and all fixed locations like airfields would be destroyed.

    The technology to destroy airfields has only improved and where is the Harrier and Yak-38 now?

    It should be noted that I'm not the world's greatest fan of VTOL aircraft, but these aircraft had a role to play . During the early development the US and the French had some interesting concepts that came to nothing.

    The Soviets had some interesting ideas that also came to nothing... and that is the point... came to nothing... dead end... without a serious upgrade or update in technology it is an expensive dead end.

    The money you save on small ships you spend on replacement aircraft and the fact that these planes are not great against anything like a peer enemy.

    The Sea Harrier looks great against Skyhawks and obsolete Mirages, but against a real modern fighter it would be dead meat... at the time an Su-27 or MiG-29 or even MiG-23 with BVR missiles... today the VSTOL F-35 would struggle against a Rafale or Su-35, let alone an Su-57...

    The F-35 is a screwed up aircraft but the VSTOL model is a joke.

    The naval variant of the British Harrier was optimized for air defense, whilst the Yak-38 was a light strike fighter which makes it rather difficult to compare the Yak-38 with the Sea Harrier.

    The Yak-38 was intended mainly for shooting down enemy MPA aircraft, and its strike capacity was pathetic... the Vulkan missiles on the Kiev class carriers it operated from were much more potent anti ship weapons.

    On sheer performance the Yak-38 was significantly faster than the Harrier at 1280km/h vs 1065km/h but the Harrier had a slightly better range and could fly 100kms further. The Sea Harrier on the other hand had a much better max takeoff weight at 17 600 vs 11 300.

    There was no comparison. The Yak-38 was awful. Its tiny wing allowed it slightly better speed, but the cost was less lift and less space for fuel and mediocre flight performance...

    The Harrier was a much better aircraft, especially the Sea Harrier with its excellent radar, but was like the F-16 handicapped by WVR missiles only for its early life... a MiG-23 with BVR missiles... especially the IR guided models would have eaten the Harrier for breakfast...

    Both were quite difficult to fly according to the guys who actually flew these things. The Harrier has a very long list of accidents through the years. India alone lost 16 out of 31 Sea Harriers that claimed 7 pilots over the years. About a third of the Yak's were lost in accidents.

    The auto ejection system meant a lot more Yaks were lost considering the amount of action they saw, but it also meant it was quite rare to lose crew for the Yak compared with the Harrier.

    The Kiev had it's issues but it was quite an unique ship and true to Soviet tradition it was a heavily armed Cruiser that also happened to carry aircraft.

    The Soviet and Russian concept of an aircraft carrier was different from the wests view. The Kiev was an anti sub ship primarily, while the Kuznetsov was air defence, so the Su-33 was chosen over the fully multirole MiG-33 which was the equivalent of choosing an F-15C over an F/A-18.

    More interesting is that the Kiev was chosen in favour of the Pr.1153 Orel carrier design as it was the cheaper option! The Orel was a super carrier similar in size to the US Kitty Hawks but was also considered to be an Aircraft Carrying Cruiser by the Soviets - not just for legal reasons - as it was also armed with 24 cruise missiles. The one thing I liked about Soviet ships is that they were well armed to defend themselves. I hope the Russians would continue this tradition.

    They realised their mistake... the range of Trident meant anti sub carriers no longer made sense, so the focus for carriers became air support for surface ships in support of Kirov class cruisers.

    With upgrades of UKSK launch tubes a new Kirov type would be even more of a strike platform able to carry 4,500km range LACMs as well as anti ship missiles.

    Mi-8 or Mi-38 size would be too large for Russian Navy carrier needs - land based Mi-14 types would be great though. The Minoga should replace the Helix in future.Mi-8 or Mi-38 size would be too large for Russian Navy carrier needs - land based Mi-14 types would be great though. The Minoga should replace the Helix in future.

    Hard to say with models but the Minoga looks like a coaxial Mi-38 in terms of body size, so it might be a naval Mi-14 and Helix replacement all in one... a sort of massively scaled up Ka-226...

    The Varan carrier is not going to be the sole type of aircraft carrier the Russian Navy would eventually want to build but the design concept is pretty sound and affordable and that is why the Navy is already taking a serious interest in the concept - and not just as a mini aircraft carrier.

    I would call it a niche design, which defeats the purpose... for it to be useful with its modular design it would need to be produced in various other roles... like a cruiser and a helicopter carrier, but unfortunately for it they already have a helicopter carrier in production which could make the basis of a mini carrier for the med to be operational with the Ivan Rogov class helicopter carrier that will be based in the Black Sea and support its operations in the north of Africa... but rather than use the Varan design which is vapourware it would make more sense to use the 40K ton design of the Ivan Rogov class with an EMALS cats it might work with Su-75s or a replacement MiG twin engined naval fighter.

    Current ones are way, way underpowered, which explained everything from mobility to black smoke). And the reason for that is mostly lack of funding. So if they have enough funding now, it would most likely go to the Kuznetsov than a new carrier.

    Half were replaced just before going to Syria, and the rest were replaced after it had been in Syria so it should be pretty good now.

    But the Varan is, well, a bit small for that Smile I wouldnt be surprised if one day they decided to build a carrier that looks exactly like the Varan but with only UAVs

    A Varan type purely for launching UAVs... VSTOL ones, conventional take off ones, sea surface ones and submersible ones... would make sense... except they are already talking about one helicopter carrier and one UAV platform for the Ivan Rogov class... so four to be made with two UAV platforms and two helicopter landing ships... what do we need the Varan for again?

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    Post  GarryB Thu Jan 06, 2022 7:17 am

    Talking about modular... why not a multi hull design, but unify the hull with the design of the cruisers that would escort the ship.

    Three hulls... two forward and one to the rear in the centre... make it a 60 K to 70 K ton vessel so each hull is about a 20 K ton hull so it can be standardised and used for nuclear powered cruisers for escorts... if you are making two or three carriers and four cruisers to escort each carrier that means 3 CVNs and four cruisers, so 7 hulls per carrier group... 21 hulls laid down at a time... expensive, but it means if you cancel a carrier that frees up three new cruiser hulls...

    Now those cruiser hulls could be modular and could be used for helicopter carriers or hospital ships or UAV carrier ships... sub tenders... airship tenders...
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    Post  Mir Thu Jan 06, 2022 9:04 am

    The Yak-38 was intended mainly for shooting down enemy MPA aircraft, and its strike capacity was pathetic... the Vulkan missiles on the Kiev class carriers it operated from were much more potent anti ship weapons.

    I compared the Yak-38 to the Sea Harrier as they were both intended for carrier operations but to be fair to the Yak it should rather be compared to the GR series of the Harrier. Both were light strike fighters (as I've mentioned) with basically the same capabilities although the Harrier could carry a heavier load.
    Neither the Yak nor the Harrier were ever intended as carrier killers! Smile
    The Kiev's never had the Vulkan installed but the Bazalt was almost equal to the task.

    Hard to say with models but the Minoga looks like a coaxial Mi-38 in terms of body size, so it might be a naval Mi-14 and Helix replacement all in one... a sort of massively scaled up Ka-226..

    The Minoga should be similar in size to the current Helix.
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    Post  Mir Thu Jan 06, 2022 11:21 am

    Just had a quick peek on Harrier losses vs the Yak-38. I've mentioned above that a third of the Yak's were lost in accidents but it seems to be much less than that with less than 50 aircraft. Some of the accidents occurred after the Yak's were withdrawn from service.

    I've also mentioned the Harrier's very long list of accidents since the 60's which equals the entire production run of the Yaks at 230+ losses! Six US Harriers that were destroyed on the ground by militant action are not included in the tally.
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    Post  GarryB Thu Jan 06, 2022 12:22 pm

    The Minoga should be similar in size to the current Helix.

    Similar cross section to the Mi-38 and not needing the very long tail... the fuselage will likely be extended to something closer to the Mi-38, and likely a rear ramp door will be fitted to improve entry exit options... and of course it will need more powerful engines...

    I compared the Yak-38 to the Sea Harrier as they were both intended for carrier operations but to be fair to the Yak it should rather be compared to the GR series of the Harrier. Both were light strike fighters (as I've mentioned) with basically the same capabilities although the Harrier could carry a heavier load.

    Doesn't matter which version of Harrier you compare it to... the Yak was a dog... no radar and basic armament... not a capable aircraft in any sense of the word.

    Just had a quick peek on Harrier losses vs the Yak-38. I've mentioned above that a third of the Yak's were lost in accidents but it seems to be much less than that with less than 50 aircraft. Some of the accidents occurred after the Yak's were withdrawn from service.

    Well rather more Harriers were made and they were rather more widely deployed and used in combat on several occasions.

    The Yak was tested in Afghanistan in the light ground support role, where it failed terribly... dust was a problem...

    But at the time everyone thought the new VSTOL fighters would do everything and be wonderful... they could be slower than normal fighters and CAS aircraft because their ability to operate on tiny areas meant you could operate them from the front line so much less commute times and more time on station.

    The reality is that the tiny takeoff spots was bullshit... it was always bullshit and the side mounted engine nozzles meant IR guided missiles were a serious danger even from the front. Normally most IR guided missiles were tail chasers at that time so you could really only launch a missile at a plane after it had already flown over you... VSTOL fighters had hot bits sticking out the sides so most angles it was an easy kill... even an old Strela SA-7 got a kill of a Harrier in the Falklands... an old export model which was essentially a Red Eye... which were awful... but still good for VSTOLs and helicopters.

    I've also mentioned the Harrier's very long list of accidents since the 60's which equals the entire production run of the Yaks at 230+ losses! Six US Harriers that were destroyed on the ground by militant action are not included in the tally.

    Harriers got used. The Yaks did not... and the Yak-38M upgrade actually made it worse. The more powerful engine allowed higher weights and improved acceleration, but burned fuel faster, do not increase top speed very much... it remained subsonic... and reduced operational flight radius... no radar meant its weapons options were very limited anyway... It was an incomplete plane...
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    Post  Mir Thu Jan 06, 2022 2:07 pm

    Similar cross section to the Mi-38 and not needing the very long tail... the fuselage will likely be extended to something closer to the Mi-38, and likely a rear ramp door will be fitted to improve entry exit options... and of course it will need more powerful engines...

    The problem is that the Minoga is a ship-born helicopter and will have to fit inside the hanger space of the Gorshkov frigates. The Ka-27 is already a tight fit. Anything with the dimensions of the Mi-38 simply won't fit. The good news is that apparently it will have very powerful engines and it will be much lighter than the Ka-27 due to extensive composite use.
    Future Russian Aircraft Carriers and Deck Aviation. #2 - Page 33 12361910

    Doesn't matter which version of Harrier you compare it to... the Yak was a dog... no radar and basic armament... not a capable aircraft in any sense of the word.

    The GR's had no radar either and compared tot the Gr1 version the earliest Yak-38 could launch air to surface missiles - not so with the Gr1. The Yak was more or less equal to the Gr3 version and only outclassed by the latter Harrier II (GR5/7/9)variants. By then the far more capable than any Harrier Yak-41 was set to replace the Yak-38M.
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    Post  GarryB Fri Jan 07, 2022 2:37 am

    That image of the Helix highlights how narrow the fuselage of the helicopter is... a Coaxial rotor helicopter does not need a long tail, so making the body wider and having a longer body with internal cabin space that ends at the rear with a large ramp door is what I expect they will be aiming for.

    Side doors only is limiting... a Hind and a Blackhawk and a Helix only have side doors which limits the speed you can get on or off each helicopter... and having a rear ramp door means you can carry small vehicles internally too which is another bonus as well as allowing a rear gunner as well as side door gunners in dangerous airspace.

    The GR's had no radar either and compared tot the Gr1 version the earliest Yak-38 could launch air to surface missiles - not so with the Gr1. The Yak was more or less equal to the Gr3 version and only outclassed by the latter Harrier II (GR5/7/9)variants.

    The Yak was only ever deployed on Kiev class ships operationally which are large anti submarine carriers... their opportunity for using air to surface missiles was extremely limited...

    The air to surface missile they could operate had the HATO codename AS-7 Kerry and was a command guided missile with the Soviet codename Kh-23 and required a guidance pod to help the pilot operate it.

    You have already mentioned the VSTOL fighter is difficult to fly.... this is a manually flown command guided missile that was difficult to operate in a conventional aircraft let alone balanced on a monocycle on a fence balancing a ball on your head...

    Most often they had AAMs, or gun pods or rocket pods as armament.

    By then the far more capable than any Harrier Yak-41 was set to replace the Yak-38M.

    The Yak-141 had some potential, but it was never anywhere close to operational... it could go fast, but in every regard was inferior to a MiG-29.... it had four weapon pylons and no ability to carry more because the hot air from the main engine and the two lift engines required fences on the other side to detach the hot engine airflow away from the air intakes because that hot oxygen depleted airflow causes engine stalls. It is slower than a MiG, has less payload and less range, is less manouverable... they were going to put a good radar in it but they could put that radar in the MiG too...

    The Yak-141 was never fully developed into an operational aircraft and even if the prototype is sitting around somewhere it would need a complete rework to make it stealthier so you would be starting from scratch again.

    They have upgraded the engine... I have seen versions of the R79 with 22 tons thrust... but ironically increasing the thrust on a VSTOL fighter just screws up the balance and you have the shift the engine exhaust and position of lift engines and fans...

    Totally a dead end.
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    Post  Mir Fri Jan 07, 2022 8:54 am

    That image of the Helix highlights how narrow the fuselage of the helicopter is... a Coaxial rotor helicopter does not need a long tail, so making the body wider and having a longer body with internal cabin space that ends at the rear with a large ramp door is what I expect they will be aiming for.

    Side doors only is limiting... a Hind and a Blackhawk and a Helix only have side doors which limits the speed you can get on or off each helicopter... and having a rear ramp door means you can carry small vehicles internally too which is another bonus as well as allowing a rear gunner as well as side door gunners in dangerous airspace.

    If the picture was taken from the opposite side you would probably comment on how wide the fuselage is Laughing
    However the fuselage is not the problem though - the undercarriage determines the actual width of the ship-born helicopter. The Helix sits quite wide at 3.8m whilst the Mi-38 width is 4.5m.

    South Africa used the Puma/Oryx helicopters extensively during the bush war and those big side doors on either side of the helicopter allowed troops to exit much quicker than the ramp door on the Super Frelon. The troops also had a great view of what was going on on the ground.  
    Future Russian Aircraft Carriers and Deck Aviation. #2 - Page 33 Puma-c10

    The Yak was only ever deployed on Kiev class ships operationally which are large anti submarine carriers... their opportunity for using air to surface missiles was extremely limited...

    With the Kh-23 The Yak had to sacrifice one hard point for the guidance pod for the early Kh-23 but they also used the Kh-23M which was an upgraded model with Kh-25 components. Naturally the Yak had very limited capabilities but it was one up on the early GR Harriers which had no such ability. Even the earlier Yak-36M's could hit targets 10kms away with the Kh-23!

    The Yak was tested in Afghanistan in the light ground support role, where it failed terribly... dust was a problem...

    According to one of the pilots that tested the Yak in Afghanistan dust was not a big issue. The Yak's engines actually blew the sand away from the aircraft and the pilot could see the ground below perfectly well. The high altitude and the high temperatures was much more of a problem but this issue helped to speed up improvements on the aircraft engines. The four Yaks flew 107 sorties and did the job quite well. One of the problems they encountered was that the special metal and fiberglass runway for the Yaks failed big time and they then used the normal concrete runway. There is a documentary on it but you can read this very interesting story here >>
    https://www.allreadable.com/2ed05V0

    The Yak-141 had some potential, but it was never anywhere close to operational..

    Well we all know what happened in the 90's. Funding became a major issue for everyone in Russia including Mikoyan and Sukhoi. At that time Yak-41 had four prototypes (2 static) and it's development was well advanced. They even had more advanced versions planned like the Yak-43. It was a superb VTOL aircraft and could have used it's thrust vectoring capability to it's advantage when engaging conventional fighters.

    If things were a little different you would have seen the supersonic Yak-41's operational on the Kiev carriers - giving these carrier a much better air component.
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    Post  Lennox Sat Jan 08, 2022 3:16 am

    GarryB wrote:
    Current ones are way, way underpowered, which explained everything from mobility to black smoke). And the reason for that is mostly lack of funding. So if they have enough funding now, it would most likely go to the Kuznetsov than a new carrier.

    Half were replaced just before going to Syria, and the rest were replaced after it had been in Syria so it should be pretty good now.

    Not quite. The turbines with correct power output are to be installed in its ongoing upgrade, along with other stuff like automated landing system. Before going to Syria they replaced an old underpowered model with a new yet still underpowered one.

    GarryB wrote:

    A Varan type purely for launching UAVs... VSTOL ones, conventional take off ones, sea surface ones and submersible ones... would make sense... except they are already talking about one helicopter carrier and one UAV platform for the Ivan Rogov class... so four to be made with two UAV platforms and two helicopter landing ships... what do we need the Varan for again?


    I've always thought that the Ivan Rogov was both a helicopter carrier and UAV platform because it's an amphibious assault ship. The Varan can then be a more dedicated carrier to deploy air wings and heavy UAVs.
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    Post  GarryB Sat Jan 08, 2022 4:45 am

    If the picture was taken from the opposite side you would probably comment on how wide the fuselage is

    Not at all, the problem is not perspective... you can see the narrow width of the body of the aircraft... a little distorted by the fisheye lens, but the rear tail surfaces stick out to the width of the stub wings in their folded position which stick out quite a bit from the fuselage sides.

    Making the fuselage 1m wider and say 3 metres longer that ends in a ramp tail exit with side fins sticking out that can fold back in to the body of the helicopter would massively increase the internal cabin space of the platform and improve access and exit options without taking up a lot more space inside their hangars.

    However the fuselage is not the problem though - the undercarriage determines the actual width of the ship-born helicopter. The Helix sits quite wide at 3.8m whilst the Mi-38 width is 4.5m.

    It could have retractable outrigger gear that folds to a narrower wheel base when being moved into a hangar... for landing and takeoff it could extend outwards to provide extra stability.

    The country that produced the work of art that is the MiG-23s undercarriage could do it...

    South Africa used the Puma/Oryx helicopters extensively during the bush war and those big side doors on either side of the helicopter allowed troops to exit much quicker than the ramp door on the Super Frelon. The troops also had a great view of what was going on on the ground.

    But no view behind and no ability to drive light vehicles on board... and there only being two entrances and exits it of course would be slower than with three.

    Even the earlier Yak-36M's could hit targets 10kms away with the Kh-23!

    In theory that might have been possible, but in practise?

    There is a documentary on it but you can read this very interesting story here >>

    Thanks for that... seems very sympathetic to the Yak though...

    I would disagree with this comment:

    This machine proved itself as remarkable aircraft in British-Argentinean conflict for Falkland Islands. - No doubt that Harrier finished the Falklands. If there were no Harriers it's not quite obvious how this would end. - That's a fact and no one can do anything about it.

    Ironically if there was no Harrier the British would have done much better in the Falklands, because they would not have given up their full sized carriers with Phantoms and Buccaneers for those damn stupid little toy carriers...

    The Buccs would have been enormously effective against the airfields on the islands so no dangerous expensive and risky Vulcan missions, and the Phantom and more importantly decent AWACS platforms would mean they probably would have cleaned the skies of Argentine aircraft and created a much better air shield over the islands and probably would not have lost a single ship.

    The new model Sidewinders together with Skyflash missiles would have enabled the British fighters to operate much closer to the island and get to areas faster...

    If things were a little different you would have seen the supersonic Yak-41's operational on the Kiev carriers - giving these carrier a much better air component.

    Things were a little different... like it could land without crashing like one of the prototypes did which ruptured a large internal belly fuel tank which started a large fire...

    The main problem with VSTOLs is when you want them to be supersonic fighters... if you want them as short range quick reaction fighters then it makes sense on a carrier... you could launch them 8 at a time, but they have so many weaknesses and problems that make them bad for most jobs... they can't even just take off from anywhere which was their main selling point for a long time. They need concrete or pierced steel planking (PSP) pads for operational use, and for rolling takeoffs you need about 100-150m... which means a section of motorway... but then 250m would be enough to operate MiG-29s so why bother creating a brand new VSTOL fighter?

    The ships the VSTOL fighter suits best are small, but small carriers are less effective and shorter endurance vessels... they might be cheaper... but getting a pen and writing the time on your wrist is cheaper than watch... cheaper isn't always better... in fact in this case it is not a lot cheaper and not cheaper at all if you have to develop VSTOL fighters for it to work... you are going to lose a lot of them in normal use... some members here went apeshit over losing a MiG-29 and an Su-33... probably cost 60-70 million together in total price compared with the 120 million the F-35 the British lost recently... it is a conundrum.... is it better to lose 120 million dollar planes by crashing them, or does it cost more to have them all operational at 90K pounds per flight hour operational costs...

    There is nothing more amazing than seeing a supersonic jet just hovering in the air like the Yak-141 did... but its enormous 18 ton thrust engine damaged the runway at Farnborough when they flew it there... not to mention the 8 tons thrust of the two lift engines.

    Talk about efficiency a single fighter that has the equivalent of the two upgraded RD-33 engines in the MiG-35 (9 ton each)... all rolled in to one engine, but also the dead weight of two 4 ton thrust engines in the nose... the equivalent of the two engines in the Su-25 CAS aircraft just behind the cockpit that is only used during landing and takeoff and is dead weight the rest of the time.

    The Russian engineers are very clever, but even if they managed to make something that works... it would only be needed on a light carrier... their big carriers should not be carrying VSTOL fighters, they should be carrying navalised Su-57s... you ship based fighter should be the best you can manage... together with a smaller numbers fighter to maximised the numbers of aircraft that could be carried and improve close in defence.

    The Su-27 was their best fighter and the MiG-29 was a good point defence interceptor... not enough money to get what they wanted so they bought Su-33s only.

    The Yak-141 was an experiment that didn't produce anything useful.

    Not quite. The turbines with correct power output are to be installed in its ongoing upgrade, along with other stuff like automated landing system. Before going to Syria they replaced an old underpowered model with a new yet still underpowered one.

    Nothing like real combat experience to force the bean counters to spend the money on things that are important...

    I've always thought that the Ivan Rogov was both a helicopter carrier and UAV platform because it's an amphibious assault ship.

    The makers want to make different versions... the primary use is helicopter landing craft, but it carried a full Naval Infantry Brigade (I think)... about 1,000 Naval Infantry soldiers with their armoured vehicles and support equipment and landing platforms (Serna and hovercraft etc) and also helicopters for support. They were talking about a second carrier being optimised for Drones that does not carry all those troops, which means it might be loaded up with suicide drones of all sorts of different types as well as attack helos and perhaps recon equipment etc that would compliment a landing force using the other ship.

    In the interview the maker also talked about hospital ships and other functions too... but clearly interested in turning the two ship contract into a 6 or 8 ship contract... like any maker would.

    The Varan can then be a more dedicated carrier to deploy air wings and heavy UAVs.

    The difference is that the Varan would be another ship design, whereas the Ivan Rogov is already in production... the value of either would be in the number of different roles it could be used for and the Ivan Rogov class already seems to be being built for at least two of those functions... and they mentioned roll on roll off transporter and hospital ship as well.

    Varan is too small to be good at its primary role... its best chance would be to be cheap and as such the only place it would have any value would be based in Syria to operate in the Med, which means at most you would make two.... when you talk about modular multirole designs that concept really only pays off when you can make them in enormous numbers.

    If they made it a three hull cat design where the hulls were perfectly sized each to be also used as cruiser hulls at 20K ton each, then you could save money laying hulls because the hulls could be used for cruisers or Varan aircraft carriers with a two hull design, or a super Varan design with three or even five hulls at a 90K ton design...

    The point is that it is likely optimised for export to countries who can't afford full sized carriers, and also don't really need them because they wont be operating on the other side of the planet. A small group of air power like that would be useful for a smaller fleet in a regional confrontation against a smaller power, but certainly not anything big and serious and lasting months at a time.
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    Post  Backman Sat Jan 08, 2022 5:30 am

    Isos wrote:Carriers won't affect WW3 anyway. This design is good.

    Weapons onvoard are not that much needed since it will always be escorted.

    Few pantsir and Paket-NK is the minimum to have.

    The real weapon of carriers are the jets onboard. Many seem to foget that...

    I like the design. The only thing I don't like is the non nuclear power. If they already have a whole fleet of ice nuclear ice breakers, why build carriers with conventional power ? They already have a very good marine nuclear powerplant
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    Post  Mir Sun Jan 09, 2022 3:48 pm

    Not at all, the problem is not perspective... you can see the narrow width of the body of the aircraft... a little distorted by the fisheye lens, but the rear tail surfaces stick out to the width of the stub wings in their folded position which stick out quite a bit from the fuselage sides.

    Making the fuselage 1m wider and say 3 metres longer that ends in a ramp tail exit with side fins sticking out that can fold back in to the body of the helicopter would massively increase the internal cabin space of the platform and improve access and exit options without taking up a lot more space inside their hangars.

    These hangers are quite limited when it comes to space but let's see when they roll out the new ship-born helicopter. No point in speculating the same point over and over again with no real prototype in hand.
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    It could have retractable outrigger gear that folds to a narrower wheel base when being moved into a hangar... for landing and takeoff it could extend outwards to provide extra stability.

    The country that produced the work of art that is the MiG-23s undercarriage could do it...

    Retractable gear of any kind would add a lot of weight to the helicopter - something the designers are looking to avoid in official statements. The idea is to fit the helicopter with more powerful engines but also make it much lighter than the Ka-27 by using composites. Later Mi-24 versions have non retractable landing gear in order to just that - significantly reducing weight.

    But no view behind and no ability to drive light vehicles on board... and there only being two entrances and exits it of course would be slower than with three.

    The Mi-8 has one side door and a clam shell type rear door. Later versions do have a ramp. Same with the Mi-38. That gives them two options but from all evidence I've seen (but one promotional picture) Russians and Soviets seems to prefer using the side door for entrance and exit of troops - even in simulated combat situations. The rear clam shell door seems to be reserved for vehicles only. You are welcome to prove me wrong with some photographic evidence on the Mi-8 or even the old Mi-4.
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    Thanks for that... seems very sympathetic to the Yak though...

    Not really - he just tells it as it was - problems included.

    The Yak-141 was an experiment that didn't produce anything useful.

    Bollox! There was nothing experimental about the Yak-41 - it was set to replace the Yak-38's. The deck accident wasn't exactly great news for the Yaks but the Soviets ran out of money. I will post some more detail on the Yaks below.


    Last edited by Mir on Sun Jan 09, 2022 7:24 pm; edited 1 time in total
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    Post  Mir Sun Jan 09, 2022 7:00 pm

    Some interesting info on the Yaks >>

    In terms of flight range and combat radius, the Harrier was superior to the Soviet Yak-38, but the Yak had a much better thrust-to-weight ratio (1:1) than the Harriers which gave it a huge advantage in certain aspects.

    A very interesting aspect of the Yak was that in combining the operation of the three engines the pilot could make an accelerated start, both in vertical and horizontal flight. The Yaks could take off vertically from the Kiev carriers with an interval of 5-7 seconds, while the British could only lift 4 aircraft into the air per minute. Thus, in a minute 6-10 Yaks would have been in the air against 4 Harriers. Apparently, this and it's huge noise levels during takeoff,  is why the Yak was nicknamed "Mad Cucumber"! The low takeoff rates of British aircraft were associated with the design feature of starting the engine through the APU whilst the Soviet Yaks were launched from the ship's onboard power supply.

    In terms of the number of weapons carried , the comparison was not in favor of the Yak-38 with the birth of the Harrier II in the 90's. However the early Harrier could only carry two air-air missiles against the four carried by the Yak. The Yak was also able to use air to surface missiles - something the early Harrier could not do.  It also had two suspended GSH-23 gun pods, which increased the firepower of the aircraft. But the most important thing is that with a full combat load, the Yak-38 could take off vertically, which the Harrier was unable to do.  The Harrier needed a long run or a ski jump ramp in order to take off with a full load.

    Another significant advantage of the Yak was the unique SK-3M pilot rescue system, which allowed the pilot to be automatically ejected when things went pear shape.

    Since the introduction of the Sea Harrier FRS2 and the other Harrier II's it became clear that a replacement for the Yak-38M was urgently needed. Such an aircraft was the Yak-41 which became known as the Yak-41M and later the Yak-141. The Harrier II and the Yak-41 were both 4th generation aircraft and the first flight of the Yak-41 was made two years after the Harrier II in 1987.

    The Harrier II was a vastly improved version of the older generation Harrier, but the Yak-41 was a completely new development that used the same two-engine power layout from its predecessor. One R79V thrust vectoring engine was located in the rear fuselage and two RD-41 lifting engines were immediately behind the cockpit.

    The Yak-41 had a much more powerful avionics kit consisting of a pulse-Doppler radar , a laser rangefinder and electronic warfare equipment located in the wingtips and fuselage of the aircraft.

    The R79V-300 thrust vectoring engine became the first engine in the world that allowed the use of afterburner both in horizontal and vertical flight modes. Thanks to the unique design of the main engine, the Yak-41 became the second aircraft after the French experimental Dassault Mirage IIIV, VTOL flying at supersonic speed.

    The Yak-41's weapons systems  was also much more diverse and more powerful than the Yak-38M and even the Harrier II. It was created as an all-weather multi-role aircraft for the Air Force (Yak-43) and Navy aviation. The Yak-43 differed from the Yak-41 in that it had a shorter takeoff (with a run-up length of 120 meters) and had a longer combat radius. The Yak-43 was also a more stealthy design with internal weapons.

    Armament included the GSH-30-1 cannon, R-27, R-60, R-73 and R-77 air-to-air missiles and the Kh-25, Kh-31 and Kh-35 air-to-surface missiles on its four under wing hard points. The  GSH-23L could also be suspended in gun pods. The Yak could also be armed with 80-240 mm rockets and could carry 6 bombs of all types up to  500 kg. It was a true multi-role fighter.

    The Yak-41made its first flight In March 1987. Test flights from the airfield lasted from 1987 to 1991 and fully met the technical characteristics laid down by the designers. Unique flights were conducted, not only with vertical takeoff and landing, but also maneuvers in hover mode (hence the name given by NATO- " Freestyle "). During the tests, 12 world records were set on the Yak-41 for the rate of climb, maximum load and altitude of flight with cargo. Most importantly, these tests demonstrated complete superiority over the Harrier in all major aspects.

    Full-scale deck tests began on board the Baku/Admiral Gorshkov carrier when, two YAK-41 prototypes landed on an aircraft carrier on 26 September 1991. A few days later the first take-off was performed but it ended in a heavy crash on the landing approach. The pilot ejected safely. Accidents like these are not uncommon during development - the Harrier itself has a very long list of accidents throughout its career. Unfortunately the USSR dissolved and the Yak-41 became one of many programs that were terminated.

    Despite this the then renamed Yak-141 was displayed at the Farnborough-1992 exhibition in all its glory. This resulted in the Yakovlev OKB's participation in a joint project with Lockheed to develop the JSF (Joint Strike Fighter) program.

    This failed to save the Yakovlev OKB from economic collapse, but the Americans received full insight into the design developments and technologies of the Yak-41 vertical take-off and landing aircraft - and practically for free! Justice prevailed and they made a hash of the whole program - despite British participation. To this day the F-35 would be no match for the Yak-41 in sheer performance.  In fact the F-35 can't maintain supersonic speed for any length of time -  so even the Tu-95 can out fly it lol!

    The Yak-41 was not a fifth-generation aircraft, it was designed as a fourth-generation aircraft together with its contemporaries MiG-29 and Su-27. It was assumed that its next modification, the Yak-201, would become a fully fledged 5th generation aircraft.

    The design of the Yak-201 was based on the traditional twin-tail - but unlike its predecessors it would have only one power unit. The shape of the engine nozzle was a subject of contention and it was decided to create a round and a flat version.

    All weapons would have been located in the fuselage and it would have been a single seat fighter. Cruise speed at low altitude was estimated at 1250km/h and 1800 km/h at altitude. The practical ceiling of the aircraft would be 15,000 meters.

    Since 2017 rumours have surfaced that the Yakovlev OKB is planning the next generation VTOL fighter for the Russian Navy and it may well be based on the Yak-201. It looks a lot like the VTOL aircraft depicted on the pictures I posted of the Varan. We'll see?

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    Post  GarryB Mon Jan 10, 2022 5:10 am

    These hangers are quite limited when it comes to space but let's see when they roll out the new ship-born helicopter. No point in speculating the same point over and over again with no real prototype in hand.

    The last time it happened it was actually a few years before they realised the Ka-25 Hormone had been replaced by the Ka-27 Helix family... the look didn't change very much at all... the engines were much more powerful and the cabin got longer and became more volumnous... if that is a word.

    The point is that the Helix is not a bad aircraft, just making a new helicopter with a better shape with more internal space and perhaps an n tail like the Ka-226 design which allows a rear ramp door on some of the modular rear pods it can carry is all it really needs.

    Retractable gear of any kind would add a lot of weight to the helicopter - something the designers are looking to avoid in official statements.

    I mean retractable gear in the sense of foldable rotors. The gear only needs to stick out and form a wide ground base during landing and takeoffs for stability. Just like the blades need to be deployed and spinning when taking off, flying and also landing, but when putting it away in a hangar you can fold the blades and shift the widely spread position of the main gear closer to the body of the aircraft so it will fit into a smaller area that is a hangar.

    The idea is to fit the helicopter with more powerful engines but also make it much lighter than the Ka-27 by using composites.

    Giving it undercarriage that can spread out or fold inwards means better stability for take off and landing... which is critical on a ship, but also means it can operate from smaller hangars, which is important too. Worth a little extra weight... it might only need a pivot point near the top to move the wheels closer to the fuselage while on the ground.

    Later Mi-24 versions have non retractable landing gear in order to just that - significantly reducing weight.

    It was also because it was found that survivability improved when the wheels were deployed in heavy landings because it helped spread the impact to reduce injuries...

    Russians and Soviets seems to prefer using the side door for entrance and exit of troops - even in simulated combat situations.

    Mi-17s have doors on both sides and a rear ramp...

    Future Russian Aircraft Carriers and Deck Aviation. #2 - Page 33 Pic00110

    And the aircraft used by the CIA and Russian forces have doors on both sides and door gunners quite often too:

    CIA bird with what appears to be a gatling door gun in the side door...

    Future Russian Aircraft Carriers and Deck Aviation. #2 - Page 33 Cia210

    And a through view to show both side doors open at once...

    Future Russian Aircraft Carriers and Deck Aviation. #2 - Page 33 Afghan10

    (sorry for the size...)

    The rear clam shell door seems to be reserved for vehicles only. You are welcome to prove me wrong with some photographic evidence on the Mi-8 or even the old Mi-4.

    The clam shell door was used for vehicles... can you guess why they changed to a ramp door... for use in new armoured vehicles and Mi-17 helicopters?

    Not really - he just tells it as it was - problems included.

    I thought it was terribly generous... it seems to suggest the Yak-141 was hard done by, when it was probably a lucky escape from a terrible money pit that had no potential to ever get better than the already available and cheaper and safer MiG-29 family of aircraft.

    Bollox! There was nothing experimental about the Yak-41 - it was set to replace the Yak-38's.

    The Yak-38 could have been replaced by a Ka-52... in fact a Ka-52 would be orders of magnitude better than the Yak-38.

    The Yak-41 was never going to be better than a MiG-33.

    It was a dead end design.

    The Yaks could take off vertically from the Kiev carriers with an interval of 5-7 seconds, while the British could only lift 4 aircraft into the air per minute. Thus, in a minute 6-10 Yaks would have been in the air against 4 Harriers.

    Statistics bullshit is just bullshit... for it to be important the British carrier and the Soviet carrier would need to be sailing around with their eyes closed waiting for someone to say go to start launching planes.... and in that case the Yaks might get airborne faster than the Harriers, but considering they operate in the real world any enemy force of aircraft will be detected at significant ranges and a suitable number of fighters will be sent up to intercept them... in that case it is not launch rate, but carrier capacity that matters, and there were vastly more Harriers made and used than Forgers.

    The low takeoff rates of British aircraft were associated with the design feature of starting the engine through the APU whilst the Soviet Yaks were launched from the ship's onboard power supply.

    Unless there were power points at each takeoff spot on their carrier, that would mean the Yaks needed engine starting trucks to come out and start their engines for them.... there are not many aircraft in this day and age that don't have their own APU even just so they can run diagnostics and start systems that take longer to start up like navigation system gyros... Having built in APUs is an advantage... not a disadvantage... and launching from the ramp greatly improved takeoff weight performance so the rate of launch for the Yaks would be compromised by the fact that they likely couldn't take off vertically with full fuel and weapons... which might mean getting up faster but reduced flight range...

    The Yak was also able to use air to surface missiles - something the early Harrier could not do.  

    All the Yaks only ever had four wing pylons.... Harriers had rather more...

    Another significant advantage of the Yak was the unique SK-3M pilot rescue system, which allowed the pilot to be automatically ejected when things went pear shape.

    Saved a lot of pilots but also crashed a lot of planes that might not have actually been in trouble... it had a fixed envelope setting and if an angle went slightly too far it would automatically eject the pilot.

    Since the introduction of the Sea Harrier FRS2 and the other Harrier II's it became clear that a replacement for the Yak-38M was urgently needed.

    Nahh, it was when they realised the Yak-38M with a more powerful engine improved acceleration and load potential but reduced range and endurance without increasing top speed which was mach limited, they realised further improvements in the current aircraft and current engine was a dead end.

    The Yak-41 had a much more powerful avionics kit consisting of a pulse-Doppler radar , a laser rangefinder and electronic warfare equipment located in the wingtips and fuselage of the aircraft.

    It got things the MiG-29 had had for quite some time.

    Huge step up from the Yak-38M, but not so much better than the MiG-33 to make all the time and money seem worth it.

    The R79V-300 thrust vectoring engine became the first engine in the world that allowed the use of afterburner both in horizontal and vertical flight modes. Thanks to the unique design of the main engine, the Yak-41 became the second aircraft after the French experimental Dassault Mirage IIIV, VTOL flying at supersonic speed.

    It was the vectoring engine nozzle for the 18 ton thrust main engine that works in full AB even at 95 degree deflection that the Americans bought the technology for for the F-35.

    The Yak-41's weapons systems  was also much more diverse and more powerful than the Yak-38M and even the Harrier II. It was created as an all-weather multi-role aircraft for the Air Force (Yak-43) and Navy aviation. The Yak-43 differed from the Yak-41 in that it had a shorter takeoff (with a run-up length of 120 meters) and had a longer combat radius. The Yak-43 was also a more stealthy design with internal weapons.

    The Yak-141 never achieved operational status and most of its stats were purely statistical. The Yak-43 was never more than a paper project.

    In fact in the 1990s the Yak-43 was a more stealthy design but it used a thrust vectored version of the 25 ton thrust NK-32 from the Blackjack bomber.

    It was mostly considered crazy talk even then.


    Armament included the GSH-30-1 cannon, R-27, R-60, R-73 and R-77 air-to-air missiles and the Kh-25, Kh-31 and Kh-35 air-to-surface missiles on its four under wing hard points.

    Four wing points was very limiting and the design of the lift engines meant belly pylons were simply not an option.

    It was a true multi-role fighter.

    Its armament capacity was no better than the MiG-21 which at least could carry an external fuel tank on the centreline position.

    Most importantly, these tests demonstrated complete superiority over the Harrier in all major aspects.

    Except the most important things like getting into serial production and numbers actually produced.

    The Russian Navy had experimented with the little Kiev carriers and then went to the bigger Kuznetsov and then the even bigger Ulyanovsk... the trend was bigger carriers with more capacity, so VSTOL fighters were no longer needed... an unnecessary complication to the design.

    A few days later the first take-off was performed but it ended in a heavy crash on the landing approach. The pilot ejected safely. Accidents like these are not uncommon during development

    Such accidents are not uncommon, but this one was serious. It wasn't just the rear main engine that operated in full AB during landing and takeoff, the front two lift jet engines operated in full AB too so as the aircraft came in for a landing and was about 15-20m in the air as it slowed down to the hover all the hot exhaust gas from all three engines was being blasted into the deck and it rose up around the aircraft and got sucked in to the air intakes... jet engines work by sucking in cold oxygen rich air... compressing it which heats it up and then injecting fuel in the combustion chamber which burns and generates thrust and then further fuel is injected in the exhaust to burn in the after burner... the obvious problem is that when hot air that has most of the oxygen replaced with carbon monoxide because it has had aviation fuel burned to get it this hot, then the fuel in the combustion chamber and the afterburner doens't burn because there is no free oxygen and you get an engine stall... and from 10-15 metres... well it ripped open the belly of the aircraft which contained a large fuel tank which spilled burning fuel all over the deck and burned the aircraft...

    The solutions are not obvious and would require radical changes in the design like a main engine powered lift fan so the air blown at the front is still oxygen rich and wont cause an engine stall, but lift fans are too big and bulky and ruin the coke bottle shape of the supersonic design making its aerodynamics really bad...

    Perhaps electric jet engines for lift engines?

    If they blow cold oxygen rich air you could have the in the wing roots able to rotate 90 degrees so you can use them in forward flight, so they are not dead weight most of the flight... have forward swept wings and put them on the wing tips and you could vector their thrust in normal flight giving you amazing manouver potential...


    Despite this the then renamed Yak-141 was displayed at the Farnborough-1992 exhibition in all its glory. This resulted in the Yakovlev OKB's participation in a joint project with Lockheed to develop the JSF (Joint Strike Fighter) program.

    They were looking for some foreign company to throw them some development money and they got some...

    Since 2017 rumours have surfaced that the Yakovlev OKB is planning the next generation VTOL fighter for the Russian Navy and it may well be based on the Yak-201. It looks a lot like the VTOL aircraft depicted on the pictures I posted of the Varan. We'll see?

    In MAKS2021 we saw MiGs twin engined carrier based aircraft model, and a land based cheap light 5th gen fighter... no mention of a Yak equivalent AFAIK so don't hold your breath.

    If anyone can make a decent VSTOL fighter it would be Russia, but I think there will need to be a few breakthroughs in exotic materials and engine technologies before that happens.

    There is an improved R79 engine with 22 tons of thrust...  Honestly I think using that and modifying it like the British Pegasus engine with cold oxygen rich air used for front lift nozzles with fully articulated nozzles so the wing tip and tail and nose high pressure puffer systems for stability in the hover become unnecessary... would greatly simplify the design.

    Expecting supersonic speed was always a problem with VSTOLs... I would say on Russian carriers they will use these VSTOLs for close point defence so rapid launch and good payload are important... top speed not so much... have Su-57s and MiG-35s or their replacements on the carriers for long range and numbers respectively, while the VSTOLs could be a couple on helicopter carriers or something.

    Electric engines could be another step forward too.. the key is for the front lift engines to not burn oxygen and be able to be rotated to be useable in forward flight so they are not dead weight for the entire trip.
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    Post  Mir Mon Jan 10, 2022 8:37 am

    Mi-17s have doors on both sides and a rear ramp...

    Sorry yes you're quite right - most later versions of the Mi-8 has the sliding door on the right as well and the ramp at the rear. The evidence I was asking for is on how the Russians military use the Mi-8 helicopter - not the CIA Wink

    AND yes they can use the rear ramp or clam doors for entry and exit but as I've said they seem to reserve the rear entry/exit for vehicles and favour the side door for troops.

    Future Russian Aircraft Carriers and Deck Aviation. #2 - Page 33 Mi8-3c10
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    I mean retractable gear in the sense of foldable rotors. The gear only needs to stick out and form a wide ground base during landing and takeoffs for stability. Just like the blades need to be deployed and spinning when taking off, flying and also landing, but when putting it away in a hangar you can fold the blades and shift the widely spread position of the main gear closer to the body of the aircraft so it will fit into a smaller area that is a hangar.

    I know what you mean. Complicated retractable gear like that would make it heavier and the other problem is that it would make recovering the helicopter in heavy seas a lot more difficult and even dangerous by narrowing the wheelbase.

    The Yak-38 could have been replaced by a Ka-52... in fact a Ka-52 would be orders of magnitude better than the Yak-38.
    The Yak-41 was never going to be better than a MiG-33. It was a dead end design.

    The Ka-52 is a brilliant attack helicopter but it could never replace a fighter jet, but if you think it can you should rather compare it to later generation aircraft. It would struggle against something like the Su-30SM in every aspect. Lockheed didn't think that the Yak's design was a "dead end" - neither did the Yakolev OKB. The Mig-33 designation was fictional and briefly used for marketing the Mig-29M (export version) at the time, which like the Yak failed to get any orders. Must have been a dog like the Yak!  Laughing  

    Statistics bullshit is just bullshit... for it to be important the British carrier and the Soviet carrier would need to be sailing around with their eyes closed waiting for someone to say go to start launching planes.... and in that case the Yaks might get airborne faster than the Harriers, but considering they operate in the real world any enemy force of aircraft will be detected at significant ranges and a suitable number of fighters will be sent up to intercept them... in that case it is not launch rate, but carrier capacity that matters, and there were vastly more Harriers made and used than Forgers.

    In total around 650 Harriers were produced - a large number of those for the US Marines (AV-8A/B) against 231 Yaks. In reality the Brits had less than 30 Sea Harriers and less than 50 Harrier GR's operational in the mid to late 80's! About 20 of those served in OCU units, which is quite telling on how "easy" it was to fly! Pitted against the British carrier those "BS statistics" don't look so bad as the Invincible normally only had 12 Sea Harriers on board - same as the Kiev. That launch rate will make a huge difference if the scenario required it!  The Yaks did not require a start up truck...

    It is pretty clear that you are not a fan of the Yakolev OKB and any of the VTOL Yaks they produced! I myself have said I'm not the greatest fan of VTOL aircraft but I am now beginning to look forward to the next gen Yak VTOL which will most likely be no better than dog shit!  Laughing
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    Post  lancelot Mon Jan 10, 2022 10:43 am

    An attack helicopter has a very slim chance of being able to down a jet fighter. It lacks the speed and altitude. Any air to air missiles it can carry will have way worse kinematic capabilities. The only way to down a fighter is if it is flying at a similar low level and you shoot an air to air missile head on against it as it flies against you. If that fighter is flying away from you the speed of the jet fighter will be enough to easily evade your air to air missiles.

    An attack helicopter does, however, have great potential as an anti-shipping platform against other ships which lack the proper air defenses. Or for air supporting an amphibious land assault.

    The Yak is really limited in terms of range and payload because of the extra weight of the engines and the VTOL. VTOL jet aircraft in general are terrible. Hugely expensive, crash prone, won't work outside of prepared pads, extremely limited payload, I could continue. They would be better off with the MiG-29K than that thing. A MiG-29K can carry almost twice the payload. It also does not require a) designing and building two new engine types not used anywhere else b) designing a whole new airframe.

    The Yak-130 and MC-21 are fine aircraft. The Yak-9 was arguably the best WW2 piston fighter aircraft.

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    Post  Mir Mon Jan 10, 2022 11:01 am

    The comparison is between the Harriers and the Yaks - but just out of interest the Yak-41 was not much slower than the Mig-29K and actually had significantly better range than the Mig-29K but you're right the Yak had a more limited payload.
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    Post  lancelot Mon Jan 10, 2022 11:58 am

    Oh. That. They both sucked. Laughing
    Sorry. Embarassed

    Only aircraft which killed more pilots was probably the F-104 Starfighter.

    Don't get me wrong it is an amazing achievement to make a VTOL jet aircraft. But then again so would be making a working ornithopter. Does not mean I would want to fly in one.

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    Post  Isos Mon Jan 10, 2022 1:25 pm

    lancelot wrote:Oh. That. They both sucked. Laughing
    Sorry. Embarassed

    Only aircraft which killed more pilots was probably the F-104 Starfighter.

    Don't get me wrong it is an amazing achievement to make a VTOL jet aircraft. But then again so would be making a working ornithopter. Does not mean I would want to fly in one.

    Indians have lost hundreds of pilots because of mig-21 crashes.
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    Post  lancelot Mon Jan 10, 2022 1:59 pm

    Isos wrote:Indians have lost hundreds of pilots because of mig-21 crashes.

    Well yeah but the MiG-21 is an earlier generation jet like the F-104. Engine technology back then was seriously unreliable and things like fly by wire did not exist. India should have replaced that death crate already.

    The Harrier and Yak are like over a decade younger than either of those aircraft. Heck the Yak is a 1970s aircraft. The Yak-38 had the same introduction date as the F-15. You have like a decade or nearly that between the Harrier, Yak-38, and Harrier II. The initial Harrier had no radar and neither did the Yak-38. That was a serious limitation even back in the 1970s.

    While the original Harrier and Yak-38 were contemporaries because they had different introduction rates they of course had different technological levels. So I think a comparison is kind of unfair either way.

    VTOL aircraft have way more failure modes so they will always be less reliable. Just look at failure rates for helicopters. They also require more extensive pilot training to be effective.

    The F-35B is kind of impressive as a VTOL aircraft really. But it really pales against the F-35C. And an optimized airframe not designed with the F-35B's limitations would be even better. The speed for example is a major downgrade over previous generation aircraft. If they think they can cover that with stealth I have a bridge to sell you.

    The Yak-141 probably had a smaller frontal aspect and variable intake ramps so it is faster. It also helps it doesn't melt when traveling too fast like the F-35B either.

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    Post  Podlodka77 Mon Jan 10, 2022 2:26 pm

    Too much money for something not so necessary.
    Aircraft carriers were not used against country that has technologically approximately the same capabilities or in some cases even better capabilities since World war 2. I see these ships only as prestige and valuable units against countries with downgraded military power.  

    US has 11 nuclear powered aircraft carriers and France has one. Twoo more CODAG powered carriers are in the service of Royal Navy. Italy has Cavour and Treste but i dont see any anymosity towards Russia from Italia.
    And thats why i think that is better fro Russia to spend money on additional or more Su-57 regiments and Su-75 (in the near future), more multipurpose submarines, proposed MiG-41, hypersonic missiles, Tupolev family of bombers, and ABM's, than to build an aircraft carrier. OK, those ships could be more valuable in more ice free Pacific ocean than in the Arctic and in the service of Northern fleet.  
    I have more "fear" from a huge number of Arleigh Burkes + Ticonderogas than from those carriers.
    But OK, the US Navy will deccomission seven Ticonderoga class cruisers this year and that is 854 missiles in total for seven ships.
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    Post  Mir Mon Jan 10, 2022 2:44 pm

    You also have F-35 capable carriers from the US Marines, Spain, Australia, South Korea, Japan and perhaps even Turkey! All of them (f-35 incl)will go down well with a Tsirkon/Khinzal/Kalibr-M cocktail mixture! Laughing
    Heck a coupe of Oniks/Kh32's would probably do the trick! Same story with those dreaded Burkes. The only real naval threat would be their submarines.

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    Post  lancelot Mon Jan 10, 2022 2:49 pm

    We have to think about the scenarios a carrier would be useful. This would mostly be something like a Syrian or Libyan intervention.
    In both cases there was a focus on air to ground capability larger than in traditional Soviet carrier doctrine.
    You also had potentially hostile forces with their own airpower in there so a robust air to air capability was required.

    I think a large carrier with a naval Su-57 would be the most viable. You would have combat over potentially unfriendly territory and extra engine redundancy would help.

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    Post  Podlodka77 Mon Jan 10, 2022 2:59 pm

    Mir wrote:You also have F-35 capable carriers from Spain, Australia, South Korea and Japan. All of them (f-35 incl)will go down well with a Tsirkon/Khinzal/Kalibr-M cocktail mixture! Laughing
    Heck a coupe of Oniks/Kh32's would probably do the trick! Same story with those dreaded Burkes. The only real naval threat would be their submarines.

    Russia has no intensions to invade any european or african country; Serbia, Somalia, Algeria, Norway, etc.
    How many fully rearmed Su-57 regiments could be equipped compared to the price of JUST one nuclear aircraft carrier..
    I think its better not to built that ships just for the sake of prestige. China maybe needs those carriers for measuring the penis size with Japan, for Taiwan, and India. They (China) also compete with the United States, but Russia doesnt need those ships just because someone from the west would say "Oh, you don have aircraft carriers ? What a shame !"...
    Give us more YASENS (i really really love those subs) and enlarged variant of 22350M frigates/destroyers, thats all ! Wink
    And yes, Russia needs in the future a worthy replacement for 1164 Atlant and 1144 Orlan classes of cruisers.

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