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  • March 2013
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Quick solution to USAF downwards spiral

Posted by picard578 on March 3, 2013


US aircraft procurement is on obvious downwards spiral – huge increases in spending have resulted in equally huge decreases in procurement. Most numerous tactical aircraft in US service is still F-16, and is likely to remain so for next few decades. This is my solution.

10 Responses to “Quick solution to USAF downwards spiral”

  1. Nuno Gomes said

    I really like the Gripen,but an exotic european jet is not the solution.The reallity is that an F-16 is allready in use and new build F-15s and F-16s would be just dandy…and the A-10s are getting old(last one build in 1984)so ask Boeing to build a few new ones 🙂


    • picard578 said

      Problem is that F-16C is overweight, and I do not think that USAF would accept F-16A. It could be possible to redesign F-16A with IRST, composite airframe and such, and in that configuration it would be badass fighter like almost no other, but I’m not sure there is time for that.


      • Dennis F. said

        A quick idea: Wasn´t the Mitsubishi F2 (from its appearance) an enlarged F-16? I mean: Bigger wings and a slightly aerodynamically improved airframe could solve the problem of the bad wingloading (because the USAF won´t leave out the necessary electronics of the C-variant).


  2. Nuno Gomes said

    Overweight? Just put the engine of the F-16 E/F on an airframe without the CFTs and it will be the hottest dogfighter in town. The Block 60’s General Electric F110-GE-132 engine is a development of the -129 model and is rated at 32,500 lbf (144 kN).


  3. Nuno Gomes said

    F-16 A empty:7390kg Maximum take-off weight:17000kg F-16 C empty:8570kg Maximum take-off weight:19200kg
    Even the F-16E/F with CFTs empty:9980kg Maximum take-off weight:20900kg …you forget that wing loading helps the fighter to turn better without losing speed ,but if a fighter has worst wing loading but better T/W it will turn equal or better depending on the ratio between bouth valours…i.e the F-20 had worst wing loading than the F-5 E but it performed better in ALL areas even in turning.All pilots say the F-16C with superior engine easealy outperforms the F-16 A…


    • picard578 said

      Wing loading is more important for horizontal turning and ITR, TWR is more important for vertical turns and STR. Of course, it’s far more complex than that, but that’s it in nutshell.


  4. Nuno Gomes said

    Oh and i forgot:the Gripen has better wing loading than the Viper but worst T/W ratio and in NATO exercices it cannot outperform the F-16…they are very equal fighters in a dogfight (source:Combat aircraft magazine and the blog The Aviationist) P.S-You should buy this mouths CA magazine:it has a very good article about the A-10.


    • picard578 said

      Gripen C has won quite few dogfights against F-16C, and it does have better instanteneous turn rate – 30 deg/s vs 26 deg/s. Rafale has better turn rates than Gripen C though, but it has both lower wing loading and higher TWR in combat configuration (wing loading of 276 kg/m2 and TWR of 1,22 with 50% fuel, 4 AMRAAM and 2 Sidewinder versus Gripen’s wing loading of 287 kg/m2 and TWR of 0,95 in the same configuration).


  5. picard578 said

    When I have thought bit more, yes, replacing F-16 with Gripen is politically unacceptable to say at least, so I made a new presentation.


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