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
The U.S. Air Force could pick Lockheed Martin’s T-50 for its next trainer. Lockheed Martin photo New jets require a new trainer by DAVE MAJUMDAR The U.S. Air Force is working on a set of system specifications for a new next-generation advanced jet trainer to replace the long-serving Northrop T-38 Talon, which... Read more
Atomic bombs weren’t the only horror in store by JOSEPH TREVITHICK In May, President Barack Obama’s historic visit to Hiroshima reignited discussions of whether the United States actually needed to drop atomic bombs to force Japan to surrender at the end of World War II. What these debates didn’t touch... Read more
But the flying branch isn’t entirely convinced by JOSEPH TREVITHICK As the U.S. Air Force faces the prospect of a severe and potentially unavoidable budget crisis, the service has every incentive to save money by squeezing extra life out of older airplanes. New winglets for venerable C-130 transports are... Read more
A Polish P.11 fighter before takeoff. Photo via Wikipedia It actually took two weeks by SEBASTIEN ROBLIN When the 1950s T.V. documentary series Air Power got around to covering the opening battles of World War II, it unfortunately reinforced a popular, and entirely incorrect, notion. “The Polish air force is... Read more
Bombers could pound terrorists in Libya in a future intervention by JOSEPH TREVITHICK The U.S. Air Force’s iconic B-52 Stratofortresses have become a regular sight at war games across Europe. But as terrorist groups wreak havoc across North Africa, the lumbering bombers are headed farther south. On June 2, three... Read more
An F/A-18 Super Hornet takes off from the USS ‘John C. Stennis’ in May 2013. U.S. Navy photo It’s a full-blown crisis by DAVE MAJUMDAR The U.S. Navy’s strike fighter squadrons are in dire straits with only one out of three Boeing F/A-18 Hornet airframes being ready for war at any... Read more
A laser at the Air Force Research Laboratory’s Starfire Optical Range in New Mexico. U.S. Army photo Precision-guided missile swarms are the main threat, and that requires a big rethink by ROBERT BECKHUSEN The U.S. Air Force relies on more than 5,000 aircraft to give it unmatched dominance over every other... Read more
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