The Shahak was the name given by the IAF personal to the French Mirage IIICJ in service. It was Israel first Mach 2 capable fighter and it was it's main air superiority fighter for many years. It participated in the Six Days War and Yom Kippur War, as well as several border conflicts and skirmishes with Egyptian and Syrian forces, it's main enemy was the Soviet made Mig-21 interceptor. For it's pilots the new missiles carried by the Shahak proved to be too unreliable and most pilots would rather use the DEFA cannons equipped in the aircraft. Israel operated a total of 72 Mirage III fighters that were faced out soon after the Yom Kippur War in favour of more modern IAI Kafir and F-4 Phantom IIs
It was introduced in Update "Winged Lions". The Shahak is very similar in gameplay and BR to the French Mirage IIIC, at least in terms of flight performance. The Shahak however uses a very different missile loadout, using American made AIM-9Ds instead of the short range Matra Magic 1s used in the French variant. The Shahak is fast and very agile, like most delta wing fighters, however it's design makes it so that it has very good agility and AOA but it losses energy very quickly in any kind of manoeuvre. And because it's acceleration is not the best at low speeds it is necessary to stay fast in order to survive, this is even more evident once you realize the Shahak has no countermeasures and staying fast is it's best asset to avoid being hit with a missile
|Characteristics|| Max Speed
(km/h at 12,000 m)
| Max altitude
| Turn time
| Rate of climb
| Take-off run|
|Combat flaps||Take-off flaps||Landing flaps||Air brakes||Arrestor gear||Drogue chute|
|Wings (km/h)||Gear (km/h)||Flaps (km/h)||Max Static G|
|Optimal velocities (km/h)|
|< 920||< 750||< 650||-|
|Engine name||Number||Wing loading (full fuel)|
|SNECMA Atar 9B||1||6,340 kg||258 kg/m2|
|Engine characteristics||Mass with fuel (no weapons load)|| Max Takeoff|
|Weight (each)||Type||8m fuel||20m fuel||28m fuel|
|1,333 kg||Afterburning axial-flow turbojet||6,900 kg||7,673 kg||8,206 kg||10,950 kg|
|Thrust to weight ratio @ 0 m (WEP)|
|Condition||100%||WEP||8m fuel||20m fuel||28m fuel||MTOW|
|Stationary||4,230 kgf||6,090 kgf||0.88||0.79||0.74||0.56|
|Optimal|| 5,118 kgf
(1,200 - 1,400 km/h)
| 8,253 kgf
Survivability and armour
Due to the size of the Shahak, its survivability is rather low. The large engine that covers almost half the length of your fuselage is very vulnerable to enemy fire. Any damage which will significantly decrease your power output and the massive wings will lose a large amount of lift when damaged.
The plane includes an RWR (radar warning receiver), which can be rather helpful.
Modifications and economy
The Shahak is armed with:
- 2 x 30 mm DEFA 552A cannons, belly-mounted (125 rpg = 250 total)
The Shahak can be outfitted with the following ordnance:
|250 kg SAMP Type 25 bombs||2|
|250 kg SAMP Type 25 200 bombs||2|
|400 kg SAMP Type 21 bombs||2|
|400 kg SAMP Type 21 200 bombs||2|
|AIM-9D Sidewinder missiles||1||1|
|Matra R530 missiles||1|
|Matra R530E missiles||1|
|Shafrir 2 missiles||1||1|
|Default weapon presets|
Usage in battles
In Air RB, it is recommended to climb and use your decent radar and Matra R530 SARH missiles against unsuspecting aircraft (such as Harriers, A-5C, F-5C, MiG-21S and more). The R530 missile has pretty good range and can hit opponents coming head-on even when launched from the maximum range (~12 km or 7.5 mi at ~5 km or ~3 mi altitude or more) while also being agile enough to hit targets that try to manoeuvre at higher altitudes.
The aircraft also comes with the Matra R530E which is the infrared variant of the R530. It can be used at medium range at high altitude (preferable side-on) but it will be a missile that you rarely use since you have access to two AIM-9D missiles that are superior to the 530E. The R530E could then be traded for bombs or the regular R530 which also has all-aspect capabilities.
There is also the Shafrir 2 IR missile which has great manoeuvrability, as well as a long motor burn time. However, the missile has a relatively short range, and can have difficulty hitting targets going the same speed as you at low altitude. the uncaged seeker helps this missile alot with turning targets by allowing you to lead the missile.
The AIM-9D is one of the longest-range missiles of the AIM-9 family, featuring a motor and aerodynamics almost identical to the AIM-9G/9H with an inferior seeker head and gimbal limits. It can effectively destroy aircraft 5-6 km rear aspect at ~5 km, ~3 mi altitude or more with the only drawback being that it is angled downwards with a caged seeker before launch making it slightly harder to use.
The aircraft itself features a powerful engine and a delta wing configuration which allow it to accelerate at a decent rate and have great maneuverability but the control surfaces become less responsive at higher altitudes.
In summary, a valid tactic is to start climbing at 20-25 degrees once you take off until you reach an altitude where your missiles can use their full range at the start of the battle, use your radar to lock on an enemy and fire your R530 missiles hopefully scoring a kill while avoiding sharp turns and doing your best to keep your speed high. Having high speed not only makes it harder for enemies to catch up to you or use their missiles to hit you, it also makes your missiles have an even longer range. Once you see that there are no more enemies at your altitude, there are most likely either a few running people on the enemy team left or there is a furball. In both cases you have the ability to sneak up on the enemy from your higher altitude and fire your missiles off scoring even more kills. One thing to keep in mind though is that the AIM-9D pulls too much lead when fired off from side-aspect so it will be easier to dodge.
Pros and cons
- Greatly manoeuvrable
- Good air-to-air missiles
- 30 mm DEFA cannons are deadly at close ranges
- Bleeds speed fairly quickly in sharp turns
- No countermeasures (no flares or chaff)
- Low ammo pool for the cannons
Shahak was the name given by the Israelis to their operated Dassault Mirage IIICJ. Israel placed an order for several aircrafts in 1959 to combat the new Mig-21 Mach 2 fighters fitted by many Arab nations. The Mirage fighters given to Israel had a couple of modifications, the Mirage was intended to be a high altitude bomber interceptor but Israel needed a fighter jet capable of air superiority missions.
Therefore Israeli Mirages included extra fuel tanks instead of takeoff rockets and two DEFA cannons not present in the original French Mirages. The first Mirage fighters arrived to Israel in 1962 and were subsequently given to the 101 "First Fighter" Squadron. 24 fighters were initially ordered but that purchase was increased to 72 in 1961. Later in 1962 the 117th squadron started to operate the Mirage, and finally the 119th Squadron was the last receiver of the new purchase.
Israel operated mainly the Mirage IIIC, but it also operated the Mirage IIIB two seat variant that lacked the interception radar. The Shahak was called that way because of it's new armament, but the new air to air missiles like the Shafrir 2 and Matra 530 proved too unreliable and pilots usually just used the DEFA cannons for air to air combat. During the early 1960s the Shahak was involved in fights in Syria with Mig-17s and Mig-21s were the missiles used by both sides proved unsatisfactory, however two Mig-21s were shot down with cannon shots.
The Shahak was present in several more conflicts, it saw extensive use in the Six Days War were it was Israel main air superiority fighter. After that it participated in several skirmishes with Egyptian and Syrian Mig-21s over border disputes, however it also saw combat against Soviet pilots flying over the Sinai Peninsula. During the Yom Kippur War the Shahak was down to less than 40 examples and saw most of it's use in patrols and flying reconnaissance. Since the IAF had more modern and capable F-4 Phantoms and IAI Nesher fighters in service. It still was used with success against Egyptian strike aircrafts and Syrian Mig-21s in several situations.
The Shahak was quickly faced out in favour of more capable fighters after the Yom Kippur War and it's number just kept decreasing. More capable and modern versions of the American F-4 Phantom II and the IAI Kafir made the Shahak obsolete.
- Related development
Paste links to sources and external resources, such as:
- topic on the official game forum;
- other literature.
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|Mystère||M.D.452 IIA · M.D.452 IIC · Mystere IVA|
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