Aussies’ modest proposal: Sell us F-22s, mate

Aussies’ modest proposal: Sell us F-22s, mate

For F-35 proponents, every sunrise brings new reasons for unease about the future of the program. It regularly gets bad headlines in the U.S. The Brits now say they’ll wait until 2015 before committing to buy any more jets. And as we’ve talked about before, there are rumblings Down Under that suggest the Australians may be losing their patience.

But proponents in the U.S. and Australia can take heart about one thing — these are the guys they’re up against:

Some of the most vehement critics of Australia’s involvement in the Joint Strike Fighter program had their day in the sun on Tuesday afternoon when they testified before a high level parliamentary defence committee. Representatives of anti-JSF think tank Air Power Australia and RepSim Pty Ltd were given an hour to make their case before the defence subcommittee of the Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade.

By the time the group was 30 minutes into its presentation at least five of the committee members had left the room.

Remaining committee members, including Opposition defence spokesman Senator David Johnston, were told the JSF program was a failure, the planes only had limited stealth capability and that they were compromised by the use of a core design to produce three different variants; a conventional land based plane, a short take off and landing variant that will replace the US Marine Corps’ Harrier jets and a carrier version.

Air Power Australia wants the Australian Government to abandon the JSF and, instead, exert pressure on the US Government to scrap the program in favour of having Lockheed Martin re-open its F-22 Raptor production line and make that plane, arguably the world’s best air superiority fighter, available to the international partners.

Yeah, that’s gonna happen. You can’t blame them for taking what they believe is the best position for their government — and, after all, they’re standing upside down on the bottom of the planet, so the blood is probably rushing to their heads. But if Lockheed’s own Amur’kun advocates in Congress couldn’t save the F-22, the chances are even more remote that Canberra can do it.

All other things being equal, an export version of the F-22 could be a great idea for the U.S. On the What’s-Good-for-Lockheed-is-Good-for-America front, the company resumes cranking out airplanes down in Marietta. The Australian and Japanese air forces start flying the world’s greatest super-jet from their own fields in the Western Pacific. Lockheed comes back to the Air Force and says, hey, we’re so good at building these things in volume now, we’ll sell you a whole batch for fifty bucks apiece. The waves upon waves of F-22s in the skies block out the sun.

But this schoolboy fantasy will never be. As defense commentator Loren Thompson wrote this week, the U.S. has a spotty track record in dealing with potential export customers for military airplanes. He set up his post as an explanation of why India might have chosen France’s Dassault Rafale over the F-35:

New Delhi is a complicated place, and there were probably multiple reasons for the decision. But here’s one factor that hasn’t been reported. India made three different requests for information to the U.S. government over the last several years about sea-based versions of the F-35, and somehow nobody in Washington ever managed to answer any of them. Not surprisingly, the Indians eventually went away, but the lack of a U.S. response can’t have made a good impression.

This situation is reminiscent of the way Japan, another first-tier Asian power, was treated when it made repeated inquiries concerning possible purchase of the twin-engine F-22 fighter. Military planners in Tokyo felt the F-22 was uniquely suited to Japan’s geostrategic circumstances, and therefore were seriously contemplating its purchase. Their inquiries weren’t just ignored in Washington, but bluntly rebuffed. Tokyo eventually decided to buy the single-engine F-35 instead, which is just as stealthy but not as agile in the most demanding engagements (it’s still far superior to any foreign fighter).

So it seems the Aussies should not feel particularly slighted about either their membership in Club F-35 or a few peoples’ F-22 aspirations. Dealing with the U.S. apparently is a headache for everyone.

Join the Conversation

I can only assume the comments came from Carlo Kopp. No wonder half the panel walked out, that man is a hysterical loon – anyone who takes him seriously is doing themselves a profound disservice.

The F-35 is an exceedingly expensive engineering disaster. If there are no good news coming out this year, it needs to be cancelled altogether. Hopefully we will have a Republican President in Jan 2013 who will look for alternative USAF leadership and will force restarting production of an upgraded F-22 with export versions as well. But first he would have to squash sequestration, otherwise the Super Tucano will become the next US air superiority fighter.

Anyone calling the F35 “superior fighter” is either a liar, a ignorant, or a insane.

Russian (and others) strategists must be laughing loud…

I could imagine seeing far worse things than a formation of Raptors in RAAF paint (or for that matter with Rising Suns) appearing off my wingtip!

They walked out because the APA was humiliating them, making them look like incompetent losers.

The danger that he would simply ask the question — “is the only reason why Australia is buying the F-35 lemon is to show subservience to America ?” was just too great so they had to get out.

Fat chance Kopp.

Or an actual fighter pilot instead of a keyboard warrior like yourself.

It was Goon, actually. He thinks the unarmed T-50 will sweep the F-35 from the skies. (By ramming?)

The F-22 is still waiting for the F-35 to be completed so they can copy the homework and replace the ancient CPUs on the Raptor that are running Ada.

I’m all in favor of a F-35D that borrows some shaping from the F-22, is twin-seat, twin-engine and longer ranged, but the USAF would rather buy a lite version of the B-2.

I agree with the Aussies F-22 is better than aF-35 and way better than a F-18. Stupid politics gets in the way.

I like the idea of giving an export version of the F-22 to Australia. The only nations that I think we could trust to sell the F-22 to are the UK, Australia, Canada, and maybe New Zealand. I would only export the F-22 to Israel if Russia starts exporting the PAK-FA to their enemies in the region. The real problem with selling the F-22 to Australia is how to justify doing it without making the other allies jealous. I recommend making list of requirements for any nation wanting to by the F-22 that can justify their need for it. If the needs are legitimate then they could buy it. Of course we’ll be the ones to decide what is and what is not legitimate.

You would think the State Department or whoever else is involved would have an agency or someone responsible for replying to formal information requests. America is open for business, but the secretaries at lunch.

They do!

See: http://​pmddtc​.state​.gov/​r​e​g​u​l​a​t​i​o​n​s​_​l​a​w​s​/​a​e​c​a​.​htm


I would seriously consider adding Japan and Germany to that short list. I strongly suspect that an “export version” of the F-22 might be very hard to do (which is perhaps why we have held off on the FMS even this long). So… for the “short list” we sell them the “full up” aircraft with a clear requirement to support the aircraft via US-controlled channels, i.e. if you want the F-22 forget about coproduction and technology transfer. That way we could give our allies, but only our very good and very trusted allies, access to the best defense technology without necessarily compromising the “crown jewels” too badly.

Here’s an idea, why don’t they design and build their own damn aircraft?

Because it costs a huge amount of capital and infrastructure to do that, when it is (usually) cheaper to just get a license version of an already existing airframe. This isn’t pre-WWII technology where you can just copy an airframe from what you saw on the newsreels. Even if you factor the idea of “borrowing” an aircraft with the intent of ripping off the design specs (ie. China to Russia) there is still inherent problems in duplicating the same results. Australia does not have the necessary experience (than or even now) to build an indigenous fighter with the capabilities they are needing.

If it hasn’t been said yet:

1. The F-22 is no longer in production.
2. They aren’t for sale even if it was still in production.

It might cost them money to defend their own country. Oh the horror. How could anyone be so cruel as to suggest they defend their own damn selves? Next thing you know, they might develop some justifiable national pride too, and start taking responsibility for their own actions. I shudder to think of how horrible that might be.

Air Power Australia has been busy.

I don’t think the Germans would be too interested in buying the F-22 since they already put so much money into the Eurofighter. The F-22 doesn’t fit the needs of their air force either since it doesn’t fight too much. I don’t see a point to selling high performance weapons with classified to technology to allies that in all likely hood neither need it nore have a viable threat to use them on.

I’m a little iffy on Japan. Make no mistake the Japanese are a great and trustworthy ally and I see the benefit of giving them F-22s should we engage in conflict with China or North Korea. However, they are just a little too close to China for my taste. We already lost an F-22 in Alaska because of a faulty oxygen system that has yet to be fixed. If for whatever reason a Japanese F-22 was lost in an area where China could reach it before us the PLAAF would get a 20 year jump in technology. I like the Japanese and they have capable pilots, but for now I think they will do fine with the F-35A.

“Or an actual fighter pilot ”

yea that fighter jock sarcasm can be so cruel.

But they don’t speak English LOL

Really give it to Israel you might as well flight it over and deliver it directly to China.

Yep the raptor production has been finished for 3 whole months now.

Loren Thompson on how all those problems testing found (well only the 20% of the testing that has been done so far found) could have been avoided scrapping the tests and just mass producing broken fail jets.

“Most of those delays, if they occur, won’t be caused by internal program problems. They will be caused by the desire of the Pentagon’s testing community to conduct a vast array of redundant flight tests — literally thousands of them. Why? Because that’s what testers do.”

Dfens, if I ever wanted to hire someone to improve our international relations and use sound tactical judgement in politics and war strategy you are the last person I would go to.

So you would like to see an entirely new aircraft then is what your saying…

Hey, the day when we could FORCE an ally to buy our weapon systems is long gone. Im just saying that if the Germans or Japanese wanted to buy F-22s in some significant quantity I personally would be very hard pressed to say “NO!”. We can play all sorts of “what ifs”, for example, what if we did a training deployment of F-22s to Korea and lost one over the ocean… what if we deployed to Singapore and lost one, .… LOTS of options for that, adding the Japanese to the Raptor community would not seem, to me, to be a great increase in that risk.


Because Israel is so well known for giving the Chinese access to U.S. fighter planes… right?

Or is that the Pakistanis you’re thinking about? Or the U.S. itself that shipped over the jet engines?

When the F-35 program collapses no one can say they were not warned.

No one likes the truth.

All the APA crowd does is drown out the real concerns, problems, and possible solutions with their sky-is-falling rhetoric.

If you knew anything about manufacturing aicraft you’d realize how stupid that comment is.

Hey, you ever figure out how to get a Subpar Hornet to land on a gator? (snort, guffaw)

Even a gadfly has a purpose, if nothing else by making others consider and more carefully think through their positions. A flippant and egocentric dismissal of the gadfly usually indicates that the rebuttal is more difficult than it should be. Why is it so diffucult to just logically and reasonably counter the APA discussions with facts rather than just equating them to “Chicken Little”? If the hard facts dont do it, then its opinion vs opinion and Id call that a discussion, which is why most of us are on this forum, so… Have at it, my friend! :-)

Have you figured out how the US or its allies will afford enough F-35s?

Disagree. APA just represents an unpopular theme but increasingly, they are being proven correct… The JSF is being protected and not objectively managed. The faults of the F-22 (costs) that were exploited in order to justify terminated the F-22 and up-ing the ante on the JSF could easily be turned and applied back to the JSF. The result would destroy all arguments for the JSF if it had to face the same criticism of the F-22…

Like the F-35 is carrying any weapons it can use after 10+ years od SDD (EMD) ???

How many 4th gen will you need when modern air defenses will be killing them like fish in a barrel?

Looks like the Sweetman / Kopp fanbase is present in force. Hey guys, why are you so deluded as to think any 4th generation aircraft is going to be able to handle a T-50 or J-20?

They walked because he’s an idiot along with his organisation, which erroneously poses as one that actually knows anything.

The F-22 is a hanger queen. It takes 30 hours of maintenance for every one hour of flight time. The external skin is so sensitive it cannot stay in the rain. The cost prudent and forward solution is to increase the production of the F-15K being built for the Korean Air Force which includes the updated avionics and radar from the F-22 suite. The F-15 is 2/3 cheaper than an F-35 and is still the superior aircraft in the world outside the weather shy F-22. All the rumors about the SU-30 and 35 superiority were minimized when they actually participated in Red Flag. Bring back the Eagle!!

Doesn’t look like we’ll be able to do the job either way then, does it?

It’s not an all or nothing proposition.

Ain’t that the truth! :-)

Best Money save solution is to scrap F-35 and build more F-22 and upgrade all F-15s Same or Israel.

Oh? So what’s a half of a win?

Faulty Oxygen system yet to be fixed? Are you implying some malfeasance? If so, prove it or stop spreading lies.

I read your frustration, but it is really more than 2 years gone for all the bits and pieces suppliers. It is out of production and can not be restarted without exceptional national will. I don’t see fortitude like that in the tea leaves. The taxpayers will need to pay to start over, I’m afraid.

Normally you actually make quite a bit of sense. Not this round however.…..

That’s comforting. When we start cutting non-defense programs, don’t be surprised when people ask “for what?” When we tell them “fighter planes,” don’t be surprised when they start asking hard questions about the program. Can we give them satisfactory answers, at this point?

Every day there is more news about what a horrible job we do of developing weapons, and you think all of the free world’s weapon development should be done here? Now that’s crazy. And, it certainly wouldn’t hurt for other countries to do their share, for their own sake as much as for ours.

Hi sferrin,

Broader question is it not? How do we afford a second land army by any other name in these dire budget times? Also, in a real shooting war (not a side-show like Libya), can the JCS ever imagine a scenario where big deck aircraft carriers will not be present?
Finally, it is interesting that the Super-Slow Hornet in its Block II form brings more over all value to the joint theater commander. Both the Super and F-35 are aircraft that will not be able to stand up to modern anti-access threats. For everything else the Super brings more value, all-day, every day. A sad comment on our requirements for aircraft.

As CNO mentioned we need the right mix of weapon capability and plqtform capability. A gen 4.5.platform with new standoff weapons will do better than an unaffordable F-35 that shows no promise of ever completing SDD let alone become opertional.

I think the Super Hornet is a better overall deal and brings a lot more bang for the buck than the Eagle. It’s also more reliable and flexible since it can land on aircraft carriers and use austere airfields. It’s also a little cheaper, but still has all the same techno-goodies that the late model F-15’s have.

All of you guys are crazy for wanting to build legacy fighters. These simply aren’t survivable in future scenarios, and for the cost we are better investing in the future TODAY. THe f-35 is a new program, the kinks will be worked out and it will hopefully shun the critics.

We aren’t willing to hand out our pride and joy yet, all we need is for some maintenance guy to sell the blue prints to some china man for $100 and it compromises the program.

Did you know that they paid 200M$ for storing the tools? The productions is really stopped. They kept the option to build more in the future but it’s going to cost a lot of money and considering that each f-22 cost about 150M$-400M$ that’s a quite expensive plane

No there is a lot of documented case involving epoxia-related symptoms, and article points out that they think that it is related to a toxin. There have been death because of this.

If you don’t believe me, google it.

To save money, the solution is to scrap the failed F-35 JSF project and bring back the F-22 production line, build more of those aircraft and remove the ludicrous export ban and sell the Raptor to the US Allies.

Buy more F-15Es, or develop a new single seat F-15, based on the latest advancements in F-15E, in a similar concept to the Su-35S Super Flanker-E.

If any F-15 advocates think the new pre-posed single seat F-15, based on the two-seat F-15E is a awesome idea. Perhaps this great concept can be emailed to Brad Jones Director, F-15 US Air Force Development Programs, Roger Besancenez Boeing Vice President, F-15 Program or Richard ‘Rick’ Banholzer, Boeing’s Director of Business Development for Air Force Fighters and Weapons about the idea of developing a new proposed single-seat F-15 as an export variant for new and existing customers to purchase the fighter for predictable costs. As an alternative the USAF could by the new single-seat variants to replace the existing C/D models and use them for spare parts to keep the new variants operational.

So therefore a mixed force of new built Eagles and Raptors would present a potent combination of flexibility and capability. With their greater stealth, the F-22 can be the aircraft of choice to penetrate particularly high threat zones. On the ‘friendly’ side of the forward-edge of the battle area — for e.g. cruise missile defence, defending high value assets, and if the rules of engagement dictate close in engagement the F-15 will be a better choice.

High capability aircraft are the aircraft of choice, not the small fighters with short range and very limited weapons payload in increased numbers.

Loren Thompson have no diploma in engineering. He can provide interesting information, or pure BS, like that defense projects are late and more expensive because of Ada…

If someone think that such projects explodes by hundreds of billions because of the facts that Ada is strongly typed –and yes you have to type words like begin, end instead of {} — have no idea of what he is talking about. Code validation here is critical and Ada is well adapted for that; in reality absolute code validation is impossible and even some form of code validation is too expensive for many military projects…

this is a loony article. the f22 can barely stay aloft and the true cost per plane is 400 million. only the f35 will be a bigger boon doogle and yet another dog from lockheed martin. the aussies were caught trying to start ww3 between china and the usa, and are committed to advancing china’s interest. neither england, israel or australia can be trusted with american military secrets as they are always leaking or selling them to the communist chinese. stupid article, and stupid idea.


Just to let you know about your spelling, its been typed “Subpar”, instead its Super.

I am not a weapon specialist but the real question is: How do you think that those damn expensive 5th generation are going to do any better against those upcoming 6th generation fighter?

The rumors are that the eurofighter with the AESA radar can detect very well a f-35. Interception missile capable to intercept furtive plane are comming, like the METEOR, which even a 4th generation plane.

Lets suppose a moment that half of the ocident buy 3/4 furtive f-35. I can guarantee you that the next upgrade the chinease and russian are going to made will be about destroying furtive target. If S-400 can’t do this, the S-500 will.

No doubt, these 5th generation fighter are fullfiled of lie: they are going to need upgrade all the time and for that a more open plane should be very welcome, like the eurofighter.

I am canadian and I would choose an eurofighter any day before a f-35.

The F-35 is unfixable

typo on the second paragraph: which even a 4th generation plane will carry very well, like the eurofitghter.

Yrreiht — I really hate the F-35 JSF from the very beginning when the development started in the early 1990’s, I don’t find the turkey a superior fighter at all. I find the JSF advocates calling the “JSF a superior fighter” are the ones that either a liar, a ignorant, or a insane.

“to do their share”

Dfens, when did selling a product to someone qualify as a burden?

Hello Azcat

Have a read about having a mixed force of Eagles and Raptors, just scroll down below and see what you reckon about my idea. I totally agree about the F-15 is 2/3 cheaper than an F-35 and the Eagle is still the superior aircraft in the world. The Eagles or Silent Eagles are as cheap and easy to produce as they’ve ever been. I’m a F-15 fan, they are beautiful and terrific long range fighter for any air force. I’m also a F-22 fan as well, despite the high maintenance for every one hour of flight time costs.

Actually Azcat did you know that Boeing is continuing manufacturing variants of its F-15? Its been extended all the way until the 2020s, which is great news. If you haven’t heard about it, the information is on this website on PAS11: Boeing’s iron Eagle and Boeing’s iron Eagles, part 2.


I have colleagues working for the defence, we take the APA very seriously and we’re not ourselves taking profound disservice. The JSF advocates are the ones that take Tom Burbage and his colleagues from Lockheed Martin seriously are the ones doing themselves a profound disservice.

The APA team are the source of truth.

We’d never sell the F-22 to Israel b/c 6mths fr/now we’d be looking at the black hole on Google Earth that used to be Tehran & miss the yearly UN rants fr/the Martyr Formerly Known as I’m-ah-idiotjahb

Alan. Certainly not stupid article, and not stupid idea.

Your the one that is stupid calling the F-35 “superior fighter” either that your a liar, ignorant, or insane to even think it’s the right aircraft for any air forces or navy. England, Israel or Australia can be trusted with american military secrets as they are always leaking or selling them especially the F-22.

Gman — Well if you don’t like the article and the idea. Why don’t you **** off, claiming the F-35 is a “superior fighter”, either that your a liar, ignorant, or insane to even think it’s the right aircraft for any air forces or navy. Why don’t you go back to your trailer park with your ridiculous pro-JSF advocates and your JSF boss from Lockheed Martin yanky accent.

The JSF is a lemon and is totally incapable of facing high end threats that would not cement Australia’s regional air power lead. This has shown that the JSF has a lot of limitations and it cannot do a lot of things as aspected to show and promise that is a true 5th generation fighter. Because it does not meet all the requirements of partner nations, it has inferior acceleration, poor manoeuvrability, short range with no loiter time and very limited weapons payload that is unsuited for bomber and cruise missile defence and unsuited for air superiority role when compared against Sukhoi family of aircraft, particularly post 2010 configurations; definitely post 2015 evolved growth variants that won’t be able to survive against the Russian/Chinese fighters etc etc.


All of you pro-JSF advocates are crazy for wanting to increase the lemon JSF. These simply aren’t survivable in future scenarios. The F-35 is a failed program, the kinks will be not be worked out and will continue with the teething troubles in operational service in 2018 or later.

“Here’s an idea, why don’t they design and build their own damn aircraft?”

At one time Canada did just that. It was called the Avro Arrow, and it was SO far ahead of anything that the USA made that the USAF whined, stomped, pulled their hair, then cried SO much to the powers that be that they exerted pressure on Canada NOT to continue making it, then promptly stole every engineer working on the project for future American fighters and NASA. So fuck off with that statement, and go back to your trailer park with your ridiculous boss hogg accent and drink some more beer fatty.


You’re missing the entrie broader point, anyone calling the F-35 “superior fighter” like you is either a liar, ignorant, or insane.

Russian/Chinese and others are laughing their heads out loud… saying and thinking that the US, Australia, Japan etc are going for the turkey JSF that is totally useless, weak and can’t survivable in future scenarios etc.

Matt — The turkey JSF is too unfixable. It must be cancelled altogether. Its a dud of the project and the biggest failure in the world.


If I was a Defence Minister, I’ll completely scrap the JSF, nail the program into the coffin and put it in the fire and see it burn for good as a cancellation.

The Avro Arrow was that mythical unicorn beasty its performance was no where near what was advertised and would have been missile fodder like the super duper fast Mig-25 zooming along at mach 2.8 for 3 minutes beyond which it blew flaming chunks of motor out its tailpipe and exploded.


The enemies out their will be thinking that western countries going for the JSF, thinking “you people are absolute idiots”. Just to let you know, because I know how they feel about western nations going for the turkey F-35 that is totally unsuited for any air forces and navy. They’ll think that for sure. Just watch out.

Are you really unaware that Israel is well known for selling U.S. secrets to China? Disinfo troll!

@Phil Ewing

Relying on corporate shills like Dr Feelgood Thompson for factual information ain’t gonna win you any Pulitzers . His claim that India’s requests for F-35 info were being snubbed by the unhelpfully snotty US is a flat-out falsehood. The link below leads to a January 2010 article where LM reps are directly quoted about their F-35 presentation to the Indian Navy. Here’s a taste:

“Lockheed Martin’s Vice President for Business Development Orville Prins told India Strategic that a presentation about the aircraft was made to the Indian Navy recently after it expressed interest in the newer generation of aircraft for its future carrier-based aircraft requirements. .…. Lockheed Martin apparently made the presentation to India after authorization by the US Department of Defense (DOD), but Prins pointed out that the F 35 could be sold only after clearance from the US State Department, for which bilateral negotiations between New Delhi and Washington would need to be held once India expressed interest.“

Thompson is wrong when he says that the Indian requests for F-35 info were ignored by the US govt. The quotes below are from a Jan 2010 article in the India Strategic online magazine.

“Lockheed Martin’s Vice President for Business Development Orville Prins told India Strategic that a presentation about the aircraft was made to the Indian Navy recently after it expressed interest in the newer generation of aircraft for its future carrier-based aircraft requirements.….Lockheed Martin apparently made the presentation to India after authorization by the US Department of Defense (DOD), but Prins pointed out that the F 35 could be sold only after clearance from the US State Department, for which bilateral negotiations between New Delhi and Washington would need to be held once India expressed interest.“

When I was in the RAAF, doctrine was that air superiority is best achieved by taking ourt the opposing air force on the ground. That is why we got the F-111’s with 1200nm radius of action but kept short ranged Mirage 111O’s then F-18A’s as back up to that doctrine.
APA apparrently ignore this doctrine, as the F-22 has minimal Air-Gound — limited to undguided SDBs in the latest approved update — and are very short ranged; about 400nm when 50nm of supercruise is used, about the same as an F-18A.
F-35 has AGM-158 in its baseline load and other long range and guided weapons.
Why go for a super, short range air-air platform with iron bombs as back-up?

Thompson is wrong when he says that the Indian requests for F-35 info were ignored by the US govt. The quotes below are from a Jan 2010 article in the India Strategic online magazine.

“Lockheed Martin’s Vice President for Business Development OrvillePrins told India Strategic that a presentation about the aircraft was made to the Indian Navy recently after it expressed interest in the newer generation of aircraft for its future carrier-based aircraft requirements.….Lockheed Martin apparently made the presentation to India after authorization by the US Department of Defense (DOD), but Prins pointed out that the F 35 could be sold only after clearance from the US State Department, for which bilateral negotiations between New Delhi and Washington would need to be held once India expressed interest.” http://​www​.indiastrategic​.in/​t​o​p​s​t​o​r​i​e​s​4​6​2​.​htm

Three times I’ve tried to post a short quote from this link below. And three times it’s disappeared.

What’s the problem?

50 nm of supercruise?! Where on earth did you find that nugget? At supercruise speed, of say 13–15 nm per minute, that’s only 3 or 4 minutes of flight. I somehow doubt that the F22’s range is cut to 400 nm after using 4 minutes or less of non afterburner throttle settings.

No, and if the weight is busted on the B model they won’t be able to land that on one either without dumping all the fuel and every unexpended piece of ordnance.

Why would anyone go up against a T-50 or J-20? What moron conducted the SEADs mission incorrectly and left their airbases intact?

The Avro Arrow was an impressive aircraft, but to blame its cancellation on the USAF and thus the Americans is nonsense. It was Canadian politicians who killed it in favor of the Bomarc missile.

It was “SO far ahead of anything the USA made”? At the time the XF-108 Rapier was in development and that would have offered similar performance. Of course when the Canadian aerospace industry was hit like that many American aerospace companies would be looking to grab up experienced ex-employees. What do you expect?

Which specifics are you referring to? There are of course real problems as outlined in the QLR reports and such. Reports which still recommended continuing the F-35 program and found no “fundamental” design flaws.

Then there are APA’s combat scenarios where Super Hornets are flown by lobotomized pilots who forget they have AIM-9X and JMHCS, both F-35s and Super Hornets are using older AMRAAM variants, upgrades planned for later F-35 blocks aren’t accounted for, Russian countermeasures always work etc.

Some of their arguments don’t seem to take into account the specifications and requirements for the aircraft either. They point out how it is similar in weight to the F-105 yet neglect to mention that the F135 engine produces more thrust dry than the J75 did in full afterburner. Plus advancements seen in the past several decades.

Oh yeah? Show me the proof.

SEAD would be used to negate an enemy’s SAM’s. taking out airbases should be done with cruise missiles or stealth bombers.

If he was just an idiot they could have simply rebutted his assertions. No they walked out because the facts were too embarrassing to face.

>Are you really unaware that Israel is well known for selling U.S. secrets to China?

I guess that’s a yes.

To my knowledge no fan-boy has ever built an aircraft

Gman — Aviation Week early 2006 quote of USAF F-22 test report stating that F-22 exceeded its specified range (Radius of Action) of about 380nm by 10% with 50nm of that at supercruise. Can’t find the URL but it has been generally corobated by other articles. There is no free lunch at supersonic speed, even if you are not using AB, wave drag will eat you!

The avro arrow was the only fighter to have the capability to shut down a U-2. Interception ceilling: 75000 ft (definitely not for a long period but it was said to be able to do it). If I am not wrong the iroquois engine, 20,000lbs of thrust each, came from P&W.

And the avro arrow was mainly made of special aluminium alloy and titanium, which was said to be already capable of handling more than mach 2 (its official speed limit) A version with more titanium was on the way, with mach 3 capable speed.

IMHO the only problem to have happened with the arrow was the unrealistic requirement from the RCAF, a totally unmanageable cost explosion can only happen. And then came the stupid canadian politics.

I work for a supplier and we’re still supporting the program through reliability improvements and even repairs of existing parts and I’m certain we’re not the only ones. It would take a bit of time for us to get into full production again, but not years, more like weeks on our level.

I say sell as many F-22 to the Aussies and the Japs too as they want. Load ‘em up with the latest gadgets, offer upgrade paths for everything. A page right out of Sun Tzu.

Watch China squirm.

I cannot believe that you make such a slanderous statement about the united kingdom and australia. Two of the most trusted allies the united states has ever had. You obviously have never heard of five eyes. The UK and Australia has been privileged to have been exposed to the highest levels of us military technology and have contributed technological discoveries as part of that relationship. Its stupid hick comments like yours that reduce the significance of an alliance that has existed for 75 years. Australians & Brits are dying today in Afghanistan because america was attacked 10 years ago, so don’t accuse allies of betraying alliances when these are the countries that do sacrifice when america needs friends.

Putting all your eggs in one basket always sounds like a great idea.

And just where did you get that number? I can deduce whether you have any clue what your talking about if you can answer one question. Where are the F-22 production tooling stored at? I await your response. By the way, I was incharge of B-2 curtailment, and manged all B-2 tooling for 10 years.

Testing is just one more way to drag out the development effort. As long as the contractors make a profit on development, testing, and engineering, why ever go into production? Production just means the same level of profit with higher risks.

All I can do is shake my head. Way to many posters spouting garbage as fact, and you know who you are.

The F-22 and F-35 are draggy as hell, especially when they go supersonic. The F-23 makes both of these look stupid when you see how much more range it had in supercruise. Of course, that was an airplane that was actually designed by someone instead of a nameless, faceless committee.

No. That’s exactly the point. With all the public scrutiny, no corrupt high-ups, corporate or otherwise, will be able to get away with budget over-runs or other dirty tricks. The F-35 might, gasp, actually work after all!.….…

No one but us chickens ;).…..

To restart a line is called “reconstitute”. What you are missing is when they recon the line, it will be a true cost of production. All the R&D costs are not rolled into the fly away cost. DoD and Lockeed would agree on a number of aircraft, and the flyaway cost. The contractor is always more lenient on cost when a line is brought back into production so the cost is the best it will ever be, and clearly not $400M. My guess is $135M to 165M.

Alan: How many model airplanes do you have hanging from your bedroom ceiling?

His assertions are mostly based on old data, way before the low production rate started. Except for the very few involved, nobody else in this world knows the specifics of the F-35 regarding its real capabilities, avionics, weapons, et al. So, to rebut faulty assertions with specific data would pretty much compromise the technology, which at this point is still the best in the world.

When you see quotes around a word like “fundamental” it begs to ask what exactly that means as well! Fundamental could mean that the loads for the wing carry through structure were miscalculated, any corrective measures in terms of increased cross section would tip over the weight estimates and turn a VTOL into a STOL? or does it just limit the payload in VTOL? or????

Combat scenarios are always interesting since some really do try to exactly model, and most importantly believe the findings for what is essentially an event driven by random events, like the visual detection of one AC from another, or the indecision time before initiating a maneuver, or…. . fill in the blank, and needless to say a different tactic might appear to be a “lobotomized pilot” if you perceive another tactic to be more fruitful.

You dont like their conclusions. Are their conclusions IMPOSSIBLE or just not in your considered opinion the MOST possible? Goes back to that issue of conflicted opinions and open discussion rather than ad hominem. :-)

It doesn’t take a child to realize that the above comments came from only one.. Guest. Worse, this Guest isn’t even an American. Why? Because no American calls their top defense official “Defence Minister”.

And NO… The Russian/Chinese are not laughing their heads off. They are worrying to death that with the proliferation of the F-35s to all the surrounding Asian nations, their 5th generation fighter program will be in deep doo doo…

The F-35s in all its version are still the best of things to come in spite of the delays and the haters to boot.

Could it be that the tooling is stored in the Sierra Army Depot in Northern California? :-) Im thinking that Michael may have a clue, but perhaps not the whole story. Tooling is only a part of a production line. You have the trained folk capable of using the tooling (who have by now moved on to new jobs), the supply train that fed parts and materials into the production line, the experienced management team that has also dispersed, etc, etc, etc.

Restarting the line will mean more than just opening up the Connex boxes and starting to build airplanes! :-)

Quack, quack, quack…. and a few ducks! :-)

Many of us that have worked with legacy fighters in the past would love to see an export version of the F-22A,
but it was not to be. The F-35 was destined to be an export fighter from the beginning to eventually replace the F-16 fleet. The Aussies have a point about the F-22 versus F-35, but the US Congress has the final say.
Looks like they will have a choice between F-35A, F-35C, and F-15S for air superiority at this point.
They already have the F-18E/F model, so if it isn’t getting the job done; then they need to look at the F-15S
in earnest.

When the program gets too “complicated” to explain to the common man, its probably just that the convolutions and contortions required to cover the corruption and malfeasance have become too flagrant. Once worked for an AF Colonel who said to always apply the “60 Minutes” principle. If you couldnt see yourself explaining your actions acceptably to Morley Safer on camera, you shouldnt do it!

If there are issues in the F-35 program that would cause Morley to raise his eyebrows (and start circling in a blood-lust feeding frenzy like a starving shark!), there might be some real problems! LOL!

What are the Differecesin Handling, Maneuverability, and Armorments for the F-22, The Air Force’s F-35A, The Corps F-35B, and the Navy’s F-35C?

On Looks, The F-22 wins Hands Down…
But then again the “Double Ugly” and “Warthog” were no Beauty Queens either

If you make a sonic “boom” you eat fuel. The shock wave alone contains quite a bit of energy, and the energy in that shock wave has to come from somewhere (and that somewhere is your fuel tank!). you can do a lot to make an A/C “slicker” in terms of skin drag, parasitic drag, and such, but.… unless you find a way to go fast and not make a shock wave.… .

Physics dont lie or change their minds and give you a pass for the sake of meeting a supercruise specification requirement!

While Im generally somewhat a fan of the Israelis.… . consider input from an “interested third party”.

I was waiting for the F35 mafia to raise the whole classification of issues and say there were no fundamental flaws. That is the ‘fundamental’ issue witht eh QLR I found. It picks every issue apart and then says, see there is no ‘one’ issue to can this aircraft. However, it never poses the or attempts to answer the question, given the number of very serious issues, and the complete unknowns about whether fixes will work or how long it will take. It never gets into if the fixes are going to so badly compromise the promises made on this aircraft will it ultimately even be something better than what we have.

If that helmet mounted system doesn’t get straightened out then the whole ‘we don’t need to maneuver’ crap is out the window.

If the B model busts its weight because too much reinforcing has to be added, we either settle for reduced airframe life and thereby considerably more cost, hope an increased inspection regime catches cracks early enough, thereby affecting readiness, or dump the fuel and unexpended ordnance every time we VTOL land, a logistical no go.

The ‘fixes; the fans like to point out on the C model’s carrier landing are hardly $ in the bank. The tweaks won’t be tested until April and even then no one was willing to sign off on it being ‘fixed’ until carrier validation which I believe is 2 more years down the road. So 13 years in development and we might find out, again, the carrier model can’t land on a carrier. Then of course its a real mess because at the point you have to gut the thing, redesign the landing system, re-test the structure and hope it works.

There’s so much more in that QLR it is ridiculous. You are right, there is no one fundamental issue pointed out, but the report clearly spells out to those that can read between the lines and are able to actually be objective that this thing is at best a badly designed prototype. It sure as hell isn’t production ready on any level, and frankly there are a huge number of issues to beg the question if it will ever meet total system reqs to justify continuing.

Destroying airbases is part of SEADs and that was actually my point, you aren’t going to go up against anything if it is done correctly.

F-35 is a disaster? Sell them the F-22 and stop the program if the plane is a turkey.

Sounds good to me. I really don’t know aircraft all that well, but the JSF looks like a disaster. Its what I been reading for a long time. Dump it.

So why do you keep flapping your yap? You guys kill me. They may have just wrapped up the last F-22 a few months ago but there’s this little thing called a supply chain, and some parts on the last F-22 were built YEARS ago.

You’re not too bright are ya?

No, I got it right.

I don’t think there are enough LOL’s left in my keyboard to type an appropriate response to that one.

Rand did a study on restarting the line and I think the cost was around $400M. Only a few months of F-35 cost overruns. Seems like a bargain. How much mod’ State would require to sell to Oz is difficult to predict and may make it cost prohibative. I think it would be a wise move to sell F-22 to Oz and have an open production line of a real air dominacne fighter while moving to Gen6 ASAP. F-35 has too little range, payload, survivability, maneuverability, speed etc. For a confrontation with a near peer.

Not only that the F-35 incorporates alien technologies dug up from a UFO that crashed in the desert of Nevada that cannot be revealed to anybody but a select few.

says the American pretending to be an Australian LOL

According to the F-35 fan boys you are wrong. Simply not possible. But then to losers everything is impossible.

Yea just name one.

Name a single part that American can no longer manufacture for the F-22.

Yet again you have been caught telling lies.

Again, some anonymous engineer claims that Israel transferred an ISRAELI (responding to Mero and Itf) plane design to China.

A claim that is less then founded considering the Chinese had extensive familiarity with delta wing designs (the J-9) and could have had plenty of help from the Russians (the MiG Ye-8). In any case, it is a native Israeli design and has nothing to do with selling “U.S. secrets to China”.

Again, the best argument against this is the Phalcon program. One of Israel’s biggest export deals of a natively designed system was canceled just to not piss off the U.S. and disturb the balance in the region.

Lets see now. .. . the Lavi had a Pratt & Whitney 1120 engine, a Lear-Siegler Flight Control System (capable of handling the dynamically unstable airframe, just like the F-16 but moreso), a Hughes HUD, AirResearch ECS, Sunstrand CSD/Generator, AirResearch EPU, Garret APU, and the wings and fins were designed (and the first few shipsets produced by) none other than Grumman Aerospace.

Yep, that sounds like a totally domestic Israeli design to me! :-)

Dont get me wrong, the Israeli’s are the best friends we have in the entire Mid East, and I admire them greatly for their military exploits, but…. . they are a bit too free with US equipment and designs from time to time for my tastes.

Typical for you, resorting to ad hominem. Argument’s out of gas, huh? Have a good one, dude.

And what about all the corruption, budget over-runs and dirty tricks that have become part of how the program got to where it is? I know about the sunk cost fallacy, but I’ve never heard of a sunk corruption fallacy.

The F-22 wing carry-through bulkhead perhaps? (The F-22 wing carry-through bulkhead is fabricated from the largest titanium forging, by surface area, to date (96 ft2, 6560 lb).)

Go back and play with IT stuff where at least you can claim that you know nothing about time lags in data transmission! LOL!

But you cant turn back history, just perhaps if you identify the culprits there might be some punishment attached. If Darlene Druyan can go to jail, anybody who deserves it can! :-)

Right, and the deserving ones should get what’s coming to them. But what if their actions have turned the program into an unsalvageable wreck, or at very least made it into political poison?

Does he have all of the technical facts to make judgement? I don’t know I’m just posing the question, on what information he has that he can make the assercians that he is making.

Again, what information do you have to support your position? Late and over budget are all of our weapons lately.

That was a very good post. You are absolutely correct.

F23 is proof the best design is often not selected.

I think Congress passed a resolution permitting export of the F22. Make an extended range derivative, and include the technical know how of our allies to reduce the F22 problems. Japan, South Korea, UK, Canada, Australia should be the first to participate. We can add other good allies later, too many partners all at once is difficult to manage.

There’s nothing wrong with Ada!

I’d say sell some F-22’s to our allies minus all the US hardware, Engines, software and stealth technology. Just give them an export, downgraded version of the stealthy F-22 without the Stealth technology. They are only getting the export, downgraded airframe of the F-22. Let our allies put all their favorite Hardware, software, armament, engines and systems into their Export F-22 and keep the Stealthy F-22 in US hands. At the Same time, Kill the F-35 and Revamp the F-15 eagle to F-15K or F-15 Silent Eagle version. At the same time, Sell off older F-16s to our smaller allies and Start production of the Block 60 F-16 and Ramp up production of the F-18 E/F Super Hornet. If I had my way and we couldn’t revamp production of the F-15 & F-16. I would have the US Air Force move to a F-18 E/F Super Hornet fleet in the same way they did in the 1960’s and 1970’s with the F-4 Phantom II.

I agree … nothing wrong with using Ada for real-time mission-critical systems! Not to say that you can’t use C or C++ effectively for those applications, but when you do you definitely need to be very careful and in fact build for yourself some of the safeguards that Ada provide out-of-the-box.

Sell em. They are good allies.

You’re ignorant of what a real aircraft designer can do, and with that attitude, you’ll stay ignorant. It won’t be long and all of the real airplane designers will be dead, and most of their knowledge along with them. Here’s something to think about, though. When NASA got their SR-71 research aircraft, they wanted a 2 seat version to use as a trainer. They had one of their people design a 2nd canopy for the backseat and found that with the 2nd canopy, not only would the airplane no longer go Mach 3+, it would not go supersonic at all. They had to get someone who had been part of the original design team to lay out the 2nd canopy so it wouldn’t totally f up the airplane. So go use your physics to figure that one out, hot shot.

Ignorance can be cured, so I guess there’s hope even for me! you can see, the NASA mod put in a big hump so that the backseater could actually see the runway in a landing AOA. Have to imagine that would upset pitch stability at speed along with lots of drag from trying to trim it out. I could see issues with getting up to speed. May have to dig out the project engineers number, call and see if she’s sorted it out. Shoot, been so long since I chatted with her that she’s probably moved on.I’m a long way from being a hot shot, but thanks for saying so! :-)Sent from my iPhone

Actually I’d strongly suspect that the aero was a blend of the Kafir (canard layout and all) with the relaxed static stability of the F-16.Sent from my iPhone

Why is it that so many responders have such limited English language spelling and grammar capabilities? If you idiots expect any one to take you (your comments) seriously, learn to communicate properly in English.

Uh, that’s the canopy that worked. Ignorance can be fixed, but not the way you’re going about things.

The only people that take Goon and Kopp seriously are: -
1) Themselves as classic narcissists
2) 15-year old Cadet Wannabe’s until they learn better

Defence takes APA seriously.….…..puh-lease! Hahaha

They are the source of a good laugh (occasionally) and pure derision (most often)

Santa Claus is in town , he’s got gifts for every clown. Keep your dung heap planes man! we will have our own version very soon and we ‘ll take down those F*CK-22/35/35/16 like flies.

When they refer to no fundamental flaws I presume they are referring to “show-stopping” issues that cannot be overcome and would prevent the F-35 from doing what it’s supposed to do. I suppose one can interpret that word in several ways.

The issue with that Pacific combat scenario I mentioned is that it highlighted APA’s habit of exaggeration and twisting the facts to pitch their own F-22/F-111 plan. Instead of trying to argue how the F-22 would be a better choice, they insist it’s the only choice, argue that the F-35 and Super Hornet are deathtraps, and will gladly lie to do so.

To be fair, APA does make some good points. We really should have continued with the F-22 program and a Navy equivalent would have been nice (although their idea of navalizing the F-22 was pure fantasy), a dedicated successor to the long-ranged F-111 would also have been nice to have. But even I doubt we could have afforded all of those things.

I think this is a made up article. There is absolutely no desire expressed within Australian defence circles for the F-22, when newly elected, the Labor Government wanted the F-22 as their Left Wing principles see the F-22 purely as a defensive weapon, unlike the F-35 which they still see as a offensive weapon system. The purchase of the F-22 would see its technology quickly transferred to China and India, since very large numbers of both countries nationals are public servants employed within Defence and its associates. Rather than either the 22 or the 35, a better combination which other countries are looking at are a F-18F and Euro Typhoon Trache 3 combination. Given strike; air defence/tactical air support. At a far lessor cost!Yours, G.Mackinlay, NSW, Australia

How many times will this absurd idea of the F-15E as an alternative to the F-35 come up. The F-15 requires a lot time to build and maintain and has the price tag to match. We need something that can be built in bulk to replace our F-16s and F/A-18s. We need the new “lo” in the “hi-lo” mix.

@ Yo Mate

YES… The Russian/Chinese are laughing their heads off. Even they are worrying to death that with the proliferation of the F-35s, the JSF’s are too incapable of doing the job.

The F-35s in all its version are still not the best of things to come with the delays, cost overruns etc.

Yes there are many barriers to overcome for a very ambitious program, but are they impossible to fix? It doesn’t seem that way. Considering the advances in helmet mounted sights dating all the way back the ‘80s I don’t see why the helmet issue can’t be corrected.

Weight for all three variants has long been my greatest concern as it’s a very important factor in many different areas of performance. It seems that everybody involved has been too lax in preventing weight growth throughout the years. Did they underestimate? Did they need to use more steel and titanium components (as opposed to composite)? Did changed requirements necessitate a higher weight? Quite frankly I have no idea, but I really wish they could trim off some pounds.

On one positive note however, fixes for the F-35B are said to have trimmed off some 270 pounds according to InsideDefense.

I believe carrier validation (actually landing on a real carrier) is still planned for 2013. But again let me remind you that the F-35C did not have its first flight until 2010. As for the glacial pace of development, this has unfortunately become the norm for all fighter programs including many European ones. Cancelling the F-35 and starting a new program (or multiple new programs) isn’t going to fix that.

Yep, the lack of external pylons and stores really hurts. I mean only being able to reach M1.7 without afterburners?

The F-35 is no F-22 but I believe somebody did say it can reach M1.05 in cruise, not supercruise by most standards but still better than what a F-16 or F/A-18 can do, which are the aircraft the F-35 is supposed to be able to match or exceed in terms of aerodynamic performance.

The F-22 and F-23 were both outstanding designs and I would have loved to seen the F-23 enter production in some form. However it was never vastly superior to the F-22 in any aspect. In all likelihood it would have suffered with many of the same problems the F-22 had (and still has) to overcome.

Uh, we’ve got a lot of spending in the US that can be cut without harming national security; if someone will get serious about cleaning the system up we’ll have some money available.….

William C.

The F-15 does not require a lot time to build and maintain and the price tag is affordable .I disagree, the F-15 is not a maintenance intensive aircraft, the JSF will be expensive to maintain and operate which means the air crews can’t fly very much because they will get less training and not enough flying hours, it take about 30 or 50 hours of maintenance for every one hour of flight time. Remember stealth materials are so sensitive that cannot stay in the rain and dust, the same goes for Raptor too. Nothing wrong with the F-15. So thats why I’ve mentioned of having mixed force of new built Eagles and Raptors would present a potent combination of flexibility and capability and reducing maintenance man hours for the ground crew to work on stealth aircraft.

William C.

How many times that America and the US Allies don’t need too much low capability fighters in increased numbers. The reason why I’m concerned is that small fighters don’t deliver the hefty punch because the weapons load is very limited, if the JSF did carry weapons externally it will sacrifice stealth (been seen by enemy radars, advanced SAMS and AAAs on the ground and enemy fighters in the air ).

William C.

Single engine is a terrible idea that makes the aircraft more vulnerable to engine failure that can’t get back home safely etc, the internal fuel for the JSF is too inefficient which means their range is too short and would require significant air-tanker support to be able to get them to a combat radius 1,000+ miles to striike a target. The JSF’s acceleration is inferior — its only Mach 1.6 placing it at a significant disadvantage to Mach 2.4 aircraft such as the supercruising Sukhoi. The wing and engine intake geometry on the JSF is optimised for subsonic flight — so a more powerful engine cannot fix the problem even if one would fit in the small JSF airframe. The JSF carries only “four” air-air missiles (AAM) for Beyond Visual Range (BVR) self defence combat. We’re going back to the Vietnam War era the story traces the history of heavy losses with the F-105 Thunderchief.

Enough with the F22. It really isn’t all that great to begin with, it needs huge avionics updates and we won’t ever sell it to anyone because they might figure out how deficient it really is. The future is the F35, get used to it.

This article is totally without merit and a dis-service to honesty.

l would not trust the communist Australia government with the F22, they are in bed with China.

You completely miss my point, you take each problem in turn like they do in the QLR. Think about it in terms of the whole program. 10+ years into the program and someone didn’t think to check the helmet system before first flight? Never mind system integration how about just shaking the damn thing on someone’s head? We might’ve noticed they couldn’t read any of the damn information.

I don’t subscribe to Inside Defense but as of two weeks ago the weight margin for the B was 235 lbs. Bottom line is there is no way the B model is going to finish testing and development and not bust the VLBB. Fuel dump has to be redone, gonna add weight and impact LO negatively. There’s a lot of flight testing to go and frankly, all of the important hard stuff. The flight testing they’ve done to date is the easy stuff. No high angle of attack, no air to air combat, no weapon release, they’ve done the equivalent of drive around the block and buy ice cream at the corner store which has led to almost 800 design change requests.

Sorry, no points for the dev time frame comparing to the Typhoon or Rafale. Typhoon was a pig more because of politics than engineering and Rafale was a matter of funding and not engineering.

Cancelling a bad program to start a new one makes plenty of sense if you learn from the bad one and don’t repeat mistakes. This talk about the F35 is the same thing the USMC whined about with the EFV. The same sniveling surrounding the FCS from the Army. Spare me, we most certainly could buy some advanced legacy aircraft to fill in for 10 years while we start over. Don’t tell me we couldn’t design a gen 5 plane in 10 years if we skipped this multi service, mutli role, modular BS that we now know is a bad idea on land, sea and now air.


But it doesn’t work that way. The requirements and contract for the helmet mounted display were issued long after the start of the JSF program. They tested it when the subcontractor had a functioning prototype ready, it was not there when the X-35 demonstrators were flying, nor was it ready when the first F-35A took the sky. The avionics for the F-35 are a work in progress like many of the fighter’s systems. Many of the avionics are new and are far more than variants of operation systems like JHMCS.

Yes the fuel dump system needs modification but there is no certainty to your claims that it will negatively impact weight or RCS. The slow pace of test flights is the norm and will remain that way unless everybody involved is willing to spend more and take more risks. They’ve certainly done more than just fly around in circles too.

The Typhoon only now has a full air-to-ground capability, only now is getting an AESA radar, is not nearly as stealthy as the F-35, has no carrier or STOVL variant and had it’s own share of engineering troubles. These troubles sometimes grounded it for months at a time and the British decided that earlier models were too costly to upgrade and thus will be retired many years early. It’s a program that has easily been just as troubled as the F-22.

The Rafale (like the F-22) did suffer from funding issues, but it is again a far less ambitious program than the F-35.

It doesn’t make sense when policy-makers don’t pay attention to lessons learned and no serious alternatives are on the table. The Marines still don’t have a replacement for the ancient AAVP-7A1, the Army hasn’t gotten any new armored vehicles in the past decade other than Strykers and MRAPs which were both “off-the-shelf” designs for immediate requirements. GCV seems on course to become a confused mess. Without any sort of solid plan that we (and partner nations) will follow, canceling the F-35 would be shooting ourselves in the foot.

Yes, in ten years we could have a new 5th generation fighter, but could we another design for the Navy and another for the Marines? Would those in Washington really be willing to pay for that? Even in the worst case scenario the F-35 will have reached IOC before 2022 anyway.

It’s amusing how itfunk/oblat wants to kill the F-22 when it’s in production and only supports restarting production when it provides a reason to kill the F-35 (but not for the Navy or Marines).

Just admit that you don’t want flying any new fighters.

Sorry that should say the F-35 was never intended to be a dedicated air-superiority fighter. The F-15 certainly was.

The F-15 is a great aircraft and has the record to prove it. Yet why do you think the LWF (F-16) program emerged? Because the USAF couldn’t get as many F-15s as it would have liked. While the F-15 got its own multi-role variant with the very capable F-15E, the F-16 fleet still does the majority of strike, SEAD, and CAS missions.

It takes more materials to make and in those terms a modernized F-15 is going to be more costly than any F-16 or F-35. The latest export models cost $100 million or so each and this is with a production line that has been around for many years and built over a thousand aircraft.

Stealth materials have come a long way from the F-117A, it won’t get ruined by rain or dust.

If the helmet doesn’t work, the plane is screwed. The we don’t need to maneuver is out the window, that is a huge problem.

William, you didn’t even bother to read and pay attention to the QLR. Read page 10, last damn comment on mods for the fuel dump, the fixes tried to date were unsuccessful. Read the damn report.

I trust the Australian. They were our friends. Sell them everything we got and produce a newer modern one.

William C. Although stealth materials have come a long way from the F-117A, it will get ruined by rain or dust and takes 30 or 50 hours of maintenance for every one hour of flight time according to Azcat. Yes the F-15 was expensive at the time which was why the LWF (F-16) program had emerged, but now its believed the costs for the F-15 have come down later.

Again the JSF is still extremely expensive than the F-15.

The other single engined fighters (the A-7 Corsair II, the F-8 Crusader, the F-106 Delta Dart, etc)
the USAF & USN had operated over the years. They were great aircraft of its time, although the F-16s are still around, but single engine has now had its day. Most countries need two engines for overwater operations, for maritime strike operations, for safety (so they can come home safely with one engine going when the other one has failed) and for long range flights.

Well single engine never seems to be a problem only for small NATO European and some Asian countries, is because their range are not as important and they are surrounded by the small vast land areas which are ideal for short range fighters with either single or two engines.

William C.

Yes the F-35 has a very large fuel load for an aircraft of its size, but its fuel flow is too inefficient.

Yes the F-35 has shown it performed acceleration in test trials. But I rather doubt Mach 1.6 is still to way too slow and its not all that it can do. There is obvious factor limiting it to that specific number, and it’s still not only rated to release weapons up to that speed. To me you still need Mach 2+ for survivability.

“Later blocks will introduce the capability to carry six internal air-to-air missiles”. Thats still limited, you need to carry more than that around 8, 10 or 12 AAMs to do the job for air-to-air combat instead of six missiles.

Hence the reason why the US or most US Allies should have aircraft like the F-15 and F-22 to lead the way in clearing the skies. Again as said before it presents a potent combination of flexibility and capability and reducing maintenance man hours for the ground crew to work on stealth aircraft.

William C.

Hence why the US and the Allies should have aircraft like the stingless F/A-18 Super Dog & the lemon F-35 JSF to lead the way in clearing the skies that is inferior to the Sukhoi family of aircraft and advanced SAMs? Explain.

Two (likely very minor) modifications were tested and rejected, that doesn’t mean they’ve hit a brick wall. If they managed to get it right on the F-22, they can do it with the F-35.

Considering advances in this area over the past decades I fully believe the issues encountered can be fixed. It is a vital component, but the worst case scenario would be we use that interim helmet (which should have capabilities similar to JHMCS) until somebody can deliver a helmet with all of the planned features. It’s a technology that will be useful on a lot of other platforms too.

William C.

I have to admit the JSF has certainly claimed to be the biggest failed project of all time, the kinks will be unfixable and will continue to suffer with the teething problems when the aircraft comes into operational service in 2018 or later. It will be completely useless and will not be able up to do the job which is why its the most hated aircraft in the world and can’t be trusted.

I’m sorry to say William, the JSF has great systems, but in a lot respects its not the best, it has a inferior airframe that can’t turn, can’t climb, can’t run, its maintenance intensive with heavy costs etc. The turkey needs to be scrapped.

Again with their greater stealth, the F-22 is the aircraft of choice to penetrate particularly high threat zone areas. On the ‘friendly’ side of the forward-edge of the battle area — for e.g. cruise missile defence, defending high value assets, and if the rules of engagement dictate close in engagement the F-15 will be a better choice.

What? No mention of the fact if it requires a fuel mast that will impact the LO characteristics of all variants?

Lets talk about the fire hazard of the fuel dump and how it can suck fuel into the IPP creating a fire hazard. That dove tails nicely into what an overwhelming piece of crap the IPP is turning out to be.

The IPP is supposed to last 2200 hours per specs. They had to swap out 16 of them last year. 8 in one twelve week period. It takes 48 hours working around the clock to swap one out ( forward austere operations my butt). Instead of the 2200 hours, they were getting 13 hours as of JUL 31, 2011.

Clearly you didn’t read the QLR because the interim helmet does not meet the standard for the JHMCS. In addition the night vision capability of the helmet system isn’t even as good as the NVGs pilots currently use and to quote the QLR “it is not expected to meet legacy acuity”. I’d like to know how this will ever work for any sort of CAS at all.

Why don’t you try actually reading the QLR William before you get on here and try and defend this heap.

@ Angus Johnson

Enough with the turkey F-35. It really hasn’t been that great to begin with at the start during its development back in the early 1990s, the future is not the F-35, get used to it. The F-35 is the biggest failure of all time. I reckon it will be far better for the F-22 to be upgraded with the touch screen cockpit displays and it sell the aircraft to anyone because they might figure out how deficient it really is. Export ban for the Raptor is ludicrous and selling the inferior and useless F-35 to the Allies is rubbish with all the terrible reasons and its ruining the friendship to the Allies.

Did ya see? The USAF has officially slipped the IOC off the right hand margin into “date uncertain” land.

A baby born on the day the JSF RFP went out will be old enough to have become a commissioned officer and pilot in the Air Force before this piggy will be able to drop a bomb in anger. Does that sound reasonable/ acceptable to you?


Of course, we (Aussies) trust you too and we’re friends with you too. Sell us mixed fleet of F-15s and F-22s for a potent combination of flexibility and capability. We don’t need small fighters with short range, limited weapons payload and inferior turkey F-35 JSF’s and stingless F/A-18 Super Dogs.

How about emailing to Brad Jones Director, F-15 US Air Force Development Programs, Roger Besancenez Boeing Vice President, F-15 Program or Richard ‘Rick’ Banholzer, Boeing’s Director of Business Development for Air Force Fighters and Weapons about the idea of developing a new proposed single-seat F-15 as well as the F-15E two-seaters as combat capable trainers as an export variants for new customers like Australia.


To replace the 71 F/A-18A/B “Classic” Hornets:

50 F-22A Raptors for Air Superiority role

50 F-15E/F Strike Eagle single-seat / two-seat variants for Air Superiority, ground attack, maritime strike and reconnaissance role.

To develop the new single-seat F-15 based on the latest advancements in two-seat F-15E, the designation of the model should be called for e.g. F-15F or whatever Boeing can come up with any export designation.

Also if possible upgrade the new Eagles with thrust vectoring engines and supercrusing mode (to save fuel, and enhances both engagements of, and escape from, known threats).


A better combination which we (Australians) are should be looking at to replace the 71 F/A-18A/B Hornets are the mix fleet of advanced F-15 and F-22 combination. We don’t need small fighters with short range and limited weapons payload.

I don’t think this is a made up article. I reckon there should be a desire expressed within Australian defence circles for the F-22, to me you can’t blame the APA for taking what they believe is the best position for their Government and RAAF. I completely agree with them not the Government and Defence Department.


The Typhoon is a fantastic aircraft, it will compete with the Su-35BM/Su-35–1 in terms of close combat agility and dash speed, but the down side is the Typhoon doesn’t have the range and hefty punch and does not have a decisive advantage in systems and sensors and cannot match the radar range of the Irbis E, and will not match a supercruise engine equipped Flanker.

The F/A-18E/F Super Dog (Super Hornet) Block II with its much vaunted APG-79 AESA radar. The Su-35BM/Su-35–1 outperforms it on all cardinal parameters, including radar range, but excluding the somewhat academic measure of clean radar signature – academic since in combat external stores must be carried by both fighters. Which is why the F/A-18E/F has a missing sting in its tail.

William C.

F-35 JSF will be outclassed in all cardinal performance parameters, with the exception of radar signature when the JSF is flown clean with internal stores only. That advantage may also be entirely academic if the Flanker is networked with low frequency band radar to cue it to the JSF. It is also not entirely clear whether the radar signature of the export variants of the JSF will be low enough to deny lock-on by the powerful Irbis E at useful missile ranges.

We don’t need the lemon JSF. If it was up to me William I’ll scrap the failed project for good and look for another alternatives instead, which the US should be doing too as a Plan B or C. You can’t just sit and wait to see the turkey progress because it’ll take years to fix the aircraft and again it’ll suffer more teething problems in operational service.

William C.

I still prefer a mix fleet of advanced F-15s and F-22 for the RAAF, for my country (Australia) I want the small nation to have high capability fighters with a hefty firepower, long range, bigger weapons payload, better acceleration, agility, two engines and more powerful fire control radar and sensors. Because we are comfortable with a twin engine aircraft with long range when we still live on the same island surrounded by the same vast oceans and with the same limited internal operational basing infrastructure.

William C.

The F-35 JSF will be outclassed in all cardinal performance parameters, with the exception of radar signature when the JSF is flown clean with internal stores only. That advantage may also be entirely academic if the Flanker is networked with low frequency band radar to cue it to the JSF. It is also not entirely clear whether the radar signature of the export variants of the JSF will be low enough to deny lock-on by the powerful Irbis E at useful missile ranges.

IF a fuel mast was implemented. Thus it’s unlikely to be the chosen solution. If you read the QLR report yourself you’d notice the “path forward is unknown at this time” part.

The IPP is a complicated piece of equipment but a necessary one due to the F-35’s high power requirements and electrical configuration. If Hamilton Sundstrand can’t hack it than somebody else can, and I rather doubt they want to lose that contract.

The interim helmet I speak of is the one for which Lockheed contracted BAE for to develop rapidly in case the VSI helmet isn’t ready on time. This does have an optional weapon cuing system according to BAE. Theoretically BAE could become the primary contractor for development of a new helmet in case VSI can’t sort things out.

As I’ve said there are real, serious problems to overcome. Yet they certainly aren’t impossible to fix. Yes there are more problems than anybody would like but you’re deluding yourself if you think the F-14, F-15, F-16, F/A-18 and every other modern fighter had a trouble-free development. The additional problems the F-35 faces reflect the goal of having three such variants with their own requirements.


We (Aussie) trust you too. We are friends to you too. Sell us mix fleet of advanced F-15s and F-22s as a perfect replacement for 71 F/A-18A/B “Classic” Hornets. Both of those aircraft will provide Australia a potent combination of flexibility and capability. I don’t need small fighters with short range and limited weapons payload.

Email to Brad Jones Director, F-15 US Air Force Development Programs, Roger Besancenez Boeing Vice President, F-15 Program or Richard ‘Rick’ Banholzer, Boeing’s Director of Business Development for Air Force Fighters and Weapons about developing a new proposed single-seat F-15 based on the latest advancements in F-15E, (in a similar concept to the Su-35S Super Flanker-E ) as well as the two-seat F-15E variants which can be sold to Australia as a combat capable trainers.

The designation for the new single-seat variant for e.g. should be called F-15F or any export designation Boeing can figure out.

Everyone of the legacy fighters you quote were operational in less than ten years. The every program has issues is a tired excuse for a criminally negligent performing program.

If you read what I posted and read between the lines I highly doubt they would have mentioned a fuel mast unless that was the obvious solution they see. Plus saying they don’t know what to do is hardly an overwhelming validation of the system.

The IPP is a piece of crap, period.

The back up helmet the contracted for uses NVGs and will not be connected to the DAS system, it is not a replacement and it does not comply with the reqs.

10 + years into a program, $38 billion and we are recommending slowing production ( we should stop all LRIP immediately), and separating the three models into individual development because the aircraft that was supposed to save us $ in commonality can’t be developed commonly.

Depending on outcomes of some pretty important systems that can’t be validated for 2 to 3 years there could be significant redesigns called for. The high end flight testing won’t be done for 4 years and the QLR says “the majority of discovery remains”. We won’t have those answers for 4 years and that will likely mean more delays. it will be 20 years before this tub of guts is operational and still you cling to it.

Angus Johnson

Enough with the turkey F-35. It really isn’t all that great with the development, the F-22 can be upgraded with huge avionics and should sell the F-22 to the US Allies because they might figure out how deficient it really is. The future is not the lemon F-35, get used to it. Remove the ludicrous export ban for the F-22.


This is not a made up article. There should be a desire expressed within Australian defence circles for the F-22. A better combination which we should be looking at are advanced F-15s and F-22s, instead of the small fighters with short range.

The Eurofighter Typhoon is a fantastic aircraft, it will compete with the Su-35BM/Su-35–1 in terms of close combat agility and dash speed, buton the down side it does not have a decisive advantage in systems and sensors and cannot match the radar range of the Irbis E, and will not match a supercruise engine equipped Flanker.

The F/A-18E/F Super Dog (Super Hornet) Block II with its much vaunted APG-79 AESA radar. The Su-35BM/Su-35–1 outperforms it on all cardinal parameters, including radar range, but excluding the somewhat academic measure of clean radar signature – academic since in combat external stores must be carried by both fighters. It has a missing sting in its tail.

You can’t blame the APA for taking what they believe is the best position for their Government and RAAF. Because I completely agree with the APA team not the Government and Defence Department.

Australia voted in a far left government,they have cut defence to the bone,it,s all a big dream, we have about 21 out of 71 airworthy F/A18 A/B,s. Australian communist government will not buy new F 15 or F 22,s,they waist the money on wind farms,muslim boat people,and 56 billion dollards on internet cable.

As far as APA is concerned, I don’t agree with all their work, BUT have a look at their predictions years ago for the F-35 JSF, they copped hell over it;Yet have a look now and all their predictions are close to the mark or have come true. As for their F111 / F22 combo have a look at Red Flag a couple years ago,when they flew similar missions as outlined by APA. The results were not even reported in Australia, because of the embarrassment to the Gov’t and the Defence Dept on how well the F111’s performed. After they stated it was too old etc, both aircraft could do their missions above Mach 1 when needed, Pigs low and Raptors high. Don’t forget the supersonic bomb bay release for the Raptors was tested on a RAAF F111. Maybe this year they will actually trial a weapon release on the F35, surely this must be the only fighter aircraft ever to go to USAF training units were no weapons have ever been trialled before hand !!!!

What predictions? They are masters of hind-sight. Most of their work currently seems to be these unsupported claims related to the supposed lack of stealth and agility of the aircraft.

Note how in their combat scenarios Russian equipment always does what the brochure promises but this is never the case for American aircraft unless they are F-22s or non-existent modernized F-111s.

One of my favorite oddities of theirs is the praise they gave the Super Hornet back when it was entering USN service and one of them got a ride in the back seat of an F model. Yet as soon as it was decided to replace Australian F-111s with Super Hornets they turned on the aircraft like wild dogs. It goes beyond the realm of legitimate criticism and concern. Instead they just portray the aircraft which were selected over their vision for the RAAF as deathtraps. Yet their ideal scenario of Australian F-22s and modernized F-111s was simply never going to happen. The F-111 provided many years of good service but by the time they were retired they were hideously expensive to operate.

One of the things I do agree with them on is that a true successor to the F-111 would be good to have. But the money isn’t there, at least until we replace those aging fighters which the F-35 and F-22 are supposed to replace.

Yes they were operational in less than 10 years. But the designers were able to be more aggressive in regards to test flights, specifications didn’t change, and none of these programs were attempting to develop a three-in-one fighter. Besides for the F/A-18 none of these aircraft were introduced with significant multi-role capabilities anyway. Plenty of people were calling for the scalp of the F-14 at the time too, and to an extent the Tomcat was never able to achieve it’s full potential due to matters of funding.

Again, such long development times have unfortunately become the norm and this isn’t going to change if you cancel the F-35 and start two or three replacement programs. Those programs would benefit from work done on the F-35 thus far, but we wouldn’t be able to match the timelines of the F-15 or F-16.

I don’t have any personal experience with the IPP, but as I said, if Hamilton Sundstrand can’t hack it, somebody else ought to be able to. This isn’t impossible stuff.

BAE’s helmet is the interim solution and yes it doesn’t meet the requirements for the DAS and full set of capabilities intended for the F-35. It’s in case the VSI helmet isn’t ready on time for F-35 introduction and training purposes, not a true alternative.

Yes there are many problems that must be overcome, but at the core is a design with its share of good qualities that can work and perform the roles it was designed for. We got ourselves into this situation and we’d be better off seeing the F-35 through. The alternative you speak of is cancelling it in the hopes that Congress would allow two or three successor programs, not constantly meddle with them as they did the F-22, and not slash production numbers as they are prone to doing. Considering their record I think we ought to take our chances with the F-35.

Kopp is a definitely a rude hysterical goon with warped notions of his own ‘expertise’, from what I’ve seen. Why did parliament even give him and APA time? How much lobbying and *cough cough* ‘glad-handing’ to get this? Which defence major I wonder?

They could go back to hogging it out of a billet like they did early in the program. It costs more, but works fine.

It might hit 1.7 falling out of the sky, but not in level flight carrying anything.

So.….we fix the problem by adding cost to a fighter that was stood down from production because of cost? I’d suspect that the logic even escapes you, but you HAD to disagree with my point! LoL! Nice thought though, troll! :-)Sent from my iPhone

“Guest” is certainly busy putting down the F-35 with all these numerous posts. Angus is right. Better get used to the F-35 because your protest effort isn’t going to change a thing. After all, the F-35 is still the best 5th generation fighter out there that is available for export. The F-22 is simply NOT available. IF Australia can’t stand it, then build your own damn jet… or worse yet, buy the Russian T-50 or Chinese J-20… What are you afraid of? Just go ahead and buy those “promising” Russian/Chinese jets and see how painful it will be fore the future of Australia’s air force.

Is The truth that america no longer trusts its friends and thats why the F22 was never offered for export ? Or is the truth that the F22 really isnt really that clever and the best way way to keep that a secret is not to let any one else fly them ? (they do look neat at airshows though!)

Keep the F-15 with current technological up-grades, With a US pilot strapped in it, it’s still the best fighter in the world. That way we can take care of the active and retired soldiers, marines, sailors and airman without cutting their pay and retirement bennifits until our current budget crisis is no longer an issue. We have enough F-22s for a limited high tech war now. Build the super fighters when cutting bennifits to real people is no longer on the table.

Oh l wouldn’t worry too much William, the DoD is clearly all in so even though it makes me shudder we are going to buy the F35. Barring some huge show stopping issue, they will just dump $ into it and muscle through the screw ups. I do forsee procurement is going to have be drawn way out to find the $ though, and that development is going to fall far behind. It will take 20 years to get the sow operational.

Wow! With you representing the right of the country, I finally feel that Australia is in safe hands…

What an imbecile.

Australia has been involved in every American war since WWII. America has not been involved in any of Australia’s wars in that time — even though we requested some pretty minor assistance in helping to peace keep in East Timor, and were rejected.

You’re an ignorant fool.

So perhaps it is America who should “start taking responsibility for their own actions”.

Hi David

Take a look on my comment about an idea of having a mixed force of Eagles and Raptors and also mentioning to develop a new single seat F-15 based on the two-seat F-15E airframe. Just scroll down until you find it. See what you reckon.

Yeah. So true.

I mean it was only the Labor Party that put in place policy to beef up Australian forces, in particular the navy, to counter the threat posed by China’s military build-up. This was met with much consternation in Beijing and led to an official complaint being lodged with the Australian ambassador.

But hey, why let the facts get in the way of your stupid, small minded ignorance? We’ll keep sending Australians to die in American wars while retards like you sit behind their keyboards and contribute exactly zero.


Sorry folks that I put the same comment. Just don’t read the same one as below.

Is that the same defence cuts that have lead to an increase in the defence budget, and purchase of 12 new submarines, two heavy landing ships, and an Air Warfare Destroyer?

The cuts came from non-essential (ie. non-combat) defence spending to be re-routed into combat capabilities. This is the same “Far Left” government that has recommitted Australian troops to Afghanistan to beyond the orgiginal 2014 deadline.

The quality of comment on this forum is extremely low. To many kids with model airplanes and computers…

I think that you don’t look at the situation correctly. Everybody, including usa, is suffering from espionage time to time. If Russia had been able to access some of the documents of Manhattan project (they saved something like more than 10 years of research) then nothing is safe.

Simple math tell that the number of leaks is proportional to the number of informed people. The less people know about it, the less it is probable to leak. But since it may not be a good idea to tell your allies that you don’t want them to access this technology to be more protected against leak, to me it look more politically correct to said that it’s not for sale.

In that perspective, there is nothing insane about the usa keeping the f-22 for them, just like they did for the blackbird. The f-22 definitely have greater cyber-waraf capability than the f-35; sometimes I fear that they decided to keep too much for them and too less for their allied. If the f-35 is a viable plane only because of its sensor then it worth nothing and all that technology would have been better be integrated into a more potent plane.

Tar Tar

Angus is wrong. Better not get used to the F-35 because my protest effort will hopefully going to change a thing. After all, the F-35 is still not the best 5th generation fighter out there that is available for export. Again the lemon JSF is a biggest failure in the world.

There was a consideration about Australia purchasing Russian fighters especially the Su-35S Super Flanker-E and the T-50 PAK-FA. In the past we use to build own own jet the CA-27 Avon Sabre a modified version of the F-86F Sabre variant with the Rolls Royce Avon RA-7 turbojet engine, 30mm Aden cannon and a dual hardpoint 6–3 wings.

I’m not afaid of anything. If we (Aussies) can’t stand the turkey JSF, I have my way of taking the design for e.g. the F-15 or F-22 to build and modify our own jet. The worse thing is buying the Chinese J-20… Which I’m not seriously going to buy because we are not allied with China.

Tar Tar

Definately I’ll just go ahead either taking the design (the advanced F-15 or F-22) to build and modify our own jet or buy those “promising” Russian jets andthis will be greatful for the future of Australia’s air force. Buying the wrong lemon (F-35 JSF) will see us painful that will be fore the future of Australia’s air force.

It’s comforting that we’re relying on one airframe to be the winner in an environment where the enemy is has access to increasingly sophisticated hardware.

You know, because it’s not like we’ve ever had failures in the past. We’ve never had the “one size fits all” approach ever come in over budget, over weight and basically useless as an air superiority fighter. Outstanding successes in this area include the F-105, well known as the most nimble combat fighter in history, the F-111 which had an outstanding history as the USN’s premier air defence asset, and the F-104 which had such outstanding long range performance that like all outstanding air superiority fighters, was never relegated to strike duties.

Furthermore, the latest in missile technology has always won the day over manoeuvrability. That’s why there was never a cannon retrofitted to the F-4 Phantom.

What comforts me even further is the huge field of alternative options in the admittedly impossible event that the F-35 not live up to expectation.

@ Tar Tar

What I’am afraid of? The reason I’m afraid of is because the JSF is totally incapable of facing high end threats that would not cement Australia’s regional air power lead. This has shown that the JSF has a lot of limitations and it cannot do a lot of things as aspected to show and promise that is a true fifth generation fighter. Because it does not meet all the requirements of partner nations, the aircraft will be too weak, vulnerable, it has inferior acceleration, poor manoeuvrability, short range with no loiter time and very limited weapons payload that is unsuited for bomber and cruise missile defence and unsuited for air superiority role when compared against Sukhoi family of aircraft, particularly post 2010 configurations; definitely post 2015 evolved growth variants and won’t be able to survive against the Russian/Chinese fighters.

@ Tar Tar

The turkey F-35 JSF is not lethal. For Australia, this means that for the outrageous amounts of money spent on air-to-air and air-to-ground fighting capabilities, the JSF brings absolutely nothing to the table that existing aircraft designs such as the F-111, F-15 family, F-22, A-10 and other aircraft – cannot already do and do better.

The F-35 is undergoing a substantial flight test and evaluation program, which is not progressing well and not meeting test objectives. My colleagues and myself have stated that what will be delivered (if F-35 ever arrives) will be obsolete; and that the F-35 is not affordable or sustainable. With cost increases, schedule delays, and continuing technical problems also increases the risk that the program will not be able to deliver the aircraft quantities and capabilities in the time required by the warfighter. The F-35 has failed the initial test of its stealth capability and remains behind schedule to provide the performance requirements. The cost of supporting the JSF will not be progressively refined between now and its introduction into its service. The F-35 will be extremely costly to operate than the F-111, F/A-18 or other aircraft.

@ Tar Tar

Detailed modelling, analysis and participation in highly fidelity simulator exercise which have shown and demonstrated by my colleagues that the JSF has been defeated all realistic current and future threats that Australia is likely to face by the Sukhoi family aircraft and J-20 Mighty Dragon. Part of the presentation showed a computer simulation which calculated that the F-35 would be consistently defeated by the Russian-made Su-35 fighter aircraft. The defeat calculated by the scenario also showed the loss of the F-35’s supporting airborne-early warning and air-to-air refuelling aircraft.

The F-35 lacks the aerodynamic performance to be employed effectively as an air defence interceptor/fighter, while its stealth performance in provably insufficient for defensive/offensive counter-air and ASuW strike operations against contemporary regional capabilities. In the most fundamental sense the argument is moot, as the F-35 is incapable of making any useful contribution to the defence of Australia’s sea-air gap.

America kept the Blackbird to itself because nobody else had a need for it.…

@ Tar Tar

The technology in the Su-35 will also see its way into growth upgrades of other Su-27/30-fighter variants used by countries like Indonesia, Malaysia, India and Vietnam. Chinese variants of these aircraft should also see similar growth capability in the coming years. No matter what upgrade to this very remarkable warplane, the advanced Flankers are extremely capable, very powerful beast, tough, and hard to shoot down that no F-35s or even small fighters with shorter range can compete with this adversary that faces biggest threat to ANY air force to go up against in combat.

The Russian-made T-50 PAK-FA low-observable fighter now in development is expected to be much more lethal in air-to-air combat against the F-35. The Su-35 and T-50 made appearances last year at the Russian aerospace industry air show known as MAKS 2011. Both aircraft will include sensors and networking which can minimise the effects of the limited low-observable qualities of the F-35. They will also have higher performance, longer range (without refuelling), more powerful radars, advanced sensors, networking, data fusion capabilities and carry more air-to-air and air-to-ground weapons than an F-35.

@ Tar Tar

The F-35 JSF’s fuselage is too thinned skinned. Lockheed Martin has done very little with major safety precautions on the Joint Strike Fighter to protect against fire. As an close air support which the F-35 is suppose to be (when it attempts to discriminate tanks, convoys, SAMs and AAAs) its totally incapable, the aircraft will be an very easy target to shoot down, because it’s such a delicate aeroplane which means the aircraft has a huge F135-PW-100 turbofan engine surrounded by fuel wrapped around entirely in the engine and to the fuselage. Very little they can do because the .22 Rifle or any form of gunfire can very easily penetrate the skin on the airframe and causes it to catch on fire like a “blow torch”. The JSF will generate more heat (in full afterburner) this will make the adversaries to detect the F-35 at BVR range, using heat seeking missiles. With safety precautions being dropped claimed that is not needed, I find that big disaster, certainly not a very survivable aircraft.

@ Tar Tar

Single engine is a very nasty risk for land and over water operations, it will cause heavy losses to the entire fleet. The decision to settle with the single engine JSF is unsuitable to cement Australia’s regional air power lead. At the time the RAAF had 116 Mirage IIIO/D fighters and lost 41 of them due to the engine failure, maintenance problems, bird strikes and pilot errors which made the entire fleet shrink to 75 aircraft. The Pratt & Whitney F135-PW-100 turbofan engine from the F-35A model will cause damage to flight deck and runways with heat build-up and exhaust impedes the aircraft’s ability to conduct missions in hot environments. The F-35 engine and integrated power package exhaust may cause excessive damage to the flight deck environment and runway surfaces that may result in operating limits or drive costly upgrades and repairs of JSF basing options. In fact single engine should be ruled out of AIR-6000 F-X (Fighter Experimental) program for F/A-18A/B Hornet replacement and the RAAF can’t afford any more losses.

@ Tar Tar

In fact single engine is not designed for over-water operations, they are designed for land based operations which are only suitable for smaller NATO countries e.g. Belgium, Netherlands, Denmark, Norway, Finland etc, Middle East, South American and small Asian country nations to operate single engine planes. Although Australia has a small air force, this country is surrounded by the vast oceans which means two engines are suitable to fulfill the RAAFs requirements.

@ Tar Tar

Thats the reason we (Aussies) are afraid that you’re selling this dud aircraft to us that is totally incapable of doing the job and you Americans are going to make the RAAF ineffective for the next 30 to 40 years and you guys are doing exactly the same thing to your own air power.

That’s probably why it was written into a 1995 world guiness world record that the blackbird only did some test flight, with a top speed of mach 5.6 and that the frame got longer (I don’t remember how much).

Oh wait, I see the bird at the intrepid museum, the plate say that it was a secret plane to make surveillance for the CIA and that the surveillance equipment was very long so it was needing such long aircraft. A pure beauty under the sunlight.

How do you want to sell a plane that doesn’t exist? ;-)

When you say that the typhoon doesn’t have the rage, it’s compared to what? According to wikipedia, typhoon have a longer range than the f-35, only that the range for the f-35 is giving with the internal fuel. Am I misreading spec sheet or does the typhoon have a greater range than the super hornet, which can have no more than 3 external 480gallons fuel tank? Or can the f-35 have any external fuel tank without affecting its stealth capability?

The typhoon can supercruise between mach 1.1 and 1.5 and have a max speed of mach 2, ways ahead of the f-35. It have been designed for supersonic operation as well. With upcoming missile like meteor, what kind of hefty punch would be missing? Since the typhoon is a plane that unlike the f-35 is flying now, the next upgrade will be already on its way, the so claimed superiority of the f-35 sensors can be only reduced. Meanwhile, all the development cost increase on the f-35 are for fixing problems after problems wile in the case of the typhoon it’s more about upgrade. Its computer already got voice recognition. That would be foolish to say that the typhoon never had any problem, it’s just that (compared to the f-35) the cost overrun have been addressed by a more realistic way, cutting less critical features, which seems to have just started in the case of the f-35 and they seems to be more extreme.

I don’t pretend that the typhoon is the best plane in the world, It is definitely a better purchase than a f-35 any day, and by assuming that the f-22 can be exported, will offer a lower-cost all day operation –otherwise all that the enemy would have to do is to make you flying for nothing and will kill you by the wallet, if you go for full fleet of f-22.

And the same would apply for Canada. Changing the whole fleet for f-35 is going to be a huge costly mistake. And I don’t want to imagine that single engine going somewhere like cfs Alert(82°30′N 62°19′W). Russia is very unlikely to invade us for that, but we will have hard time claiming our petroleum in the great north, source of future conflicts, by supposing that those plane movement are going to change anything. At least our army will be able to hide their dummy bomb…

Most of all, I am curious to see what would the typhoon look like if it had the same budget that the f-35 have. Because compared to the typhoon, the development work of the jsf seems quite inefficient.

Sorry, typo again, 11th word should be ‘range’ not ‘rage’.

F-35 is like a tester — only really corrupt and flawed system can produce and protect such a really flawed system. I guess when need arises, many traditional US equipment users will just go for PAK-FA with westernized (Israeli) avionics, and kiss US supbar powerpoint driven F-35/SH merchandise good buy:-)

:-) That, my friend, is the WHY behind sending them to jail.

Without specifics, it would be hard to imagine a universal way “out of the cesspool” for a botched program. In the case of the AF’s tanker, it turned into the embarassing series of attempted procurements. In another example, it might be the cancellation of the program. The important part is make those responsible…. responsible!

Im thinking that insured accountability will do wonders for anyone who comes along on the next procurement, equipped with high personal ambitions and shakey ethics!


Is the above what you are talking about? As I read it, this is only a study of the potential for making the F-22 a viable export product.

um, er, I have been keeping a reasonably close eye on the F-22 thing here in Australia. I haven’t seen anyone really taking it seriously. I think there is a higher percentage of people in the US who think that lizard aliens are really running the world than people over here who think we would ever get F-22s. Having said that, yes, there is some concern about the J-35, but isn’t that everywhere? And given our experience with the early F-111 situation that makes us a little more sensitive.

That’s an interesting observation, William and probably a pretty accurate call. This would seem to be a natural phenomenon and tactic of choice by some arguing and defending their personal ideological stance.

Another tactic I’ve noticed is that some in this ‘camp’ of favoring no new fighters, actually support maintaining the course on the F-35 production just to bleed out the combat aviation procurement budgets knowing full well that the Program will be suffering massive flaws and cut backs and ultimate irrelevance with no other alternatives available.

The argument sometimes used in this case would be something like: just let the Program play itself out… and if by 2018 if it is cancelled, no problem just buy Super Hornets for the USAF — they’ll suffice just fine because we have the F-22 to counter all high end threats for 40 yrs etc.. right? What they fear is a Procurement course change in FY13-FY14 and an interim 4.5 gen stopgap procurement. And in this case, it’s new build F-15E which scares them the most. (simply too much capability for any AF to have) ;)

In all reality and prudence, as much as I originally supported F-22’s export, the RAAF would be better off and wiser by selecting an enhanced and modified F-15AU (F-15SG++).

Perhaps enter into a joint development with other customers to develop specialized improvements of components and capabilities. The money it would probably take to restart the line and update an export-friendly F-22X alone, could probably buy 6-10x fully equipped F-15AU with initial spares. And by the time said F-22AU were rolling off the line to equip RAAF’s initial training squadron, it would probably be no sooner than 2020 before the first operational squadron was delivered… add 1 year for IOC. My guess would be a weapon system unit cost of $195m in FY12 dollars, plus initial spares totaling at least $25m per aircraft.

RAAF should buy one more squadron of Supers and tell Boeing to begin expanding their F-15 line because the first F-15AU will be rolling off it by 2017. Retire all legacy hornets by 2020. Call it a day.

Ada is probably the safest procedural language ever developed. I’ve worked on another huge program for LM where we used ADA quite successfully.

And get chewed up and spat out by any one of the hundreds of Flankers in the region.…

Look, I take your point and agree that reopening the F-22 line is pretty much pie-in-sky stuff. However the real problem lies in the fact that there are no long range fighters being built in the Western world anymore. The fact that America has staked the future of so many countries on such a shaky design does seem cause for concern to me. Has a “one-size-fits-all” design ever resulted in anything but a heavily compromised design in the past?

The facts can’t be gotten away from. F-35 is slow and has short range on internal tanks. Add external tanks and you lose whatever stealth advantage you (might) have had. Russian radar technology is close enough to as good as Western technology, yet the Flankers proliferating around the region have a much, much larger antenna. What’s the relevance of that? A radar’s range is a function of it’s antenna size. And god help the thing if ever gets into cannon range because it’ll be curtains…

So while I don’t agree with everything APA has to say, I do think that they’re right to have some pretty major concerns about the program and the fact that we’re staking our 40 years of our future on a completely unproven design. Staking our future on a program that has had persistent problems.

>Has a “one-size-fits-all” design ever resulted in anything but a heavily compromised design in the past?
And it seems to be still a huge problem by now. I fear that Lockheed will loose his reputation for not having called it before the program cost had exploded. I can only wonder how wonderful would the f-35 be if this problem was identified before. Only god know.

>The facts can’t be gotten away from. F-35 is slow and has short range on internal tanks.
To me it show that this joint development was designed to fulfill usa need first and before, things like having a short range might not be a problem for them as they got a very good mid-air refueling infrastructure, and they still got plenty of alternatives available. So we are literally stuck with the tradeoff.

>the Flankers proliferating around the region have a much, much larger antenna.
That exactly where (I suppose) that the f-22 have all its strength, it’s said to have many antenna integrated –which could give some mighty radiogoniometric opportunity– and its computer system is very, very powerful.

I mean that implementing all the cyber-warfare from f-22 and f-35 (is there anything enhancement?) capability into aircraft like f-15 and f-18 makes a lot of sense. You got the capability you need into a plane that is more adapted to your need. While I am not sure that the f-35 program can be scrapped completely, it would be wise to consider such alternatives.

So then what is your alternative proposal for RAAF for 1st delivery in 2016–2017? I read your post and agree with 95% of it with the exception of you blowing of the LONG RANGED CAPABLE F-15E+ concept!

Personally, I would have a heavily evolved F-16XL incremental programme already in place by now… already working on a next-gen variant to include new engines, 5.5 gen nozzles, and new lighter weight, lower RCS structures. With pure cost-effectiveness and upgradeable capabilities it would dominate all western aircraft markets today.

But pragmatically speaking, seriously what is your political beef about an F-15AU concept? What would you propose for your near-term LONG RANGE western alternative for RAAF? I’m sorry sir, but sometimes you have to go to war with the Air Force you have… and hopefully it is better than a mere Super Hornet + old hornet air force… mixed with a few unknown and billion dollar F-35s.

I’d go with an F-15SG with APG-82 radar, GE-132 engine with 2-D thrust vectoring, DEWS, outboard pylon activation for dog-fight AAM, new supersonic friendly CFT with 50% fuel capacity of existing CFT + built-in forward aspect PAWS-2+ apertures and 4 semi-recessed AAM points, enhanced IRST eye w/ improved resolution/detection and integrated air-launched AIM-162 with IIR seeker for starters. All that (minus the AIM-162) could be delivered in first deliveries by 2017 for less cost than the soon-to-be-revised actual F-35 unit costs. No, probably still not as good as a Su-30 in a knife fight, nor stealthy or super-cruise capable as an F-22… but please propose your superior alternative for an initial 2016–2017 RAAF delivery. I’d be interested to hear you out.

>The F-22 is still waiting for the F-35 to be completed so they can copy the homework and replace the ancient CPUs on the Raptor that are running Ada.
The f-22 got a very huge computing power! It got many processor, which I suspect to be a co-design or perhaps a more standard RISC cpu with an accelerator; any workload can be distributed across the aircraft, you got both resiliency and increased computing power.

Better hope for the opposite. :-)

There is SPARK, which is derived from Ada (no generics, no recursivity, no …). How happy I could be if the educational system would teach Ada instead of this java crap.

F22 for Aus & Japan, = a good thing!

Fire the supposed think tank and sell the J.S.F. to our Allies. After all that’s why it WAS DEVELOPED!!!!

I’ve been saying this for quite sometime. If they want an export version of the F-22, use the YF-22’s design and airframe, but with actual F-22 AESA radar and avionics for a mass-produced export. The sucker is stealthy, but the F-22A is stealthier. At least they wil have the same capabilities and avionics if not equal RCS.

Hello Mars Patrol

The F-15AU and F-22AU concepts will certainly provide a potent combination of flexibility and capability to suit Australia’s “long range” requirements as a perfect replacement of the 71 F/A-18A/B Hornet fleet.

I was thinking of another alternative such as developing a new single seat F-15, based on the latest advancements in F-15E as an export variant for new and existing customers to purchase the fighter for predictable costs.

You can email to Brad Jones Director, F-15 US Air Force Development Programs.

Roger Besancenez Boeing Vice President, F-15 Program or

Richard ‘Rick’ Banholzer, Boeing’s Director of Business Development for Air Force Fighters and Weapons about the idea of developing a new proposed single-seat F-15. Boeing can suggest the export designation of the Eagle for e.g. the F-15F or any idea’s they can come up with.

R. Patterson

I’d fire the pro-JSF advocates, Tom Burbage from Lockheed Martin and his colleagues. I love to see the turkey JSF program get killed and burn the failed program in the fire as a cancellation.

So what ships had been orderd by labor fabian,s,op,s one secound hand ship from uk, in 4 years.Thank,s STUPID.

I have no idea why my comment came up twice. I thought this website didn’t respond the comment at the first time or just takes a while to respond.

You mightn’t think 12 new submarines is significant. I, on the other hand, do.

I take it you’re unfamiliar with the government’s White Paper on defence out to 2050? Perhaps you should familiarise yourself with that before coming back and completely goosing yourself again.…

You realise international partners are paying for US$4.375 billion of the development of the F-35 right? Afterwards they are paying to purchase said airplanes. Its not like they are getting these things for free (well expect for possibly Israel anyway).

Gen6 will be unmanned and enter service in like 2040.

what about the TSR2 tell me it wasn’t cancelled at the behest of the UK’s puppetmasters?

Sorry Gman… Canadians, themselves, killed the Avro Arrow and the Avro company. Even when the UK wanted to buy Arrows, the Canadians were unable to deliver them before they would be obsolete. More info here: http://​en​.wikipedia​.org/​w​i​k​i​/​A​v​r​o​_​C​a​n​a​d​a​_​C​F​-​1​0​5_A

F22 with dual engines is much more survivable in Canadian airspace due to distances to airfields. This is probably also the case for Australia considering a lot of flying will be over water.

What’s up i am kavin, its my first time to commenting anywhere, when i read this article i thought
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