USAF/US NAVY 6G Fighter Programs - F/A-XX, F-X, NGAD, PCA, ASFS news

Obviously manned fighters will be around for some time, but if this is the emerging trend then eventually manned fighters will go extinct, what then as regards the same issue?

That’s far enough into the future that I’m willing to wait and see if we are still here.
 
Obviously manned fighters will be around for some time, but if this is the emerging trend then eventually manned fighters will go extinct, what then as regards the same issue?

The trend toward unmanned is definitely there.

Computing power and AI are getting better every year. It's a matter of time for most missions.

Lessons from the Ukraino-Russo war are fueling the urgency around unmanned platforms.
 
The trend toward unmanned is definitely there.

Computing power and AI are getting better every year. It's a matter of time for most missions.

Lessons from the Ukraino-Russo war are fueling the urgency around unmanned platforms.
The urgency is to have a powerfull Air Force the drone war of Ukraine is going nowhere , no winner , to win you must dominate the sky.
 
The urgency is to have a powerfull Air Force the drone war of Ukraine is going nowhere , no winner , to win you must dominate the sky.

If the Russians or Ukranians could dominate the sky, do you think they'd stop using drones?

Drones are here to say. What we are seeing in Ukraine is like airpower in WW1. Immature, but clearly something useful. Both sides are trying to figure out how to best use it and experimenting heavily.

Unmanned is here to stay.
 
If the Russians or Ukranians could dominate the sky, do you think they'd stop using drones?

Drones are here to say. What we are seeing in Ukraine is like airpower in WW1. Immature, but clearly something useful. Both sides are trying to figure out how to best use it and experimenting heavily.

Unmanned is here to stay.
They'd have a lot less utility if one side could gain air-superiority and leverage that to decimate enemy artillery and other assets. Enabling forces on the ground to maneuver and make breakthroughs instead of being bogged down in this present wasteful war of attrition.
 
???? What that mean ? there is one information behind what He say ? What is NGAD if not a F-22 replacement ?
 
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Remember that sustainability costs are a big part of this. AI doesn’t need to train, at least not on every airframe. Just focusing on fly away costs does not bring the whole picture. If you do not have to fly to train, you skip a lot of maintenance as well.

That is true, but the manned component whether it be F-22, F-35, F-15, or F-16 will need to train with CCAs. It's not like you are going to keep them in storage and break the glass in the event of war.
 

“I want everybody to be clear that it’s a family of systems, and there’s a lot of things that are not in the public sphere that we’ve been working on for a while and we’ll continue to expand that,” he said. Interesting a lot of thing are behind the wall....
 
I am willing to think that a bit of this comes with the electoral agenda. Some might have read too much in Reagan´s team memories.
 
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As far as I know, tactical nukes were never regulated. Intermediate range missiles were, as a delivery system. Outside that delivery stipulation I do not they were regulated.

In any case, there’s no shortage of F-35s for that role.
Yes, I was thinking about the intermediate range or 'theatre' weapons such as Tomahawk and Pershing that were based in the UK and Europe in the 80s.
 
In the best case they've suddenly lost all message discipline on this and everyone's just talking without thinking. Worst case the the program's being futzed with so much nobody inside or out is able to keep up in real time. Neither is reassuring.
 
Remember that sustainability costs are a big part of this. AI doesn’t need to train, at least not on every airframe. Just focusing on fly away costs does not bring the whole picture. If you do not have to fly to train, you skip a lot of maintenance as well.
The ground crews still need to train on the CCAs.

Even if you make them as "wooden rounds" with the AAMs pre-loaded and somehow rated to sit in storage for however long, that's only good for their first launch. Afterwards they need to be refueled, reloaded, and have any maintenance done before their next flight.
 
The ground crews still need to train on the CCAs.

Even if you make them as "wooden rounds" with the AAMs pre-loaded and somehow rated to sit in storage for however long, that's only good for their first launch. Afterwards they need to be refueled, reloaded, and have any maintenance done before their next flight.

It is still likely far less maintenance cost. Ground training and manned/unmanned training still has to happen, but the UAV does not need to ever train for basic proficiency. Lower hours on the aircraft should reduce costs. Obviously not having to train pilots is a big saving as well.
 
It is also probable that many CCA airframe could be resold as brand new, never having flown a single operational hour. That is an often relegated important parameter that should be kept in mind when dealing with forward planning at the pace the USAF wants to renew their UAS fleet to stay on-top of the game.
I would even say that this aspect should be part of gov requirement as early as the design phase since actionizing those sale would be dragged by government oversight and political debate on something as complicated (better plan early what and to who).
But if a resale could be made quickly, a significant influx of capital would benefit the effort to purchase new hardware.
 
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Alternatively, older increments of CCA could simply be used as an expendable round.

Given that much of the CCA fleet would not require high airframe hours, I wonder if buying used high mileage engines from civilian sources might have some merit as a cost savings measure. It seems unlikely that a CCA is going to need the full engine life of say a Williams 44.
 
I full realize that with a limited budget you need to make choices. But keeping the Block 20s was a no brainer when the F-22s are among the youngest and most capable fighters in service, especially when you have so few F-22s in the inventory. I'm surprised that it took so long for someone to say this. The campaign to retire the Block 20s reminds me of the messiness this last month with NGAD. AF leadership said the Block 20s were next to useless for training because they didn't represent operational F-22s. Then they ended up admitting that Block 30s would need to be pulled from operational squadrons to backfill Block 20s in training squadrons. Now they are signaling they would like to keep the Block 20s.

For less than the price of an F-15EX you could upgrade the Block 20s to the current standard.
 
I think more and more than the NGAD is a supersonic command and control aircraft with the capacity of shooting long range AA missile, not maneuver or dog fighting like F-22 of today.
The only thing that worries me is that it almost sounds like a repeat of Vietnam when the F-4's were fielded. When everyone's cards are all exhausted, I feel turn and burn will be the game again.
 
Wanted to get your guys' thoughts on this. I was reading back into the Northrop Grumman Fixed supersonic nozzle patent from the first picture. Now I know that NG isn't in the race anymore, however, I read further into the description, (included the patent link) and it describes a mission profile of Mach 2.2 supercruise at FL600 and a subsequent loitering at Mach 0.8 at FL360. Maybe this was a design requirement for NGAD (or parent program)?

Patent Link:
 

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Among other things, how to make a thinner fixed geometry nozzle by putting another nozzle inside for the third stream cooling air? More generally a computational method better than guess and check...

Also:

"In the disclosed embodiment the initial criteria was selected based on notional mission profile containing a 60,000 feet, Mach 2.2 supercrusie segment and at 36,000 feet, Mach 0.08 loiter segment. However, the design process disclosed herein is applicable across the range of operating nozzle pressure ratios and flight conditions."
 
M2.2 supercruise at 60Kft, that would be a BVR monster. It is interesting that supercruise is still factoring into fighter design. There has been some speculation that SC was a fad and it was better to stay slower and hence cooler to better hide from IRST. This suggests that may not be the case.
 

It occurs to me that deliberately mixed and inconsistent messaging is one way of creating dilemmas for Chinese planning.
 
Among other things, how to make a thinner fixed geometry nozzle by putting another nozzle inside for the third stream cooling air? More generally a computational method better than guess and check...

Also:

"In the disclosed embodiment the initial criteria was selected based on notional mission profile containing a 60,000 feet, Mach 2.2 supercrusie segment and at 36,000 feet, Mach 0.08 loiter segment. However, the design process disclosed herein is applicable across the range of operating nozzle pressure ratios and flight conditions."
Perhaps this is how they incorporate NGAP into how the engine works? It's hard to tell but that would be extremely complex to make a series of separate exhaust systems off of one engine per power unit. It fits the bill of three stage adaptive cycle engines but this just leaves my head spinning on how to make it all work the right way.
 
Perhaps this is how they incorporate NGAP into how the engine works? It's hard to tell but that would be extremely complex to make a series of separate exhaust systems off of one engine per power unit. It fits the bill of three stage adaptive cycle engines but this just leaves my head spinning on how to make it all work the right way.

Hence "Sneden said aircraft primes Boeing, Lockheed Martin, and Northrop Grumman all received nearly billion-dollar NGAP contracts last year—as did GE and Pratt—to harmonize the engines’ performance with NGAD airframe"

from the 2023 article https://www.airandspaceforces.com/article/next-gen-fighter-engines/ and other places. And also, probably, hence the review based on new funding obstacles & other reasons.
 
Wanted to get your guys' thoughts on this. I was reading back into the Northrop Grumman Fixed supersonic nozzle patent from the first picture. Now I know that NG isn't in the race anymore, however, I read further into the description, (included the patent link) and it describes a mission profile of Mach 2.2 supercruise at FL600 and a subsequent loitering at Mach 0.8 at FL360. Maybe this was a design requirement for NGAD (or parent program)?

Patent Link:
That's an odd flight profile.

Blackbird and Valkyrie both prove that it's possible to optimize a design to cruise at high speed. Crud, the manual I have for the Boeing 2707 says that it has just the same range at Mach 2.7 as it does subsonic.

Granted, none of those planes could even politely be described as "aerobatic."
 
That's an odd flight profile.

Blackbird and Valkyrie both prove that it's possible to optimize a design to cruise at high speed. Crud, the manual I have for the Boeing 2707 says that it has just the same range at Mach 2.7 as it does subsonic.

Granted, none of those planes could even politely be described as "aerobatic."
Not so odd if NGAD is a purported BVR beast command and control platform. But who knows! I'm ready to see this darn thing already. Better assumptions can be had once a real product is shown!
 

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