Iran Air-Force Analysis The Su-35 could revive Iran's Air Force

AmirIGM 

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Full article on IranGeoMil blog: https://irangeomil.blogspot.com/2023/03/the-su-35-could-revive-irans-air-force.html

The Su-35SE's projected purchase aims to revive an air force that is a shadow of its former glory; once the most powerful in the region, the IRIAF is now burdened by a fleet of tired, ageing aircraft. The service's prominence in Iran's military strategy has diminished as a result. Depending on how well the Su-35 is integrated and received by Iran, the 'Super Flanker' could reverse that trend and alter priorities for Iranian military planning going into the future.


 

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Hi all,

The above article is one I've been working on for a few months. Let me know what you think.

It is an excellent in-depth write up. Kudos.

A suitable AWACS platform really will be the pressing requirement for IRIAF to unlock full capability of the SU-35.
 

AmirIGM 

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It is an excellent in-depth write up. Kudos.

A suitable AWACS platform really will be the pressing requirement for IRIAF to unlock full capability of the SU-35.
Thank you 🙏

The IRIAF's big-wing capacity is actually half decent. Plenty of strategic and tactical transports, and enough tankers for the IRIAF's current role (more will be needed in future).

But as you pointed out this is not the case with AWACS which we don't have ANY of and is so important considering Iran's terrain.
 

Gary

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If revive here means giving back the vitality back to the air force, then yes, Su-35 would made up for the deficit of attention that plagued the IRIAF.

If revive here means bringing back the IRIAF into the dominant spot it enjoyed under the Shah or IRIAF in the early days of Iraq-Iran war, then not even the Su-35 would be much of a help.

Iran still (as already noted) lacks force multipliers like AWACS, tankers and other ISR assets.

There one thing also lacking and not yet noted, that is the quality of training of IRIAF personell manning the plane. Iran adversaries and neighbors like UAE, Saudi, Turkiye and Pakistan are regular attendee at many high end air combat exercise like Red Flag, Cobra warrior etc regularly practice with too air force like the USAF, IAF (Israel), RAF, Luftwaffe etc.. Something that Iran couldn't seek to replicate even if they have the money to do so. Hence even an addition of newer hardware will not change the calculus in the air.
 

AmirIGM 

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If revive here means giving back the vitality back to the air force, then yes, Su-35 would made up for the deficit of attention that plagued the IRIAF.

If revive here means bringing back the IRIAF into the dominant spot it enjoyed under the Shah or IRIAF in the early days of Iraq-Iran war, then not even the Su-35 would be much of a help.
The former. IRIAF is a long way from becoming a dominant force in the region. Just getting a decent level of attention internally is enough - currently it's like the almost doesn't even exist in Iran's defence strategy.
There one thing also lacking and not yet noted, that is the quality of training of IRIAF personell manning the plane. Iran adversaries and neighbors like UAE, Saudi, Turkiye and Pakistan are regular attendee at many high end air combat exercise like Red Flag, Cobra warrior etc regularly practice with too air force like the USAF, IAF (Israel), RAF, Luftwaffe etc.. Something that Iran couldn't seek to replicate even if they have the money to do so. Hence even an addition of newer hardware will not change the calculus in the air.
I did think of quality of training for the blog post but didn't include it because I didn't really know how it could be quantified. But you make a good point with the exercises.

It's possible that with the Su-35 the IRIAF will be more likely to participate in such exercises - they don't really stand a chance with the current fleet.
 

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It's possible that with the Su-35 the IRIAF will be more likely to participate in such exercises - they don't really stand a chance with the current fleet.

Iran isn't going to attend any Red Flag, Pitch Black or any Western led multinational exercise anytime soon, and this comes not because of old equipment but politics. That meant Iran's option to develop and hone its pilot skills via high end exercise are relegated to

  1. Russia, which has shown its mettle, or their lack of it in Ukraine
  2. China which is untested
In the last war, the IRIAF dominated the early part of the war due to the technological sophistication of its jets relative to Iraq's and the superior airmanship of its US educated pilots. Which is the opposite of what the IRIAF is today to its competitor.

I could understand why the Su-35 addition is a big deal for the IRIAF exhausted fighter fleet, but its overall effect to the calculus of air power in the middle east is minimal at best. Not only because the Su-35 is quite lagging in technology but the opportunity to develop its use by means of exercise are very limited.
 

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There is also the issue of the level of compromise that happened with lot of crucial Russian technology at a critical juncture (given what rests on it subsequently).

Russia would have made amends that it could during the 90s onwards to redevelop and reintegrate what it could, but the compromise is always in the backdrop giving the West a huge leg up.

This is large reason why India from 1990s onwards also moved to more cooperation with Israel (and then France to some extent) in certain critical areas to make them secure, indigenous and proprietary from inside out as soon as this became a real option.


Over a six-year period (1978-1985), Tolkachev met with his CIA handlers 21 times on the streets of Moscow. Documentation supplied by Tolkachev by late 1983 had included: complete sets of engineering and technical data-packages of Phazatron NIIR’s Phazotron NIIR's N-003 Sapfir-23 X-band pulse-Doppler radar for the MiG-23MF, the 385kg N-019 Rubin RPLK-29/Sapfir-29 X-band pulse-Doppler radar with twist-cassegrain antenna and its successor, the NO19MP Topaz—both meant for the MiG-29B-12 and MiG-29B-13; complete sets of engineering and technical data-packages of JSC V Tikhomirov Scientific Research Institute of Instrument Design’s N-001 Myech/RPLK-27 X-band pulse-Doppler radar with twist-cassegrain antenna for the Su-27SK; complete sets of engineering and technical data-packages of the Zaslon RP-31/N-007 X-bnd PESA radar on-board the MiG-31; complete sets of engineering and technical data-packages of the Shmel 3-D radar for the Beriev A-50 AEW & CS from NPO Vega; and complete sets of engineering and technical data-packages of both 2K12 Kub MR-SAM family and the Buk-М1 MR-SAM. The Soviet news agency TASS announced on October 22, 1986 that he had been executed.


 

AmirIGM 

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Iran isn't going to attend any Red Flag, Pitch Black or any Western led multinational exercise anytime soon, and this comes not because of old equipment but politics.
That much goes without saying.
That meant Iran's option to develop and hone its pilot skills via high end exercise are relegated to

  1. Russia, which has shown its mettle, or their lack of it in Ukraine
  2. China which is untested
Better than nothing - the IRIAF needs a barometer to see where it is, training wise. There have been some efforts to improve training, chiefly by developing simulators (so pilots can stay trained when not flying) and developing trainers such as Yasin and Kowsar - this is in the early stages but production has started. As I said quality of training is not something we can quantify yet.
In the last war, the IRIAF dominated the early part of the war due to the technological sophistication of its jets relative to Iraq's and the superior airmanship of its US educated pilots. Which is the opposite of what the IRIAF is today to its competitor.

I could understand why the Su-35 addition is a big deal for the IRIAF exhausted fighter fleet, but its overall effect to the calculus of air power in the middle east is minimal at best. Not only because the Su-35 is quite lagging in technology but the opportunity to develop its use by means of exercise are very limited.
True that Su-35s would not make much of a change to the calculus, but that is because they are few in number. I disagree that they are lagging behind in quality very much compared to regional air forces (excepting 5th gens of course).

As mentioned previously, the Su-35 deal is a big deal more because it's being purchased at all (and what could come after), rather than what the aircraft itself provides from an operational perspective. I'm hoping it will be a wake-up call, which could encourage further attention being given to the IRIAF.
 

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Better than nothing - the IRIAF needs a barometer to see where it is, training wise. There have been some efforts to improve training, chiefly by developing simulators (so pilots can stay trained when not flying) and developing trainers such as Yasin and Kowsar - this is in the early stages but production has started. As I said quality of training is not something we can quantify yet.
True this is something we can't quantify, there's no real numbers available. But its common wisdom that Western "flag exercise" are regarded as the closest thing fighter pilots to real life combat other than real life combat itself.

Graduates of Red Flag are very likely to excel in combat than its non-Red Flag adversary pilots. And it just happens that Iran's adversary from UAE, Saudi, Turkey and to lesser extent Pakistan are regular attendee on those exercise, while Iranian airmen is barred even from attending.
True that Su-35s would not make much of a change to the calculus, but that is because they are few in number. I disagree that they are lagging behind in quality very much compared to regional air forces (excepting 5th gens of course).

The technology behind the Su-35 is quite if not very lagging than its Western counterpart even 4th gen. We can talk a lot but to make it short lets for example talk about the radar. The IRBIS-E equipping the Su-35, for example has a SAR resolution of 3m. That's very very old school when everyone else is at least already achieving less than 1m resolution.

main-qimg-58db1e90605d412ac1328f792854994e-pjlq


The old APG-70 radar that was used to be installed on the F-15E in the 1980s achieved 2.5m (8.5ft) SAR resolution

main-qimg-a28327ec159afeefd5135df20a3dad04

img6081.jpg


Here's what 1m and 0.1m SAR resolution difference, there's a day and night difference just reducing it by 0.9m

main-qimg-6172c28098586f00988058c04b09c940-pjlq


Modern "cheap and retrofittable"APG-83 SABR radar has 1ft (0.3)m SAR resolution. That's like 8.5 time better than the APG-70 which is already better than the IRBIS E at 3m SAR resolution.
file.php


The RBE2 AA and other high end Western AESA radar installed on many Middle Eastern fighter jets has an even more advanced features than that, the RBE2 being <1m but not disclosed how much it is actually, but I'd be willing to bet its goes as as far as <0.09m or even more. After all it has Ultra High Resolution (UHR) SAR as standard on the AA AESA variant.

This shows just how low the bandwidth in Russian radars and bandwidth directly translated into better resolution, LPI and ECCM.

Another extreme example is the performance on track and engage. The smaller by TR count RBE2 (830 TR module) could track up to 40 aircraft and engage eight, that's more performance than the twice as large (1500+TR) IRBIS-E which could only detect 30 and engage 8. The F4 variant UAE ordered will have an enhanced version of the RBE2, and larger even more sophisticated radars are already/will be operational on Saudi F-15SA, UAE F-35, Bahraini F-16V, Kuwaiti F/A-18E/F.

The Su-35 is very underperforming jets for its size and hype really.


As mentioned previously, the Su-35 deal is a big deal more because it's being purchased at all (and what could come after), rather than what the aircraft itself provides from an operational perspective. I'm hoping it will be a wake-up call, which could encourage further attention being given to the IRIAF.
Yup, if the goal here is to revive the IRIAF than it does its job, but if the question is the SU-35 adequate for the IRIAF and the likely threat it faces then the likely answer is no, even if lets say Iran doubles its order. Iran would have to find something more capable than the Su-35 and options aren't really that much.
 

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The technology behind the Su-35 is quite if not very lagging than its Western counterpart even 4th gen. We can talk a lot but to make it short lets for example talk about the radar. The IRBIS-E equipping the Su-35, for example has a SAR resolution of 3m. That's very very old school when everyone else is at least already achieving less than 1m resolution.

main-qimg-58db1e90605d412ac1328f792854994e-pjlq


The old APG-70 radar that was used to be installed on the F-15E in the 1980s achieved 2.5m (8.5ft) SAR resolution

main-qimg-a28327ec159afeefd5135df20a3dad04

img6081.jpg


Here's what 1m and 0.1m SAR resolution difference, there's a day and night difference just reducing it by 0.9m

main-qimg-6172c28098586f00988058c04b09c940-pjlq


Modern "cheap and retrofittable"APG-83 SABR radar has 1ft (0.3)m SAR resolution. That's like 8.5 time better than the APG-70 which is already better than the IRBIS E at 3m SAR resolution.
file.php


The RBE2 AA and other high end Western AESA radar installed on many Middle Eastern fighter jets has an even more advanced features than that, the RBE2 being <1m but not disclosed how much it is actually, but I'd be willing to bet its goes as as far as <0.09m or even more. After all it has Ultra High Resolution (UHR) SAR as standard on the AA AESA variant.
I don't want to seem like I'm dismissing this out of hand, but SAR resolution really isn't important for Iran. The Su-35 has been bought as an air superiority fighter/interceptor, it's not going to be used for ground mapping.

Btw, SAR resolution isn't tied to bandwidth - the Irbis is an X-band radar just like any other modern fighter radar.

Another extreme example is the performance on track and engage. The smaller by TR count RBE2 (830 TR module) could track up to 40 aircraft and engage eight, that's more performance than the twice as large (1500+TR) IRBIS-E which could only detect 30 and engage 8. The F4 variant UAE ordered will have an enhanced version of the RBE2, and larger even more sophisticated radars are already/will be operational on Saudi F-15SA, UAE F-35, Bahraini F-16V, Kuwaiti F/A-18E/F.

The Su-35 is very underperforming jets for its size and hype really.
30 tracked and 8 engaged is very good for any radar, especially considering AESAs have advantages over PESAs (such as Irbis) in this regard. I'm not going to sit here and claim the F-16V's APG-83 radar is bad because it can track "only" ~20 targets.

Let me put it this way - the F-14's AWG-9 can track 24 targets and engage 6. Yet I don't think during the Iran-Iraq war Iranian pilots/RIOs were saying "damn I wish we could track another 6 targets and engage 2 more..." because they dominated against the hordes of Iraqi fighters.

By the way, I'd like to know where you heard the Irbis has "1500+ TR" modules... because as a PESA, it doesn't have any TR modules. TR modules are a characteristic of AESAs only.
Yup, if the goal here is to revive the IRIAF than it does its job, but if the question is the SU-35 adequate for the IRIAF and the likely threat it faces then the likely answer is no, even if lets say Iran doubles its order. Iran would have to find something more capable than the Su-35 and options aren't really that much.
Not argue this as I would repeat myself. I've talked a lot about the Su-35's capabilities here and especially in the above article.

By the way, I noticed your first image and some of your arguments are from this article, which itself is based on a quora post. These are riddled with errors and I would consider them hit pieces. For example the article says that the Su-35 can only detect a B-52 from 250km... whereas based on known specifications (3m^2 target detected at 200km in volume search, 400km in cued search) the Irbis would detect a B-52 at 480km in volume search and almost 1000km in cued search. If we are going to continue this discussion please refrain from using that article as I won't discuss its talking points. Too many errors and probably an agenda going on there.
 

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I don't want to seem like I'm dismissing this out of hand, but SAR resolution really isn't important for Iran. The Su-35 has been bought as an air superiority fighter/interceptor, it's not going to be used for ground mapping.
yes, but the type of antenna does translate into differing gains and bandwidth. And this has something to do with air superiority attempt

main-qimg-f717230bdbdd1f4749d0cdadcac12c01-lq


Su-35 uses older Patch antenna on its IRBIS radar, which has narrower bandwidth and lower directivity. And lower directivity equals to lower gain of the radar. Lower gain means lower ECCM capability and worse LPI characteristics. Modern Western AESA radar like the RBE2, APG-63v(3), APG-82, APG-72 etc all uses the more advanced TSA model antenna.

And this will be a deficiency in air superiority attempt by the IRIAF using Su-35 against the more advanced electronics on board adversary air force like the the Arab nations.

Attempting air superiority while having worse ECCM and LPI characteristics, especially when you are forced to fight without AWACS. You will have to rely on your onboard radar to do volume search and forced to work with lower EMCON. It can be done but
30 tracked and 8 engaged is very good for any radar, especially considering AESAs have advantages over PESAs (such as Irbis) in this regard. I'm not going to sit here and claim the F-16V's APG-83 radar is bad because it can track "only" ~20 targets.

Let me put it this way - the F-14's AWG-9 can track 24 targets and engage 6. Yet I don't think during the Iran-Iraq war Iranian pilots/RIOs were saying "damn I wish we could track another 6 targets and engage 2 more..." because they dominated against the hordes of Iraqi fighters.
Yes, but the comparison is just trying to give an idea of how far behind the IRBIS is, especially that RBE2 is actually operational for quite some time now and there's more advanced radars that is going to be fielded in the middle east.
By the way, I'd like to know where you heard the Irbis has "1500+ TR" modules... because as a PESA, it doesn't have any TR modules. TR modules are a characteristic of AESAs only.

My bad, that's actually the count for the Byelka. yes PESA uses only a single transmitter / receiver module. that's my error

By the way, I noticed your first image and some of your arguments are from this article, which itself is based on a quora post. These are riddled with errors and I would consider them hit pieces. For example the article says that the Su-35 can only detect a B-52 from 250km... whereas based on known specifications (3m^2 target detected at 200km in volume search, 400km in cued search) the Irbis would detect a B-52 at 480km in volume search and almost 1000km in cued search. If we are going to continue this discussion please refrain from using that article as I won't discuss its talking points. Too many errors and probably an agenda going on there.
Yes, some from quora (Abhirup Sengupta) and some are from F-16.net

Abhirup Sengupta is actually quite reasonable to cite, he is a regular poster at NavalPost and his works cited at aviationgeekclub.

Also there's no need to start accusing agenda, if I'm wrong I'm gentle enough to admit. When it comes to planes I don't really do politics.
 

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Su-35 uses older Patch antenna on its IRBIS radar, which has narrower bandwidth and lower directivity. And lower directivity equals to lower gain of the radar. Lower gain means lower ECCM capability and worse LPI characteristics. Modern Western AESA radar like the RBE2, APG-63v(3), APG-82, APG-72 etc all uses the more advanced TSA model antenna.

And this will be a deficiency in air superiority attempt by the IRIAF using Su-35 against the more advanced electronics on board adversary air force like the the Arab nations.

Attempting air superiority while having worse ECCM and LPI characteristics, especially when you are forced to fight without AWACS. You will have to rely on your onboard radar to do volume search and forced to work with lower EMCON.
Thanks for the pointer about the different antenna element types, I was not aware of this. I assume you have determined the Irbis uses the patch type just visually as there's no source. Personally I can't see an image of Irbis detailed enough to determine that. Anyway, a few points:.

1. The difference in ECCM/LPI capabilities between Irbis-E and something like an APG-82 isn't because they use patch vs TSA/notch type. It's because it's a PESA vs AESA comparison which is not apples to apples. AESAs have inherently better ECCM/LPI capabilities than PESAs for a variety of reasons. This still doesn't make PESAs handicapped or useless by any stretch. (side note: I have a feeling that the AESA vs PESA debate is exaggerated a bit because western fighters (esp. USA) mainly went from MSAs straight to AESAs, which is a massive jump, and equate PESAs with MSAs because they're not the latest and greatest. Even though PESAs have all the advantages over MSAs that AESAs have, just to a lesser extent. But... I digress)

2. The differences in antenna element type seem to mainly affect radar range, which in the case of the Irbis would be overcome by sheer brute force of the transmitter - 5kw avg power and 20kw peak power (assuming it uses a patch type, which I'd like to see some proof of).

3. Still, I agree and have pointed out in my original article that the Irbis being a PESA means it has lesser ECCM/LPI capabilities compared to AESAs. With regards to lacking AWACS - I hope Iran will purchase those at some point, but in the mean time Su-35 would have the home advantage of operating within/close to Iran's own IADS which would help level the playing field in terms of situational awareness.
Also there's no need to start accusing agenda, if I'm wrong I'm gentle enough to admit. When it comes to planes I don't really do politics.
Not accusing you at all, just that particular source/article.
 

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Thanks for the pointer about the different antenna element types, I was not aware of this. I assume you have determined the Irbis uses the patch type just visually as there's no source. Personally I can't see an image of Irbis detailed enough to determine that.

This is already well noted.

Irbis-E
Electronically_Scanned_Array_IRBIS_E.jpg


Here's a close up of RBE2 AA . Look at those crab like antenna that's clear TSA...
rbe-2-aesa-2-jpg.16398


Here's a TSA/ Vivaldi antenna close up
image



Anyway, a few points:.

1. The difference in ECCM/LPI capabilities between Irbis-E and something like an APG-82 isn't because they use patch vs TSA/notch type.
It is....to do LPI, radars uses agile frequency hopping + Ultra wide bandwidth and some more...

LPI measures include:

  • Power management and high duty cycle, meaning the transmitter is on most of the time (long integration times)
  • Wide bandwidth (or Ultra-wideband)
  • Frequency Agility, and frequency selection
  • Advanced/irregular scan patterns
  • Coded pulses (coherent detection)
  • High processing gain
  • Low sidelobe antennas

The bolded part have anything to do with the antenna type manufacturers chose.

Advantages of Vivaldi / TSA antennas are their broadband characteristics (suitable for ultra-wideband signals
https://www.wikiwand.com/en/Vivaldi_antenna


It's because it's a PESA vs AESA comparison which is not apples to apples. AESAs have inherently better ECCM/LPI capabilities than PESAs for a variety of reasons. This still doesn't make PESAs handicapped or useless by any stretch. (side note: I have a feeling that the AESA vs PESA debate is exaggerated a bit because western fighters (esp. USA) mainly went from MSAs straight to AESAs,
In fighter jet yes, because its just so damn good, they jumped straight ahead to AESA. But the U.S does have experience with PESA onboard combat jets.

apq164-radar-b1b-lancer-1.jpg


There's a lot of explanation why air force jumped straight away to AESA, but mainly due to longer range, higher accuracy, lower intercept probability, better ECCM, lower noise etc.

which is a massive jump, and equate PESAs with MSAs because they're not the latest and greatest. Even though PESAs have all the advantages over MSAs that AESAs have, just to a lesser extent. But... I digress)

Not quite, the difference between AESA to PESA is more extreme when it comes to MSA and PESA. As I've noted earlier, the PESA IRBIS-E (3m) is no more advanced in SAR resolution than MSA APG-70(2.5m) from the 80s. And again SAR resolution is directly proportional to a radar’s bandwidth, which greatly determines the radar’s jamming resistance (ECCMs).

It does have a little faster scanning rate yes true, but everywhere else is is deficient.


2. The differences in antenna element type seem to mainly affect radar range, which in the case of the Irbis would be overcome by sheer brute force of the transmitter - 5kw avg power and 20kw peak power

It is quite powerful yes. NIIP (the manufacturer of IRBIS) claimed 350 km detection range against 3 m^2 target,.

main-qimg-1cfb148bdd88dc9212ff3663d0e67b4a-pjlq


But it is on a very narrow deg x deg cued search

V. Tikhomirov Research Institute of Instrumentation provides for the assured detection and acquisition of typical aerial targets at a range of up to 200 km (up to 170 km against ground background), and in a narrower field of view¬ – up to 350-400 km.


its hard to imagine an increase in situational awareness with narrow field of view cued search. Especially when you have no AWACS. If the Su-35 would do volume search the range dropped dramatically. Oh one more thing, turn on your radar, you emit radar signal, your EMCON will be severely compromised especially with the antenna characteristics used by the IRBIS-E. Modern ESM are already so good and so accurate, passive detection could be a primary means to detect opposition, especially because they "sniff" at longer range than active sensors.

And that is just the radar deficiency on the Su-35 relative to near competitor in the middle east. We have yet to talk about its OLS-35, its Khibiniy ECM, its weapons carriage compared to similar analogues already fielded by the neighboring countries.

Its hard to imagine the Su-35 coming out on top if their assigned mission is air superiority attempt like you mentioned...


but in the mean time Su-35 would have the home advantage of operating within/close to Iran's own IADS which would help level the playing field in terms of situational awareness.

Again as impressive as ground based IADS is, it is in no way able to give airmen the same "god eye view" that AWACS give to pilots. Especially in contested airspace. You yourself mentioned how mountainous terrain handicapped radar view. In short it helps yes, but its not going to be level, and depending on the size and sophistication of enemies, it will just be time that determines how long the IADS and its radars will survive.

There's already a lot of real life example where ground based IADS and sensors getting wiped out by superior air force with AWACS.
 
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Thanks @AmirIGM for your informative article.. Purchase of this fighters will increase Iran's air power but i wonder what can a nearly dead and inactive air force handle with just the Su-35? Don't you need many different platforms and their coordination for this? We're talking about a completely crippled goose here.

According to experts!!🤔 from the Middle East, the Iranian Su-35s will be able to pursue the Israeli F-35s, as well as interfere with their refueling in the air, which at some point will be too risky for Tel Aviv and the air force.

I really wonder this experts
 

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Thanks @AmirIGM for your informative article.. Purchase of this fighters will increase Iran's air power but i wonder what can a nearly dead and inactive air force handle with just the Su-35? Don't you need many different platforms and their coordination for this? We're talking about a completely crippled goose here.

According to experts!!🤔 from the Middle East, the Iranian Su-35s will be able to pursue the Israeli F-35s, as well as interfere with their refueling in the air, which at some point will be too risky for Tel Aviv and the air force.

I really wonder this experts
I doubt those su series can do anything to IAF
 

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Su35 is a formidable plane but against a F35 no chance unless both engage in a dog fight.

But the F35 can even shoot it down before that happens.
 

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Su35 is a formidable plane but against a F35 no chance unless both engage in a dog fight.

But the F35 can even shoot it down before that happens.
Su-35 isn't a formidable plane even japanese F4s can counter them.
 

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Australia
Nation of origin
Turkey
Su-35 isn't a formidable plane even japanese F4s can counter them.

I still believe they are formidable even if they lack the tech to fight against the F35.

Its down to the pilot.

F4s have no chance they are relics. F16s and F15s will no doubt destroy a Su35 but a F4 no way.
 

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