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Who the hell makes the decisions to fire Patriot Missiles at our jets?

dahunan

Lifer
Jan 10, 2002
18,191
1
0
In the first days of the war a Patriot missile battery shot down an RAF Tornado, killing two airmen.

Last week a US F16 jet fired on and destroyed a Patriot missile battery after it locked on to the jet and prepared to fire.

And yesterday we destroyed a F-18 Hornet too

Who in the hell makes these decisions? :|
 

dahunan

Lifer
Jan 10, 2002
18,191
1
0
Originally posted by: her209
He does.
Thank you very much

The radar antenna scans the sky looking for incoming targets. Once it finds a target, it scans it more intensely and communicates with the ECS. The goal of the scan is to determine the speed and heading of the target and also to identify it as a friend or a foe. When the operator or computer decides that it has an incoming foe, the ECS calculates an initial heading for the Patriot missile. It chooses the Patriot missile it will launch, downloads the initial guidance information to that missile and launches it

The ECS
The ECS van is the command center of the Patriot missile battery. The ECS contains stations for three operators as well as the computers that control the battery. The radar antenna and all of the launchers in the battery connect to the ECS, and Patriot missiles in flight also communicate with the ECS.
Inside the van there are two radar consoles. Operators can see the status of all of the targets that the system is currently tracking. Operators can let the system run in fully automatic mode, or they can intervene to select or deselect targets. There is also a communication station that allows the battery to communicate with other batteries or with the command center for the region.
 

shiner

Lifer
Jul 18, 2000
17,116
0
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Considering the amount of aircraft in the air at any given time things like this should be expected. The fact that it doesn't happen more often is what is amazing and is a testament to our military and it's procedures and equipment.
 

dahunan

Lifer
Jan 10, 2002
18,191
1
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Why doesn't the military have a way for Patriots to better identify our aircraft?

and

Did this happen in Desert Storm?
 

charrison

Lifer
Oct 13, 1999
17,033
1
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Originally posted by: dahunan
Why doesn't the military have a way for Patriots to better identify our aircraft?

and

Did this happen in Desert Storm?
No, but the Patriot system has received 2 upgrades since then.
 

DoctorPizza

Banned
Jun 4, 2001
106
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The fact that it doesn't happen more often is what is amazing and is a testament to our military and it's procedures and equipment.
Given that the planes are squawking who they are and that they're good guys, that such FF incidents should happen at all boggles the mind.
 

charrison

Lifer
Oct 13, 1999
17,033
1
81
Originally posted by: DoctorPizza
The fact that it doesn't happen more often is what is amazing and is a testament to our military and it's procedures and equipment.
Given that the planes are squawking who they are and that they're good guys, that such FF incidents should happen at all boggles the mind.
There such things as equipment failures. 2000 sorties a day are happening over iraq right now.
 

shiner

Lifer
Jul 18, 2000
17,116
0
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Originally posted by: DoctorPizza
The fact that it doesn't happen more often is what is amazing and is a testament to our military and it's procedures and equipment.
Given that the planes are squawking who they are and that they're good guys, that such FF incidents should happen at all boggles the mind.
Technology isn't perfect you know. Accidents do happen. Nitpicking incidents like a Patriot shooting down a plane is very petty. Yes, it it unfortunate but it isn't the end of the world. I suppose you would prefer we just go back to the days when we had no missile defense system. Or maybe we should resort to throwing rocks....

 

dahunan

Lifer
Jan 10, 2002
18,191
1
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Originally posted by: shinerburke
Originally posted by: DoctorPizza
The fact that it doesn't happen more often is what is amazing and is a testament to our military and it's procedures and equipment.
Given that the planes are squawking who they are and that they're good guys, that such FF incidents should happen at all boggles the mind.
Technology isn't perfect you know. Accidents do happen. Nitpicking incidents like a Patriot shooting down a plane is very petty. Yes, it it unfortunate but it isn't the end of the world. I suppose you would prefer we just go back to the days when we had no missile defense system. Or maybe we should resort to throwing rocks....
I understand your defensive stance, but I could care less about the plane.. the pilot is who I care about.
 

RyanM

Platinum Member
Feb 12, 2001
2,387
0
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I think it's about time we come up with a reliable IFF system. Encrypted, spread spectrum transmissions should be all that's needed to ensure anyone on the radar emitting a friendly beep REALLY is friendly, and then we can avoid stuff like this.
 

charrison

Lifer
Oct 13, 1999
17,033
1
81
Originally posted by: MachFive
I think it's about time we come up with a reliable IFF system. Encrypted, spread spectrum transmissions should be all that's needed to ensure anyone on the radar emitting a friendly beep REALLY is friendly, and then we can avoid stuff like this.
That still does not account for system failures.
 

RyanM

Platinum Member
Feb 12, 2001
2,387
0
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Certainly not - But it would account for any incidents where the computer fires on what appears to be an approaching enemy rocket/aircraft. Nothing will ever solve technical malfunctions, but every possible step that can be taken to ensure there is one less method for misfire should be taken. This seems to be the next logical one, seeing as how we're becoming ever more reliant on the decisions of machines.
 

swifty3

Banned
Nov 24, 2001
392
0
0
Originally posted by: dahunan
In the first days of the war a Patriot missile battery shot down an RAF Tornado, killing two airmen.

Last week a US F16 jet fired on and destroyed a Patriot missile battery after it locked on to the jet and prepared to fire.

And yesterday we destroyed a F-18 Hornet too

Who in the hell makes these decisions? :|

Ok youngster, one day u will learn that accidents happen, and that the world is far from being perfect, or even mildy predictable.

 

RyanM

Platinum Member
Feb 12, 2001
2,387
0
0
Originally posted by: iwearnosox
Originally posted by: Morph
Americans are known to have itchy trigger fingers.
Me especially. Can I come over and show you mine?
/me cackles (that's right f*ckers, I'm actually cackling) in delight
 

Fencer128

Platinum Member
Jun 18, 2001
2,700
1
71
Have there been any Iraqi aircraft flying since this war began? Does a plane move like a missile? I would have thought it would these were two discriminating factors that could affect the decision to fire.

Cheers,

Andy
 

RossGr

Diamond Member
Jan 11, 2000
3,383
1
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IFF (Identification, Friend or Foe) has been around for a long time and is reliable. BUT it is a 2 part system, the ground radar sends a ID request, then the transponder on the plane replies. I thought I heard mention that the Brit shot down in the first days may have suffered a transponder malfunction. Perhaps the same Is true of this American plane. This is all electronics and electronics do fail. Considering the number of sorties being flown it is not surprising that something like this happens.
 

Fencer128

Platinum Member
Jun 18, 2001
2,700
1
71
Originally posted by: RossGr
IFF (Identification, Friend or Foe) has been around for a long time and is reliable. BUT it is a 2 part system, the ground radar sends a ID request, then the transponder on the plane replies. I thought I heard mention that the Brit shot down in the first days may have suffered a transponder malfunction. Perhaps the same Is true of this American plane. This is all electronics and electronics do fail. Considering the number of sorties being flown it is not surprising that something like this happens.
Maybe for the future a rendundant IFF transceiver system would be a good idea.

Cheers,

Andy
 

DoctorPizza

Banned
Jun 4, 2001
106
0
0
There such things as equipment failures. 2000 sorties a day are happening over iraq right now.
If a car had a similar failure rate it would be recalled and repaired.

IFF is hardly a new invention; it's pretty shocking that they still can't get it right.
 

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