Fictional inventory of modern airforces

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: After 1900' started by Khanzeer, Apr 8, 2019.

  1. butch4343 Active Member

    Feb 17, 2009
    If we are looking for fictional air forces , have the Shah of Iran last a bit longer or at least his heir last a bit longer that OTL, prehaps till 1985.

    Then you would have had the Imperial Irannian Air Force , with more F14s (145 I believe) than they have in the OTL, a large buy of F16s to replace the F5s in the inventory and the first of the F18 Hornet buy starting to be delivered to Iran. Add in to the mix the 8 E3s that ended up being delivered in the OTL to Saudi Arabia and you have a pretty effective airforce in place for the 1980s. You also have the added 24-36 Sea Harriers that were intended to be embarked on an invincible class carrier as well to add into the mix.

    If that happens then on the Iraqi side what would you have by 1985, Mirage 2000 , with seed money going into the Mirage 4000 program along with Saudi Arabia's investement. Iraq even in the late 1970s was starting to move away from the USSR for its aircraft, whilst the Mig-21 was much loved by the Iraqis , the Mig-23 wasnt well recieved and the SU-17/20/22 even less so, the only real large scale purchase for Iraq in the 1980s would perhaps be Mig-29s. In addition to this I believe that Iraq had made overtures to PANAVIA in regards to a purchase of Tornados, the role later being filled by SU-24s .
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  2. Uruk Meatshield of KGS

    Feb 5, 2011
    They were planing to upgrade the Lightning to Sidewinders that were standard armament of the Draken (together with Falcons) not to mention that it stayed in service OTL in all user countries to the end of the Cold War, so I dont agree.
    If we really go alt history Sweden and Finland do a joint Project in the 70´s and do the Mod 4 Draken
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  3. tomo pauk Well-Known Member

    Jan 20, 2016
    Bigger might be better, but Lighting was not appreciably bigger than Draken (that have had a bigger wing, actually). That meant that aircraft is basically two engines with as tight airframe wrapped around them. Meaning that not just the Lightning has small fuel tankage per unit of thrust, but the allocated volume for the electronics is also limited. Size of radar's aerial is limited due to the layout of intakes (MiG-21 sharing the same problem).
    From 1960s on, great advantage in air to air combat is with the side that has better missiles, electronics onboard, and better support from surface- and airborne-based radars and jammers, plus a better tactics and training - so we see Sea Harriers trashing both Skyhawks and Mirages.
    Draken was from day 1 outfitted with excellent electronics, that the Swiss wanted so bad in their Mirages that price of resulting fighters almost doubled.

    At the end of the day, Lightning combined shortcomings of a small aircraft (lack of range, not much of a radar/missile/bomb truck, lack of easy upgrade options) with shortcomings of big aircraft (weight, twice the number of engines -> high cost to own and operate) resulting in the fighter being far from a commercial success.
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  4. Riain Well-Known Member

    Feb 17, 2007
    I find it interesting that aircraft performance is considered to be an important reason why aircraft are purchased and upgraded. A look at the defence policy of Britain in the early 60s will provide a better set of reasons why the lightning was not a commercial success than its supposed shortcomings. Britain in the early 60s was struggling to balance her world role with new responsibility of the welfare state, NHS and other things that drew heavily on the public purse. This meant that the lightning didn't get developed to its potential and Britain wasn't seen as a valuable strategic partnership. Instead it was seen as a country that made sweeping decisions like planes being obsolete then overturning this decision, or developing advanced aircraft to flight stage and then cancelling them.

    In that environment it is difficult to convince a country to buy the worlds fastest climbing fighter, that is comparable in range to its contemporaries but has a bigger more advanced radar and weapons than most.
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  5. Hammerbolt Well-Known Member

    Mar 8, 2015
    The UK's management of it's aircraft industry post WWII was a complete and utter disaster...
  6. Rufus Shinra Statistical unlikeliness

    Nov 19, 2010
    No political will to keep a sovereign armaments industry while more and more parts of it were trusted over to the US, believing the "special relationship" wasn't one-sided (ask Rolls-Royce how the F136 engine it was supposed to design for the F-35 is going). Cue 70 years later with little realistic prospect for leading any serious program while the local know-how dwindled away.
  7. Pretaporter Well-Known Member

    Feb 16, 2019
    Not always the case, such as with the Hawk.

    That may be rubbish at its ground attack role, for all I know, but the trainer must be absolutely outstanding for the US to drop their NMH rule and buy a load.

    (Well, I think the US ones were literally made there, under licence, but y'know what I mean.)

    Not only advanced aircraft, but advanced recruitment too.

    SPECTRUM saw the light that there's no reason women cannot be fly-by-wire fighter pilots way before NATO did! :extremelyhappy:

    Indeed, superior pilots in general, which is why no man made the grade for the Angel ;)
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  8. WILDGEESE WARNING: Left-handed & extremely accident prone!!!

    Sep 11, 2013

    Watched a program in the early 2000's called "EQUINOX" Episode "G-LOCK"

    Women (through gritted teeth) are just as good as men in the cockpit.

    The real bonus though is they can pull more G's than a man, around 2 to 3 on average due to the fact that women have most of their muscle mass in their thighs where as men it's in their arms and upper body.

    It's all to do with these exercises pilots do to keep the blood in their heads similar to the Kegel's that post birth women do.

    Hilarious seeing the male pilots only hitting 6/7 G's until they did the 'funky chicken' when the women where going straight up to 10.
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  9. Simon Thread Killer Extraordinaire

    Sep 20, 2009
    It's rare but they do on occasion buy, or more accurately license produce, foreign designs. Off the top of my head you had the Canberra, the Harrier, the PC-9 etc. Possibly even more as well that I just haven't seen mentioned.
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  10. Cryhavoc101 Well-Known Member

    Jun 27, 2014
    1123 6536 5321
    The US does it more often than you would think - they are not that shy that they cannot look at a 1st in class weapon system and use it.

    Just off the top of my head and granted there may be differences to the legacy weapon regarding the US version but teh point is still valid!

    The last 2 main tank guns were British and German - the L7 105 Rifled (used on the M60, early M1s and the Current M1128 Mobile gun system) and the Rheinmetall L/44 120mm (M1A1+)
    The Current LMG is a Belgium design - the Minimi
    The Current GPMG and Tank coax - the M240 aka the FN MAG is also Belgium
    The current side arm the F9 is a copy of the Italian Beretta 92F
    The light artillery - M119 105mm gun is a copy of the British L118
    The 84mm Charlie G MAW is well a copy of the Swedish Carl Gustav 84mm AT weapon
    The US Navy Goshawk trainer is effectively a BAe Hawk
    M252 81mm Mortar - a copy of the British L16A2
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  11. Zen9 Well-Known Member

    Nov 18, 2018
    So I've sort of dealt with how the Lightning could go in it's own thread.

    Though for the RAF the Type 571 single engine delivers a lot of what's needed for the variety of missions that GOR.339 covered. Less the all singing TSR.2 than a sort of British Viggen. With variants built for the different roles. This could easily cover the MRI mission and remove the need for the Jaguar.
    This would sweep the latet F104 out of the picture and considering the timing call into question the Viggen itself.
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  12. JudgeKing Logical Alcoholic

    Dec 10, 2010
    somewhere, anywhere, everywhere, nowhere
    Here's an expanded list of foreign aircraft used by the United States:
    Aeritalia G.222 - C-27 Spartan
    AgustaWestland AW139 - MH-139
    Alenia C-27J Spartan II
    Antononv An-26
    Bombardier Global Express - E-11A Sentinel
    British Aerospace Harrier - AV-8 Harrier
    British Aerospace Hawk - T-45 Goshawk
    British Aerospace 125 Jet Dragon - C-29
    CASA C-212 Aviocar - C-41A
    CASA/IPTN CN-235 - C-144/HC-144 Ocean Sentry
    Canadair CL-13 Sabre
    Canadair Challenger 604 - C-143A
    Chengdu J-7
    De Havilland Canada DHC-2 Beaver - C-127, L-20A/B, U-6A/B
    De Havilland Canada DHC-3 Otter - U-1A/B Otter
    De Havilland Canada DHC-4 Caribou - CV-2/C-7 Caribou
    De Havilland Canada DHC-5 Buffalo - AC-2/CV-7A/C-8A Buffalo
    De Havilland Canada DHC-6 Twin Otter - UV-18 Twin Otter
    De Havilland Canada DHC-7 Dash-7 - RC-7B/EO-5C
    De Havilland Canada DHC-8 Dash-8 - E-9A Widget
    Diamond DA40 - T-52A
    Dornier Do328 - C-146 Wolfhound
    English Electric Canberra - B-57/RB-57 Canberra
    Eurocopter EC145 - UH-72 Lakota
    Fokker F27 Friendship - C-21A Troopship
    IAI Kfir - F-21
    Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-15
    Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-17
    Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21
    Mikoyan MiG-29
    PZL M28 Skytruck - C-145 Skytruck
    Pilatus PC-6 Porter - AU-23 Peacemaker/OV-12/UV-12 Chiricahua
    Pilatus PC-9 - T-6 Texan II
    Pilatus PC-12 - U-28A Spectre
    Shenyang J-5
    Short 330 - Short C-23A Sherpa
    Short 360 - Short C-23B Sherpa
    Last edited: May 15, 2019
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  13. tomo pauk Well-Known Member

    Jan 20, 2016
    Performance was a factor, but, by the start of 1960s, EE Lighting is just another Mach 2 fighter. Yes, it will out-climb just about anyone, but it will not out-climb a missile that countries were also buying from 1950s on. Shortcomings of Lighting are not supposed, it's a simple math. Just like it was a simple math that made Vampires and Hunters being commercial successes, unlike the Javelin or Sea Vixen.
    Granted, the 'wobbly' nature of British government towards it's aero industry will not help the matter.

    We have a 'non-power' country of Sweden exporting it's aircraft, as well as France, not a bigger power than UK, grabbing the market for Mach 2 fighters with Mirage III and it's derivatives. After all, UK have had plenty of funds and plenty of smart people to design & develop three different 4-engined jet bombers and three different 2-engined fighters post ww2 (just service-types, plus prototypes), so let's not blame it on the NHS and welfare state.

    Any sources to prove that Lighting have had comparable range to it's contemporaries, as well as for it's radar and weapons being that advanced?
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  14. Hammerbolt Well-Known Member

    Mar 8, 2015
    You can add the Mig-15 to this list. And this should be called "more or less secretly bought/stolen/bribed away" ;)
    As for the Kfir, it was leased to work as an Aggressor.
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  15. NOMISYRRUC Putting a banging donk on it!

    Nov 7, 2014
    This is the RAF's plan for the period from March 1964 to March 1975 at 6th March 1964.

    It is part of National Archives File 20/11708/68770.

    Plan P March 1964.png
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  16. Khanzeer Well-Known Member

    Mar 30, 2019
    Was F 101 ever used in interceptor role by Taiwan?
    Could it possibly be a better choice for them than f104 ?
    Can a modified for A2G version of f101 be a competitor of f104 in Europe?
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  17. Barry Bull Donor

    Apr 21, 2008
    Hong Kong
    The RCS wold be high with such huge vertical stabilizers. Shaping of the aircraft has been established as more effective in reducing RCS than use of RAM.
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  18. Barry Bull Donor

    Apr 21, 2008
    Hong Kong
    Hasn't such argument been significantly countered by John Boyd?
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  19. Barry Bull Donor

    Apr 21, 2008
    Hong Kong
    While politics is and was an issue, high speed high altitude interceptors were and are going to have a limited marketw as most countries' air force need more versatile multi role aircraft than an interceptor with some strike capacity.
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  20. Riain Well-Known Member

    Feb 17, 2007
    I thought Boyd's argument was to have as much energy as possible, and the Lightning had plenty of that by virtue of its exceptional power to weight ratio.

    The limited ground attack capability of the Lightning was not due to design, but to lack of development.