Aeronautics and Air Combat Simulation
Aeronautics has traditionally incorporated a large number of disciplines, most importantly flight mechanics, aerodynamics, structural mechanics, and propulsion. Militarily, several other disciplines, such as signature techniques and sensor and system integration, have today become almost as vital for the design of the aerial platform.
FOI’s aeronautical activities provide concerted air-operational evaluation and development, where aeronautical competence is maximized by pooling the competence of its divisions in other arenas. The studies and evaluations of aircraft- and weapon systems that FOI performs are enabled by this broad and diverse base of expertise. FOI’s aeronautical research and applied activities are mainly within the fields of design concepts, aerodynamics, flight mechanics, radar and IR signature analysis, and missile technology. These activities constitute a base for development of systems engineering capability, platform system interaction, and platforms analysis and related modelling techniques for performance analysis. Advanced software models and weapons modelling techniques are continually developed for use both in studies and simulator training, for example at the Air Force Combat Simulation Centre, FLSC, which is operated by FOI.
The primary objectives of FOI’s aeronautical activities are:
- to support the requirement of the Armed Forces and the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration for technical studies and simulation models;
- to perform research and development within aeronautics;
- to maintain and develop expert knowledge in the fields of aerodynamics, IR signatures, radar cross-section evaluations, and flight mechanics, to secure a system assessment ability;
- to constitute an industry-independent government authority in aeronautics.
Traditionally, FOI’s concept studies have been concerned with how emerging technical challenges and solutions may affect basic aircraft configurations, as well as with detailed technical solutions.
Concept studies has now been complemented by studies of existing, but relatively unknown, concepts. This multi-disciplinary activity is now more focused on studying aerial threats, such as unmanned aerial systems and missiles. Its purpose is performance analysis, which can then be translated into models for simulations. Especially in the case of missiles, the models are adapted to FLSC, the Swedish Air Force Combat Simulation Centre.
FOI performs weapons system evaluations, on the combat technical and tactical levels, of both the Swedish Armed Forces and of external threat forces. This requires thorough domain knowledge of ground, sea and air combat. Specific knowledge of different weapons systems and of suitable tools and methods for evaluation are also required. This diverse range of knowledge and technical specifications is provided by FOI’s various areas of operation, including concept studies.