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RMAF v USAF in Cope Taufan

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The Royal Malaysian Air Force and

the United States Air Force engage in an air combat exercise called Cope TaufanHaris Hussain joins the ‘furball’

“FIGHT’s on! Fight’s on!”

 

 

‘Mogwai’ immediately picks up his target off the port side. He’s chugging along at a fairly fast clip. Together, the closure speed of both aircraft is nudging north of 900 knots.

As the two fighters merge and pass within an eyelash of each other in a blur of black and grey, Mogwai doesn’t even have time to flinch as he rolls the jet, yanks the control stick back into his gut and reefs his big fighter into an eye-wateringly tight left turn.

G-forces rip into his body and Mogwai sucks in a lungful of oxygen as he cranes his neck to keep his adversary, a United States Air Force Lockheed Martin F-22A Raptor, square in his sights.

He works the throttles and makes constant changes to the engine settings. His eyes are fixed on the target but one eyeball is cocked to the airspeed reading on his heads-up display (HUD). At this turn rate, he’s bleeding off airspeed and energy like they’re going out of style. Dogfighting is all about energy management.

The two jets are in a classic turning fight at 15,000 feet (4.57km) over the air combat range in Grik, Perak. Mogwai and ‘Smegs’, his weapons systems officer (whizzo in RMAF parlance), are flying the Royal Malaysian Air Force’s latest and most capable aircraft, the Sukhoi Su-30MKM Super Flanker multirole fighter.

Outside, the twin nozzles of their thrust-vectoring Lyulka AL-31FP engines crank up at a crazy angle and Mogwai begins to “walk up” the nose of his huge fighter onto the Raptor’s centre fuselage.

Up front, Mogwai eyeballs the Raptor, which is also blessed with thrust-vector control, but only in the pitch plane. The target designator box (TDB) on his HUD is locked onto the stealth fighter. The trick now is for Mogwai to bring the “pipper” or gunsight square inside the TDB before he can squeeze off a shot. In the back seat, Smegs provides a running commentary of the unfolding fight.

“Makan dia! Makan dia, beb! Lagi! Lagi! Lagi!” Smegs yells into the hot mike in his Ulmer oxygen mask. His job is that of part tactician, analysing the threat picture, part cheerleader, pushing his pilot on, and as an extra pair of eyes for Mogwai.

This particular evolution is a 1v1 (one-versus-one) engagement, which calls for the employment of short-range air-to-air missiles or guns. The Raptor is armed with the AIM-9M Sidewinder heat-homer and an internal, six-barrel, Gatling-type 20mm M-61A Vulcan cannon. The Super Flanker is carrying the super-agile Vympel R-73 Archer air-to-air missile and has the 30mm, single-barrel Gsh-301 cannon embedded in the starboard leading edge root extension (LERX).

Launching off from Fightertown RMAF Butterworth, this is the second engagement for the two fighters as part of the biggest air combat exercise in the country. Called Cope Taufan, the joint biennial exercise between the RMAF and the USAF is primarily to enhance bilateral training in a realistic environment, ramp up combined readiness, and improve interoperatability between the two fighting forces. In the first “hop” earlier, the advantage went to the Sukhoi boys. Because both aircraft were still hauling bags of gas, the exercise director gave the go-ahead for another fight.

‘GUNS,GUNS,GUNS!’

The outcome of a dogfight hinges on a number of things — the aircraft’s aerodynamic and engine performance, fuel load, the position of the sun, the individual aircrews’ learning curve and the ability to adapt and react to a fluid and rapidly changing set of circumstances. The advantage enjoyed by one aircrew could be lost and shift over to the adversary in the blink of an eye. A gun track can last only one or two seconds. Miss that shot and you’re toast.

Just as Mogwai is close to getting a gun solution on the Raptor, the USAF pilot rolls his jet level and pitches the nose up in a high-G manoeuvre. Vortices stream from his wing root as moisture is literally squeezed from the air. The American plugs the afterburners on his twin Pratt and Whitney F-119 turbofan engines and his nozzles belch out tongues of blue flame. He goes vertical and grabs sky like a homesick angel.

“Pacak! Pacak! Dia pacak, bai!” screams Smegs, as he instinctively grabs the speed handles on his instrument panel in anticipation of the onslaught of Gs. Pacak, in RMAF fighter lingo, is to go vertical. Mogwai sees the move but he’s nanoseconds too late. The Raptor has so much excess thrust that by the time Mogwai bangs on the throttles and selects Zone 5 on the afterburner, he and Smegs might just as well have been talking to themselves because the Raptor is looong gone...

STEEP LEARNING CURVE

Back on the ground, the RMAF pilots whom Life&Times spoke to said the training and experience they received in the two weeks of Cope Taufan was invaluable.

“The objective of these types of exercises is not to see who wins or loses. It’s more of an opportunity for us to learn new things and expand our mission scenarios and capabilities. It also gives us a chance to validate our procedures,” said a Super Flanker pilot.

Sometimes, they have to make things up as they go along. For instance, fighter pilots use what is called EM or energy manoeuvring charts to figure out how best to tackle an adversary.

“We had EM charts on the F-15s but had nothing on the Raptors, since it is still highly classified. So we had to rely on other sources, go online and even make educated guesses based on the aircraft design to come up with a plan to capitalise on its weaknesses,” added the Sukhoi driver.

“There were a lot of things that we learnt from the Americans. The use of large force employment, planning of strike packages and, overall, how to use our forces effectively were some of the lessons we learnt from Cope Taufan,” added an F/A-18D Hornet pilot with No 18 Squadron, based in Butterworth.

A MiG-29N fighter pilot with the famed Smokey Bandits squadron, home ported in RMAF Kuantan, summed it up best.

“Bro, both sides’ learning curve went right through the roof. On the first day! We both went home with a mutual and healthy respect for each other’s capabilities. And to have these (USAF) guys say that we were s*** hot is the biggest compliment you could give a fighter jock.”

Note: For security reasons, the call signs of the aircrew are fictitious and the engagement is a composite of several dogfights as recounted by RMAF pilots.

Star attractions

THE star attractions for this edition of Cope Taufan were undoubtedly the United States Air Force’s Lockheed Martin F-22A Raptor and the Royal Malaysian Air Force’s Sukhoi Su-30MKM Super Flanker multirole fighter.

 

For the Americans, the Su-30 is an exotic beast, blessed with immense power and agility. The Russian type’s nose-pointing ability, thanks to its thrust-vector and fly-by-wire flight control system, is second-to-none. 

If there’s one aircraft that can pose a serious threat to the USAF in the air-to-air arena, it would be this baby.

On the flip side, the prospect of going head-to-head with the world’s only fully operational, fifth-generation stealth fighter sent RMAF pilots into a tizzy. Many were itching to go up against this much-vaunted fighter. Although the results of the engagements were classified, it was learnt that several RMAF jet jocks acquitted themselves well against the Raptor.

The F-22As are from the 154th Wing, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii and are the only Air National Guard unit equipped with the type. They were joined by a number of Boeing F-15C Eagles from the 131st Fighter Squadron, 104th Fighter Wing, Barnes Air National Guard Base, Massachusetts, and other support units.

While RMAF pilots had tangled with the Eagles in previous exercises, Cope Taufan 2014 was the Raptors’ first outing in Southeast Asia.

Cope Taufan is a biennial large force employment exercise designed to improve the US’s and Malaysia’s combined readiness.This year’s edition from June 9-20, collectively involved close to 1,000 personnel.

 

 

http://www.nst.com.my/node/7204?d=1

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    • By Nyghtfall


      View File Malaysian Skyhawks - A-4PTM/TA-4PTM
      Malaysian Scooters - A-4PTM/TA-4PTM for SF2 - v1.0
      ==================================================
      *** any SF2 that has the A-4F for the cockpit and DLC019 required for the A-4L model ***
      The Tentera Udara Diraja Malaysia (TUDM, or Royal Malaysian Air Force) ordered 88 surplus Skyhawks (25 A-4Cs and 63 A-4Ls) in 1980. The TUDM wanted these planes refurbished into 54 single-seaters and 14 two-seaters. However, the US government placed a temporary hold on the sale, and escalating costs due to inflation resulted in a cut in the order to only 40 aircraft.
      Grumman Aerospace at St. Augustine, Florida was given the contract to perform the rework on the TUDM Skyhawks. The rework included a complete rewiring, plus two extra underwing hardpoints similar to A-4E and later Skyhawks. A refurbished J65-W-20 engine was fitted. Updated electronics were also fitted, including the AN/ARN-118 TACAN, a SAAB RGS-2A lead computing weapons sight, a Lear Siegler altitude heading reference system, and an AN/ARC-164 UHF transceiver. The A-4Cs were fitted with the dorsal avionics hump. aswell as wing spoilers. A drag chute was installed below the tailpipe. A new canopy was fitted, which was slightly bulged at the sides. Some of the aircraft received preparations for the Hughes AN/ASB-19 Angles Rate Bombing System, aswell as provisions for AGM-65 Maverick missiles, but both were actually never used with these planes. Provisions for the use of AIM-9 Sidewinders were incorporated on the outer wing pylons. In the end, Grumman modified 34 aircraft. They were assigned the designation A-4PTM (where PTM stood for Peculiar to Malaysia, other sources say Persekutan Tanah Melayu - Federation of Malay States). The A-4PTM flew for the first time on April 12, 1984 and modified planes were assigned the TUDM serials of M32-07 to M32-40.
      Six A-4C/A-4L airframes were converted into two-place Skyhawks. This was done by inserting a 28-inch plug into the fuselage. Canopy and tandem seating arrangements were generally similar to those of the Douglas-built TA-4s. These planes were designated TA-4PTM. The TA-4PTM also featured five underwing pylons. The first TA-4PTM took off on its maiden flight on August 28, 1984. The six TA-4PTMs were given the TUDM serials of M32-01 to M32-06. Since they were based on the earlier A-4C/L, the 6 planes were among the few two-seaters, that used the J65 engine (together with early TA-4S from Singapore).
      Deliveries began in 1985 and were completed by February 1986. A-4PTMs served with No 6 and 9 Squadrons, both based at Kuantan AB, while TA-4PTMs served only with No 6 Squadron. Their service with the TUDM was quite brief. In 1989, it was announced that they were going to be withdrawn from service and replaced by British Aerospace Hawk Mk.208s in late 1994. Six Skyhawks were retained as tanker aircraft, using a centerline Douglas D-704 external buddy tank.
      By September 1999, the TUDM Skyhawks were no longer operational, and were derelict at the Royal Malaysian Air Force Base at Kuantan.
      Little information are available about those planes, so I tried to come as close as possible to the real ones. Cockpit is a heavily modded A-4F-cockpit modded around the fact, that the radarscreen was deleted and many intruments were rearranged to fill the space. According to Lt. Khoo those planes didn't have any countermeasures (no ECM, no Chaff/Flare-Dispensers) and probably no RWR. To add some survivability I deceided to leave RWR in the mod. ECM and Dispenser is commented out in the data.ini, so if you want to add those, just remove the //-bits.
      If you now ask, why the hell do we need a mod of this plane, if it barely can survive in the timeframe it was used? We do not, but I made it, because I could :P I like this plane, because it always was one of the lesser known variants of this well-known plane and for me it is one of the best-looking Skyhawks out there. So, I hope you have some fun with the Jungle Scooter. :)

      Installation
      ============
      1. unzip to a temporary folder
      2. open "Put_Content_In_Your_MOOD_Folder" and do as you were told, if asked to overwrite, say 'yes' :P
      3. enjoy!
      If the Squadrons are missing in the loadout screen, you should add the following lines in the squadronlist.ini ("<mod>\pilotdata"-folder) with XXX changed to the next free numbers:
      [SquadronXXX]
      Name=Malaysia_6SQN
      DisplayName=6th Squadron
      Nation=Malaysia
      [SquadronXXX]
      Name=Malaysia_9SQN
      DisplayName=9th Squadron
      Nation=Malaysia

      Credits
      =======
      - Thirdwire and TK for a great game, models and the cockpit-parts I used.
      - Fracture - TA-4 model
      - Alejandro - Escapac seat
      - FastCargo - FakePilot
      - OldDiego - VPAF-Pilot-model
      - ravenclaw_007 - LAU-3-Rocketpods + Rockets
      - myself - all other work, including 3D-models (tanks, pylons, addons, refuelingpod)
      If you created the ????-marked items, please contact me, so I can add your name in the credits! If I forgot someone, please PM me too!

      Thanks
      ======
      - Crusader for valuable information regarding weaponsstations-arrangement, I found in the forum, aswell as Skyhawk cockpit.ini-tweaks.
      - mue for his great LODViewer, which was a big help while creating the camos and placing stuff.
      - Lt. Khoo, a former RMAF Skyhawk Pilot, that provided valuable information.
      - Paul Ooi from http://www.paulooimodelworks.com/, that brought me in contact with Lt. Khoo.
      - cocas for help learning 3D-stuff!
      - RussoUK2004 initial conversion of the pylon-models
      - denisoliveira infos and help adjusting fakepilots to match the original models look.

      P.S.
      ====
      If you have any problems with this skin or have suggestions and hints, feel free to PM me.

      Disclaimer
      ==========
      This mod or parts of it may not be used for payware of any kind. If you use something, give proper credit.

      25_01_2016 to 01_10_2017
      Submitter Nyghtfall Submitted 10/01/2017 Category A-4  
    • By Nyghtfall
      Malaysian Scooters - A-4PTM/TA-4PTM for SF2 - v1.0
      ==================================================
      *** any SF2 that has the A-4F for the cockpit and DLC019 required for the A-4L model ***
      The Tentera Udara Diraja Malaysia (TUDM, or Royal Malaysian Air Force) ordered 88 surplus Skyhawks (25 A-4Cs and 63 A-4Ls) in 1980. The TUDM wanted these planes refurbished into 54 single-seaters and 14 two-seaters. However, the US government placed a temporary hold on the sale, and escalating costs due to inflation resulted in a cut in the order to only 40 aircraft.
      Grumman Aerospace at St. Augustine, Florida was given the contract to perform the rework on the TUDM Skyhawks. The rework included a complete rewiring, plus two extra underwing hardpoints similar to A-4E and later Skyhawks. A refurbished J65-W-20 engine was fitted. Updated electronics were also fitted, including the AN/ARN-118 TACAN, a SAAB RGS-2A lead computing weapons sight, a Lear Siegler altitude heading reference system, and an AN/ARC-164 UHF transceiver. The A-4Cs were fitted with the dorsal avionics hump. aswell as wing spoilers. A drag chute was installed below the tailpipe. A new canopy was fitted, which was slightly bulged at the sides. Some of the aircraft received preparations for the Hughes AN/ASB-19 Angles Rate Bombing System, aswell as provisions for AGM-65 Maverick missiles, but both were actually never used with these planes. Provisions for the use of AIM-9 Sidewinders were incorporated on the outer wing pylons. In the end, Grumman modified 34 aircraft. They were assigned the designation A-4PTM (where PTM stood for Peculiar to Malaysia, other sources say Persekutan Tanah Melayu - Federation of Malay States). The A-4PTM flew for the first time on April 12, 1984 and modified planes were assigned the TUDM serials of M32-07 to M32-40.
      Six A-4C/A-4L airframes were converted into two-place Skyhawks. This was done by inserting a 28-inch plug into the fuselage. Canopy and tandem seating arrangements were generally similar to those of the Douglas-built TA-4s. These planes were designated TA-4PTM. The TA-4PTM also featured five underwing pylons. The first TA-4PTM took off on its maiden flight on August 28, 1984. The six TA-4PTMs were given the TUDM serials of M32-01 to M32-06. Since they were based on the earlier A-4C/L, the 6 planes were among the few two-seaters, that used the J65 engine (together with early TA-4S from Singapore).
      Deliveries began in 1985 and were completed by February 1986. A-4PTMs served with No 6 and 9 Squadrons, both based at Kuantan AB, while TA-4PTMs served only with No 6 Squadron. Their service with the TUDM was quite brief. In 1989, it was announced that they were going to be withdrawn from service and replaced by British Aerospace Hawk Mk.208s in late 1994. Six Skyhawks were retained as tanker aircraft, using a centerline Douglas D-704 external buddy tank.
      By September 1999, the TUDM Skyhawks were no longer operational, and were derelict at the Royal Malaysian Air Force Base at Kuantan.
      Little information are available about those planes, so I tried to come as close as possible to the real ones. Cockpit is a heavily modded A-4F-cockpit modded around the fact, that the radarscreen was deleted and many intruments were rearranged to fill the space. According to Lt. Khoo those planes didn't have any countermeasures (no ECM, no Chaff/Flare-Dispensers) and probably no RWR. To add some survivability I deceided to leave RWR in the mod. ECM and Dispenser is commented out in the data.ini, so if you want to add those, just remove the //-bits.
      If you now ask, why the hell do we need a mod of this plane, if it barely can survive in the timeframe it was used? We do not, but I made it, because I could :P I like this plane, because it always was one of the lesser known variants of this well-known plane and for me it is one of the best-looking Skyhawks out there. So, I hope you have some fun with the Jungle Scooter. :)

      Installation
      ============
      1. unzip to a temporary folder
      2. open "Put_Content_In_Your_MOOD_Folder" and do as you were told, if asked to overwrite, say 'yes' :P
      3. enjoy!
      If the Squadrons are missing in the loadout screen, you should add the following lines in the squadronlist.ini ("<mod>\pilotdata"-folder) with XXX changed to the next free numbers:
      [SquadronXXX]
      Name=Malaysia_6SQN
      DisplayName=6th Squadron
      Nation=Malaysia
      [SquadronXXX]
      Name=Malaysia_9SQN
      DisplayName=9th Squadron
      Nation=Malaysia

      Credits
      =======
      - Thirdwire and TK for a great game, models and the cockpit-parts I used.
      - Fracture - TA-4 model
      - Alejandro - Escapac seat
      - FastCargo - FakePilot
      - OldDiego - VPAF-Pilot-model
      - ravenclaw_007 - LAU-3-Rocketpods + Rockets
      - myself - all other work, including 3D-models (tanks, pylons, addons, refuelingpod)
      If you created the ????-marked items, please contact me, so I can add your name in the credits! If I forgot someone, please PM me too!

      Thanks
      ======
      - Crusader for valuable information regarding weaponsstations-arrangement, I found in the forum, aswell as Skyhawk cockpit.ini-tweaks.
      - mue for his great LODViewer, which was a big help while creating the camos and placing stuff.
      - Lt. Khoo, a former RMAF Skyhawk Pilot, that provided valuable information.
      - Paul Ooi from http://www.paulooimodelworks.com/, that brought me in contact with Lt. Khoo.
      - cocas for help learning 3D-stuff!
      - RussoUK2004 initial conversion of the pylon-models
      - denisoliveira infos and help adjusting fakepilots to match the original models look.

      P.S.
      ====
      If you have any problems with this skin or have suggestions and hints, feel free to PM me.

      Disclaimer
      ==========
      This mod or parts of it may not be used for payware of any kind. If you use something, give proper credit.

      25_01_2016 to 01_10_2017
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