Active & Future Fighter Aircrafts - Around the World | Page 12 | World Defense

Active & Future Fighter Aircrafts - Around the World

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Here's the Tech That Will Define the Air Force's Secret New Fighter Jet​

The sixth generation of combat aircraft likely looks like this.
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  • Engineers are already sketching out must-have technology for sixth-generation fighters, including the Air Force’s secret new fighter jet.
  • Sixth-gen fighters will likely start entering service in large numbers in the mid-2030s.
  • Consolidation and simplicity are essential features, with technology easing the burden on designers, pilots, and maintainers alike
The race to build cutting-edge fighter jets is back with a vengeance. Today, with less than 1,000 fifth-generation fighters flying worldwide, the world is already looking ahead to the next generation.

What technologies and capabilities will define the so-called “sixth generation,” including the Air Force’s secret new fighter jet, which it shockingly designed, tested, and flew in the span of just one year? The answer might surprise you.

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It looks like this

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It uses F1 style engineering

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It's stuffed with secret tech

The fall of the Soviet Union in 1991 put the brakes on more than 45 years of intense fighter jet development. The Cold War saw the rapid introduction of several key technologies, including jet engines, radar-guided missiles, heads-up displays, and stealth, plus the development of the first four generations of postwar fighter aircraft. In the 2000s, the U.S. released the first fifth-generation fighter, the F-22 Raptor.

Fifth-generation fighters are generally defined as aircraft developed from the ground up with radar-evading stealth, the ability to cruise above Mach 1 without afterburners, advanced radars and infrared sensors, and the extensive use of computers and software to not only fly the airplane, but also process sensor data.

Since the Raptor’s debut, other planes to join the fifth-generation pantheon include the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter and its international rivals, the Chengdu J-20 and Sukhoi Su-57.

The evolving great power environment, particularly Russia and China acting aggressively against their neighbors while beefing up their armed forces, is driving increased spending on fighters. The U.S., Japan, the U.K., and France and Germany are all working to develop sixth-generation fighters. The question is: Just what makes up a sixth-gen fighter, anyway?

n a recent webinar, engineers at Raytheon Intelligence & Space revealed they believe the next generation of fighters will be defined by several new technologies, including just one large transmitter that acts as an air-to-air radar, air-to-ground radar, radio, and electronic warfare platform. A single system controlled by software would replace several different systems, switching between tasks as needed.

The Raytheon engineers said sixth-gen fighters will also include self-landing systems, according to an Aerotech News recap of the webinar. Future aircraft will likely be designed to land autonomously on aircraft carriers, which could be used to land the aircraft in rough weather at a “precise landing zone.” A sixth-gen fighter could land autonomously, without human control, or provide guidance to pilots landing under challenging circumstances.

And then there’s artificial intelligence, which will function as a sort of copilot to a human pilot on a next-gen fighter jet. In fact, earlier this year, the Air Force revealed its secret new fighter jet will have an R2-D2-style sidekick, similar to the AI that operated a U-2 spy plane in an historic first.

A cockpit-bound AI could oversee the jamming of enemy radars and monitor for threats to the plane, like incoming missiles, and then automatically launch chaff or flares to lure the missile away. AI could also be used to fly a “loyal wingman” drone, a semi-autonomous uncrewed aircraft that could fly alongside crewed fighters.

What other bells and whistles will define the fighters of the future? We’ll find out soon enough.
 

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In the 80s, the MiG Design Bureau began work on the "МДП" (Multifunctional Long Range Interceptor) project to replace the MiG-31 interceptor. Later, the МДП became known as the "product 7.01". Like its predecessor, the task of the МДП was to patrol and protect the long borders of the USSR with a high degree of autonomy.

News rumored that russian will be going to restart this project with changes
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Britain's New Tempest Stealth Fighter Has a Big Problem: Cost​

Britain might be able to pull off creating a powerful new stealth fighter, but the price tag might mean London will have to cut purchases of the American-made F-35 stealth jet.

by Mark Episkopos

The United Kingdom is forging ahead with its ambitious project to produce a home-grown stealth warplane, even as it strives to retain its status as one of the core partners in the F-35 stealth fighter jet program.

London is doubling down on plans to indigenously produce its upcoming BAE Systems Tempest jet fighter, a next-generation successor to the United Kingdom’s Eurofighter Typhoon fleet. In a March 2021 Command Paper to Parliament, the British Ministry of Defense (MOD) reiterated that the Tempest fighter will be a major procurement priority into the coming decades. “Tempest will exploit our unique industrial base to create a 6th generation combat air enterprise centred in the UK,” the paper reads. “This fully digital enterprise will transform delivery, achieving pace and lowering cost and disrupting traditional approaches to defence procurement.”


The Tempest project’s current partners include Italy and Sweden. The government, which has always been clear that the financial solvency of the Tempest project hinges on securing a steady stream of foreign investment, is also currently exploring partnership opportunities with Japan.
As with most other next-generation fighters, the Tempest fighter will offer its own form of sensor fusion. The fighter’s ambitious Tempest’s Multi-Function Radio Frequency System (MFRFS) data collection protocols will be “four times as accurate as existing sensors in a package 1/10th the size,” according to defense contractor and Tempest partner Leonardo. The MFRFS will filter the battlefield information it collects through its onboard processor suite, generating a dynamic picture of the battlefield that can include everything from enemy movements to terrain layout. Like the F-35 jet, the Tempest fighter can also act as a flying command and control center by feeding some of that information to nearby friendly units. The Tempest project is betting big on future-oriented experimental avionics systems, with BAE Systems working on a “wearable cockpit” interface that replaces both analog and digital inputs with augmented reality (AR) display, supported by an integrated network of artificial intelligence (AI) features.

The Tempest’s project’s preoccupation with unorthodox prototype technologies extends to its weapons loadout. At a Rome seminar on missile defense, Italy’s General Enzo Vecciarelli suggested that the Tempest fighter could incorporate directed-energy weapons to counter hypersonic missiles. “On Tempest there will be a large amount of energy available and I don’t rule out the use of directed energy,” Vecciarelli said. It was previously confirmed that the Tempest fighter will also carry hypersonic missiles of its own, in addition to being able to operate drone swarms.

As the Tempest project moves further along in the development stage, the fate of the UK’s massive F-35 jet procurement plans hangs in the balance. As a “Level 1” partner in the F-35 program, London previously stated it will purchase as many as 138 units of Lockheed Martin’s fifth-generation stealth fighter. London, however, has so far only ordered forty-eight F-35 jet fighters. The MOD says it plans to “grow the [F-35] Force, increasing the fleet size beyond the 48 aircraft that we have already ordered,” but is dragging its feet on whether or not it remains committed to an acquisition target of 138 F-35 fighters.

The Tempest fighter is projected to reach Initial Operating Capability (IOC) by 2035.
 

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New Details Emerge About The Secretive Program That Aims To Replace The F-22​

The F-22’s days may be numbered, but we now have a little better view as to what they want to replace it with and why.​

BY THOMAS NEWDICK MAY 14, 2021
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Lieutenant General Clinton Hinote, the Air Force’s Deputy Chief of Staff for Strategy, Integration and Requirements, has provided new details about the service’s plans for its Next Generation Air Dominance (NGAD)program. This ‘system of systems’ aerial combat modernization effort is expected to yield, among other things, a new sixth-generation fighter jet. Hinote also provided additional information about a plan put forward earlier this week by Chief of Staff of the Air Force General Charles Brown, calling for the NGAD to replace the F-22 Raptor stealth fighter starting in the next decade, part of a larger proposal to trim the service's fighter fleets down to just four types, which you can read about more here.

Responsible for developing Air Force strategy and multi-domain operating concepts, Hinote gave interviews to both Air Force Magazine and Defense News in which he filled in some aspects of the highly secretive NGAD initiative. He also explained how the timeline for that program fits in with still-ongoing planning regarding the eventual retirement of the F-22.

Hinote, who is a former F-16 Viper and F-117 Nighthawk pilot, told Defense News that, at least right now, he doesn’t anticipate replacement of the F-22 with the NGAD to begin until the 2030s, by which time the Raptor will be “a 40-year-old platform."

“We don’t have to make that decision this year,” Hinote continued. “What we’re going to want to see is, when do we press from the NGAD being a developmental program to being a production program?”

The Air Force has so far been tight-lipped about the timeline for when any aircraft developed under NGAD will enter service, although it was disclosed last September that at least some kind of demonstrator platform for the program is already flying. In his interview with Air Force Magazine, Hinote hinted that a second demonstrator — potentially an entirely new follow-on design — might be in some stage of production now.

“As you’re allowing that program to mature, through a spiral series, you’re designing the next platform” with new software and sensor technology, Hinote told Air Force Magazine. He also hinted that new iterations could come along every five to eight years.

That kind of rapid technology turnover is something that was espoused by Will Roper, the former Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics, in what was termed the “Digital Century Series,” an ambitious goal you can read more about here. Apart from this concept, the Air Force is also working on the Low Cost Attritable Aircraft Platform Sharing (LCAASP) program that aims to deliver two attritable/reusable UAV variants that will be “derived from a common system architecture that share core system features and are tailored to perform specific missions, similar to Valkyrie’s modular approach,” in the words of a policy paper from the Mitchell Institute, an airpower think tank. This is part of the Air Force’s studies into creating scalable aircraft families based around common components.

However, it also seems likely that the Air Force has not settled on to what degree NGAD will be based around a manned platform or platforms. Hinote told Defense News that the program includes manned, unmanned, and optionally manned segments but suggested that not all of those might go forward into operational service. “Frankly I think we’re going to explore all of those to go forward to see exactly what the best use of this is,” he said. Meanwhile, Air Force Magazine reported that NGAD would definitely include an optionally manned platform based on its own conversation with Hinote.

Of course, with the system of systems approach, it’s also possible that Hinote was specifically referring here to a platform earmarked to replace the F-22 since it seems almost certain that NGAD will incorporate at least some unmanned platforms.

Exactly how the manned/unmanned conundrum plays out, Hinote did tell Air Force Magazine that, more generally, he expects autonomous aircraft to be used increasingly as force multipliers and referenced the recent first flight test of an initial version of the artificial intelligence-driven “computer brain” being developed under the Skyborg program. It’s worth noting, too, that the Air Force has publicly talked about Skyborg initially being intended to support operations of loyal wingman-type semi-autonomous drones, after which the goal is to insert this technology into a more robust, fully-autonomous unmanned combat air vehicle (UCAV). There has also been some discussion already about integrating some of this autonomous technology into manned aircraft, which could potentially present a pathway to turning existing or future manned types into optionally piloted ones.

While it might seem somewhat late in the day to be considering such fundamental issues as whether or not NGAD will have a human pilot, Hinote provided an assurance that the program is progressing well, both in terms of the work made by the (unnamed) prime contractors and the various subcontractors. He pointed to digital design concepts and systems integrationas being the cornerstones of the program and ensuring that it will be fielded in a timely manner — presumably sometime in the 2030s, based on his other statements.

But, if NGAD fails to live up to all that promise and is not so quick to deliver hardware to frontline units, Hinote remains confident that the F-22 can fill the gap until its successor becomes available.

It may be a “great airplane,” in Hinote’s words but the Raptor is increasingly becoming obsolescent for the challenging types of mission that are likely to be required in a new era of confronting near-peer adversaries, like China. Hinote provided the example of a hypothetical Chinese invasion of Taiwan in the mid-2030s as the kind of scenario in which the F-22 would no longer pass muster. Hinote explicitly pointed to the threat posed by the Chinese J-20 stealth fightercombined with advanced air-to-air missiles, suggesting this is seen as a true game-changer in the Asia-Pacific theater.

As we have examined before, the F-22 is hamstrung by its limited range and its limited magazine depth — the amount of armament it can carry on a single sortie, a problem that it shares with the F-35. Hinote also identified this issue. With that in mind, it is interesting to hypothesize how the NGAD might address the problem of magazine depth. This and many other factors suggest the NGAD fighter component will be larger than the F-22, while also exploiting broadband low-observability, likely being a tailless design. Another, perhaps complementary, option would be to employ the new fighter in conjunction with drones used in swarms, or individually as either sensor trucks or weapons trucks.

Furthermore, the F-22 is a small, maintenance-intensive fleet making it expensive to operate and it’s also increasingly under threat from advanced air defense systems, Hinote pointed out. Like the B-2 stealth bomber, another ‘silver bullet’ fleet, the Raptor is suffering, too, from the vanishing-vendor effect: a diminishing stock of parts provided by now-defunct original equipment manufacturers.

To help keep the F-22 at the cutting edge, Hinote confirmed that an upgrade program would be requested under the Fiscal Year 2022 budget, addressing sensors and undisclosed new air-to-air missiles, and, beyond that, perhaps a service-life extension program. These new weapons will “be used across the entire fighter inventory,” according to Defense News, suggesting that Hinote was referring to the AIM-260 Joint Air Tactical Missile (JATM). This is expected to be broadly similar in size to the current AIM-120 AMRAAM, to permit internal carriage in the F-22 and F-35, but will offer a greater range than even the AIM-120D, to keep pace with Chinese and Russian missile developments.

There is, of course, also a political edge to these discussions, in particular the need to leverage the government to fund the NGAD program. Hinote admitted to Air Force Magazine that the forthcoming budget request will include a “large … commitment” to NGAD. Leading officials talking down the future credibility of the F-22 will only help support these funding ambitions. In the final Fiscal Year 2021 budget, it’s notable that funds for the NGAD were cut slightly.

Aside from the F-22 and NGAD scenario, one other item of interest that came up in Hinote’s Defense News interview was the suggestion that the Air Force could upgrade its existing F-15E Strike Eagles to the same standard as the latest F-15EX, the first of which was recently delivered to the service. That could potentially parallel the kind of remanufacturing program, that Saudi Arabia adopted when upgrading its existing F-15S jets to the advanced F-15SA standard. The alternative for the Air Force would be to buy new F-15EX aircraft to replace them, a proposal that’s been doing the rounds for some time now.

Either way, it seems the hard-worked F-15E community, often the first choice for strike missions around the globe is receiving some kind of new or drastically revamped equipment.

As we have spoken about in the recent past, all these plans are yet to be formalized, and discarding the F-22 ‘early’ would likely face the wrath of lawmakers. There’s no doubt, however, that interesting times for the Air Force’s tactical aviation fleet lie ahead.

Contact the author: [email protected]
 

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FCAS/SCAF partner nations launch NGF demonstrator phase​

by Gareth Jennings



Partner nations France, Germany, and Spain have launched the next phase of the Future Combat Air System (FCAS)/Système de Combat Aérien Futur (SCAF) programme.
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The NGF of the NGWS, which is itself part of the wider FCAS/SCAF. The governments of France, Germany, and Spain have launched Phase 1B and Phase 2 of the programme, which are geared at developing and building a flying demonstrator of the fighter by 2027. (Janes/Gareth Jennings)

The three governments issued a joint communique on 17 May in which they announced that Phase 1B and Phase 2 of the project had commenced. Phase 1B aims to develop a flying demonstrator of the New Generation Fighter (NGF) element of FCAS/SCAF, with Phase 2 being the actual manufacture of the demonstrator in time for its 2027 first flight.

“Florence Parly, Minister of the Armed Forces of France; Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, Minister of Defence of Germany; and Margarita Robles, Minister of Defence of Spain, are pleased to announce the finalisation of the discussions regarding the content of the next phase of the FCAS programme, aiming at developing a NGF demonstrator flying by 2027,” the communique said.

“The discussions conducted by the DGA (Direction Générale de l’Armement French defence procurement agency), BMVg (Bundesministerium der Verteidigung German defence procurement agency), and DGAM (Dirección General de Armamento y Material Spanish defence procurement agency) during the last [few] months [achieved] a balanced agreement between the different partners for the next step of the demonstration phase of the programme.”
 

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Russia reveals details of its next 5th generation fighter jet​

The next fighter to be added to Russia’s arsenal is going to weigh less than 18 tons and be Mach 2 capable. It is going to be a light, nimble stealth jet with a single engine and thrust-to-weight ratio greater than 1, according to an insider from Russian state corporation Rostec, quoted by news agency TASS.

The platform will feature thrust vectoring, supermaneuverability and stealth. It is also going to be optionally manned, meaning that the jet will be capable of performing missions while being remotely controlled.

No further information on the timeline or the costs of the project has been revealed.

The plans to develop a light counterpart to the Sukhoi Su-57 were first announced in 2017 by Russian industry and trade minister Denis Manturov. In December 2020 the head of Rostec Sergei Chemezov revealed that Sukhoi was working on such an aircraft, but no further information was disclosed.

In the same month, a model of an unknown single-engine fighter jet was noticed in a photo of Chemezov’s desk, speculated to show the nose section of the aircraft in development.

In concept, the new aircraft seems to be similar to Lockheed-Martin F-35 Lightning II and Shenyang FC-31 Gyrfalcon, both of which were conceived as lighter counterparts to the F-22 and J-20 respectively. If the aforementioned photos really show the model of the aircraft, the jet would resemble the Boeing X-32 which lost to the X-35 (the prototype of the F-35) in the Joint Strike Fighter competition.

According to Chemezov, the aircraft was not yet ordered by the military. Sukhoi, a subsidiary of Rostec, is developing it without any funds from the state budget and hopes to attract the attention of both the Russian Air Force and foreign investors.
 

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View attachment 17881

Russia reveals details of its next 5th generation fighter jet​

The next fighter to be added to Russia’s arsenal is going to weigh less than 18 tons and be Mach 2 capable. It is going to be a light, nimble stealth jet with a single engine and thrust-to-weight ratio greater than 1, according to an insider from Russian state corporation Rostec, quoted by news agency TASS.

The platform will feature thrust vectoring, supermaneuverability and stealth. It is also going to be optionally manned, meaning that the jet will be capable of performing missions while being remotely controlled.

No further information on the timeline or the costs of the project has been revealed.

The plans to develop a light counterpart to the Sukhoi Su-57 were first announced in 2017 by Russian industry and trade minister Denis Manturov. In December 2020 the head of Rostec Sergei Chemezov revealed that Sukhoi was working on such an aircraft, but no further information was disclosed.

In the same month, a model of an unknown single-engine fighter jet was noticed in a photo of Chemezov’s desk, speculated to show the nose section of the aircraft in development.

In concept, the new aircraft seems to be similar to Lockheed-Martin F-35 Lightning II and Shenyang FC-31 Gyrfalcon, both of which were conceived as lighter counterparts to the F-22 and J-20 respectively. If the aforementioned photos really show the model of the aircraft, the jet would resemble the Boeing X-32 which lost to the X-35 (the prototype of the F-35) in the Joint Strike Fighter competition.

According to Chemezov, the aircraft was not yet ordered by the military. Sukhoi, a subsidiary of Rostec, is developing it without any funds from the state budget and hopes to attract the attention of both the Russian Air Force and foreign investors.
Interesting, lets this program actually materialised. Do not remain on papers. Because it will be cheaper then American F35 and will provide world other options to induct in medium weight 5th gen other then Chinese J31
 

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Interesting, lets this program actually materialised. Do not remain on papers. Because it will be cheaper then American F35 and will provide world other options to induct in medium weight 5th gen other then Chinese J31
That's a good question, does it just remain on paper, the drawing looks just like the the competing airframe that the F-35 won out against, this could be just propaganda

Boeing X-32
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British ‘Team Tempest’ is itching to enter new fighter design phase this summer​

By: Andrew Chuter
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Visitors walk past a mockup of the Tempest combat aircraft at the 2019 DSEI defense trade show in London on Sept. 11, 2019. (Sebastian Sprenger/Staff)​


LONDON – Britain’s effort to develop a sixth-generation combat jet is on track, with the concept and assessment phase of the program expected to be signed off by industry and government imminently, according to officials involved in the discussions.

An announcement by the Ministry of Defence on a contract starting the next phase of work on the British-led Tempest future combat air program is expected in the next few weeks, said a BAE Systems spokesman.

“We are making good progress on the route to the concept and assessment phase, with the shared aim of launching the next phase of an international program to jointly develop and deliver world-leading future combat air capability. We expect to agree the concept and assessment phase contract in the summer,” the spokesman said.

The spokesman wouldn’t be drawn on an exact date but with Parliament due to go into summer recess in July that could potentially trigger a contract announcement ahead of that.

A deal for the concept and assessment phase marks the first proper step to the launch of a full-fledged 6th-generation combat jet program by the British and their international partners.

The British government has committed £2 billion ($2.8 billion) to the program over the next four years, with industry expected to contribute as well.

Initial work on Tempest was formally launched mid-2018 with the British government and industry partners BAE, Leonardo, MBDA and Rolls-Royce, beginning the early stages of exploring and developing technology options in a partnership known as Team Tempest.

More recently that work has included involvement by likely program partners Italy and Sweden.

The likelihood of the three nations partnering in the upcoming phase of work was heightened at the end of last year when the governments announced they had signed a trilateral memorandum of understanding aimed at launching an international program this summer.

The British government has also been in talks with Japan, looking at how the nations can collaborate on their combined combat air requirements.
The doors are not closed to further partners coming onboard either.

“At the moment the focus is on our program and making it as successful as we possibly can,” Michael Christie, BAE’s director of future combat air systems, said at a May 25 online event hosted by the lobbying group ADS. “We will continue to be open to further partnering discussions with others but right now the primary focus is on delivering what we have to deliver,” he added.

Christie declined to put a time line on development of a prototype Tempest but said the project remained on target to see the jet reach its initial operating capability in the mid 2030s.

Over time the jet will replace Typhoon jets that currently form the backbone of Royal Air Force combat air capabilities. The British have also ordered 48 F-35B with an unknown number of the jets still to be ordered.

“We are on schedule to start the concept and assessment phase as we planned back in 2018. We aimed at a 2021 contract award and we are still on track for that,” said the BAE executive.

In a statement, U.K. Defense Minister Jeremy Quin said the Tempest program would provide a major employment boost and increase security capabilities.

“By investing in the research and development to support this national endeavor to create the Future Combat Air System alongside our partners, we are turbocharging our combat air industry,” he said, referring to the formal name for the British development program, not to be confused with the rival mainland Europe effort by France, Germany and Spain.

“Situated at the heart of the country’s aerospace sector, investment in FCAS reaffirms the government’s commitment to spend more than £2 billion over the next four years, with additional investment from industry, to create military capabilities that will keep us and our allies safe whilst creating thousands of skilled jobs right across the UK,” said Quin.

Just how important the future combat air system is to the British military aerospace industry and the government’s wider prosperity agenda was illustrated by an updated version of a report published by consultants PwC into the economic impact of Tempest in Britain.

The analysts first published the report last October but have since updated the document, commissioned by Team Tempest.

Among the main takeaways from the report are:
  • The Tempest program will contribute £26.2 billion to the UK economy between 2021-2050.
  • Team Tempest partners and their supply chain is expected to contribute £100 billion over the same period.
  • The program will support an average of 21,000 employees a year.
 

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Air Force Massively Increases 2022 Budget for 6th Gen Stealth Fighter​

Budget will be allocated towards enhancing radar, infrared sensors and other technologies

By Kris Osborn - Warrior Maven

(Washington, D.C.) The highly secretive, mysterious yet already airborne Air Force 6th Generation stealth fighter jet captures a lot of attention, something quite remarkable for a platform about which very little or nothing is known.

The simple fact that it exists, is arriving almost 10-years earlier than expected and has already taken to the skies, is certainly more than sufficient to generate massive global interest in the program. Might it re-define paradigms for air-attack?

Given all this, you might be curious as to where the Next Generation Air Dominance 6th-Generation fighter program stands in the mix of Air Force 2022 budget priorities? What kind of budget is it getting? While specific numbers are not available, senior Air Force leaders explain budget is massively growing.

“The 2022 budget grows NGAD by $623 million and supports the design efforts in advanced open system architecture, radar, infrared sensors, resilient communication, and air vehicle technologies. NGAD will provide survivability, lethality, and persistent whilst seamlessly integrating with the advanced manage - battle management system,” Maj. Gen. James Peccia, Air Force Deputy Assistant Secretary for Budget, told reporters according to a Pentagon transcript.

Alongside any discussion NGAD budget, senior leaders were clear that exact numbers would not be available, for obvious reasons.

“It’s a classified program. No comment here,” said Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy, Rear Adm. John Gumbleton, Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Budget, told reporters when asked about the 2022 budget for the 6th Generation.

Gumbleton’s response seems understandable and seems to make sense given the importance of security to a program like this, yet he and many senior Pentagon leaders do, in a general way, emphasize that the NGAD program is a huge priority. No surprise there, in fact senior U.S. military leaders regularly make the point that other programs are being reduced, cut or pushed aside, in part to make space for some kind of 6th-Generation budget.

Making funds available for 6th-Gen was a particular part of the rationale for the Air Force’s 2022 decision to divest large numbers of older, pre Block F-16s, Maj. Gen. James Peccia, Air Force Deputy Assistant Secretary for Budget, told reporters according to a Pentagon transcript. While many of these aircraft might likely be divested regardless of an emerging NGAD program, Peccia did specify that the dollars saved can be “reapplied” to programs “such as NGAD.”

“We have well over 900 F-16s. The F-16s that we're talking about here are pre-Block F-16s. These are not aircraft that we'll be able to modernize and be able to use in a heavily contested environment in the 23 -- '30 time frame so that's why we're divesting these upfront. And it's really to put a little bit of risk in the fighter force where we can then reapply those dollars for modernized programs such as NGAD that will really be applicable in the 2030s and 2040s time frame,” Peccia said.

A promising program such as the 6th-Generation aircraft, now generating much enthusiasm, certainly invites a lot of speculation and conjecture. On the Navy side, for instance, the service is also retiring large numbers of old F/A-18s, perhaps to help contribute dollars to their service’s participation in a 6th-Gen program.
 

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New Russian stealth fighter to be unveiled on the 20th of July, 2021.
Most probably it will be single engine will be in medium category in class of F35 and J31

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