A Russian Super-Jet Flew So Fast It Blew Up Its Own Engines
War Is Boring

I remember hearing a (unclassified) discussion of the Foxbat in the late ’70s (from a guest speaker to our ROTC detachment.) A couple things stuck with me after 40 years:
(1) The interception profile was almost like a monkey in the space capsule. The pilot would take off. The ground intercept facility would take over and fly the aircraft to the intercept point. A (female :-) voice would tell the pilot he was cleared to engage (“push the big red button now.”) Then the ground controller would vector the aircraft back, and the same voice would tell the pilot to land the aircraft.

(2) The Japanese and US opened the aircraft and saw a bunch of little tiny (acorn shaped) vacuum tubes. They started making fun of this, because “Ivan hasn’t invented transistors yet.” But then they realized how sophisticated these analog circuits were, and they didn’t laugh quite so hard. But more importantly, they realized that the entire tube-based avionics suite was EMP-hardened. All-of-a-sudden, they stopped laughing. (That meant the Soviets could ‘pop a high altitude nuke’, generate a whole lot of EMP, and still fly, while Western aircraft avionic systems were fried by that pulse.)

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