Danger Room: If The Military’s Future Stealth Jet Fails, The Navy’s Got a Backup Plan

25.03.13

Categorie: Air, David Axe, Naval, Stealth, Wired |
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A Super Hornet lands aboard the carrier USS <em>Dwight D. Eisenhower</em>. <em>Photo: Navy</em>

A Super Hornet lands aboard the carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower. Photo: Navy

by DAVID AXE

The U.S. Navy is carefully backing away from the troubled F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program — and putting in place a backup plan in case the trillion-dollar, jack-of-all-trades stealth jet can’t recover from mounting technical and budgetary woes. So much for the F-35 being too big to fail.

The Navy’s Plan B is still taking shape. But its outlines are coming into view, thanks in large part to recent comments from its top officer. It involves fewer F-35s (the Navy’ll still buy some) and more copies of the older Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet carrier-based fighter, which the Lockheed Martin-built F-35 was originally meant to replace. In the unlikely event the F-35C — the naval version of the radar-evading plane — gets cancelled, the Super Hornet could be upgraded past its current shelf life. The twin-engine F/A-18E/F is already getting new weapons. Extra fuel tanks and some stealth treatments could be added, as well.

Read the rest at Danger Room.

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3 Responses to “Danger Room: If The Military’s Future Stealth Jet Fails, The Navy’s Got a Backup Plan”

  1. Tony says:

    What are “stealth treatments” ? Do you mean adding radar absorbing material like a coating ? How much stealth can the F-18 get with that type of configuration ?

  2. jimmy says:

    The USAF has absolutely nothing to fear about anything on Earth except the remote possibility of an aerial invasion from a species from another galaxy. What really now concerns the USAF is its continued ability to dish out even more severe punishment against rivals/victims in any future conflicts as a result of the ‘sequester’. No concerns really.

  3. jimmy says:

    Please note: there’s a minor error in my comment; ‘USAF’ should be substituted with ‘US military air power’. Thanks.

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