T-50s. Alex Beltyukov photo via Wikimedia It’s the engines by DAVE MAJUMDAR United Aircraft Corporation is gearing up to start serial production of the Sukhoi T-50 PAK-FA fifth-generation stealth fighter, according to Russian media reports. The eighth prototype T-50 — which is nearly compliant with Moscow’s requirements for a next-generation fighter — is set to... Read more
The Boneyard at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Arizona. Digital Globe imagery A separate air power branch is inefficient and wasteful by MATTHEW GAULT The U.S. military has flown airplanes since the early 20th century. But the Air Force as an independent service branch is relatively recent — dating to 1947. During World War II,... Read more
An Apache helicopter in Afghanistan in May 2016. U.S. Army photo Coalition airpower gets closer to the action by RODRIGO UGARTE U.S. Army Apache helicopters unleashed their might on Islamic State positions in northern Iraq on June 12. The gunships assisted Iraqi troops working to isolate and retake the city of Mosul,... Read more
Peruvian air force A-37s. Photo via Wikipedia Aerial interdiction has cost innocent lives by RODRIGO UGARTE On April 20, 2001, Peruvian security forces, with CIA help, shot down a small floatplane over the Amazon near the Brazilian border. American missionary Veronica Bowers and her infant daughter died in the attack. Having filed... Read more
This week the Senate passed the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017 in an overwhelming bipartisan vote of 85 to 13. This is the most significant piece of defense reform legislation passed by the Senate in 30 years, containing major reforms to Pentagon organization, the defense acquisition... Read more
A Lewis Gun as an anti-aircraft weapon. Photo via Wikipedia In 1914, gunners began pointing their weapons toward the sky by MATTHEW MOSS World War I saw the first widespread use of airplanes, first as observation platforms and later in both air- and ground-attack roles. The strategic threat that observation planes... Read more
Iulia Gheorghiu art How much does a B-21 cost? No one will say … by DAN GRAZIER The U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee issued a severe blow to transparency and fiscal responsibility in May 2016. In a closed-door vote, the committee eliminated a requirement to disclose the development cost of the... Read more
Old EA-6Bs get a new role by JOSEPH TREVITHICK When the EA-6B Prowler electronic-warfare plane first entered service with the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps starting in 1971, its main job was to scramble enemy radars and radios with its powerful jammers. But with the Marines and the other U.S. armed... Read more
Via Wikipedia French balloons inspired a Prussian countermeasure by MATTHEW MOSS The first untethered balloon flight took place on Nov. 21, 1783, with the first military use occurring during the French Revolutionary Wars. A century later during the Franco-Prussian War, the French again deployed observation balloons — and when Prussian troops besieged... Read more
F-22. Photo via Wikipedia The ‘penetrating counterair’ system could replace F-22s by DAVID AXE Four years after the 195th and final F-22 Raptor stealth fighter rolled out of Lockheed Martin’s factory in Marietta, Georgia, the U.S. Air Force still hasn’t committed to developing a new manned air-superiority fighter. But the world’s... Read more