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F-35 Image Porn

by John Reed on July 26, 2011

Here’s a great image of the first F-35A Joint Strike Fighter to enter non-test service with the U.S. Air Force. The plane is on approach to its home with the 33rd Fighter Wing at Eglin Air Force Base, Fl last week. Less than a week later on July 20, the service received the second production F-35A designated to enter operational service with the 33rd FW — which serves as a dedicated F-35 training wing.

Eglin is home to the F-35 school house that will train JSF pilots and maintainers from around the globe beginning this fall.

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{ 55 comments… read them below or add one }

Black Owl July 26, 2011 at 12:54 pm

The F/A-18E Super Hornet is still sexier than the JSF.

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Jayson July 26, 2011 at 2:11 pm

agreed

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crackedlenses July 26, 2011 at 6:58 pm

The JSF is stealthier and more Raptorish; score over Hornet in my book…..

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Eric Waggle July 26, 2011 at 7:10 pm

Sorry, nothing will ever be as sexy as the A-10.

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Solomon July 26, 2011 at 1:23 pm

you're smoking crack.

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Black Owl July 26, 2011 at 1:54 pm

Think about it. The Super Hornet can do ANYTHING in the tactical fighter spectrum. ;)

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Ben July 26, 2011 at 2:10 pm

Except effectively evade radar.

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chaos0xomega July 26, 2011 at 2:57 pm

Not to throw support at the F-18 or anything (I think its a mediocre aircraft), but I know one thing that it can do that the F-35 can't: Fly without an engine….

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Black Owl July 26, 2011 at 4:00 pm

Somehow I don't think anyone got the idea that my last statement was in fact a joke with a double meaning. The "can do ANYTHING" phrase was a reference to… well, never mind.

Anyway, the Super Hornet with international roadmap upgrades is going to be able to rival the JSF in stealth from the forward quarter. The EA-18G and the new version of the HARM, the AARGM, will be able to blind or dispatch enemy radar just fine. The JSF can't hold the AARGM internally and once you mount ordinance externally it basically becomes a REALLY expensive F-16. The Super Hornet with international roadmap upgrades can equal or outperform the JSF. The only reason we are going to by F-35s is because we have already sold our financial soul for them. The Navy doesn't always make good decisions and it is easily influenced by politics and the budget.

I don't wear sandals by the way.

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Black Owl July 26, 2011 at 4:09 pm

Correction: buy* F-35s.
I'm not perfect.

@Earlydawn July 26, 2011 at 4:20 pm

Is there any hard data on the Hornet's RCS from a forward aspect? Boeing says that it has reduced signature up front, but I've never seen a statistic. Either way, I doubt it'll be comparable to the F-35's.

brian July 26, 2011 at 9:53 pm

Doesn't matter, without an internal bay for missiles, all that stealthiness does you little good

IKnowIT July 26, 2011 at 1:33 pm

Nice pic. I predict the F-35 will be a sucess.

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tDauntlessCelt July 26, 2011 at 2:09 pm

Hey DT! You know what would be awesome?

Have a link to high-res pics that you use.

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Orion July 26, 2011 at 9:24 pm
Mark O'Connell July 26, 2011 at 2:43 pm

Do the pilots ever just stomp on it? I am not sure I could fly an airplane without making it give all its got.

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WareWolf July 26, 2011 at 3:44 pm

"Sexier" does not necessarily equal "more effective." I agree, the lines of the Super Hornet are more graceful than those of the F-35…but I know which one I'd rather have in a fight.

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beaver July 28, 2011 at 12:04 pm

yeah the hornet stealth only goes so far payload gets the job done.

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Billy July 26, 2011 at 4:00 pm

Why didn’t JSF come with THrust Vectorring Nozzels? Stealth VS Supermanervability?

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Tomcatter July 26, 2011 at 4:20 pm

It does come with Thrust Vectoring nozzles. F-35B

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blight July 26, 2011 at 5:22 pm

And by that definition the Harrier would count too…

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@Earlydawn July 26, 2011 at 4:21 pm

Cost reduction. The F-35 is multimission, but it's really geared towards strike.

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SMSgt Mac July 27, 2011 at 10:24 pm

1. If you need thrust vectoring you've already made many, many, mistakes and possibly deserve what is going to happen to you.
2. F-22 thrust vectoring was a brilliant marketing ploy Lockheed used to sell their ATF to the turn-and-burn-is-all crowd. TV was not an ATF/F-22 requirement either. More of a dubious 'bonus'.
3. As it relates to the F-35: some added weight, much added cost, very little payoff especially for the B and C. F-35 weapons can engage 360 degrees: no need to turn completely to place your nose on the target.

Thrust Vectoring on the AV-8 is called 'Viffing' and the Marines had the wild idea to try it first and it worked – all much to the surprise of the Brits. As the AV-8 is subsonic 'Viffing' comes in handy for keeping your nose pointed at your opponent. The ACMI range debriefing room for the Utah Test and Training Range used to have a great recording they would show visitors where a Harrier 2-ship shot up a flight of F-16s trying to get past them. The lead Harrier, 'viffing' like a demon even shot down his own wingman when the wingman slid in front of his shot. Great flying.

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Chuck Reynolds July 26, 2011 at 5:25 pm

want: link to full size version not small jpg. :/

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David July 26, 2011 at 5:31 pm

They can't kill you if they can't see you. No plane even with thrust vectoring can out maneuver a missile. The human body can only take so much g force and a missile has no pilot.

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beaver July 28, 2011 at 12:11 pm

are u stupid. missiles are out maneuvered with ease it may be painful but it can be done, and regardless if it had stealth or not when you are locked by another ac you know it by the warning that starts screaming in your ear.

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Pdizzle July 26, 2011 at 8:06 pm

Does anyone have any idea what the contraption is up under its nose?

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blight July 26, 2011 at 8:56 pm

A guess:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:F-35_EOTS.jpeg

"Electro-optical target sensor (EOTS) on a mock-up of the F-35. Photo taken at RIAT 2007."

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John Moore July 26, 2011 at 10:47 pm

So when will we see the first F-22 vs F-35 show down?

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John July 26, 2011 at 10:55 pm

How is Eglin pronounced?

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Riceball July 27, 2011 at 10:09 am

I believe, egg lin.

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awesome July 26, 2011 at 10:59 pm

Go airforce beat j-20.

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citanon July 27, 2011 at 1:41 am

So, does the F-35 have the same Oxygen generation system as the F-22?

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HQYONE July 27, 2011 at 1:52 am

Stopping F-22 production is a mistake. The number of F-22 is too small to ensure the supervises of USA in Air

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HQYONE July 27, 2011 at 1:55 am

The price of F-22 and F-35 is similar, I can't believe that !!!! Who can tell me what are the advantages of F-35 OVER F-22.

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joe July 27, 2011 at 6:34 am

Avionics fit is newer, I think.

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Gregory Savage July 27, 2011 at 10:41 am

Also has irist and can fire aim-9x while the f-22 can't just to name a couple.

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SMSgt Mac July 27, 2011 at 10:07 pm

Hey HQYONE:
F-35 very big "Ju Ju". Ju Ju SOOO big it take many Chengdu J-20s to just slow down little. Cost almost free when making in full Go-Go, Soooo cheap Taiwan buy one for every pilot. Big Ju Ju make all J-20 pilot Mǔqīn cry. So sad. Sorry People's Troll.

(Geez, where's the "Troll Quality Low" Alarm button? )

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HQYONE July 27, 2011 at 2:02 am

F-35 Fighters Now Double the Cost, I think someone should be thrown into jail. It means the government run with low efficiency and some corruptions occurred.

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Matrix_3692 July 27, 2011 at 2:17 am

is it possible that someday, at some airshow, J-20 and F-35 meet each other?

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joe July 27, 2011 at 6:36 am

"What are you?"
"A knock-off F-22 Raptor that doesn't work terribly well. What are you?"
"Funny you should say that…."

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MarineOne July 27, 2011 at 7:10 am

f-22 vs f-35, each one has its own advantages due to the fact one plane has the capabilities ot communicate with multiple platforms, the other does not. One is just awesome, the other can eat a d**k and was a complete waste of taxpayer money. Yes, the f-22 shouldn't even have existed on paper.

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Tee July 27, 2011 at 9:04 pm

No the other way around, the F-35 should be canceled before we waste any more money down that sink hole. It will be cut along with the LCS during these budget cuts. Thank God!!!!

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usafstars July 27, 2011 at 7:15 am

John,
It's pronounced Egg Lin

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Matt July 27, 2011 at 10:40 am

contraption under the nose is EOTS – Electro-Optical Targeting System
http://www.lockheedmartin.com/data/assets/1232.pd

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Nail 227 July 28, 2011 at 12:42 am

These planes are only stealthy at a given radar frequency. HF,UHF and L Band radars will lite up these invisible planes. The SA-2 and SA-4 used the Phang Song radar which operated at L band. The S-300 uses X-band frequencies which will have its effective range reduced but will be deadly within 20 km.
The F-35 is a recycling of the McNamara's F111 concept. The Navy chiefs were astute enough to turn down the F-111.
Drone based fighters will out manuever, cost a lot less and no human casualties.
My comments are based of ~5 years of Vietnam experience,~20 years of radar system engineer, and over 5000 flight hours.

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William C. July 28, 2011 at 12:49 am

The stealth of the F-35 and F-22 was designed with X-band radars in mind. Doesn't mean other bands were ignored however. As the Global Hawk shows, drones can be screwed up just as easily.

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Cheesed July 26, 2011 at 3:37 pm

Where does capability factor into this? Anywhere? I mean, Black Owl started a discussion on aesthetics, and immediately displayed awful taste. He probably wears socks with sandals.

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Black Owl July 26, 2011 at 4:27 pm

Boeing stated that the RCS of the F-15SE from the front was equal to that of an F-35. The Super Hornet already has more RCS reduction features than the Eagle. With conformal fuel tanks and a stealthy weapons pod it will be very similar, even better, than the F-15SE.

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Black Owl July 26, 2011 at 11:12 pm

Did you even read my last post? It has a stealthy weapons pod. The International Road Map upgrades include a centerline mounted stealthy pod that can hold two AMRAAMs and two bombs, the exact same weapons configuration as the stealthy JSF, or an assortment of other weapons.

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citanon July 27, 2011 at 1:37 am

Boeing could be smoking crack. OR, it could be trying to sell a product to skeptical customers. Take your pick. ;)

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Black Owl July 27, 2011 at 12:13 pm

Or Lockheed could be trying to suck up billions of US dollars by selling overpriced lower performing machines with promises of fixing its flaws.

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@Earlydawn July 27, 2011 at 4:39 pm

The International Road Map is a sales plan. It doesn't exist. There are no customers for it. There is no funding beyond the financing that Boeing is putting up to pitch it. It doesn't exist.

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Black Owl July 27, 2011 at 9:24 pm

It doesn't matter if they haven't actually made the design. It's the concept. The technology can be easily made and is readily available. The Super Hornet international upgrades would give it the capability to rival the JSF at a fraction of the price. The fact that we are buying F-35s and blowing billions of dollars on these planes when simply upgrading our old ones would give us nearly the same performance is a waste.

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SMSgt Mac July 29, 2011 at 12:31 am

$771B? Your math is as poor as your logic. Fearsome avatar though.

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