View Full Version : Energy Vs Turn fighters: A fatalistic question

11-10-2004, 11:15 AM
Without wanting to be a fatalist or absolutist in a environment as dynamic as air combat, I wanted to raise the following question.

Given all other parameters are equal, does an energy fighter ALWAYS have an advantage over the turn fighter? Since he engages and disengages at will, can always escape and always catch up, HE is the one dictating the terms of the fight, and HE is the one that has to screw up in order for the fight to start being more "fair".

Of course things are rarely perfect, and such advantages diminish very rapidly in air combat, but the question is:


11-10-2004, 11:29 AM
Yes. IMO of course.

11-10-2004, 11:30 AM
Excuse me, could you explain what does it mean "energy fighter" and "other parameters"? You express your ideas in non-scientific way. I guess that energy fighter is one that can save and transfer two kind of energies: kinetic and potential without any great loss of the total energy. Then the answer is NO. The fighter that dictates terms of fight is the one with superb parameters like speed and clim brate - it can outclimb or separate from the battle when it's pilot decide about it.

11-10-2004, 11:37 AM
Considering how fighterdesign kept evolving to faster airplanes I would say that BnZ is superior when done properly.

Likewise, flying in pairs or groups is superior to flying alone.

But that doesn't mean that TnB fighters are sheep to be slaughtered.
They do have tricks to spoil a BnZ attack and they can try to lure the BnZer into a TnB fight.

11-10-2004, 11:38 AM
The advantage has to be the pilot in the E fighter, He has the mind set that when he arrives on the scene he must have E that is why he has an inherent advantage.

Im implying that the E fighter has a situational advantage due to the pilots awareness. Without going in to plane types its too general to say one kind always has the advantage over another.

11-10-2004, 11:42 AM
Yes. it seems that historically a speed advantage of only 10-15 mph in a WW2 fighter would enable it to maintain superiority on a force vs force level. Squadron size encounters, though, are decided by the tactical situation, and one on ones come into the realm of 'its the man, not the machine', although the man with the faster machine has still an edge, all other things being equal.

11-10-2004, 11:58 AM
I think yes.
Just take a p51 and go fight low, slow, with flaps down, in a turn fight. You'll die quick.
Now take the same p51 and climb away from the fight, cool your engine before fight, stalk your pray and when you have the best position jump him. If you miss no problem, you can go back up, and set for a new attack. Flying this way you can make few mistakes and still get home alive.
Then, energy fighting is much more complex then just Z&B with altitude advantage.
I think Z&B without energy in mind will get you killed faster then turn fighting.

11-10-2004, 12:02 PM
@ Roland
You can't say anything about the pilot based on the plane he is flying.

Of course, if you fly a BnZ plane then you should worry about different things then if you fly a TnB plane.

But regardless of which plane you fly, you must always have good SA.
SA does not come by flying a fast plane and you won't lose it by flying a slow plane.

Also, it is not 'man, not machine' or 'machine, not man' but 'man and machine' what you need.
If machines didn't matter we would still be hitting eachother with our fists.

11-10-2004, 12:19 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> Given all other parameters are equal, does an energy fighter ALWAYS have an advantage over the turn fighter? <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
considering the human factor is also equal, then... yes, aldough an energy fighter caught low on E vs a turn fighter with equal E, is in serious deal.
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> DOES THE ENERGY FIGHTER TAKE OFF FROM HIS BASE WITH AN ADVANTAGE? <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
moral advantage? yes
tehnical advantage? not really.

11-10-2004, 01:09 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Von_Zero:
moranl advantage? yes
thenhical advantage, not really. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>Is that 'moral' and 'technical'? http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_confused.gif

11-10-2004, 01:59 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by jeroen-79:
Considering how fighterdesign kept evolving to faster airplanes I would say that BnZ is superior when done properly.

Likewise, flying in pairs or groups is superior to flying alone.

But that doesn't mean that TnB fighters are sheep to be slaughtered.
They do have tricks to spoil a BnZ attack and they can try to lure the BnZer into a TnB fight. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Just would like to point out that BnZ does not neccessarily equal E fighting. BnZ can be.

11-10-2004, 02:33 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Is that 'moral' and 'technical'? <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
yup ur right please excuse me bad typing... i was drunk atm http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_eek.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/53.gif

11-10-2004, 03:22 PM
within limits .. modern jets tend to go subsonic to dogfight and then there is the harrier

11-10-2004, 03:49 PM
I would say so, as even in what might appear to be a turn and burn match some E-fighting discipline often permits the one with that discipline to dictate the fight, and under certain circumstances the ability to control the bandit, and this is in fact more control over the engagement than that which a more classic B&Z fighter may find within their hands given your closer proximity to the bandit (which is a great way to lure them into giving you a clean shot). IMHO There is never an advantage to giving up your overall energy if you can still manage to maneuver when the need presents itself.

El Turo
11-10-2004, 04:09 PM
To grossly over-generalize.. the fighter with an initial energy advantage will have a tremendous upper hand over his opponent in nearly any comparative matchup. However, the "energy" fighter will generally enjoy a relative advantage over a "turn" fighter at high speeds while the "turn" fighter will enjoy the advantage at low speeds, all else being equal.

However, that does not take into account roll rate, climb rate, dive rate, acceleration, firepower, or the most critical variable of all.. the quality of the loose nut between the rudder and control stick.




El Turo
11-10-2004, 04:10 PM
Just because I think it is relative.. an explanation of BnZ defense and possible counters against:


On avoiding the BnZ attacker:

First, we have to establish what, if any, advantages you have versus your opponent (climb, turn, roll, dive, firepower?) and move forward from there. Generally, when up against a 109 or 190 with an altitude/Energy advantage, we're going to be in a plane that has a superior turn rate, perhaps a slightly lesser climb rate and moderately similar roll rate.

The single most oft-repeated mistake in this scenario is for the disadvantaged pilot to always try and point his guns at the zooming-away bad guy. This plays directly into his advantage by placing you further and further undeneath him and under his thumb

The name of the game is to build up our energy until we can level the playing field enough to risk some offensive manuevering. Specifically, what you want to do is work on achieving lateral separation. Let's say he comes down, makes his gun pass (unsuccessfully) and begins climbing out at a heading of 270. You should immediately turn to a heading either left or right of his of at least 90 degrees and establish a positive rate of climb so that he is just slightly behind your wingline and climbing away from you.. taking a compass heading of east of 180* or 360*.

If, at this point, he has gotten slightly impatient and begins his "dive" on you from this position, it will flatten out his approach to you and force him to establish a much longer time-to-target (you) and thusly he will use up a bit more of energy in the process. This has two benefits. One, he will not be able to zoom climb as high. Two, he will not be travelling quite as fast and you may be able to get a snap shot opportunity as he passes you.

So, how to evade his pass without sacrificing a ton of energy in the process? Barrel Roll or double-break evasive. This puts him out in front of you and climbing away.

Repeat your lateral separation technique (hopefully towards your home airfield if you have the choice, right?)

You may be able to scratch out enough of an energy advantage to get some shots off on him as he zooms by or climbs out if you begin to close the energy gap enough. OR, if he gets frustrated to a large enough extent that he begins to try and turn with you, then you excercise your advantage and achieve an end game that way.

Remember, it is important to put him off your port or starboard wing and to ALSO BE CLIMBING out as you do so. I would suggest a "combat climb" at Vy, which will place you at a higher speed climb. This establishes separation between your two aircraft while simultaneously grabbing Energy.

Keep it up until you are able to establish a sustainable offensive position, have called in the reinforcements (you have wingmen in the area, right?) or have managed to get home by extending repeatedly in the direction of your home airfield/frontlines.

Regarding the "Double Break Evasive":

Double break evasive.. You will have to be very good at judging convergence/firing distances to make this work.

Your bandit is diving down on your in your rear quarter with a substantial speed/energy advantage.. you begin a shallow turn in one direction, keeping him at approximately 4 or 5 o'clock (or 7/8 as your preference dictates). Right as they are approaching firing range, you roll and break to the opposite direction, slightly out of plane (meaning, if you were "flat" turning to the right, you do NOT "flat" turn to the left.. include a little nose up or nose down attitude to throw off your attacker's aim).

Now, this is where the timing part comes into play. At this point, your BnZ bandit is highly unlikely to have followed your break turn because he is too fast to effectively match your rate of turn and to do so would burn a LOT of his energy. You will QUICKLY reverse back into the bandit's position hopefully at just the right time to get a snap shot on him as he passes you, before he extends out of firing range. If you have centerline ammunition or a longer convergence setting, this will be easier to pull off.

If you can time this right, it is a devistatingly effective counter to the BnZ'er as two things are likely to happen. First, and most importantly, you are going to win the mental battle by making him think he doesn't have quite as much of an advantage as he really does and that he is not as safe as he thought he was. Second, you will likely get a few plinks on him which may degrade his plane's performance or force him into a panic-evasive manuever which will blow his energy and put you in the driver's seat.

That is the "double break evasive" in a nutshell. It takes a bit of practice, but is a great suprise move to pull out on someone that is nice and complacent and feeling a little too safe for their own good.




11-10-2004, 04:46 PM
The best situation to be in with a fighter, in my view, is a fighter that mixes the two possibilities. There's a number of examples but the Spitfire is the one thats closest in my mind. The Spitfire is a fantastic (at least in-game) energy fighter, not as good as the P-47 or the FW190, but quite good...and capable of out turning both of the aformentioned.

Even with the Spitfires superior turn rate...I almost never use that against opponents. I use it for positioning more than actual combat. The FW190 takes more work at this because of its turn. With both fighters, I still dive in on opponents or hit them very fast as often as possible.

I try to never get into a turning battle if I can help it...when you do, then a third party just gets above you and gets you.

11-10-2004, 05:12 PM
A long time ago in a sim far, far, away I wrote this quick tutorial on energy management in dogfights. The examples used relate to Red Baron 3D but up the speeds to WW2 and the principles still apply...


11-10-2004, 07:46 PM
Nothings ever a given when you pit two humans against one another, no matter what the books or charts say.

The booming ends fast once he hugs the grass. Best leave him if he's that smart.

11-10-2004, 09:36 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Yellonet:
Yes. IMO of course. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Correct. http://acompletewasteofspace.com/forum/images/smiles/clap.gif

11-10-2004, 11:14 PM
ive flamed Me262,s with the J8A

so the answer is no

11-11-2004, 02:03 AM
Thanks guys-some great response.

First off, remember the question ISN'T if a turn fighter can beat an energy fighter. The question, or premise of my thesis is that:

A. Superior energy allows one to dictate the terms of the fight
B. There are aircraft with superior energy potential (speed, acceleration, climb rate etc.)


The aircraft with the superior energy potential will be able to exploit the advantage given to it by A. IN other words all he has to do, is stay faster and higher than any potential bogey he might encounter. If he does that, he enters the fight with an advantage, and the whole point in this argument, is that the turn fighter, even he tries to enter the engagement as high and as fast as he can, he CANNOT MATCH the energy fighter.

Hence, the energy fighter dictates the terms of the fight.

With regard to countering such a situation, I'm interested in hearing more since I'm just beginning to fly Allied planes, after many years of flying for the LW.

I'd be a little aprehensive though to give the energy fighter maneuvering space and actually allow more separation. I'd try to get as close as possible, as under him as possible, so as to make him make steeper dives, gain too much speed, make too wide turns, and in short, never be able to pull enough lead to hit me unless he ops to blow his energy potential. If he does that, and I survive the first shot, he should be toast.

In general, from my experience as the Luftwaffe guy in the sky, the worst thing a TnB could do to me was try and stay under my nose, limiting my options and geometry. By the latter I mean that I couldn't set up my run the way I wanted to, and would always approach him in an unfavourable position to fire.

(Vertical dive, very high speed, small pitch and roll rate potential, and with gravity pulling my bullets down even faster)

11-11-2004, 02:55 AM
The e fighter will have an initial advantage but it can be negated and possibly reversed by proper counter measures. Similar to playing white in chess the first move initiates a tempo advantage but black can equalize or win with good play.
Here is an interesting perspective


Also Robert Shaws book on fighter tactics covers your point in detail

11-11-2004, 03:48 AM
Hi Jeroen

Sorry for the vagueness of my prior post. My point was that regardless of what plane is flown the pilot can still chose to have an Energy fight. I think that if a pilot is intelligent and maintains his energy advantage he has the advantage.

Ie if two pilots both fly Zeros lets say and one goes in there with an altitude advantage, misses on 1st pass but rather than enter a turning fight he extends then returns again then I think he has the advantage over the other pilot.

Obviously a good E fighter helps promote this style but it is applicable to almost any fighter in the game. So in a sense the 'Man' in the machine can decide before the engagement he will attack from height to give himself an advantage, and temporarily increase the speed of his plane by diving. The performance margin can be so narrow that it is definitly down to piloting rather than mph difference.

11-11-2004, 07:28 AM
The partial problem with this discussion is that there is a misuse of the term "energy fighter". All fighters are "energy" fighters. All fighters have energy. It is the pilot who best controls the use of his energy that has the advantage.

Energy does not equal speed. It doesn't just equal speed and altitude. It equals speed, altitude AND turning ability. You make trade offs between the three in a dogfight.

The argument is one that breaks down between whether having a better turn component is better or worse than having a speed component. Neither is a guaranteed advantage as each can be nullfied by the other. It's why the axiom "it's the pilot not the plane" exists.

In general, the trend has been building aircraft that are faster rather than more maneuverable. True to a point, but not always. Take the move from the century series jet aircraft (102,104, 106) to todays 15, 16, and 18 fighters--a return to maneuverability of some sort rather than just pure speed. Really, the driving factor to why aircraft have generally made faster is one of attrition rather than fighting ability. Pilots tend to survive better and longer when they can pick and choose the place of combat or pick when to egress that combat. Classic example is the battle of Midway. Losing 4 carriers and a few hundred aircraft hurt Japan's war fighting ability for a few months. Losing 300 or so experienced pilots arguably led to their losing the war. At a minimum it stopped their offensive ability for some time.

Limiting the definition of "Energy Fighting" to just a BnZ maneuver is liking trying to play poker with just one card out of a deck.

To the poster's original question: Does the faster aircraft have an advantage once he takes off. The answer is maybe. It's not a matter of just pure speed. What matters is the mission objective and the delta of the energy between the "turn" fighter and the "speed" fighter when they merge.

If the speed fighter's job is to bomb a bridge and he can get in and out before the turn fighter can get into position then yes, he has the advnatage from takeoff. If he takes off and the turn fighter is already there and waiting for him and can engage him such the bomb run is aborted then the turn fighter had the advantage.

If the speed fighter takes off and his job is to shoot down the turn fighter and the turn fighter frustrates him and avoids getting killed or lures him into a turn fight then he had no advantage.

Ignoring the mission objectives is also a BIG mistake often made by vpilots. I often fly the Stuka. By all accounts pretty much every fighter aircraft I may encounter will have an advantage in speed, turn rate/radius and climb ability. Do I not even bother taking off since the outcome of the battle is pretty much pre-determined? No, I take-off and hide in clouds and sneak around to drop my big bomb on my target and then I sneak back home as best I can. If I make it then all those advantages were for nothing.

Energy "advantage" only comes into play when there is a merge. A merge can happen in three states--A Positive Energy merge (you have the advantage), a Neutral Energy merge (neither has the advantage), and a Negative Energy Merge (you are at a disadvantage). Each is fought differently and different components come into play in each scenario. A speed fighter might have the speed advantage in a merge but if the turn fighter he is engaging has better altitude and position then he is in a negative merge state.

The one other aspect of the dogfight missing here is visual acquisition. Seeing your opponent before he sees you. It is the best advantage of all. A pure dogfight is not the fantasy of two knights jousting honorably riding their mighty steeds. A pure dogfight is coming in on your prey with fangs out and hair on fire to take him out before he even knows you are there. real dogfighting is much more like an assasination then a joust and is how most pilots are killed.

11-11-2004, 08:02 AM
Energy fighting isn't B'n'Z.

Usually the heavier plane with better accelaration makes the better energy fighter, while the one with the bigger wing usually is the turnfighter.

Energy fighters prefer vertical turning, turnfighters horizontal.

However, the turnfighter can very well have better climb and speed, thus arriving on the scene in commanding position, engaging and disengaging at will.

11-11-2004, 08:15 AM
especially when the energyfighter is a FW...they are not good at BnZ, climb is not the best and the "hang on prop and shoot planes" will have an easy target spraying a climbing FW...

11-11-2004, 08:19 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by El Turo:
Just because I think it is relative.. an explanation of BnZ defense and possible counters against:

Not to dispute the tactics that you posted, they're all well and good. Good, that is, if the guy in the TnB type a/c knows he's being BnZ'd.

My preference is a well executed bounce. Hunt from way high up. Try, if possible, to be up-sun, and come screaming down and blast him before he even knows what's happened. Hit or miss, with all that speed, maybe you might set up for another pass, maybe. After that you take what energy you have and beat it the heck outta there.

Otherwise, if he does see your first pass comming then it helps to use some of the advice you posted after you've made your run. Have your teammates help out (always best to fly as a team), head for friendly airspace or friendly airbase. And hey, clouds are your friends, use 'em to your advantage.

11-11-2004, 09:35 AM
Great replies once again!

WWSensei, there are a lot of valid points you bring up, but like others I have seen in the thread, you seem to blur the end-conclusion by adding more parameters, thereby increasing the variables and complexity of the problem. You'll say "war and in particular aerial combat ARE complex", and you'd be exactly right.

However, we are trying to isolate just one part of it and arrive at some conclusions. Therefore, in the interests of focus, I think it needs further clarifying that we are talking about energy and turn FIGHTERS, not attack aircraft, not bombers, not transports. The objective is singular and shared by both sides: SHOOT THE OTHER GUY DOWN.

The term "energy", as used in aerial combat, really describes potential energy. The "energy" that any given aircraft has at any given point is equal to its speed+altitude. That can then be translated into turning ability expressed in Gs, speed expressed in knots, and altitude expressed in feet. At least that's the basis of it. There are tens of other variables that play in like engine RPM, flap status, oil mixture etc. But the whole point is assessing how much energy a given fighter can produce at any given point.

"Energy fighters" have by their design more "energy reserves" meaning that all things being equal (they start on the ground, at the same time, from the same altitude), the energy fighter will reach the merge with more potential.

You can argue and say that in reality the Turn fighter can also climb high and fly fast and negate the advantage that a potential "energy fighter" that could be roaming in the area may have. But again, if the energy guy does everything right, he still holds that advantage.

Great discussion! Hoping to read more of you guys!;-)

11-11-2004, 09:37 AM
BTW, JaBo_HH-BlackSheep, what is that piper on your sig? I assume its PS work right?

El Turo
11-11-2004, 10:30 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>The term "energy", as used in aerial combat, really describes potential energy <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/10.gif Kinetic energy is also in existence, which more or less equates to raw airspeed.


As for the BnZ defense I posted, yes, it assumes that visual contact has been made between the parties. The object is to try and create separation and balance in energy states actively instead of relying and depending on the other guy to make an error. Keep in mind, such a scenario isn't plausible for a situation where the energy states are already relatively equal, where remaining agressive is more likely to pay off with a firing solution. This particular technique is more for the situation where your bandit has a FAR superior energy state and you have no hope at the onset of climbing after them for a snap shot.

By establishing horizontal separation you are forcing your bandit to make a difficult choice. Does HE reverse his course sharply and try to climb back over you again (and burn energy in doing so), or immediately reverse and make a new firing pass (with an elongated interception, burning up more energy).

In either case, you are dictating the fight and he is responding to your initiative instead of the other way around. Depending on the relative abilities of the aircraft and pilots, an equitable energy state may be achieved in only one or two passes, at which time we may attempt a reversal on our bandit and go for a kill shot or at least a damaging snap shot.

11-11-2004, 10:41 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Hans_Philipp:
BTW, JaBo_HH-BlackSheep, what is that piper on your sig? I assume its PS work right? <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

it is one and the same picture, one with cockpit view and the other one from the only gunsight view...nothing special
but we are getting of topic:

i'd vote vor the energy-fighter.
but it all depends on the abilitys of the two A/Cs encountering each other..

11-11-2004, 01:23 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>The term "energy", as used in aerial combat, really describes potential energy. The "energy" that any given aircraft has at any given point is equal to its speed+altitude. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I understand your wanting to simplify the concept and that is fine but you cannot simplify energy as just being speed+altitude. You must include turn rate ability as a component. Energy state is defined by the combination of those three components. You trade off the three.

A "turn" fighter will have a greater potential energy vector in turn rate that may equal or exceed the speed vector advantage by the "speed" fighter.

Simplifying the argument is fine but eliminating key components presents a one-sided and very inaccurate picture.

11-11-2004, 02:03 PM
Sensei, you are talking about performance, which is a product of energy...Let me clarify.

Energy as described in air combat is either kinetic or potential.

An aircraft's kinetic energy is proportional to its mass and speed.

An aircraft's potential energy is proportional to the weight of the aircraft and its distance to the ground.

Gravity transforms potential energy into more kinetic energy. Therefore, when we talk about an aircraft's energy state, we refer to the net potential + kinetic energy it has. In simple terms, that is speed + altitude. The only missing factor here is weight which we eliminate for convenience. "Turn rate ability" has absolutely nothing to do with it. If you want to quantify it in feet, I believe that the expression for what is termed "specific energy" is:
Es = H +V^2/2g

I mentioned engine power in my previous post. That is a force that can alter an aircraft's energy state (Hp/Thrust and Drag). That is termed "specific excess power" and is measured in ft/sec. ( I don't remember this one).

I didn't want to get down to this type of discussion but rather focus on the tactical aspects of the problem, but I felt that some clarifying was in order so as to help arrive at better conclusions.

I hope you don't still see my posts as trying to present an innacurate picture.

El Turo
11-11-2004, 02:33 PM
What Hans said.

11-11-2004, 04:30 PM

To start let me clarify that I consider our discussion nothing more than a friendly exchange over a virtual beer. ;-)

I understand completly what is meant by energy. As a former F-16 pilot with nearly 300 hours of combat time and over 3000 hours of high performance jet aircraft and an ACM instructor I'm quite familiar with the concepts of energy fighting.

The measures you mention are appropriate measures of energy IF you only consider the speed and altitude components of energy fighting. In the old days those were the only two aspects considered but that mode of thinking has long since been changed. (Boyd changed much with his ideas and use of EC Charts.)

To assume "turn rate ability" (which can be measured via wing-loading (among other things) and varies according to a given speed is simply ignoring one VERY important aspect of an energy fight. It is no more valid to leave it out than it is leave speed.

Energy state as defined in air combat is NOT limited to just kinetic and potential. If you leave out specific energy you are missing a crucial element that is necessary when discussing energy tactics. That was the point I was trying to make. A classic example was the design of the F-111. According to "classic" concepts of energy only being potential and kinetic the F-111 should have reigned supreme. It was only when it's true Energy state was calculated (using all the attributes) and compared to other aircraft that it was shown to be inferior to nearly every potential aircraft it would face in every envelope of performance.

11-11-2004, 08:06 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by WUAF_Badsight:
ive flamed Me262,s with the J8A

so the answer is no <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

So waht? I have shot down LA7 with J8A. Head-on. Online.http://acompletewasteofspace.com/forum/images/smiles/laugh.gif

And I'm not BSing you.

11-11-2004, 08:43 PM
E is not speed

E is not Altitude

11-12-2004, 12:27 AM
Sensei, I share your sentimentsand especially that bar-drinking part!;-)

I didn't mean to preach to the choir, you just gave me the impression from your previous post that you were confusing some terms. Now that I know this isn't a matter of knowledge but rather more one of opinion, let me tell you why I disagree with you.

"Energy Maneuverability" is comprised by speed, altitude, drag, thrust, weight, and load factor and is the ability of an aircraft to change its energy state.

If you want to quantify the maneuvering potential of any aircraft at any given point, you use the above(Ps equations again), and add to that more factors (especially in modern fighters) such as thrust vectoring, elevator authority and anything else you can think off.

These factors, when combined with the classic energy equation will produce results such as turn rate, turn radius, etc. That's an endless discussion though IMO, and one with little practical application since I will rarely start solving expressions when I spot the bad guy!:-)

So how can these principles help us? In a WWII fighter, turn performance isn't the only thing that worries me, so I'll tend to go back to the basics and wother about the guys' overall energy state. That can quickly be deduced to speed and altitude, which are the ONLY two factors I can judge, and semi-quantify. Remember that I am comparing thse value to myself so I don't need a number, I just need a "greater than" or "less than" answer. (Is he higher? Is he faster?)

When I can distinguish a/c type, I can also have a rough idea of what this bogey can do by thinking about how quickly and by how much he can convert that energy advantage into geometrical positioning (turn fighter), or for how long he can terain and even inrcrease that advantage (energy fighter). That's pretty much his potential energy.

I agree that wing loading has an important role to play and not just to compute cool numbers. You can use a general greater than/less than rule in the air once you see that other guy to determine what he can do with that energy. But computing potential energy to arrive at singular conclusions (he has more or less than the other guy, means nothing in the air IMO.) Since a BF-109 has better values at some factors of the potential energy equation and a Spitfire better values at some others, it means nothing to say who has the overall advantage. Each is dominant in a different spectrum of potential energy.

However, tactically, we are arrive at my previous case in point:

The Energy Fighter dictates the terms of the fight.

Even with kinetic energy being equal, (and not just the takeoff at same time/altitude example) the "energy" fighter will be able to press or extend, gather up more energy than the other guy (starts to climb, floors his engine and also accelerates) and generally be out of reach for the other guy who is left wallowing underneath him.

The reason the "energy fighter" is called that, is because he can amass more energy than the other guy. If you want to give them better names, I'd name the energy guy as the "Raiser" and the turn guy as the "Spender" (as in raise/spend energy). The Raiser can amass more energy, spend it in brief spurts and maintain a tactical advantage. The Spender relies on dragging the Raiser down into a "Spending contest" because he can do this the fastest.

And it all comes down to the fact that the Raiser can leave (in WWII,and fortunately for him,he can do so without a FOX2 up his tailpipe), take a cofee break, and re-merge after raising more energy to spend wisely.

Anyway, I think we agree more than was initially apparent. BTW, being a former F-16 pilot, do give the YP-80 in IL-2 a ride... It will bring you back very fond memories!:-)

11-12-2004, 07:23 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Hans_Philipp:



I feel I must piont out that BnZ is not energy fighting. I fly the Jug quite a bit. Just because I dive on someone with an energy advantage, that dosen't mean I think I'm energy fighting or actually doing it.

In the same way, if your merely pulling the stick back into your round hairy paunch (personal experience http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-surprised.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-very-happy.gif)), it takes no more skill than a mechanical, robotic BnZ with no real energy fighting involved. Just because there's a vertical component dosen't mean it's E fighting either.

Fighting to gain E while denying or making your opponent lose E is energy fighing, and takes on aspects of both TnB and BnZ.

In this way, an I-153 can "BnZ" a Jug, and a Jug can out turn a Zero at stall speeds. It's a question of forcing the opponent into energy bleeding manuevers while retaining and increasing your own.

11-12-2004, 08:23 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Anyway, I think we agree more than was initially apparent. BTW, being a former F-16 pilot, do give the YP-80 in IL-2 a ride... It will bring you back very fond memories!:-) <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

That it does. ;-) I've gotten to ride about 6 hours in a T-33 (trainer version of the P-80 for those that don't recognize it) and it is my "guilty pleasure" for QMB battles...

11-12-2004, 08:30 AM
Oh yeah!

A buddy of mine who flys Vipers and who made instructors scream "Ease off the Geez!!" in his first few hours BFMing the jet, told me that he's never felt as bad as when as a 19 year old, he G-LOCed from the pitch rate of a T-33!!!

There's even an incident here with a single T-33 getting jumped by two F-16s across the fence (This is Greece BTW) and getting "kills" on both of them.;-)

Sweet bird, scary stick!;-)