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  Dassault Rafale M
  by Bruno Mérelle

  (Previewed July 2010)

I've recently had the opportunity to preview the Rafale M being developed by Bruno Mérelle (alias "Thor's Hammer" in the forums).  When asked why he selected the Rafale Bruno replied, "I guess it is just the harmonious shape of the plane, and not because it's French.  I could have perfectly chosen the Spifire, one of my other favorite planes."  [I have to agree -- the Rafale is a beautifully sculpted airplane. ~ FS] (Updates will follow as they become available.)
But Bruno's interest in the subject goes back to at least 2001 when he started working on a Rafale made by another developer for a modification of the Battlefield 1942 game.  "While the results were quite good (image at right) for Battlefield they were below FS standards."  Shortly after FSX was released Bruno began work on an improved version.  

  According to Bruno the model has been redone several times since then with very little remaining from the original.  In addition to the exterior model Bruno is also developing the instrument panel, VC, and 3D gauges.

Four external models will be used depending on the fuel tank configuration: no external tanks (title image), a single 1275 litre tank (right), three 1275 litre tanks, two 2000 litre tanks (below), and three 2000 litre tanks (above).  When you change weights under payload the external loads will appear and disappear.    

  "I chose to separate the folders following the external tanks scheme.  I made this decision to be able to have a different flight models following aerodynamics and limitations controlled by flight avionic when carrying heavy stuff."  For the flight model, "I hope to be assisted by Bee Gee, our most talented French flight model maker."

Work in Progress video (October 2010) at YouTube.
And another video (June 2011) with a teaser at the end.

This preview page was originally presented in July 2010.  Work has continued as evidenced from the video's above.  Here are a couple new of images from September 2011.  With the outbreak of war in Libya this year, and air support provided to rebel forces by NATO, the Rafale has been in the news and videos quite often.  

  Although the VC is not completed yet this Rafale M for FSX is scheduled for public release at the "6ième Mondial de la Simulation" event the weekend of September 30 at the "Musée de l 'Air et de l'Espace", Le Bourget.  (Image via FAF)

All images by Bruno Merelle and FAF.
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