Sunday, March 17, 2019

Once again we hear about stealth being good for only 5 to 10 years...

via National Interest.
Israeli F-35Is uniquely will have an overriding Israeli-built C4 program that runs “on top” of Lockheed’s operating system. One of F-35’s key capabilities come from its superior ability to soak up data with its sensors and share it with friendly forces. Compatibility with datalinks used by friendly Israeli air and ground forces is thus an important aspect from Israel’s perspective as it tracks the position of hostile surface-to-surface rocket launchers and surface-to-air missiles systems.

The new system will also allow the IDF to install Israeli-built datalinks and defensive avionics systems such as radar-jamming pods. An official told Aviation Week the IAF expects the advantages of the F-35’s low radar cross section will be “good for five to ten years” before adversaries develop countermeasures. There already exist methods for detecting stealth fighters, including long-range infrared sensors, electromagnetic sensors, and low bandwidth radars (though all have significant limitations), and more exotic technologies such as quantum radar are also under development.
Story here. 

The story is talking about the Israeli F-35...a plane like no other.  The big issue that keeps getting glossed over is that the Israeli Air Force expects stealth to be only viable for another 5 to ten years.

Let's be generous and say that they're talking 2020 and not 2019.

That's 2025 at the earliest...2030 at the latest if they're correct.  And why should they lie?

What does that mean?

It means that a major selling point for the F-35 will be kaput before it gets full block 4 treatment!

That should be stunning.

What does the plane have to hang its hat on then?  Sensor fusion?  I keep saying that 4th gen planes have the same NOW!  The Gripen and the Super Hornet have both claimed to have sensor fusion.  I'm sure the Russians and Chinese already have it or soon will.

That also helps explain the decision by the Navy to push more Super Hornets and the push against USAF brass on the F-15X.

Face it boys and girls.

An all stealth force is a fool's errand.  Perhaps partial stealth IS the way forward (although some claim that the F-35 is only partially stealthy anyway!).

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