It’s got the F-18 finally straighten out….
It’s STILL working of roughing out the F-35….
And the Navy fast burners want a NEW aircraft (FA-XX) for their inventory???
This when the Government’s budget is a mess of red ink and the economy is going sideways….
The new Sec of Defense should table this request until things get straighten up on the budget …Put this request in drawer Joe…..
The U.S. Navy is laying the groundwork to field a new fighter jet sometime in the next decade. The Next Generation Air Dominance fighter, meant to replace the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, should start flying off America’s aircraft carriers in the 2030s. But a declining defense budget and short timetable could mean the best candidate is … the F-35.
U.S. Navy aircraft carriers typically embark four squadrons of fighter jets as part of the carrier air wing. Right now, all four squadrons fly the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet. Over the course of the next decade, the Navy will retire older Super Hornets in favor of the carrier-based variant of the F-35, the F-35C. By the 2030s, a carrier air wing should consist of about two squadrons of upgraded Super Hornets, the Block III, and two squadrons of F-35Cs.
The Navy wants a new fighter in the 2030s to replace Block III. Now, according to USNI News, the Navy has stood up the program to oversee development of the fighter, which it calls Next Generation Air Dominance (NGAD). The fighter would be the Pentagon’s first new fighter jet since the F-35….
The prospect of a new American fighter jet is an exciting one, but expectations should be tempered against reality. Developing a new fighter is exponentially more difficult than it was a half century ago, and there might well be less money to do so than the Navy anticipates. On the bright side, it might finally be the opportunity to build a F-35 that satisfies everyone.
top image…artist conception of the possible FA-XX Navy fighter jet….The National Interest…
bottom image…Boeing artist rendering of a F/A-18F Super Hornet Block III. Note conformal fuel tanks above the wings to increase range….Aaron Foster