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CHAPTER NINE
BASIC FIGHTER MANEUVERING (BFM) THEORY
Closure rate (Vc) is the hardest of these basic principals to grasp. The fighter crew must
visualize how fast range to the bogey is changing. Closure must be controlled in order to either
achieve or maintain a positional advantage. If excessive closure on a bogey cannot be
controlled, an overshoot is likely. An overshoot may result in complete loss of the offensive
advantage.
Pursuit Curves
The concept of pursuit geometry between attacker and defender in the BFM environment is basic
to every tactical maneuver. Pursuit curves are technically defined by the orientation of the
attacking aircraft's velocity vector. Since the fighter crew does not always have an indication of
the precise direction of their velocity vector, nose position may be substituted as a reference. In
maneuvering situations, these two references (velocity vector and nose position) will be treated
as the same for our purposes.
Depending on where your nose is pointed, you will fly a distinctive pursuit curve in relation to
your opponent (Figure 9-10). There are three basic types of pursuit curves:
1.
Lead Pursuit
2.
Pure Pursuit
3.
Lag Pursuit
Figure 9-10 Pursuit Curves
Each type of pursuit curve will be defined in terms of their effect on range, angle-off-the-tail
(AOT) of your opponent, and closure rate (Vc). As discussed earlier in this chapter, these are the
key factors to being able to get to and maintain a guns firing solution.
9-16
BASIC FIGHTER MANEUVERING (BFM) THEORY


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