An F-22 Raptor hovers vertically above the Arctic Thunder air show and open house at Elmendorf Air Force Base, Alaska, on Aug. 13. The Raptor was flown by Maj. Michael Shower, who will become the first commander of the F-22 squadron at Elmendorf next summer. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman Jonathan Steffen)
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So th F-22 Raptor has finally entered service?
Will it be distributed massively, and to which role? Or will there be more delays? AFAIK, the program had to be completed about 5 years ago (this to CeeTee that bitches about how much taxpayers' money goes down the toilet in Italy...) :s25:
PT, you obviously know very little about air combat.
First off, yes, the F-22 is in service. Second the first production order is for four wings of them made [12 squadrons]. Compared to only three wings [nine squadrons] of Eurofighters that are on its first production order.
And in all likelyhood the F-22 program will be extended into the 1,000+ production range over the next two decades.
The Unit Flyaway Cost of the F-22 is $127 million US dollars, the Unit Flyaway Cost of the Eurofighter is $83 million US dollars. Not a huge difference.
So now that we've established that A: More F-22s will be made than Eurofighters and B: They're in a similar cost bracket. Let's compare their abilities.
Maximum speed with reheat.
F-22A: Mach 2.42
EF-2000: Mach 1.94
Maximum Speed without reheat.
F-22A: Mach 1.72
EF-2000: Mach 1.21
Radar Cross Section.
Combat radius, lo-lo-lo ground-attack.
F-22A: 430 miles.
EF-2000: 373 miles.
Maximum combat weapons load.
Those are all I will bother with at this time, but in pretty much every way, the F-22 knocks the Euro-lemon out of the water. I won't even go into the F-22s AN/APG-77 radar vs the Eurolemons CAPTOR, due to the fact most technical discussion of it would go over everyones head.
When they meet in combat [and they will, you Euros will sell it to one of our enemies just to spite us], the Eurofighter will not stand a chance. The Eurofighter will never even see the F-22 on its radar, and it won't see the AIM-120s until one seconds before impact, far too little time to do anything about it. Even if the Eurofighter somehow manages to survive to visual range where the F-22s stealth isn't an issue, the F-22 would still toast the Eurofighter with its massively superior maneuverability and thrust-to-weight ratio. A single flight of F-22s would be able to take out an entire squadron of Eurofighters with ease.
And considering the cost advantage isn't nearly enough to let you buy more than one squadron of Eurofighters per four F-22s, that means they aren't nearly cost effective. Even if we assume you're willing to just throw pilots into the F-22s meatgrinder hoping that for every 16 dead Euros you might down one F-22, it's still a pointless waste on your part.
And speaking of delayed wastes of money, how's the Airbus A-380 coming? :MDR85:
Not trying to be confrontational, but don't go running around with a slab of meat near a german shepard.
We aren't in a war where the F-22 is direly needed. So delayed but good is a lot better than on time but flawed, and a lot more cost effective too. Its a lot easier to wait a few years and have a properly made system than to have to spend a decade fixing mistakes made by moving an evolutionary system along too fast. A lot CHEAPER too. Especially if you have to retire the system a decade earlier than you would have otherwise because of those problems.
The US learned quite a bit back in the 50's and 60's about rushing out fighter designs and the problems it brings.
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