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Northrop/McDonnell Douglas YF-23 and EMD F-23

flateric

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...sad twins... :'(
 

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donnage99

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the yf-22 looks butt ugly when flying around yf-23.

P.S. and Flateric, you ROCK!
 

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Comparing the YF-22 prototypes with the production F-22, its apparent that Lockheed and the USAF sacrificed speed for lower speed maneuverability. The YF-22 was in its own right a very unique appearing aircraft that as it was redesigned it became a very conventional looking airframe. Sure they will tell you that it still meets the requirements, but its also obvious that the prototype airframe was probably capable of faster cruising speeds (with the production PWs) than the F-22A.

I wonder what the F-23A would have looked like in its final design should it have beat Lockmart.
 

flateric

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tacitblue said:
I wonder what the F-23A would have looked like in its final design should it have beat Lockmart.
Try to read this thread from the beginning=)
 

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I am probably going to star a heated argument here but I think the YF-23 wins aesthetically compared to the YF-22. The continuous curvature gives it sense of aerodynamic fluidity and therefore beauty that the angled YF-22 just does not have.
 

AeroFranz

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dreamstar said:
I am probably going to star a heated argument here but I think the YF-23 wins aesthetically compared to the YF-22. The continuous curvature gives it sense of aerodynamic fluidity and therefore beauty that the angled YF-22 just does not have.
Agreed. it's like arguing over blondes or brunettes. This being said, the YF-23 is more likely to satisfy the aesthetical needs of your average aviation enthusiast (me included).
As you mentioned, the curvaceous nature of the mold lines is more pleasing to the eye. On a side view, the YF-23 shows a slim, 'flattened' profile, while the Raptor is a little bit 'deep' or pudgy.
From the front, the YF-23 lines flow one into the other, whereas the F-22 has that very angular, almost canoe-like look. About the only angle that was not entirely satisfying on the YF-23 was looking at it from the bottom. I can't quite figure why, but I think that it's the very wide surface between the engines. That flattened area contributes to lift too, but it does throw off the usual ratio of fuselage width/wing span that I am accustomed to see on a fighter.
I realize this is a highly subjective and utterly non-technical discussion, so I'll stop here! ;)
 

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It might have been posted in this thread alrady, or be common knowledge to many members, but why was the YF-22 chosen over the YF-23? From what I've heared the YF-23 had a better performance (much faster than the YF-22) and vastly improved stealth qualities. So it should have won the competition, if only because it's just a damn sexy and much better looking aircraft B).
 

flateric

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If you are lazy to tead the thread from the beginning, why you will bother to read the answer to the question you have asked right here?
 

lantinian

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Yeah, it is ironic isn't is. (the ATF selection or your reply Remko I cannot tell).

Perhaps the down-select commission was full with guys like you, unwilling to look through the long papers submitted by Lockheed and Northrop. Maybe ready to pass judgement based on their political state of mind not facts, if the facts do not support their decision as you say.

Well, the facts are, that you have 22 pages of opinions from different people answering and debating your question, Remko.

I suggest you spend few hours reading this whole thread. I bet you will learn things you have not even though of asking for.
 

donnage99

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Remko said:
It might have been posted in this thread alrady, or be common knowledge to many members, but why was the YF-22 chosen over the YF-23? From what I've heared the YF-23 had a better performance (much faster than the YF-22) and vastly improved stealth qualities. So it should have won the competition, if only because it's just a damn sexy and much better looking aircraft B).
Start from page 14, from my reply #202 (as far as I know that's where the debate started to get down and dirty). From there, me, lantinian, and f-14d are probably the 3 most active in the debate (if I'm missing out anyone else, I'm sorry). I can't give you my opinion here, or anyone else, because it's just gonna spam the thread with repeated posts.

You gotta understand how we feeling considering all the words that have been said and for someone else just come in ressurrecting the same question that has been beaten and phased out in the process.

EDIT: as for someone who said that he/she probably gonna start a heated debate when he/she said that the yf-23 is more beautiful. Is that even a debate ;D ? I hardly find anyone in this thread that thinks the yf-22 more beautiful. If it's even a debate at all, it would be a very one sided one.
 

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EDIT: as for someone who said that he/she probably gonna start a heated debate when he/she said that the yf-23 is more beautiful. Is that even a debate ? I hardly find anyone in this thread that thinks the yf-22 more beautiful
Yes, YF-23 wins all beauty contests hands down.

Its also interesting to note that most people also find the F-117 to be ugly. This of course has to do with Lockheed and Northrop basic stealth philosophy in the early 80s. As the F-22 happens to be half in between those two philosophies (at least in shape), I guess you can either think of it as half as beautiful as the YF-23 or the F-117 but never #1.
 

donnage99

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lantinian said:
EDIT: as for someone who said that he/she probably gonna start a heated debate when he/she said that the yf-23 is more beautiful. Is that even a debate ? I hardly find anyone in this thread that thinks the yf-22 more beautiful
Yes, YF-23 wins all beauty contests hands down.

Its also interesting to note that most people also find the F-117 to be ugly. This of course has to do with Lockheed and Northrop basic stealth philosophy in the early 80s. As the F-22 happens to be half in between those two philosophies (at least in shape), I guess you can either think of it as half as beautiful as the YF-23 or the F-117 but never #1.
Talking about beauty, I think the yf-23 is the best representation of what 5th generation fighter should look like. The yf-22 is butt ugly and awkward. The f-22 looks a hell lot of an improvement, but still looks like just a f-15 on stealth steroid, not true " aesthetically next generation" like when we move from the f-5 to the f-14 and f-15.

As for the f-117, it looks beautiful from afar, but up close, its nose is the big killer. Same with b-2, the separated blending of the 3 "tubes" (the 2 inlet/engines on the side and the main body inbetween) is the killer, though the overall beauty overwhelms this shortcoming. If only 2 engines and the main body are closer and blends together like the 2018 proposals, it would have looked perfect.
 

Remko

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flateric said:
If you are lazy to tead the thread from the beginning, why you will bother to read the answer to the question you have asked right here?
Ah yes... Good point. :-[

Well, of to read the whole thread from the beginning then... ;)
 

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Although, at least the production F-22 isn't near as ugly as the YF-22. However, in my book, the YF-23 is the best fighter never built.
 

overscan (PaulMM)

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I think we can all agree YF-23 was prettier than YF-22. Perhaps this can be the final time someone mentions it?
 

donnage99

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I read on several times that there was a problem with yf-23's aft being heavy, due to its b-2 like design, but I don't recall these so called information coming from reliable sources, so can anyone refute or validate this?
 

doolyii

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These are all beautiful pictures...I love it. Thanks !!
As an engineer who thinks X-32 was an engineering beauty (not for looks), probably I will be the last one eligible talking about which one is better looking. However, I kinda believe that it's little weird even to think about F-22 dogfighting close in against any threat (just compare price tag), so low speed handling issue is little moot point. Speed and stealth were prioritized parameters, but then again both design kinda met performance requirements. I was able to see both F-119 version for YF-23, YF-22 while working at Pratt, both were pretty impressive engineering marble...Variable pitch nozzle of YF-22 looked heavy and complex, but it was at least tried before in previous F-15 experimental work, but YF-23/F-119 nozzle looked incredibly complex and difficult problem (those perforated tiles to deal with afterburning F-119..oh boy..)..

I do think they both met minimum requirements, and decision was made based on (setting aside politics at least) how credible project plan they were presenting and previous record...F-117/Skunkworks vs. B-2/Northrop (not known for good relationship with air force), hard to beat. USAF seems like preferring something looks familiar except A-10 (USAF never liked it) / F-16.. F-15 / F-22 / F-35 are looking pretty evolutionary at least in airframe side.

Just my opinion.
 

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doolyii said:
These are all beautiful pictures...I love it. Thanks !!
As an engineer who thinks X-32 was an engineering beauty (not for looks), probably I will be the last one eligible talking about which one is better looking. However, I kinda believe that it's little weird even to think about F-22 dogfighting close in against any threat (just compare price tag), so low speed handling issue is little moot point. Speed and stealth were prioritized parameters, but then again both design kinda met performance requirements. I was able to see both F-119 version for YF-23, YF-22 while working at Pratt, both were pretty impressive engineering marble...Variable pitch nozzle of YF-22 looked heavy and complex, but it was at least tried before in previous F-15 experimental work, but YF-23/F-119 nozzle looked incredibly complex and difficult problem (those perforated tiles to deal with afterburning F-119..oh boy..)..

I do think they both met minimum requirements, and decision was made based on (setting aside politics at least) how credible project plan they were presenting and previous record...F-117/Skunkworks vs. B-2/Northrop (not known for good relationship with air force), hard to beat. USAF seems like preferring something looks familiar except A-10 (USAF never liked it) / F-16.. F-15 / F-22 / F-35 are looking pretty evolutionary at least in airframe side.

Just my opinion.
Doesn't do the US Air Force much good to order the better looking and superior performing aircraft and then have problems with the contractor or have the project cancelled for political reasons. Can't blame the US Air Force for backing the aircraft that meets requirements and has the greatest chances of being built in the numbers required and the one that is less costly to maintain.

The McDonnnell Douglas F-4 Phantom II was described as "Double Ugly", but I don't think the US Air Force regrets its decision to buy it.

As for the A-10 Thunderbolt II, I thought that the US Air Force wanted to take the planes out of service because it wanted to get out of the Close Air Support mission and give it to the United States Army. I didn't think it was because the plane in some eyes was considered ugly.
 

flateric

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doolyii said:
As an engineer who thinks X-32 was an engineering beauty (not for looks)
Second on that;)
 

doolyii

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The McDonnnell Douglas F-4 Phantom II was described as "Double Ugly", but I don't think the US Air Force regrets its decision to buy it.

As for the A-10 Thunderbolt II, I thought that the US Air Force wanted to take the planes out of service because it wanted to get out of the Close Air Support mission and give it to the United States Army. I didn't think it was because the plane in some eyes was considered ugly.
[/quote]

If I remember correctly, USAF bought F-4 because the performance difference (competing with F106 back then ?) was just too much to keep the pride (not buying Navy plane)...As for close air support business, I think Air Force never wanted that task to any other service (part of the big fight between USAF and Army...restarted with this UAV stuff), A-10 was too slow and too vulnerable to some, that's why they wanted to replace A-10 to F-16 CAS version before Gulf War changed all that...

Still, only A-10 vs A-9 (A-10 was pretty out of trend), YF-16 vs. YF-17 (F-16 were pretty revolutionary) comes to my mind when Air Force selected higher risk (more exotic) design...F-117 was followed different development track as well as SR-71/U-2/B-2..

For fighter, F-15 (better everything than F-4, from same manufacturer)/F-22 (based on F-15 mission, higher-faster-stealthier) /F-35 (single engined F-22, for CAS and interdiction minded) appear to be following pretty general trend of selection..
 

donnage99

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I read an article a while ago that talked about a legal fight between northrop and one of its subcontractor for the yf-23 exhausts. Apparently, the exhaust was more complex then they had predicted, and the subcontractor sued northrop for hiding the information before they put their hands to work. The legal fight didn't settle until 2003 or so, I think. I forgot most of the content. Maybe someone knows what I'm talking about.
 

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What makes you say the X-32 was a beauty from an engineering standpoint? How was it better engineered than the X-35?
 

flateric

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donnage99 said:
I read an article a while ago that talked about a legal fight between northrop and one of its subcontractor for the yf-23 exhausts. Apparently, the exhaust was more complex then they had predicted, and the subcontractor sued northrop for hiding the information before they put their hands to work. The legal fight didn't settle until 2003 or so, I think. I forgot most of the content. Maybe someone knows what I'm talking about.
Rohr Industries? Or Allison?
 

donnage99

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flateric said:
donnage99 said:
I read an article a while ago that talked about a legal fight between northrop and one of its subcontractor for the yf-23 exhausts. Apparently, the exhaust was more complex then they had predicted, and the subcontractor sued northrop for hiding the information before they put their hands to work. The legal fight didn't settle until 2003 or so, I think. I forgot most of the content. Maybe someone knows what I'm talking about.
Rohr Industries? Or Allison?
Allison. I found the article:

GM Wins $68M State Court Judgment Against Northrop
Regarding ATF Subcontract

An Indiana court May 3 awarded General Motors Corp. and Allison Engine Co. Inc. $67.7 million in a long-running dispute with Northrop Grumman Corp. regarding a subcontract under the Air Force Advanced Tactical Fighter (ATF) program (General Motors Corp. v. Northrop Corp., Ind. Super. Ct., No. 49D05-9902-CP-154, 5/3/02).

The judgment reflects a jury award of $31.3 million on four counts and $36.4 million in prejudgment interest on the jury award.

In 1986 Northrop and Lockheed were competing to develop the Air Force's next generation Advanced Tactical Fighter. Like the B-2 stealth bomber, also made by Northrop, its version of the ATF, known as the YF-23, incorporated a number of features to promote stealth, including burying the engines in the aircraft fuselage to shroud rotating engine parts and hot engine exhaust from radar and infrared detection.


Allison Incurred Increased Costs
In September 1987, Northrop's Aircraft Division--which, along with Lockheed, was a prime contractor on the demonstration/validation phase of the ATF program--awarded GM's Allison Gas Turbine Division a $13 million research and development subcontract to design, develop, and fabricate nine sets of Engine Exhaust Liners--actively cooled exhaust troughs that shielded and channeled the engine's exhaust over the YF-23's aft deck. Allison used a patented, proprietary cooling technology known as Lamilloy® to design the Exhaust Liners.

In 1988, Northrop ordered a second component from Allison known as the Trailing Edge, which closed out the Exhaust Liners at the end of the aircraft's aft deck.

Allison incurred large cost increases on the Exhaust Liner (EEL) and Trailing Edge (TE) subcontracts. The EEL subcontract experienced increased costs, including associated profit, of $29.6 million beyond the $13 million price that Northrop paid, i.e., total costs of $42.6 million.

The TE subcontract had incurred costs and associated profit of $7.3 million. For that contract, there was no agreed to price, and Northrop had paid nothing for that work.


Allison Claimed Northrop Withheld Information
The liners performed successfully during flight tests of Northrop's YF-23 in August 1990. However, in April 1991, Northrop lost the ATF competition to the YF-22 built by Lockheed.

In September 1991, Allison sued Northrop in Marion County Superior Court in Indianapolis, Ind., to recover its increased costs.

Allison claimed that Northrop:

- withheld "superior knowledge" of the environment in which the liners would have to function,

- provided defective specifications, and

- made major changes to the work during the course of contract performance.

Allison claimed that Northrop's conduct required Allison to develop a more complex, heavier, and much more expensive to manufacture Exhaust Liner system, and that the master agreement executed by the parties entitled Allison to be reimbursed for its increased costs.

With respect to the Trailing Edge contract, Allison alleged that the parties had failed to agree on a price for that added work and that it was entitled to be paid a reasonable price measured by its actual costs.

The sum of incurred costs and profit for the EEL and TE work totaled about $49.9 million, but Northrop had previously paid about $13 million of that, leaving the $36.9 million sued for ($29.6 million plus $7.3 million), an attorney familiar with the case told FCR May 6.

The case was originally scheduled for trial in July 1995, but the original trial judge reconsidered earlier rulings and granted summary judgment to Northrop on the Exhaust Liner claims. In September 1997, the Indiana Court of Appeals reversed the trial court and remanded for trial, and the Indiana Supreme Court denied further review.

A jury trial was held before a new trial judge commencing Jan. 22, 2002. It resulted in a jury verdict in favor of GM and Allison on March 13. The jury found for GM and Allison on each of the Exhaust Liner counts--superior knowledge, defective specifications, and major changes--and awarded $25.8 million as Exhaust Liner damages.

The jury also found for GM and Allison on the Trailing Edge claim and awarded $5.4 million for that claim. The jury rejected Northrop's arguments that Northrop had not withheld superior knowledge, provided defective specifications, or made changes to the work.

The jury rejected Northrop's argument that Allison had not given proper notice of its claims. Finally, the jury rejected Northrop's defense on the Trailing Edge claim that Allison was limited to the $2.2 million Allison initially proposed for that work--but not accepted by Northrop--as a not-to-exceed ceiling price. The jury also found against Northrop on its counterclaim.

Thus, Allison recovered $31.3 million, or about 85 percent of the $36.9 million it had sought on the two claims.

Then, on May 3, Judge Gary L. Miller awarded $36.3 million in prejudgment interest for the 11-year period from the dates Allison submitted its Exhaust Liner and Trailing Edge claims--August and December of 1990--through the date of judgment. Together with the $31.3 million jury verdict on the underlying claims, Allison's total recovery is $67.7 million.

Sources said Northrop is considering filing an appeal.

Allison Engine Company Inc., based in Indianapolis, was formed to succeed Allison Gas Turbine Division in 1993, and later became part of Rolls-Royce in 1995. Northrop Aircraft Division became part of Northrop Grumman Corporation.
 

flateric

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Thanks, an interesting finding. As I know, this is not the only filing related to YF-23.
 

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The plastic material was swelling and delaminating from the substrate due to exposure to the weather. The material originally conformed to the outer moldline when the aircraft was flying.
 

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If you mean the holes, I think they were intended to suck away boundary layer air. That Allison feature is amusing, I hadn't realized that the exhaust system was "actively cooled".
 

flateric

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what do you mean? this is metallic plate with zillion laser-made holes that was intended to suck turbulent boundary layer to prevent it from coming to intake. PAV-2 was stationed at the open storage for 15+ years, plus, it was mothballed in 1990, with preservative coatings sprayed on all the open holes, including these plates to prevent water/condensate. I presume that plate got its bumps either while WMOF staff removed coating, or it was just matter of a/c age and storage conditions. It never was intended to look so bad...

That's how it did in 1997. You can see remaining stains from coating. Photo (c) Yuichi Yokokava
 

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flateric

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It's one of the essential features of the YF-23 inlets, and it's meant to lower RCS. It's kinda hard to wrap your head around it unless you see a 3D model. You are correct, the four corners of the inlet do not lie in a plane, which is the opposite of all other fighters like F-14, F-15, MiG-29, MiG-31 etc.
 

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Something for Gregory: http://www.milviz.com/modeldetail.php?type=1&id=F-23%20Black%20Widow%20II#

Edit: And for Nikolay of course. SHAME ON ME THAT I FORGOT!! :D
 

flateric

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well, nice, but too many mistakes to name)))
 

lantinian

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Matej,
You missed me but I won't notice...this time ;)

Anyway, I am especially impressed by the wepons bay. Still, I think we need to contact him and let him know that right weapons arrangement for the F-23A.

Maybe provide him with enough data, so he can make the first accurate 3D model, based on Matej's drawings in the first page of this tread

Anyway, AWESOME FIND Matej
 

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