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fireengineer

Rearward firing missile?

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Did anyone hear of a rearward firing R-73 Archer? I found this article about the AIM-132 and in it was a line or two about the Russian version. Here is a clip of the article and a link.

 

'It is worth noting that over-the-shoulder launching is a fundamentally different approach to that taken by the Russians, who have addressed this problem by producing a rearward firing variant of the R-73 Archer, the R-73R, which uses an additional booster to overcome the aircraft's forward velocity. The rearward firing Archer is cued by the Flanker's NIIP N-O12 tail warning radar.'

 

http://www.ausairpower.net/API-ASRAAM-Analysis.html

 

Just like Clint in Firefox, Sci-fi to Sci-fact......

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It's been known about for a long time. However, from what I understand it was never deployed operationally. First, you need a different missile. Second, a different launch rail. Third, a different fire control system. Fourth, it means that missile is useless if the target is in front...

 

Or, you could enhance current missiles with vectored thrust/large control surfaces, high off boresight and 'Lock On After Launch (LOAL)' combined with HMS capability. Guess which one everyone does...

 

FC

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Right, making a forward-firing missile so good it can hit targets behind you will ALSO make it much better for targets in front of or beside you. Making it rear-only limits what you can use it for. More likely to put them on bigger planes. Think how tough a Bear or Blinder with rear-facing IRMs would be!! You'd be forced to attack BVR only!

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I think the russian missile was intended for the Su-34 fighterbombers. But never became operational.

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