Long, comprehensive discussion focused on Poland and the adopting of F-35 into the Polish Air Force. After a relatively quick incorporation of the F-16 into their fighter force, Poland then committed to the F-35. The learning curve to move from Russian tactics and Conops to Western ways of flying was a difficult and bold endeavor. Now the air force is about to take the giant leap to adapt to 5th Gen and bring the F-35 on board. Clearly the enemy is close and the need for F-35 is well understood. We also touched on the Automatic Ground Collision Avoidance System which I have discussed before and continue to push.
Hi Billie. Looking at the previous Blog side view image of the F-35, is there a two-seat or Dual version on the drawing boards somewhere? It looks feasible if one is ignorant enough of the details involved. The canopy would be the main hindrance although all of the other 4th Gen Jets seem to get along with a way long canopy covering an extended nose and cockpit section. Hopefully the loss in stealth if any would be tolerable This of course would open up those Shotgun rides. Cheers, Billy Best
Originally the F-22 had plans for a 2 seat version (btw so did the A-10 a long, long time ago). In the F-22 case, the 2 seater was eliminated. We all know the debate of 1 pilot versus a 2 crew aircraft. Sensor fusion was focused on reducing pilot workload and enhancing efficiency of the warfighter in the cockpit with its revolutionary algorithms to manage data into knowledge. I flew F-4s and Tornados when I was a test pilot in Germany and can attest to the value of a back seater to alleviate workload in those older generation fighters. However the CF-18, F-16 and grey F-15 (A-C not the E) taught us that one seat can be very lethal. I will always choose the extra fuel over a backseater but that’s just me.
Mr. Flynn you just crushed it! I have no doubt this article will become the Holy Grail for F-35 Enthusiasts for decades to come!
I have heard rumors that the F-35 has performed well against the F-22 in a number of exercises. Do you have any knowledge of that???
“Sidekick- Missile Rack” I know that “Sidekick” was on the USN Fiscal Year 2021 Unfunded Priorities List for the F-35C. Yet, never heard if it was actually approved? Is the missile rack still planned for both the USAF and USN F-35s? Plus, what about export customers? Will he Canadian F-35A’s get it???
If, the Adaptive Cycle Engine (ACE) is incorporated into future models of the F-35. Will the aircraft go faster than today’s Mach 1.6 limit? If, not why………
Scot….it is fascinating to me all the press focused on the proposed engines for the F-35. Of the many, many investments that need to be made, pursuing a new engine is not one I would invest in. The F-135 transformed what any of us know about fighter engine technology. The engine is more powerful, more efficient and more reliable by significant amounts than any previous generation of engine. I cannot imagine the F-35 program agreeing to invest billions to gain some improvement in efficiency or marginal increase in power.
Can the F-35 go faster, yes…but that would take a complete envelope expansion on the order of what was done during SDD to clear out all elements of a new flight envelope….and I cannot imagine what the aircraft would gain by that. We do not routinely in operations race around at M1.6 now so why would we need to go even faster in the future. We need hypersonic weapons, better air-to-ground weapons, integration of swarms of drones and so much more. New engines sound sexy but are not needed and there is no money for that effort.
” Of the many, many investments that need to be made, pursuing a new engine is not one I would invest in.”
Curious. Would not an upgraded engine provide more range, electrical power, cooling, and that sorts of things? That seems to be the be part the goals of the AETP program.
$6B USD for a new engine that not one single operator or commander has asked for that equates to 70 F-35s on the ramp which the USAF desperately needs. I think the engine upgrade is dead in the water. What is needed is to be able to provide dramatically more power to support the avionics upgrades that come with TR-3 and Block 4. For those significant upgrades there will have to be enhancements to the F-135 engine. GE will not be given a green light for an engine that is not needed and that will certainly cost more than the projected $6B.