Oh boy. I give up now. I am talking about fuel FRACTION and you are talking about fuel weight. Yes. The F-18 A/B had a piss poor fuel fraction and was quite short legged , just like the Mig29. The Mig-29 has despite the higher thrust has also had big weight growth, precisely to remedy the fuel fraction problem,negating the increased thrust.
The F-18A/b/c had excellent range and equal to that of the F-16 on purely internal fuel - and the proportion of fuel:weight was just about the same (3250:7000 for the f-16 and 4900:10600 for the f-18). It lost out on range mainly because of some design flaws such, which added considerable drag once they were loaded! And no, the F-18 clean had much better range than the MiG-29, which carried a proportionately smaller amount of fuel.
A good example and one which has caused much embarrassment to its users is the F/A-18A/C. Development F/A-18s with a better fuel fraction did indeed outrange the early F-16, but production aircraft with a much draggier pylon design fell short by a solid margin.
As for "big" weight growth on the MiG-29, it allowed for a much better internal fuel capacity, increased thrust and even better range. And TWR advantage would be negated (and that too barely) only if both a/c were loaded to full internal capacity. Otoh, the M/35 would achieve similar range of the 29 with much less fuel and thereby have a better TWR.
Everything that is "counter intuitive" becomes very intuitive if you start taking non dimensional measures like fuel fraction.
You are probly right, I am no aero guru - for me FF is v.similar to fuel weight:empty weight. Do explain the difference, gyan is appreciated.
It has FBW, probably replacing the fire and leak prone hydraulics, but I doubt it is a big configuration change to unstable, if you find anyone saying that they went to unstable, I will stand corrected. Wiki still states the thrust to weight of the Mig-35 as 1:1 or so, similar to the original Mig-29A. Nothing else new there.
ARe you suggesting that unstable a/c require less TWR? But then you point out that the M2K, despite having unstable config, had poor TWR. What is your point here cause obviously I am missing it. Seems to me that your whole argument is that the F-16 is the best, and it is actually what the IAF secretly wanted as a MiG-21 replacement, that too a lot smaller, and anything otherwise would never have been acceptable. Total conspiracy theory, and I am not buying it without some v.clear evidence/logic.
I could be wrong, but by the time ASRs came out, such things were definitely around, at least the HMS was.
Huh! Are you suggesting that India should have instead locally developed the HMS + R-73 equivalent instead and that would have been the end of all things ? Why we don't have that even today and are putting an Israeli HMD in the Tejas ! I think the IAF would have taken a very very dim view of things if that was what was proposed.[/quote]
Uhh no, what I am suggesting is that a simpler way could have been taken, and TKS is suggesting the same. Cannot specify details obviously since we don't even have ASRs. IAF was not looking for LCA sized F-16, which is what you are insisting - there is little proof to this. That would be plain dumb.
Bandar does a lot better than that because it uses a high thrust to weight ratio engine and is smaller than the F-16 and probably has less range and payload as well . The early F-16s had a 115 KN/22,000lbs or so engine. Pray, where would you have found a 120KN engine. There is none available TODAY with the T:W ratios that go around today, unless you say GE-414 EPE . As for a 7 ton empty weight platform, with a Mig21 class engine that was available, it sure will have the performance of well, a barn door and go from Bangalore to Hosur and back, if it needed to do any better.
Why would you stick a MiG-21 class engine in a 7 ton frame? The RD-33 was surely available, hell even the AL-31 might have been for a slight weight penalty to empty weight.
There are no magic bullets. Given your state of technology, the engineering trade offs are made. With better tech, you can have your cake and eat it too to a greater extent, or you will have to sacrifice an arm and a leg in areas like payload and range to get performance in one attribute like maneuverability. So talking about doing some magical things with without serious trade offs using obsolete technology is simply crazy.
Precisely - since there are no shortcuts, IAF was not demanding fancy doodads - something simpler would have worked!
To put things in perspective, the Tejas with an empty weight of 6.5tons, a nearly 85KN and HMDS and off boresight heat seeking and active radar missiles still gets whines from IAF because it does not meet the Sustained Turn Rate requirements of the IAF ASR and the call for GE414 engines! The air force gives a grudging IOC, given that in sustained turn is not so critical anymore.
How bad is the performance shortfall - anyone know? Btw, if you follow my posts, I'd already said that around 2000s is when IAF mistakes become rather clear, they should have ordered more of the mk1s.
Think kind of reception a 7ton empty weight fighter with R-25 engines with 60KN engines and no HMD/off boresight and active radar weapons would have got as an air defense fighter.
Instead why don't you think of 6.5 ton fighter with RD-33s (8.5 ton engines) + HMS OR 7.5 ton fighter with AL-31s + HMS and active weapons. Radar, engine etc could have been imported in initial batches and slowly been manufactured from raw materials as in the case of the AL - 31 or BARS. IMVHO, this could have been possible by 2000, and the IAF would have jumped on it, even as late as that.