[Logged] Inbound Vampire (Harm) Detection at 36K feet and 38nm

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BDukes
Posts: 1797
Joined: Wed Dec 27, 2017 12:59 pm

[Logged] Inbound Vampire (Harm) Detection at 36K feet and 38nm

Post by BDukes »

Looks like an inbound HARM was detected by 38nm at 36K feet by the mk1 Eyeball sensor of an Akash battery during the day. That's probably optimistic. Does aspect matter with contrail detection? This is head-on.

Load scenario. Take a look at Akash side log. You'll see the initial weapons detection at 38nm (assume contrail?).

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thewood1
Posts: 6842
Joined: Sun Nov 27, 2005 6:24 pm

RE: Inbound Vampire (Harm) Detection at 36K feet and 38nm

Post by thewood1 »

I would think that a contrail from a missile dead-on approaching at 36k would still be at least detectable by the naked eye on a clear day. There is still an angle from the ground-based observer that would be at least be able to detect the contrail behind the missile in order to get magnified vision devices on it. Not sure it could tell its a missile without high-powered and stabilized binos though.

My rough estimate would be at 36k and 38 nm, the observer would see the head of the contrail at about 15 deg above the horizon. At that range and angle, from the ground observer's perspective, the missile would appear to traveling up and leaving the contrail behind it. The main caveat here is since its a rocket on a missile, the contrail wouldn't be as pronounced as on a large aircraft. But it's at least plausible that you could pick up a contrail from that distance and altitude.
You are like puss filled boil on nice of ass of bikini model. You are nasty to everybody but then try to sweeten things up with a nice post somewhere else. That's nice but you're still a boil on a beautiful thing! - BDukes
AndrewJ
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Joined: Sun Jan 05, 2014 12:47 pm

RE: Inbound Vampire (Harm) Detection at 36K feet and 38nm

Post by AndrewJ »

How much of a contrail does HARM actually produce?

Jet and piston engined aircraft produce contrails at high altitude because their petrochemical combustion exhaust contains a large amount of water vapour, which condenses to form the trail. Many solid-fuelled rocket motors leave a prominent smoke trail because their propellant includes metals, particularly aluminum, which causes the opaque white smoke. This only lasts while the motor (or smouldering motor liner) is burning.

But production HARMs use a low-smoke motor (some early development ones didn't, I think), and looking at videos of HARM launches suggest it doesn't leave an appreciable smoke trail. There is the glowing dot of the motor itself, which is presumably least visible from the front.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b10Cj78YukE
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w6_hil2tgmQ
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WUWLajfDOPg
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gK2HGSGRrJA

It certainly made less smoke than the earlier Shrikes did. There's an interesting video on the development of both missiles here.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eqxfNAEkQo8

So will a high-altitude HARM generate a significant smoke trail, compared to other types of missiles or aircraft?
BDukes
Posts: 1797
Joined: Wed Dec 27, 2017 12:59 pm

RE: Inbound Vampire (Harm) Detection at 36K feet and 38nm

Post by BDukes »

ORIGINAL: AndrewJ

How much of a contrail does HARM actually produce?

Jet and piston engined aircraft produce contrails at high altitude because their petrochemical combustion exhaust contains a large amount of water vapour, which condenses to form the trail. Many solid-fuelled rocket motors leave a prominent smoke trail because their propellant includes metals, particularly aluminum, which causes the opaque white smoke. This only lasts while the motor (or smouldering motor liner) is burning.

But production HARMs use a low-smoke motor (some early development ones didn't, I think), and looking at videos of HARM launches suggest it doesn't leave an appreciable smoke trail. There is the glowing dot of the motor itself, which is presumably least visible from the front.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b10Cj78YukE
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w6_hil2tgmQ
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WUWLajfDOPg
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gK2HGSGRrJA

It certainly made less smoke than the earlier Shrikes did. There's an interesting video on the development of both missiles here.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eqxfNAEkQo8

So will a high-altitude HARM generate a significant smoke trail, compared to other types of missiles or aircraft?

Thanks Andrew.[:)] Might be worth some sort of calculation modifier flag for the weapons etc. for low contrail propulsion?

Regardless this is just an observation and not something I think is a huge issue. Thanks for digging into it!

Mike

Don't call it a comeback...
WSBot
Posts: 181
Joined: Sun Jan 17, 2021 9:31 pm

RE: Inbound Vampire (Harm) Detection at 36K feet and 38nm

Post by WSBot »

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