The Cheetah Was South Africa’s ‘Good Enough’ Fighter
Draken International, a Florida-based company which bills itself as the world’s largest private air force, will buy 12 Atlas Cheetah jet fighters from the South African arms company Denel. The addition of the Cheetah will add another warplane type to Draken’s inventory, and could soon see action in mock... Read more
Zapping North Korean Nukes With Microwave Weapons Is a Terrible Idea
One of the options that the United States is looking at to counter North Korea’s nuclear-tipped ballistic missiles is an experimental weapon called CHAMP. CHAMP stands for Counter-Electronics High-Powered Microwave Advanced Missile Project. It uses bursts of microwave energy — an electromagnetic pulse — to disable electronic systems. The idea would... Read more
Sneaky Drones for U.S. Navy Jamming Planes
Northrop Grumman is trying to convince the U.S. Navy to transform the branch’s EA-18G Growler electronic-warfare planes into motherships for small, slow-flying unmanned aerial vehicles that could extend the distance at which Growler crews can pinpoint enemy radars. The 12-foot-long “Dash X” drone fits inside the military’s Tactical Munition... Read more
Russia’s Su-57 Stealth Fighter Is Doomed to Fail
Westerns analysts have concluded that Russia’s fifth-generation Sukhoi Su-57 stealth fighter is unlikely to enter operational service before 2027. Postponements, cost-overruns and research and development-related problems mar the project. This should come as no surprise. The Su-57 program was never really viable. Back in early 2006, Russian president Vladimir... Read more
Seventy-Eight Years of Jet Fighters
On Aug. 27, 1939, a stubby-winged airplane made of unpainted steel alloy took off over Germany and soared into history. Instead of a pointy propeller hub in the nose, the Heinkel 178 had an open-mouthed turbojet intake, making it the first operational jet-powered aircraft. The He 178 could only... Read more
Pentagon to Congress — Please Don’t Make Us Deploy Missiles on the East Coast
On Nov. 28, North Korea tested a Hwasong-15 missile with sufficient range to hit targets on the East Coast of the United States, including Washington, D.C. This follows an earlier test in July which demonstrated Pyongyang’s ability to strike targets on the West Coast of North America. The U.S.... Read more
Kim Jong Un’s Latest Ballistic Missile Can Strike Almost Anywhere in America
After a months-long lull in activity, North Korea test launched an intercontinental ballistic missile on what appears to have been a lofted trajectory. According to the Pentagon, the weapon flew for a distance of 1,000 kilometers before splashing down near Japan. Very few details were immediately available. “Initial assessment... Read more
Russia Is Nearly Halting Stealth Fighter Production for a Decade
The Kremlin’s new state armament plan, which will run from 2018-2027, will continue modernization of the Russian Aerospace Forces. However, while Russia will continue to buy modern combat aircraft such as the Sukhoi Su-35S Flanker-E air superiority fighter and the Su-34 Fullback bomber, Moscow is not likely to make... Read more
China’s Stealth Fighter Is Helping to Sell Cars
Images of China’s J-31 stealth fighter are in high demand given the nature of the technology and rumors about its future. It was odd, then, that the prototype fifth-generation fighter jet recently appeared in photos posing next to an SUV. Turns out, the bizarre photographs are not an advertisement... Read more
Keeping the U.S. Air Force’s C-130s Flying
The U.S. Air Force is progressing with a massive technological overhaul of its warzone-tested C-130 aircraft, giving the aircraft new radios, digital avionics, collision avoidance technology and reinforced “wing-boxes,” service officials said. “The thing that causes the greatest risk to the airplane is the life of the wing. We... Read more