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Author Topic: The best Fighters?
bod
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posted 07-29-2000 08:45 AM     Profile for bod   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Just read an interresting article in the current edition of the Norwegian aviation magazine "Flynytt" about the selection process for the new fighter to replace aging (almost antique) F-5's and a number of lost F-16A's in the Norwegian Air Force. About 20-30 fighters in total. The article was written by major Paulsen, former squadron leader and chief of the aircraft-tactical/operational part of the analysis. The analysis took place from 93-96.

The specifications wanted were excellent air to air capabilities as number one (a must), then good air to ground capabilities along with suitability for the specific and rather extreme Norwegian climate and topography and adaptation to the existing infrastructure. In adition the general economical/industrial factors had to be good.

The candidates were:
Dassault Rafale C
Eurofighter Typhoon
F-16C Block 50
F/A-18C Hornet
JAS 39-Gripen

Since the most important factor where the Air to Air capabilities, that part of the analysis was done first along with industrial/economical analysis/negotiations that went on all the time. The BVR capabilities (radar, weapons etc) was most important along with the ability to disengage at will and avoid incoming weapons. Such an airplane have to have a good radar, low radar signature, good range and acceleration/speed and excellent manouverability as well as top avionics in general (F-22 ). (The two single most important factors was considered to be radar and maneuverability; radar to detect/follow the enemy and maneuverability for avoidance of enemy missiles and disengaging capability, NOT to dogfight!!!) Anyway, the result of that analysis was that all the candidates except the JAS-39 Gripen went further to the air to ground analysis. The article mention no detailes of the specific planes.

For the Air to Ground analysis the major factor was the ability to deliver "smart" weapons in an hostile environment (under Norwegian weather and topological conditions). Alongside the maintainance/logistic analysis was done. All the four planes could do the air to ground role satisfactory even though they had very different loading abilities. However, the result was that two fighters were chosen for further analysis due to better overall combination of air to ground, maintainance and operational fitness. Those planes were the Eurofighter Typhoon and the F-16C Block 50.

But, the end of the story is that no planes will be purchased The reasons are mainly due to cutbacks. A new fleet of fighters consisting of Joint Strike Fighter type planes is planed in 2012, and the rest of the F16A's are upgraded to MLU standard in the mean time, if they are not already.

What i find interesting is that the F-16C was considered a better overall plane than both the Rafale, F/A 18 and the Gripen (that the Eurofighter was good came as no surprise). The other ting i find amusing is the planning of purchasing JSF *TYPE* planes. I mean, are there any other options than Boeing/LMTAS?


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bob671
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posted 07-29-2000 09:07 AM     Profile for bob671   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Remember that there will be a number of different models of the JSF, maybe they just meant that they were considering one of the versions of the JSF...?
Posts: 263 | From: Canberra, Australia | Registered: Jun 2000  |  IP: Logged
LeadHead
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posted 07-30-2000 02:56 PM     Profile for LeadHead   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote

Those bastards!!!

We eat their caviar every damn morning, drive with their oil to our work and they won't consider the Gripen???

Seriously, what can the Falcon do that the Gripen cannot?

The only thing I can think of would be the ability to deliver LGBs. - The SAF doesn't have LGBs. However I can't see how it would take too much modification to make it plink just fine...

I've only seen Gripens carrying a single Maverick on each pylon. However, I'm not sure if that's the G. version in which case the same would be true for the F-16 as well.

What else besides being compatible with existing service equipment already present in the RnAF is in favour of the Viper?

Ok, if you look at figures, the F-16 has a slightly longer range, a much heavier max payload with one more pylon on each wing to go with. But how does this transfer to combat capability versus the much better avionics and tactical systems of the Gripen? What about turn rate/radius? Size?

As earlier stated, the JAS-39 makes the F-16 look huge. - When standing on the platform, you'd almost have to stack another Gripen fuselage on top of one to make it as high as the F-16 (overstated, yeah but not too much).

Seriously, I need your help 'cause I can't think of anything else that the F-16 does better except possibly, looking "cooler" on the ground with all the ordinance loaded.

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Posts: 775 | From: PiteŚ, Norrbotten, Sweden. | Registered: Sep 1999  |  IP: Logged
TWalt
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posted 07-31-2000 05:54 AM     Profile for TWalt   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by LeadHead:

Seriously, what can the Falcon do that the Gripen cannot?

What else besides being compatible with existing service equipment already present in the RnAF is in favour of the Viper?

Ok, if you look at figures, the F-16 has a slightly longer range, a much heavier max payload with one more pylon on each wing to go with.

[/B]


Larger payload means less sorties per given target. If you can carry 4 smart weapons vice 2, you've doubled the efficiency of the aircraft in AG. Also with the support equipment already there, huge savings are built in to the F-16 choice. Of course the Typhoon offers first rate turn and acceleration, a higher AA missile loadout, and more modern sensors. At that point it's a pure cost assesment. Can you afford the $75-80 million Typhoon or is it more economical to maintain a fleet of $30 million F-16C Blk 50?? I don't see how a small air force could overlook at having twice the aircraft for their dollars.


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bob671
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posted 07-31-2000 08:06 AM     Profile for bob671   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
TWalt:

$30 million is a bit optimistic for the F-16 Block 50. The F-16 Block 50s that Greece only recently ordered cost them $42 million each.


Posts: 263 | From: Canberra, Australia | Registered: Jun 2000  |  IP: Logged
Div
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posted 07-31-2000 10:57 AM     Profile for Div   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
IIRC, the Litening was recently cleared for the Grippens (for the SAF order), so LGBs should not be a problem.
Posts: 75 | From: Canada | Registered: Jul 2000  |  IP: Logged
TWalt
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posted 07-31-2000 11:13 AM     Profile for TWalt   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
Bob671,
You're probably right. I don't follow the Air Force birds too closely but yeah, $42 mil sounds reasonable depending on equipment selected. You have to keep in mind that each export country can elect specific gear (ECM, FLIR, etc) which greatly effects price. Also those export contracts often include support items that do not necessarily reflect the unit price accurately.

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LeadHead
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posted 07-31-2000 02:28 PM     Profile for LeadHead   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
So, how much for a JAS-39?

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Posts: 775 | From: PiteŚ, Norrbotten, Sweden. | Registered: Sep 1999  |  IP: Logged
2
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posted 07-31-2000 02:55 PM       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
the best fighter is ali or joe louise.
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Skoonj
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posted 07-31-2000 03:20 PM     Profile for Skoonj   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
If you called him Joe Louise, you'd find out just how good a fighter he was!

Skoonj

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Excelsior, Fathead!
--Jean Shepherd



Posts: 541 | From: Naples, Florida, United States | Registered: Sep 1999  |  IP: Logged
Rosco
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posted 07-31-2000 03:50 PM     Profile for Rosco   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
The best fighter is undoubtably Mike Tyson, his awesome performance in such memorable battles as Tyson KO 1 Givens and Tyson TKO 1 Motorist should leave no doubt who the real champ is.

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"And if you don't like it, eat a gun"


Posts: 984 | From: Hazzard County | Registered: Jan 2000  |  IP: Logged
Envelope
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posted 07-31-2000 04:33 PM     Profile for Envelope   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message   Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote
LeadHead, I think maybe the reason the F-16 looks so big is because the air intake is underneath the pilot and the nose wheel is underneath that. It tends to stack things up a bit.

I would say that weight is probably a better indication of size. That corrected, maybe, by wing area.


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