IFR Experiment returns (this time sr2020)

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SGTscuba
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IFR Experiment returns (this time sr2020)

#1 Post by SGTscuba » Aug 17 2009

I am gonig to experiment with IFR in 2020, I also did it for 2010, and apparently little has changed between the games. Its more the units have changed. I will test various units and see whether it is easier on 2020 then on 2010. The thread for 2010 is here:

http://www.bgforums.com/forums/viewtopi ... =2&t=11053

Can this be sticked please?

I would also be interested to find out your experiences of it and whether or not you use it and why.
Last edited by SGTscuba on Aug 17 2009, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: IFR Experiment returns (this time sr2020)

#2 Post by SGTscuba » Aug 17 2009

My IFR experiment.

I will be testing out 2 tankers for now, I will be super strengthing them (they will have same effect as normal as all my air units are superstrengthed):

Russian IL-78 Midas
US Kc-135E stratotanker

I will be refueling various aircraft types:

B52 (US Strat bomber)
CH-53D sea stallion
MIG-35 OVT Fulcrum
F-5E Tiger II

I will test out other aircraft, but for now only these because I have not yet got the build capacity (I am testing these under war conditions).

I am playing as Sicily/Sardinia in a Shattered world no units scenario.

My plan is to use the tankers to extend the range of my F-5E's, so they are able to go from Sicily and Malta and attack Cyprus in support of my ground troops. The range is approx 3600km Altogther. This is almost twice the range of the plane. Therefore I will use a tanker to fly there, keep the tanker out at sea to avoid the AA fire (there will be no AA fire) whilst the bombers head inland, do their bombing run, then hook up with the tanker just in international waters, and get escorted home by the tanker.
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Re: IFR Experiment returns (this time sr2020)

#3 Post by SGTscuba » Aug 18 2009

I would first of all like to thank admin for stickying the post. Many thanks go to you.

There are 3 characteristics of a good tanker plane:

Range - It must have decent range in order to be able to fly as far as it needs to take the planes, and back.
Fuel - It needs a huge fuel tank as it is going to have to refill other planes. A smaller tank means less range and less planes that can be supported. CV based ones tend to suck for this very reason, and actually have less range then a INT once it has refueled it.
Speed - Not too fast but not too slow. Too slow and fuel will be wasted because of constant moving by other planes, as they will start to circle when escorting. Not too fast as this means they could outrun the planes, leaving them without fuel and crashing.

If you have any suggestions on good tankers from around the world, please say here. Nation/ Tech level (if known) and range, fuel and speed.

I will also be testing the SU-37 Berkut as these have recently been built by my country.

I have decided that refueling a B-52 from empty will be next to suicide, as its tank is larger then that of the tanker. So I will not be testing it in this experiment.

Off-topic but I have found out that you can load troops into amphib transports from bridges, even if the troops aren't amphib. Is this a bug?

My tankers are now under construction, and should be ready for the next installment of my experiment.
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Re: IFR Experiment returns (this time sr2020)

#4 Post by Hullu Hevonen » Aug 18 2009

IFR?
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Re: IFR Experiment returns (this time sr2020)

#5 Post by Foxbyte » Aug 18 2009

Hullu Hevonen wrote:IFR?
I think he means In-Flight Refueling?

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Re: IFR Experiment returns (this time sr2020)

#6 Post by SGTscuba » Aug 18 2009

yes, IFR means In flight Refueling, AKA transfering fuel from 1 plane to another.
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Re: IFR Experiment returns (this time sr2020)

#7 Post by SGTscuba » Aug 18 2009

I am also wondering if planes are able to tranfser their cargo supplies as fuel if they are tankers, this will also be trialed, and also to see if their internal supplies can be resupplied in the game by tankers (maybe a glitch).

IF they are able to transfer cargo as fuel, then this will add a fourth important feature of the tanker - Cargo Capacity. This would be cool, especially as cargo is worth many times its weight in fuel (what is the ratio, anyone know?). Otherwsie my tankers will have to fly them their, fly back and refuel and come back whilst the planes are doing their mission, which could be very costly in terms of fuel, as they are liekly to be at their limit of endurance by the time they get back, unless I provide 2 tankers - one there, one back.

My tanker is now complete and I am upstrengthing it and repairing it ready for test operations, before I take it medium distance over Cyprus.
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Re: IFR Experiment returns (this time sr2020)

#8 Post by SGTscuba » Aug 18 2009

I have just realised that helo's with cargo are able to resupply themselves whilst landed, from cargo supplies, this is happening in enemy territoy, I think this may also be how IFR is (sorta) supposed to work, and in my opnion should. Cargo from the tanker is given to the other plane as fuel, just like a supply truck does for a tank for example, this would be a way of stopping them from crashing because they run out of fuel, just like they did in 2010.

My Test:

Because I am inpatient, I am not going to let my tanker be fully repaired to super strength, but it is still overstrengthed (14 out of 18).

I will get an SU-37 and fly them both out to sea, just a little off the island just incase something goes wrong. The SU-37 will escort the tanker (because it is faster). I will then see if the cargo of the tanker drops any, and this will confirm whether or not cargo is important.

Nope, not a single bit of cargo left the tanker, meaning that it is not converted into fuel, which would be nice as it would act as a safety. (please add if possible)

This will mean that I will have to use 2 tankers to get my fighters to the target. 1 to go and 1 to return.
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Re: IFR Experiment returns (this time sr2020)

#9 Post by SGTscuba » Aug 18 2009

The IL-78 Midas looks like the best tanker I have, big tanker, good speed and good range, I now have one, it is repairing, it will be the return plane, and hopefully should I get another, the going plane, although this may have to be my Stratotanker.

The VC-10 also look good, simliar fuel size, but 22kkm range, which means it is very efficient.

The F-5E super strength will burn aprrox 500 fuel per 2kkm. This means that it will take 1000 fuel to do the round trip, without the bombing included. This will make the IL-78 very useful as it can possibly support 7 of them. I am planning on setting up stacks of planes, because they might all have the bright idea of having fuel off just 1 plane, despite their being enough to go around, and consequentially losing tankers. I may try this later on to see if they drain it (over territory, close to fueling base).

Hmm, Supplies seem to have gone out of the Stratotanker, where could these have gone too???? The fuel on the tanker has gone up to near full, after flying there, circling and giving a load of fuel to the fighters. This must be a way of supplying them. This is good news and means that Cargo is relevant, contary to my previous belief. TO get them to do it I sent my planes back to them, so this may be the trick to getting them to use their cargo.

Observations:

Weird, very Weird. The tanker goes down to a certain level of fuel, and then it will top up its fuel from the cargo. This makes it an even longer ranged plane. The KC-135E looks even better then the IL-78 because of this fact. Also I noticed that when my planes had run out of ammo, they flew to the tanker, and kept circling with it (liek escorting). I returned the tanker to base, and they followed the tanker back to base, despite me giving them no orders what so ever besides to bomb the target. Once we got back to base, they resupplied amoo and tried to attack Cyprus again, and somehow ended up in Israel, which should be just out of their range.

Will try other things tommorow but for now I will just keep trying this over again, and will report again if anything else happens.
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Re: IFR Experiment returns (this time sr2020)

#10 Post by SGTscuba » Aug 18 2009

Cyprus fell, I gave them yet another pounding from F-5E's. I am putting my tankers on slowest speed as some of my bombers struggled to keep up (they don't get orders immediatly)

Error corrected - Israel is within range, just about, and only from a one way flight. My next plan is to attack Lebanon or an African nation, so that I actually have my foot on a large espance of land.
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Re: IFR Experiment returns (this time sr2020)

#11 Post by catatonic » Sep 08 2009

I inadvertently did an IFR experiment when I took China.

As you know, when you conquer a region there is a 24 hour period during which the supply system switches over to you - all of the captured enemy units develop red bars because all of their supplies are stolen from them, but not their fuel. Captured units refuse to go into reserve during this period.

In the case of China I inherited about eight air-fields surrounded by clouds of aircraft - anywhere from 60 to 120 aircraft per airbase, of mixed types. What would happen was that these aircraft would circle their air-fields for the 24 hours. The large aircraft like patrol, bombers and tankers had plenty of fuel - no problem.

But the smaller fighters would burn through their fuel in less than 24 hours. Some I suppose were able to claw their way onto the run-way and refuel a little, but it was impossible to tell with that many aircraft. The fighters almost went dry, but somehow they kept getting just enough fuel to keep flying - until the 24 hours passed.

When the clock turned over to the next day the airbases would light up with flaming aircraft. Again, it was hard to tell just what type of AC were crashing. I kept re-playing the incedent, trying to figure it out and to save as many of my shiny new air-toys as I could.

As you know, there is a SR2020 bug that allows a tanker plane to give up ALL of its fuel so that it goes empty and crashes. Part of what was happening was that once the 24 hours was up, all of the AC in the cloud were hungry for fuel, so they would suck the tankers dry and the tankers would explode. I solved this by moving all of the tankers to safely circle out over the bay.

This left the fighter planes. I off-loaded as many planes to un-used air-fields as I could find, so now I had more like 16 smaller clouds of aircraft. Then I pre-loaded all fighter planes with an order to return to reserve. This worked pretty well - the larger Super Tiger fighters mostly went safely into reserve when the 24 hours was up. Only a few of the smaller fighers destructed.
"War is merely the continuation of politics [diplomacy] by other means"
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Re: IFR Experiment returns (this time sr2020)

#12 Post by SGTscuba » Jun 03 2010

New data I have gathered whilst on my hols:

IFR experiment continued

Yes, it has been a while since I last did this. I am trying out more planes this time and some new techniques. I am playing as the UK in the SR2020 no units scenario, with update 6 vanilla SR2020.

I am going to go and fight Ireland, who, in this scenario, do not have an airforce. I am going to use 4 AV-8b's to start with and try and keep them in the air using a variety of methods.

Method 1 - Tanker has patrol order between an airfield and the attack zone.

This has the benefit's of making sure the tanker always goes back to base in order to get fuel on a reguler basis, making it less likely to crash.

The drawbacks of this are that it may miss the refueling all together, making it a pointless exercise, as well as spending very little time at the front where it is needed to fuel planes.

I cannot wait for the war with Ireland so I am going to test this one over UK territories against a hypothetical target. I am going to lanuch the planes from Mid-Wales where my huge airfield's are, against Scapa Flow, a distance of 650km, with the Harriers having a range of 2200km.

This works pretty well, but i already have spotted a flaw, they cannot get extended range from doing this, just extended time over the target.


Method 2 - Tankers will be scrambled to stay over the target to begin with.

They will stay over the target until their fuel runs out, maybe by default you should make them run off when they get to less than 20% fuel, as i almost lost the one tanker, although i did manage to keep the 4 Harriers in the air for almost a week.


Method 3 - have the bombers escort the tankers

This allows you to extend the range, and the bombers will keep up with the tankers as they are faster than them.

Biggest issue is that it requires extensive micromanagement as the bombers won't attack (will correct this later on), and will need to be reassigned escort on the way back, make sure you use the same type of tanker as the tankers need to all be in the same hex. This will be tried to see if they take fuel from all, or just the one being escorted.

I correct myself on this issue, just went to war with Ireland, sent tankers in with Harrier escort and they dropped their bombs, got the kills and continued to follow the tanker. They also take fuel from both tankers, even though the they all have the escort order for only one.

This is beginning to prove the value of these long-range strike groups. it would probably be easy enough to set them up in patrol to attack from distance, or to use them in circles to do this in order to not get hit by grounds troops AA stats.
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Re: IFR Experiment returns (this time sr2020)

#13 Post by Ruges » Jun 03 2010

I use method 1. its has the best results for me and requires to least amount of micro-managing. One of the things I suggest for this method is to use several planes in the patrol and stagger them. This way there is always a tanker near the desired refueling point. Also have them set to the slowest speed. The location they will be patroling should be a half to three quarters the max flight path of the attack planes. (so when the attack planes reach BINGO, the nearest fueling stop will be the tanker) They will top off and continue the patrol.

For even longer flight paths you can setup several of these air gas station in a row to extend the range of your aircraft indefenatly.

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Re: IFR Experiment returns (this time sr2020)

#14 Post by SGTscuba » Jun 03 2010

i will try this idea out and post my results. Leaving tankers to patrol between airfield and near the attack zone, going in pairs and with several groups staggered, although i do prefer to have the fighters escort the tankers because they will still bomb and fire missiles.
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Re: IFR Experiment returns (this time sr2020)

#15 Post by Ruges » Jun 04 2010

just make sure you dont move your fighters in such a large group as to overwhelm a single tanker.

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