F-22 Raptor Thread

Discussion in 'World Armed Forces' started by Jeff Head, Sep 4, 2013.

  1. Jeff Head
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    United States Air Force F-22 Raptor


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    Initial Development
    The United States Air Force's F-22 Raptor is the only mass produced and deployed 5th generation fighter operating in the world. Two other nations, Russia (PAK-FA) and China (J-20), are now developing 5th generation fighter aircraft, but both are still in the pototyp phase of development and several years away from initial production. It is anticpated that these aircraft may reach operational status by the 2020 time frame, a full fifteen years after the F-22 became operational in 2005.

    The F-22 is a single seat, twin-engine, all-weather, air superiority, super-cruise capable, stealth fighter. It dfoes however have additional capabilities including ground attack, electronic warfare, and signals intelligence roles. Due toi the number of aircraft produced, it primary function will remain air superiority.

    The F-22 was developed as a resutl of the Advanced Tactical Fighter request fpor proposal that was generated by the US Air Force in the mid 1980s. In 1986, Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman were selected as the two firms to provid prototype aircraft withuin sixty months for a fly-off the competition. The Lockheed Martin team produced the YF-22 and the Nrothrop Grumman team produced the YF-23. Two of each aircraft were built.


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    Lockheeed Martin YF-22 Prototype Aircraft

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    Northrop Gruman YF-23 Prototype Aircraft

    Production Development
    On April 23, 1991, after a 90-day flight test validation of the prototypes of each aircraft, Secretary of the U.S. Air Force Donald Rice announced the YF-22 had won the ATF competition The YF-23 design was more stealthy and faster, but the YF-22 was more agile. At that time, in 1991, the USAF still planned to buy a total off 650 aircraft (dwon from 750 in the late 1980s) and Lockheed Martin's cost structure and pofit loss margins were calculated accordingly given the massive amount of technology still required to be developed for the aircraft, and proceeded accordingly. The contract called for another five to six years to delop the first full production aircraft.

    On April 9, 1997, the first production F-22 was rolled out at Lockheed's Georgia Plant in Marietta, Georgia. It flew for the first time on September 7, 1997. A long development and testing cycle insued. After fulfilling all test requiirements and going through the upgrade porcesses neceessary to ensure it, the first F-22 was delivered to the US Air Force at Nellis AFB, Nevada on January 7, 2003. .The F-22 Raptor reached operational status in 2005. At that time, the US Air Force had reduced its total requirement to the 381 aircraft, to be divided among seven active duty combat squadrons and three integrated Air Force Reserve Command and Air National Guard squadrons. This reduction seriously impacted the cost of the aircraft, all development costs and profit margin now having to be spread out among 381 aircraft instead of the intial 650.


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    1st Production F-22 1st Flight, September 7, 1997

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    1st Production F-22 1st Flight, w/Chase Plane

    The production aircraft, through the process of development and refinemnt had undergons several changes over the YF-22 prototype. Among these were the following.

    - The swept-back angle on the wing's leading edge was decreased from 48° to 42°
    - The vertical stabilizer area was decreased by 20%.
    - The canopy was moved forward 7 in and the engine intakes were movedbak14 in toimprove pilot visibility.
    - The shape of the wing and stabilator trailing edges were refined to improve aerodynamics, strength, and stealth.
    - The vertical stabilizer was shifted rearward

    History, Costs, Production
    In the 2006-2007 period a further reduction of aircraft was settled on and announced, now reducing the total number of aircraft to 183. This had more serious impact on the cost of the aircraft. At the time, the Unit Procurement costs were estimated to be $177 million per aircraft. but, a total of $66 billion dollars was estimated to have to be spent in total (including all of the R&D costs) which meant that each aircraft cost in excess of $300 million in reality.

    Also in 2006, the US Congress propposed and approved a ban on all exports of the F-22. It's extremly advanced stealkth technology, electronics, and avionics were deemed just too advanced to risk the chance of falling into the hands of nations that might oppose the United States.

    Despite this, Japan, Australia, and others allied nations have sought an opportunity to purchase some of the aircraft. In 2010 the defense authorization bill included a provision that required the DoD to prepare a report on the costs and feasibility for an F-22 export variant and another report on the impact of F-22 export sales on the U.S. aerospace industry. To date, nothing has come of this potential for export F-22s.

    The aforementioned Russian and Chinese fighter development have fueled concern; General John Corley, head of Air Combat Command, indicated in a 2009 letter thge senate that the fleet of 187 F-22s would put execution of the national military strategy at high risk in the mid-term. Proposals to consider funding more F-22s continue to appear to this day. despite this, in December 2011, the 195th and final F-22 was completed (8 test and 187 combat aircraft).


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    Last Production F-22 rolls off the line, December 13, 2011

    Because of the limited production run, there are zero attrition reserve aircraft and extra care is given at the Hill Air Force Base F-22 maintenance center to keep the entire fleet operational. Lockheed has retained all tooling so that additional parts, and if needed, aircraft, can be built. Lockheed estimated in 2011 that the opening of the production line to produce an additional 75 aircraft would cost about $165 billion dollars.

    Overall Design Characteristics
    The F-22 Raptor uses dual afterburning Pratt & Whitney F119-PW-100 turbofans which incorporate pitch axis thrust vectoring in a range of ±20 degrees. The maximum thrust is classified, but analysts place it at 35,000 lbf (156 kN) per engine. Maximum supercruise speed, without external weapons, is estimated to be Mach 1.82 and this was demonstrated when General John P. Jumper exceeded Mach 1.7 without afterburners on 13 January 2005. With afterburners, the aircraft is capable of speeds in excess of Mach 2.

    The Raptor has a fixed inlet, as opposed to variable intake ramps and the aircraft has a greater climb rate than the F-15, despite the F-15's higher thrust-to-weight ratio. The U.S. Air Force and Lockheed claim that the Raptor cannot be matched by any known or projected fighter types and that the F-22 is the only aircraft that blends supercruise speed, super-agility, stealth and sensor fusion into a single air dominance platform.

    Since the ability of airframes to withstand both stress and heat is a critical design factor, the F-22 uses various materials and design characteristics to address it. The use of internal weapons bays allows the aircraft to maintain a comparatively higher performance while carrying a heavy payload. As stated, itcan supercruise and sustain supersonic flight without the use of afterburners, which consume vastly more fuel.

    The F-22 is highly maneuverable, at both supersonic and subsonic speeds. It is extremely departure-resistant, enabling it to remain controllable at extreme positioning of the aircraft in flight. The Raptor's thrust vectoring nozzles allow the aircraft to turn tightly, and perform extremely high alpha (angle of attack) maneuvers such as the Herbst maneuver (or J-turn), Pugachev's Cobra, and the Kulbit. The F-22 is also capable of maintaining a constant angle of attack of over 60°, yet still having control of roll. ] During June 2006 exercises in Alaska, F-22 demonstrated that cruise altitude has a significant positive effect on combat performance. This altitide altitude advantage is routinely credited as a major factor in achieving a very high ratio against other U.S. fighters and 4th/4.5th generation fighters from allied nations.


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    F-22 Raptor in high G turn

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    F-22 Raptor in high angle take-off

    All in all, F-22 design combines a unique combination of speed, altitude, agility, sensor fusion and stealth that all work together to increase its effectiveness. It's altitude advantage combines with its very advanced active and passive electronic warfare systems to enable the F-22 to identify and target threats for its own weapons to engage at very long ranges. That same altitude and its supercruise capability helps increase the reach of the F-22's weapons. it also increases the range the aircraft can maintain from from ground based defenses, which further enhances its stealth characteristcs and reduces the time defensive systems have to react to the F-22.

    Avionics
    The F-22's avionics include BAE Systems E&IS radar warning receiver (RWR) AN/ALR-94, the AN/AAR 56 Infra-Red and Ultra-Violet MAWS (Missile Approach Warning System) and the Northrop Grumman AN/APG-77 Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar. The AN/ALR-94 is a passive receiver system used to detect radar signals. It is composed of more than 30 antennas blended into the wings and fuselage that provide 360 degress of coverage. It has been described as the most technically complex piece of equipment on the aircraft. It has a greater range (250+ nmi) than the aircraft's own radar, allowing the F-22 to limit its own radar emissions and therefore further maiximize its own stealth characteristics. As a target approaches, the receiver can cue the AN/APG-77 radar to track the target with a narrow beam, which can be as focused down to 2° by 2° in azimuth and elevation.

    The AN/APG-77 radar itself is designed for air superiority and strike operations.It features a low-observable, active-aperture, electronically-scanned array that can track multiple targets in any weather. The AN/APG-77 changes frequencies more than 1,000 times per second. This significantly lowers the chance of intercepting and jamming the radar. Additionally, radar emissions can be highly focused and used in an offensive electronic warfare attack mode to overload and defeat and enemy's sensors.

    The radar's information is processed by two Raytheon Common Integrated Processor (CIP)s. Each CIP can process 10.5 billion instructions per second and has 300 megabytes of memory. Information can be gathered from the radar and other onboard and offboard systems, filtered by the CIP, and offered in intuitive, easy to understand screens on the cockpit displays. This decreases any data, or information overload to the pilot and allows the pilot to abreast of complicated situations. The F-22's avionics software has over1.7 million lines of code, the majority involving processing data from the radar. The radar has an estimated range of 150+ miles, though planned upgrades will increase this to over 250 miles. Bu using a narrow beam where possible, this range can be increased considerably.

    In 2007, tests by Northrop Grumman, Lockheed Martin, and L-3 Communications enabled the AESA system of a Raptor to act like a WiFi access point, and allowed it to transmit data at 548 megabits per second and receive data at gigabit speed. This is far faster than the Link 16 system used by U.S. and allied aircraft, which transfers data at just over 1 megabits per second. The possibilites for linking F-22s and other aircraft and command positions is significant.

    Each F-22 alone has the threat detection and identification capability that is comparable to a RC-135 Rivet Joint Electronic Warfare aircraft. The Raptor's stealth allows it to safely operate much closer to the battlefield and take high advantage of this capanbility. With all of its electonic warfare, radar, and passive systems, an F-22 is capable of functioning as a "mini-AWACS" in tactical situations as required. As a result, the F-22 can designate targets for F-15s and F-16s, and determine whether two friendly aircraft are targeting the same aircraft and avoid excessive or redundant use of ordinance. This improves the overall effectiveness of a air groups weapons systems. This capability, operating right at the battle frot is often able to identify targets much quicker than a traditional AWACS environement where the AWACS aircraft may be 200 or more miles away from the engagement. The F-22's radar, as mentioned, is also capable of high-bandwidth data transmission. As a result, conventional radio communications (and detection) can be reduced by using these alternative means. These communication and fast link capabilities are a critical force multiplier. for example, it is possible for an F-22 to datalink with individual Tomahawk (missile) in their attack profiles

    Finally, the IEEE-1394B data bus developed for the F-22 was derived from the commercial COTS IEEE-1394 "FireWire" bus system. Sensor fusion combines data from numerous onboard and offboard sensors into a common display that further prevents the pilot from suffering from data and information overload.

    Stealth
    The extremely capable stealth charecteristics of the F-22 are the sum of a combination of several factors. These includie all of the following:

    - The overall shape of the aircraft.
    - The use of radar absorbent material (RAM).
    - The attention to detail such as hinges and pilot helmets that could provide a radar return.
    - Disguising infrared emissions by using flat thrust vectoring nozzles. a covering for the 20mm cannon when not in use
    - Using special paint and active cooling on leading edges to diffuse heat buildup during supercruise flight.
    - Controlling all radio, radar, and electroni emmissions as stated.

    The F-22 relies less on maintenance-intensive radar absorbent coatings than previous stealth designs like the F-117. These materials are susceptible to adverse weather conditions and degrade with use. Unlike the B-2, which requires climate-controlled hangars, the F-22 can undergo repairs on the flight line or in a normal hangar. In addition, the F-22 features a Signature Assessment System which monitors the various stealth characteristics of the aircraft and communicates any degradation as various levesl of warnings to the pilot if the radar signature increases.

    The exact radar cross section (RCS) of the F-22 remains classified; however, in 2009 Lockheed Martin released information indicating that the RCS was a ?40 dBsm. This has been calculated to be the equivalent radar reflection of a steel marble.

    Overall effectiveness of stealth characteristics is sometimes difficult to gauge. An RCS value is usually a measurement of the aircraft's frontal or side area from the perspective of a static, ground radar. But, when an aircraft maneuvers in combat, it exposes a completely different set of angles and surface areas, potentially increasing its visibility and decreasing its stealth. Characteristics like contouring and radar absorbent materials can be muich more effective against high-frequency radars, usually found on other aircraft. Low-frequency radars, employed by weather radars and ground warning stations, may be less affected by these characteristics may be more capable at detecting such aircraft. But, procuing faint or fleeting radar contacts do not necessarily translate in an ability to counter the aircraft itself. Inb order to effectively vector defenses like other aircraft and missiles to counter an aicraft like the F-22, a much more solid lock must be obtained, and the F-22's design has taken all of these issues inot serious consideration. From the angles of the intakes, the molding of the nose, the joints at the landing gear and weapons bay doors, the configuration, positioning, and shape of the engines echausts, etc., the F-22 is designed to combat all known mnethods of detecting stealth and to counter them..

    Armament
    The F-22 includes three internal weapons bays. Thereis a large bays on the bottom of the fuselage. There are also two smaller bays on the sides of the fuselage, aft of the engine intakes. In the large bay, the F-22 can carry a combination of weapons. These include:

    - Up to six medium to long range AMRAAM (AIM-120C/D) missiles.
    - Two bomb racks in place of four of the AMRAAM missiles for one medium-sized (1,00 lb) JDAM weapon or four small diameter bombs (250 lbs) for each rack.

    The side weapons bays can carry one Sidewindewr (AMI-9) missile each.


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    F-22 Raptor Weapon Bays

    Carrying missiles and bombs internally maintains the stealth capability of the aircraft, and decreases drag that would result if the weapons were carried extremally. This allows for the aircaft to maintian higher speeds and have longer ranges as a s result of less fuel consumption. When launching the weapons from the bays, the doors are open for for less than a second each, which gives the system time to push the weapon cleear clear of the airframe by hydraulic arms. This reduces the Raptor's chance of detection by enemy radar systems due to launched ordnance and also allows the F-22 to launch long range missiles while maintaining supercruise.

    Air-to-surface ordnance for the Raptor is limited to 2,000 lb, and would only be used on very high value targets requiring the extereme stealth characteristics of the Raptor. Given the need for the Raptor in the air superiority role where its stealth, supercruis, air to air weapons, and altitude can be maximized, it is expected that such air to ground missions for the Raptor will be rare.

    The F-22 also an M61A2 Vulcan 20 mm cannon in the right wing root. This weapon carries 480 rounds, which is enough ammunition for five seconds of sustained fire. In dog fight exercises, the F-22 has been able to close to gun rangewhile avoiding detection. The cannon fire is tracked by the aircraft's radar and displayed on the pilot's head up display.[195]

    The Raptor's very high sustained cruise speed and operational altitude add significantly to the effective range of both air-to-air and air-to-surface munitions. This gives it a 40% greater employment range for air to air missiles than many other aircraft. The USAF plans to procure the AIM-120D AMRAAM, which will have a 50% increase in range over the current AIM-120C missiles. While specific figures remain classified, it is expected that JDAMs employed by F-22s will have twice or more the effective range of munitions dropped by legacy platforms.[197] In testing, a Raptor dropped a 1,000 lb (450 kg) unpowered, free-fall JDAM from 50,000 feet (15,000 m), while cruising at Mach 1.5, striking a moving target 24 miles (39 km) away.[198] This reach advantage of the F-22 has been cited by Robert Gottliebsen as sufficient reason for Australia to reject the F-35 in favor of a F-22 that has been updated with F-35 systems.[199]

    While the F-22 will almost always carry its weapons internally, the wings do include four hardpoints, each of which can carry up to 5,000 lb of ordinance. Each hardpoint has a pylon that can carry a detachable 600 gallon fuel tank or a launcher holding two air-air missiles. However, the use of external stores has a detrimental effect on the F-22's stealth, maneuverability and speed. The two inner hardpoints are "plumbed" for external fuel tanks; the hardpoints can be jettisoned in flight so the fighter can maximize its stealth after exhausting external stores.[200] A stealth ordnance pod and pylon is being developed to carry additional weapons internally.

    Specifications

    Crew: 1
    Length: 62 ft 1 in
    Wingspan: 44 ft 6 in
    Height: 16 ft 8 in
    Empty weight: 43,340 lb
    Loaded weight: 64,460 lb
    Max. takeoff weight: 83,500 lb
    Powerplant: 2 × Pratt & Whitney F119-PW-100 Thrust vectoring turbofans
    Dry thrust: 23,500 lb each
    Thrust with afterburner: 35,000+ lb each
    Fuel capacity: 18,000 lb internally, or 26,000 lb with two external fuel tanks
    Maximum speed:
    - At altitude: Mach 2.25 (1,500 mph, 2,410 km/h)
    - Supercruise: Mach 1.82 (1,220 mph, 1,963 km/h)[150]
    Range: 1,840 miles with 2 external fuel tanks
    Combat radius: 471 miles with 100 miles in Supercruise
    Ferry range: 2,000 miles
    Service ceiling: 65,000 feet
    Thrust/weight: 1.26 with loaded weight & 50% fuel
    Armament:
    - Guns: 1× 20 mm M61A2 6-barreled gatling cannon, 480 rounds
    - Air to air loadout:
    --- 6× AIM-120 AMRAAM
    --- 2× AIM-9 Sidewinder
    - Air to ground loadout:
    --- 2× AIM-120 AMRAAM and
    --- 2× AIM-9 Sidewinder for self-protection, and one of the following:
    --- 2× 1,000 lb (450 kg) JDAM or
    --- 8× 250 lb (110 kg) GBU-39 Small Diameter Bombs
    Hardpoints: 4 pylon stations per wing for 600 gallon drop tanks or weapons 5,000 lb each

    F-22 Raptor Pictures


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    A flight of ten F-22 Raptors

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    Four F-22 Raptors on Patrol

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    Five F-22 Raptors on the Tarmac

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    Two F-22 Raptors escort a B-2 Stealth Bomber

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    Two F-22 Raptors aerial refueled

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    An F-22 Raptor breaks the sound barrier while climbing high
     
    #1 Jeff Head, Sep 4, 2013
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 6, 2013
  2. Jeff Head
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    Jeff Head General
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    Re: USAF F-22 Raprot (With PAK-FA Comparison)

    Russian PAK-FA and US Air Force F-22
    The Russians have been anxious to develop a fighter that could compete with the US Air Force F-22. To this end they have created a prototype aircraft and now built five of them for the Sukhoi PAK-FA fighter. The prototype is called the T-50.

    This is a very aerodynamic and agile aircraft, with numerous stealth features. However, it is not yet equipped with the types of engines the Russians desire for the aircraft with the type of supercruise and stealthy exhausts that they desire. Those are supposed to be introduced during production.

    Though the Russians indicate that initial prooduction aircraft are to become available in the 2015-2016 time frame and be operational in the 2017-2018 time frame, it is more likely that the soonest these aircraft will be operational is 2020, if not later.

    The first flight of the T-50 prototype occured in January of 2010.

    Here are pictures of both aircraft, including a comparison of basic specifications. The reader is asked to examine these aircraft and determine for themselves the differences and relative stealth capanbilities of each.


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    #2 Jeff Head, Sep 4, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2014
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  3. Jeff Head
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    Jeff Head General
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    Re: "US Air Force F-22 Raptor, News, Pictures and Videos"

    Chinese J-20 and US Air Force F-22

    The People's Republic of China has also been anxious to develop a fighter that could compete with the US Air Force F-22. They were not expected to have anything available until the late 20-teens, but then to everyone's surprise, the airfraft maker Chengdu rolled out a Chinese 5th generation stealth fighter, the J-20, and it made its first flight on Januaru 11, 2011. By late 2012 they had completed a second prototype.

    This is an impressive aircraft, with numerous stealth features. However, it is too does not appear to be equipped as yet with the types of engines the Chinese ultimately desire for the aircraft and with the stealthy exhausts that would be desirable.

    The Chinese inidate that they hope to have production aircraft flying by 2020.

    Here are pictures of both aircraft. Again, we ask the reader to observe and examine these aircraft and determine for themselves the differences and relative stealth capanbilities of each.



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    #3 Jeff Head, Sep 4, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2014
  4. SamuraiBlue
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    SamuraiBlue Senior Member

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    Re: USAF F-22 Raptor (With PAK-FA Comparison)

    Don't forget Japan. The research arm of Ministry of Defense, Technical Research and Development Institute has built a full scale mock up of the ATD-X and have started static stress load test on it.

    1308_5_img1.jpg

    Source here (in Japanese).

    First test flight is scheduled for sometime next year.
     
  5. Air Force Brat
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    Re: USAF F-22 Raptor (With PAK-FA Comparison)

    Welcome aboard Sam, I fully expected to make the 4th post in this lovely thread started by the brilliant Mr Head, and El-Jefe, you have truly outdone yourself with this one, and yes I am in love all over again, by illustrating why the F-22 Raptor is and remains the only TRUE fifth gen aircraft in the world, excluding even the F-35. Like certain ships that reset their class, the Raptor remains at the head of the class by virtue of its many virtues, and the in-ability of any of its near peers to approach the throne....

    Although the Defense Talk boys love to beat on the Raptor, and love up the F-35, by down playing the importance of an individual weapons platform, they are missing the point, the Raptor set the standard with supercruise, super agility, and true stealth, all one need do is run the Mark One Eyeball over these three aircraft, the F-22 is as slick as a bar of soap, only the J-31 appears to integrate this same "design philosophy" into her construction, the F-35 tries, but it is robust bird, likely will fall far short of the Raptor, and has earned her the "ThunderHogge" appellation. I will say that your developing bird appears to mirror the bar of soap, but we shall see when she flys. brat

    Oh and thank you Jeff, I particularly like the inverted photos of the T-50 and F-22, very nice touch doing the mirror montage!
     
  6. Jeff Head
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    Re: USAF F-22 Raptor (With PAK-FA Comparison)

    Thanks, SB, I did not know they were that far along. That's great news.

    Once they get the prototype test flown, I will make a similar post here showing it side by side with the F-22.

    Any idea on when they think it will go into actual production and when they are looking at it being operational?

    How many do they think they will build?
     
  7. Jeff Head
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    Re: USAF F-22 Raptor (With PAK-FA Comparison)

    Those were cool pics, eh? I really liked those too.

    I have to tell you, I still wish the YF-23 had been picked up by the Navy or at least built in some numbers as a dedicated strike bird or something by the Air Force.

    That is one sweet aircraft and I hate to think of only two of them.

    Here's a couple of more I like:


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    Another F-22 maing waves!

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    It will be a long time before any other nation can do this - ten, full service, 5th gen aircraft in formation at once!
     
    #7 Jeff Head, Sep 5, 2013
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2014
  8. SamuraiBlue
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    Re: USAF F-22 Raptor (With PAK-FA Comparison)

    First of all ATD-X is as the name Advanced Technical Demonstrator Experimental hints is going to be using as a test bed for various new technology.
    Having said that Japan does require to replace the aging F-15Js and F-2s sometime around the 2020s and I believe ATD-X is a stepping stone towards that direction. TRDI had floated the i3 Fighter concept a few years ago(2010) which incorporates various new ideas into one package.

    http://www.mod.go.jp/trdi/research/dts2010.files/S3/S3-1.pdf

    Many of it's technology had already been either incorporated into other planes like the fly-by-light technology which is already utilized in the P-1 MPA or tested like the high power slim engine which has already been developed by IHI the XF5-1 engine in which they are trying to power up the thrust scheduled to be completed around 2020s.
    Most interesting part would be "cloud shooting" in which a squadron shares targeting data with one another to prioritize and control one another's weaponry within the swarm. (P10 within the deck)

    In the last page of the deck it shows a road map of development due year of each year showing start of integration of each technology to develop F-2 around 2015 and completing development around 2020~2030.(2013 is 平成 25)
     
  9. FORBIN
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    Re: USAF F-22 Raptor (With PAK-FA Comparison)

    Nice topic !

    The F-22 is the best fighter ever built and superior against T-50 especially because he had the best RCS, infrared-emissions, nozzles well hidden.

    A quick ranking for the RCS : F-22, F-35 and T-50, J-20.

    YF-23 have the best rcs ever see.
     
  10. perfume
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    Re: USAF F-22 Raptor (With PAK-FA Comparison)

    Wow wow wow hang on there. T-50 above J-20? You're just asking for it there bringing all this 'which is best' topic in here.

    T-50 with a better RCS than J-20? Have you seen the planes?
     
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