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Aerospace Pictures and Art Thread


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Cockpit of the mighty blackjack:




According to my sources, there is an extremely fine wire mesh in the canopy glass of the TU-160.  This prevents radar waves from entering the cockpit and reflecting off of anything in there.  It serves the same purpose as the gold-colored finish on F-22 canopies.


I *think* you can just barely make out the mesh in this picture.


The airframe is also supposed to incorporate radar absorbing material in strategic locations (the air intakes, I would wager) in order to further reduce radar cross section.

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I've never seen RCS figures for the blackjack, but if I had to guess, yes, those aren't the sort of measures that are going to make the airplane small on radar, they're the sorts of things that make it less enormous.  Similar things were proposed for the (X)B-70:




Note that, sans RAM application, the XB-70 was ten times as large on radar as a B-52!

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Front aspect of a Eurofighter Typhoon.  Note the PIRATE IRST up front, and the shape of the air intakes.  The curvature of the intake ducts hides the compressor blades of the engine, as these are a major contributor to radar cross section.  Even more aggressively curved intakes are seen in the F-22 raptor:




These "S-duct" intakes are also believed to be coated with radar absorbing material, so that any radio energy entering the intakes will be attenuated before it can ricochet down the intakes and into the compressor blades.  S-ducts do come at some cost of additional drag and additional distortion of the airflow entering the engines.  For this reason, the F119 engines in the F-22 are believed to be very tolerant of distorted airflow.


Curiously, the engine compressors appear to be visible from the front through the intakes of the PAK-FA:




Which seems like an odd oversight in an aircraft that is otherwise (planform alignment, horizontal stabs hidden behind main wing, avoidance of right angles) well-designed for low radar cross section.


The most likely explanation is that what we are seeing is not an engine compressor at all, but a radar blocking device in front of the engine.  The F/A-18E/F has a similar device.


However, other explanations are possible.  The PAK-FA prototypes have provisional engines, so it seems plausible that the definitive type 30 engine will have such different airflow requirements that the air intakes will have to be completely re-designed in the future anyway.  It is also possible that the compressor blades themselves will be made of a carbon-carbon composite, which would reflect radar less effectively than traditional metal compressor blades, which would make hiding them less critical.

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Almaz-Antey showed results of their analysis of MH17 plane damage. They managed to point at possible place of launch, based on given material. Material was given by official European/Netherlands investigation team.


Pics (a lot of them):



Missile was 9M38M1 with 9N314M warhead, launched by Buk-M1 from Zareshenskoe.


Some pics:












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This whole time US officials, bellingcat and medias were claiming that missile was from Snezhnoe. Now we have at least something remotely objective to speak about. Almaz-Antei analysis points at very different missile launch site. Nobody showed any evidance of rebel's/Russian Army/Putin's own Buk system in that area. And there are evidence of UAF presents in that area.

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