Home » Air » Air Force » F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Hits Max Speed

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Hits Max Speed

by John Reed on November 7, 2011

Here’s a little something that was tucked in at the bottom of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter flight test update that Lockheed Martin sent out last Friday.  An F-35A — test jet AF-1 — out of Edwards Air Force Base in California hit the JSF’s max speed of Mach 1.6 for the first time on Oct. 26. Pretty cool.

Click here to see the entire update.

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{ 97 comments… read them below or add one }

Max November 7, 2011 at 4:44 pm

Only mach 1.6? Sounds like a slow boat to China! Whatever happened to Mach 2 and beyond? If this thing ever gets in a battle with any number of foreign fighters, it's probably toast. They'll run rings around it.

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So? November 7, 2011 at 8:37 pm

Good enough for the lo part the hi-lo mix.

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Black Owl November 7, 2011 at 9:02 pm

I thought about this too. The MiG-21 has a max speed of mach 2. The F-35 can only hold two AIM-120s in a stealthy configuration. If one F-35 faces 3 MiG-21s it can easily kill two, then it runs out of ammo. After it runs out of ammo the MiG-21 can out run it and kill it with advanced Russian versions of the R-73, that are now proliferating in the arms market.

Late versions of the MiG-21 (like its Chinese counterpart that is still in production the J-7) have a cost that does not exceed $18 million. If you mass produced these in a three to one ratio against the JSF numbers then you would force the JSF operators to mount weapons on them externally to give them a fair chance, eliminating their stealth abilities. Considering that you could make a whole squadron and thensome of J-7s for every JSF, those are bad odds.

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Tiger_38 November 7, 2011 at 9:31 pm

Can the MiG-21 do mach 2 with external stores?

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Black Owl November 7, 2011 at 11:06 pm

I don't know actually. It doesn't have to go mach 2 though, just faster than mach 1.6, which I am pretty sure it can easily beat with two R-73s loaded.

MiG-29 ($29 million) and the J-10 ($28 million) can reach mach 2 if their armed with two R-73 or PL-8 missiles.

So? November 7, 2011 at 11:54 pm

Doesn't have enough fuel for it to matter anyway.

PMI November 7, 2011 at 11:22 pm

The F-35 can carry 4 AMRAAMS internally currently & 6 once the Block 3 integration is done.

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Black Owl November 7, 2011 at 11:41 pm

The Block 3 should not even be mentioned because that is too far out and billions of dollars away. A Block III Super Hornet with a centerline mounted weapons pod and conformal fuel tanks matches the range of the JSF, comes close to matching it's stealth from the forward quarter, and also holds 4 AMRAAMS. Not only that, but the production line is already open and it would still save us a great deal of money. Why don't we just use those?

So? November 7, 2011 at 11:53 pm

4 is Block III. I've only seen 6 on fan art. When you have 2, PK is critical.

Darrell Friauf February 16, 2014 at 8:55 pm

you r out of your mind….the mig would never see the 35

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NorCalHal November 9, 2011 at 2:21 pm

Only the SR-71 can outrun bullets and missiles. Situational awareness through advanced sensors, communications and agility will be more significant than speed alone.

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m167a1 November 7, 2011 at 4:59 pm

Speed isn't everything, but you miss it when its not there. Avionics, maneuverability and acceleration will be even more important.

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tiger November 8, 2011 at 7:15 pm

When a SAM is on your six, you might like to run….

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M167A1 November 8, 2011 at 7:32 pm

True to a degree. Energy can be life, particularly in the exfil.
But even a M 2.5 F-15 is't flying about on afterburner all the time. Nor is it all that fast compared to your M 4 or 6 SAM.

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blight November 9, 2011 at 8:49 am

Trust in your countermeasures, for the missile is inevitably faster than your aircraft.

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Uncle Bill November 7, 2011 at 5:30 pm

Considering it's mission mach 2 is a pointless waste of fuel. And if, somehow, a lone F35 ended up far from the ground forces it was supporting and facing any number of foreign fighters, perhaps the world's entire supply of 5th gen enemy fighters appearing together all at once, my money is still on the F35.

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itfunk November 8, 2011 at 4:51 am

A strike fighter that cant do the strike part and cant do the fighter part.

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Mat November 8, 2011 at 5:02 pm

Forgot to mention B version having no gun C version limited to 6g and even slower

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marc November 7, 2011 at 9:43 pm

Was this with the nose pitched down 30 degrees and the pipes lit?

Call me old school, but the *ehem* alternative has TWO engines and can almost do that without afterburners.

If I were in combat, heavy seas, hard IFR, I might want to have more than ONE propulsion unit….

Just me being paranoid.

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robert132 November 8, 2011 at 6:11 pm

Not paranoid marc. Operating from a ship far from shore is not an environment where the pilot of a single engine aircraft would want to have that engine suddenly develop problems. A twin engine aircraft would stand a better chance of getting back to the ship where the pilot of that single engine bird had better be confident of his swimming ability.

I was a destroyerman, SAR missions looking for ditched crews were not my favorite by any stretch.

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DKing5454 November 7, 2011 at 10:27 pm

"Mach 1.6" ???

Let me guess… with a tail-wind, right?

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JRL November 8, 2011 at 12:12 am

Kudos to the F-35 and Lockmart for achieving the blazing velocity of M 1.6 in under twelve years from the first flight of the JSF prototype.

Lockheed really has come a long way in the half century since 16 May 1958 when USAF Capt Walter W. Irwin flying the YF-104A set a world speed record of 1.404.19 mph [Mach 2+]over a 15/25 kilometer course at Edwards AFB a little over four years after the first flight of the Starfighter…

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Oudin November 8, 2011 at 4:05 am

It will be hit by Mig 29 or J-10 at mach 2 with armed R-73 or PL 8,i think good news for China.

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Lance November 8, 2011 at 4:07 am

That's sad in speed the F-22 is just as pitiful. Look at the last generations main fighters. The F-15 can run past them at Mach 2.5 a F-14 at mach 2. A 60s vintage F-4 is faster at Mach 2. A 50s vintage F-105 can zoom past them. Stealth is nice to have but when every MiG from a MiG-17 in a dive or threw a modern MiG-29 or SU-27 can zoom past you in speed you wont survive get more speed and maneuverability that's more important than stealth.

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Jerry November 8, 2011 at 7:18 pm

Really ? So if the bad guy gets missile lock the little bit of extra speed is going to let you outrun it ? Same goes with finding it in the air with radar. I remember when the first pair of F-22s made it to Elmendorf. Shortly thereafter they did a mock search and destroy between an F-22 and an entire team of F-15C/D/E that were currently assigned there. The final tally was F-22 10, F-15s 0. If they can't find you to begin with then speed is pointless. As far as maneuverability goes, the Raptor will run circles around any jet aircraft on the planet.

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itfunk November 8, 2011 at 4:56 am

A slow speed means the F-35 is at a big disadvantage in the BVR fight. The F-35 pilot is really in the horns of a dilemma he knows that the enemy missiles will arrive first and with more energy that he cant out-maneuver because he has poor aerodynamic performance, but if he turns and runs he abandons stealth and puts up a bright kill me sign for all to see.

In the F-35 stealth is a blanket that lets you get into trouble and then disappears when you need it most leaving the hapless pilot exposed and vulnerable.

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Thomas L. Nielsen November 9, 2011 at 8:59 am

"….that he cant out-maneuver because he has poor aerodynamic performance…."

"….In the F-35 stealth is a blanket that lets you get into trouble and then disappears when you need it most…."

Care to name a source and/or background for those statements?

Regards & all,

Thomas L. Nielsen
Luxembourg

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ziv November 8, 2011 at 7:28 am

I don't know the answer to this so it is a question not a statement, but didn't the F4 and other 3rd gen jets, have trouble going faster than Mach 1 with stores? I thought that it wasn't just the fuel gulping that kept them from flying faster than Mach 1 inbound in Vietnam, but the fact that it might damage the bombs or the AC. Were the 4th Gen jets able to attack at speeds over Mach 1? I know the 4th Gen could egress faster, but I didn't know the speed at which they attacked during the Iraq wars.
Second question, with the PF135 generating 28k to 43k pounds of thrust dry and wet, respectively, and PW says they can uprate newer F135's to the area of 50k pounds wet, will it finally be able to supercruise without afterburners?

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Stormcharger November 8, 2011 at 11:26 am

Correct. The F4 was originally designed as an interceptor. That means it's mission was to go very fast, deliver it's radar homing missiles(it had no gun), and return to base because it was now out of fuel. It's the reason the four missile hard points on the F4 were blended into the body, so drag was reduced and make it capable of attaining it's Mach 2.2 top speed. The basic premise was to fly fast, engage the enemy very far away, and return. Unfortunately the actual target it was designed to defeat was a Russian bomber, which none of the planes designed this way were ever used for. But when carrying stores under the wings, even drop tanks, drag was increased by as much as 60% depending on the load and increase in weight as well. It's like strapping 1000lbs to to the roof of your 2000lb Honda, how fast can you go?

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Flyboy November 8, 2011 at 8:36 am

Wouldn't it be great if the F-35 was cover for a better bird being built that was in fact top secret? Like, hey enemy, here's our specs, plan accordingly!?

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blight November 8, 2011 at 2:12 pm

It might account for the severe cost overruns-hiding two programs in the budget of one. However, it requires some serious OPSEC to do so.

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Flyboy November 8, 2011 at 4:13 pm

It worked for Denver Airport with it's "underground facilities?"

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Corky November 8, 2011 at 9:31 am

Frequent reader, first-time commenter: Are the usual commenters on this site predominantly Boeing employees, people who just finished reading Red Storm Rising, flight simulator fanatics, Fox News fans, or perhaps all of the above? I have flown a fair amount of strike-fighter training and operational missions in recent history and can't recall needing or wanting much more than Mach 1. There are a number of reasons that aircraft are no longer being built with Mach 2+ top ends, but the primary one is that high top airframe speed is largely irrelevant, even in BVR engagements.

The F-35 program certainly has some substantial flaws, but its recent progress is great, particularly in light of the seemingly unattainable goals from which it was born. The Super Hornet is a terrific platform, but anyone arguing that it represents a long-term answer without a successor is being horribly myopic. JSF's successes and failures are the foundation of future aerospace innovations despite structural and procedural problems in our research, development and procurement systems. I understand that the web commenting space is the domain of strong opinions, but it seems like this site should feature some better reasoned commenting devoid of clear agendas. Alas, probably a pipe-dream.

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Gellyfeesh November 15, 2011 at 11:31 am

This comment makes way too much sense to be on this thread.

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Ray McMullen April 19, 2014 at 7:47 am

Thank you for a reasonable comment. As a Canadian looking to educate myself at whether or not this is the plane for us, and so far I do believe it is, it is difficult ton sort through all the noise and propaganda and arrive a logical conclusion. Comments like this help.

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Vulpine November 8, 2011 at 9:58 am

Anybody remember the "cranked arrow" F-16? How about that canard-winged F-15? How many of you know there's a semi-stealth F-15 on the production lines now for foreign sales?

Really, we don't need billion-dollar-each jets when the current platforms are still eminently useable. Sure, the F-22 is superior, but you can't really expect 250 of them to replace nearly a thousand F-15s–you just don't have the presence when you deploy them that you do with a larger fleet. The same holds true for the limited number of F-35s expected when they're trying to replace three times that number of F-16s. Yes, the F-22 and F-35 are cutting-edge, but they still need reliable, capable backups when it comes out to an all-out shooting war.

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ziv November 8, 2011 at 10:08 am

Vulpine, you just mentioned a program I wish the USAF would buy. The F15SE is a near perfect, semi-stealthy aircraft that would make a great low-tech complement to the F22 fleet.
Have a strike package led by 2 F22's in communication with a squadron of F15SE's in trail. The F22's would be able to intercept any aggressor fighters in an ambush type attack while the F15's strike the target and egress with the first element of F22's handing off the overwatch to a fresh element with a full load of Air to Air weapons to protect the F15's as they get out of the area. 4 F22's and 12 to 16 F15SE's would make a formidable mix of stealthy and semi-stealthy (by US standards and much better than semi by the standards of most air forces) aircraft at a bargain price compared to the usual US aircraft prices over the past decade or two.
Obviously the same technique could be used with a mix of F22's and F35's, but the F15's allow for a larger number of strike aircraft in a slightly more permissive area.

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Matrix3692 November 8, 2011 at 10:52 am

you must be joking, right? using F-15SE in a strike mission?
do you know how much ordinance a Silent Eagle carries?
their weapon pods can only carry four air to air missiles, or maybe a couple of SDBs, what effect do you expect they can do to a heavy defended/fortified area?
Silent Eagles are basically F-15s that trade firepower for stealth, and with downgraded firepower, you might have to re-think your choice of strike fighters.

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ziv November 8, 2011 at 10:55 am

Matrix, where did you get your info on the F15SE as a strike fighter? I was under the impression that they could carry 2 500 lb bombs or 2 1000 lb bombs or 4 250 lb SDB's. Is this article incorrect? Or are you saying that the strike package couldn't be mixed up with some F15SE's carrying air to air and some carrying air to ground?
http://www.f-15e.info/joomla/export-variants/f-15

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Matrix3692 November 9, 2011 at 10:25 am

Well, I am under that impression from a article that comment the SE’s possible performance when the Silent Eagle make it’s debut, of chose that’s a few years ago, and i haven’t been putting much interest on the SE since then, and i was occupied by my university studies lately.
Unless there’s some radical improvements on the SE’s stealth weapon pods, the size that i saw on the picture and base on the author’s comments, it can barely squeeze a SDB each pod, let alone a 1000-pound class ordinance.
by the way, the article that i read is from the taiwanese magazine “Defense Technology Monthly”(i forgot which month it was)

William C. November 9, 2011 at 5:48 am

The F-15SE isn't low-tech, or cheap. In fact, it is right up with the F-22 on the cost and complexity scale. The same is true of any F-15 variant. It is a large aircraft and requires plenty of work and money to keep flying.

I don't know about the whole F-15SE, but I'd love to see features from it (avionics, etc.) integrated into the current F-15E fleet. However no F-15 will be replacing cheaper aircraft like the F-16 or basic F/A-18 anytime soon.

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tiger November 9, 2011 at 9:45 pm

The F-22's can't even get their O2 system straight. Till that happens, they can not fight anybody.

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tiger November 9, 2011 at 9:51 pm

You still have a boneyard full of planes to back you up.

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kenny wall November 10, 2011 at 12:09 am

there is currently only 1 modified f-15 silent eagle & its a proposed aircraft design model that has no production line nor dye tools. vulpine

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Tim November 8, 2011 at 10:24 am

Most of the planes that claimed to fly Mach 2, actually can achieve it in a few seconds before exhausting its own fuel or engine overheat. The Soviet longed claimed their Mig-25 could easily surpass Mach 3, which made our guys nervous for many years until one of their pilots landed one in Japan. It turned out, the Mig-25 would have a hard time maintaining Mach 2.5, if not less. One attempt to show off over Israel caused the Mig-25's engine to explode.

It seems the Mach 1.6 for the JSF is a milestone for what it could do at that speed. I truly doubt if that is actually the "max" speed. Who would be stupid enough to advertise your weapon's range before fielding it? The important thing is how long it can sustain at high speed and whether your enemy could see it coming.

By the way, the Mig-21 doesn't have the radar to get it out of the kill zone, much less finding the F-35.

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Christian November 8, 2011 at 10:55 am

Completely agree. The military isn't going to just give Opposing Forces the complete specs on their equipment. It's similar to how the top speed of Nimitz and Ford carriers is classified. I guarantee that Mach 1.6 is not the F-35's actual top speed.

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Mat November 8, 2011 at 5:17 pm

Ok what is up comparing it to a mig 21 a plane designed it the 50s

Mig-25 speed is more than enough to keep it out of harms way ,had a radar with that much power it was hard to jam and it carried missles with large enough warhead that a near mis would still bring down any fighter, folow up Mig 31 had words first PESA radar and a digital datalink that most fighters still dont have inclouding F22

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tiger November 9, 2011 at 9:54 pm

In a world where one Army private can leak info to Wikileaks. Nothing is that secret anymore. Mach 1.6 is likely the top speed.

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Ryan November 8, 2011 at 10:27 am

Why are they just now hitting top speed for the first time? Isn’t that something you test a little more early on, like before the first one is delivered?

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blight November 8, 2011 at 2:11 pm

Shows you how far behind we are.

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tiger November 8, 2011 at 7:18 pm

SPeed & altitude matters.

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SMSgt Mac November 9, 2011 at 10:49 am

On the off-chance this is a serious question– no, this is not "something you test a little more early on".
All modern fighter designs are intentionally aerodynamically unstable to enhance maneuverability (it makes the plane WANT to change directions). Software is used to keep the pointy end going the direction the pilot desires. A conservative flight envelope is first selected where confidence is high that there will be no untoward behaviors. The envelope is bounded by weight, altitude, and airspeed. Within that envelope, progressively more aggressive maneuvering is conducted and the performance and flying quality data is gathered and assessed. If needed, software is refined to ensure desired aircraft behaviors are maintained, and the results are also used to refine predictive tools for further expansion. The boundaries of weight, altitude and speed are methodically expanded until the required flight envelope is reached. If there is utility seen in exceeding the specifications, then further expansion may occur.

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Sosuphoenix November 8, 2011 at 12:29 pm

After Vietnam it was found that fights between aircraft happen at around Mach 1. You can not fire a missile at Mach 2. Also guns are useless at Mach 2

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Val November 8, 2011 at 2:45 pm

As a former F-4 fleet and BuWepsRepStLouis driver (Navy) with over 2500 hours in type, I would have been thrilled to have a gun ILO of the POS Bravo model Sidewinders and the even worse, Sparrow II which was not much use except to smooth out the airflow on the underside of the aircraft…..

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finish strong November 8, 2011 at 6:56 pm

from finish strong : i thank you everyone who serves and has . what can we do to make this country better ????

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FtD November 8, 2011 at 10:59 pm

I'd rather trade 2 F35 for 1 F22 & 1 F18E/F/G, F22 mops up enemy fighters, F18G HARM Sam/radar sites and E/F does air support with F22 CAP above. At least USAF won't feel too much pain when a superbug is down during sortie than downing F35

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Tyson Rees November 9, 2011 at 11:03 pm

Many, many internet aeronautical engineers, test pilots, and military tacticians on this site, I see.

Huge mach numbers are so 1950's.
They expand flight envelopes a little more carefully than when YF-100s went supersonic on the first flight…..followed by lots of crashes of early production versions.
If we listened to all of the so called 'experts' throughout the years, we'd still be flying F-86's, (but I'm sure they'd be really slick with upgraded radar absorbing paint intead of 50's era polished aluminum)

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CaptEric November 10, 2011 at 1:39 am

Seems almost everyone has missed the point and is clueless as to the mission and role this A/C is designed for. Clearly misunderstood by the uninformed. Speed was never the issue for this equipment. A note aside; I would venture a guess that none of the anti-JSF-35 respondents here have ANY clue as to the ACTUAL electronics package on-board or what it is capable of. Nor will they for another 8-15 years. Nuff said about that.
Just to make a point: in 1964 when the F-5 was introduced, it encountered similar naysayers. No one of those uninformed knew what we needed it for. Similar comparisons were made. 47 years later, it is still in service here and abroad serving in roles no one expected and still outmaneuvering modern day A/C.
And BTW: Can your F-22 take off and land vertically?
The JSF-35B CAN. What would you have the SUBSONIC Harrier replaced with? I'm sure the Marines will LOVE this A/C.

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TexasJester November 11, 2011 at 9:18 pm

A side note, probably a bit off topic, but for what it’s worth.. I was in the Navy stationed at NAS Cecil Field, just west of Jacksonville, FL. I was an avionics tech, assigned to an A-6 squadron. This was in April 1985.

A couple of pilots were showing off the NEWLY INTRODUCED F/A-18 Hornet. One hotdogged this beautiful new aircraft off the runway – full throttle, full flaps, full brake – and wheel-hopping a bit, like a thoroughbred chomping at the bit in the gates. Released the brakes, hit afterburner. Front wheel off the ground in less than 100 feet, rear tires off in another 100 feet – landing gear POP into place. Aircraft goes VERTICLE – hit Mach at less than 6,000 feet!! (I knew one of the ATCs that in the tower that day.) And was STILL accelerating – going ballistic!!

That day will always stick with me. I don’t care what new aircraft they cone up with, it will never make an impression on me like the NEW F/A-18 Hornet did on this young airdale that day….

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Mike January 11, 2012 at 8:59 am

I call BS on fully airborne in 200 ft.

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Mike Hickman November 12, 2011 at 2:21 pm

Hmmmmm….The F-106, is still the fastest, single engine fighter of all time? I guess the emphasis is no longer on speed, but avionics, eh?

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Samuel Heller November 12, 2011 at 2:21 pm

The F35 is just the shake down version. The real Joint Strike Fighter is a replacement for the VTOL Harrier. Sitting stopped in flight and then off in attack at 1.6/2.0 mach sounds like a really nasty thing.

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william November 12, 2011 at 11:44 pm

I can tell you one thing. I work at northrop grumman. and build both aircraft. The f-35 and f-18 And that there is a absolute need for both, until the f-35 is produced in number we need f-18 to defend our country and our oil in the middle east. Plus the fact russia and china are on there way to 5th gen fighter production and selling them to country's that would use them in a heart beat against us.

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Mike January 11, 2012 at 9:11 am

Your not building both aircraft. Northrop does provide major components to each aircraft, as do many other sub contractors. Just because you pop rivets in one section of one of those aircraft, does not make you an expert on the need of one or both aircraft. I can also tell you that you personally do not work on both aircraft. They are made in seperate facilities, and large companies like Northrop have seperate workforces for each program. So basically your whole statement is BS.

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Shahriar April 12, 2012 at 6:05 am

@ William… what do you mean by your oil????
Bad attitude and wrong of thinking and absolutely no knowledge 'bout the real world pirate..

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Robert K.Tom November 13, 2011 at 12:28 am

Were is the F-23A?This is the plane that should have won the contract,not the F-22 or the F-35. And this is not speculation eather,(?).
Thank you,
R.K.(Bobby) Tom

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William C. November 13, 2011 at 3:56 am

The YF-23 wasn't part of the JSF competition nor was it built for the same mission as the F-35.

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gellyfeesh November 15, 2011 at 11:48 am

I think it was because it was stupid expensive, and wasn't as versatile. Yea, somehow even more expensive than the gold cockpit glass F-22.

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gellyfeesh November 15, 2011 at 11:49 am

^ c o c k p i t

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David November 17, 2011 at 4:05 pm

1. The Speed is for F-35 is (M)2.5+ too F-22 Hit Speeds of (M) 2.5 + too!

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Mike January 11, 2012 at 9:18 am

In 1992, both YF-23s were fenced outside just north and east of the B-2 building at Edwards AFB. I left in 1993, and do not know what happened to them from that point forward. The 23 was in competition with the 22 only. The F-35 was in competition with the Boeing design that looked like a guppy. Two seperate programs.

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Hans March 19, 2012 at 1:48 pm

Man, for all the "I'm a fighter pilot, and I don't need to go Mach 2, pull 9gs, I cruise around at 450 knots and do all the aerial combat, BVR, etc." Posters. Wow! And for all of the modern fighters can't sustain Mach 2, or fly above 34 thousand feet people. Watch this. It is a video of an ordinanry Mig 29 flying to 72,000 feet and 1500 sustained. Yeah.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WfEeEMU_KPg&fe

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PMI March 19, 2012 at 3:10 pm

Sadly aircraft going to war actually have to carry weapons, which are normally slung out in the air stream. They create this thing called 'drag' which drastically alters the aircraft's performance. Wow! Yeah.

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Hans June 25, 2012 at 6:22 pm

SO you are telling me with a couple of missiles on that puppy its got a top speed of 500kts and a service ceiling of 40K? I bet with a light load the 29 could still top out at 60K and Mach 1.8.

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Tom July 22, 2012 at 9:30 pm

Funny how everyone keeps referring to the mig when were fighting wars against enemies that don’t even have planes…I think the f35 will do just fine in a dogfight with a man on a flying carpet holding an ak47…

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Andy October 7, 2012 at 1:06 am

Come on Guys!

The French passenger plane Concorde acheived Mach 2.15 with 187000 Lbs takeoff weight. JSF was a waste of money and waste of time.

Superman

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Joe MacQueen October 21, 2012 at 11:02 pm

Has anyone any idea what the plan is for this aircraft as the many rolls it will be asked to fill look's more of a ground support first speed is not it's main feature aveonics seem's to be more then earlier plane's and it will probably never fire weapon's at mach 1.6 as pilot's who are flying now don't or have made comments' to that effect . We of little or no knowledge maybe prone to down grade this plane it is something that is easy to do I only hope it will be an aircraft the pilot's who will be flying this jet are proud to fly in all sitution's.

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MikeM November 19, 2012 at 10:43 pm

RE: Texas Jester: Back in the late 70's I and my family were at an air show at Scott AFB,
At one point an F-5 sitting on the tarmac lit up it's two engines and started rolling down the taxi strip when it reached the runway it stopped momentarily then with a deafening roar it started to roll. In a matter of a few seconds it was in the air. Then the crowd roared as the plane went vertical, after burners glowing and disappeared,straight up out of sight. I was amazed!

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Andy Morales February 9, 2013 at 2:02 am

What the hell!!! In Korean war the F9F Panther was 100 mph slower than a Mig 15 yet racked up a 5-0 Kill ratio, it was the Navy pilots vs the Russian pilots. The Navy pilots were better trained and knew how to manuver a panther against the faster Mig. LOL
Give me a F22 any day

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Andy Morales October 9, 2013 at 1:33 pm

Hey guys, remember the Korean war dog fights? I remember 4 Panther jets on patrol near the Soviet Union in late 1953. They were attacked by 6 Mig 15s, faster at 100 mp 5 Mig 15 shot down, 1 trailing smoke. Panther jets were inferior yet got a 5-0 kill ration. Better Pilot training ala TOP GUN, So it will be the better trained pilot in F35 to mop up the skys, Yesssssssssssss

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tiger October 9, 2013 at 2:46 pm

Cleaver, Thomas M. "Four Down! The Korean Combat the U.S. Tried to Forget." Flight Journal, June 2013, pp. 42–49.

The fight was Nov. 15,1952. Lt. Royce Williams of VF-781, flying off the carrier Oriskany during a series of air strikes against the North Korean port of Hoeryong, right across the mouth of the Yalu River from the major Soviet base at Vladivostok. Williams' victories were notable because all four were flown by Soviet Naval Aviation pilots.

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Andy M October 27, 2013 at 2:27 pm
p smith February 25, 2014 at 5:40 am

for all you would be experts, the jets that do mach 2 plus it is only dash speed it cannot be maintained, or parts start to weaken and fly off the plane, not only that there fuel would be quicky exausted,also in a turning dog fight speed bleeds off. the F35 with is senors and real time networking will be tuff to beat, sure it not the F22 but its up there with the best.

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дона хондроматоз коленного сустава May 7, 2014 at 5:16 am

мне кажется, вы не правы ревматоидный артрит фото Дона

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JoeC November 7, 2011 at 8:29 pm

Here's me agreeing with you 1000%.

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So? November 8, 2011 at 12:44 am

The Hornet was the American Fighter in ID4. Prescient. Hope the other stuff doesn't come true.

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Jax November 9, 2011 at 10:38 pm

"F/A-18E/F's max speed is mach 1.8?" You've obviously never flown one. You'd be lucky to get mach 1 with anything other than a "slick" jet.

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PMI November 8, 2011 at 12:07 am

So Block 3 integration on the F-35 is too far away and the alternative is a proposed version of the Super Bug that only exists on paper?

Your range & stealth claims are also only real in the form of Boeing marketing brochures as does the integration costs for all the new components.

Which brings us back to your initial speed argument. You think your Enhanced Super Bug with the pods & weapons out in the air stream will be able to keep up with the F-35 whose speed you were arguing against earlier?

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PMI November 8, 2011 at 12:57 am

Looks like 6 internal got pushed back to Block 5.

Regardless 4 internal is a requirement for the offensive counter air mission and will be integrated during SDD. It absolutely will be available at IOC.

BTW fan art aside the information is easily available from the program office.

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PMI November 8, 2011 at 1:03 am

Oops forget to mention Block 3 is production standard which is what all of the air frames currently being delivered are built to. Your "too far away" was already surpassed in Feb of this year.

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William C. November 9, 2011 at 5:51 am

The prototypes first flew in 1996, doesn't mean the RAH-66 was ready then.

The RAH-66 was an amazing machine that unfortunately had lost its place in Army doctrine by the time it was ready for production. Quite a shame.

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Mike November 9, 2011 at 7:15 am

Only good thing that cam from Comanche was stealth technology for insertion helicopters. With 2 stealth bombers (the F177 might have been called a fighter, but it was a bomber), why did we need a stealth attack chopper?

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blight November 9, 2011 at 8:47 am

It was meant to be a stealth reconaissance vehicle, which needs an innate capability to engage targets of opportunity. However, I'm not sure if it was armored up or capable of deploying the same payloads that an Apache would.

Then again, there may have been some mission creep in the "light reconaissance" design…

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SMSgt Mac November 9, 2011 at 2:41 pm

Minor correction. They are being built to latest configuration that will later be loaded with Block 3 S/W. Word is the long pole on that milestone has as much to do with security requirements as anything else. No matter, even with a Block 1 S/W load post weapons integration, I'd take a F-35 over an F-16 or F-18 of any type.

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Black Owl November 10, 2011 at 12:53 pm

I happen to live on a military base and I talk to several Super Hornet pilots that are here on TAD duty. I asked them about it.

You've obviously never flown one either, or by my guess even talked to someone that had flown one so good job at making yourself look like an idiot.

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Black Owl November 10, 2011 at 12:57 pm

Also! The Super Hornet with the international road map upgrades is a "slick" jet. It only has the weapon's pod underneath and the conformal fuel tanks or designed in such a way to remain low drag and create lift. This means it doens't have to carry the underwing pylons which are to blame for the high drag on combat loaded F/A-18E/F because they're slanted outward 4 degrees.

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William C. November 13, 2011 at 1:15 am

The Super Hornet won't be breaking Mach 2, the intakes aren't designed for it. Also the whole weapons pod is a gimmick. Too small a payload compared to internal bays. I'd be glad if the Navy upgraded its Super Hornets but in the longer term we need something better.

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