Re: Which is stealthier? F/A-22A v. F-117


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Message posted by Peter Merlin on March 17, 2012 at 12:22:14 PST:

The new generation of stealth fighters (F-22 and F-35) may not look as stealthy as their predecessors, owing to a more conventional configuration, But I have heard that they are very stealthy indeed.

I have to admit that when I heard that the F-22 could do the same mission (air-to-ground) as the F-117A, I was skeptical. The Raptor is obviously optimized for air combat maneuvers (ACM). However, when someone explained what sort of crossrange you get from a JDAM that has been carried to the raptor's operational altitudes it suddenly made perfect sense.

Though the debate rages on, I think it would be a mistake to discount the future value of ACM. Every time the generals claim we will be moving into a new era of "push-button warfare" (i.e. only missiles or other advanced long-range armament), we find ourselves engaging an enemy that relies on air-to-air combat. As has already been pointed out, we have to relearn that lesson over and over again. I think the fact that the Red Hats/Red Eagles program remains among the highest priority efforts at Groom Lake shows that military planners still see the value of maintaining an edge in air-to-air combat.


In Reply to: Re: Which is stealthier? F/A-22A v. F-117 posted by Andre' M. Dall'au on March 17, 2012 at 11:43:24 PST:

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