Don't take my word for it
This post first appeared on Russia Insider
WOW! What a fantastic virtual mock up of who will win if (God forbid!) US F-22 and Russian T-50 5th generation stealth fighters engage in an aerial battle! Breathtaking.
But there’s more to it than meets the eye. Not all weapons need to be used by stealth. Some, you don’t have to hide. Here’s the description of state of the art guided bombs that Russian T-50 will be armed with – straight from the mouth of their designer, as reported by Izvestia national daily newspaper correspondent Victor Litovkin.
A brand-new Russian fifth-generation jet fighter T-50 will be able to perform sensitive missions deep behind enemy lines. Givi Janjgava, President of the Ramenskoye Design Company that makes onboard equipment for combat and civil aviation:
— The T-50 is a multipurpose machine capable of performing tactical tasks besides air superiority - underlined the constructor. — Stealthiness allows it to penetrate deep into enemy territory and carry out precise strikes.
The ‘specific’ capabilities of the brand-new fighter were discovered by spotters – aviation lovers who keep watch for hours under any weather conditions at the fences of civil and combat airfields, taking pictures of take-offs and landings. The day before yesterday, a Mikhail Kuznetsov picture appeared on the Internet showing the T-50 fighter with the tail number ‘052’ taking off from the Gromov Flight Research field in the town of Zhukovsky near Moscow. There were guided bombs GBU-500 on the external loader, the same as used by our Aerospace Forces in Syria.
The fighter is undergoing another stage of aerodynamic testing in different flight modes, - said aviation expert Andrei Frolov, to Izvestia. It can carry missiles and bombs in its internal compartments, hence its stealthiness. But it can also accommodate an external load, precise air-to-air, air-to-surface, air-to-sea aerodynamic missiles, as well as guided bombs both of previous and next generations.
“The GBU-250 has a modular design and can be equipped with various types of high-precision guidance systems: satellite, laser. It was designed in response to US development of SDB (Small Diameter Bomb) guided bombs which equip its fifth-generation fighters, the F-22 and F-35. A guided bomb with a laser guidance head and a high-explosive fragmentation warhead is designed to attack unarmed equipment, railway junctions, warehouses and other enemy infrastructure. The bomb can be used either in isolation, or with salvo fire from the aircraft equipped with an onboard laser designator, and also with external backlighting of the targets from the ground.”
According to Janigava:
“On the one hand it’s foolish for a stealth aircraft to fly and ‘stand out’ on an enemy radar with its under-slung bombs. On the other hand - and this is a big question – does it make sense to sacrifice the combat capabilities of the aircraft for stealthiness, given that some jobs require stealthiness, while others need a big disposable load. That’s why stealth technology is not some kind of idol that designers of modern aviation techniques worship. Either the T-50, or F-22, or F-35 are able to accommodate external loads of missiles and bombs. Everything changes fast, and we need to act according to the situation. Secondly, sometimes we need to liquidate the target, even if not on the first try. This can always be done with cruise missiles.”
The Director General of the Tactical Missiles Corporation, Boris Obnosov, says the T-50 fighter will have six brand new missiles by 2017, and six more by 2020. Four models of inboard missiles are being tested.
“Only those types destined for the onboard of fighter T-50 are tested directly on it, - says Obnosov. For instance, the anti-radar missile Kh-58UShKE.”
The Kh-58UShKE missile was first demonstrated at the International Aviation and Space Show MAKS-2015 near Moscow. The fundamental difference from its predecessors is its target recognition and guidance, from inside the fighter. Another difference is that the missiles’ ‘square’ body fits more tightly inside the bomb door. Another T-50 innovation is the ‘gravity-powered missile’ Grom-2, designed on the basis of the Kh-38. In fact, it’s a missile with an inertial-satellite guidance system and is actually a bomb with a 250-kg payload that can be equipped with a high-explosive fragmentation, penetrating or a dispersing warhead.
This post first appeared on Russia Insider
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