Let's take SU-30 as an example:

enter image description here

The nose cone is clearly pointing a bit downwards with respect to the level of the engines and wings. Why is this? How can this kind of a banana even fly properly?

Here's the profile an F-18 for comparison:

enter image description here


marked as duplicate by Pondlife, bogl, Community Dec 8 '18 at 11:32

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  • $\begingroup$ +1 for calling it a banana. $\endgroup$ – mishaturnbull Dec 10 '18 at 17:17

The nose cone position depends upon the mission profile of the aircraft. Su-30 is a multirole fighter for all-weather, air-to-air and air-to-surface deep interdiction missions, since its air-surface with deep interdiction it needs to have a view of the ground while targeting ground troops/equipments/artillery. This nose down config helps it to have that view. F-18/F-16/F-15 are air superiority aircrafts. Yes same cannot be said for F-18 but then F-18 has many variants, F-18D which has air-ground support is slightly elevated pilot view for better ground view. Same can be seen in Eurofighter Typhoon and A-10 Thunderbolt.

While Su-15, Su-24 and Mig-27 where interceptors and bombers, they have straight nose just like their companions from the west.

  • $\begingroup$ Same principle was applied to Concorde nose, due to its long nose pilot wasn't able to see the runway. So they developed a way to lower its nose while taxi. This is beautifully demonstrated in this video (starts at 5:05 ) youtube.com/watch?v=2oiv4249sRU $\endgroup$ – Huntkil Dec 7 '18 at 22:02
  • $\begingroup$ I would like to know how this affects aerodynamics. $\endgroup$ – juzzlin Dec 8 '18 at 11:31
  • $\begingroup$ It makes SU-30 longitudinally unstable or we can say "relaxed stability". $\endgroup$ – Huntkil Dec 10 '18 at 16:18

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