posted on Aug, 29 2016 @ 02:15 AM
Put it this way.
An F-35 has approximately 43,000 lbs of thrust and in combat configuration will weigh approximately 40,000 lbs. That means excluding the force of
gravity pulling the aircraft to earth and drag, the upper limit of F-35 acceleration due to engine power alone is approximately 1 G (9.8 ms^(-2)).
While hovering, if the F-35 wishes to maneuver, then it can't do much, because most that thrust will be going to simply keeping the aircraft in a
hover. (Aside: I doubt the F-35 has enough thrust to hover at high altitude...).
In contrast, most modern fighter aircraft while turning like a conventional aircraft, including the F-35, can pull 9 G instantaneously by bleeding off
airspeed and at least 4 G sustained. Of course, both these figures vary depending on aircraft, altitude, and configuration. An F-16 without external
stores for example can sustain 9 G at low altitude. Speed also allows an aircraft to get from A to B quickly.
Picture this. Aircraft A and Aircraft B are flying directly towards each other at high speed. Aircraft A fires a missile at maximum missile range.
Aircraft B detects the launch, turns 90 degrees at 9 G, then quickly regains high speed. The missile will then not have enough energy to reach
Aircraft B because it now must turn (bleeding energy) and the distance it must fly has also increased.
Or alternatively picture Aircraft A flying at high speed towards Aircraft B. Aircraft B is at low speed and can only change direction at 1 G. The
missiles on Aircraft A can fly further than those on Aircraft B, because Aircraft A is moving. Aircraft B cannot change direction very fast. Aircraft
B is destroyed.
Some other thoughts:
- The lift fan door is probably not designed for high speed.
- Fastest way to decelerate an F-35 would probably be to pull the throttle back and pull as many G as possible, with the speed-brake engaged.
- The F-35 by all accounts has excellent nose-pointing ability.
edit on 29/8/16 by C0bzz because: (no reason given)