The smears about the F-22 are false. Here’s why.

The F-22 is the most capable, most versatile, most survivable, and most lethal fighterplane ever devised or flown. It also has the dubious distinction of being the most maligned combat aircraft in history, with its ignorant detractors cooking up untrue stories about it or using rare accidents or systems malfunctions – which happen with every type of military aircraft from time to time – to smear it.

Some, such as extremely leftist, pro-weak-defense propagandists Winslow Wheeler and Pierre Sprey of the Center for Defense Misinformation, claim that the recent hypoxia (lack of oxygen) symptoms experienced by pilots are, supposedly, proof that the F-22 is crappy and should be trashed. But there is a simple solution – installing a better Onboard Oxygen Generation System (OBOGS) – and that is already underway. The House Appropriations Committee has passed a bill appropriating money to do just that. Problem solved.

Moreover, it may be possible that the F-22’s performance envelope – how high and how fast it can fly – is beyond the limits of what human organisms can tolerate.

Others criticize the F-22 for its cost. But the F-22 actually costs only 150 mn dollars per copy. It was terminated in favor of the F-35, which was supposed to be more versatile and cheaper.Yet, it is anything but. To be sure, it’s a very capable plane, but it does not perform as well as the F-22, whether in Air to Air or Air to Ground combat, and all of its variants are much more expensive than the F-22. The cheapest, the F-35A, comes at 197 mn dollars per copy.

Yet other ignorant critics, such as Sen. John McCain (RINO-AZ), who believes that the only wars the US will ever will be against insurgencies and primitive countries unable to contest control of the air, claim that the F-22 “has no purpose”. Yet, they’re totally wrong. The F-22 has a clear purpose: to ensure American air dominance over the newest Russian and Chinese aircraft. The newest Russian and Chinese fighters already in service include various Flanker variants, including the newest one, the Su-35BM, as well as the JF-17, all of which are superior in many respects (including amount of armament, rate of climb, maneuverability, radar capability, and age) to the F-15 (not to mention the F-16). These aircraft are also much cheaper than the F-15 (its newest variant, the F-15 Silent Eagle, costs 100 mn USD per copy) and are available to anyone able to pay for them. So the F-15 is already facing fierce competition.

But Russia and China both have an ace in their sleeves. Russia’s ace is the PAKFA, scheduled to enter service in 2016, and China’s is the J-20, due to enter service the following year. When they join the inventory, they will make EVERY Western fighter other than the F-22 and the F-35 impotent, irrelevant, and useless. At that time, the USAF might as well retire all of its F-15s and F-16s immediately and spare itself the expense of maintaining these old, useless geezers and use that money to resume F-22 production or build stealthy bombers.

The PAKFA and the J-20 will both be highly stealthy, highly capable in A2A and A2G combat, and highly lethal. Only the F-22 and the F-35 can match and outperform them. And it is exactly their purpose to do so.

Although McCain and many others still delude themselves that the only wars America will ever again fight will be against insurgents and weak countries unable to contest control of the air, they’re wrong. Most of America’s potential future adversaries, including the most likely and most dangerous ones, are nation states capable of acquiring a respectable number of advanced SAMs and/or fighters, including Russia, China, Venezuela, and Iran.

The other threat to American air dominance is the proliferation of advanced Russian and Chinese SAM systems such as the S-300, the Tor-M1, the S-400, and the Hongqin family. These systems can detect and shoot down any nonstealthy aircraft easily. That means they can exclude any nonstealthy plane from operating in the area they cover until they are taken out. That, in turn, means that America’s legacy aircraft cannot operate over such areas and are therefore useless for any scenario where such advanced SAM systems or advanced Russian or Chinese fighters are present. It relegates them solely to COIN operations and to intercepting unescorted Russian bombers.

Oh, and speaking of intercepting Russian bombers, F-22s have done so repeatedly and effortlessly. See here.

The F-22 and the F-35, by being highly stealthy (see this comparison of the RCS of various fighter types), can easily avoid detection by radar. Adm. Jonathan Greenert’s recent statement about low-frequency radar does not change this. LF radar can, if developed further, warn people of the presence of stealthy aircraft, but cannot accurately acquire or track them, let alone guide any weapons to shoot them down. Thus, F-22s and F-35s will remain undetectable for many decades to come.

Yet, other critics of the F-22 falsely claim that it has been “defeated” in the 2012 Red Flag exercise by the EF-2000 “Typhoon”. The exercise was not realistic at all, however. It assumed that Raptor pilots would allow EF-2000s to get so close to Raptors that the fight would be within visual range; that it would actually be a dogfight. That is completely unrealistic, however, because that’s not how air combat will be waged in the future, and because F-22s would not, in any event, allow EF-2000s to get close to them and stage a dogfight. These stealthy, undetectable, faceless fighters would shoot the “Typhoons” down with their long-range AIM-120C/D AMRAAM missiles effortlessly. If the enemy used a massive fleet of EF-2000s (who, besides EU-embargoed China, can afford to do that?), a small number of Typhoons may get close to the Raptors and stage a dogfight, but the Raptors would still win, and the enemy would pay a heavy price for that dogfight in terms of unacceptably high aircraft losses.

(Some people also allege that the AIM-120 AMRAAM has a shorter range than the Typhoon’s future Meteor missile. This is clearly wrong, however. The AIM-120C-5 has a range of over 105 kms, and the AIM-120D, already in full production, a range of over 180 kms. The Meteor, which is still in development and won’t enter production until 2013, has a range of just slightly over 100 kms, and the Russian AA-12 Adder “Amraamski” has a range of 160 kms.)

Besides, the only countries that have ordered EF-2000s are America’s allies: Britain, Italy, Spain, Germany, and Saudi Arabia. But even if the EU abolished its arms embargo on China and sold EF-2000s to the PRC (even though the PLAAF is not interested), it would be no cause of concern for the USAF… at least for the F-22 community.

China, Russia, and other enemies of the US do not need the EF-2000, because as soon as J-20s and PAKFAs enter service, they will render EVERY Western fighter other than the F-22 and the F-35 irrelevant and useless. That includes the EF-2000.

Today, stealthiness means survivability, and survivability means everything. As Rebecca Grant of the Mitchell Institute rightly says:

“Precision weapons and rapid targeting information mean little if aircraft are unable to survive engagements with enemy air defenses. In addition to costing the lives of pilots,high levels of attrition can ultimately affect the outcome of the theater campaign. One of the most critical factors in determining the success of an air operation is survivability.”

In short, the F-22 Raptor is the most capable, most versatile, and most useful fighter ever built. And at 150 mn per copy, it is much cheaper than all three variants of the F-35. The smears that its critics spread about it say more about the critics than the F-22 itself. They should be ashamed of themselves for spreading such lies.

I think that the very reason why they smear and malign the F-22 is exactly because of how capable, survivable, and versatile they is. The vast majority of its detractors (including Wheeler and Sprey) are proponents of a weak defense and of massive defense cuts, so obviously they don’t want the USAF to have such a capable fighterplane type.

31 thoughts on “The smears about the F-22 are false. Here’s why.”

  1. Re: “The F-22 is the most capable, most versatile, most survivable, and most lethal fighterplane ever devised or flown. It also has the dubious distinction of being the most maligned combat aircraft in history, with its ignorant detractors cooking up untrue stories about it or using rare accidents or systems malfunctions – which happen with every type of military aircraft from time to time – to smear it.” Bravo, Zbigniew, for defending this most-critical of aircraft – one that should be a cornerstone of our air defense programme. Concerning the vitriol and criticism of the F-22, wouldn’t it be interesting to track those criticisms back to their sources and beyond, and find if our enemies or would-be enemies had any hand in creating them?

  2. F-22 costs 250 million USD flyaway, 421 million USD unit procurement. F-35 costs 200-220 million USD flyaway, 305 million USD unit procurement, although, if cuts happen as I expect them to, F-35s unit procurement cost will go beyond 500 million USD per aircraft.

    It is VERY EASY to counter stealth aircraft by going passive and forcing them to play your own game. That is why Eurofighter Typhoon has IRST (and so does Dassault Rafale) and is about to get passive radar. Against completely passive opponent, stealth aircraft are at disadvantage, since they either have to rely on passive sensors themselves – thus leveling the playing field – or go active and betray their location, making it easy for enemy to detect them far before they detect him.

    SAMs have also historically been not very effective, with average Pk of below 0,5%. Moreover, VHF radars can easily detect stealth aircraft.

    As for Eurofighter Typhoon vs F-22, I have to shoot down your balooney. Eurofighter Typhoon is equipped with advanced jammers capable of countering AESA radars. In exercises, F-22 was unable to lock on Typhoon from more than 30 kilometers head-on. Typhoon’s IRST can detect F-22 from 50-100 kilometers, and its RWR has proven to be able to easily detect F-22s radar. Do your math.

    1. You are wrong.

      The flyaway cost of a single F-22, according to Wikipedia and Air Power Australia, is just $137 mn; the total unit cost, including R&D costs, is $377 mn. The flyaway cost of a single F-35A is over $150 mn, and for F-35B/C the weapon systems cost is well over $230 mn per plane (per Wikipedia). YOU do the math. The Typhoon is also more expensive than the F-22.

      Countering stealth aircraft is never very easy. Traditional radar has a hard time detecting them, and infrared seekers would have a hard time with the F-22, too, due to its slit engine exhaust nozzles, which leave small IR traces. The F-22 has an APG-77 AESA radar which can detect enemy aircraft at ranges far greater than the range at which these aircraft could detect the Raptor; and the F-22’s AMRAAM missile, with a range of 180 kms, allows it to get the first shot and take out enemy aircraft beore they could even detect the Raptor. Game, set and match.

      The F-22 would have had the InfraRed Search and Tracking (IRST) system, too, but it was wrongly deleted to save money. Adding it to the F-22, however, would entail only small costs. AGAINST the F-22, however, an IRST will not work for the same reason I already stated – the F-22’s thermal (i.e. infrared) signature is very small due to its design, including its slit engine nozzles (as opposed to those on the F-35 and pre-5th generation aircraft such as the EF-2000 Typhoon. “Is about to get passive radar” is not the same as “it already has passive radar”. Even then, it will still not be in the same league as the F-22, which will be able to detect a plane with the EF-2000’s planform easily, and outranges its Meteors with its AIM-120D missiles.

      SAMs have historically been very effective against aircraft, as demonstrated by the thousands of American aircraft shot down over Vietnam by the NVA’s meat-grinder SAM network. VHF radars can detect stealth aircraft, but the F-22 defeats enemy air defense systems by kinematics alone, due to its high speed and high ceiling. At 65 angels and 2.25 Mach, it flies too high and too fast for enemy IADSes to detect it.

      The results of the “exercises” you refer to have to be treated VERY skeptically, because we don’t know what the conditions and assumptions of these exercises were. By my experience, when American fighters partake in such exercises, many restrictions which would not aply in real life are imposed on them to allow non-American aircraft to “win”.

      1. Wikipedia is not a reliable source, and neither is USAF. Air Power Australia is also not a reliable source; author is not an insider, and he doesn’t seem to have put much if any effort in researching history of air combat.

        Cost figures you are quoting for F-22 were accurate in 2006, but now is 2012. That is 12 years of accidents, problems, fixes and associated R&D. Same for F-35.

        Here are costs through time (figures before 2011 are adjusted to 2011 USD):

        1988 – 60 million USD per plane flyaway (est.)
        2005 – 258 million USD per plane
        2006 – 361 million USD per plane (177 million USD per plane flyaway cost)
        2008 – 177 – 216 million USD per plane flyaway cost
        2011 – 412 million USD per plane (250 million USD per plane flyaway cost)
        2012 – 421 million USD per plane (250 million USD per plane flyaway cost)
        150 million USD official flyaway cost
        678 million USD lifecycle cost
        61 000 USD per hour operating cost

        2001 – 84.2 million USD per plane
        2011 – 207.6 million USD per plane (304.15 million USD per plane with R&D)
        2012 – 197 million USD for F35A, 237,7 million USD for F35B, and 236,8 million USD for F35C (all flyaway)

        PAK FA
        2011 – 110 million USD per plane flyaway cost

        2006 – 142 million USD per plane program unit cost (118 million USD per plane flyaway), Tranche 2 (?)
        2008 – 122 million USD per plane (68.9 million GBP, 77.7 million EUR) flyaway cost
        2009 – 90 million EUR per plane (141 million USD) (Tranche 3)
        2011 – 199 million USD per plane program unit cost (121,5 million USD per plane flyaway), Tranche 3
        18 000 USD per hour operating cost

        Dassault Rafale
        Rafale C
        2008 – 82.3 million USD flyaway cost; 135.8 million USD unit program cost
        Rafale M
        2008 – 90.5 million USD flyaway cost; 145.7 million USD unit program cost
        16 500 USD per hour operating cost


        I am well aware of F-22s IR signature reduction features, but while these reduce signature generated by engines (albeit not to any high degree), parts of IR signature caused by skin friction and compression of air remain unchanged. F-22 will be harder to detect by IRST than F-15, but it will still be detectable from combat-useful range, as it is very large, and very hot, despite all IR signature reduction measures.

        As for missile, you need to have missile lock to launch; most new aircraft have jammers that are very effective even against AESA radars, meaning that F-22 has to close enough for its radar to penetrate the jamming – which is well within the range Typhoon can detect it from with IRST (50-100 km).

        In Kosovo War, Serb SAMs had Pk of 0,355 %, hitting 2 F-117s and 1 F-16 out of 845 launches. US jet aircraft in Vietnam War were extremely sluggish, and had no ECM; also, large number of aircraft brought down were heavy bombers. In short, Vietnam War effectiveness of SAMs is not representative of what it would be in modern war environment.

        And as you just said – F-22 has advantage against SAMs due to kinematics, not due to stealth. So why shelling out so much money?

        And as for exercises, I doubt it. Exercises have set goal, and limitations to aircraft are only when they are simulating OPFOR aircraft. As F-22 is always Blue Force, these limitations never apply to it. Only thing I have noticed is that F-22 in exercises carries Luneberg lens, most likely for making easier job for air control.

      2. Your comments are ignorant garbage, and there are so many wrong statements in them that it’s hard to know where to start. I’ll guess I’ll start with the chronologically first comment and respond to the rest later.

        First of all, Air Power Australia is THE most credible source on airpower matters – far more credible than you or I will ever be. It consists of highly-qualified, well-respected scientists and of retired RAAF officers responsible for, inter alia, leading fighter squadrons and acquiring weapon systems for the RAAF. They know more about these issues than you will ever know, so I would advise you to respect them.

        The USAF is also a very credible source, given that it’s the operator of the F-22, its pilots (current and former) have flown it (unlike you), and it has no interest in lying as it is not asking for appropriations for further F-22 aircraft.

        Your figures of the F-22’s costs are completely wrong. The F-22’s flyaway cost is currently 137-150 mn USD per plane, and even including R/D costs does not bring it to 421 mn per unit – barely 377 mn. So your claims about the F-22’s costs, including flyaway costs, are completely false and fabricated. This is nothing new; it’s a typical tactic by F-22 bashers to concoct false stories about its cost.

        The costs for the Typhoon are very similar, and the Typhoon, according to the UK National Audit Office, has suffered its fair share of cost overruns (and will cost even more to upgrade in the future). Yet, for a similar cost, the RAF has acquired decisively INFERIOR aircraft (yes, inferior, as we shall later see).

        As for your second comment, it is also full of factual errors. But before I point them out, let me warn you: just because you claim something is “irrelevant”, it doesn’t make it so. Facts don’t become irrelevant just because they’re inconvienient to you.

        The F-22 is not “inferior” to the Typhoon in terms of size and weight. It’s larger and heavier, but due to its much more powerful engines, it enjoys a significantly HIGHER thrust/weight ratio (1.26:1) than the Typhoon, and thus would easily outturn the Eurofighter and defeat it in close combat. The F-22’s size is actually an asset, as the Raptor has much room to grow and be upgraded, while the Typhoon has little room for upgrades and additions.

        The F-22 has a BETTER sensor suite (even now, without an IRST) than the Typhoon, primarily thanks to its APG-77 radar, which is more powerful than the Typhoon’s, and in real life wouldn’t be nearly as easy to jam as you claim it would be. Adding an IRST to the F-22 could be done easily and at little cost, and thus, the Typhoon loses its sole advantage over the F-22.

        AWACS aircraft are vulnerable only if in close range; if they stay at a safe distance from the enemy, they won’t get shot down. The radar on modern AWACS aircraft (which are proliferating globally), especially the APY-2 radar on the E-3 and E-767 and the E-2D’s UHF radar, are hard to jam and have a very long range, permitting them to detect a Typhoon while staying outside its missile range (the E-3 was originally built to detect Soviet aircraft from safe, very long distances outside Soviet missiles’ ranges). If you were talking about RUSSIAN aircraft armed with the Novator missile, you would’ve had a case, but a Typhoon armed with the inferior Meteor missile (assuming that it even enters service) or with the AIM-120C doesn’t stand a chance to kill an AWACS that is safely away.

        #5 is NOT irrelevant, as BVR missiles have improven their effectiveness dramatically since the Cold War (even in Desert Storm, they were far more effective than in Vietnam, Yom Kippur, or the Bekka Valley), the AIM-120D is far more effective than the Sparrow, and future air warfare’s results will depend first and foremost on who gets first-look, first-shot, first-kill capability. The claim that the Meteor has a kinematic advantage over the AIM-120D is false. Firstly, the F-22 and the F-15 are much faster than the Typhoon while having the same combat ceiling (65 angels), and thus, by virtue of their higher speed, can send their AIM-120Ds even further than their nominal range of over 180 kms would suggest, and secondly, the Meteor missile doesn’t exist. It’s under development and will not enter service until 2013 at the earliest. I’m saying “at the earliest” because your European “weapon” programs have a history of arriving very late and very over-budget even more so than the DOD’s weapon programs. Your beloved Typhoon is a case in point, as is the Horizon class, the FREMM class, and the A400M. BTW, you know what does FSTA stand for in RAF slang? F***ing short of tankers again.

        The Meteor will not enter service until 2013 at the very earliest, and neither will the IRIS-T (another Euro weapon project). European militaries therefore still use… the AMRAAM and the AIM-9X Sidewinder (good choice!).

        I also strongly doubt that the Typhoon can cue its Meteors to the F-22 (assuming they ever enter service, that is).

        I also strongly doubt that jammers would give the F-22’s position accurately enough for a missile (but even if that were so, the F-22 can easily outturn it; the Typhoon cannot outturn enemy missiles). But even if it were true, such downside applies to the Typhoon as much as to the F-22. Thus, if the Typhoon uses its jammers and thus gives its position, and the F-22 is equipped with an IRST system (which would cost little), the F-22 can launch missiles at it.

        This is a double-edged sword.

        The F-22 does not need to enter the Typhoon’s detection zone. It can kill the Typhoon with BVR missiles from a safe distance; but even if BVR missiles fail, the F-22 can defeat the Typhoon in close range combat, thanks to its decisively superior T/W ratio and TVC capability.

        The Typhoon does NOT have superior agility vs the F-22; it is actually inferior due to its much lower T/W ratio (1.15:1 vs the Raptor’s 1.26:1, both at full combat load and 50% fuel).

        #10 is not irrelevant, and just claiming that it is doesn’t make it so. Fighter aircraft almost never fight alone; they fight in flights. The F-22 will not be outnumbered, because the Typhoon has entered service only in limited quantities with the RAF, the Luftwaffe, the RSAF, and the Spanish and Italian AFs. The RAF has only 160 Typhoons; the RSAF has 72 on order; the Luftwaffle, the Spanish AF, and the Italian AF have even fewer. The USAF has 184 F-22s, and more may be produced if Mitt Romney wins the upcoming election.

        Your ignorant “it’s irrelevant” ramblings prove nothing but your ignorance, and your completely false cost figures for the F-22 expose nothing but your bias and your ideological agenda to smear the F-22 while touting the Typhoon. Pathetic.

      3. One more thing: Today’s Russian and Chinese SAM systems (or to call them more properly, IADSes) – which have infested Russia and China and have proliferated globally to countries such as Venezuela and Belarus – are far more lethal and far more effective than those of the Vietnam War era. It is therefore utterly ridiculous to dismiss them because Soviet SAMs of the Vietnam War era didn’t work well in the Kosovo War (and BTW, they shot down only one F-117, not two).

        Today’s Russian and Chinese IADSes have far more powerful, long-ranged radars (which are very difficult to jam) and far more powerful and long-ranged missiles, enabling one SAM system to shoot targets as far away as Charlotte and Buffalo if it were to deployed (hypothetically) in Washington DC. (By contrast, the coverage area of a Vietnam War era SAM system such as the SA-2 Guideline was only about the size of Washington DC itself). These SAM systems are fully mobile, rather than tied to a prepared site, and can relocate in minutes rather than hours or days, enabling shoot and scoot tactics, and can be camouflaged until they need to fire. Today’s Russian and Chinese IADSes can detect nonstealthy aircraft such as the Typhoon, with its huge RCS, from hundreds of kilometers away. The same applies to the Rafale. Their canards might furthermore increase their RCS to ground- and aircraft-based radar alike.

        The majority of the aircraft used by the US in Vietnam were sluggish aircraft. That’s true. Well, guess what? The B-52 is still in service, as is the heavy, sluggish, nonstealthy B-1 with its large RCS.

        Exercises are always based on pre-determined assumptions, ROE, and restrictions. The assumptions of Red Flag were evidently, judged by the way they were conducted (e.g. no AWACS aircraft, individual fighters fighting against each other) on the assumption that F-22 pilots and operational planners would actively cooperate in getting themselves killed. These are ridiculous assumptions.

        The F-22 will not be detectable from any range useful to the Typhoon, given its very small IR signature, and it is nowhere near as hot as the Typhoon (especially the Eurofighter’s rear end).

        The Rafale M’s flyaway cost today (not in 2008) is nowhere near 90.5 mn USD; it is far higher, at 124 mn USD (i.e. 90 mn EUR) per plane. Likewise, the Typhoon’s real cost at present, including R/D costs, is 125 mn GBP per plane.

        The unit costs you cited for the F-35B and C are not flyaway costs; they are total weapon system costs that include the cost of missiles, training, etc., and the cost of research and development. Comparing those to the flyaway costs of other aircraft is like comparing apples to oranges.

      4. You ignore history and reality, yet you call my comments “ignorant garbage”. You can believe all the crap you want, but don’t try to push your ignorance on me.

        1) Air Power Australia may cosist of experts, but it does not mean they do not have an agenda. F-22 is better fighter than many other (Super Hornet, F-35), but it is not the best fighter aircraft in the world.

        2) USAF is operator of F-22, but USAF has interest in overhyping F-22s capabilities; that is called propaganda. Not only to intimidate possible opponents (China, Russia) but also to put pressure on Congress to restart F-22 production.

        3) Your costs are, as I have said before, outdated. Flyaway cost of 137 million USD was last correct in 2005 at latest. In early 2009, it was 220 million USD. Do your research before posting something. Likewise, 377 million USD unit cost was correct in maybe 2006 or 2007 (I don’t have exact value, but in 2006 unit procurement cost was 361 million USD). By 2011, it has risen to 412 million USD per aircraft, and now it is 421 million USD per aircraft.

        4) Eurofighter Typhoon costs 118 – 122 million USD per aircraft flyaway, possibly up to 141 million USD per aircraft for Tranche 3. Unit procurement cost is 200 million USD per aircraft.

        5) I know far better than you that something is not irrelevant, or relevant, because someone says so. But I have done my research on aviation military history; you seem to be limited to USAF and Lockheed Martin propaganda. Your ignorance is obvious from your claim that F-22s purpose is to match and outperform PAK FA and J-20; it is opposite. F-22 came first, and Russian and Chinese MICs saw opportunity for profit, and pushed for stealth fighters.

        6) Your claim about F-22s thrust to weight ratio advantage over Typhoon is factually incorrect, but nothing else can be expected if you take figures from Wikipedia without checking them. F-22s thrust to weight ratio is 1,28 for aircraft with 50% fuel, 2 Sidewinders and 4 AMRAAM; with 50% fuel, 6 AMRAAM and 2 Sidewinders, it is 1,277. At 50% fuel 4 AMRAAM and 2 Sidewinders, Typhoon’s thrust-to-weight ratio is 1,28. Typhoon thus has parity in thrust to weight ratio, and significant advatage in wing loading (277 kg/m2 vs 319 kg/m2 for 50% fuel, 4 AMRAAM and 2 Sidewinders).

        7) In real life, AESA radar can easily be jammed; generally, jammers of same generation reduce lock-on range to around 1/3 of what it would be without jammer. F-22 also does not have any sensors that can detect passive enemy aircraft completely passively, whereas many (not all, unfortunately) Typhoons have IRST.

        8) AWACS may detect enemy, but F-22 still has to get close enough to lock on itself, as AWACS will be unable to do so. And what is preventing anyone from acquiring Novator missile?

        9) BVR missiles have only “proven” effectiveness against technologically inferior, outnumbered and mostly incompetent enemies who didn’t even bother to evade missiles in most cases. Eurofighter Typhoons flown by Saudi or European pilots (only countries using them right now) do not fall in any of these categories compared to F-22s, let alone all of them. And advantage in range doesn’t mean anything if you can’t lock on to target to launch missile.

        10) Regarding European weapon programmes, check your facts. Both Dassault Rafale and Saab Gripen were delivered on schedule and under the cost (Gripen NG unfortunately seems to be going in opposite direction), whereas majority of Typhoon’s problems were political in nature, as opposed to technical problems of F-22.

        11) Typhoon has superior agility to F-22, so saying that it cannot outturn enemy missile while F-22 can is bullshit. F-22 has thrust vectoring, but it only increases agility in regimes where control surfaces are not effective – that is, either post-stall or low subsonic speeds, which are suicidal in combat, or supersonic speeds, where F-22 can’t remain for long. Thus, maneuverability will fall down to weight, drag, wing loading and thrust loading – and in all of these areas Typhoon has advantage.

        12) F-22 is stealth aircraft, thus it cannot use jammers as it relies on remaining undetected (which is impossibility anyway, but that’s the dream). Typhoon relies on airframe performance – superior weapons, superior agility (while missiles may be – for now – comparable, Typhoon has superior cannon).

        13) F-22 cannot lock on to Typhoon from large enough distance; and when it reaches that distance, Typhoon has already acquired it on IRST, and possibly launched a missile or two. If F-22 is equipped with IRST, F-22 is again at disadvantage as it is far larger and hotter aircraft.

        14) Agility is a sum of wing loading, thrust loading (or thrust-to-weight ratio), drag and inertia. F-22 is at disadvantage in all of these areas except thrust-to-weight ratio. At standard combat load (6 AMRAAM and 2 Sidewinder) and 50% fuel, TWR is 1,28 for F-22 and 1,25 for Typhoon, which is only factor where F-22 has advantage. Which probably is why are you constantly bringing it up, however it is not only factor determining agility.

        15) USAF has 187 F-22s, but for cost of each F-22 you can have two Typhoons. And how many F-22s will end up for scrap if Romney destroys US economy? There are 344 Typhoons in service, and with number of Typhoons on order, it goes up to 704 aircraft. Out of that, European countries have 320 Typhoons in service, and 312 on order.

        16) Everything I write here is result of objective research. I am not to blame for the fact that you do not want to let go of outdated figures you cling to in order to prove your agenda.

      5. Two more things: Eurofighter Typhoon has ESM which can target enemy aircraft completely passively; also, only fighter that actually launches BVR missile can provide mid-flight update, without which BVR missiles have even more meager Pk.

      6. Even without this, the AMRAAM has a 59% (0.59) Pk, which means 2 AMRAAMs are statistically enough to bring down an enemy fighter. Both capabilities that you’re talking about can be easily added to the F-22 at little cost.

      7. AMRAAM only has such Pk against targets that do not maneuver, do not use countermeasures and do not shoot back. It is extremely optimistic to expect even remotely similar Pk – or Pk in double-digit percentages, even – against fully equipped and competently piloted 4,5th generation aircraft.

      8. But pilots who have never seen any combat – let alone A2A combat – cannot be considered competent.

    2. The only circumstances under which a Typhoon could defeat an F-22 is if F-22 pilots actively collaborated with their operational planners in getting themselves killed, by:

      1) Not using the F-22’s powerful APG-77 AESA radar.
      2) Not using any AWACS aircraft.
      3) Not following current American fighter technology.
      4) Flying at low speeds and low altitudes.
      5) Not using the AIM-120D missile.
      6) Not using any jammers of its own.
      7) Not using any towed decoys, chaff, or flares to spoof enemy missiles.
      8) Not using a Missile Approach Warning System.
      9) Not using the F-22’s supercruising thrust vector control engines to outturn enemy missiles.
      10) Sending single aircraft rather than groups of 3-4 Raptors.

      The only thing in which the F-22 is inferior to the Typhoon is that the Raptor lacks an IRST, but that can be easily added to it at little cost to taxpayers.

      1. F-22 is inferior to Typhoon in:
        1) size
        2) weight
        3) wing loading
        4) sensory suite
        and it has comparable thrust-to-weight ratio in AtA configuration. Thus, Typhoon will always outmaneuver F-22 in WVR combat, unless both aircraft somehow end up flying at speeds below 150 knots, as at these speeds, control surfaces are less effective and F-22s TVC begins to actually provide increased agility.

        As for your points:
        1) F-22s radar can be easily jammed by modern jammers.
        2) AWACS aircraft are vulnerable, and it also has to penetrate enemy jamming. Of course, it can do it from longer range, but I doubt range is so high that it wouldn’t be vulnerable to Meteor.
        3) Please explain.
        4) If under “low speeds” you mean “subsonic speeds above 150 knots + transonic speeds”, you are correct.
        5) Irrelevant. BVR missiles have never proven themselves as reliable against technologically comparable aircraft, and Typhoon’s Meteor, while shorter-ranged, has kinematic advatage against AIM-120D. Only problem is wether Typhoon can use IRST to cue it to F-22 – and before you say “but F-22 will launch far before Typhoon detects it” – it won’t. Typhoon has jammers, and these have proven themselves effective.
        6) First, F-22 is stealth aircraft. If it uses jammers, it will give out its position – not exact position, but enough for IRST-equipped aircraft to find it. Second, issue about having to enter Typhoon’s detection zone remains.
        7) Typhoon has everything listed, plus superior agility.
        8) As above.
        9) Typhoon is also highly agile in supersonic regime thanks to its canards – maybe not as agile as F-22, but more than most aircraft out there. And thrust vectoring causes large loss in energy when used.
        10) Irrelevant; nothing changes. And F-22s will be outnumbered.

  3. You’re the one who is ignoring history and reality and proving his ignorance here. Moreover, your English is as crappy as your claims about the F-22 and the Typhoon.

    1) APA has no agenda (other than stating the truth). They conduct impartial, unbiased, peer-reviewed analysis. They’re not an American think-tank, they’re not tied or sympathetic to any political party or politician, they’re not funded by any defense company (neither is this website), and they would not personally benefit in any way if F-22 production was resumed and F-22 exports to Australia were authorized. Thus, your first claim is a blatant lie.

    2) The USAF has no agenda either, and it has already stated publicly on many occassions that it does not want more F-22s, most recently through its Chief of Staff. Thus, your second claim is also a blatant lie.

    3) No, my costs are not outdated. $137 mn – $150 mn is the flyaway cost for 2012, not 2005 or 2006 (back then, it was even lower than that), and the total program unit cost (including R&D costs) is only $377 mn per plane, not $412 mn or $421. Even the most liberal anti-defense hacks in the US don’t claim such numbers; POGO (falsely) claims “only” $377 mn – $400 mn, and even that figure is close. The Typhoon’s real cost today is upwards of 90 mn EUR. Same for the Rafale. Moreover, including R&D costs for mature aircraft (let alone those whose production is already over) is totally dishonest, as these costs have already been fully paid and will never again have to be paid; the price that the taxpayer really pays is the flyaway cost. Your claims of the F-22’s costs are not supported by any sources. You just made this stuff up, as you are yet another Euro with an agenda to bash the F-22 and extol the Typhoon.

    4) The Typhoon’s real unit cost is at minimum 125 mn GBP per plane (for a decisively inferior plane), and likely to rise as the Typhoon is not a mature aircraft yet. Tranches 1-2 have stripped down capabilities that will have to be retrofitted at further taxpayer cost. The Typhoon’s scandalous cost overruns are a matter of public record and were investigated by the UK’s NAO.

    5) I never claimed that the F-22 was designed to defeat the PAKFA and the Chinese J-20. I said that the emergence of these aircraft in the last 2.5 years would justify, IMO, the resumption of F-22 production today. I also said, IIRC, that the F-22 was originally designed to defeat Soviet/Russian fighters (Sukhoi Flankers). Both of these statements are factually true. Don’t put statements in my mouth that I never made.

    You have clearly done zero research on military aircraft or their history. The PAKFA and the J-20 were not designed or built because “Russian and Chinese MICs saw an opportunity for profit and pushed for stealth fighters”. They were designed as a result of a deliberate, well-thought-out decision and decades of hard work to match the US in fighter technology (a process well narrated by the APA on its website). After the decision was made, Russian and Chinese designers first learned the rules of stealth shaping and other principles of stealth aircraft design, then the Russian and Chinese industries (Sukhoi, the CAC, and now the SAC) built (often using globally-available COTS technology), and have by now flown, such fighters. The decisions, however, could not have come from anywhere else but the New Arbat and the August 1st compound.

    6) My figures don’t come from Wikipedia, and the figures on the F-22’s and the Typhoon’s T/W ratio are correct. The Typhoon’s T/W ratio with 50% fuel, 4 AMRAAMs, and 2 Sidewinders is 1.15:1, not the 1.277:1 that you claimed, hence putting the Typhoon at a significant disadvantage vis-a-vis the F-22. The Typhoon has a slightly better wing loading ratio, that much is true – but not enough to compensate for its inferior T/W ratio and lack of TVC capability.

    7) AESA radar can be jammed, but likely not as easily as you claimed (have you ever flown a Typhoon or an F-22? no? though so.). Jamming the F-22’s big, 1500-module APG-77 radar, which is far more powerful than the Typhoon’s AMSAR, is far more difficult than jamming the AMSAR would be. The F-22 does not currently have an IRST, that much is true – but it can be added to the F-22 at very little cost and zero technological difficulty (it was originally intended to be installed, but no budget resources were made available for that; but that problem can be solved easily). With an IRST, the F-22 can detect your beloved Typhoon more easily than the Typhoon could detect the F-22 – especially if the Typhoon uses its jammers or shows its rear end to any F-22 (or both).

    8) I doubt Russia would supply one of its deadliest weapons to NATO countries, since these could be easily used against… Russia.

    9) Today’s BVR technology is far more advanced than that of the 1990s, and the AIM-120D is far more capable and accurate than the AIM-7 Sparrow and the AIM-54 Phoenix (even though the Phoenix had a longer range). As for pilots – don’t make me laugh. German, Austrian, Italian, Spanish, and Saudi pilots are DECISIVELY inferior to USAF pilots (especially the guys flying the F-22). How much combat experience do these European and Saudi pilots have? NONE. How many air to air fights have they partaken in? NONE. How many air battles (not air to ground combat) has the Luftwaffle, the Austrian AF, the Aeronautica Militare, or the Spanish AF partaken in since the end of WW2? NONE. How many combat operations of any kind has the Luftwaffle taken part since the end of WW2? NONE. How many training flight hours do their pilots do per year? Far fewer than USAF pilots, I guess.

    USAF pilots are the best and most experienced in the world, and its F-22s are flown by its best pilots. The elite of the elite. Those guys have far more flight hours under their belts than an average Luftwaffle or AM officer will ever total in his entire lifetime. Compared to them, Continental European and Saudi pilots are as inferior as the Iraqis and Serbs, if not more so.

    Only RAF pilots can claim to be even remotely competitive with USAF pilots, but the RAF has seen little air to air combat since the end of the Falklands War (and even then, most A2A fighting was done by FAA pilots). The RAF currently has a shortage of qualified pilots; as a result of successive governments’ defense cuts, in 2011 the RAF had to bring instructors out of its flight school to serve as combat pilots in Libya. Plus, I strongly doubt there will be another war between the US and Britain, given that Britain is America’s closest ally. But even if one erupts, I won’t be worried about the F-22.

    10) You’re the one who needs to check your facts. The Rafale has suffered SIGNIFICANT cost overruns and now costs over 90 mn EUR per plane, versus 64 mn EUR/plane in 2007. And those are flyaway costs. Your beloved Typhoon’s cost overruns were so scandalous, they were investigated by the UK’s NAO. Other European “weapon” programs have likewise suffered significant cost overruns and delays, the best known example being the A400M, which will not enter service for many years, if ever. Portugal bucked out of it in 2003 and bought the C-130J, and the Germans cut their order from 73 to 60 aircraft. Your Euro “weapon” programs, which are nothing but penis pride projects, have a history of even more cost overruns and delays than the DOD’s weapon programs.

    11) The F-22 can remain at supersonic speeds for quite a lot of time, thanks to its supercruise capability, and TVC is useful in far more situations than you claim. (If it’s so useless, how do you think why the Russians and Chinese are adding TVC engines to their fighters?) The Typhoon is decisively INFERIOR to the F-22 in terms of T/W ratio, and because of the F-22’s much higher T/W ratio (owing to its much more powerful engines), its weight is as irrelevant as the F-15s or J-20s weight would be in combat against an F-16 (hypothetically). The Typhoon’s wing loading advantage over the F-22 is marginal.

    12) The Typhoon does not have superior agility or superior weapons to the F-22. The converse is the truth. The Meteor has not yet entered service, and even when it does, it will still have a significantly SHORTER range than the AIM-120D (160 vs over 180 kms), and the F-22, flying at much higher speeds, can send its missiles even further. In WVR range combat, their primary missile is currently… the American AIM-9 Sidewinger (good choice, Euros!). The IRIS-T has not yet entered service and even when it does, it will be inferior to the AIM-9. The Typhoon’s gun caliber is only slightly larger than the F-22s and is irrelevant, as a lot of hard, piercing shells would be required to seriously damage, let alone bring down, an F-22.

    13) Assuming that the Typhoon can even successfully jam the F-22’s radar, which I strongly doubt it can, it’s irrelevant, as the F-22 can easily outturn its missiles and, if it’s in serious danger, eggress safely out of a fight and return home. Using an IRST would not place the F-22 at a disadvantage, and it emits less heat than the Typhoon despite being larger – ESPECIALLY if the Typhoon uses its own jammers or radar OR is spotted from the rear by a Raptor. Heat detection is a double-edged sword, but of course, in your Euro fantasy world, this works only against the F-22 and never against the Typhoon.

    The F-22 does NOT “rely” on stealthiness (and yes, it HAS achieved a significant RCS reduction). It relies on a combination of many factors (including superior agility, superior engines, superior weapons, superior radar, a small RCS signature, a significant internal weapon payload, etc.) which together make it the best fighter in the world, and even moreso when flown by the best pilots in the world.

    14) The F-22 is not at a disadvantage at either drag or inertia and is aerodynamically superior to the Typhoon. EF-2000’s T/W ratio at standard weapon load is 1.15:1, not 1.25:1 as you claim, and thus puts it at a significant disadvantage vis-a-vis the F-22’s 1.26:1, and even its lower wing loading ratio does not help it.

    15) The F-22 will not end in scrap, and will nicely defeat your beloved Eurofighter if it ever comes to a fight between the two fightertypes.

    Romney will destroy the US economy? ROTFL! Romney will rebuild the US economy (if elected). It is Obama who has destroyed it with his statist policies. As history has shown, the only policies that guarantee economic growth are free-market policies of cutting taxes, cutting spending, a strong currency, and deregulation, something that you Euros (and about 50% of Americans) have yet to learn. Thus, we see that not only do you know nothing whatsoever about military aircraft, you likewise know nothing about economics.

    16) No, what you’re writing here is not the result of any research whatsoever – objective or otherwise. It is your adolescent, childish garbage, a product of your fantasies, and not supported by any evidence. You’re just another childish Euro whose penis pride has been hurt, and you want to extol the virtues of your beloved, failed Eurofighter.

    1. I am Croatian, and if you know how exactly my English is crappy, please explain.

      1) APA is interested in making Australia procure F-22 by any means. And I agree that it is far better fighter than the F-35.

      2) Some elements in USAF were pushing for F-22, and some still do, as does Secretary Panetta.

      3) Bullshit. It was 220 million USD in early 2009. And take a look at this:
      Are you saying that they knew in 2006 how much F-22 will cost in 2012? Good God, DoD must be employing some good seers.

      In 2006, F-22 cost 177,6 million USD flyaway. Due to all the problems, fixes and modifications, costs have only increased. Typhoon’s cost has also increased (from 118,6 million USD in 2006 to 122 million USD in 2008 flyaway; it has remained mostly static to my knowledge, but different versions are problem – Luftwaffe Typhoons cost 102,8 million USD flyaway back then and have remained cheaper than RAF ones).

      4) UK version of Typhoon cost 199 million USD unit procurement and 121,5 million USD unit flyaway in 2011. Very bad, but nowhere close to F-22 or to F-35. And Typhoon is far from being “decisively inferior” to F-22.

      5) Yes, US MoD and USAF will probably use PAK FA and J-20 to push for renewal of F-22 production; and it certainly is far better action than relying on F-35, which is a strike aircraft.

      5a) I have done research on both military aircraft and military history, you only need to check my blog to understand that.
      And you must understand that majority of decisions made, particularly in defense, are simply a compromise of many interests. Defense industry has strong influence, as in United States, so in Russia and China.

      6) If they don’t come from Wikipedia, from where they come? Little research would have let you understand that Typhoon’s TWR when loaded is 1,14. At 50% fuel, with 2 Sidewinders and 4 AMRAAM, Typhoon’s TWR will be 1,28 and wing loading 277 kg/m2; F22s values are 1,28 and 318,8 kg/m2. TVC also increases drag and destroys lift.

      7) Typhoon does not have AESA radar, but it does have jammers capable of jamming F-22s radar. And F-22 is still very large and hot aircraft; Typhoon is “only” hot. Rafale, meanwhile, has better IR reduction measures than both, with exception of exhaust. F-22 will be detected before it manages to lock on target.

      8) It’s not only about NATO countries. Besides, it is equally unlikely that US will fight against any of Typhoon’s users.

      9) BVR missiles have advanced, yes, but so have aircraft and so have countermeasures. And how many combat operations F-22 pilots have? Most of them none. European pilots still have – especially those from West Europe – training that is comparable to US pilots. And US “combat operations” were against enemies that were inferior numerically, technologically, had inferior logistics and were badly organized.

      9a) Luftwaffe pilots inferior to Serbs? Tell that to F-22 pilots that got “shot down” in mock dogfights with Typhoons.

      10) Dassault Rafale costs 90,5 million USD flyaway, which didn’t change since 2008. No idea about unit procurement costs. And given that you are defending USAF, you should be last person talking about cost overruns – from aircraft that was supposed to cost 60 million USD flyaway (and yes, that was cost estimate in 1988 – obviously warped, but still) it arrived at 250 million USD.

      11) F-22 is not only supercruise-capable aircraft, although it is fastest; Eurofighter Typhoon can supercruise at Mach 1,21 with AtA loadout of 6 missiles (4 BVR, 2 WVR) + centerline drop tank and Mach 1,5 clean. F-22 can achieve Mach 1,5 with VLO AtA loadout (6 BVR + 2 WVR missiles) and Mach 1,7 clean. TVC is useful for increasing supersonic maneuverability, but in area between 150 kts and Mach 1 it only adds drag. Typhoon also has comparable TW ratio to F-22 in some configurations; in others, either aircraft could gain advantage, but it won’t be large. Typhoon also has lower wing loading, and is smaller and lighter, resulting in less drag and less inertia.

      12) Typhoon has superior wing loading and drag while turning, as well as less ineria, and comparable thrust loading. And while what you say about BVR missiles is for most part ture, Meteor is a ramjet missile, resulting in better acceleration and top speed. As for gun, Mauser BK27 is (surprise!) 27 mm in caliber, which results in shell that is two and half times as large (in volume) as F-22s shell; that means more damage per shell – which is important due to strong construction of modern fighters – and smaller loss of kinetic energy due to air resistance.

      13) Both Typhoon and F-22 can outturn enemy missiles, as both fighters have relatively tight turn radius; however, here is Typhoon also superior due to its smaller size, weight and lower wing loading. And yes, using IRST would put F-22 at disadvantage – first because it has no comparable sensory system, and second because, despite some IR signature reduction measures, it is still large and hot aircraft. Typhoon’s IRST can detect aircraft from over 70 kilometers just by air friction. And heat detection won’t work in this case because F-22 doesn’t have IRST, nor there are any plans to equip it with one. Even if it is equipped with IRST, it will only level the playing field, not stack it in F-22s favor.

      13b) Yes, F22 does rely on stealth, it has to. It is so expensive and difficult to both produce and maintain that having large fleets of F-22s is nothing but a dream. Even one on one, Typhoon has it at disadvantage in dogfight; what you think will happen when eight Typhoons go against four F-22s? Or, more likely due to F-22s huge maintenance downtime (45 hours of maintenance per hour of flight compared to <15 hours of maintenance per hour of flight for Typhoon), 24 Typhoons go against 4 F-22s?

      14) F-22 uses thrust vectoring, which automatically means increased drag, and does not necessarily mean increased turn rate. And as F-22 is far larger, it drags more when in turn, TVC or no TVC.

      14b) My calculations are for aircraft with 50% fuel and standard weapons load, you are using calculations for 50% fuel and standard weapons load for F-22 as opposed to full fuel and standard weapons load for Typhoon.

      15) F-22 will get swarmed and killed without killing single Typhoon (or with killing single Typhoon, if it's lucky) in process. Or, more likely, it will simply be bombed on ground.

      15b) No, it is huge defense spending, deregulation, giving tax exemptions to corporations and general unaccountability on side of both Government and corporations that are destroying US economy – if you take a look at public debt, it exploded just when Reagan came into office. And free market cannot work without regulation, as uncontrolled free market leads to concentration of wealth in few hands. And since economy is all about circulation of wealth, not its accumulation, it harms economy too.

      1. There’s so much garbage here, that it’s hard to know where to begin…

      2. Let’s start from the end.

        1) The APA cannot “want” Australia to acquire the F-22 by any means, because the F-22 production line has been shut down and the ban on F-22 exports was never abolished. When the line was open, they did want Australia to buy the F-22 (and openly stated that repeatedly on their website). Guess why? Because the F-22 is unquestionably the best fighter in the world today, better than your beloved Typhoon, the PAKFA, the J-20, the Su-27/30/33/35, and the Gripen. The F-22’s superiority has been proven, again and again, in their holistic, impartial, unbiased, peer-reviewed analysis, which has been widely acclaimed and frequently quoted (and their website gets 200,000 hits daily and has an information download rate approaching half a terabyte per month), and has been found by their peers to be highly accurate, while Western bureaucrats, obviously displeased with its results, have tried their best to ignore or dismiss it. The APA’s view that the F-22 is the best choice for Australia is the result, and not the cause, of their analysis and its results. Their analysis – unlike your ramblings – is credible. And they don’t receive funding from any defense contractors (nor would they accept any, per their own policy).

        2) There are no “elements” in the USAF that want to, or are pushing the DOD to, buy more F-22s, and neither is Secretary Panetta. It is arrogant and ridiculous for you to claim that you’re inside their heads (or have insider information as a Croatian, when you don’t even live in the US) and know better what they want than they do. Your claims are just that – claims. They are nothing but your fantasies.

        Even if Panetta wanted to buy more F-22s, the Congress would never agree to that. Even if it did, there’s one problem: the F-22 production line has been closed. There will be no more orders for the F-22. Fact.

        Prior to 2009, there were many in the USAF, including many generals and civilian officials, who wanted the DOD to buy more Raptors. It is precisely for that reason that they were all purged from the DOD by Secretary Gates, who did not tolerate any dissent or independent thinking.

        3) The F-22’s flyaway cost TODAY is $150 mn according to DOD data (NOT according to data from some loony amateur sites). Adding all R&D, upgrade, and problem-fixing costs increases this to $377 mn per copy. Not stellar, but far less than the $421 mn per copy you claimed.

        4) Oh yes, the Typhoon is decisively inferior to the F-22, and its actual unit cost is 125 mn GBP today (as opposed to 2011). The UK’s own National Audit Office has comprehensively documented the Typhoon’s scandalous cost overruns.

        5) Wrong. The USAF have not used, and do not intend to use, the PAKFA nor the J-20 to push for resuming F-22 production. This was repeated yet again by the USAF’s Chief of Staff. Your claim that you know better than the DOD and the USAF what they intend to do is ridiculous and arrogant, especially since you don’t even live in the US. And the US has a DOD, not a MOD.

        5a) You have clearly not done any research on anything. You’re just a boy with a big mouth who is spamming other people’s blogs with his ignorant garbage. The decision to develop the PAKFA and the J-20 was made at the highest echelons of the Russian MOD and the Chinese CMC, and was not initiated to enrich Sukhoi or the CAC. It was made as a deliberate decision to pursue a carefully planned and well-thought-out industrial and military strategy to match the US militarily. Your claims to the contrary will not change that fact.

        6) The USAF. The Typhoon’s T/W ratio at 50% fuel load and its standard weapons load is 1.15:1, and will never be higher (absent empty weapon stations). Period.

        7) Whether the Typhoon can jam the F-22’s radar successfully remains to be seen. I strongly doubt that it can, however. The F-22’s IR signature is not larger than the Typhoon’s, because the F-22 has numerous IR signature reduction measures including, but not limited to, slit, stealthy engine exhaust nozzles, and as you admitted, it doesn’t have an IRST that coud emit heat, while the Typhoon has classic nozzles that emit far more heat, jammers that emit still more heat, and an IRST that also emits heat. And if you try to JAM the F-22’s 1500-module radar, your jammers will generate so much heat that you’ll be detected fairly easily even without the IRST. Jammers are double-edged swords, but in your fantasy world, they work only against the F-22.

        8) You’re extolling the supposed virtues of the Typhoon here, so don’t try to change the subject. NATO countries are highly unlikely to obtain the Novator from Russia.

        9) ROTFL! Who do you think gets to fly F-22s? Rookies? You clearly know nothing about the USAF and its aircraft. F-22s are flown only by the most experienced and best-trained pilots in the USAF. Those guys have seen more combat than the Luftwaffle has seen in its entire miserable time of existence. Almost all of them are experienced ex-F-15 pilots. And no, European (except British) pilots don’t get training that is even nearly as good as the training received by USAF pilots. How many hours do German, Spanish, or Italian fighter pilots log every year? Answer: far fewer than their USAF counterparts. Your claim that their training is as good as the USAF’s is just another fantasy of yours, which only proves how ignorant you are.

        9a) The Typhoon has never shot anything, let alone an F-22, except in rigged “mock combat” exercises whose assumptions were that F-22 pilots and operational planners would cooperate in getting themselves killed. And yes, the Luftwaffle’s pilots are as crappy as the Serbs. They have zero real world combat experience, and have had none since 1945. The only time the Luftwaffle actually saw combat, it got its ass kicked nicely by the Brits in 1940, the Western Allies in 1944-45, and the Soviets on the Eastern Front. Today’s Luftwaffle pilots not only totally lack any combat experience, they receive inferior training and fly significantly fewer flight hours than USAF pilots.

        10) The F-22’s flyaway cost today is $150 mn, not $250 mn, per copy. The Rafale’s flyaway cost today is 90.5 mn EUR per copy and has SIGNIFICANTLY increased since 2007, when it was only 64 mn EUR per plane.

        11) The Raptor can actually supercruise at Mach 1.8 when clean. The F-22 has a significantly higher T/W ratio than the Typhoon at 50% fuel and a standard weapons load, and its size and weight are irrelevant, given the superior T/W ratio generated by the F-22’s much more powerful engines. Looking only at weight is like looking at only one part of the picture. It’s ridiculous.

        12) The Meteor is not a ramjet missile. It will be one – if it’s ever delivered. Even if it is, its nominal range will still be only 160 kms, far less than the AIM-120D’s, which can be increased even further (by up to 40%) due to the F-22 flying at much higher speeds than the Typhoon. Try using jammers and you’ll instantly give away your position, especially if the F-22 is equipped with an IRST. The F-22’s gun’s shells are more than sufficient to kill the Typhoon if it comes to a gunfight.

        13) “Using an IRST would put an F-22 at a disadvantage, but doing the same would not put the Typhoon at a disadvantage”. Nice logic. Or rather, a lack thereof. The Typhoon has a LARGER thermal signature than the F-22 due to its conventional design and classic engine exhaust nozzles, despite the F-22 being slightly larger. Thus, the Typhoon is easier to detect for IRST systems. An IRST can be added to the F-22 easily at very little cost. It hasn’t been added yet – but then again, the Meteor and the IRIS-T are likewise only possible future additions, and not current equipment, of the EF-2000.

        13b) The F-22 doesn’t rely solely, or even primarily, on stealthiness, as it has a smaller thermal sig, far better agility, the same weapons, a far better radar, and a far higher maximum speed than the EF-2000. It is not excessively expensive to procure or maintain – it costs only $150 mn per copy in flyaway costs, and it’s far less expensive to maintain than the F-15 Eagle. If it came to a fight between 4 F-22s and 8 Typhoons, the Raptors would win decisively. Of that, I can assure you. A scenario of 24 Typhoons fighting against 4 F-22s is a fantasy… just like the rest of the garbage you’ve posted here.

        14) The F-22 doesn’t have to use thrust vectoring, and despite being larger, has a better turning capability, so your incessant celebration of its larger size is irrelevant. As you Euros will find out yourselves if you try flying the EF-2000 against the J-20 or the PAKFA.

        14b) No, my calculations for both types are for aircraft with a 50% fuel load and their standard weapons load. And the Typhoon’s T/W ratio at that exact load is a mere 1.15:1, significantly lower than the F-22’s 1.28:1. Fact.

        15) No, the F-22 would clean the Typhoon’s clock. That, I can promise.

        15b) Defense spending is not destroying the US economy. The total US military budget amounts to a paltry 4.22% of the US economy, so it’s hardly “destroying” it. Deregulation is not destroying the US economy, and in the last 3.5 years, the US has actually seen an EXPLOSION of new regulations accumulating on top of older ones. Tax exemptions are necessary because of the generally high marginal income tax rates in the US. If these were lowered, there would be no need for exemptions for anyone. General unaccountability on the side of government and on the side of corporations? To whom? You clearly don’t understand how a free market economy works, but that’s not surprising, since you don’t really have a free market economy in Croatia and just a few decades ago your country was a part of a socialist economy. Free markets don’t need regulations to work – regulations only INHIBIT free markets – they work best without government regulations. Free market economic policies are the ONLY ones that lead to significant economic growth, as demonstrated by Ronald Reagan when he set off an economic boon that lasted, with a few brief interruptions, for 25 years and without interruption until 1990. It is no coincidence that the wealthiest, most prosperous countries in the world are those with the freest economies (Hong Kong, Singapore, Australia, etc.), and those with government interventionism and regulations are now suffering a deep economic crisis (that currently includes the US). But that’s a lesson you Euros will, of course, never end.

      3. You should do a little research before posting my Croatian friend. At least I now know why you made that erroneous radar claim. It has problems. To start with, while VHF radar can detect stealth aircraft, we are only talking about generation 1 to do so reliably. Next you run into the problem of needing an array of other radar types to defend the site of whatever weapons platform you are thinking of. Hopefully it’s not another aircraft, because these systems are not compatible, which will quickly give even land based systems weight and size issues, not to mention your lack of stealth, due to the level of juice you are transmitting. Ever hear of a Shrike Missile? There is a definite reason that antiquated WWII radar systems have been removed from the battlefield. Sorry, but this idea is worse than worthless if tried in full scale implementation. It is a massive liability.

        Any comparisons between Typhoons and Raptors is moot from the start. We are talking two entirely different aircraft, intended for two entirely different missions. Not only is the Raptor a fighter, it’s also a mini AWAC, meant to guide an entire wing of UCAVs into battle. And it can lock up a Typhoon quite easily. It can also utilize systems not onboard the aircraft as a further resource. Get this, these systems are automated to prevent pilot sensory overload. How will the Typhoon counter in another two years after lasers with a 25o mile range has been added to the Raptor’s list of weapons? Get real! Guns and missiles are so 20th Century. You can’t use combat simulations where commanders routinely cripple their pilot’s resources to pass judgment on either of these planes.

        And the Raptor does have a fly away price ……. of 100 Mn. I’m sorry, but like the American Press, you have been taken in by the lax accounting practices of the GAO, where guesstimates reign supreme.

        I get so sick and tired of armchair experts lunging forth in attempts to sound intelligent. Any new aircraft has problems. To make matters worse, the Raptor is a revolutionary new aircraft. Are you aware that it’s active radar is powerful enough to burn ALL of the avionics on your precious Typhoons out at distance. Even the German Pilots involved in that Red Flag exercise admitted that the only time they stood a chance was when the exercise was designed to bring the planes into visual range combat. At that point the Typhoon was only approaching parity. In actual practice, these planes would never meet. Besides, warplanes have but a limited future. Space based technology is on the verge of taking over.

  4. You are dead wrong on all counts. Your claims are such gibberish that I won’t even bother to reply to all of them, only to the few most ridiculous ones:

    America’s total military budget for FY2012 was 645 bn USD, including the base defense budget, war spending, and the DOE’s defense-related programs. The US has never had a 1.2 trillion military budget. Not even close. 1.2 trillion is a totally false figure invented by Bruce Fein and other anti-defense leftists who seek deep defense cuts. But they will not get what they want.

    The F-22 has a MUCH better T/W ratio than the Typhoon: 1.26:1 versus barely 1.12:1. So your claim that there is near-parity between the two aircraft in this regard is patently false.

    The F-22 has BETTER IR signature measures than the Typhoon – across the entire airplane, not merely its engine nozzles. And it is possible to detect IR sigs without an IRST. The IR seekers of an air to air missile can do that easily. (BTW, want to know what the primary IR A2A missile of Typhoon users is these days? The AIM-9 Sidewinder.)

    In any case, an IRST can and probably will be added to the F-22 at little cost to taxpayers.

    The Typhoon is the one that is lucky it has never gone head-to-head with an F-22, because it wouldn’t stand a chance. F-22s would easily decimate the Typhoons from a long range and take care of the few remaining Typhoons in air to air combat. The F-22 is highly stealthy, but it isn’t its primary strength. Its primary virtue is its ability to engage and disengage enemies at the pilot’s will and to defeat most opponents (aircraft and IADSes alike) through kinematics alone. This is something it would’ve been able to do even if it weren’t stealthy.

    And yes, European pilots, with the partial exception of the few combat pilots that the too-small RAF still retains, are decisively inferior to American ones. German, Italian, and Spanish fighter pilots have zero combat experience and fly much fewer hours every year than their American counterparts, while the RAF suffers from a shortage of qualified pilots.

    The Raptor’s real flyaway cost is 150 mn, not 250 mn, despite your false claims. Look it up at AirPowerAustralia before spouting your ignorant gibberish here.

    Its unit costs did not begin to significantly climb until AFTER orders were cut in the 1990s as a part of the “end of history/we no longer need weapons” post-Cold-War fantasy. Orders were cut from ca. 660 to ca. 450 under Dick Cheney, to 332 by the Clinton Administration early on, and to 187 by Rumsfeld.

    The USAF does not want to procure more F-22s, and neither does any official of the OSD. Robert Gates purged the DOD of such officials and officers, despite many of them being willing to stake their careers to make the case for more F-22s. RAND expert John Stillion was fired for the same reason.

    Strategically, the F-22 would be a necessary asset without which the USAF could not hope to establish air superiority or conduct tactical strike. It is no coincidence that the F-22’s Global Strike Force is built around the F-22 and the B-2. In any combat situation against anyone but the primitive opponents the USAF encountered during the 1990s and early 2000s, the F-22 would be necessary to establish air superiority, especially since it can defeat J-10, JF-17, Flanker family, and MiG-29 fleets easily, and with an IRST (which will eventually be added to it) would be very effective against the PAKFA.

    1. 1) I NEVER claimed 1,2 trillion USD defense budget. What I did say is that 1,2 trillion USD a year is value for total DEFENSE-RELATED dpending.

      2) F-22’s TWR is 1,26 at 50% fuel, 8 BVR and 2 WVR AAM. Typhoon’s TWR of 1,12 is for 100% fuel, 4 BVR and 2 WVR AAM. Say what you want, but 50% fuel difference is important.

      3) F-22 may have better IR signature reduction measures, but it does not mean it automatically has lower IR signature. It is far larger aircraft:

      And don’t try to tell me that IR missiles – which F-22 carries internally – can rival IRST. I do hope that IRST will get added to F-22 (and not only F-22) but I haven’t found anything indicating that USAF is even thinking about it, let alone doing something.

      4) F-22 would easily decimate Typhoons from range, assuming it has magically-multiplying BVR missiles. It doesnt. And while F-22s higher speed does make it possible for F-22 to disengage (Mach 2,35 estimated vs Mach 2,0), its high maintenance requirements would mean that it is likely to get bombed on the ground.

      5) German pilots in Typhoons have proven to be able to beat USAF pilots in F-22s in dogfight:

      Two Typhoons with 4 F-22 kill markings out of 8 1 vs 1 sorties. And they didn’t get off-bore capability until month after.

      6) When debate has been held about ending F-22 production at 187 aircraft, proposal was to buy seven more F-22s for total price of 1,75 billion USD. Since it R&D expenses have already been paid, and production line was still active, sum shows an actual F-22 flyaway cost of 250 million USD per aircraft. As for Air Power Australia, it is not reliable site, and I don’t assume you have checked date at whatever article you have read it at?

      7) F-22 is far better option than F-35, which itself is likely to end up far more expensive than F-22 was. But new 4,5th generation aircraft – or mix of F-22s and 4,5th generation aircraft – would be far superior choice to F-22+F-35 mix.

      1. 1) Whichever way you try to call it now, the US has NEVER had $1.2 trillion of “defense-related spending” in any single FY. Not even close. (Hint: veterans’ affairs spending and the Department of Homeland Security do not count as “defense-related spending.)

        2) The Typhoon’s T/W ratio is 1.12:1 at 50% fuel plus the goodies, NOT at 100% fuel. At full fuel, it’s even lower. Moreover, when the F-22 carriers 8 BVR and 2 WVR missiles, and the Typhoon carries only 4 BVR plus 2 WVR missiles, that gives the F-22 four freebie shots at the Typhoon, which the Typhoon does not have. Thus, the F-22 wins the deadly missile game.

        3) IR missiles can’t rival the IRST, and I never claimed that they can. But they CAN detect enemy aircraft at the range their seekers are designed to work at.

        And your precious Typhoon’s vaunted IRST gives it no advantage over the F-22. Want to know why? Because, being a SENSOR system, it can only detect and track other aircraft – but not shoot them down. For that, you need weapons. But the Typhoon’s longest-ranged IR-guided missile right now is… the AIM-9 Sidewinder, also used by the F-22 (the USAF, however, has the most advanced variants of this missile, which Germany, Italy, and Spain do not).

        Detecting an opposing aircraft is meaningless if you can’t shoot it down. Yet, the AIM-9X, the newest variant of the Sidewinder, has a range of only 22 miles (35.4 kms). At that range, the F-22 will shoot you down with its own Sidewinders even if you survive the BVR fight, as the F-22’s Sidewinders’ seekers will detect you from 35.4 kms. Thus, in terms of IR-guided weapons, the Typhoon enjoys, at best, parity vis-a-vis the F-22.

        The Luftwaffle, Aeronautica Militare, and the Spanish AF are now replacing the AIM-9 with an inferior missile, the IRIS-T, which has range of only 25 kms, 10 kms less than the AIM-9X, so if you fly an IRIS-T-armed Typhoon against an AIM-9X-armed Raptor, you lose.

        4) The F-22’s maintenance requirements may be high, but they are much lower than for the F-15. The surprise attack on airbases problem can be solved easily (albeit at some cost) by storing F-22s in superhardened hangars and hardening ammunition and fuel storages as well as runways. Which the CSIS has already advised the DOD to do.

        5) German pilots have not beaten anyone in anything. Rigged exercises whose rules assume that F-22 pilots and ground planners would actively cooperate in getting themselves killed don’t count as victories. How many hours do Luftwaffle pilots fly annually? Answer: a lot less than F-22 pilots. How much combat experience do they have? Oh, wait, I know. ZERO.

        The only time the Luftwaffle really fought against anyone (WW2), it got creamed.

        Fighters don’t fight alone, they operate in flights of several (4 in the F-22’s case) aircraft, often with AWACS and tanker support.

        Even on a one-vs-one fight, the F-22 can easily beat the Typhoon, especially when it’s flown by inferior Luftwaffle pilots.

        Come back to me when the Luftwaffle takes part in REAL air to air combat against anyone. Until then, by bragging here about how good Typhoons and Luftwaffle pilots are, you’re just making an ass of yourself.

        (And before you say “the F-22 hasn’t seen air combat yet”: it will, probably very soon, as China prepares for war with Japan and SE Asian countries over natural resources. The F-22 will eat China’s J-10s, Su-27s, Su-30s, and J-11s for breakfast.)

        6) When F-22 production ended in 2011, the flyaway cost stood at $150 mn, as confirmed by AirPowerAustralia. So your $250 mn claim is a lie – a figure taken out of thin air. You have no evidence to back it up – because there is none. (Claims by POGO hacks are not “evidence”.)

        7) The F-35 is already far more expensive than the F-22. The cheapest variant, the F-35A, costs $197 mn in flyaway cost per plane, versus only $150 mn per plane for the F-22. The F-35 was never intended to be nearly as good as the F-22, nor was it ever intended to be a fighter.

        The only aircraft that can ensure US air supremacy for decades to come is the F-22 Raptor, or to be more precise, evolved and enhanced variants of this aircraft (ones that include an IRST, the Link 16 system, and other upgrades).

      2. 2) Typhoon: empty mass 24 250 lbs + 4 950 lb of fuel (50% of total) + 2 x 188 lb Sidewinders + 4 x 335 lb AMRAAM = 30 916 lb. 40 000 lbf (total thrust) / 30 916 lb = 1,29. As for F-22s four “free” shots, 8 BVR missiles is 64% Pk, assuming pilot risks it, and manages to fire off all missiles.

        3) F-22 usually carries missiles internally, and external missiles will increase RCS so it is unlikely it will carry them on combat missions. As for F-22 enjoying “parity” with Typhoon in WVR, it does enjoy it relative to weapons range, but not platform capability.

        4) F-22s maintenance downtime was 45 hours per hour of flight in 2011. As for superhardened hangars, Chinese use underground ones.

        5) Luftwaffe Typhoons have beaten USAF F-22s in WVR. FACT. Exercise consisted of 1vs1 sorties, and was not rigged in any way except for starting at WVR. Which can’t be said for USAF exercises with F-22.

        6) I have given you figure. 7 F-22s for 1,75 billion USD.

        7) F-35 is a bomber, that I agree on. But it is still cheaper than F-22, although not nearly enough to justify cessation of F-22 production in favor of F-35.

      3. Regarding #6, your figures are simply false. The F-22’s unit cost is $150 mn in flyaway costs, not $250 mn, per copy.

        That being the case, the F-35 is already MORE expensive than the F-22 while being significantly less capable. The only wise course now is to cancel the F-35, produce 600 additional F-22As (with upgrades), and produce 680 Naval and STOVL variants of the F-22.

        The only Western fighter capable of taking on and defeating the newest Russian and Chinese fighters is the F-22 Raptor, or to be more precise, evolved and enhanced variants of this aircraft which need to feature an IRST, a HMD, and a Link 16 system. With these upgrades, the F-22 can guarantee continues US air superiority for decades to come.

        The F-35 is not a bomber. A bomber is a large plane designed to deliver large, heavy bomb payloads over long distances. The F-35 is a short-range strike aircraft designed to bomb opposing tank armies once enemy fighters and air defense systems have been eliminated (in other words, once the airspace has been sanitized by the F-22). It can never be a substitute for the F-22 or even the F-15. It can never perform the fighter or CAS role.

        As for missile payloads (#2): the F-22 can carry EIGHT air-to-air missiles internally: 6 AMRAAMs and 2 Sidewinders. The Typhoon can carry none internally and must carry all of them externally, thus adding significantly to its already large RCS. If the Typhoon carries only 4-6 A2A missiles, that gives the Raptor, with 8 A2A missiles carried internally, 2-4 freebie shots at the Typhoon. If an opponent can carry twice more weapons than you can, that makes his aircraft far better than yours and reduces your chance of survival dramatically, because if one of his missiles doesn’t hit you, 2-4 will. For the same reason, adversary aircraft (which normally carry 10-12 A2A missiles) have an advantage over the F-35, which can carry only 4 A2A missiles internally.

        A single AMRAAM has a 0.59 Pk, so 8×59% is 4.72. That means that, with 8 A2A missiles, an F-22 is virtually certain to kill 4 enemy aircraft and has a 72% chance of killing a fifth one.

      4. 1) Any fighter with good EW suite and IRST can successfully engage newest Russian and Chinese fighters.

        2) What you are describing is a strategic bomber. There are also tactical bombers.

        3) F-22 can carry eight missiles internally, and these can be either 2 Sidewinders + 6 AMRAAM or 8 AMRAAM.

        4) AMRAAM Pk you are quoting is only correct against enemies who don’t have ECM suite and aren’t bothering to evade missiles. Against fully-equipped 4th / 4,5th generation fighter, AMRAAM Pk is 8%, resulting in best-case total Pk of 64%; thus, 12 F-22s can only kill 7 – 8 enemies at BVR.

  5. 1) Wrong. A good EW suite and an IRST are no substitute for radar signature reduction, altitute, and speed. A slow, low-flying plane, even with these goodies, would be easily shot down by the newest Russian or Chinese fighters, or even those of the 4th generation.

    As an example, the Super Bug, with its pathetic low service ceiling of 55,000 feet, its pathetic low speed of Mach 1.8, and its large (despite reduction efforts) radar signature would be easily detected and shot down from a long distance by any Russian or Chinese fighter. An EW suite or an IRST would not help at all; jammers can reduce the range from which the enemy can detect you, but not completely prevent him from doing so. And jamming the radars of large fighters like Flankers would require big, powerful jammers that the F-16 and the Super Bug cannot carry due to size and power constraints.

    The ideal fighter would excel in both BVR and WVR combat, but to engage in WVR combat, it must first survive the BVR engagement. Legacy aircraft such as the teen series fighters stand no chance of surviving it. Even the F-15 cannot, because 1) its RCS is too big; and 2) most F-15s still have obsolete non-AESA radars installed.

    The Typhoon would fare better, but it’s highly unlikely that its radar signature reduction efforts and its jammers can prevent it from being detected by enemy aircraft before it comes close enough to launch its IR guided missiles (with the retirement of AIM-9 Sidewinders from German, Italian, and Spanish service, their only iR missiles are now IRIS-Ts, whose range is a paltry 25 kms). The Russians and the Chinese have long-ranged Adder and Alamo missiles whose different variants use different (radar-guided, IR-guided, and passive anti-radar homing) seekers.

    2) There is no such thing as a “tactical bomber”. The proper term is “tactical strike aircraft”. “Tactical bomber” is a misnomer used by ignoramuses who can’t distinguish a bomber from a tactical strike jet.

    3) Yes. Eight missiles internally, 8 AMRAAMs or 6 AMRAAMs and 2 Sidewinders. That gives the Raptor four freebie shots at a Typhoon.

    4) Your claim of the AMRAAM’s Pk against Generation #4.5 fighters is purely hypothetical and unproven, and likely to be too low. Even then, the F-22 has Sidewinders besides AMRAAMs, and Sidewinders are IR-guided. They outrange the IRIS-T by 10.4 kilometers. When your missiles have a range of only 25 kilometers, the best you can do is to watch the IRST warn you about an incoming fighter about which nothing can all can be done until you’re within 25 kms of it. But the F-22 will shoot you down before you make it that close, as its IR-guided missiles outrange yours by over 10 kilometers.

    1. 1) Limited radar signature reduction + performance + EW suite is far better than relying on radar VLO which can be countered by different types of radar or by not using radar at all, and is expensive.

      2) Tactical bomber is a description of role.

      3) F-22 has to radiate to get such shots, or to rely on not-very-reliable uplink. In former case, Typhoon can use EW suite to cue IR missile.

      4) F-22 may shoot down a single Typhoon (6 BVR missiles * 0,08 + 2 WVR missiles * 0,23 = 0,94), but even 1-1 exchange ratio is acceptable for any air force using 4,5th generation fighters… not so for one using stealth fighters.

  6. “Moreover, it may be possible that the F-22′s performance envelope – how high and how fast it can fly – is beyond the limits of what human organisms can tolerate.”
    This is what I’ve been suspecting! In the late 80s there was a wonderful PBS documentary called “Top Gun and beyond.” It discussed the various problems with ever increasing performance and information a pilot had to absorb; this was referred to as “the biology barrier.” In regards to information saturation, the computer revolution took care of that. Still, what remains are problems associated with g stress and hypoxia. I do not know why the USAF & USN insist on using the traditional g-suit when better technology from the Swedes has created the “libelle” (Dragonfly) g-suit. it is a water-based pressure suit that increases g tolerance to well over 10gs.

    1. Yes, you’re right, Giuseppe, and thanks for the info on the Swedish flight suit!

  7. Wrong, Libelle is German for dragonfly (I must know it – I am german). And it was developed by Autoflug GmbH in Austria, designed to equip german and austrian Typhoon pilots.

    As on the part of Zbigniewmazurak, I must unfortumately inform you, that you are wrong on behalf of most of your estimations regarding the electronical capabilities of the european jet.

    internatinal AIR POWER REVIEW” – year 2006, issue 20, page 45. – ISNB: 1-880588-91-9 (casebound) or ISBN: 1473-9917

    The most important factor in such a scenario are notably the RWR´s and the jammers. As stated above, the Typhoon indeed fields all necessary subsystems to successfully fight an oponent like the Raptor.

    Aside from that, the Captor M does also meet higher performance targets than most people give it credit for:

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