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How Would An A-10 Fare In A Dogfight?  
User currently offlineFlyf15 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 14456 times:

Had a friend ask me how an A-10 would fare in a close-in dogfight, and I wasn't quite sure what the answer was. The opponent doesn't really matter...

Also, is it possible for the gun to be used air-to-air?

30 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineKeesje From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 18 hours ago) and read 14396 times:

Agile but heavy, low power/weight ratio, & low speed ...

Some A10 surprised their oponents by "spreading" them frontal with the Gatling. But that works only once ...



User currently offlineL-188 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 29799 posts, RR: 58
Reply 2, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 17 hours ago) and read 14384 times:

Seen them maneuver at Graf

They are only going to be packing sidewinders, due to the lack of radar.

For an A-10 to survive it will have to stay low and force the other aircraft to fight out of it's element.



OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
User currently offlineSpacepope From Vatican City, joined Dec 1999, 2930 posts, RR: 1
Reply 3, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 16 hours ago) and read 14380 times:

There was an A-10 kill on a Helicopter using the GAU-8 back in Desert Storm. A-10 advantages are: Low speed/high maouverability (makes it difficult to get a lock on), heavy armor and high damage tolerance. It was designed to take 23mm cannon fire, your average 20mmHE round won't do much to it, and even if you do get one or two shots in, it'll still be tough to bring down.

T.J.



The last of the famous international playboys
User currently offlineLY744 From Canada, joined Feb 2001, 5536 posts, RR: 9
Reply 4, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 14342 times:

What kind of sustained turn rates could we expect from an A-10 at low altitude (with a relatively clean aerodynamic configuration and not too much fuel)?

LY744.



Pacifism only works if EVERYBODY practices it
User currently offlineJwenting From Netherlands, joined Apr 2001, 10213 posts, RR: 18
Reply 5, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 14325 times:

sustained? not too much. It would be able to hunt from ambush, which might work against helicopters.

A-10 can turn pretty tight, but can't maintain that because of the low P/W ratio.

b.t.w. there was also a kill (maybe more than one) in Iraq using laser guided bombs against helicopters.
Only works when the helicopter is hovering and unaware of your presence of course.



I wish I were flying
User currently offlineAGM100 From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 5407 posts, RR: 16
Reply 6, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 14320 times:

Here in Tucson we get to see a lot of A-10 action over DM. Since it is a training base their seems to be a standard maneuver routine that gets performed often. It includes what appears to be attacking ground targets at low level with many hard turns and low level rolls to evade ground fire.

I am always amazed at how tight the aircraft can turn, and can not imagine and F-16 trying to get a gun shot on one. Obviously with look down missiles makes the fighter jet dangerous for the A10. But I can see how the A10 would be good at "getting away" at least. I am not a fighter pilot ,but I don't think they like operating @ 200-500 feet above the ground.



You dig the hole .. I fill the hole . 100% employment !
User currently offlineJcxp15 From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 997 posts, RR: 5
Reply 7, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 9 hours ago) and read 14317 times:

It's a slow tank... It can withstand a lot of fire, but can't move too fast... I'd rather be in an F-15 or 16 anyday over the A10.

User currently offlineLY744 From Canada, joined Feb 2001, 5536 posts, RR: 9
Reply 8, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 14293 times:

Forgot to mention some figures for comparison:

A late model A-4 can pull 16-18 deg/s (variation is due to speed) sustained, which is comparable to the MiG-17 and F-15. F-16, MiG-29 could do about 24-26 deg/s, Su-27 is up to 22-24 deg/s, but it has to be pretty tight on fuel, the Gripen is up there too. All assuming low altitude, no significant external aerodynamic interference (tanks, bombs, A-G missiles), and reasonably low fuel, of course.

LY744.



Pacifism only works if EVERYBODY practices it
User currently offlineSpacepope From Vatican City, joined Dec 1999, 2930 posts, RR: 1
Reply 9, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 2 hours ago) and read 14270 times:

You know, once the canopy is shot off, the 'Hog driver can just revert to WWI style combat and start waving his pistol around. Wonder if it would be possible to get a shot off with a Maverick. Going slow and turning tight, an attacker would be hard pressed not to overshoot and present the A-10 with a tasty IR signature. Meanwhile, the Warthog was designed so that the tail surfaces and high bypass engines obscured much of its own IR signature.


The last of the famous international playboys
User currently offlineUSAFHummer From United States of America, joined May 2000, 10685 posts, RR: 52
Reply 10, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 14266 times:

If I recall correctly, during Desert Storm an A-10 had one engine shot off and a lot of its tailplane on that side, and it still flew back to its base and landed safely....one tough puppy...

Greg



Chief A.net college football stadium self-pic guru
User currently offlineJeffM From United States of America, joined May 2005, 3266 posts, RR: 51
Reply 11, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 14269 times:

Back in the 80's, the Navy did a feasabilty study pitting the P-3 against an F-14. The P-3 did well by keeping the Tomcat low and slow and kept out turning it until the Turkey had to leave for gas. It could not get the angles..

Winner? Well, it lived another day...

Most likely the A-10 could do as well, if not better. It surely can turn tighter then the P-3.


User currently offlineAirhead711 From United States of America, joined Mar 2002, 249 posts, RR: 2
Reply 12, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days ago) and read 14264 times:

What about zoom and boom?Any fighter would be able to climb fast and dive back down on an A-10.I know that the bottom of an A-10 is heavily armored,but what about the top?

Scott


User currently offlineJeffM From United States of America, joined May 2005, 3266 posts, RR: 51
Reply 13, posted (10 years 9 months 3 days ago) and read 14248 times:

What is the booming fighter going to shoot? Guns? Heat? And he had better pick his exit route carefully if he misses.... or he will leave his ass un-covered..

User currently offlineImisspiedmont From United States of America, joined May 2001, 6293 posts, RR: 33
Reply 14, posted (10 years 9 months 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 14251 times:

The A-10 is indeed one tough assed bird but in a "dogfight" it's worthless. That might just be why they are provided top cover when air opposition can be expected.


Damn, this website is getting worse daily.
User currently offlineFlyf15 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 15, posted (10 years 8 months 2 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 13982 times:

Say it is in this situation...

A-10 is down low doing its dirty work and an enemy fighter comes into the area (say, a MiG-29). Say an E-3 notifies the A-10 of the MiG-29. The MiG-29 is going to be targeting an aircraft which is well below it and most likely already doing evasive maneuvers, or at least flying quite erratically. The A-10 has a few AIM-9s onboard aswell as whatever other typical weapons. I'd assume that most likely the ensuing dogfight is going to be happening in the A-10's environment, not the MiG-29's. Does the A-10 have a chance?


User currently offlineLY744 From Canada, joined Feb 2001, 5536 posts, RR: 9
Reply 16, posted (10 years 8 months 2 weeks 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 13943 times:

Generally speaking, all fighters are at their best (in terms of maneuverability) at low altitude, not just the A-10. The MiG-29 is particularly potent in that environment in terms of max sustained/instantaneous turn rates (as all LERX equipped fighters seem to be) which are almost certainly significantly better than those of the Warthog. Unless there is a huge difference in minimum speeds between the two aircraft, the classic dogfight advantage would be with the Fulcrum, without even taking into account its HMS-cued Archer AAM allowing for great off-boresight angle shots (and greater range than the AIM-9 AFAIK).

LY744.



Pacifism only works if EVERYBODY practices it
User currently offlineSpacepope From Vatican City, joined Dec 1999, 2930 posts, RR: 1
Reply 17, posted (10 years 8 months 2 weeks 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 13935 times:

Even C-130 crews are trained in fighter avoidance techniques, and are fairly sucessful at it. All the A-10 has to do is keep the fighter turning at low level till the fighter runs out of gas, which in the case of the MiG 29, isn't that long. HMS or not, the A-10 has countermeasures, good ground clutter to hide in, IR supressed exhausts via bypass air and airframe structure, long loiter time, good manouverability, and high damage tolarence.

This is not even considering that the attacking fighter would have been identified by an E-3 and picked off by fighters flying CAP long before it could even detect the A-10 in the weeds. Plus the E-3 can vector the A-10 in tricky ways.. flying a 90 degree course to an aircraft using pulse-doppler radar makes you really hard to see....

T.J.



The last of the famous international playboys
User currently offlineLY744 From Canada, joined Feb 2001, 5536 posts, RR: 9
Reply 18, posted (10 years 8 months 2 weeks 4 days 7 hours ago) and read 13891 times:

"This is not even considering that the attacking fighter would have been identified by an E-3 and picked off by fighters flying CAP long before it could even detect the A-10 in the weeds."

Of course not, because if we did, than we might as well argue that the MiG-29 would never be anywhere near U.S./NATO aircraft because most would be destroyed on the ground by stealth bombers, cruise missiles and other offensive means. Those that won't would surely be destroyed in BVR conditions by AIM-120-equipped air superiority fighters.  Wink/being sarcastic

You mention the A-10's good manouverability, but I don't see that as being the case. The Warthog can sustain a turn at a max rate of about 12deg/sec, while the MiG-29 can do about 24, even if the A-10 is able to maintain a far smaller speed the MiG-29 will still have the tighter turning radius. As for speed, there is certainly a difference in minimum speed, in favour of the A-10, but this is where I believe the HMS/AA-11 really comes in handy. After all, the greatest rate of closure between a fast moving MiG-29 pursuing a slow moving A-10 would be when the Fulcrum is flying in the same direction as the Warthog, which doesn't have to be the case for a succesful Archer attack. I have no doubt that even a highly skilled MiG-29 pilot (which most current operators of the type lack in sufficient proportions) would take a long time and several attempts to get a good shot at an A-10 nevertheless, which is where the Fulcrum's awfully short legs come through as a distinct disadvantage. The -29's dark black engine exhaust is not very helpful in a close-in fight either.

Seeing as the A-10 has neither a maneuverability nor an energy advantage over the MiG-29 the Fulcrum pilot would have a significant moral advantage. After all, he can always make a safe retreat.
All of this is of course based on a very theoretical 1v1 dogfight scenario, seeing as a more realistic approach would be far too unfair and, well, boring.

LY744.



Pacifism only works if EVERYBODY practices it
User currently offlineMaiznblu_757 From United States of America, joined Mar 2002, 5112 posts, RR: 50
Reply 19, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 13802 times:

An S3 got its first ever air to air kill over the mid East somewhere within the last year... If it can do it, I am sure an A10 could do it... Probably have to be with the Maverick. Might get lucky.

User currently offlineLt-AWACS From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 20, posted (10 years 8 months 1 week 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 13788 times:

During OIF we had an A-10 lose an engine and make it back to Kuwait. There are some good pics of it on the internet now that it is declassified. Even the A-10 that went down over Baghdad was controllable for ejection.

I've worked A-10s at Red Flag, and in some DACT situations, and they do get toasted most of the time, but they do have tactics to deal with BVR aircraft in a fight. It is a very tough airframe and since it doesn't have a BVR cape, it likes to get in close. in a 2v2 of Strike Eagles versus A-10s, I actually had the A-10s get one kill on the 15E #2 in close.

Also without Radar the A-10s like close control, which is somewhat of a dying art form among weapons directors, but it is fun and useful in NORAD missions.

"Plus the E-3 can vector the A-10 in tricky ways.. flying a 90 degree course to an aircraft using pulse-doppler radar makes you really hard to see...."
-Spacepope also brings up a good point on the close control. A-10s want to doppler notch a BVR plane as far out as possible. This helps them come in and deal at low level, especially with FSU, (former Soviet Union aircraft) with bad look down shoot down capes.

Ciao, and Hook 'em Horns,
Capt-AWACS, Uncle Sam's AWAX, The best shine for your jet


User currently offlineBoeing nut From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 21, posted (10 years 7 months 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 13534 times:

For combat survivability, I'll take the A-10 over the F-16 easily. I've seen the photos of the A-10 that was nearly blown in half and made it back. It took heavy damage in some cases and brought everybody home. F-16's are to fragile. F-16's are awesome, but fragile.

User currently offlineMD-90 From United States of America, joined Jan 2000, 8507 posts, RR: 12
Reply 22, posted (10 years 7 months 6 days 9 hours ago) and read 13506 times:

Now, a P-38 versus an A-10 would be much more interesting. I think the P-38 might have the guns necessary to penetrate the armor?

User currently offlineLMP737 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 23, posted (10 years 7 months 5 days 3 hours ago) and read 13369 times:

While I was stationed at Miramar I watched two A-10's fly in on a cross country. When they did their break over the field I was amazed at how tight the turn radius was. They practically turned inside themselves. Incredible aircraft the A-10. Any fighter jockey who thinks the A-10 is an easy target will be in for a surprise. A 30mm surprise.

User currently offlineMaiznblu_757 From United States of America, joined Mar 2002, 5112 posts, RR: 50
Reply 24, posted (10 years 7 months 4 days 1 hour ago) and read 13280 times:

During this last conflict, an S-3 actually scored its first air to air kill... If the S-3 can do it, I am sure the A10 would be able to do it.

25 Post contains images Checkerboard : A S-3 got an air-to-air kill?????? Amazing! Any more details? Thanks a lot!
26 Lt-AWACS : yeah air to air kill on what? a helicopter? The Iraqis never launched one fixed wing aircraft during OIF. Ciao, and Hook 'em Horns, Capt-AWACS, Texas-
27 Maiznblu_757 : It was an air to air kill... Albeit, a helocopter...
28 Post contains images Wing : Against one of my F-16 buddies from Turkish AirForce ,if the A-10 guy is lucky will walk all the way back to his homebase.F-16 under the hands of a w
29 Post contains images Cloudy : My guess would be that this depends on whether the opponent has look down/shoot down radar guided missiles. The A10 would be toast against these. All
30 Bsergonomics : I'd be interested to see how an A-10 would fare against a Harrier. As mentioned before, the 'classic' flighters have the problem that, although they h
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