Missile Evasion techniques
Have you been launched upon?? Did you just shit your flight suit?? Don’t want to embarrass yourself?? Worry not!! There are a couple of countermeasures, manoeuvres and techniques meant for different situations and different kind of missiles (Radar Guided & Infrared) which might save you from the situations mentioned above. Let’s take them up one by one shall we?
1. The First one we are going to discuss is COUNTERMEASURES
The name is self explanatory “COUNTER MEASURES”.These consist of couple of onboard devices which can help to COUNTER the missiles.
The first one that we are going to discuss is CHAFF!! Chaffs are basically radar countermeasures which are made up of multiple pieces of aluminium (and some other stuff!!) which when deployed, tries to decoy the Radar or the seeker (Active & Semi Active Radar Guided missiles) of the oncoming radar guided missile into believing that it is heading straight for the A/C and thus saving your ass!! The best way to deploy chaff is to deploy them and then pull a high G turn.
The second one is Flares. Flares are used against IR guided missiles like R-73, AIM-9, R-27ET etc. These flares burn at a very high temperature (Thousand of degrees!!) and emulate the heat coming from your engines which the missile is tracking. The flares followed by again a high G manoeuvre are the best measure to defeat an IR missile.The Third one is Electronic Counter Measures. These are onboard jammers which Jams some particular frequencies of the radar thereby denying them your critical knowledge that the enemy needs to fox off a missile. When the jammers are on, the enemy doesn’t know your range, altitude your vector which is critical for the launch. But there are a couple of drawbacks of the using the Jammers as well!! When the jammers are on, you broadcast your location to everybody present in the AO thereby making you susceptible to numerous enemies converging onto you. Additionally, always remember to turn them off once you are in the burn through range otherwise the missile may track you in the Head on Jam (HoJ) mode. ECM isn’t the one you’re looking for if you plan to have a stealthy ingress.
2. The second Topic we are going to discuss is MANOEUVRE.
Depending upon your enemy’s location (Range & Aspect) there are a couple of manoeuvres, which you can carry out to evade the missile. If your enemy is far, and is foxing at the max range just a 30 degree left or right bank will get you out of harm’s way. Remember missiles have motor and a limited amount of fuel. Once the motor runs out of fuel it just has momentum to guide it. Pull up slightly & the G forces will do their job.
Second scenario If he is far but still within the max range of the missiles envelope, the best manoeuvre would be to snake forward left and right constantly (while pulling slightly high Gs) while increasing or decreasing your altitude. With this manoeuvre you will still be able to maintain the lock and render his missile useless by making it run out of energy.
If he is close the best one would be Chaff & Flares followed by a split S or a 180 degree turn away from the direction of the missile. The missile will have to travel more relatively to hit you therefore, rendering it useless after a certain period of time as the fuel will run out. You can use the countermeasures to your taste. Also you could also dive towards the ground to make the missile loose you in the ground clutter.
One more manoeuvre would be the out of plane turns!! Just bank the A/C at an angle of 45 degrees and complete a loop while pulling high Gs. This makes the missile track you in 3 Axis (x, y, z). This is a pretty good manoeuvre but after a loop or two you will lose most of your energy and might render you at a disadvantage if you get to a merge. You need energy at all times to manoeuvre you A/C.
3. The Third Topic we are going to discuss is Techniques.
The best technique would be to notch the bandit if he has foxed a semi active at you or notch the missile if it’s an Active Missile. What is notching you ask? Notching is basically a manoeuvre wherein you, when locked turn to such a bearing and angle that the enemy is at approximately 90 degrees to you i.e. to you 3 o’ clock or to your 9 o’ clock and lower than the altitude of your enemy. This will in most of the cases break the lock. The Semi-active missiles needs to be guided throughout for a hit therefore, if the missile losses the lock it will lose its guidance and will be defeated. For an Active missile (AIM 120B/C & R-77) you need to notch the missile in order to break the lock.
Also remember to crank after foxing. This will increase your distance from the incoming missile thereby making it travel more to hit you and therefore, more likely to lose its energy to hit you. It’s all about the energy while flying.
In a merge if you have sufficient energy, try to turn with your engines at idle. This will create issues for your enemy to lock onto your heat signatures. Flare to your taste and the missile will mostly be defeated!!
Try these tricks, don’t be that man who came back with yellow pants !! If you have any queries feel free to contact me in the forums. I’ll see you guys up in the skies. Good hunting Gentlemen!!