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Tag Archives: F-35

F-35 vs F-18: It’s child’s play

Breaking a complex problem down to its lowest common denominator is often an effective method for solving said problem. In the case of the F-35, what if a child were given a toy F-35 to play fighter planes with his brother, who has 3 F-18 Super Hornets? Well, funny you should ask…

Questions answered about the Dutch F-35 debacle

After former Dutch defence chief Dick Berlijn, and defence expert, Peter Wijninga, wrote an article espousing the argument FOR the Dutch government to acquire the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, Defence IQ’s Yousuf Malik casts a critical eye over the article and asks: are there better alternatives to the F-35?

The pair were recently interviewed [in Dutch] by the popular news website NU for a well-meaning article meant to counter The Hague’s dismay with the growing cost of the stealthy aircraft.

But the argument has holes like Swiss cheese…..or perhaps gaping spaces like slow-moving windmill blades is more a more appropriate description.

The F-35 is more expensive and isn’t as fast or manoeuvrable as has been claimed – it’s hugely delayed and questions have been raised about it’s stealth capabilities. These are the arguments we look at – please read the article in full here.

We’re keen to hear your thoughts – do you agree or disagree with this article? Would you like to write a follow-up article in response? Email comments or article submissions to:

F-35 decision is announced, finally

Defence Secretary Philip Hammond has finally announced that the UK will be reverting to the jump-jet F-35B variant of the Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) programme after costs to modify the Queen Elizabeth-class (QEC) carriers for the F-35C fighter jet began to spiral.

The announcement comes as little surprise after numerous reports surfaced about the growing debate over the contentious JSF programme. Under Gordon Brown’s administration, the UK originally signed up for the Short Take-Off and Vertical Landing (STOVL) F-35B fighter but after the coalition government came to power it opted for the F-35C “cats and traps” variant following the 2010 the Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR).

Reverting to the STOVL variant will restore the UK’s carrier-strike capability by 2018, two years ahead of schedule. This continuous Carrier Strike capability was the key element of Hammond’s statement today.

“Carrier Strike with ‘cats and traps’ using the Carrier Variant jet no longer represents the best way of delivering Carrier Strike and I am not prepared to tolerate a three-year further delay to reintroducing our Carrier Strike capability,” said Defence Secretary Philip Hammond.

Read a detailed analysis on the decision here.

UK’s F-35 has inaugural flight, but will the programme get off the ground?

The UK’s F-35 Joint Strike Fighter aircraft took its inaugural flight last week at Lockheed Martin’s Fort Worth facility. During the 45 minute sortie test pilot Bill Gigliotti put the short takeoff/vertical landing (STOVL) Lightning II aircraft through a number of functional flight checks before being officially accepted by the UK MoD. The US programme is well underway, but this is the first international F-35 to hit the skies.

This BK-1 aircraft makes up one of the three F-35 fighters the MoD has already committed to buying; two F-35Bs and one F-35C.

Throughout the Easter recess Prime Minister David Cameron has been reviewing the F-35 programme after concerns over spiralling costs have forced Defence Secretary Philip Hammond to rethink which F-35 variant presents the best value for money for the government.

Click here to continue reading this article…

Royal Netherlands Air Force, US Air Force and Canadian Forces to discuss future of air superiority at International Fighter summit

Air forces world-wide will gather at the 11th Annual International Fighter conference to discuss the future of fighter programmes, fighter capabilities and air superiority

Military and industry experts will be gathering in London this October for the 11th Annual International Fighter conference to discuss the transition to 5th generation aircraft, the development of F-35 aircraft and the latest fighter capability programmes from China and Russia. The International Fighter conference, which unveiled its list of eminent speakers earlier this year, will bring together top representatives from air forces all over the world including the Royal Netherlands Air force, US air force, the Polish MoD, Canadian Forces and French Ministry of Defence.

As the premier summit for International Fighter professionals, the conference will cover the key upgrades air forces are making to weapons, sensors and avionics and how air forces globally are looking to extend the life span of their existing air frames through upgrades to the structural integrity of their fuselage, wings and tail sections. One of the major themes of this year’s conference will be to discuss how Russian and Chinese fighter capabilities are developing at a fast pace and how this will change the future face of air supremacy.

Theodore Herman from the Global Strike Systems division at The Boeing Company says of the upcoming summit: “This episode of the Fighter Conference showed how far this forum has come over the previous five years I have attended. It is achieving the “official” recognition as a credible forum for the fighter community.”

In spite of world-wide austerity measures, the fighter market is still strong. According to a report by Defence IQ, international fighter programmes have “a forecast value of $160 Billion over the next 10 years.” International Fighter 2010 will bring together senior decision makers to understand how this money will be invested and which programmes will be central to the fighter market

In addition to understanding the key trends in the fighter market, the summit will also provide an ideal opportunity for industry professionals to network with key military personnel. For information about how to get involved with the International Fighter Conference (19th-20th October, The Bloomsbury Hotel London) or to download exclusive and complimentary related interviews and articles visit

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