What's a usual SA-10 defense system? Are there other SAM sites with/around it? I don't want to start a campaign for it, but the HARM TE does not have a -10. Any chance you guys can whip up a quick TE? ricnunes?
I guess that theOden beat me with a TE scenario. By the way sorry for not having seen these latest set of posts (with you "requesting" a TE with the SA-10) but I've been busy with work.
Actually I'm taking a break from my work and thus I took the opportunity to reply.
Well about the SA-10 (Russian name S-300) yes, it's a very dangerous system since like theOden said when a missile launched at you by this system your RWR won't alert you! This is because the modeled system or the SA-10 missile variant modeled in Falcon BMS uses a guidance system called "Track-via-Missile" or TVM. In real life there are other SA-10 missile variants which uses other guidance systems such as Command-guidance (similar to the SA-2, SA-3, etc...), Semi-active radar homing or SARH (similar to the AIM-7 Sparrow, AA-10, SA-6, etc...) and there's even a missile variant which uses Active radar homing (similar to the AMRAAM or AA-12) - all of these as expected should allow your RWR at some point to give you some sort of a "missile launch warning" .
However for some reason in BMS you only have SA-10 missiles which use the "Track-via-Missile" guidance method. I don't know why, perhaps it was considered to be the more "challenging" (since it's the only variant which doesn't alert a missile launch on the RWR) or perhaps it's the most used variant in real life? Perhaps both?
Anyway, just to give you an idea about how the "Track-via-Missile" guidance works is the following:
- IMO, it seems to be some sort of a combination of the Inertial System similar to the one used for example in the AMRAAM where the missile simply follows a waypoint which should be more or less where the missile should intercept the target (this is what the missile follows for the most part of its flight path). This waypoint is updated/uploaded to the missile (in flight) by the SA-10 ground station from time to time (I believe this time is measured in seconds but I'm not sure). On the final stages of the fight path the missile will use a similar guidance system to the Semi-active radar homing or SARH where the missile follows the reflected radar waves emitted from the SA-10 radar (Flap Lid) which is still in "search mode" and thus not giving any special alert to the target's RWR. Also and since the missile is already very close the target (flying previously thru inertial/waypoint system) there's no need for the SA-10 radar/ground station to change its radar mode (for example to something similar to STT) because the SA-10 missile's seeker will be "sensitive" enough to detect reflected radar waves (even from the SA-10 Radar - Flap Lid - in a "simple" search mode).
The Patriot uses a similar guidance/system. I could be wrong but I think that the Patriot is even more dangerous since based on a few personal experiments it looks like the Patriot is either more "precise" or less vulnerable to opposing ECM, but again I could be wrong. But yes, the SA-10 should be by far the most dangerous SAM threat (at least land based) of all Russian origin equipment.
I found the SA-10 for the first time (in a campaign) in the KTO (default/stock Korea scenario) "Rolling Fire" campaign when Russia and China entered the war (which happens later on this campaign). In this "Rolling Fire" campaign (KTO) North Korea don't have SA-10s BUT Russia and China both have them and you'll find them in missions where the objective is to attack targets inside Russia and China.
By having a quick look at TE, a (one) SA-10 air defence "battalion" (which you can only find under "Soviet" equipment/side) is consisted by the following:
- 4xSA-10 Launchers
- 1xFlap Lid Radar (the search and guidance radar - destroy this and the entire SA-10 Launchers goes "out of action")
- 3xZPU-2 Anti-aircraft guns
- 6xSupport Trucks (with some Russian weird name
Finally, my advise to engage these SA-10s is the following:
1- Certify that you have your ECM turned on (and if you're flying for the Americans/South Koreans, certify that you carry an ECM pod on your F-16).
2- If you have standoff (long range) weapons carry and use them and stay afar as possible from the SA-10 missile site. If you have SEAD support let them deal with the SA-10 first and in the meanwhile keep your distance from the SA-10s and fly with them either at your 10 or 2 o'clock (and again with your ECM on) - I found this way that the SA-10 will have a hard time hitting you.
3- If you know the SA-10 position previously and with precision (during the briefing) consider the use of Small Diameter Bombs (SDBs) and together with marking the targets (as waypoint) on the briefing, namely the Flap Lid radar, engage them from afar with the SDBs. HARMs may also be a good alternative but I still haven't used them against SA-10s.
I hope this helps (and sorry for the long post).