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Air battle the 6th generation: the development of aircraft-complex future
Material posted: Publication date: 02-11-2017
Today, the media increasingly is the theme of the weapons of the next generation. For example, materials that work on the new aircraft of the 6th generation is already underway in several countries, including Russia, appear regularly in the press. The correspondent of the "Army standard" has compiled and analyzed these data as well as information from its own sources in the defense industry.

Today in our country we have clear principles and criteria for aircraft of the 6th generation is not yet officially announced. At first glance, it seems illogical even to start a conversation with the 6th generation, while the fighter of the 5th generation is not adopted. But in fact the logic in this, if it is known that the US and China have long started to work on this project. As for Russia, the data of this work are being very contradictory. A number of experts argues that the creation of the fighter to the 6th generation so far, everything is in the stage of ideas and formation tasks. Others contend that the work is in full swing, the first flying car would do in 2023-2025 years and will be completed by 2030. And some confidently declare that the fighter 6th generation will be called MiG-41 and he will appear after 2035.

A pack of the new generation

Assuming the scarce official information, provided by representatives of the defense industry, work on a new Russian fighter of the 6th generation really began. It is planned to create in two versions – manned and unmanned.

The unmanned machine will be a kind of a flying computer with powerful artificial intelligence, capable of performing the most complex tasks. On it lies a basic combat load, because the pilot still has limited physical capabilities. For unmanned vehicle such boundaries, as a person who doesn't exist, because it can perform the most breathtaking maneuvers without fear of overload, to achieve hypersonic speed and even out into near space.

As for tactics, that, according to experts, most effectively both versions of the aircraft will act in a group, or as they say in the pack, which will consist of manned and unmanned vehicles, where manned aircraft on the one or two pilots is the command post for three to four unmanned vehicles (approximately today, but only in the manned versions used the MiG-31BM).

And here is a very important time of the transfer of control from one flock to another aircraft. For example, one pilot performing combat missions with his group of devices, and the other is a thousand miles away. If one pack is thoroughly battered, the second can either take control of both groups for themselves or to share aircraft. Despite the fact that the machines have hypersonic speed and access to near-space, to make it succeed quickly.

In terms of specifications, the designers are going to use all the best that always had our Russian machine. First of all it concerns the agility and speed. It is planned that the maximum design speed will reach 5M, and cruising without afterburner, will not be below 2M.

However, when it comes to speed, experts start to argue, because I think that we should expect problems that have arisen in the last century the designers of the American high altitude bomber XB-70 "Valkyrie", conceived for the Strategic air command of the United States. This aircraft was to replace the B-52. His delivery was scheduled for 1963. But the main problem is "Valkyrie" was that while flying at a speed of 2.5–3M plane was heated up to 3000 degrees. Materials which could withstand such temperature, in the aircraft industry was not simple. As a result, the project was reduced to the status of research.

The same problem was experienced and the Soviet counterparts. For example, M-50 (NATO reporting – Bounder) was a Soviet supersonic strategic bomber Myasishchev, the only sample which took to the air in 1959. The development of the M-50 was the project of M-52. But before the flight tests of a full cycle, it never came. The ninth of July of 1961 he participated in the air parade in Tushino, and in the late 1970-ies were sent for scrap.

The same thing happened with the T-4 (item 100) – shock-reconnaissance bomber bomber, the Sukhoi design Bureau, who called the Russian "Valkyrie". The first prototype, it flew on 22 August 1972. It was intended for the destruction of carrier strike groups of the enemy and management of strategic intelligence, but after ten successful flights, the project was closed, and all the tools thrown on the creation of the Tu-160.

It is clear that to close all these projects, there were other reasons, including lobbying, however, the reason has always served as the claims of a technical nature.

Of course, the aircraft of the 6th generation is a machine that needs to be born in a different technological way. It will certainly be easier for those planes, which were discussed above, as it creates quite the other, more modern materials. They have to meet a number of requirements: thermal stability, mechanical strength, absorption of radiation by enemy radar, low values of thermal radiation... But it is precisely all this, experts say, and can become a stumbling block.

In recent years, in the field of creation of such materials in our country there has been progress, but still here we still lag far behind the West. But to solve the problems of high speeds, it is necessary to begin to solve the problem of creating super-strong materials that can resist high temperatures. And they require not only high thermal insulation of the cabin crew or the airframe, which at tremendous speeds is a powerful air friction, but for the engines: they need protection from the superheated air coming from the air intakes.

These are all questions that must be addressed at the intersection of various Sciences and technologies, experts say, and are now the main objective.

Super-maneuverable stealth

When you are creating a new generation of aircraft will also solve the problem of stealth, there are stealth technology, as the machine needs to withstand not only the existing air defense systems and radar, but also their future modifications.

In respect of "stealth" Russia and the United States has long adhered to a fundamentally different points of view. The Americans believed that in the creation of aircraft can sacrifice their maneuverability in favor of stealth. Russian designers thought otherwise.

At the time, General designer NPO "the Cradle-Saturn" Victor Chepkin said: "Together with different institutes, we carefully analyzed what "stealth" technology and the General principles of invisibility in battle and so on. And came to the conclusion that the exaggerated use of "stasovski" technology "stealth" for the sake of "stealth" is an extremely narrows the range of combat use of aircraft. But technology is very expensive".

This plane can not carry enough weapons as it is hidden in the fuselage (external suspension unmask the machine). It is limited in speed and range, and finally forced with great care to use radar, and sometimes it did not have, because the radar radiation gives even the invisible plane, as well as the beam of a flashlight in the dark.

But the main difference of our approach still is that, according to domestic experts, maneuverability in a modern military aircraft is becoming increasingly important. This contributes to a number of factors: the development of radar, the creation of new high-frequency radars, and also the loss of the US monopoly on sole possession of the new aircraft generations.

So, in the future, should consider the likelihood that in the air as opponents can meet two stealth fighter 6th generation, belonging to different countries. In this case, according to Russian experts, combat tactics back to the past, when maneuverability is not just important, but crucial.

Of course, stealth technology is also not standing still, and rapidly improving. Only we should not forget that the same is rapidly moving forward everything related to radar and electronic warfare (EW). In our day dogfight is an invisible battle electromagnetic rays at a distance of hundreds of kilometers, where on the battlefield the aircraft can appear at the last moment. This element of surprise here, as before, is half the battle. And, according to Russian experts, it is possible to achieve a much more reliable, simple and cheap ways than stealth technology. In this case, professionals say, to abandon these technologies, no one is going, just not to do their priority to the detriment of the more important combat characteristics.

The armament of the aircraft of the future

Recently, the Advisor to the first Deputy General Director of concern "radio-Electronic technology" (KRET) Vladimir Mikheev said that the armed fighters of the 6th generation along with other systems will stand railguns, microwave range, which will be able to disable the electronics of enemy aircraft. However, he acknowledged that it is a matter of the distant future.

In addition, according to Mikheev, the new aircraft will be equipped with long range hypersonic missiles, capable of operating in air, ground and sea targets. He explained: "Sure, they used the principles of "free hunting and collective responsibility" – when a group of missiles, reaching remote enemy forces that must be suppressed, chooses the main and secondary targets and distributes them among themselves".

In the Western mass media actively discussed the news (she also appeared with the filing of the representatives of the KRET), which deals with laser protection of the new Russian fighter is lasers to destroy homing missiles. For example, the British Daily Mail wrote that the powerful installation of its direct rays would just "burn the eyes" of the enemy missiles, destroying their heads homing systems.

In addition, new aircraft, of course, will equip and suppression system EW. Each unit will be not only to suppress the enemy, but also to transmit data. He will be able to perform multiple functions. For example, the same device will be the radar and electronic warfare system, and a communication device, and a communication tool, and will be able to perform the functions of navigation and IFF systems. In fact, it is a powerful computer whose input and output are digital radio transmitting and receiving device. And work such a unit can, given the collective actions of the entire group of forces.

New U.S. fighter jet

USA, if you believe open data in the construction of the fighter to the 6th generation was more advanced on us. In any case there it is already known that this car makes a firm "the Boeing". The project is called the F/A-XX. To make his plan 2030, and to come it needs to replace the carrier istrebitelya F/A-18E/F Super Hornet.

Known and the shape of the plane: its layout was first shown in 2009. However, then seriously changed and redesigned, but the fundamental things still remained. For example, its airframe is a "flying wing", which has no vertical stabilizer. This option was adopted based on the fact that the keel creates extra wind resistance, and the rotation is due to the small rudders located on the wing. During straight flight the rudders are removed and are available only while maneuvering.

F/A-XX – seat fighter with two engines. Maximum takeoff weight – at 45 tons, range – 3000 km On the engine type not reported, but experts believe he is likely to turbojet. With the ability to provide supersonic cruise flight in the nonafterburning mode. The maximum speed is not specified, but hypersonic, it will almost certainly not reach. It is also known that creates a version of unmanned machines. As for tactics, that information comes scarce. They say the American developers, as well as Russian, now solve the problem of equipping the plane of the laser or electromagnetic weapons. And here, as well as Russian experts, they have a problem with the power plant. The us military said that the speed and stealth aircraft are not a priority – emphasis on range target detection and attack from long distances, from which we can conclude that the maneuverability for the machine, which will fight mostly overseas again will not.

Russian dragon for China

The plane of the 6th generation in the Chinese version is a multi-role fighter, which was named "Hoon of the moon" – "Fire dragon". According to Chinese media, the technical breakthrough in the creation of this car became possible only thanks to scientists and designers from Russia, working in China. Write that in the project "Fire dragon" employs several dozen Russian developers and they already have achieved quite a lot.

Claim that "Khun Loong" – the machine which is most advanced in its class and a number of technical solutions may compete with Russian and American counterparts. In "hung the moon", as well as in the plane of the 6th generation, the bet is placed on agility, which is not surprising, given that the basis was taken by the Russian military and engineering school – literally. The maneuverability of the car allegedly allows you to carry it even a "Cobra Pugacheva".

Other advanced solutions applied on the plane, are related to the equipment for reflection of attacks of fighters, control systems, radar stations, enhancing the accuracy of fire at ground targets.

The aircraft will be equipped with a laser during a rocket fight will be able to intercept and track the target. The mechanism of arms control on the whole is very perfect. In addition to lasers, it also includes the installation of optical, radar sighting system and the latest navigation system.

In addition, writes the news Agency Shanghai News, "pulsed Doppler radar is responsible for detecting and tracking ground targets and air targets, including large aerial objects. He is able to block some dangerous immediate objectives. On the back of the appliance equipped with special electronic equipment. Radar system with tip-off allows you to set the nationality of the object. The antenna is able to see the front of the fighter at a distance of about 150-180 km, and at the rear at a distance of 90 km, you can also find tanks at a distance of 60-90 km, at a distance of 150-180 km to see sea object. Aircraft radar able to simultaneously track 20 air targets and simultaneously attack eight closest objects."


Based on all of that became aware of the work on the aircraft of the 6th generation in different countries, you can make a preliminary conclusion: in our and Chinese planes a number of similar technical solutions, and therefore, with high probability, they can be very similar. But Russian and American planes of new generation will certainly be very different from each other in appearance and application.

Oleg Bagov


Tags: AME , aviation

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