CAS — Close Air Support

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Single target elimination. Vehicle attacks a tactical enemy of opportunity. In Tank Battles, this typically refers to fighting enemy tanks from the air with strike fighters and light bombers.


Basics

Close Air Support (CAS) are airstrikes by aircraft against enemy targets close by friendlies. Due to the close distance between friendly and enemy units, close coordination between air and ground is necessary for accurate deliveries of said support and reduce friendly fire. These support attacks can be done by low and high caliber machine-guns, cannons, unguided rockets, and bombs. The destruction of hostile ground targets such as tanks and pillboxes (as well as naval targets such as destroyers, landing craft, etc.) bleeds tickets away from your opponents score in virtually all Air Battles. If enough enemy Ground and/or Naval targets are destroyed, your team will win the match.

Payloads/Ordnance

All ground attack aircraft have access to either bombs, rockets, and/or high caliber cannons. Some have access to all three, some have only two, and some only have access to one, although usually CAS aircraft with only one of these options have access to a more effective weapon of that type.

Bombs

There are six steps to how a bomb causes damage

1. The blast wave from the explosion creates highly compressed air particles

2. Shockwaves carry energy throughout the medium

3. Fragmentation ( As a bomb typically refers to airdropped, unpowered explosive weapons most commonly used by air forces and naval aviation, these explosive weapons must have a containment method able to carry the explosive to it's target safely, thus some sort of canister, and thus creating something to break apart when an explosion is created.) throws shrapnel outward.

4. The exothermic reaction (in a bomb's case, an explosion) creates fire and heat

5. Intense heat can cause secondary fires or explosions.

6. The blast wind creates a vacuum that refills itself with air and pulls shrapnel back in.

In WarThunder, step three usually causes the most damage to vehicles and crew, as shrapnel penetrates the armour and rips apart crew most violently.

Rockets

Rockets are almost exactly the same to bombs in terms of how it destroys a target, But.

  1. A rocket is sent to it's target via it's own propulsion system, rather than gravity and any speed the plane had at the time of the ejection from the aircraft.
  2. Since a rocket must carry propulsion to carry it to it's target and not crash to the ground, a rocket contains almost always less explosive material than any conventional bomb, for the reason of weight so that the propulsion system can effectively maintain a constant speed horizontally until the fuel runs out.
  3. A rocket can penetrate armour via the force of the impact of the rocket to the armour, and then detonate. not via shrapnel entering from outside the vehicle. (but this can happen.)

High Caliber Guns

On Aircraft, two types of high caliber guns can be carried.

Autocannon.

Autocannon are high caliber cannons that deliver a bigger punch than smaller, less powerful machine guns, while still retaining "rapid" fire. They are the most common aircraft cannon. Some examples are:

20mm Hispano 404

20mm Hispano Mk. II

20mm Hispano Mk. V

20mm MG 151 /20

30mm Mk. 103 Cannon

23mm NS-23

23mm NR-23


Low-Rate Cannon.

Low-Rate Cannon are high caliber cannons that are designed for tank-busting, almost specifically meant for aircraft with CAS in mind, and do not have a "rapid" fire capability. Some examples are:

37mm NS-37

37mm BK 3,7

37mm Ho-203


War Thunder community damage chart for ground ordnance: Google doc chart

Bombs

bombs

bombs

Bombs

Nation Mass (nominal) Name Caliber Drag   Damage  
  Rating  
  Radius     Pen     Damage  
  Rating  
  Radius     Pen  
Bomb properties High explosive Fragmentation
Nation-de.png
Germany
1,000 kg SC 1000L2 450 33 360.4 30m 250mm 94.4 150m 15mm
250 kg SC 250Ja 285 16.9 6.3 10m 100mm 111 80m 12mm
50 kg SC 50Ja 152 4.3 0 3m 35mm 51.3 40m 10mm
500 kg SC 500K 392 23.7 100 25m 160mm 100 120m 15mm
10 kg SD 10C 152 0.8 0.3 5m 8mm 0 15m 5mm
10 kg SD 10a 152 0.8 0.5 5m 10mm 0 15m 5mm
Nation-jp.png
Japan
250 kg mod.25 mk 2 285 16.9 6.3 10m 100mm 111 80m 12mm
500 kg mod. 50 mk 2 392 23.7 100 25m 160mm 100 120m 15mm
800 kg mod. 80 mk 1 450 49.6 640.9 40m 250mm 94.4 150m 15mm
250 kg Type 92 mod. 25 285 16.9 6.3 10m 100mm 111 80m 12mm
500 kg Type 92 mod. 50 392 23.7 100 25m 160mm 100 120m 15mm
100 kg Type 94 mod. 10 267 9.3 0.9 6m 75mm 102.3 45m 12mm
50 kg Army Type 94 mod. 5 152 4.3 0 3m 35mm 51.3 40m 10mm
60 kg Type 97 mod. 6 152 4.3 0 3m 35mm 51.3 40m 10mm
250 kg Type 98 mod.25 285 16.9 6.3 10m 100mm 111 80m 12mm
800kg Type 99 mod. 25 450 49.6 640.9 40m 250mm 94.4 150m 15mm
800 kg Navy Type 99 No. 80 mod. 1 450 49.6 640.9 40m 250mm 94.4 150m 15mm
Nation-su.png
USSR
100 kg FAB-100 267 9.3 0.9 6m 75mm 102.3 45m 12mm
1,000 kg FAB-1000 450 33 360.4 30m 250mm 94.4 150m 15mm
250 kg FAB-250M-43 285 16.9 6.3 10m 100mm 111 80m 12mm
50 kg FAB-50 152 4.3 0 3m 35mm 51.3 40m 10mm
500 kg FAB-500 392 23.7 100 25m 160mm 100 120m 15mm
1,500 kg FAB-1500M-46 450 33 2452.7 70m 450mm 94.4 150m 15mm
3,000 kg FAB-3000M-46 450 33 8493.2 100m 500mm 94.4 150m 15mm
Nation-gb.png
Britain
453 kg 1000 lb GP 392 37 100 25m 160mm 100 120m 15mm
453 kg 1000 lb GP mk 1 392 37 100 25m 160mm 100 120m 15mm
453 kg 1000 lb MC mk 1 392 37 100 25m 160mm 100 120m 15mm
113.4 kg 250 lb 267 0 5.4 13m 78mm 100.6 48m 12mm
113.4 kg 250 lb 43 267 0 5.4 13m 78mm 100.6 48m 12mm
113.4 kg 250 lb late 267 0 5.4 13m 78mm 100.6 48m 12mm
226.8 kg 500 lb 285 16.9 15.7 16m 100mm 111 80m 12mm
226.8 kg 500 lb 43 285 16.9 15.7 16m 100mm 111 80m 12mm
1,815 kg mk 2 Cookie 450 100 4955.1 80m 400mm 87.6 200m 15mm
Nation-us.png
USA
453.6 kg 1000lb AN-M65 cone 392 37 100 25m 160mm 100 120m 15mm
453.6 kg 1000 lb AN-M65A1 392 37 100 25m 160mm 100 120m 15mm
45.4 kg 100 lb AN-M30A1 152 4.3 1 8m 50mm 51.3 40m 10mm
907.2 kg 2000 lb AN-M66A2 450 49.6 640.9 40m 250mm 94.4 150m 15mm
113.4 kg 250 lb AN-M57 267 9.3 4.1 12m 75mm 102.3 45m 12mm
226.8 kg 500 lb AN-M64A1 285 16.9 15.7 16m 100mm 111 80m 12mm
Nation-fr.png
France
kg 100 kg No. 1 m mm m mm
kg 200 kg No. 1 m mm m mm
kg 500 kg No. 2 m mm m mm

Rockets

Rockets

Rockets

Aircraft Rockets

Nation Mass Name Velocity Caliber Drag   Damage  
  Rating  
  Radius     Pen     Damage  
  Rating  
  Radius     Pen  
Rocket properties High explosive Fragmentation
Nation-de.png
Germany
110.9 kg BR 20 350 m/s 210 100 210.8 5 m 75 mm 100 50 m 10 mm
3.85 kg R4M Orkan 525 m/s 55 0 0.6 1 m 12 mm 5.2 25 m 8 mm
2.78 kg RZ 65 Föhn 260 m/s 73 17.5 0 0.9 m 10 mm 13.1 15 m 8 mm
Nation-jp.png
Japan
60 kg 60 kg 340 m/s 82 21.1 99.9 6 m 60 mm 0 15 m 8 mm
Nation-su.png
USSR
41.9 kg RS-132 350 m/s 132 14 27.9 3 m 75 mm 43.3 25 m 10 mm
7.84 kg RS-82 340 m/s 82 0 0.6 1 m 23 mm 16.9 12 m 8 mm
Nation-gb.png
Britain
64 kg HVAR 420 m/s 127 14 29.3 3.5 m 75 mm 98.6 17 m 12 mm
43 kg RP-3 350 m/s 76 10.5 35.8 3.5m 75 mm 56.7 15 m 5 mm
Nation-us.png
USA
583 kg 11.75 in Tiny Tim 300 m/s 298 17.5 1,289.2 13 m 120 mm 183.4 45 m 12 mm
64 kg 5 in HVAR 420 m/s 127 14 29.3 3.5 m 75 mm 98.6 17 m 12 mm
17 kg M8 Bazooka 250 m/s 114 3.5 6 1 m 29 mm 16.8 25 m 7 mm

Attacking a Ground Target

Attacking a ground target is an attack with three parts:

  1. Setting up for the attack
  2. Committing to the attack
  3. Recovering from the attack and setting up for a new attack

Setting up for an attack

This is the most important part to ensuring that parts two and three go smoothly, setting up for the attack is all about patience and preparation, although it will take place in the course of about 30 seconds to 1 minute, although times can vary. there are four steps to setting up for an attack.

  1. Acquiring a target
  2. Checking plane status
  3. Finding an angle of attack
  4. Committing to step 2

Acquiring a target

In ground realistic battles, ground attack is usually the first role that is taken by aircraft. This means that you will have Allies on the ground, it is important to communicate with your team. Asking for them to mark targets on the map is a must so you should be sure you are playing on the server('s) that speak your language. If you need help with what to say, or forgot to have your server set to a server that speaks your language, I have put some phrases (in Russian, English, and Spanish,) Below.

English "Can everyone mark targets?" "Ground attack aircraft looking for targets, can you mark a few?"

Spanish "¿Pueden los tanques marcar objetivos? en aviones de ataque terrestre y en busca de algunos." "¿Todos pueden marcar sus objetivos?"

Russian "Мне нужны цели, могут ли танки?" "В поисках целей нужно, чтобы кто-то отметил один"

Checking Plane Status

This is a relatively short step but an important one it should only be one question: "Is my plane in good enough shape to effectively destroy a target and return to base without major damage, and if so, will that damage impede my return to base?" if you answer yes to the first bit of the question and/or no to the second question go ahead on to step three, if not, return to base and land. If your plane is too badly damaged or out of fuel to get back to base before moving on to step three, you may go for the kill, as there wouldn't be a situation where you could gain more kills afterwards.

Finding an angle of attack