- Well, what are your impressions?
- I remember the enormous efforts on the control stick - my hands ached with the habit, especially with full refueling. Extremely gluttonous pepelats. Awkward at medium heights. When accelerated in the stratosphere to 1,8M - comes to life. On landing, it is better than anyone I have ever flown on, only to adapt to speed. In general, the sturdy generation 4 aircraft.
- Could you fight on it?
- As a high altitude interceptor. Easily.
- And go to the MiG-31 against the "Raptor"?
- Pure suicide.
- It is logical. Too different planes for different tasks ...
- Quite the opposite - they have one task: “sweep out” the enemy Aviation from heaven, cover a group of planes or airspace in a given square. All of them are purebred Fighters. Airplanes to gain superiority in the air. Nobody forbids the pilot of the “Reptor” to shoot at the MiG-31, and the MiG to shoot down the “Reptor” or any other enemy aircraft. Another thing is that Iglam and the Reptors can handle any task of the Fighter, while the highly specialized 31st is not able to repeat much of what the Reptor or the domestic Su-27 can do ...
- You're just an incorrigible pessimist. The combination of speed and altitude characteristics of the MiG-31 is unique, and today has no analogues among modern fighters.
- Speed ... The fact that the 31-th can accelerate to 3000 km / h does not give him exactly any advantage in the fight with the "Raptor" or F-15C. There are very different factors involved.
- Doubt in the capabilities of the radar "Barrier"?
- You see, what a trick here: air combat is not a joust. We got up in the corners, waved our spears, rushed towards each other ... No! Real air combat is a group fight. I will not be alone, but from the other side there will probably be several groups — destructive links, strike machines, AWACS ... Tell me, what does my “Barrier” against 9-meter radar “Sentry” mean? He has operators and liaison officers on board the 15-20, but does my single navigator / operator in the back cockpit “work on a lot”?
On board the upgraded long-range radar detection and control aircraft (AIR), A-50U
- You are a pessimist, definitely. After all, you are not alone in battle either - similar to the A-50 long-range radar detection aircraft are in service with the Russian Air Force, by the 2016 they promise the A-100 Premier with active PAR.
- Yes. But then what is the meaning of the MiG-31 with its super-radar?
“Well, you see ... the more you know, the more you know, you can detect the enemy earlier.”
- What does it matter when there is an ARL plane next to it?
- Imagine that the connection with A-50 was interrupted ... interference, software crash on its board or something like that. And you - once! and own powerful radar, sees targets for 300 km!
- If the AVAKSA is not near, and the enemy has it, we are guaranteed the end. "Barrier" is not a panacea here. Consider the difference in radar power and sensitivity (look again at MiG and A-50), many times greater possibilities for classifying and selecting targets and pointing other fighters at them, and finally, for AWACS, there is a full view and tracking in azimuth, unlike radar Barrier, which sees targets in the 90 ° sector (comment of the whole sector of the review is 160 °. Angle of view 90 ° +/- deviation of the HEADLIGHT on 35 ° in each direction). The escort sector is already 70 °.
- Listen, I met such numbers on the Internet. The upgraded MiG-31BM, equipped with a radar, close to its capabilities radar Zaslon-M (created in 1980-x Zaslon-M did not go into the series), is able to detect the target with 19 ESR. meters at a distance in 320 km. Cool?! By the way, what is the goal with EPR 19 square meters?
- A-10 "Thunderbolt". Much depends on the angle and the availability of weapons on the external sling.
Effective scattering area (EPR) - determines the properties of an object to scatter an electromagnetic wave. Depends on the size and configuration of the target, the properties of its material, the length and polarization of the radar wave, and the direction of irradiation. The increased value of the EPR means greater radar visibility of the object, reducing the EPR makes it difficult to detect.
- It turns out that 31 has a huge advantage - it is not only capable of detecting targets at a distance of three hundred kilometers, but also attacking them with P-37 missiles. No one in the world has anything like it!
MiG-31 with a removed nose fairing at a foreign air show.
The public was surprised by the radar "Barrier" with a phased antenna array.
The public was surprised by the radar "Barrier" with a phased antenna array.
- If we omit the topic of the availability of P-37 and experience of their use in combat units, it turns out something like this: when irradiated from the front hemisphere, the MiG-31 has an EPR within 20 ... 25 square. meters F-15C with suspended missiles has an EPR within 10 square. meters Even with a certain advantage of the “Barrier” over foreign radars AN / APG-63 (V) 1,2,3 - who can detect the enemy earlier?
- Why does 31 have such a huge EPR? I heard that the Su-27 family of aircraft has a minimum ESR within 5 square. meters, on the new versions of the Su-30 and Su-35, it is reduced to 4 square. meters
- Firstly, the glider itself MiG-31 - there 25% lifting force is provided only by the shape of the fuselage. Huge air intakes, engine compressors. Can you imagine how all this "shines" when irradiated from the front? Again, aerodynamic ridges, retractable fuel rod, pylons, rockets on the external sling - I'm not talking about the X-NUMX-meter “logs” of the P-4 weighing 37 kg. Finally, the quality of the assembly and fitting of the parts of the flashlight and plating — in those years when the 600 was created, it seemed insignificant.
- Incredible. 5-fold difference compared to the "dryers"!
- Do not forget, those figures that you cited by Su-27 refer to its minimum EPR - without suspensions, when irradiated strictly in full face. With clusters of rockets under the wing and at 3 / 4 angle, the ESR values of the Su-27, Su-35 and F-15C may well grow to 15 square. meters - this figure appears in the calculations of the domestic Air Force. In any case, it is much lower than that of 31.
- Do you want to say, MiG-31 and F-15C notice each other at the same distance?
- Exactly. And it's not a fact that 31 will be able to take advantage of its advantage in the form of P-37 super-missiles.
- How about other foreign fighter jets?
- In the case of the compact F-16, everything is much more complicated - the value of its minimum ESR is estimated at 3 sq. meter Even with the suspension, it is unlikely to be larger than the 5. In the theory of "Barrier" should detect a similar target from a distance of 120-180 km - depends on the specific configuration of the target, interference and energy potential of the receiving-transmitting path. But you do not forget that the detection, assured capture and tracking necessary for missile guidance are different things. No matter what happens, the hunter has turned into a game - the likelihood is high that the F-16 will release AIM-120 before it can be noticed by the MiG-31. Especially in the presence of external targeting with AVAKS.
- Hefty AWACS need to "throw" the first. He probably has an EPR, like the B-52 - more 100 square. meters!
- Easy to say. AWACS does not go in the first line - it patrols far behind, often does not invade the battle zone at all.
- It seems to me that the MiG should in any case have a tactical advantage due to its high speed and flight altitude. Consider that the rudders of the American AIM-120 rocket are cut off to be placed in the internal compartments of the F-22 - in a discharged atmosphere at an altitude of 17-20 km they will become ineffective. MiG will be able to come off relatively easily.
- It is on the one hand. On the other hand, the laws of aerodynamics are valid for all. 31 also has a restriction on maneuvers in the stratosphere.
- Can you remember what is the maximum allowable overload at high altitudes?
- It is impossible to forget. 3,3G. With an altitude of 17 km and speed 2,2M.
- Clear. You do not know what the value of the EPR in the "Raptor" or F-35? On the Internet there are numbers from 0,0001 to 0,3 square. meters Which one is closer to real?
- Nobody really knows. Most likely, hundredths of square meters. meters from the front hemisphere.
- Yes, superficially, "Raptor" should have a ESR lower than that of any of the fourth-generation aircraft. “Tapered” shape of the fuselage, parallel faces and edges, V-shaped vertical tail, besperepletny lantern, internal suspension arms, gray smooth surfaces, without radomes of radio engineering devices, cracks, rivets, etc. radio-contrast elements ...
“That's why I say - in the case of the Raptor, the focus with the P-37 rocket hitting 300 km will not work - the Vulture cannot simply be detected at such a distance.
- And in general will succeed?
- We have never worked out the interception of similar targets. The only thing I know is the confident capture and tracking of a low-flying cruise missile, similar to Tomahawk, with the 1 ESR EPR. meter is carried out at a distance of 20-30 km. But keep in mind that these data are valid only when targets are detected against the background of the earth's surface.
- Can you see better against the ground?
- On the contrary. "Barrier" is much better at seeing objects at medium and high altitudes.
- Clear. Those. you want to say that ...
- That in the real world any of the domestic and foreign fighter-interceptors of the 4 / 4 + generation has similar capabilities for conducting air combat at long and medium distances. In this case, the same Su-27 has an advantage over the MiG-31 due to its lower visibility and high chances of winning in the melee.
- In general, the concept of the use of Mig-31 provides for participation in "dog dumps"? He also has a built-in 23 mm gun.
- You mean close maneuverable combat? No, because it is considered that this is not his task. Very doubtful decision.
- Why not?
- Because the group fight usually goes into melee. Consider, found each other from a distance of 100-200 km, exchanged missiles, moreover, the probability of hitting the P-33 target in the field conditions is estimated at 0,7. The approach speed - 2-3 thousands of kilometers per hour. If the opponents do not turn away - in a couple of minutes they will meet face to face. What awaits in this case 31-th, I think, does not need to be explained.
- Not required. But did the creators of the MiG-31 really not take this option?
- You understand, 31 was created in 1970 for completely different tasks. Destruction of armadas of missile-carrying bombers in the sky over the Arctic, countering SR-71 “Blackbird” high-altitude reconnaissance aircraft, destruction of reconnaissance balloons ... Nowadays there are no more such threats - SR-71 wrote off 20 years ago, balloons became non-outcast - just open Google Maps . By the way, the gun at 31 was just designed to shoot balloons, not for firing at enemy fighters. The only time practical shooting from it was practiced in Gromovo in 1988. Now the operation of the gun on the 31-th prohibited.
- Tell me straight - is the MiG-31 out of date?
- Well, why so soon. Just a highly specialized interceptor fighter. In a certain sense, the aircraft is outstanding - 20 years ago had no analogues in the world at all according to the capabilities of its avionics ...
- What about the F-14 “Tomcat” with deck registration?
- It looks like, but not analog. The American interceptor was noticeably inferior to the MiG in its LTH. With the advent of the MiG-31B modification and the P-37 missiles, the Yankees also lost the advantage in long-range combat.
- The last Tomkat was written off in 2006 year.
- Yes. The need for Tomcats has disappeared. I say that both the MiG-31 and Tomkat were created under completely different conditions: the exchange of missile strikes at large distances, the interception of supersonic targets in the stratosphere, races at extreme speeds and altitudes. When they were created, no importance was attached to specialized AWACS aircraft. Missile euphoria (hello F-4 "Phantom"!), Disregard for maneuverability - this is not a "front-line" fighter, but an interceptor: he was armed with air defense forces, a sort of flying air defense missile system. Completely different tactics and concepts of air combat, fair for the Cold War times. But who needs it now, when the emphasis is on universality, stealth, super-maneuverability, and the functions of the AEW and UM are transferred to specialized aircraft based on Boeing and IL-76. Try to put the 31-th for export - no one will take even for nothing. Not because the plane is bad in something, but because the very same India or Malaysia simply do not have such threats, for which the MiG-31 is “sharpened”. In addition, it is quite voracious and expensive to operate.
- Then what is the point of having a MiG-31 with the composition of the Russian Air Force? According to representatives of the Ministry of Defense, the upgraded MiG-31BM will be exploited right up to the 2028 year.
- The meaning is simple: there is nothing to replace them. The 31s make up a third of the Air Force fighter-interceptor fleet, and if we write them off we’ll generally stay with a bare sky.
- It turns out that it is still premature to write them off ... Perhaps the situation will be corrected by a large-scale modernization of the existing park?
- So it is - there is a gradual modernization of the park on the MiG-31BM project. The aircraft will become more versatile, will be able to apply high-precision weapon and attack ground targets.
- How about using the MiG-31 as a “radar hunter”? High speed and altitude make it invulnerable to most outdated medium-range air defense systems. (note this does not apply to the C-300 and "Patriot")
MiG-31BM. Navigator's cabin
- "Glass" cabin?
- Yes, now the pilot has an indicator of a tactical situation - if earlier he felt like a cab driver for the navigator, he will now be aware of all the events. ILS replaced the old PPI. Radar "Zaslon" and on-board electronics have been upgraded, now the MiG will be able to simultaneously accompany up to 10 targets and attack the six highest priorities.
- And a lot of these in the ranks?
- To date, a couple dozen, the general plan provides for the modernization of 60 machines.
- So we live!
- Little by little. Well, come on: For the fact that the number of takeoffs was equal to the number of landings!