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Old 11-01-2017, 01:54 PM   #11
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A well-known visual characteristic of the Hornet has always been the vaps down the length of the Leading Edge Extension (LEX) during hard maneuvering. As has been eluded to earlier, we’ve been working on a new effect to properly implement this in DCS World. Rather than a simple shape file, we’ve used a partical-based system to allow the vaps to be very dynamic and variable based on aircraft maneuvering and the humidity. Not only are vaps based on the AoA of the aircraft, the humidity level is also a huge factor. In addition this effect working along the LEX, it is also being used for over the wings when appropriate.

Attached is an early work in progress image of this effect.

In addition to the Hornet, we plan to apply this effect to other aircraft, and this tech has been passed to our 3rd parties to use for their aircraft.
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Old 11-04-2017, 06:01 PM   #12
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One of the planned air-to-air weapons for the Early Access will be the AIM-7 Sparrow. In addition to the M version, we also plan the F and P versions. While still very much work-in-progress, the AIM-7 SMS page is taking shape and some of the basic HUD symbology. Still Sparrow work to do on radar integration, along with FLOOD and HOJ modes.

Work on the caution and advisory system continues with good progress; this has been a very complex and time-intensive undertaking. Other areas being worked on are the bombing HUD modes, A/A radar, INS waypoint system, RWR, and countermeasures.
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Last edited by Wags; 11-04-2017 at 08:51 PM.
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Old 11-06-2017, 07:24 PM   #13
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There have been a lot of questions regarding what sensors and weapons will be available at the launch of the early access DCS: F/A-18C Hornet. This decision is based on balancing a great, first experience, while getting quickly into the hands of those prefer early access adoption. We realize that early access is not for everyone, but for many, it is. If you prefer a completed product, we ask that you wait for the final release. Take that time to monitor previews and early access reports to make an informed purchase.

We believe that starting with the more “simple” systems at early access roll-out allows a more shallow learning curve at the start. By then adding new systems gradually, it introduces the Hornet’s sensors and weapons in a more structured manner… much like what a real Hornet pilot goes through when learning the aircraft. This also allows us more time to fully develop the more complex systems in a way that delivers the most realistic experience possible.

Note that this is all very much subject to change for our mid-2000s F/A-18C USN Hornet.

Sensors:
  • A/A radar with RWS, STT, and ACM modes

Weapons:
  • Mk-82 series
  • Mk-83 series
  • Mk-84 series
  • CBU-99 and Mk-20 Cluster Bombs
  • BDU-33 Training Bomb
  • BDU-45 Training Bomb
  • 2.75 inch rockets
  • 5 inch rockets
  • 20mm cannon
  • AIM-9L/M and CATM Sidewinder
  • AIM-7F/M/P Sparrow

Following the early access release, we plan to include many more sensors, weapons, and decoys for the final product. Please note that this list is also subject to change:

Sensors:
  • A/A radar with TWS, SCAN RAID, AZ/EL
  • A/G radar with MAP, EXP1, EXP2, EXP3, SEA, GMT, PVU, AGR, IRA, and TA
  • AN/ASQ-228 ATFLIR Targeting Pod
  • Joint Helmet Mounted Cueing System (JHMCS)
  • Link-16
  • AWW-13 Datalink Pod
  • NVGs
Weapons:
  • AGM-88C HARM
  • AGM-45A/B Shrike
  • AGM-84D Block 1C Harpoon
  • AGM-84E SLAM
  • AGM-84H/K SLAM-ER
  • AGM-65E Maverick
  • AGM-65F/G Maverick
  • AGM-154A JSOW
  • AGM-154C JSOW
  • Walleye I ER/DL
  • Walleye II ER/DL
  • GBU-10 Paveway II
  • GBU-12 Paveway II
  • GBU-16 Paveway II
  • GBU-24B/B Paveway III
  • GBU-38 JDAM
  • GBU-31 JDAM
  • GBU-32 JDAM
  • AIM-9X Sidewinder
  • AIM-120B/C AMRAAM
  • Mk-40 Destructor Sea Mine
  • Mk-63 Quickstrike Sea Mine
  • Mk-77 Fire Bomb

Decoys:
  • ADM-141 TALD
  • GEN-X

Thanks
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Last edited by Wags; 01-25-2018 at 05:13 PM.
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Old 11-09-2017, 04:50 PM   #14
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It’s a small thing, but some of the art for the HUD camera control panel and the UFC has been cleaned up a bit. As these portions of the cockpit are often in your face, it’s pretty important to get these looking as good as possible.

Also, we have had to move the Mk-77 to the post-Early Access release list for weapons. Not only will the Mk-77 require a new object and napalm effect, but an all new warhead type needs to be created (quite different than HE and pen-aid warheads) and all units and objects will need to be updated to account for this all, new weapon type. As you might imagine, it's going to be a lot of work to support this.
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Old 11-14-2017, 05:57 PM   #15
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In case of a departure, the Hornet was provided a spin/departure recovery system that instructs the pilot on how to command the controls to exit a spin. However, this did not really help with a much more serious “falling leaf” departure... As the Hornet evolved, the Flight Control System (FCS) became advanced enough that the jet could automatically recover itself by simply taking hands off the controls and allow the jet to fly itself out of the departure. In fact, the spin recovery switch should not really be used in later F/A-18s.

However, to be complete, we plan to model this system. Here are some work-in-progress images of it in action.

It’s been a very long haul with the Caution and Advisory System that has entailed the simulation of many other systems that feed into it like electrical, fuel, hydraulic, navigation, mission computers, flight control system, engine, AMAD, TAWS, and others. However, we are getting pretty close now to have functions in place to create an authentic Hornet start up. Thanks for your patience on this.
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Old 11-16-2017, 04:12 PM   #16
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Another little improvement coming with the Hornet is an improve afterburner effect. It’s these little things that we hope to make the Hornet a truly great product.
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Old 11-27-2017, 09:41 PM   #17
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Let’s talk a little about sensors…

A key aspect of the Hornet early access release will be the air-to-air radar modes that consist of Range While Search (RWS), Single Target Track (STT), Latent Track While Scan (LTWS), and the Air Combat Maneuvering Mode of Boresight Acq (, Vertical Acq (VACQ), Wide Acq (WACQ), and Long Range Automatic Acq (AACQ). A lot of our efforts are now devoted to this.

Attached is an image just showing a symbol test. Several items are quite incorrect (it’s just a symbol test), so please don’t get too wrapped around the axle on this.

Once that is complete and the Early Access version of the Hornet has been released, we’ll be using the air-to-ground radar technology we’ve been developing over the past few years to create the A/G modes of the AN/APG-73 radar we are simulating. Our goal is to create the most realistic simulation of an A/G radar ever done for a game. This will be in addition to including the remaining A/A radar modes and functions.

Upon wrapping up the APG-73, we’ll move on to the ATFLIR, and at that time, develop a new and improved FLIR technology to provide the best and most realistic simulation of such a sensor.
You may also note in the image that we’ve been working on the lighting system for the IFEI. In fact, the panel was modified.

As for the Hornet start up video, we are just waiting on one critical item to be resolved with the caution and advisory system. The AV-8B will have the limelight to itself this weekend, but I hope to the Hornet start up video to you the week after… finally.
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Old 12-02-2017, 07:50 PM   #18
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As many of you know, we’ve had to push back the Hornet start up video much longer than we had originally hoped. This has primarily been due to getting most of the Caution and Advisories at start up correct. One of the more obvious start up elements is the ”deedle-deedle” and “flight controls, flight controls” audio at right engine start up. While it would be easy to simply script it at right engine start, we need to understand exactly what causes this and make sure we account for the factors that lead to it.

These audio elements in fact goes hand-in-hand with the Master Caution. Anytime a caution is triggered, the Master Caution light comes on the Master Caution Tone (“deedle-deele”) is heard. There are MANY items that can trigger a caution and this has been keeping the team busy the last couple of months. For a start-up, this is generally triggered by a Flight Control System (FCS) caution. There are several items that can lead to and FCS caution, but the one that we care about in this case is either a FLAP OFF or AIL OFF cautions. Either of these will in turn trip an FCS caution. An FCS caution in turns results in a “flight controls, flight controls” audio caution.

Unfortunately, despite having literally hundreds of Hornet manuals, there is no good information why these two FCS warnings manifest themselves at right engine start up. Through some of our great SMEs (Hornet pilots and ground crew), we now understand that these control surfaces can “droop” over time, once the aircraft shuts down (further than the FULL down position at shut down). When the aircraft starts up, the system sees this as an a flap or aileron failure and thus trips the caution. We are now in the process of updating the aircraft for accounting for control surface droop.

These would also be indicated on the FCS page and an FCS Reset and running a BIT would be required to clear them.

Anyhow, it’s these little details that we feel are important for the proper simulation of this aircraft, but it has resulted in additional development time. In the end, we think it will all be worth it and provide you the most authentic Hornet flight simulation for the PC.
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Old 12-11-2017, 12:34 PM   #19
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As we continue working on the Hornet’s system needed for a proper cold start video, I’ve put together this little video that shows off the Hornet flying around the updated Caucasus map for DCS World 2.5.

We are at the point that we are satisfied with the caution and advisories for the startup video. They will not be 100% complete, but all the major indications are now in. Last week I wrote the voice over script and handed it over to a couple Hornet pilots to review. While they are pleased with it, they noticed a few missing items. There are several items like setting up the ZTOD and FLBIT that are not mentioned in the NATOPS checklist, but we want to include to be thorough.
Also, for the next video, we plan for it to be more extensive and include pre-flight, startup, taxi, and takeoff.

In the meantime, we hope you enjoy this video.

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Old 12-14-2017, 04:47 PM   #20
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Just a short note today:

As of today, we are at the point where enough of the Hornet systems are functional to make a great, authentic Hornet startup video. I'm starting to create this video today. It will take a few days to complete the video.

Thanks!
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