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Thread: F/A-18 Super Hornet

  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phoenix10 View Post
    You missed my point completely. Of course speed in very important. My point was that kinematics are not everything. The Foxbat had a higher speed than the F-15 but I don't think any informed person would consider the F-15 "substandard" to the Foxbat because of that (I am not saying that you were implying such, just making a point).
    To add to this: don't forget the israelis shotdown multiple sirian recon Mig-25, a mission profile that required a delicate interception. As with many other situations, the pilot matters as much as (or, some times, even more...) than the machine. That iraqi pilot (probably a combat veteran of the Iraq/Iran war) is a great example of this: he used his plane's strenghts to the max, winning a fight vs a supposedly superior adversary.

    As for the F-18, as much as I loved the Tomcat, I have to admit the USN seems to have gotten a good deal. Unlike the F-14, the F-18 is a true multirole plane, which simplifies logistics and tactics imensely, specially considering how (relatively) few planes you can cram into a carrier.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cr9527 View Post
    So what of the russian long range bvr missiles? Are they adequate to kill maneuvering targets?
    If you're refering to the Novator K-100/KS–172, this was designed as an AWACS killer. Not much manouvering there...

  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jimmy View Post
    The AIM-54 was designed to kill big, non-maneuvering targets. It's a solution for a problem that doesn't really exist anymore,
    While the threat of Soviet bomber regiments has receded, it has been replaced with AWACS, tankers, and longer ranged anti-ship missiles requiring a long range missile.

    much like the F-14's interceptor role. The Shornet doesn't NEED to be as awesome an interceptor/point defender as the Tomcat, so the degradation of that capability isn't that significant.
    The number of fast strike capable platforms like the Su-24, SU-30 etc is going up and with them the number of long range super sonic anti-ship missiles is going up as well. We need a fast fighter able to get to an intercept point asap so that it can nail incoming bombers and also any supersonic anti-ship missiles it fired.


    The multirole capability it brings to the fight overcomes that shorfall, just like it overcomes the minor loss of air-to-ground capability the Navy gave up with the retirement of the Intruder.
    agreed

  4. #34
    Senior Contributor JA Boomer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by YellowFever View Post
    The fact of the matter is, the Shornet is not the interceptor the Tomcat is/was, nor is it the bomb truck the Intruder is/was.

    Does the latest technology compensate for some of it's short-fallings? Sure. But I'd like to see what the Tomcat would have turned out with the latest gizmo package the Shornet has.

    For fleet defense, you bet that speed advantage definitely matters.

    I can understand the Navy wanting to cut cost and dumping the F-14 and A-6, and having one platform for both offense and defense does make alot of sense but I can't help but feel we've lost some punch in both areas with the advant of the Shornet.

    As someone mentioned here before, the Shornet is the Honda Accord of fighters: Not exceedingly good in any area but good enough to get the job done for now.

    It is what it is...
    Excellent post, pretty much along the lines of my thoughts on the subject.

    For a somewhat dated but relevent article on the subject of F-14D vs F/A-18E/F read this:

    Battle of the Superfighters | Article Titles and Pages | Flight Journal Magazine

    For a decent summary of some of the F-14 Tomcat upgrade proposals that were considered read this:

    Aerospaceweb.org | Ask Us - F-14 Tomcat Replacement Proposals

    The F-14D Tomcat and F/A-18E/F are both great airplanes. The Super Hornet can never fulfill the fleet interception mission that the Tomcat was designed for, and the Tomcat is even better equipped to handle the long range strike/interdiction missions (a gap left due to the retirement of the A-6 Intruder) because of their superior range and payload. The Super Hornet has all of the latest gizmos and gadgets that make it a fantastic platform able to fulfill a wide area of missions.

    It's hard to compare the Tomcat to the Super Hornet, as the latter has all of the avionics of a 4.5 generation fighters that the Tomcat would have received had it been further upgraded from the F-14D configuration. But in my opinion, nothing will have touch the mighty F-14 Tomcat!

    You also have to keep in mind that the decision to end to service life of the Tomcat wasn't completely an operational decision. Sec Def Cheney cancelling the F-14D program while it was under budget and ahead of schedule pretty much put the nail in the coffin, ensuring F-14 operating costs would escalate throughout the 90's and 2000's to the point where the USN had no option but to retire the aircraft.

  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phoenix10 View Post
    It's nice to see that someone else here feels the SH has value. Not that it matters what any of use think anyway.
    It has plenty of value, but it still has the same problems as every jack-of-all-trades. And it's the ugliest fighter the US has used since the post-Korean War era.

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jimmy View Post
    It has plenty of value, but it still has the same problems as every jack-of-all-trades. And it's the ugliest fighter the US has used since the post-Korean War era.
    Hey.. I find the Super hornet quite sexy, including from the front.

  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jimmy View Post
    It has plenty of value, but it still has the same problems as every jack-of-all-trades. And it's the ugliest fighter the US has used since the post-Korean War era.
    It has its angles but overall I have to agree.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jimmy View Post
    It has plenty of value, but it still has the same problems as every jack-of-all-trades. And it's the ugliest fighter the US has used since the post-Korean War era.
    Oh come on, the superbug got nothing on the elelphant nose F4.

  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Officer of Engineers View Post
    Oh come on, the superbug got nothing on the elelphant nose F4.
    Haha, yes, agreed.
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    Quote Originally Posted by zraver View Post
    That article has one major flaw, the RAAF does not have the 120D
    The Indonesian Airforce does not have nearly enough SU-XXs to run 16 simultaneous CAPs around Java either, so it is obviously a hypothetical future scenario based on possible acquisitions by both airforces.
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  11. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aussiegunner View Post
    The Indonesian Airforce does not have nearly enough SU-XXs to run 16 simultaneous CAPs around Java either, so it is obviously a hypothetical future scenario based on possible acquisitions by both airforces.
    Exactly. After all it calls out 2012. The author is simply providing an example of why the SH will remain relevant against a variety of emerging threats.
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  12. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aussiegunner View Post
    The Indonesian Airforce does not have nearly enough SU-XXs to run 16 simultaneous CAPs around Java either, so it is obviously a hypothetical future scenario based on possible acquisitions by both airforces.
    I should have said 4 CAPs totalling 16 aircraft, but they don't even have enough for that.
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  13. #43
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    I cannot speak to personal experience with the Super Hornet, but the original hornet had some very impressive capabilities in the air to air mission. I can only imagine that this new bug has improved even more. I believe it is perfectly capable of effective fleet defense, on par with the F-14, which I always felt (sorry admirers) to be quite overrated.

    Missile "maximum range" is, to me, one of the most overemphasized aspects, and gets debated to death on the internet, as if missile "A", with 50nm range, is somehow automatically better than missile "B", with a 46nm range. Max range is based upon an enormous number of factors, with the most important being the target aspect, and then altitude. For example, an AIM-9 might have an effective tail-chase range for a mach 1.2 target of 3 to 4 nm, but that is at 40,000 feet. Drop the engagement to the deck, and that range shrinks dramatically by perhaps a factor of 4.

    Any target maneuvering also shrinks effective missile max range enormously. It is simply one number among dozens relative to missile performance.

    Re: the Mig-25 "hi-fast flyer" intercept... years ago, the MiG-25 was the platform of choice for AWACS attack, and now of course the MiG-31 has supplanted it. A target at 65,000 feet and mach 2.5 is an exceptionally challenging intercept, and at the first sign of an inbound Foxbat by AWACS, F-15C's on CAP had to begin a specialized flight profile designed to "loft" the AIM-7M. We practiced this in the simulator often, and if the profile is not flown correctly, the missile will be kinematically defeated.

    How the F-22 and the AIM-120 changes the "hi-fast flyer" challenge, I am not sure, but I would guess the vastly superior kinematic performance of the AIM-120 vs the AIM-7 makes the job much easier.

  14. #44
    Idiot Mode [ON] OFF Senior Contributor YellowFever's Avatar
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    "I cannot speak to personal experience with the Super Hornet, but the original hornet had some very impressive capabilities in the air to air mission. I can only imagine that this new bug has improved even more. I believe it is perfectly capable of effective fleet defense, on par with the F-14, which I always felt (sorry admirers) to be quite overrated. "

    Spoken like a true "Ego" Driver.

    Chogy, a question: What exactly is a "Wall of Eagles" and can you briefly explain it's concept for me?

    Sorry for the digression.
    Last edited by YellowFever; 05 Oct 10, at 17:13.

  15. #45
    Senior Contributor JA Boomer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chogy View Post
    I cannot speak to personal experience with the Super Hornet, but the original hornet had some very impressive capabilities in the air to air mission. I can only imagine that this new bug has improved even more. I believe it is perfectly capable of effective fleet defense, on par with the F-14, which I always felt (sorry admirers) to be quite overrated.
    The F-14 Tomcat's greater range, faster speed, greater radar range, and greater missile range over the F/A-18A/C Hornet and F/A-18E/F Super Hornet ensured that incoming threats were engaged much farther away from the carrier then can be accomplished today. That alone reduced the threat to the carrier and her escorts and made the F-14 a better fleet defense fighter.

    I'm not saying the Super Hornet can't accomplish this mission, as its AESA radar and ability to carry a substantial number of AMRAAM's gives it the capability to engage a good number of targets, but the fact is, these engagments are happening closer to the carrier.
    Last edited by JA Boomer; 05 Oct 10, at 17:59.

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