Force Comparison

Aerial Warfare Assets

Compare the fixed wing combat aircraft in service with world's aerial powers. Quantities and technology are hardly the only factors that determine the outcome of a conflict or the potency of an air force, but an analysis of the assets available can be used to indicate which countries are most capable both of claiming air superiority and of striking and neutralising enemy targets from the air. An analysis of each country's anti aircraft capable surface to air missile systems is also provided, and is critical to evaluating its potential to deny enemy forces access to its airspace. Capable air defences are an invaluable asset which often determine the course of an air campaign.
Capabilities By Country
Compare Countries
Air Superiority
Specialised heavy platforms with airframes built for and dedicated to air to air combat.High end and costly aircraft only ever produced by Russia, the United States and China.
Multirole
Unspecialised lighter platforms with lower acquisition and operational costs. Capable of fulfilling air to ground and air to air roles.
Legacy
Older jet fighters preceding the Fourth Generation. Many of these platforms have been extensively modernised and can be formidable in combat.
Strike
Heavy fighters specialised in an air to ground role, while retaining limited air to air combat capabilities. Capable of carrying bombs and missiles which are used to strike targets from high altitudes.
Attack
Light or Medium weight fighters designed to operate from low altitudes agains enemy ground forces. Very often well armoured, and making heavy use of weapons such as short range anti tank missiles and rotary cannons. Rarely possess air to air combat capabilities.
Bomber
The largest, heaviest and longest ranged combat aircraft in service. Traditionally designed to deliver nuclear and conventional payloads to far off enemy targets - often on other continents, modern bombers have often been equipped with long range cruise missiles to reduce vulnerability to enemy air defences. One of the three traditional pillars of a nuclear delivery forces, in service today only in the United States, China, Russia and North Korea.
Total Fixed Wing Combat Aircraft
AWACS
Airborne radar picket systems able to detect hostile targets at extreme ranges. Highly effective as a force multiplier in aerial engagements able to perform command and control of aerial assets and directing strikes by combat aircraft.
Defensive Anti Aircraft Missile Strength
Rated from 1-10. Rating takes into account training of anti aircraft crews, SAM systems available and their proven effectiveness in testing and combat, modernisations and modifications made to older systems, fortifications used to protect SAM systems and the range and concentration of anti aircraft capable SAMs relative to the size of the territory being defended.
Air superiority
FIFTH GENERATION
FORTH GENERATION
Interceptor
MultiRole
FIFTH GENERATION
FORTH GENERATION
legacy
AIR TO GROUND
ATTACK
strike
bomber
CARRIER BASED
5TH GEN. CARRIER BASED MULTIROLE
4TH GEN. CARRIER BASED MULTIROLE
CARRIER BASED AIR SUPERIORITY
CARRIER BASED ATTACK
ANTI AIRCRAFT MISSILE SYSTEM
long Range
medium Range
short Range
Force Comparison
Air Superiority
Specialised heavy platforms with airframes built for and dedicated to air to air combat.High end and costly aircraft only ever produced by Russia, the United States and China.
Multirole
Unspecialised lighter platforms with lower acquisition and operational costs. Capable of fulfilling air to ground and air to air roles.
Legacy
Older jet fighters preceding the Fourth Generation. Many of these platforms have been extensively modernised and can be formidable in combat.
Strike
Heavy fighters specialised in an air to ground role, while retaining limited air to air combat capabilities. Capable of carrying bombs and missiles which are used to strike targets from high altitudes.
Attack
Light or Medium weight fighters designed to operate from low altitudes agains enemy ground forces. Very often well armoured, and making heavy use of weapons such as short range anti tank missiles and rotary cannons. Rarely possess air to air combat capabilities.
Bomber
The largest, heaviest and longest ranged combat aircraft in service. Traditionally designed to deliver nuclear and conventional payloads to far off enemy targets - often on other continents, modern bombers have often been equipped with long range cruise missiles to reduce vulnerability to enemy air defences. One of the three traditional pillars of a nuclear delivery forces, in service today only in the United States, China, Russia and North Korea.
Total Fixed Wing Combat Aircraft
AWACS
Airborne radar picket systems able to detect hostile targets at extreme ranges. Highly effective as a force multiplier in aerial engagements able to perform command and control of aerial assets and directing strikes by combat aircraft.
Defensive Anti Aircraft Missile Strength
Rated from 1-10. Rating takes into account training of anti aircraft crews, SAM systems available and their proven effectiveness in testing and combat, modernisations and modifications made to older systems, fortifications used to protect SAM systems and the range and concentration of anti aircraft capable SAMs relative to the size of the territory being defended.
Air superiority
FIFTH GENERATION
FORTH GENERATION
Interceptor
MultiRole
FIFTH GENERATION
FORTH GENERATION
legacy
AIR TO GROUND
ATTACK
strike
bomber
CARRIER BASED
5TH GEN. CARRIER BASED MULTIROLE
4TH GEN. CARRIER BASED MULTIROLE
CARRIER BASED AIR SUPERIORITY
CARRIER BASED ATTACK
ANTI AIRCRAFT MISSILE SYSTEM
long Range
medium Range
short Range