F-105 Wild Weasel vs SA-2 'Guideline' SAM: Vietnam 1965-73 by Peter E. Davies

By Peter E. Davies

Even supposing the USA entered the Vietnam battle with a number of the world's so much refined strive against plane, nearly all of their missions concerned traditional bombing and fighter engagements that hired particularly comparable strategies to these formerly utilized in the Korean warfare and global battle 2. the genuine step swap in aerial combating got here with using air-to-air and ground-to-air missiles. constructing equipment of defeating the latter concerned the swift evolution of know-how and strategies which, over 20 years later, might allow the us to win the air battle over Iraq in Operation wilderness hurricane in an issue of hours. throughout the Vietnam struggle, the looks of Russian SA-2 missiles round Hanoi in 1965 alarmed US officers. at the beginning reluctant to assault the missile websites, the expanding toll folks plane and the ways that the SA-2s inhibited bombing strategies intended that new tools of facing the websites needed to be constructed fast. digital reconnaissance airplane had a few good fortune with jamming of the missiles' tips platforms at lengthy variety, however the actual resolution lay with an plane that may discover the radars at nearer diversity, supply itself as a goal to the missile websites and assault them sooner than missiles should be introduced at US bombers. F-105Fs outfitted with new know-how quick grew to become a vital addition to all USAF strike missions over North Vietnam. utilizing new Shrike and traditional ARM anti-radiation missiles and radar detection gear built through the USA army, the F-105F and its extra subtle successor, the F-105G, endured their hair-raising battles with North Vietnamese missile batteries during the remainder of the Vietnam struggle. right here, writer Peter Davies recounts the dramatic contests among those newly built F-105s and the missile websites in Vietnam in a hugely illustrated account, drawing on first-hand pilot stories and technical manuals to give a whole historical past of the applied sciences and strategies of either side.

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Extra resources for F-105 Wild Weasel vs SA-2 'Guideline' SAM: Vietnam 1965-73 (Duel)

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5 per cent diethylamine), with AK-20 fuming nitric acid as the oxidizer. This specification was derived from the Wasserfall. A turbo-pump was required to supply the motor with OT-155 Isonite (isopropyl nitrate) liquid fuel sufficient for a 22-second engine burn. The later Item 20D Volkhov development of the S-75 used a different fuel comprising 56 per cent kerosene and 40 per cent Trikresol, with a TG-02 “starter fuel” supply to ignite the mixture. This was much safer to handle and store than the volatile mix used in the Dvina or Desna (“Guideline Mod 1”) models.

After each SA-2 engagement, Nguyen Xuan Dai and his team would quickly take cover under nearby trees just in case their battery had been targeted by an ARM. Once the all clear had been given, they would move with the battalion to another site. The SM-63 launchers themselves would only be moved under the cover of darkness, a tractor being used to pull the 12-wheeled vehicle. Travel time depended on the distance to the next site. For example, it took soldiers two days to move the missiles from Ninh Binh to Ha Tay.

However, the threat of SAM hits at altitudes above 1,500ft forced aircraft to enter the lethal range of most AAA, while the need to evade an oncoming SAM usually forced a pilot to jettison his ordnance load, effectively aborting his mission. Despite the Cuban experience, the USAF was comparatively ill-prepared in 1965 to tackle SAM and radar-directed AAA threats, and it did not expect to face them over North Vietnam. The basic technology was well understood, thanks in part to a copy of the SA-2 manual obtained through the spy Oleg Penkovsky in 1960 and via electronic intelligence of SA-2s in Cuba.

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