Fighter aircraft

February 12, 2014 - 4:15am

Raytheon has warned against overreliance on stealthy platforms alone in future air combat. Despite their low radar cross-sections (RCS), fifth-generation fighters such as the F-35 can be detected by modern air defense systems. To defeat these defenses, air forces should take full advantage of the latest sensors and weapons that can be carried on less stealthy aircraft, the company said.

February 12, 2014 - 4:00am
The Yak-130 trainer could find a role in counterterrorist campaigns.

Russia’s Irkut Corp. is well known in the Asia Pacific region because of the mighty vectored-thrust Sukhoi Su-30 series multirole fighters in service with Indian and Malaysian air forces, numbering about 200 aircraft. The maker also supplied Su-27UB operational trainers to China; and a number of Asian nations still operate swing-wing MiG-23U trainers and MiG-27 strike aircraft built at the corporation’s manufacturing site in Irkutsk city, western Siberia.

February 12, 2014 - 1:05am
The J-11B is now in widespread service with both the PLAAF and PLANAF, and current production aircraft like these are powered by Chinese engines. The single-seaters are supported by two-seat J-11BS aircraft (via Chinese internet).

While much of the world’s media attention is focused on China’s indigenous fighter programs, such as the J-10, J-20 and J-21/31, Shenyang continues to develop the “Flanker” series that has been in PLAAF (People’s Liberation Army Air Force) service since 1992. The latest versions to go into production are the J-15 carrier-borne fighter, and the J-16 multirole attack aircraft.

Fighter Flankers

February 12, 2014 - 12:40am
The mission avionics of Japan’s fleet of four Boeing E-767 AWACS aircraft are being upgraded in a $950 million program.

Faced with China’s increasingly assertive military posture, as well as a continuing ballistic missile threat from North Korea, Japan plans to spend more on defense, boosting its air and maritime forces. The plan commits to buying 28 Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II combat aircraft, 17 Bell-Boeing MV-22 Osprey tiltrotors, and three Northrop Grumman Global Hawk UAVs over the next five years. The Japan Air Self-Defense Force (JASDF) will also upgrade existing fleets of F-2 and F-15 fighters.

February 11, 2014 - 4:15am
AVIC’s display at the Aviation Expo China show included this scale model of the company’s J-31/Project 310. It’s designed to be marketed as China’s stealthy export competitor to Lockheed’s F-35.

The past two years have seen a number of developments with the military aircraft programs of the People’s Republic of China’s aerospace industry.

February 10, 2014 - 5:50am
AVIC’s display at the Aviation Expo China show included this scale model of the company’s J-31/Project 310. It’s designed to be marketed as China’s stealthy export competitor to Lockheed’s F-35.

The past two years have seen a number of developments with the military aircraft programs of the People’s Republic of China’s aerospace industry.

December 19, 2013 - 10:39am
The Gripen has emerged as Brazil’s choice of a new fighter after years of evaluation against the Boeing Super Hornet and Dassault Rafale. (Photo: Saab)

Brazil has chosen the Saab Gripen E as its new fighter aircraft, after years of indecision. Defense Minister Celso Amorim and Brazilian air force commander Bg. Juniti Saito announced their preference for the Swedish jet over the Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet and Dassault Rafale after authorization from President Dilma Rousseff. Previous attempts to decide the FX-2 competition failed at the political level.

November 18, 2013 - 10:25am
JF-17

Next month a ceremony will be held in Pakistan to mark the delivery of the 50th JF-17 multirole fighter from the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC) factory at Kamra. The handover marks the completion of production of the first batch of aircraft for the Pakistan Air Force (PAF). Designed in China by Chengdu as the FC-1, the JF-17 Thunder is being jointly developed and marketed by the Chinese and PAC.

November 15, 2013 - 8:00am
Glass flightdeck with HUD, Falcon 5X

Dassault Aviation launched its long-awaited, all-new Falcon 5X at last month’s NBAA show in Las Vegas. The long-range, advanced technology model should provoke strong interest among the growing Middle Eastern jet set.

November 15, 2013 - 6:30am
On August 27, Boeing flew the Advanced Super Hornet demonstrator for reporters and visiting delegations from Denmark and Brazil at its St. Louis facility. Visible are the Northrop Grumman conformal fuel tanks on the upper fuselage and Boeing-build centerline enclosed weapons pod.

The sunset could be farther off than thought for the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, the mainstay of the U.S. Navy’s carrier-based fighter fleet. With initial operational capability of the F-35C Joint Strike Fighter that will eventually replace the F/A-18 now planned in early 2019, Boeing and partner Northrop Grumman are proposing an “Advanced Super Hornet” upgrade designed to operate until 2030 and beyond.

 
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