Getting accurate and reliable data of the exact ranges of Radars (meaning the distance it can detect an airborne object with a given Radar Cross Section or RCS size) can be quite a pain in the a#@, mainly because such data is usually not published by the manufacturers. I did try using the guide, Smarter (and Simpler) Radar in Harpoon as reference most of the time, mainly because it is quite comprehensive, listing almost all the known radars of its time, and I would like to think it is relatively accurate as its maker sought to make the game as realistic as possible.
However, it does have its limitations also. First, it was made back in 2003, and since then quite a number of new radars have come up that is not included in the list. Second, people will always doubt the fact that it was made for just a simulation game, and no matter how realistic that game is, there will always be that sort of stigma.
But some manufacturers do publish the exact ranges of their radars, so now I am trying to come up with a better, more accurate and newer database based from respectable internet sources. When I say “respectable” sources, I mean documents or websites that are from a:
– Government Institution;
– An expert in the field with verifiable credentials;
– A business-registered Press organization.
Below now are such sources I have found so far, with a short description on what radar/s they provided information for:
* F/A-18E/F Super Hornet vs. Sukhoi Flanker,
– Data for various radars like the APG-77 for the F/A-22A Raptor, APG-79 for the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, APG-81 for the F-35 Lightning II, APG-63V2 for the F-15C Eagle, N011M for the SU-30 Flanker-C, APG-80 for the F-16E/F Fighting Falcon, Zaslon for the MIG-31 Foxhound, N001 for the SU-27SK Flanker, APG-68 for the F-16C Fighting Falcon and Zhuk for the MIG-29 Fulcrum. The site is Australia Air Power which is run by aviation expert Karlo Kopp.
– The data given is in graph-form, but I was able to extract the exact values using a software called Web Plot Digitizer which is fantastic and highly recommended, by the way.
* Radar control system “IRBIS-E” for Su-35 fighter,
– Well, as the title says, data for the Irbis-E radar for the SU-35 Flanker-E from the website of NIIP, a Russian Research and Development Institution.
* Serious Squall,
– Data for the RBE2 radar of the Rafale from Avionics Magazine, an online aviation magazine.
* KLJ-7/10 Fire Control Radar (FCR) (China), Airborne radar systems,
– Data for the KLJ-7 radar of the JF-17 Thunder from Jane’s Avionics, an online military reference site.