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  1. This image has been resized. Click this bar to view the full image. The original image is sized 1700x879. This image has been resized. Click this bar to view the full image. The original image is sized 1500x774. Scan, Lock, Fire! Heatblur F-14 Radar & Weapons Development Update Dear All, The entire Heatblur team is very hard at work on both the F-14, Viggen and other new projects. While we’ve tried to keep you up to date with smaller updates over the past few months; now may be a good time to give you a better overview of some of the systems development on the F-14! Much of the focus currently lies with high level, core elements of the F-14 that made it such a valuable replacement for many aircraft in the Navy and probably the most formidable and diverse fighter aircraft of its time. Much effort is currently being spent on our recreation of the Hughes Airborne Weapons Group 9 (or AWG-9), it’s various modes of operation and weapons, as well as continuing the development on JESTER AI, our AI RIO pilot companion! The AWG-9, heart of the F-14 Tomcat “The AWG-9 is made up of a radar, computer, interface between AWG-9 and weapons and the associated displays” James Perry Stevenson writes in the Aero Series 25 book “Grumman F-14 Tomcat”. He says further: “The primary purpose of the F-14 is to act as a weapons platform. To that end, then, the primary purpose of the AWG-9 is to control the four weapons it carries – the gun, the Sidewinder missile (AIM-9), the Sparrow missile (AIM-7) and the Phoenix missile (AIM-54). The AWG-9 weapon control system uses inputs from the radar and in conjunction with the computer, establishes target identities, establishes priorities, processes data for intercept geometry, establishes launch envelopes and monitors some of the F-14’s other black boxes.” What really set the AWG-9 apart for its time was the many functions it offered to both Pilot and RIO that no other aircraft had at that time. The AWG-9 radar can use both Pulse Radar and Pulse Doppler modes with six basic modes, which in its time made it absolutely second to none. These six main modes are: PDS: Pulse Doppler Search, RWS: Range While Scan, TWS: Track While Scan, PDSTT: Pulse Doppler Single Target Track, PS: Pulse Search, PSTT: Pulse Single Target Track. The AWG-9 also offers some ACM modes that would allow the crew to quickly lock onto a target in a high G, maneuvering fight, including: PLM: Pilot Lockon Mode (the pilot could lock on a target directly ahead of him), VSL: Vertical Scan Lockon (A vertical beam ahead high between +15° and +55° or ahead low between -15° and + 25° elevation and 4.8° azimuth from the aircraft datum line) MRL: Manual Rapid Lockon (Also called NRL or NFO Rapid Lockon) - which would give the RIO the possibility to manually steer the radar with his Hand Control Unit (or “HCU”) towards a visual target and lock it. This mode was rarely used. In addition the F-14 had a separate antenna for AIM-7 Flood Mode, which could be used in a situation when the radar would fail- alas this was considered fairly useless. (It has been described by our SMEs as a “Holy-shit-bad-idea-mode”, and pilots weren’t scored a kill during training if they used this mode). All of these radar modes have now been implemented and their functionality improved over the past few months. To some extent, JESTER AI is now able to operate some of these modes as well. Modeling the AWG-9 in great detail will make the experience of being an F-14 RIO great fun and challenging- as well as accurately representing the real world effectiveness of the F-14. All 4 air to air weapons of the F-14, both provided by ED (AIM-9M, AIM-9P and AIM-7M) and Heatblur (AIM-54A-Mk47, AIM-54A-Mk60 and AIM-54C-Mk47), as well as the M61 Vulcan Cannon, are currently implemented and available. These weapons constitute the core of the early F-14 experience. Sidewinder capability in the F-14 is fairly standard if you’re familiar with other western aircraft. The sidewinders support active cooling (must be activated on ACM panel to get a tone) and the SEAM (Sidewinder Expanded Acquisition Mode) function. In SEAM slave mode, the Sidewinder’s seeker head is slaved to the target that is locked with either the radar or TCS (Television Camera System) and starts tracking the target before the missile comes off the rail. The seeker can be commanded to SEAM lock by a pilot HOTAS button. The aircraft can carry a total of 4 Sidewinder missiles on 4 separate wing stations. Some rear aspect TCS snippets. Click to Enlarge! One of the most unique features of the F-14 is the optical sensor known as the Television Camera System. Apart from the ability to track and lock a target with the Radar, the F-14 provides the ability to observe camera footage of targets through the TCS. Acquisition of targets for visual identification on the TCS is super easy. You can slave the TCS to your currently locked radar target, or vice-versa if you’ve acquired a target using only your TCS. The RIO’s main displays for the interpretation of data delivered by the AWG-9 are the Detail Data Display (or “DDD”) and the Tactical Information Display (or “TID”). While we’ll go through these displays in more detail in upcoming updates, videos and the manual - one can simplify the distinction and note that the DDD is akin to a raw radar scope display, while the TID is a computer processed overview of that same data. Thus, a skilled operator will have to be proficient in using both the DDD and TID displays to achieve maximum efficacy. A typical TID display repeated on the Pilots HSI (placeholder cockpit!) The pilot is also equipped with two displays, the Vertical Display Indicator (or “VDI”) and the Horizontal Situation Display (or “HSD”). The pilot can select what these two indicators should display. The HSD can, for example, display navigational data, ECM (RWR) data - or serve as a “repeater” for the RIOs TID display. Note though, that keeping an eye on TID data and flying effectively is a tough challenge! So a good pilot will know when to trust his RIO. The VDI displays an artificially generated horizon, steering cues, navigational data or can also be switched to display TCS video footage. The VDI is sometimes also referred to as a “Heads DOWN Display”, since it can largely reproduce almost everything shown on the HUD. The DDD (Detail Data Display) and TID (Tactical Information Display) The DDD is really the lightning rod for all things AWG-9. A skilled RIO making great use of the DDD will make the F-14 an amazingly effective weapons platform. Being skillful in distinguishing single from multiple targets, picking out targets amongst ground and weather clutter and defeating defensive aircraft maneuvers is challenging. The F-14 radar controls allow the RIO to finely tune the radar and DDD display to really pick out targets with great precision (and in many cases, where other more automated radars of the era would fail!). In all Pulse Doppler modes, the vertical axis on the DDD shows target blips on a range-rate (relative radial velocity) scale, which can be somewhat difficult to interpret. A compiled example of AWG-9 Post-Processed Targets. Click to Enlarge! The DDD also, due to its nature as a raw type radar display, means that it has rudimentary ground mapping radar capability! We’ve further refined our ground radar technology which we created for the AJS-37 Viggen. While ground mapping is, perhaps, not as useful in an F-14 as in the Viggen- it can still be a helpful tool in bad weather, navigation and low light flight situations. The SMEs we’ve spoken to considered it to be an invaluable tool at times, especially in poor weather situations. A compiled example of AWG-9 Ground Mapping capability. Click to Enlarge! As important as the DDD is, it is however only really half of the equation. The TID is a large 9 inch circular display (sometimes aptly named the “Fishbowl”), and will show tracked targets (in RWS, TWS, STT modes) with velocity vectors (TWS and STT only). Targets can be “hooked” on the TID using the HCU (Hand Control Unit, basically the RIO’s “Joystick”, and additional detailed info like range, bearing, heading, ground speed etc. can be called up on the display depending on selected settings and the current radar mode. The TID can also show navigational data like waypoints, and marked ground positions relative to the aircraft, and is thus like a simple TAD system, but without a moving map. The most complete track file of the target in the scanning modes will be given in TWS, which can track up to 24 targets simultaneously and fire up to 6 Phoenix missiles. In TWS the targets are not locked, as they are in the PSTT and PDSTT modes. Instead, the computer tracks them by taking their last seen position and predicting the new position of the target in 2 second update intervals. During these updates it tracks the target’s information and can calculate the heading vector, ground speed and other required parameters. This gives the F-14 the advantage that its opponents will not know that they are being tracked by its radar, as their RWR will not register a radar lock. A compiled example of some AWG-9 TID Screens. Click to Enlarge! The limitation of the TWS mode is that only the Phoenix missile can be fired with guidance, and though it provides the same detection range as RWS (around 90NM for fighter sized aircraft under ideal aspect conditions, where 1NM=1.852km), the field of view is tied to the 2 second update and thus limited to a 2 BAR 40° or 4 BAR 20° search. TWS also has both manual and auto modes implemented, which means that the computer will prioritize targets automatically and suggest launch queues which the RIO can use to line up his targets. The TWS auto mode will also adjust the scan pattern by itself. The biggest field of view is provided in RWS which can be set to a 10, 20, 40 or 65 degrees left and right search pattern from centerline in either 1, 2, 4 or 8 BAR search mode, with the biggest pattern using a full 13 seconds to update (but covering a truly massive volume of sky) and the smallest pattern updating in a quarter of a second. While PDS provides only range rate (and thus cannot display targets on the TID), RWS provides range and range rate. PDS and RWS can be used to launch missiles in boresight modes. PDSTT and PSTT provide launch modes for all missiles and the gun. PS however provides a smaller detection range and is useful against beaming or notching targets. This comes as a trade off though, as it is very poor at detecting targets in front of ground clutter. Non Post-Processed radar returns in Pulse Search modes differ greatly. Click to Enlarge! The various radar modes also have somewhat differing parameters for range resolution, range rate resolution and angle resolution, depending on factors such as pulse length, pulse compression, pulse repetition frequency etc. This comes into play especially when trying to distinguish targets in close formations at longer ranges. We believe we have made a reasonable emulation of this within the confines of the DCS environment. Datalink is a hefty development task for us, and we’ve made good progress on this particular feature of the AWG-9. Currently, the F-14 receives data linked targets from the E-2 Hawkeye, other F-14 Tomcats, and U.S. Carriers. Eventually, commands like WILCO, CANTCO and other small bits of information will be able to be shared among flights. Communication systems, such as the Datalink, of course adhere to the laws of physics and both occlusion and range play a part in whether datalinked targets will be transmitted. Another aspect of Datalink that is already included is the Automated Carrier Landing (“ACL”), which is one of the examples how the AWG-9 can also provide navigational functions. We hope that this general overview of what parts we have already implemented of the powerful AWG-9 is giving you an idea of the many possibilities the F-14 will provide for you both in the Pilot and RIO role. Fighting in the F-14, be it BVR, WVR or BFM is already a very fun, dynamic and challenging experience. We’ve barely scratched the surface in this post when it comes to the full gamut of features available in the AWG-9, DDD and TID! The complexities and depth of so many modes of operation and available inputs and output details are best left to future updates and the accompanying documentation. Which in the end brings us to the question: how are we going to use all of that without a RIO in the back seat? The answer is of course Jester-AI, and this is probably a good moment to go through the latest on your AI companion! The Jester-AI – your very own RIO For those of you not aware yet (are there any of you out there? ) JESTER AI, is our proprietary AI, designed specifically for multicrew aircraft. Our goal with Jester is to make him (or.. it? Is that mean to JESTER?) both feel alive, adaptive and flexible, but also realistic in terms of the limitations and capabilities a real RIO would have. Jester will not make it easier for you than any real human experienced RIO would in Multi Crew, and we've already spent a lot of development time and resources to model things like a rudimentary human component model, which accurate models where the RIO is looking, what switches he is manipulating and more. The ultimate goal and plan is to make Jester capable enough that you won’t have to jump into the back seat at all, as long as you don’t want to do something very specific. A lot of effort has been put into making the underlying framework for Jester is as capable as possible. This allows us to create complex behavioral trees that dictate Jester’s behavioural patterns and actions in many different situations that might arise due to internal cockpit events (e.g. RWR spiking, fuel reaching bingo state), player interaction (e.g. telling Jester to lock onto the closest enemy), or external events (e.g. Jester having visual on a bogey or noticing a missile launch). At this time, we’ve recorded well over 2.000+ different voice files, ranging from single numbers, to entire phrases. A big challenge for us has been the creation of a voice library and voice synthesis system which will allow for more naturally generated procedural statements. In our early design discussions, we decided to opt for a combined approach of sentence building, as well as having many complete phrases and sentences. In this way, we’re able to combine the flexibility of a fully dynamic system with the authenticity of entire phrases. The entire Heatblur team would like to thank Grayson Frohberg for putting his amazing voice to great use, and putting in a monumental effort in recording thousands of voice lines. You’ll all be grow to be very familiar with Grayson’s beautiful timbre a few weeks into flying the F-14. We expect that Jester’s list of capabilities will be somewhat limited at early access launch, but by having focused on the main underlying structure and behaviour trees, we are now able to rapidly grow its’ functionality. The last couple of weeks we’ve focused on adding BVR capabilities and in the near future we will switch over to WVR, start and landing procedures, as well as navigation. Here’s a sample of what JESTER is already capable of: Using TCS and Radar STT modes Spot and IFF bogeys both by radar and TCS, including making BRAA calls The ability to spot and call out incoming missiles detected by RWR The ability to react to RWR detected threats, both surface- and airborne, as well as their type and direction He visually detects missile launches and calls them out (when in his field of view) You can order him through a command dial to look into a certain direction You can order him to lock differently prioritized targets, lock the closest or next bandit, lock the next target ahead, launch the next missile, break the STT lock and much more. He will identify the target type via TCS in BVR He will advise you to break if he spots the missile very close (and in time of course) If spotted properly and in time he will advise you the direction to break He will call out SAM launches and threats both visually and in RWR He is able to call out groups of targets He provides the player with an action system that works like a radial command that can be bound to both HOTAS and Keyboard. The command radial menu allows the player to easily navigate through the command menus and submenus in a very short time. The commands build on each other logically, so that the player has a quick and easy overview and does not lose much thought navigating the commands. In time we will also add more modalities for Jester that will give the Player a deeper impression of having a “living RIO” in the back seat with a great range of possibilities for the Pilot to interact with the AI. This image has been resized. Click this bar to view the full image. The original image is sized 1500x774. That’s about all we have for this update! We've dropped some sneak peeks at what the art team has been hard at work on in this post, and it's likely the next update will focus just on that. Stay tuned! We're super excited. As mentioned in various community outlets recently; we’re also hoping to do a “Road to Release” type update soon, where we can better update you on the state of the F-14, our current projections for release and what is left to do until we consider the aircraft to be feature complete for Early Access. We say this a lot; but the F-14 has been a massive undertaking for us, and the amount of time and effort spent on recreating this aircraft will hopefully be readily apparent throughout early access and into release. Thank you for staying so patient and all of your support! Sincerely, Heatblur Simulations This image has been resized. Click this bar to view the full image. The original image is sized 1750x901. __________________ Nicholas Dackard Director | Lead Artist Heatblur Simulations https://www.facebook.com/heatblur/ https://forums.eagle.ru/showthread.php?t=196159
  2. Was that removed as well? - not seeing anything
  3. Wait. Thirdwire made a space game?

    no sorry....hopefully someone has.....anyone?
  4. Back in 2012, Thirdwire fans awaited with baited breath the latest release of the Strike Fighters 2 series and what new goodies it would bring to everyone. As it turned out the game was quite a departure from the previous four titles and wasn’t just the old engine with a new terrain and new objects. For most, many of the new features and changes added to the series and bought some hope for the future, whereas some features were less promising. Starting off with the good points then.......... The Setting The game takes place primarily over Iceland with its cold war airbases such as Keflavik NAS and perhaps gives us a bit more options for Cold War scenarios than doing the South Atlantic (Falklands) which some may have thought the obvious choice. The real Keflavik in real Iceland! (Wikipedia) New Terrain New with SF2NA came a bold new attempt at a more modern LOD based terrain engine utilising DX10 instead of the older DX9. The water looked amazing: Iceland's man made shoreline! And the runways are even shaped like the actual ones on Iceland instead of the generic bases from the previous four titles. More on this later…….. Fed up with the hot weather the RAAF decide to holiday in Iceland New music For a fresh new start, new menu music, that wasn’t too bad actually – I never replaced it! Yes I realise that is a post cold war shot! Fleet Defender With this release we got the first F-14A from Thirdwire, although this in itself was not ground breaking because there was a very good Mirage Factory F-14 set available as well. It was the Avionics this brought that was the big plus, including support for Active Radar missiles, and a TWS mode that could support multiple simultaneous shots. On the other hand Soviet bombers now came with a ton of anti-ship cruise missiles, jammers and countermeasures. Catch us if you can! Join the Navy Okay so a load of new ships and weapons in this release………and not just a set of new objects, but new ways they could be used in game: · Carrier groups and support groups in campaigns and single missions · Static aircraft on decks · Ships firing missiles and guns to shoot down cruise missiles and aircraft · More roles for aircraft including AWACs and Naval recon If you liked flying the TW A-4 then the TW F-14 is rather less agile and more difficult to fly in comparison Here is a list of the new objects the games came with: Ships: · CGN-36 California class Cruiser · CVN-68 Nimitz Class Aircraft Carrier · Gearing FRAM IB class Destroyer · Kashin class Destroyer · Kiev class Aircraft Carrier · Knox class Frigate · Krivak I class Frigate · Krivak II class Frigate · LCC-19 Blue Ridge class Amphibious Command Ship · LHA-1 Tarawa class Amphibious Assault Ship · LPD-4 Austin class Amphibious Transport Dock · Oliver Hazard Perry class Frigate · Oliver Hazard Perry (82) class Frigate · Spruance class Destroyer · Spruance (82) class Destroyer Weapons · AIM-54A Phoenix · SA-N-3 Goblet (M-11 Shtorm) SAM · SA-N-1B Goa SAM · SA-N-4 Gecko SAM · RIM-2F Terrier SAM · RIM-7E/H Sea Sparrow SAM · RIM-66B Standard SAM · K10S (AS-2 Kipper) Cruise Missile · KH22 (AS-4 Kitchen) Cruise Missile · KSR5 (AS-6 Kingfish) Cruise Missile Bears with Flares! The Campaign and missions A big change from the previous titles and perhaps more game like in some respects in the way it was essentially fleet verses fleet. The single missions were more limited due to engine changes and lack of relevant land based targets. If you like Naval intercept missions or ones where you attack the Soviet fleet then it should be right up your street. F-4K - More challenging in the intercept role than the F-14 A-4G - Even more challenging! New Aircraft with SF2 NA (Drool) Grumman F-14A Tomcat Grumman F-14A_77 Tomcat Vought A-7E_74 Corsair II Grumman A-6E Intruder (No Pit) Grumman A-6E_79 Intruder (No Pit) Grumman E-2C Hawkeye (No Pit) Grumman EA-6B Prowler (No Pit) Tu-16K-10-26 Badger C (No Pit) Tu-16K-26 Badger G (No Pit) Tu-16K-26_73 Badger G (No Pit) Tu-16P Badger J (No Pit) Tu-16P_72 Badger J (No Pit) Tu-16RM-1 Badger D (No Pit) Tu-22KD Blinder B (No Pit) Tu-22M2 Backfire B (No Pit) Tu-22M3 Backfire C (No Pit) Tu-22PD Blinder E (No Pit) Tu-22RD Blinder C (No Pit) Tu-95RT Bear D (No Pit) Yak-38 Forger A (No Pit Merging Yes the game can still be merged with the other 4 titles, expansion packs and DLCs! You may also find that a lot of my DLCs live in Iceland exclusively. That is a Yak-38 Forger landing on the Kiev don't you know Now lets look at some of the more controversial additions. Mr AWACs controller Rejoice for Red Crown woman has been replaced by Mr AWACs controller guy! I don’t know how many were pleased to see the E-2 AWACs get blown out of the sky on a regular basis (or even shot it down yourselves) – if they were it was probably down to the guys somewhat laid back voice. How exactly Thirdwire managed to find or even consider using this guys voice for this role is known only to them but it was not on any kind of professional level. Luckily there is a set of modded voice files to replace this blight on the series. We really don't care about your situation..... The Terrain Engine Despite DX10 and gorgeous sea there were a few issues with the terrain which you could surmise were due to having to release the game earlier than expected. · The frame rate was considerably worse. · You needed DX10 capability to run it. · The land was a barren wasteland with unrealistic looking terrain and coastlines – not befitting a sim or a game. · The files for modding it were locked away so potentially no more 3rd party terrains. Whether Thirdwire intended to sell us future Terrain DLCs is still an unknown. But the sea was nice. Luckily the game still supported the older terrain format so Gerwin did put out an old format Iceland terrain and Stary put out some enhanced tiles that I use to this day without the new sea. This mod worked in DX9 and had far better frame rates all round. Some related Mods:
  5. You should just need to change the loadout.ini file for the aircraft.
  6. DCS World 1.5.7 Update 5 This week we have released a fifth update to DCS World version 1.5.7. The primary feature of this update is to fix the server crash that could happen if a client has been disconnected by time-out. You can find the complete DCS World 1.5.7 Update 5 changelog on the DCS forum. DCS: Strait of Hormuz Map Teaser In addition to the development of new aircraft for DCS World, the creation of new theaters in which to fly in are an equally important aspect of the simulation. Today we are happy to provide a little look at the next map coming to DCS World: DCS: Strait of Hormuz Map! As we get closer to release, we will be providing more details on this new combat theater coming to DCS World. Teaser Video: Sincerely, The Eagle Dynamics Team
  7. Hate scammers emails much

    Send them here: https://www.rescam.org/
  8. If you had to buy a new automobile.

    How many miles do you need to drive Daily? Do you have a minimum performance threshold (acceleration) ? Does it need to carry the kids?
  9. Yankee Air Pirate moving on

    Korean War? is that via email?
  10. Early Access review: You may be aware that CAP2 V810.4 is now available in the Steam beta branch. You can read more about the update here. We will push the beta over to the default branch once we’ve ironed out any issues using the initial feedback. How to access the beta Right click on the game in your library and select properties. Then go to the beta tab and select the beta from the drop-down menu. Please note, the VR beta is still the old version. We will however be enabling this very shortly, we will drop you a line when we do. If you don’t yet own CAP2 you can get it here. We need your feedback Whether you are new to CAP2 or are just downloading the latest patch, we want your feedback. Here’s how to give it: Reviews: If you are enjoy/are enjoying CAP2 we would appreciate a quick Steam review as this massively increases visibility within the store and helps spread the CAP2 word. Bugs: Please report all bugs in the main bug thread as this speeds up development and helps us keep track of what’s been reported. For VR related bugs and feedback please use the VR Pilot's Lounge. Dev Sit-Rep: Keep an eye on this thread for what’s going on behind the scenes. MagsTV You may have seen the MagsTV video for CAP2 which is definitely worth a watch. It’s worth noting that we are taking the feedback at the end of the video into consideration along with player feedback and demand. As always, thanks for your support and patience, we appreciate it. Sim155 Ltd Early Access: Creating the game you want 'this is exactly the sort of sim I want to play and there's not been enough of them in recent years. I have feeling this will turn out cracking' 'I'm still having fun with it despite any early bugs which are being worked on and the Devs are closely working with the community feedback' 'in my opinion the Devs are the most active devs I've come across on steam addressing game issues and listening to those who are currently testing the game' 'from flying the Harrier what little I have SIM155 is going to knock it out of the park' 'I am really starting to like it after flying around a bit, can't wait to see how it will develop' 'showing a lot of promise. Buy it if you want to support development' UNSUBSCRIBE - If you want to unsubscribe from these emails please respond to this email, inserting 'UNSUBSCRIBE' in the subject box. Sim155 Ltd | 38 Westminster Oval | Stockton on Tees | TS20 1UX | United Kingdom Reg in England No: 5722013
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