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kentchang

Junior Member
Registered Member
Why only the A?

The B type has more issues than the A.

C doesn't exist in practice.
The article only talks about the Air Force replacing the F-16. The Navy simply doesn't have the money to seek alternatives for the next 10 years with Columbia eating up the biggest chunk. The -B is as good as current technology allows. -B compromised -A. If -B is kept, -C will too to spread current production and future upgrade costs. If only the -B is kept, the per unit cost will be astronomical thus unthinkable. Good example is the F-22 upgrade program. With such a small fleet, you just cannot afford to do much custom for MLU.

If I am China, I wouldn't bother with a VSTOL jet. I'll put all the resources into UCAV's.
 

Nobonita Barua

Senior Member
Registered Member
Wow... Clear message the Air Force thinks the F-35A is a dud and wants to get out. Now the countries who bought the -A's are stuck. Super expensive maintenance now and super expensive upgrades later. This also kills all future foreign sales of the -A model.
I would say the F35 is taking a step too far in quest of taking the next big step. They tried to make it some kind of flying AI run cyborg.
 

Anlsvrthng

Senior Member
Registered Member
The article only talks about the Air Force replacing the F-16. The Navy simply doesn't have the money to seek alternatives for the next 10 years with Columbia eating up the biggest chunk. The -B is as good as current technology allows. -B compromised -A. If -B is kept, -C will too to spread current production and future upgrade costs. If only the -B is kept, the per unit cost will be astronomical thus unthinkable. Good example is the F-22 upgrade program. With such a small fleet, you just cannot afford to do much custom for MLU.

If I am China, I wouldn't bother with a VSTOL jet. I'll put all the resources into UCAV's.
Type A is the most robust, cheapest and matured of all of them.

If the USA can't afford the type A , then how can they afford the B and C type ?
 

gelgoog

Captain
Registered Member
The USAF should have long ago invested on a second source for the engine.
They did it for the F-16/F-15 and should have done it for the F-35 too.

Remember when they claimed the F-35 wouldn't have expensive to maintain RAM coatings? That always sounded fishy to me.
 

Anlsvrthng

Senior Member
Registered Member
The USAF should have long ago invested on a second source for the engine.
They did it for the F-16/F-15 and should have done it for the F-35 too.

Remember when they claimed the F-35 wouldn't have expensive to maintain RAM coatings? That always sounded fishy to me.
The engine must have mindblowing expensive development cost.

Double souring most likely would end up with two inferior engine.
 

TerraN_EmpirE

Tyrant King
The USAF should have long ago invested on a second source for the engine.
They did it for the F-16/F-15 and should have done it for the F-35 too.

Remember when they claimed the F-35 wouldn't have expensive to maintain RAM coatings? That always sounded fishy to me.
They had a second engine option but the problem isn’t new engines it’s repair to existing engines. That means that the same engine shops would have been having even more issues in reset of two engine sets.

compared to raptors it is cheaper. But it’s never going to be free. Aviation grade Ram materials changed between the two with many of F35s coatings being baked in reducing those that degrade. How ever no matter the aircraft VLO requires Money. Also the number factor comes into play. F16 has thousands in service F35 a few hundred that means less established logistics.
 

gelgoog

Captain
Registered Member
Su-57 is supposed to be able to use lower observable coatings which can be applied in case of wartime but doesn't use those by default.
Only cheaper to maintain low observable materials are used by default.
Why the F-35 doesn't use a similar scheme is beyond me.

With regards to the engine, GE and Rolls Royce worked on it for the ATF competition and also in later programs. The prototype flew in the ATF competition. One later program investigated its use in a 6th generation application not long ago. I doubt it would cost that much in R&D to bring it to production.
 

TerraN_EmpirE

Tyrant King
First, SU57 is to date nonexistent. A handful of T50 and a Single Preproduction prototype.
Second the schemes you are laying out is unproven beyond lore.
Third this isn’t like ERA Tiles where in you can just add them on to the tank. Because of Aerodynamics it has to be streamlined into the skin of the jet. As such I doubt the scheme you are laying out is even possible unless the aircraft is rolled off the line with one skin, then rolled into a major refit cycle at depot level to strip the skin of the fighter then Re skin it. Paint based RAM is part of the mix and four point five Gen types have used that to get marginal RCS reductions. The major price point on VLO is major structure choices like material used, shaping, layering and composites. The Russians early on admitted they favored kinetic energy at the cost of RCS.
It’s easier to deploy a ready to go Stealth into rapid deployment already stealth Than to have to cycle it back because of war time.
 

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