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#1652528 - 08/31/05 07:06 PM EECH Training Mission Report #4  
Joined: Jan 2001
Posts: 24,314
BeachAV8R Offline
Lifer
BeachAV8R  Offline
Lifer

Joined: Jan 2001
Posts: 24,314
KCLT


Today we will look at the remaining weapons available to us when flying the Comanche. The M197 20mm canon is likely the weapon you will turn to as a last resort. The 20mm canon lacks both the range and the punch of your rocket powered missiles, but it does offer certain advantages that your other ordnance lacks. The canon is a 3-barrel Gatling gun that carries 500 rounds of ammunition with a 750 round-per-minute rate of fire. The canon is normally stored in an internal bay under the nose to reduce radar reflectivity until it is selected then it swings out and is slaved to the pilots HIDSS (Helmet Integrated Display and Sight System). The HIDSS integrated with TrackIR allows for a true look and shoot capability in EECH. The canon range of motion is limited to +/- 120 degrees left or right and +10 to -60 degrees up and down. Maximum range for the canon is 1600 meters (1.6 km) although it is advisable to close to a shorter range to ensure the largest percentage of hits on the target.





The canon is effective against soft targets such as tents, trucks, utility vehicles, infantry and other non-armored items. Speaking of infantry, keep in mind that they do not show up on the radar and are often embedded in towns. Some of them carry shoulder fired surface to air missiles so dont drop your guard when overflying enemy held territory.





The major drawbacks to the canon include limited destructive power and the obvious disadvantage of having to close within canon range to engage a target that might decide to shoot back at you. Once you start firing it may take up to several seconds to destroy the target as well, giving them ample opportunity to return fire.



When conducting mop up operations on enemy FARPs the helmet mounted sighting is very convenient for identifying and engaging targets at close range. Typical FARP infrastructure targets take about 25 rounds of canon fire to destroy.



Cont



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#1652529 - 08/31/05 07:07 PM Re: EECH Training Mission Report #4  
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BeachAV8R Offline
Lifer
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Parked helicopters are also fairly susceptible to canon fire. Depending on the type and size of the enemy helicopter it will take about 50 rounds to destroy something like a Hokum.





Enemy armor is a much more difficult nut to crack with the canon. First of all, even if they arent dedicated anti-air units they will still mount machine guns. If you are close enough to shoot at them chances are they will be close enough to shoot at you. The 20mm canon also doesnt really have enough power to shoot through the heavy armor of mechanized vehicles. The T-80U will likely be the most thickly armored unit you will come across on the battlefield and killing it with a canon is almost impossible with a full load of 20mm ammunition. Once again I cant recommend enough Richard Flexman Hawleys excellent EECH Strategy Guide which shows the armor levels and damage that weapons can inflict.

http://www.razorworks.com/enemyengaged/chguide/index.html

His guide includes sensible information on attacking armored targets including the recommendation that if possible it is best to attack armored vehicles where their armor is thinnest (traditionally the top and rear).

For instance, attacking this T-80U main battle tank it took 1000 rounds of 20mm ammunition to destroy it when attacking it from the front, where its armor is the thickest. Since your helicopter only holds 500 rounds of 20mm ammo you can see how fruitless attacking a T-80U is.



Moving around to the rear of another T-80U to attack the thinner rear armor I was able to kill the tank with less than half the rounds (450 rounds), an improvement, but still not very useful on the battlefield.





Troop transports and air defense vehicles are more lightly armored with BMPs taking about 250 rounds to destroy and vehicles such as the SA-19 taking about 150 rounds to destroy. Again, getting close enough to actually kill these vehicles with gun rounds would be a pretty impressive feat of flying (I flew this demo flight in a non-hostile environment).



The last weapon we will look at is the missile around which both the Apache and Comanche was designed: the AGM-114 Hellfire anti-tank missile. EECH models both the laser Hellfire (AGM-114K) and the radar guided Hellfire (AGM-114L). Hellfires can be carried on all four stations of the Comanche giving a total carrying capacity of 14 (6 internal, 8 external) missiles.





Cont



#1652530 - 08/31/05 07:07 PM Re: EECH Training Mission Report #4  
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BeachAV8R Offline
Lifer
BeachAV8R  Offline
Lifer

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Posts: 24,314
KCLT
The Hellfire is used in conjunction with the helicopters sensors to engage and destroy targets out to a maximum range of 8 km. The warhead is effective against all levels of enemy armor and is typically a one-shot, one kill weapon. The -114L is radar guided and is a fire-and-forget weapon that will actively seek out the pre-launch designated target whereas the -114K is a laser guided variant that requires the launching aircraft to illuminate the target with a laser designator. By definition the -114K requires line of sight (LOS) during the terminal phase of the missile flight path in order to guide properly to the target.

A typical Hellfire engagement is to fly into an attack position with your active sensors off to avoid alerting the enemy to your location, acquiring the target with a sensor then launching your weapon. Two different engagement profiles are available for the Hellfire: Lock On Before Launch (LOBL) and Lock On After Launch (LOAL).

A straight-forward LOBL launch merely requires you to sight a target with a sensor, lock on to the target then launch your weapon. In the case of radar Hellfire (-114L) you are free to switch and engage other targets as soon as your missile is on the way. With a laser Hellfire (-114K) you will be required to maintain a lock while the missile flies to the target. The LOBL launch mode provides the maximum range for your Hellfire because the missile flies a relatively flat profile straight toward the target.



Here weve locked up a BMP-2 armored vehicle on our radar. In the HUD we can see that we are in LOBL mode as indicated under the weapon type information and the targeting box is a small solid square indicating that we have LOS on the target. Be aware that when you launch in LOBL mode the flat trajectory of the missile flight path could cause the missile to impact high terrain to your front or any other obstacle (such as buildings) that may lie in the flight path of the missile. The time to missile impact is also displayed on the HUD under the LOBL mode information.





And here the Hellfire is about to reach the target on the low flying LOBL profile.



The second method to engage targets is using the Lock On After Launch mode (LOAL) where you detect the targets, remain hidden behind cover, shoot your missiles, and in the case of laser Hellfires redesignate the target prior to missile impact. With radar Hellfires you can launch without LOS once the targets have been identified and you can launch the missiles as fast as you can cycle through the targets that were previously detected and are stored in the fire control computer.

Here we have detected multiple targets with the radar and have dropped below a ridge to shield us from being engaged. The lack of LOS is denoted on the radar by the hollow target symbols and the dashed line around the target designator box on the HUD.





Launching multiple radar Hellfires by squeezing the launch trigger then hitting the target switch button and firing in rapid sequence sends multiple Hellfires on the way, each targeting a separate vehicle without additional guidance required by our sensors. You can see the missiles raining down on the targets from above since the LOAL mode sends the Hellfires in a high arcing flight profile which also reduces the effective range of the Hellfire by about 500 meters.



The LOAL mode is useful not only for maintaining cover while conducting radar Hellfire attacks, but also in cases where obstructions or terrain impede your LOS to the target, requiring the loft flight profile of LOAL mode.



Cont



#1652531 - 08/31/05 07:07 PM Re: EECH Training Mission Report #4  
Joined: Jan 2001
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BeachAV8R Offline
Lifer
BeachAV8R  Offline
Lifer

Joined: Jan 2001
Posts: 24,314
KCLT
With laser Hellfires you are required to either maintain LOS on the target when using LOBL or reacquire the target as the Hellfire reaches mid-flight when using LOAL mode. Here weve locked on to an SA-13 and are not LOS on the target. With the ridgeline shielding us from counter-fire we launch a laser Hellfire in LOAL mode lofting it up over the valley. As the missile peaks we rise from our hover allowing our radar to lock on to the SA-19 and provide last second guidance to the Hellfire. You can see the mid-course correction to the missile in the distance.





Laser Hellfires are also particularly useful against air threats since you can designate and guide laser Hellfires against targets and they will not be spoofed by chaff, flares or jamming. The only problem is that you must maintain a lock on the target so you must be aware of the limits of your sensors. Often you will have to pitch up significantly to acquire high flying targets.





Here weve acquired a flight of AN-12B cargo aircraft on our air-to-air radar and will engage them with laser Hellfires.





Laser Hellfires are both deadly accurate and extremely powerful, resulting in one shot kills on even large air targets when multiple Stingers would be required to down the same target.





Hellfires are the bread and butter of your Comanche and practicing with the multiple delivery modes and sensors will greatly increase your odds of success on the battlefield.

BeachAV8R

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#1652532 - 08/31/05 07:48 PM Re: EECH Training Mission Report #4  
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Moje Offline
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Moje  Offline
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Sweden
Beautiful report Beach, just one small remark:

You said that "With radar Hellfires you can launch without LOS once the targets have been identified and you can launch the missiles as fast as you can cycle through the targets that were previously detected and are stored in the fire control computer.
"
If my memory isn't fooling me (a long time since I actually played eech \:\( )You should actually wait until the first radar HF reaches the top of it's trajectory and starts to fly downwards (you can detect that when the impact counter starts to count down) before switching to lock on the next target. Otherwise you'll redesignate your first missile....

#1652533 - 08/31/05 10:54 PM Re: EECH Training Mission Report #4  
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Smithcorp Offline
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Oz
These are great reports!

#1652534 - 09/01/05 03:55 AM Re: EECH Training Mission Report #4  

**DONOTDELETE**
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An excellent tutorial Beach !!! Thanx.

I'd like to add that you can close all your bay doors after you fire your HellFires. It'll knock down that radar profile again. I usually fire one, close doors, relocate and then shoot again.

I often "dump" my wingmen off at one end of the RP and then fly to the opposite side, tell them to engage my targets, then when the enemy "wakes-up" I hit them from the other side to confuse.


.


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