The United States Air Force is aiming at developing fighter jets that mimic the Russian Su-57 and Chinese J-20 and FC-31, so that it can exercise against fighting them.
“The objective of this request is to establish the availability of sources capable of developing, integrating, constructing, testing and producing an affordable set of technical solutions and equipment for air targets (radio transmitting devices, electronic warfare equipment and consumables, such as dipole and thermal reflectors), capable of sufficient to reliably simulate advanced enemy aircraft (Su-57, J-20 and FC-31) to test specific test scenarios,” the US Air Force’s request said.
Initially this was reported in March 2019, but in May the US Air Force actually painted F-16 fighter jets to resemble the Su-57 Russian fighters.
The F-16s are part of an Aggressor squad, that mimics the enemy during military exercises.
The 64th Aggressor Squadron’s mission is to emulate Russian aircraft and flying tactics, teaching U.S. Air Force pilots how to properly react and counter their moves. Giving an “aggressor” aircraft meant to emulate Russian fighters adds a level of realism to training.
But this is only a temporary solution, since the Pentagon’s request actually is looking for contractors who have the necessary technology to produce equipment that would more closely mimic that of the Russian 5th generation fighter jet – Su-57.
According to the document, which RT had access to, such a need to develop new solutions was caused by various threats around the world, as well as the limited military budget of the United States.
So, targets should be remotely controlled, as well as capable of landing on their own if they were not destroyed. Their service life should be at least ten flights with 30 hours of flight time before they are destroyed. Also, potential contractors are faced with the task of presenting targets that can recover after contact with salt water.
“Destroyed targets must be able to produce appropriate (J-20, Su-57, and so on) radio and electronic signals, supporting proper EPR, IR signature, or both for a given test scenario,” the request stated.
RT furthermore got access to another document, which requests the procurement of five simulations of AK-47 that would copy how the assault rifle behaves.
“Five sets of simulations of AK-47 shooting assault rifles with small oxygen and propane cylinders to simulate live fire,” the document said.
As indicated, such models are necessary for the department as part of the supply of training equipment.
Controls and a holder for carrying gas cylinders in a backpack will also have to be attached to the mock-ups of machines.
The list of necessary purchases within the framework of the same tender also includes two installations for simulating an explosion with six smoke containers and boxes with smoke bombs.
Previously, the Pentagon placed an application for the purchase of supplies for Russian weapons and ammunition.
This was first reported back in May 2019, by Defence Blog.
“The U.S. Army Contracting Command, on behalf of the Office of the Project Manager, Maneuver Ammunition Systems (OPM-MAS), is issuing a market survey to identify technically and financially capable sources for supplying and delivering multiple variants of Special Ammunition & Weapon Systems (SAWS) and Non-NATO commercial ammunition from around the world for delivery to OCONUS locations.”
These included small-caliber ammunition for use with Makarov and Tokarev pistols, AK-47 assault rifles, PKM and YaKB / DshKM machine guns, SVD Dragunov sniper rifles.
And these would be delivered through Fiscal Years 2021-2026, so it is a long-term project.
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