Raptor retires, and a fighter that broke many records is coming

WASHINGTON, (BM) – It is not yet certain, but attitudes among the Biden administration are in the following direction: the retirement of one of the youngest American fighters – F-22 Raptor, at the expense of a next-generation fighter.

Week in Pictures: Sep 13-20
A U.S. Air Force F-22 Raptor demonstrates its operational fifth-generation capabilities when flies over the flightline with the Air Combat Command F-22 Demonstration Team, based at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia Sept. 6, 2018, at Dannelly Field, near Montgomery, Alabama. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Senior Airman Hayden Johnson)

Military experts are currently criticizing such an idea in the country. Dozens of them say such action is “unacceptable.” But their opinion is not fully expressed on the view of ​​the F-22 Raptor to retire. It’s rumoring that the Biden administration wants to reduce the number of fighters used from six to four. The US Air Force currently operates the F-22 Raptor, F-15C / D Eagle, F-15E Strike Eagle, F-15EX, F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, and F-16 Fighting Falcon. The eventual retirement of the F-22 Raptor (according to rumors around 2035-2040) will be ahead of schedule.

General Charles Brown, Chief of Staff of the Air Force, launched the idea for the US Army at the McAleese and Associates virtual conference.

Early retirement of the F-22 Raptor may indeed be a logical choice. The program has been stopped, no aircraft of this type are being produced, updates are delayed or missing, so problems are chasing the F-22 Raptor. Against the entire air arsenal background available to the United States, 186 F-22 Raptors are not very large.

The F-35 could follow the fate of the F-22

The world’s most modern fighter, F-35 Lightning II, can follow the fate of early retirement, like the F-22 Raptor. These are rumors so far, but there are signs that it may happen.

In recent years, this fighter has been severely criticized. It was not long ago (two years ago) when a report on the condition of the F-35 leaked to the media and revealed more than 800 errors in the fighter, 13 of which were significant and seriously threatening its operation.

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Adam Smith said strong words in early March this year. According to him, Washington and the American taxpayer continue to spend on something that has “such low opportunities.” Adam Smith is not an accidental man – he is chairman of the US Armed Forces Committee.

When you are constantly upgrading a system with new technologies, when you are continually giving it higher expectations – sooner or later, it will fall to the ground, and the effect of impact will affect everything around it. From 2001 until today, the F-35 is the “experienced bunny” of Lockheed Martin. And what did this lead to? High costs and delays. Since then, acquisition costs have been $ 428 billion, which should be twice as low – about $ 240 billion.

However, these figures are too small compared to $ 1.727 trillion – approximate operating and maintenance costs. Congratulations to the winners (Lockheed Martin), and welcome to the dark zone of the losers (the American taxpayer).

The F-22 Raptor does not have the F-35’s political lobby

Rumors that the F-35 is retiring are a fact, but making them a reality is almost impossible against the background of the “political cards” handed out by voters in the last US election.

Lockheed Martin’s political lobby on the F-35 project is significant. Termination of the program depends on senators, and currently, Hawaii and North Dakota are the only states in the United States that do not lobby for this fighter.

F-22 Raptor does not have this luxury, and because of “this branch you are alone,” your friends from the past will now cut it.

F-22 will be replaced by a fighter that ‘broke many records’

The United States says it is already working on the project. In February this year, the news was announced when General Charles Brown said that a process was underway to reduce the number of F-35 aircraft ordered in favor of accelerating the NGAD [Next Generation Air Domination] program. According to him, the NGAD demonstrator has already flown, and the launch of a new generation 4.5 fighter-bomber, which would replace the F-16, is imminent.

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Some media outlets claim that in 2020, the NGAD demonstrator had already flown and “broken many records.” But what it looks like or what it will look like is still unclear. At the moment, there are only conceptual images and assumptions, which is not proof that this is what the new next-generation American fighter will look like.


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