Originally posted by Dima
just curious, with the coming out of the F/A-22 and the JSF, what will replace the F-14 in the interceptor role, don't say the F/A-22, because it
would be very bad, first of all, it can't even reach Mach2, an interceptor should at least be able to reach Mach 2.75
The F-14 will be replaced by both the F-18 and eventually the F-35.
The F-18 would not have been my choice for an F-14 successor but I am not a decision maker.
Also, the F-22 is not a naval aircraft at all - and ...
I must disagree with your statement that the F-22 cannot reach Mach 2.
While it is true that there is no published official data stating that the F-22 can break M2 it is widely known that the US keeps official maximum
specs on it's aircraft underated.
Proof of this is seen in official statements on the F-15 having a ceiling of only 50,000+
feet... yet it is known that F-15's are capapble of
operating at 70,000+ ft and the Streak Eagle has gone over 100,000 ft (straight up like a rocket, but it did attain that altitude).
Proof is also seen by taking note of most official specs on top speed of current inventory US aircraft, while the layman eventually finds out more
specific stats - the usual statement for US fighter aircraft from the gov't is that their cieling is 50,000 ft PLUS and as far as speed they will
generally say it's a Mach 1 or Mach 2 class aircraft.
The top speed of the F-22 -
The SR-71 which weighs 140,000 lbs (52,250 kg), has 65,000 lbs of thrust and can go in excess of mach 3.2.
Compare that to the F-22 which weighs a mere 60,000 lbs (27,216 kg) and has 70,000 lbs of thrust... The F-22's power to weight ratio is therefore
over twice that of the SR-71.
The only thing that would keep the F-22 from attaining speeds similar
to the SR-71 is the configuration of the engines and the absence of the
adjustable intake spike that forces air into the jet-engine at a speed higher than the airflow around the aircraft itself.
Incidently, the USAF does officially spec the F-22 as a "Mach 2 Class" aircraft.
[edit on 30-11-2004 by intelgurl]