Boeing and Saab are making a fighter that beats the best Russian SU-35 and would be ten times cheaper to operate than the F-35
Turning, and carrying a gun, remains as important as it has ever been. Most missiles miss in combat and the fighter aircraft will go on to the merge. Assuming that pilot skill is equal, a 2° per second advantage in sustained turn rate will enable the more agile fighter to dominate the engagement. A high instantaneous turn rate is vital in being able to dodge the air-to-air missiles in the first place. The aircraft on the upper right quadrant of the graph will have a higher survival rate. The ones on the lower left quadrant will produce more widows.
The Gripen E has a U.S.-made engine, the GE F414, which is also the engine of the F-18 Super Hornet. The Swedish Air Force is buying its Gripen Es for $43 million per copy, less than one third of the price of the F-35. Its operating cost per hour is less than a tenth of that of the F-35’s.
It is designed to carry more weapons further, and to track multiple threats using the latest type of radar.
Weapons include guided glide bombs, long-range air-to-air missiles and heavy anti-ship armaments.
It also has a 27 mm Mauser BK27 gun, which can be used in air-to-surface attacks against land and sea targets.
Like others in the range, the Gripen E has a delta wing and fly-by-wire flight avionics.
But unlike some others in the line, it has a greater fuel capacity, 20 per cent more thrust, more pylons, in-flight refuelling capability and increased take-off weight.
It has a 15.2 meter (50ft) long body has a wingspan of 8.6 metres (28ft) which allows it to manage a take-off weight of 16,500 kg (36.376lb).
It can reach Mach 2 (1,522 mph, 2,450 km/h) at high altitude with a turnaround time between missions of just ten minutes.
Combat radius: 800 km (497 mi, 432 nmi)
Ferry range: 3,200 km (1,983 mi) with drop tanks
The aircraft’s sensors include an Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar, Infra-Red Search and Track (IRST), Electronic Warfare (EW) suite and data link technology.
The latest version of the Gripen fighter jet was unveiled in May 2016 by Swedish aircraft maker, Saab. Boeing is a partner in the aircraft. The Gripen E prototype 39-8 ‘Smart Fighter’, the aircraft is aimed at markets not yet cleared to buy the troubled Lockheed Martin F-35 Joint Strike Fighter.
The E fighter, the sixth variant in the Gripen family, is slightly bigger than previous versions, has a stronger engine and updated radar systems.
Stealth is very expensive and Russia and China are shifting to radar that can detect stealth
Shaping provides 90 percent of the stealth of the invisibility cloak of a stealth aircraft with the remaining 10 percent coming from the RAM coating. The operational doctrine of the F-22 is based on the F-22 flying around without its radar on and not making any other electronic emissions either. At the same time it is vacuuming up the electronic emissions of enemy aircraft, triangulating their position and then pouncing at a time of its choosing. The world has moved on from that. Stealth, as practiced by the F-22 and F-35, is optimized on radar in the X band from 7.0 to 11.2 gigahertz. Detection in other parts of the electromagnetic spectrum has improved a lot over the last twenty years. Chief of these is infrared search and track (IRST) which enables an F-35 to be detected from its engine exhaust from over 60 miles away. The latest iteration of the Su-27 Flanker family, the Su-35, has IRST and L band radar on its wings. L band and lower frequency radars can see stealthy aircraft over 100 miles away. So an Su-35 can see a F-35 well before the F-35 can detect it. Stealth, as an end in itself, has outlived its usefulness, and maintaining that RAM coating is killing the budget for no good reason.
SOURCES – Daily Caller, Daily M