USAF News and Discussion

ngatimozart

Super Moderator
Staff member
Verified Defense Pro
Plenty of possibilities:
  • some stoner protecting his marijuana crop
  • a neo nazi nutter
  • anti govt nutter
  • crim on the run
  • another type of nutter.
Trouble is plenty of nutters with guns there.
 

swerve

Super Moderator
Some o' them there nutters don't like guvment - any guvment.

And they probably imagine that owning a piece of the Earth's surface means they also own everything under it down to the centre of the planet & all the air above it.
 

Ranger25

Active Member
Staff member
THE USAF continues to move forward with its 6th gen aircraft otherwise know as the Next Gen Air Dominance. Will have increased range, payload, AI, and be optionally manned. If true, seems to be ahead of schedule And may lead to a decrease in the F35 program.

 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
Interesting development, especially wrt which company built it. If it is LM, it would seem to screw with their 2400 F-35 domestic build. If it is Boeing, why bother with the aggressive F-15EX pitch? NG, maybe they figured out how to modify a B-21 to be a NGAD fighter. Possibility three could be fastest and best if the Raider’s progress is as reported. In any event, good to see advances to leap ahead of China’s emerging jets, especially regarding range and payload.
 

swerve

Super Moderator
Demonstrators aren't production contracts. It could be a long time before any aircraft based on it enters service, if ever, so it would be unlikely to be in competition with F-15EX, & from LM's point of view it could be seen as possibly leading to an F-35 successor, not a competitor.
 

Terran

Member
I don’t think it “Screws” with either. At least not yet, though it might demand some inventive production strategy when production stage is reached.
Since this is a demonstrator it’s likely lacking some bits and bobs heck probably not even pre production. The official prototype wasn’t supposed to fly till about 2025.

As to mission it’s not a replacement for F35.
F35 sits as the low end strike platform. USAF Penetrating Counter Air is to serve as a high end air superiority machine like F22 was supposed to be. As such the two platforms don’t occupy the same place but partner with each other.

F15EX is getting the push because F15C and D are operating past their structural life cycles due to the USAF aiming to operate the type deep into the 2040s yet the C and D because of they way they were built suffer from a structural fault in the Longeron and exceptionally old wiring requiring a degree of restomod that basically costs as much as buying new ones. The EX is as the USAF wants to keep a fourth gen platform flying for missions state side and fill that mission for the next 2-3 decades.

The questions for LM or Boeing if they were the builders is where to build? The Ft. Worth Texas plant 4 is cranking out all three flavors of F35, Plant 6 in Marietta seems quiet there is also the opening Kingman plant in South Carolina for F16 exports.
The Boeing St. Louis plant has F15EX and T7 contracts on top of Block 3 Rino Hornets.
Of course there is always Plant 42 Palmdale. Northrop Grumman wants a contract beyond bombers and naval awacs.


I highly doubt B21 is the fighter it makes no sense. A subsonic bomber as a fighter is like a carrier that’s a battleship. I have heard the argument but it’s not reasonable to take a platform intended for bombing and Dale Brown Mega Fortress a fighter.
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
In NG’s case perhaps modified Raider is a poor description of what they may have prototyped assuming NG was the contractor. They are a subcontractor on the F-35 and their stealth expertise is well established. There is also their X-47B effort a couple of years ago.
 

ngatimozart

Super Moderator
Staff member
Verified Defense Pro
Who says that it's one of the three remaining primes? It could be a new player on the field who isn't restricted by the old way of doing things? The article alluded to Elon Musk as an example and why not? Look at what he's done and doing with Space X. Who else had the cojones to put an expensive car into orbit playing a David Bowie song? Could it be him or someone similar who has come up with a non traditional way of designing testing and building a prototype? They could also organise the manufacturing process the same way, because that is where they are going to have to make their money. So adaptive manufacturing, composite materials etc., may be the order of the day along with fibre cabling rather than wire, amongst other things.
 

Terran

Member
IMO,
Even Elon Musk’s Space X launched Star man stunt was built on a firmly established hardware and R&D/Production capacity platform. The Falcon Heavy being three Falcon 9 first stages mated as one. Musk spent years developing the Falcon 9 from initial work on Falcon 1.
For someone to come out of the either with a new military aircraft production lab seems a long shot at best. Musk or Bezzos have the money but the interest?
Since this is a demonstrator it’s possible albeit with limits.
Smaller firms work on smaller products Sierra Technical Services or Kratos for example both have done or concepts for VLO type aircraft yet both fall into the drone category of small aircraft(well some larger the size of a Talon) and unmanned.
The other other option is that the USAF did it in house. They designed a fifth gen target drone in the past. Air Force Academy cadets have role in creating DoD’s 1st large stealth target drone
Yet in the end someone has to build it.

To date we have had the big three publish concepts for the Job. Lockheed Martin, Boeing and Northrop Grumman. All three have their own Advanced R&D teams for just this kind of program Skunk works/Phantom works/ Scaled Composites and the capacity to build one off demonstrators making them the most likely suspects for such.
Yes Additive manufacturing is impressive and no doubt critical yet has limits here as what is likely to be at the heart of the Sixth gen is the whole package deal.
Fifth gens are a combination of New manufacturing, new sensors, new computers, New interfaces, New communications, New engines.
Sixth gen is likely to take that farther with manned optional, DEW, more fuel efficient, and who knows what else.
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
Who says that it's one of the three remaining primes? It could be a new player on the field who isn't restricted by the old way of doing things? The article alluded to Elon Musk as an example and why not? Look at what he's done and doing with Space X. Who else had the cojones to put an expensive car into orbit playing a David Bowie song? Could it be him or someone similar who has come up with a non traditional way of designing testing and building a prototype? They could also organise the manufacturing process the same way, because that is where they are going to have to make their money. So adaptive manufacturing, composite materials etc., may be the order of the day along with fibre cabling rather than wire, amongst other things.
Elon would surely be letting everybody know about his latest technology achievement if it was him.;) I guess one other possibility is General Atomics but to my knowledge GA has never built a manned jet.
 

ngatimozart

Super Moderator
Staff member
Verified Defense Pro
Elon would surely be letting everybody know about his latest technology achievement if it was him.;) I guess one other possibility is General Atomics but to my knowledge GA has never built a manned jet.
Not necessarily. He'd know that it would also be in his best interest to keep his trap firmly shut. He's no fool.
 

ngatimozart

Super Moderator
Staff member
Verified Defense Pro
Kinda interesting. Also click baiting in a way According to this AFSOC is thinking that the eventual replacement for CV22 should have Jet speed.
Its not impossible. The Do31 concept comes to mind.
The Dornier Do 31 was ahead of its time, much like the TSR-2. Given current technology and knowledge maybe the concept, not the aircraft, could be revisited.
 
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