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Breaking Defense

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Sixth generation fighter

Roper Unveils PEO For Next Gen Digital Planes; Critics Grumble

Posted by Theresa Hitchens on


The new Advanced Aircraft PEO will “transform the Next Generation Air Dominance (NGAD) program into the Air Force’s Digital Century Series initiative.”

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With FCAS, French Air Force’s Renaissance Begins

Posted by Murielle Delaporte on


France’s Air Force imagines new and improved concepts of operations will flow from the Future Combat Aircraft System (FCAS).

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America’s Air Superiority Crisis

Posted by David Deptula on


  The Air Force already has a big hole in its capabilities for the future: it needs what it is calling Penetrating Counter Air, a very fast, long-range, sensor-loaded and furiously lethal aircraft. But that effort is designed to fill a need in 2030. Dave Deptula, head of the Air Force Association’s Mitchell Institute and… Keep reading →

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Airmen First, Weapons Second: SecAF James

Posted by Colin Clark on


 AFA: For the foreseeable future, Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James told me today, when push comes to shove, personnel funding should win and modernization must wait. “If you’re asking me if I have to choose between the two, then I vote for people,” she said. “I’m going to protect people.” Of course, the Air… Keep reading →

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Zap. Marines Like Lasers For F-35B

Posted by Colin Clark on


WASHINGTON: Lasers. On the F-35B. Ok, there’s no money, And no timetable. But the head of Marine requirements, Lt. Gen. Robert Walsh, told reporters he could “absolutely” see the Joint Strike Fighter armed with lasers. This is consistent with plans we’ve heard from Northrop Grumman for the notional sixth-generation fighter and with the heavy push… Keep reading →

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SecAF James Is Cool To F-22 Restart

Posted by Colin Clark on


PENTAGON: Restarting the F-22 line would probably be “cost-prohibitive,” says Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James. The idea for restarting the F-22 line was pushed hard by Rep. Randy Forbes, the outgoing chairman of the House Armed Services seapower and projection forces subcommittee. Forbes was defeated by Scott Taylor, a relatively unknown challenger, a Virginia state delegate who… Keep reading →

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‘Flying Coke Machine’ Would Replace A-10, If We Had $: Air Force Chief Welsh

Posted by Sydney J. Freedberg Jr. on


WASHINGTON: The Air Force wants to replace the aging but beloved A-10 “Warthog” with a robotic “flying coke machine” that loiters over the battlefield, dispensing firepower at the touch of a button, the outgoing Chief of Staff said this morning. (More on that concept below). Gen. Mark Welsh also wants a “sixth-generation fighter” that can… Keep reading →

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McCain Lays Down Law On F-35 Bulk Buy; Kendall Says It Works

Posted by Colin Clark on


CORRECTS: State of Sen. Angus King To Maine. CAPITOL HILL: Sen. John McCain does not want the Pentagon to put together a so-called bulk buy of F-35s, decrying the program’s repeated failures over the last 15 years. McCain, citing his status as taxpayer watchdog, said during today’s Senate Armed Service Committee’s hearing on the F-35 that… Keep reading →

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SecAF Unveils B-21 Bomber; Replies To McCain’s Contract Threat

Posted by Colin Clark on


AFA WINTER: The name is not nearly as euphonious as the B-3, nor as descriptive as Long Range Strike Bomber, but Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James has officially named Northrop Grumman’s aircraft the B-21 (hint — it’s the 21st century…). James, who rumors said would unveil some details about the bomber, only unveiled the… Keep reading →

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Northrop Unveils Sixth Gen Fighter Concept

Posted by Colin Clark on


PALMDALE, CALIF: Northrop Grumman unveiled its vision of the so-called sixth-generation fighter, showing reporters a laser-firing aircraft that looks like a cross between the B-2 bomber and the X-47B drone. Chris Hernandez, Northrop’s vice president for research, technology and advanced design, laid out the basic parameters for the sixth-gen fighter (Northrop refers to it as NG Air… Keep reading →

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