Home » Air » Air-to-Air Combat » Japan to Fly its Own Stealth Fighter Prototype By 2014

Japan to Fly its Own Stealth Fighter Prototype By 2014

by John Reed on March 8, 2011

Well, the stealth races are now well underway, with China, Russia (partnering with India) and now Japan moving to field stealth fighters this decade.

Fed up with the U.S. refusal to share the F-22 Raptor despite China’s rapidly advancing military technology, Tokyo now says it will fly Japan’s first stealth fighter prototype by 2014, according to the AP:

The prototype will likely be able to fly in 2014, Lt. Gen. Hideyuki Yoshioka, director of air systems development at Japan’s Ministry of Defense, said in an interview with the Associated Press.

He said Japan has put 39 billion yen ($473 million) into the project since 2009, after it became clear the U.S. was not likely to sell it the F-22 “Raptor”—America’s most advanced fighter jet—because of a congressional export ban.

“We are two years into the project, and we are on schedule,” Gen. Yoshioka said Monday. He stressed that a successful test flight of the prototype, dubbed “Shinshin” (“Spirit”), would not lead to immediate production. The prototype would test advanced technologies, and if successful the government would decide in 2016 how to proceed.

That’s pretty darn ambitious. Still, it could be done. Especially if Japan is given help by the U.S. Just because we can’t share our most advanced jets with the island nation, doesn’t mean we won’t be helping one of our closest allies. Especially when that ally is so close to a China that is making no qualms about its desire to exert lots of influence over the region in the coming decades.

This new program, known as ATD-X, isn’t meant to supplant Japan’s plans to buy F-35 Joint Strike Fighters, F/A-18E/F Super Hornets or Eurofighter Typhoons to replace its aging F-4J Phantoms and F-15s. Instead the program is mean to hone Japan’s ability to develop a 21st Century air superiority fighter on par with the F-22, according to the article.

 

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{ 95 comments… read them below or add one }

Jay March 8, 2011 at 10:21 am

Sad. We could have sold 100 F22s to Japan, Aus, and Israel. That would have brought the per unit cost down significantly. And saved highly skilled US jobs.

Meanwhile the F35 keeps getting delayed and more and more expensive…

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Pat March 10, 2011 at 5:38 pm

Jay, we're not talking about making money or trying to save American jobs, we are talking about the big picture; national security. Something all Americans should be thinking about and not thinking about how much money we could make. Everything isn't all about money, its about being secure and protecting our nation.

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Chief March 12, 2011 at 4:30 pm

Jay:
Keeping the work force in the job market does not always mean the we should exprort to maintain a healthy ecomomy.

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Chris March 8, 2011 at 10:32 am

Israel would have then sold it to China and everyone would come back in this thread to cry foul.

But agreed on Australia and Japan, at least an export version so that the molds didn't have to be destroyed and a per unit savings would be realized.

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blight March 8, 2011 at 10:57 am

Israel pulled back the Phalcon sale on objections from the states. No hardware crossed state lines. Despite having a great deal of American hardware, there's no proof China is in the F-15 or F-16 business, or running around with Merkavas or old M-60 based Sabras (though they could've gotten their hands on M-48s from their ex friends Vietnam…)

Besides, 'tis easier to bribe a single guy in the R&D lab for access to blueprints than to reverse-engineer something in which you still need to break things down into blueprints…

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chaos0xomega March 8, 2011 at 11:16 am

http://www.nti.org/db/china/imisr.htm http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/FL21Ak01http://www.kuro5hin.org/story/2006/6/11/3145/9766http://www.washington-report.org/backissues/0499/

Those are only the first 4 results from a google search, there are many more. The fact that Israel pulled back on one arms deal means nothing, thats an exception rather than the rules. The fact of the matter is that Israel is China's second largest arms supplier, it has transferred many technologies already, and continues to do so. Even if they wouldn't hand over an F-22 to Chinese engineers doesn't mean they wouldn't study it, reverse engineer it, and give the information to the Chicoms.

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asdf March 8, 2011 at 1:30 pm

troll harder

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Sev March 8, 2011 at 12:39 pm

Who needs Israel to sell China technology when you have Bill Clinton?

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brian March 8, 2011 at 11:56 am

Our Foreign Policy has never made any sense. It undermines American Security at every turn. Of course sell the F22 to the Japs, they won't resell, the tech would end up in their enemies hands. The Aussies, who else in a better position to secure the strategic water passes between the indian ocean and the pacific. All that keeping the tech to ourselves has done, is increase production costs for ourselves and ever reduced buys ending in the canceling of the production line. How has this increased US security on amy level?

This government has itself to be penny wise and pound foolish. Petty on insignificant issues, dismissive of big picture.

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PMI March 8, 2011 at 5:37 pm

Australia had no interest in purchasing the F-22 (despite what Kopp & Co. would have you believe).

Japan has serious problems with Chinese espionage efforts against their armed forces. Japanese F-22s would very likely mean proprietary data making it's way to Beijing.

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FtD March 8, 2011 at 6:50 pm

with the escalating cost of F35, i think RAAF was taking second look at possibility of getting F22. plus the fighter gap issue which Aust govt spent another few billion on some mediocre F18F+ just to wait for the ever delaying F35. plus the increasing numbers of advanced flankers in neighboring countries won't make Aust govt very comfortable either.

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PacificSentinel March 10, 2011 at 5:26 am

"Australia had no interest in purchasing the F-22 (despite what Kopp & Co. would have you believe)."

That’s mainly because the Raptor isn't multi-role, give it ground attack capabilities (like the Strike Eagle) and we would have been all over the Raptor in a heartbeat!!

Raptor has longer range than the F35 & for Aus, range is EVERYTHING!!

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Joe Schmoe March 10, 2011 at 7:05 am

The F-22 does have ground attack abilities… Hell it was originally called the F/A-22 (/A – attack).

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blight March 10, 2011 at 7:31 am

From Wiki:

"In June 2009, Increment 3.1 was tested at Edwards Air Force Base. This provided the F-22 a basic ground attack capability through Synthetic Aperture Radar mapping, Electronic Attack and the GBU-39 Small Diameter Bomb."

PacificSentinel March 10, 2011 at 8:32 am

Yes it does now, but (from what I remember) the reason given (by the gov of the day) for the Raptor not being chosen for Aus was the inability to do ground attack, later (after more development) when it had those capabilities & the suggestion of its purchase being raised again, the US Gov had slated it for US use only, scuttling the idea all together.

Personally, I'd love to have the Raptor in our arsenal!

PacificSentinel March 10, 2011 at 10:35 am

Try the following which is from Wikipedia’s F22 Raptor page.

“Some Australian politicians and defense commentators have proposed that Australia should purchase F-22s instead of the F-35. In 2006, the Australian Labor Party supported this proposal on the grounds that the F-22 is a proven, highly capable aircraft, while the F-35 is still under development. However, Australia's Howard government ruled out purchase of the F-22, on the grounds that it is unlikely to be released for export, and does not have sufficient ground/maritime strike capacity.”

“and does not have sufficient ground/maritime strike capacity”

BAJ March 9, 2011 at 2:29 pm

Not that I am anti Japan, but Toshiba was neck deep in transfering critical knowledge to the Russians in the 80s on US sub tech (screw designs). It helped Russia significantly with what became the 1st generation Akula.
I suspect the massive culture delta with China would be a buffer against data sharing though.
Also, I have to beleive stealth is just one of the gen 5 advances with the F22. I believe the sfotware/communciation integration is also a big piece to the cost of this aircrafts development and ultimatley its competitive advantage.

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SJE March 8, 2011 at 12:26 pm

Israel, unfortunately, has not exactly covered itself in glory in being willing to sell its technology to the Chinese and other powers, provided that such technology does not end up in its immediate neighborhood. Israel's desire for its own security is pursued without much concern for its impact on the USA.

The Australians and (to a lesser extent) Japanese, OTOH, have been far more trustworthy.

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Joe Schmoe March 8, 2011 at 1:07 pm

Israel would say the same by the U.S. selling weapons to its enemies; Jordan, Egypt, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, etc.

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IKnowIT March 8, 2011 at 1:14 pm

So WHAT about what they think?

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Joe Schmoe March 8, 2011 at 1:20 pm

On that same note, why should Israel care about what America thinks of them exporting native technology.

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Joe Schmoe March 8, 2011 at 1:24 pm

Wait, don't answer.

We've been through this argument a thousand times on this site, just use Google and save us the time.

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@Earlydawn March 8, 2011 at 2:45 pm

You're right, Israel shouldn't care. And that kind of attitude leads to them being cut out of all kinds things, like their suspension as a main F-35 partner. You reap what you sow.

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Joe Schmoe March 8, 2011 at 4:02 pm

They were never "suspended"… They just didn't have the money (or the incentive) to front the original entry costs into the JSF program. However they later signed on as a Security Cooperative Participant.

"There are three levels of international participation. The United Kingdom is the sole 'Level 1' partner, contributing slightly over US$2 billion, about 10% of the development costs. Level 2 partners are Italy, which is contributing US$1 billion, and the Netherlands, US$800 million. At Level 3 are Canada, US$440 million; Turkey, US$175 million; Australia, US$144 million; Norway, US$122 million; and Denmark, US$110 million. The levels generally reflect the financial stake in the program, the amount of technology transfer and subcontracts open for bid by national companies, and the priority order in which countries can obtain production aircraft. Israel and Singapore have also joined as Security Cooperative Participants."

But hey, don't let me confuse you with facts. Keep on trolling.

Joe Schmoe March 8, 2011 at 3:06 pm

They were never "suspended"… They just didn't have the money (or the incentive due to the F-22) to front the original entry costs into the JSF program. However, they later signed on as a Security Cooperative Participant.

But hey, don't let me confuse you with facts.

asdf March 8, 2011 at 1:32 pm

can you provide some proof that the pakis have sent a f-16 for evaluation to china? or was it just for joint exercises or similar?

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Joe Schmoe March 8, 2011 at 2:15 pm

http://www.fas.org/man/dod-101/sys/ac/row/j-10.ht

"Apparently, Chinese engineers are trying to develop the J-10 from a single F-16 provided by Pakistan"

Personally I think it is suspect but hey, there it is.

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blight March 8, 2011 at 3:27 pm

FAS is hit and miss, though generally accurate.

There's a mockup photo of a F-16 parked somewhere in China, with comments suggesting it's fake (for instance, the words F-16 written on the side).

An F-16 would be more valuable to the Chinese in the form of disassembled parts ready for reverse-engineering…

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asdf March 9, 2011 at 11:07 am

and with assistance from Israeli engineers associated with Israel’s US-financed Lavi fighter program, which was cancelled in 1987.

hm, when was that, 10 years ago?

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asdf March 9, 2011 at 11:08 am

and f16 is not new tech anyway, it shouldn't be difficult to make a similar ac even without the one, provided by pakistan.

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Joe Schmoe March 9, 2011 at 5:43 pm

Like I mentioned, it sounds suspect and I said that it does.

But the same kind of suspect information didn't stop him from posting before about the Lavi.

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Dfens March 8, 2011 at 1:47 pm

You people clearly don't understand what is important here. What is important is that F-22 production does not threaten the funding of F-35 development. Anything else is secondary. The defense contractors will protect that free money they get from their development award fee over all else.

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Oblat March 8, 2011 at 2:39 pm

Basically te Japanese have taken a look at the debacle that is our fighter industry and come to the conclusion that it's in a terminal dive.

Lockheed managed to kill export of F-22 so that it dosen't canabalise sales of the more profitable F-35. That sort of political clout means that our aircraft will be designed to maximise contractor profits for the forseable future.

Thats not a future Japan wants to participate in.

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blight March 8, 2011 at 2:53 pm

To be fair, LM could assume that export orders of the F-22 would lead to impetus from export customers to upgrade the avionics. Then there's an upgrade business, which often nets more money for the contractor than simply cranking out airframes.

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Blue1 March 8, 2011 at 3:26 pm

It must be a dark day in ****…oblat has a point, shooting at the right target, wrong vital spot. Like I posted on the Russian fighter article, hopefully these other countries rapidly move from x-plane, to y-plane to production. They’ll go a long way towards showing what kind of messed up shape our R&D, acquisitions system, and overall military procurement cycle is in. I have however, long since lost faith in having them fixed…

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Blue1 March 8, 2011 at 3:33 pm

Oh yeah, speaking of which, five bucks says they build their fighter on time, and it transforms into a giant robot with laser guns complete with lightsabers and energy shields…

You laugh, yet you secret want that too…

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joe March 9, 2011 at 3:39 am

Not convinced about the veritech concept :-)
Nevertheless, you can be pretty sure that all the "no-one else can manage what we can do, Nah-Nah-Neh-Nah-Nah" dismissal of the chinese and russian concepts by the DoD will not apply if Mitsubishi, Sumitomo et all start getting involved…

In terms of time and cost? Well…taking the F2 as an example I'm not necessarily convinced.

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Belesari March 8, 2011 at 3:54 pm

Hopefully Japan will order some f-35's for its navy. Either the B or C models when all gets worked out.

If they do build a large land bases stealth fighter like the F-22 hopfully it wont go as bad as the F-16 hybrid they built if i remember correctly they were almost as much per plane as a f-22.

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Justin H March 8, 2011 at 4:42 pm

From what Ive read, it will be a stealthy gen 4.75 aircraft.

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blight March 8, 2011 at 5:42 pm

The "gens" are arbitrary. You brought up the metrics for 5th gen last time:

Supercruise, stealth, powerful radar, powerful electronics

If Japan simply needs a short range fighter with an optional afterburn dash capability, supercruise is not necessary. Stealth is kind of a given nowadays, as is powerful radar and top-notch avionics.

Confident japan can do number three and four especially if they are on the list for getting electronics from the United States…they have AEGIS already, next will be AESA.

So that leaves supercruise and stealth. If they can buy F-22 engines, they'd be set there too. It is unlikely they would get F-22 RCS data, so they would have to do their own stealth designs. However, the radar reflection equations were published and well known back in the '70s, so the theory is worked out, the feasibility is worked out, so design should be possible. Japan would have to develop low RCS material though.

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Justin H March 9, 2011 at 12:41 am

Well they cant do supercruise as far as anyone knows, and they may not even be able to buy foreign made engines. Plus their stealth-manufacturing is a huge question mark.

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Lance March 8, 2011 at 5:11 pm

Hay I just check out web site about the Japanese Self Defense Force Air Force they are NOT NOT replacing the F-15s in service they are replacing F-4s and RF-4s in JSDFAF service.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/F-15_Eagle

Check out the Japanese section.

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blight March 8, 2011 at 5:37 pm

The present implementation of UAVs would at best be able to see targets (or be directed to them), lock on and fire missiles. The missiles would then do the heavy lifting.

However, if you want a UAV that can strafe ground targets, that requires enough bandwidth for a user to see, enough cameras to give good SA, and enough durability to survive get shot to bits.

If you have excellent radars and just need a flying truck that can drop missiles on tracks far away from home waters, a UAV might fit the bill. However their utility and flexibility remains limited, and they would be utterly crippled by strikes on a ground station. Manned aircraft in the air could still at least finish their mission before being hampered by strikes on ground facilities.

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FtD March 8, 2011 at 7:12 pm

Japan mostly operates air superiority fighters like F4, F15 as they don't need strikers as they are by name a self defense force. Therefore F35 does not suit their requirements as the type cannot establish air superiority in supersonic combat environment. So it's understandable for their force to develop their own air dominance fighter when US doesn't care what their allies need. The bottom line is F35 isn't one size fits all kind of fighter as LM wants everyone to belief

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Stratege March 8, 2011 at 8:47 pm

I am very sceptical.
How many years of experience in development and construction of modern military aircraft does Japan have? What with their missile technology, knowledge in aerodynamics, radar techonolgy, jet engines etc.. ???

In comparison with US, Russia or even China… How they can produce top class combat fighter jet?

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Belesari March 8, 2011 at 9:15 pm

Your asking if the japanese can build a top quality hightech gizmo?

jk there good dont worry about that atleast.

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SJE March 8, 2011 at 9:23 pm

Japan does not have a huge level of expertise in planes, much beyond what it has done in collaboration with foreign manufacturers (e.g. J2). That said, Japan has decades of experience in both high technology and manufacturing. Their cars are world class (despite my cheeky comment). They build and launch their own satellites on their own rockets. Some of their space probes have been very very good. They design and build their own nuclear power plants, including advanced breeder reactors. Its less a matter of skill, but experience, and I think the only reason that they have not gone into warplanes in a bigger is because of regional politics.

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Blue1 March 8, 2011 at 9:57 pm

Experience in building modern military aircraft is only a factor if you're retarded and decide trial and error is the best way to fit a square peg in a round hole. But as mentioned below, I'm sure Japan has access to engineers and manufacturing that can do what they need

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Belesari March 8, 2011 at 10:44 pm

Also the japanese have gotten licence to build a few military aircraft from us there F-16 hybrid for example. They can do they just have to get the experience and understanding back.

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Mike March 8, 2011 at 11:23 pm

The Japanese will do what the Chinese and Russians did by feeding pictures and diagrams as well as known facts involving the F-22 Raptor into a supercomputer; then using aeronautical engineering and some guesses, they can essentially reverse engineer a copy of an aircraft which might be very similar to the F-22.

The Japanese can merge technologies from experience with F1 race cars and their F-2 fighter jet program for their stealth fighter program by making extensive usage of composite materials on the outside over an aluminum alloy skeletal frame.

Once the prototype is flying, the Japanese can do some tweaking to enhance the stealthiness of the aircraft.

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blight March 9, 2011 at 7:56 am

That would at best give them an approximate description of the outer shell of the F-22. Measuring an objects three dimensional dimensions from 2D photos without a precise reference marker is a dark art, and even slight error will produce RCS.

Having a shell is nice, but it won't tell you anything about internal electronics and internal arrangement of equipment. Major design work would still be required even if the aircrafts dimensions were precisely known.

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John B March 8, 2011 at 11:40 pm

Japan spent only 500M$ so and their prototype is ready to take off. How much did the Dod spend for the JSF and ATF to do that ?

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Joe Schmoe March 9, 2011 at 12:09 am

I think $500m was spent on agreeing where to take off and shipping it there.

/sarcasm

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Curt March 9, 2011 at 3:21 am

You should re-read the post. They have already spent $487million (give or take) since 2009 but it won't fly until 2014. They will probably spend a little more in the next couple of years to actually build it, test it, and fly it don't you think?

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FtD March 9, 2011 at 3:44 am

i don't think using current US model of fighter jet building should be the norm as US 'used' to be quite efficient in introducing new jets to the force… normally it'd take 4 years from first flight to IOC but F22 stretched that to 8 years & now F35 looking @ 10+ years. So i think a development cycle of 4-6 years is quite ok, so i'm looking forward to all those new jets from Russia/India, China & now Japan as well….. & let's hope Europe will come to their senses & produce their own stealth fighter.

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Proud Aussie March 9, 2011 at 5:33 am

As a proud Australian Ally of the US I hope that the F35 gets going on track and time as the public here are getting sick of the cost blow outs etc.

We would happily have bought the F22 which was our first choice. Seems strange that the US wouldn't share the technology with us. Considering that we have fought every war with the US since the Second World War and have installations such as Pine Gap pver here and are considering allowing more US troops on our soil.

We are taking deliver of two large Helicopter Landing Ships in 2014 which have the capablility of Carrier Borne Fighters, so hopefully we will get some carrier variants of the F35. This would be a capability we haven't had snce 1982 when we retired our last carrier.

Lastly I apologise for our poor excuse for a Prime Minister (Julia GILLARD) currently in your country.

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SJE March 9, 2011 at 11:48 am

The Aussies have fought on the same side as the US in every major war since Federation in 1901. WW1, WW2, Cold War, Korea, Vietnam, Gulf War I and II, Afghanistan. Also involved in fighting communist insurgencies in SE Asia, fightin in Somalia, various peace keeping forces etc. Not bad for a nation that only just got to 20 million people.

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Sanem March 9, 2011 at 11:09 am

Japan could easily build a UAV air superiority force:

a) the Predator alternative. long endurance, with 2 AMRAAMs or Meteors, these would patrol a specific area. they would have very limited capabilities themselves, little more than a missile delivery system, using external targetting data, for example from AWACS. cost would be only a few million $ per aircraft, and a minimal operating and training cost

b) the F-16 UCAV alternative: basically an unmanned F-16, it would exchange endurance for speed and mobility, to get into position quickly to fire it's missiles before disengaging. cost could be as low as $20 million per unit

c) the stealth UCAV alternative: something like an X-47b, Phantom Ray or Neuron, these would combine endurance with speed and superb stealth. they would work closely with the other two type, sort of like a sniper, using them as bait and fodder screen so they can outflank the enemy forces, engaging them from angles where enemy stealth is not as high

d) manned fighters: these would be combined with the UAVs, using them as on-site operators, staying at long range themselves, brining more missiles to the fight and guiding the UAVs tactically with hard to jam, no delay, short ranged communications. a second pilot in the fighter would be mandatory, making the F-22 and F-35 very unatractive in this role

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txkboy March 9, 2011 at 11:28 am

Only because Japan doesn't have the spy network to steal our technology like the Chinese do…lol.

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yellow devil March 9, 2011 at 12:24 pm

Well really it's no different than a state-of-the-art million dollar Abrams tank being destroyed by an Iranian built explosively formed penetrator IED that only costs a few hundred dollars to make. Does that mean we shouldn't have Abram tanks anymore?

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Dimitar March 9, 2011 at 1:03 pm

that would definitely propel the Eurofighter to the top or pretty much the top, seeing that it's a multi-role fighter and is designed with maneuverability as a top priority

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asdf March 9, 2011 at 5:49 pm

as is the f-22. euro is and always will be in the 2nd place, regardless of the f35.

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Deane Gilmour March 9, 2011 at 5:50 pm

What? I thought that Japan was religated to defense ONLY by virtue of the WWII treaty. A stealth fighter is NOT a defensive weapon system. It is an offensive system pure and simple.

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FtD March 9, 2011 at 7:33 pm

the meaning of stealth is not be seen by others….. NOT being offensive

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Jay March 10, 2011 at 9:37 am

The F22 is designed to detect and shoot down enemy aircraft with less chance of being detected and shot down by enemy fighters. It was designed to carry 8 air to air missiles (vs the F35 which carries only 4). That would be helpful to defend Japanese airspace from Chinese aircraft. The Chinese have a huge advantage in numbers, so a large, fast stealth fighter would be perfect to down multiple Chinese planes with minimal losses.

While any weapon (including the 12 guage in your closet of the knife in your kitchen) can of offensive or defensive, the F22 would be an excellent system for defence, and more importantly for deterrance.

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asdf March 9, 2011 at 5:53 pm

who is helping japan with this project (or a similar one)? LM, EADS, Boeing?
i know that there was a news that they were seeking assistance from a foreign (more experienced) manufacturer, but i don't know who was picked out.
LM? although i wonder how come they didn't just offer the f35.

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asdf March 9, 2011 at 5:55 pm

(if not on this program, then the f-x or whatever it is)

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"Kansas" Angell March 9, 2011 at 9:36 pm

Ah, Heck, the Chineese just sit and wait for the US to send them our Night Vision (which we were clearly #1 at so that they can have the darned Circuit cars assemblies built cheaper! You didn't see much exposure on that because it was an embarassment to the USA and as far as I know only an executive lost his job over the ordeal.

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"Kansas" Angell March 9, 2011 at 9:36 pm

Personally I believe that our satelite technology needs to be better secured and we need more capability in space at this point against other countries. Our latest and greatest tests of LASERs from Ground Undersea, surface and Air has been nothing short of a giant success…No comments on this though unlwss you read thin lines…
I think the LARGEST problem is that our Congress and Senate have no real INPUT from our Military just papers and Reports. I say get teh people from Washington , D.C. out of the offices adn from behind desks and take them out to the Military sites and let them see first hand SpySatelite Photos, real equipment not just ours but everythign we have of everybody elses–THEN let them sit down and plan our future as a nation! May God Bless America because IF we don't keep Australia nd Japan Friends we may need all the power from Heaven on our Earth (Revelations)

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"Kansas" Angell March 9, 2011 at 9:43 pm

IF ONLY Australia would allow me to live there for the rest of my life (I'm 58), I'd go and die there as far as I am concerned. They are about the best people on this earth I have ever met. At 39 I retired from the US Navy with my 20 years but that 39 years included part of my fathers 23 years in the Navy traveling. I can tell you that with the exception of Europe, the Friendliest people are in Australia, and that includes 48 (not counting N&S Dakota as states I have lived in. Yes I like Rural Kansas, Kentucky, and a few places…but Nothing overall compares.
We OWE our Loyal Allies more than just empty promises of support and aircraft for sale.

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PacificSentinel March 10, 2011 at 10:19 am

As far as this Aussie is concerned, you’re welcome any time mate!

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skynet March 9, 2011 at 11:03 pm

hey did u know that japan let aegis aaw tech go to china??

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blight March 9, 2011 at 11:18 pm

"U.S. intelligence officials say China stole the technology for the Aegis battle management system by setting up a front company in the United States that became a subcontractor for the Aegis system manufacturer." http://www.worldtribune.com/worldtribune/05/front

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FtD March 9, 2011 at 11:28 pm

maybe he's the one carried the blueprints from tokyo to beijing

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blight March 10, 2011 at 12:13 am

It's unlikely Japan had actual blueprints. If you were working as a subcontractor, on the other hand…

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FtD March 9, 2011 at 11:25 pm

agree, US + allies need more F22 for TACAIR in the regional arms race. To sit back with only 187 planes leave westpac nations (Aust, Taiwan, Japan, S Korea & even Singapore) who rely on US equipment very vulnerable when eventually Russia/China produce their own 5th gen fighters.

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golani51 March 10, 2011 at 8:53 am

True on the UCAVs but the 'real'; pilots dont want to lose their grip on the chick- pulling power. More weapons, no loss of pilots, higher g- force manouvers, …..what more do you want.

Israel is not the enemy here. After all, doesn't the US sell to Egypt (including illegally selling US APCs containing what was then state-of-the-art NVGs. They certainly helped Aphganistan and Al Queida.

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chuteok March 10, 2011 at 9:54 am

Saddened that our chief ally the USA would not trust Australia with the F-22 . It tries to guard the most dangerous {in terms of strategic} waters in the World.The F-35 , what a load of crap…on time on budegt { have shown what US Mil Industry has ben like for some time now…down the toilet plus they have only grudginly given Codes}..what a crock of crap. Give us some more Super Hornets , we will make do as always downunder.

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Stephen Favell April 20, 2014 at 2:28 am

It's more political than that. LM doesnt want the F-22 exported because it cuts into their more profitable F-35 sales. I mean honestly, if you could buy the F-22, would you bother with the F-35?

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mike March 12, 2011 at 3:38 pm

Japan also gave our Computer Numerical Control technology to China a while back,
which allows for better precision machining (Quieter Sub Propellers etc.).

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shawn1999 March 17, 2011 at 1:13 pm

Quite ripping on Israel. Everyone knows that if the Chinese want data, all they have to do is bribe one of the scientists (who will get at most 15 years, if I recall correctly), or just cyber-walk into the Senate's computer's and take what they want from there.

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blight March 8, 2011 at 2:32 pm

If they decide their stealth fighter doesn't need supercruise and thrust vector in a dogfight, then it's just a matter of designing a low RCS airframe with good avionics with internal missile bays or stealthy mounting hardware + stealthy missiles.

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Belesari March 8, 2011 at 4:36 pm

Not yet. But…
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hy%C5%ABga_class_hel
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tarawa_class_amphibi

The next "Helicopter destroyer" is going to be even bigger at 19,000t's. If japan wants to they could easily build a carrier to match the french.

So if they want the F-35B….then they would have a place to fly it from.

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blight March 8, 2011 at 6:11 pm

I've posted on this before. It was a corporation passing ballistic missile data, and the company subsequently got a piddly 14m fine during the Bush years.

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Joe Schmoe March 8, 2011 at 9:18 pm

You also offered to give them arming systems.

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Jay March 9, 2011 at 3:00 pm

Japan just needs something to able to shoot down Chinese fighters, sink Chinese ships, and perhaps hit land based radars and C3 sites near the coast.

The JAF doesn't need all the capabilities of the F22, and could probably get away with an updated and stealthized F16 type fighter. It would certainly have to be bigger to accomodate internal weapons bays, but significantly smaller and lighter than a F22.

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asdf March 9, 2011 at 5:48 pm

they will get a couple (20?) of planes for free basically

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@Earlydawn March 9, 2011 at 10:29 pm
Praetorian March 9, 2011 at 7:32 pm
@Earlydawn March 9, 2011 at 10:29 pm

(And before you jump down my throat, I'm not saying that the suspension is still in effect. I'm just pointing out that it *did* happen.)

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Joe Schmoe March 10, 2011 at 4:46 am

I remember that incident, turned out to be a big fuss over nothing.

The U.S. was worried that Israel was upgrading the drones for China when in fact it was just maintenance. It was promptly solved a short time later. After that Israel signed on as a participant to the F-35.

I apologize for jumping on you so fast.

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PacificSentinel March 10, 2011 at 10:36 am

Had to split this as it wouldn't accept it as one post
——————————

And in direct response to your post see the following from the same Wiki page.

“In September 2002, Air Force leaders changed the Raptor’s designation to F/A-22. The new designation, which mimicked that of the Navy’s F/A-18 Hornet, was intended to highlight plans to give the Raptor a ground-attack capability amid intense debate over the relevance of the expensive air-superiority jet. This was later changed back to simply F-22 on 12 December 2005. On 15 December 2005, the F-22A entered service.”

"was intended to highlight plans to give the Raptor a ground-attack capability "

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PacificSentinel March 10, 2011 at 10:43 am

Lastly, as "blight" pointed out above, the Raptor didn't get a LIMITED ground attack ability until 2009, 3 years after it was rejected by the AUS government.

Personally, I'd love to have the Raptor in our arsenal!

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Joe Schmoe March 10, 2011 at 12:03 pm

Good posts.

Though I understand the Australian position if it was purely about the lack of Maritime strike capabilities. My question then is, what maritime strike weapons does the F-35A carry?

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PacificSentinel March 10, 2011 at 10:17 pm

Kongsberg NSM anti-ship missile.

From Wiki
——————
According to Kongsberg, this "multi-role NSM" is the only anti-ship missile that will fit inside the F-35's internal bays.[4] Lockheed Martin and Kongsberg have signed a joint-marketing agreement for this air-launched version of the NSM, as well as an agreement committing both parties to integrating the JSM on the F-35 platform.[5][6] The project is funded by Norway and Australia.[7] Kongsberg signed a contract for the first phase of development of the JSM in April, 2009, which is scheduled for completion within 18 months.[8]

Improved features for the Joint Strike Missile include:
Ability to attack sea and land based targets
Aerial launch platform (F-35)
Improved range over NSM to 240km [2]
Long-term, production start in 2013

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