Friday, July 5, 2013

A remarkable air display

The latest Russian Sukhoi Su-35 fighter gave a very impressive air display at the recent Paris air show.  Here's the whole 10-minute flight, captured by an electro-optical infrared camera operated by Flight International.  There are a few technical glitches during the footage, but if you wait a few seconds, they clear up.  I recommend watching it in full-screen mode.

It's interesting to note how brightly the hot areas of the engines show up on the infra-red display.  This demonstrates how so-called 'IRST' (infra-red search and tracking) devices can detect and track aircraft from as much as several dozen miles away, without needing to rely on radar or other devices that emit radiation, which can be detected and tracked in its turn.

The USA has chosen to design its newest warplane (the F-35) differently from the Su-35, emphasizing technology and stealth over raw engine power and aerodynamic maneuverability.  Which approach is correct remains to be seen . . . and may be demonstrated in combat in due course, certainly between 'client states' of the respective powers, but hopefully not between the powers themselves!



LL said...

It makes me wonder what the Su-35 could do with vectored exhaust.

Old NFO said...

I never cease to be amazed that they can tail slide and not get compressor stalls...

HerrBGone said...

All that high-alpha hover flip it around and go the other way looks like a 3D RC plane doing things that should be impossible with a "real" aircraft.

Tam said...

Um, how is this any different from the maneuvers the Su-35 was doing in the videos that came with my DVD-ROM copy of U.S. Navy Fighters Anthology back in 1999? (Although the video looks a lot prettier on this quad-core box with a 25" screen than it did on a 15" CRT driven by a Pentium II. ;) )

This plane is old, old news. Russia's been shopping them to potential buyers since the collapse of the USSR.

It's also kinda apples and oranges to compare it to the F-35, don't you think? I mean, the planes are not intended to serve the same roles, with the Flanker E being an air-superiority fighter in the mold of the Eagle and Raptor while the F-35 is a multirole aircraft intended to be able to fill the CAS role if needed.

Stu Garfath. Sydney, Australia. said...

Nice. On the surface, so to speak. I'll be a bit cynical here. SU-35, F-35, and any other '35' - China (?), are clearly very capable flying machines, but there are, drawbacks, potential failings.

First up, if the package, -pilot and machine, have to communicate, then it's vulnerable.
I guarantee it, that was my 'job' in the R.A.A.F.
Secondly, sophistication can have a VERY time costly maintenance hours penalty, - and systems survivability in a real world multi-causal hostile environment, whilst 'proved' in every simulation, will invariably not follow the 'rules' and outcomes simulations exhibit, or predict, always.

Thirdly, what the Yanks forgot, after WWII, then re-learned in Korea, and re-learned again in Vietnam still holds true, and damn near always will.
Simply put, 'You don't show up to a Geekfight with just a computer, mentally, and physically, pack a gun'!.
Said with effing HUGE apologies to the late Robin Olds.