The USAF has built and flown a full-scale Next Gen Fighter

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basher54321

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Unread post15 Sep 2020, 16:50

The US Air Force has built and flown a mysterious full-scale prototype of its future fighter jet
Valerie Insinna
15 Sept 2020



WASHINGTON — The U.S. Air Force has secretly designed, built and flown at least one prototype of its enigmatic next-generation fighter jet, the service’s top acquisition official confirmed to Defense News on Sept. 14.

The development is certain to shock the defense community, which last saw the first flight of an experimental fighter during the battle for the Joint Strike Fighter contract 20 years ago. With the Air Force’s future fighter program still in its infancy, the rollout and successful first flight of a demonstrator was not expected for years.

“We’ve already built and flown a full-scale flight demonstrator in the real world, and we broke records in doing it,” Will Roper told Defense News in an exclusive interview ahead of the Air Force Association’s Air, Space and Cyber Conference. “We are ready to go and build the next-generation aircraft in a way that has never happened before.”

Almost every detail about the aircraft itself will remain a mystery due to the classification of the Next Generation Air Dominance program, the Air Force’s effort for fielding a family of connected air warfare systems that could include fighters, drones and other networked platforms in space or the cyber realm.


https://www.defensenews.com/breaking-ne ... ghter-jet/
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talkitron

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Unread post15 Sep 2020, 17:33

That's a scoop if I ever saw one in the defense media. Congrats to the USAF and the unnamed contractor for being ahead of the game.
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Unread post15 Sep 2020, 19:24

New 6th Gen Fighter. What will it look like? What new technology will it have?
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milosh

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Unread post15 Sep 2020, 20:31

Hm did real thing fly or Roper is talking about simulation:
https://www.defenseone.com/technology/2 ... et/168479/

Btw I doubt it will be two engine design, that would be costly and then it would need to be heavy multirole to justify cost, something which Roper don't like, he isn't fan of "jack of all trades" he want Digital century series concept which I understand is couple different cheaper machines which will be tuned for specific role, sharing propulsion and electronics.
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knowan

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Unread post15 Sep 2020, 21:07

milosh wrote:Hm did real thing fly or Roper is talking about simulation:
https://www.defenseone.com/technology/2 ... et/168479/


“NGAD right now is designing, assembling, testing in the digital world, exploring things that would have cost time and money to wait for physical world results,” Roper said. “NGAD has come so far that the full-scale flight demonstrator has already flown in the physical world. It’s broken a lot of records in the doing.”
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Unread post15 Sep 2020, 22:11

“NGAD has come so far that the full-scale flight demonstrator has already flown in the physical world. It’s broken a lot of records in the doing.”

Of course, this is not the hard part (witness F-117 decades ago, and YF-22/23 and JSF X-jets some years later. How much risk was assumed in the flight — a trip around the pattern a few times w the gear down? How much flight envelope? Any mission systems capability? I wonder how the airworthiness authorities feel about all the hooyah about digital this and digital that when it comes to signing off on flight clearances.
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jessmo112

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Unread post15 Sep 2020, 22:13

The other part of this story is that it seems like the Chinas gravy train is over. No more easy leaps in technology via, theft and espionage.
If they want to catch us, they are going to have to work really hard on there own. Because of the Chinese we might not even see the thing until after IOC.
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Unread post15 Sep 2020, 22:22

Never underestimate the ability to screw up like subcontracting Boeing to build it...I wonder who's going to build it...
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jessmo112

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Unread post15 Sep 2020, 22:49

Ok guys what are your bets on what this thing looks like.
Any takers.

1. Tails or no tails?

2. Lasers or no lasers?

3. Pilot or no pilot?

4. What engine? Does it get to advents? Or 1 massive engine.

Are we taking any bets?
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marauder2048

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Unread post15 Sep 2020, 22:57

quicksilver wrote:“NGAD has come so far that the full-scale flight demonstrator has already flown in the physical world. It’s broken a lot of records in the doing.”

Of course, this is not the hard part (witness F-117 decades ago, and YF-22/23 and JSF X-jets some years later. How much risk was assumed in the flight — a trip around the pattern a few times w the gear down? How much flight envelope? Any mission systems capability? I wonder how the airworthiness authorities feel about all the hooyah about digital this and digital that when it comes to signing off on flight clearances.


And unless they've also demonstrated some DOT&E deflector shields...
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BDF

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Unread post15 Sep 2020, 23:06

milosh wrote:Hm did real thing fly or Roper is talking about simulation:
https://www.defenseone.com/technology/2 ... et/168479/

Btw I doubt it will be two engine design, that would be costly and then it would need to be heavy multirole to justify cost, something which Roper don't like, he isn't fan of "jack of all trades" he want Digital century series concept which I understand is couple different cheaper machines which will be tuned for specific role, sharing propulsion and electronics.


I'm not so sure. Seems that the primary focus will be a airframe tailored to the high end air dominance role with focus on stand in counter air and electronic attack from extended ranges. The AF has made it fairly clear they need deeper magazines and persistence as well. Depending on the performance requirements this suggests twin engine design. This is what the defense industry reports as well. I wouldn't be surprised to see some versions being single engine however.
When it comes to fighting Raptors, "We die wholesale..."
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BDF

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Unread post15 Sep 2020, 23:12

jessmo112 wrote:Ok guys what are your bets on what this thing looks like.
Any takers.

1. Tails or no tails?

2. Lasers or no lasers?

3. Pilot or no pilot?

4. What engine? Does it get to advents? Or 1 massive engine.

Are we taking any bets?


My WAG:

1. Tailless. Broadband LO has been a stated objective for a while now and that's not possible with a 4 post tail design and probably not with with a V- tail design either.

2. No lasers hard kill lasers at first. Maybe in "2nd gen" NGAD

3. Optionally Manned

4. Twin engine because I'm guessing payload will be fairly large. Hard to tell what performance requirements there will be and I'm sure they've studied what the trade offs are for things such as super cruise. If that is still valuable that will probably push engine requirements towards a twin engine design.
When it comes to fighting Raptors, "We die wholesale..."
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jessmo112

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Unread post16 Sep 2020, 01:02

Breaking D has some good points.
We will have to see congress on why we need a new plane and the F-35 isnt even FRP.

https://breakingdefense.com/2020/09/sec ... 1519913251

I do like the AF and defense establishments zeal in keeping us ahead.
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Corsair1963

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Unread post16 Sep 2020, 03:27

My guess is this is still very much a "Demonstrator". Hell, we don't know a tenth of what the current F-35 is really capable of....


So, how can you take another generational leap beyond that???
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Corsair1963

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Unread post16 Sep 2020, 03:38

Funny, no pictures or even a basic drawing???
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