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AmirPatriot

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Other than radar, Kowsar-I platform has no other means of tracking a target so how it will track a target and provide data to a UCAV for attack?
It would likely work the other way around, UAVs providing Kowsar with information on targets to attack. The data transmission capabilities of Kowsar could still be held in reserve in case it receives a targeting pod in future, or there are plans to control drones from the air.
The data packets of a tracked mobile ground target is not different from aerial target. What matters is the fact that the channel can handle real time radar track data transfer and is Double Duplex (two way exchange). Aerial target only moves more faster but is easier to handle because:

- No Surface/ground clutter
- No terrain hiding advantage

Once tracked, an aerial target has no counter-strategy other than to resort to ECM/Jamming the tracking device.
Fighters use datalinks in BVR combat to gain SA (Situational Awareness). This is as much a defensive tool as it is an offensive one, perhaps more the former than the latter - very useful for defending airspace. This is why I say their use would differ significantly from that of ground targets, which pose much less of a threat to fighters than aerial targets - unless they are SAMs, which is a whole other topic (RWR is mainly used in that case).

For the same reasons above, the information required of a ground target is significantly different, which is why I say technical aspects would come into play. For example, most older datalinks have no or very basic functions for ground targets. Such capability is only in the latest systems.
the radars were kept off. How did they look for targets then during border CAPS? just radio operator was Cueing them ?
CAP = Combat Air Patrol
A patrol of a designated area. In peacetime, the radar does not need to be on all the time. Cueing via radio operators is sufficient.
Having additional MFD's has nothing to do with TDL. Installation of DL includes incorporation of an antenna and an added connection to the processing unit of the radar. The same screen which shows aircraft's self searched-tracked targets shows the data received targets too.
F14A already have datalink, Just Iranian F14 came without it integrated,any way there is not need for cockpit ugrade or any Change, to install datalink...expecually for aircraft as F14,that already have it but came without it instale
You are both mostly right. However the F-14A is a very old aircraft without significant use of digital electronics and interfaces. The fact that the cockpit shows no signs of upgrades (in ANY sense, not even the HUD or simple instruments) tells me that the upgrade has not been particularly extensive. It would be non-feasible/non-trivial to mate a modern digital datalink system with those old systems. The F-14A was designed to work with Link-4. It wasn't until the F-14D (a very significant upgrade in electronics, just look at the cockpits) that Link-16 was added.

Note how past attempts to non-American weapons onto Iran's F-14A such as R-73 and R-27 have failed, whereas efforts to fit for example, Indian AAMs onto Su-30s have succeeded. It's because 2000s electronics are a lot easier to adapt to each other than 60s/70s electronics.
That makes no sense. Why do you need datalink between Fighter-UCAV if you already have information of the "waypoint or stationary target" ? whichever vehicle has ammunition can go there on its own and attack the target without needing any data from another vehicle.
The idea is that an unarmed reconnaissance UAV - which are much more numerous than UCAVs - would find a target, and then feed that information to the nearest aircraft carrying weapons. The aircraft would then launch weapons on the coordinates of a stationary target or vector towards the target to engage it with bombs or other closer-range munitions.
It is not known whether the 5U15K-11 datalink designed for networking the A-50 AWACS and MiG-31 has been adapted to the Su-27/30, or whether a unique equivalent design is used.
Quote from Kopp. He has not ruled out A-50 networking with early flankers. Hence my point there is not sufficient information.
There is not a single example where Russian 4th generation combat planes have ever received any local upgrade by their clients. Indians
Aside from the obvious Chinese example, India has done so much with their Flankers. They've integrated their own weapons into them, have had domestic and foreign upgrades on them for HMDs and MFDs. And from the point of manufacture their Su-30s were customised with French and Israeli equipment installed instead of Russian equipment. When you want to make a big order, the supplier isn't going to put obstacles in your way.

I am not going to discuss the other claims you made such as those on the limitations of the Irbis' capability, which are way out of proportion considering the capabilities of that system.
 

drmeson

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It would likely work the other way around, UAVs providing Kowsar with information on targets to attack. The data transmission capabilities of Kowsar could still be held in reserve in case it receives a targeting pod in future, or there are plans to control drones from the air.

I am afraid that's not true if we go by the head of IAIO's words. It would have been true if he would have pointed out that the data link is just one way. He did not say that. In fact, he is very specifically saying that it's a two-way system i.e. One of the two vehicles tracks and transfers data to another and the other fires the weapon. He never said it's like only Kowsar tracks and gives it to UCAVS or vice versa. I would trust that he very well knows the difference between Single Duplex or Double Duplex transfer of information. Like I said before, this is head of IAIO, a Brig general with high education.

Fighters use datalinks in BVR combat to gain SA (Situational Awareness). This is as much a defensive tool as it is an offensive one, perhaps more the former than the latter - very useful for defending airspace. This is why I say their use would differ significantly from that of ground targets, which pose much less of a threat to fighters than aerial targets - unless they are SAMs, which is a whole other topic (RWR is mainly used in that case).

For the same reasons above, the information required of a ground target is significantly different, which is why I say technical aspects would come into play. For example, most older datalinks have no or very basic functions for ground targets. Such capability is only in the latest systems.

Any fighter with a Search and Track radar with SAR capabilities, does not need any external pod to track a surface target (mobile or stationary). Yes its a bonus if you add EO/IR track capabilities to a fighter but without them a multimode radar with SAR capability can still do a very good job of tracking ground targets. The radar they showed in HESA facilities upon Kowsar's unvieling and in Dezful airshow is a exact replica of Grifo-346 (Shape of antenna, T/R modules, track range etc all match) which has 1m resolution bearing SAR capability (equivalent to to F-16) and this is Kowsar's only way of tracking a ground target. The SDB-1 repica they showed on its pylons is also going to be fired using this SAR track info from radar.

This shows that the DL can handle Real Time Radar Data.

For the same reasons above, the information required of a ground target is significantly different, which is why I say technical aspects would come into play. For example, most older datalinks have no or very basic functions for ground targets. Such capability is only in the latest systems.

Surface targets need more data size because of background Terrain+Clutter while aerial targets do not have that. If ground target imagery is involved than it would need even more larger data size. TDL that Khajeh Fard is talking about can hold for Real time Radar data from Fighter(SAR)<----->UCAV(SAR/EO/IR), it will also hold for Fighter(TWS,SAR)<----->Fighter(TWS,SAR). Will need work for sure but its not some mountainous task that cant happen in Iran.

A patrol of a designated area. In peacetime, the radar does not need to be on all the time. Cueing via radio operators is sufficient.

Cueing on the radio can not substitute radar information. If Quick Reaction Alert (QRA) or CAP dedicated fighters have turned off their radars, this by no means implies that they are doing it because someone is radioing them from HQ. That is just illogical. At best cueing is about rudimentary mission guidance during intercept. Radar being turned off means they had a better alternative to their own radars.

You are both mostly right. However the F-14A is a very old aircraft without significant use of digital electronics and interfaces. The fact that the cockpit shows no signs of upgrades (in ANY sense, not even the HUD or simple instruments) tells me that the upgrade has not been particularly extensive. It would be non-feasible/non-trivial to mate a modern digital datalink system with those old systems. The F-14A was designed to work with Link-4. It wasn't until the F-14D (a very significant upgrade in electronics, just look at the cockpits) that Link-16 was added.

Again, cockpit upgradation or having shiny MFD's have nothing to do with the installation of Datalink. It only needs a T/R antenna and a plugin into the Processing unit of AWG-9 which will show its own Search-track targets and also the data received on the same old screen. You need no new MFD for that.

F-14AM's known upgrades are as follows:

(a) Thorough overhaul of airframe with 843 locally built parts
(b) New improved hydraulic and pneumatic system
(c) Complete overhaul of TF30-P414 Turbofans
(e) New Navigation and mission control system
(d) AWG-9 receiving lighter newly built parts, digitalization of signals, modern processors
(e) Fakour-90 LR-BVR Integration

By 2018 there were 8 x F-14AM's. I have not researched how many have received upgrades in last 5 years. Could be 7-10 more I guess.

Note how past attempts to non-American weapons onto Iran's F-14A such as R-73 and R-27 have failed, whereas efforts to fit for example, Indian AAMs onto Su-30s have succeeded. It's because 2000s electronics are a lot easier to adapt to each other than 60s/70s electronics.

It had nothing to do with era of electronics. R-73 was not pursued on F-14 because of the simple reason that IRIAF's F-14A do not have IRST to track heat signature of target unlike the MIG-29. R-73 would had to use its own tracker which reduces range and renders the All-aspect advantage of R-73 useless.

R-27R1 made little sense as well because its an SARH missile with bad record. Why risk an F-14A to stay in the hot zone to guide this missile while the same F-14 can fire AIM-54 or now Fakour-90 at much larger range? Besides there is another more important reason, IRIAF barely has a stock of 130-140 R-27R1 that are now 30+ years old. Its like not even enough for fleet of 23 x MIG-29 9.12. The Project was abandoned in favor of Fakour-90 which has much longer range with far better electronics and ECM.

The idea is that an unarmed reconnaissance UAV - which are much more numerous than UCAVs - would find a target, and then feed that information to the nearest aircraft carrying weapons. The aircraft would then launch weapons on the coordinates of a stationary target or vector towards the target to engage it with bombs or other closer-range munitions.

Khajeh Fard did not even remotely hinted towards use of one way/half duplex datalink between Fighter-UAV. He pointed towards a two way Tactical Datalink of Fighter-UCAV both of which can track targets and attack them.

Quote from Kopp. He has not ruled out A-50 networking with early flankers. Hence my point there is not sufficient information.

By the time Dr. Carlo wrote this article (10-12 years ago?) TKS-2 TDL was barely 6-7 years old upgrade on SU-30 and was isolated system to Flankers only. He is hoping in the article that MIG-31Bm and A-50 might adapt to Flankers TDL to gain universal DLing in future but have seen that?

The point i was making by posting Dr. Carlo's article was:

- The Flankers never had any inherent TDL
- The ones they got some 20 years ago was an Upgrade.
- The TDL was isolated to Flanker family only, not even working with MIG-31BM or A-50 who used their own isolated systems.

Aside from the obvious Chinese example, India has done so much with their Flankers. They've integrated their own weapons into them, have had domestic and foreign upgrades on them for HMDs and MFDs. And from the point of manufacture their Su-30s were customised with French and Israeli equipment installed instead of Russian equipment. When you want to make a big order, the supplier isn't going to put obstacles in your way.

Look behind the smoke screen and you will find Indians still paying 62 Million for USD/CKD kits of SU-30MK to Russia for "domestic production". Rosoboronexport of Russia (Defence export ministry) is even a partner in Indian local upgradation program of SU-30MKI including new Turbofans (~5 Billion USD) .... "Money should reach Moscow"

https://www.financialexpress.com/defence/russia-to-supply-more-ckd-kits-for-sukhoi-30mki/2582410/
https://militarywatchmagazine.com/article/india-s-su-30mki-costs-almost-twice-as-much-as-russia-s-new-su-30sm-here-s-why.
https://www.defensemirror.com/news/32069/India_Allocates__9_8B_for_Corvettes__Su_30MKI_Engines

Iran can also pull an "India" here and pay Russia some 20-25 Million USD per MIG-29 to carry out MLU and local upgrades on the dying and obsolete fleet. Russians as always will use front companies in Belgrade, Sofia, Minsk etc and spare parts, systems will start arriving in Iran. Iranian problem is internal though, country does not want an AF.

I am not going to discuss the other claims you made such as those on the limitations of the Irbis' capability, which are way out of proportion considering the capabilities of that system.

This is their own video, target barely got tracked at ~100 KM. Some Russian users defended this by saying that the target had an RCS of 0.6 m2 ... Even if we agree with them, then this means that SU-35 can track a F-18EF/Rafale/EF-2000 at 100 KM by that time they would all have unloaded their AIM-120C/D, Meteor BVRAAMs at 10-15 m2 RCS of the Flanker which they would track at 150+ KM.

 

TheImmortal

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AmirPatriot

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I am afraid that's not true if we go by the head of IAIO's words. It would have been true if he would have pointed out that the data link is just one way. He did not say that. In fact, he is very specifically saying that it's a two-way system i.e. One of the two vehicles tracks and transfers data to another and the other fires the weapon. He never said it's like only Kowsar tracks and gives it to UCAVS or vice versa. I would trust that he very well knows the difference between Single Duplex or Double Duplex transfer of information. Like I said before, this is head of IAIO, a Brig general with high education.
I didn't say it's a one-way system, I said in this application with reconnaissance UAVs the transmission would mainly be one-way. Doesn't mean the DL system itself isn't capable of two-way transfer.
Any fighter with a Search and Track radar with SAR capabilities, does not need any external pod to track a surface target (mobile or stationary). Yes its a bonus if you add EO/IR track capabilities to a fighter but without them a multimode radar with SAR capability can still do a very good job of tracking ground targets. The radar they showed in HESA facilities upon Kowsar's unvieling and in Dezful airshow is a exact replica of Grifo-346 (Shape of antenna, T/R modules, track range etc all match) which has 1m resolution bearing SAR capability (equivalent to to F-16) and this is Kowsar's only way of tracking a ground target. The SDB-1 repica they showed on its pylons is also going to be fired using this SAR track info from radar.

This shows that the DL can handle Real Time Radar Data.

Surface targets need more data size because of background Terrain+Clutter while aerial targets do not have that. If ground target imagery is involved than it would need even more larger data size. TDL that Khajeh Fard is talking about can hold for Real time Radar data from Fighter(SAR)<----->UCAV(SAR/EO/IR), it will also hold for Fighter(TWS,SAR)<----->Fighter(TWS,SAR). Will need work for sure but its not some mountainous task that cant happen in Iran.
This paragraph is based on far too much speculation/interpolation/assumptions compared to the short segment in the article. I'm not going to discuss it like this.
Cueing on the radio can not substitute radar information. If Quick Reaction Alert (QRA) or CAP dedicated fighters have turned off their radars, this by no means implies that they are doing it because someone is radioing them from HQ. That is just illogical. At best cueing is about rudimentary mission guidance during intercept. Radar being turned off means they had a better alternative to their own radars.
Radio calls are certainly not a good substitute for DL information on a display, but that's the level I think Iran's F-14s are at.
Again, cockpit upgradation or having shiny MFD's have nothing to do with the installation of Datalink. It only needs a T/R antenna and a plugin into the Processing unit of AWG-9 which will show its own Search-track targets and also the data received on the same old screen. You need no new MFD for that.

F-14AM's known upgrades are as follows:

(a) Thorough overhaul of airframe with 843 locally built parts
(b) New improved hydraulic and pneumatic system
(c) Complete overhaul of TF30-P414 Turbofans
(e) New Navigation and mission control system
(d) AWG-9 receiving lighter newly built parts, digitalization of signals, modern processors
(e) Fakour-90 LR-BVR Integration

By 2018 there were 8 x F-14AM's. I have not researched how many have received upgrades in last 5 years. Could be 7-10 more I guess.
Once again, there is no evidence or even claims that F-14AM has datalink apart from your interpretations of BT talking about CAPs. Also, I reiterate my opinion that the F-14AM upgrade is much less extensive than many people think.
It had nothing to do with era of electronics. R-73 was not pursued on F-14 because of the simple reason that IRIAF's F-14A do not have IRST to track heat signature of target unlike the MIG-29. R-73 would had to use its own tracker which reduces range and renders the All-aspect advantage of R-73 useless.

R-27R1 made little sense as well because its an SARH missile with bad record. Why risk an F-14A to stay in the hot zone to guide this missile while the same F-14 can fire AIM-54 or now Fakour-90 at much larger range? Besides there is another more important reason, IRIAF barely has a stock of 130-140 R-27R1 that are now 30+ years old. Its like not even enough for fleet of 23 x MIG-29 9.12. The Project was abandoned in favor of Fakour-90 which has much longer range with far better electronics and ECM.
IRIAF has such a small remaining stock of AIM-54s (and this is well documented) that you only see the Tomcats flying with AIM-7s and AIM-9s nowadays. That's why they developed the Fakour and are supposedly working on Maghsoud.

R-27 would probably still be an upgrade over the AIM-7.
By the time Dr. Carlo wrote this article (10-12 years ago?) TKS-2 TDL was barely 6-7 years old upgrade on SU-30 and was isolated system to Flankers only. He is hoping in the article that MIG-31Bm and A-50 might adapt to Flankers TDL to gain universal DLing in future but have seen that?

The point i was making by posting Dr. Carlo's article was:

- The Flankers never had any inherent TDL
- The ones they got some 20 years ago was an Upgrade.
- The TDL was isolated to Flanker family only, not even working with MIG-31BM or A-50 who used their own isolated systems.
We're going in circles now.
This is their own video, target barely got tracked at ~100 KM. Some Russian users defended this by saying that the target had an RCS of 0.6 m2 ... Even if we agree with them, then this means that SU-35 can track a F-18EF/Rafale/EF-2000 at 100 KM by that time they would all have unloaded their AIM-120C/D, Meteor BVRAAMs at 10-15 m2 RCS of the Flanker which they would track at 150+ KM.
That video is atrocious. There is no indication in what the change on symbology on the target is. It could be anything - IFF, launch authorisation, being "hooked" by the pilot... Can't make any conclusions based on that alone.

Btw, Su-35 is reported to have a reduced radar signature to 1-3m^2 using RAM coating in specific areas.
 

drmeson

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I didn't say it's a one-way system, I said in this application with reconnaissance UAVs the transmission would mainly be one-way. Doesn't mean the DL system itself isn't capable of two-way transfer.

Head of IAIO is describing a dual duplex Tactical Datalink between Fighter(s)-UCAV(s), nowhere he is saying it will be used one way from UAV/UCAV to Fighter. We can argue how it will be used but we were discussing the maximum capability of the system which in this case is a Non-Isolated, Real Time Radar Data Handling, Double Duplex Tactical Datalink for ground attack.

This paragraph is based on far too much speculation/interpolation/assumptions compared to the short segment in the article. I'm not going to discuss it like this.

Short verion then .... How would a Fighter with only a SAR capable radar track a ground target ? to send it to a UCAV.

Radio calls are certainly not a good substitute for DL information on a display, but that's the level I think Iran's F-14s are at.

That is not the point of discussion. You were showing picture of cockpit of F-14AM as evidence of no TDL. My point was that TDL installation has nothing to do with glass cockpit of MFDs installations as it will just require a T/R antenna and a module into the processing unit of AWG-9. Thats the point I was making.

IRIAF has such a small remaining stock of AIM-54s (and this is well documented) that you only see the Tomcats flying with AIM-7s and AIM-9s nowadays. That's why they developed the Fakour and are supposedly working on Maghsoud.

The point you made before was that F-14 cant accept new weapons, avionics upgradations which is why R-27 and R-73 failed on F-14 and I explained that they were reportedly failed not because of electronics but because R-73 needs IRST that F-14 lacks and R-27 is SARH and Iran barely has the stock for token fleet of MIG-29 9.12.

F-14 is recently seen with Fakour-90 (only F-14AM) and AIM-54+ (Babaei Missile Industries upgraded 30 units) as well. Reportedly (I can post link) they have 30 AIM-54+ deeply overhauled units and 100 Fakour-90 for Long range Engagement. AIM-7E2 is a Failure missile with bottom level kill probability.

We're going in circles now.

Your initial point => Flankers always had Datalink. My counter (Dr. Carlo Kopp report) => No they did not, TKS-2 came as an upgrade package for SU-30M after some ~24 years of birth of Flanker family and until ~2010 was an Isolated system to Flanker family.

Few extremely stupid Iranian posters here and on twitter (not you) think that SU-35 avionics are some Godly package while in reality they are hardly 4.0-4+ generation that you can get on a MIG-29M/MIG-35 easily for 1/3 the price. Or something that probably Iran itself can get at home if $$ is provided. I can discuss this more system by system. IRIAF problem is more deep as Tom Cooper explained recently in his article. Tangential discussion.

That video is atrocious. There is no indication in what the change on symbology on the target is. It could be anything - IFF, launch authorisation, being "hooked" by the pilot... Can't make any conclusions based on that alone.

You should see video again. The target is detected at ~260 KM (Left) and is tracked for the first time at 1:21 at around ~100 KM (Right).

1660229025199.png


This is not the only thing that aviation followers were astonished to find about weakness of IRBIS-E. Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) resolution of IRBIS-E according to the NIIP (its manufacturer) is 3 m, comparable to APG-70 radar from 1970-80s.

main-qimg-58db1e90605d412ac1328f792854994e-pjlq



SAR resolution is proportional to a radar’s bandwidth, which in turn is related to jamming-resistance (ECCMs) and LPI. In comparison, the Grifo-346 (replica that HESA has been parading around since 2017 at shows and unveilings) has a SAR capability of 1 m.

Western Avionics >>> Soviet/Russian Avionics

Btw, Su-35 is reported to have a reduced radar signature to 1-3m^2 using RAM coating in specific areas.

There is no evidence by any source for atrocious 1-3 m2 figures. If you have any actual evidence (company Document, some Ru-AF, PLAAF official etc) then I am open to changing my mind. Besides it makes no sense either. I will explain how:-

SU-35S = SU-27SM + avionics upgrade with no shape change on the airframe. There is mild change in the vertical stabilizer but nothing else. They are literally same thing.

1660239235674.png


1660239831243.png
1660239850785.png


Sukhoi itself published Flanker patent lists 10-15 m2 RCS of SU-27, 30 so how did the same airframe with avionics upgrade and re-branded as SU-35S suddenly became 1-3 m2 from 10-15 m2? that is just impossible wihtout radical restructuring of airframe.

There was a plan to put RAM on SU-35 some 15 years ago that involved Russian academy of sciences but we did not see any RAM application on it. https://www.fighter-planes.com/stealth2.htm Even if for the sake of argument we say that yes RAM were applied, they won't reduce a 10-15 m2 RCS to 1 m2 otherwise what is stopping the entire world to apply the same RAM to any small RCS 3rd generation fighter like Mirage V, F-5, MIG-21 to make them stealth? RAM coats do not reduce RCS like magic, they help but the actual RCS reduction comes from reshaping the airframe from attack aspects like frontal (engagement mode) which did not happen in the SU-35 case. So the figure of 1-3 m2 is a fanboi imagination that some people on internet have.

Western fighters always had low RCS compared to Soviet designs. According to USAF/USN released figures none of their fighters (except for F-15) exceeds 1-3 m2 RCS. This is USN historian/author Mr. Peter Grining's report on american fighter's recorded RCS values.

http://www.users.globalnet.co.uk/~dheb/2300/Articles/PG/PGSA.htm

I should clarify that I am not against SU-35 acquisition. I just feel that even to create a token force of 2-3 squadrons, rest of the IRIAF and domestic production of light fighter, upgradations all will cease to exist. And for 5 billions we will have a 30-40 x 10-15 m2 RCS bearing Bomb Trucks with ~100 km A2A IRBIS-E tracking range and 105 KM BVR engagement capability with export model R-77-1. Not to mention no local TOT. Same amount of money can do wonders for IRIAF from Russia otherwise if focus of purchase is kept on MIG-29M/35, upgradations of current bengin MIG fleet, new turbofans for Kowsar-II and BVR, all aspect WVR missiles.
 

BlessedKingOfLonging

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Head of IAIO is describing a dual duplex Tactical Datalink between Fighter(s)-UCAV(s), nowhere he is saying it will be used one way from UAV/UCAV to Fighter. We can argue how it will be used but we were discussing the maximum capability of the system which in this case is a Non-Isolated, Real Time Radar Data Handling, Double Duplex Tactical Datalink for ground attack.



Short verion then .... How would a Fighter with only a SAR capable radar track a ground target ? to send it to a UCAV.



That is not the point of discussion. You were showing picture of cockpit of F-14AM as evidence of no TDL. My point was that TDL installation has nothing to do with glass cockpit of MFDs installations as it will just require a T/R antenna and a module into the processing unit of AWG-9. Thats the point I was making.



The point you made before was that F-14 cant accept new weapons, avionics upgradations which is why R-27 and R-73 failed on F-14 and I explained that they were reportedly failed not because of electronics but because R-73 needs IRST that F-14 lacks and R-27 is SARH and Iran barely has the stock for token fleet of MIG-29 9.12.

F-14 is recently seen with Fakour-90 (only F-14AM) and AIM-54+ (Babaei Missile Industries upgraded 30 units) as well. Reportedly (I can post link) they have 30 AIM-54+ deeply overhauled units and 100 Fakour-90 for Long range Engagement. AIM-7E2 is a Failure missile with bottom level kill probability.



Your initial point => Flankers always had Datalink. My counter (Dr. Carlo Kopp report) => No they did not, TKS-2 came as an upgrade package for SU-30M after some ~24 years of birth of Flanker family and until ~2010 was an Isolated system to Flanker family.

Few extremely stupid Iranian posters here and on twitter (not you) think that SU-35 avionics are some Godly package while in reality they are hardly 4.0-4+ generation that you can get on a MIG-29M/MIG-35 easily for 1/3 the price. Or something that probably Iran itself can get at home if $$ is provided. I can discuss this more system by system. IRIAF problem is more deep as Tom Cooper explained recently in his article. Tangential discussion.



You should see video again. The target is detected at ~260 KM (Left) and is tracked for the first time at 1:21 at around ~100 KM (Right).

View attachment 869773

This is not the only thing that aviation followers were astonished to find about weakness of IRBIS-E. Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) resolution of IRBIS-E according to the NIIP (its manufacturer) is 3 m, comparable to APG-70 radar from 1970-80s.

main-qimg-58db1e90605d412ac1328f792854994e-pjlq



SAR resolution is proportional to a radar’s bandwidth, which in turn is related to jamming-resistance (ECCMs) and LPI. In comparison, the Grifo-346 (replica that HESA has been parading around since 2017 at shows and unveilings) has a SAR capability of 1 m.

Western Avionics >>> Soviet/Russian Avionics



There is no evidence by any source for atrocious 1-3 m2 figures. If you have any actual evidence (company Document, some Ru-AF, PLAAF official etc) then I am open to changing my mind. Besides it makes no sense either. I will explain how:-

SU-35S = SU-27SM + avionics upgrade with no shape change on the airframe. There is mild change in the vertical stabilizer but nothing else. They are literally same thing.

View attachment 869811

View attachment 869812 View attachment 869813

Sukhoi itself published Flanker patent lists 10-15 m2 RCS of SU-27, 30 so how did the same airframe with avionics upgrade and re-branded as SU-35S suddenly became 1-3 m2 from 10-15 m2? that is just impossible wihtout radical restructuring of airframe.

There was a plan to put RAM on SU-35 some 15 years ago that involved Russian academy of sciences but we did not see any RAM application on it. https://www.fighter-planes.com/stealth2.htm Even if for the sake of argument we say that yes RAM were applied, they won't reduce a 10-15 m2 RCS to 1 m2 otherwise what is stopping the entire world to apply the same RAM to any small RCS 3rd generation fighter like Mirage V, F-5, MIG-21 to make them stealth? RAM coats do not reduce RCS like magic, they help but the actual RCS reduction comes from reshaping the airframe from attack aspects like frontal (engagement mode) which did not happen in the SU-35 case. So the figure of 1-3 m2 is a fanboi imagination that some people on internet have.

Western fighters always had low RCS compared to Soviet designs. According to USAF/USN released figures none of their fighters (except for F-15) exceeds 1-3 m2 RCS. This is USN historian/author Mr. Peter Grining's report on american fighter's recorded RCS values.

http://www.users.globalnet.co.uk/~dheb/2300/Articles/PG/PGSA.htm

I should clarify that I am not against SU-35 acquisition. I just feel that even to create a token force of 2-3 squadrons, rest of the IRIAF and domestic production of light fighter, upgradations all will cease to exist. And for 5 billions we will have a 30-40 x 10-15 m2 RCS bearing Bomb Trucks with ~100 km A2A IRBIS-E tracking range and 105 KM BVR engagement capability with export model R-77-1. Not to mention no local TOT. Same amount of money can do wonders for IRIAF from Russia otherwise if focus of purchase is kept on MIG-29M/35, upgradations of current bengin MIG fleet, new turbofans for Kowsar-II and BVR, all aspect WVR missiles.
@drmeson I for my own part am not very in favour of a purchase of Su-35s but isn't it better to obtain 2 squadrons just to have a platform against which the performance of future indigenous aircraft can be measured in flag exercises and to be able to study the sleek Flanker airframe design?
 

Hack-Hook

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@drmeson I for my own part am not very in favour of a purchase of Su-35s but isn't it better to obtain 2 squadrons just to have a platform against which the performance of future indigenous aircraft can be measured in flag exercises and to be able to study the sleek Flanker airframe design?
not at all. you want to test the capabilities of future airplanes . test them against f-14 . those f14 probably are more capable , test their capabilities over Persian gulf against some neighboring country aircraft

and why you want to study flanker design . you are too interested in it go study Mig-29 that follow the same philosophy in design why spend several billion on such thing
 
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drmeson

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@drmeson I for my own part am not very in favour of a purchase of Su-35s but isn't it better to obtain 2 squadrons just to have a platform against which the performance of future indigenous aircraft can be measured in flag exercises and to be able to study the sleek Flanker airframe design?

IRIAF does not need any aggressor squadron.

SU-35S totally fits into IRIAF as heavy attack aircraft, a role that is currently filled by F-4E/D, SU-24M (some ~100 aircrafts). And also as an interceptor to replace MIG-29 9.12 (23 aircrafts). If IRIAF wants to get this aircrafts they will need 3 squadrons at Bushehr, Chabahar, Bandar Abbas. Then another 2 at Tehran and Tabriz. This will require some 60 aircrafts (replacing 123) fighters for 6 Billion USD.

SU-35S can't replace F-14A/AM which has a BVR package stretching to 150-200 KM. Russia does not export any other BVR missile than R-77-1 which has a range of ~105 KM. If leadership wants to build a brand new IRIAF they will have to spend some 13-14 Billion USD over 6-8 years to procure some 120 x SU-35S with 500 x R-77-1, 500 x R-74, PGMs, LACM, AShCM etc. Not gonna happen but thats what math adds up to.
 

BlessedKingOfLonging

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IRIAF does not need any aggressor squadron.

SU-35S totally fits into IRIAF as heavy attack aircraft, a role that is currently filled by F-4E/D, SU-24M (some ~100 aircrafts). And also as an interceptor to replace MIG-29 9.12 (23 aircrafts).
You don't see a role for it acting in the Syrian theater of war? Just curious - an aircraft like that could help assert dominance in the north and patrol airspace to deter enemy airstrikes, at the very least.
 

Hack-Hook

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You don't see a role for it acting in the Syrian theater of war? Just curious - an aircraft like that could help assert dominance in the north and patrol airspace to deter enemy airstrikes, at the very least.
in Syrian theater even mig-29 would have did the job , to be honest a su-25 probably would have done that job.
if at the time our UAVs, had strike capabilities and we didn't have problem with Sadid-1 . those were far more than enough to do the job in that scenario
 

TheImmortal

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if at the time our UAVs, had strike capabilities and we didn't have problem with Sadid-1 . those were far more than enough to do the job in that scenario

Our UAVs did have strike abilities. Iran released a video back in the day of drone strikes. Too lazy to find it. S-129 montage of strikes. It just wasn’t bragged about a lot.

The IRGC used the Shahed-129 for combat and surveillance missions throughout the Syrian civil war, beginning around 2014. The IRGC used the Shahed-129 to strike unidentified targets in Iraq and Syria—the first ever known Iranian drone strikes in wartime—sometime in 2015-16.


Also later in the war flying wing derivative drones did there attacks on ISIS in Deir Ez Zoe that one was well documented.


But a simple F-5/Saeqeh could have done wonders for CAS. But Iran felt that would lead to a no fly zone or Saudi Arabia joining the war.

Also even 50 drones isn’t going to do much when rebels+ terrorists + ISIS numbered in 100,000+ troops who are operating in asymmetrical warfare. Syrian airforce was running 100-200 sorties a day throughout the war. Didnt do much.
 

Hack-Hook

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Our UAVs did have strike abilities. Iran released a video back in the day of drone strikes. Too lazy to find it. S-129 montage of strikes. It just wasn’t bragged about a lot.
they had problem with their main weapon of Shahed-129 which was Sadid-1 and Qaem bomb was only good against stationary target.
The IRGC used the Shahed-129 for combat and surveillance missions throughout the Syrian civil war, beginning around 2014. The IRGC used the Shahed-129 to strike unidentified targets in Iraq and Syria—the first ever known Iranian drone strikes in wartime—sometime in 2015-16.
only qaem was working and it was not designed to work against moving targets
shahed-129 was mainly used for surveillance at the time
Also later in the war flying wing derivative drones did there attacks on ISIS in Deir Ez Zoe that one was well documented.
when ? 2018- 2019 russia entered into war in 2015
Also even 50 drones isn’t going to do much when rebels+ terrorists + ISIS numbered in 100,000+ troops who are operating in asymmetrical warfare. Syrian airforce was running 100-200 sorties a day throughout the war. Didnt do much.
that's the scenario that drones shine
 

TheImmortal

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they had problem with their main weapon of Shahed-129 which was Sadid-1 and Qaem bomb was only good against stationary target.

Go find the video. They were using it on rebels moving. Not stationary building. You know farsi you can find the video. I remember it vividly. I think it was one of the few official videos Iran ever published from Syrian operations.

only qaem was working and it was not designed to work against moving targets
shahed-129 was mainly used for surveillance at the time

If you find the video you will see the strikes it montage. And I believe Iran (or the official) claimed they did tens if not 100+ strikes with drones (going off memory forgive me). Video was released several years ago if that helps def 2019 or earlier showing drone strike operations during the war.

when ? 2018- 2019 russia entered into war in 2015

After 1st ISIS terrorist attack in Iran. Video shows them taking off from Iran. Internal weapons bay RQ-170 variant (don’t know what they call it these days).

that's the scenario that drones shine

No. Drones don’t shine against asymmetrical troops movements and when your enemy does human wave tactics and uses trucks as massive bombs. Or else US would have defeated Taliban years ago.

Against Asymmetrical and symmetrical warfare you need real time intelligence which Iran didn’t have in Syria. S-129 range due to ground control limitation wasnt amazing. And the number of airfields it could take off from was limited. (Most were captured early in the war and S-129 is slow prop drone....another reason Iran needs a heavy bomber drone that is jet powered and fast arrival to battlefield).

All of Ukraine’s intelligence targeting was provided by NATO or else they couldn’t find a tank if it was right in front of them.

I followed Syrian warfare hour by hour at some points. Iran simply lacked enough firepower back then. They were reluctant to bring heavy weaponary let alone air based weapons to Syria.

It would need F-4’s and F-5’s running 200-300 sorties a day alongside Syrian Airforce running same amount to turn around the tide. Only Russia could provide that sortie rate fast enough. Solemani knew the state of Iranian Air Force more than any of us on here. Plus risk of Saudi Arabia joining the air war or US doing no fly zone.

How long do you think IRIAF could run 200-300 sorties per day bombing campaign without its planes falling apart from wear and tear?

Asking a genuine question.
 

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