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T50内置4枚1400磅导弹,F22只内置两枚1000磅导弹
送交者: 力挽狂澜 2015年09月16日20:58:31 于 [军事天地] 发送悄悄话
Walking the static display line at the MAKS air show in Moscow is a reunion of sorts, with aircraft designs that I used to spend a lot of time thinking about. There’s the Tupolev Tu-22M, touted by U.S. Air Force intelligence as a B-1 equivalent, which involved a well-to-the-right-of-Genghis-Khan senior officer dictating that the bomber had 20 tons more fuel than its physical size allowed. Here in the historical section is that masterpiece in welded steel, the MiG-25, that some assessed as a dogfighter. Those were two lessons in the analytical trap of “mirror imaging.” The most widely mirror-imaged system at MAKS was the Sukhoi T-50, which far too many people still see as an F-22 analog. This idea began to look out of touch with reality two years ago, when Tactical Missiles Corp. (TMC) showed images of the big (1,400-lb.) Kh-58UShKE anti-radar missile inside the fighter’s fuselage bays. The T-50 can carry four weapons of that size internally versus two 1,000-lb.-class bombs on the F-22. This year, TMC unveiled three new or modified T-50-size weapons: the Grom winged bomb, with or without rocket boost; the Kh-59MK2 stealth cruise missile; and a Kh-50UShKE variant with terminal infrared guidance. Nothing new was said about air-to-air missiles, and what has been shown so far indicates that the T-50’s air-combat armament comprises straightforward updates of in-service weapons. This suggests almost conclusively that the T-50 is designed to kick the door down against surface targets (including ships) as much as to defeat fighters and threaten high-value air targets. As such, the fact there may not be a lot of T-50s around in the near future is less comforting than it might be. Another major difference, confirmed by defense electronics conglomerate Kret (Concern Radio-Electronic Technology), is that the T-50 has a full-featured active, electronic warfare system; the philosophy behind the F-22 and F-35 was that stealth made this unnecessary. But together with the T-50’s speed and agility (and the absence of Western equivalents to Russian long-range surface-to-air missiles) it has apparently allowed the beam and rear-aspect radar cross-section specification to be relaxed. That saves weight, and also makes it easier to use Sukhoi’s elegant thrust-vectoring system. The nozzles move only in one axis—but by separating the engines, rotating the vectoring planes inward, and blending aerodynamic and thrust-vector controls, Sukhoi obtains three-axis vectoring. You can also mirror-image strategy and tactics, however, and that makes it hard to evaluate systems that do not have analogs. Ground-based, anti-air electronic warfare mostly does not exist in the West, where armies leave the air threat to the air force and air forces spend their money on fighters. And if something does radiate rather than doing manly blowing-things-up stuff, the U.S. Army in particular is not interested, unless it can fit on a Humvee. Kret’s new Krasukha-1 jammer, designed to blind the E-3 airborne warning and control system (AWACS) is therefore unique. It is a formidable piece of electrical engineering, with a massive generator driven by its carrier vehicle’s 300-kW engine, a cluster of feed waveguides that resemble a tree-trunk, heavy-duty cooling fans on the back of the radio-frequency power unit and a 9-ft. dish at the business end of an offset-Cassegrain antenna system (see photo). The West doesn’t know how well it works because we have nothing remotely like it. If we did, the Air Force might not let anyone shoot it at a real AWACS and risk finding out the hard way that the Krasukha-1 will fry the target’s chips when it is turned up to 11, which the Russians say can be done. But as I pointed out a few weeks ago, lopsided air-warfare victories since the early 1990s have had a factor in common: “Generally, one side has had the support of airborne warning and control, signals intelligence and communications jamming assets and the other has had none of these.” Diminish the usefulness of AWACS—not only for warning but identification—and there is a problem. Another no-Western-analog MAKS debutante was the Avtobaza-M passive detection system, the largest and most modern of its type. Such systems have major strengths (range, precision and silence) and major weaknesses—robust emissions control (Emcon) gives them little to pick up. But in a world where visionaries see every platform as an intelligence collector and as an intelligence consumer, Emcon becomes harder. An unmanned air vehicle that is not transmitting may be silent, but it is also of no damn use. The West has already started to wake up to a gap in defensive jamming. It may be time to take another look at the big EW picture, and although it may not be pleasant, it is better than looking in the mirror.
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