Why Are The F 16 And F 15s Aileron Actuators Hidden?

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Why are the F-16 and F-15's Aileron actuators hidden, yet the Stealth F-22s are bulging out?

This question is forgetting one of the best of the 4th gen. F-18(A,C, not E) Hornet The predecessor of F-18, YF-17 did lose to F-16 because F-16 had better sustained turn rate, thanks to its relaxed stability aerodynamics and better thrust-to-weight ratio. But F-18 has been improved quite a lot from YF-17; It got much more powerful F404 engines, and now it has thrust-to-weight ratio in the same class than F-16. Like F-16, it also got fly-by-wire controls, though it’s still based on more stable aerodynamic design than F-16. Even though F-18 still does not beat F-16 on sustained turn rate or F-15 on raw thrust-to-weight ratio, it gets quite close to both, and it has another trick on it’s sleeve. It has excellent low speed handling, very small turning circle and it can fly on insane angles of attacks, pointing it’s nose for a quick kill. Getting to slow speed on dogfight is very risky, but F-18 has the option of doing it, unlike F-15 and F-16 which cannot fly at very high angles of attacks and have much bigger minimum turning circles. F-14 Tomcat, while it was the best dogfighter in 1974, is outclassed by the other planes in dogfight. It has clearly worst thrust-to-weight ratio of all 4th gen fighters (except Panavia Tornado ADV, which was only made to be an interceptor). Tomcats strength is small turning circle, it has to manage to trick the F-15 and F-16 to slow down to speeds below their corner speed to survive against those, but smart F-15 or F-16 pilot will not slow down and will use his better thrust-to-weight ratio to fight on the third dimension. But even tricking the enemy into slow speed fight does not work against F-18 which has even better low-speed agility and smaller turning circle than F-14. Mig-29 is the wild horse here. Theoretically, it has quite high performance, it has a very good thrust-to-weight ratio, quite good sustained turn rate and can fly at quite high alpha angles (though not as well as F-18), but it’s really laborious to fly. The pilot has to work MUCH harder just to keep mig-29 flying the way he wants it to fly, so that he has much less brain capacity to use for fighting, thinking what he should do, what tactics he should use etc. If the pilot is really, really good, mig-29 is also really good in dogfight. Unfortunately, the engines of mig-29 are also somewhat unreliable and need a lot of maintenance so the amount of training that makes very good mig-29 pilots is very expensive. So in practice the mig-29, the plane which requires the best pilot to really shine, is typically flown by the least competent pilot. Plane that would have been the best dogfighter of the 4th gen, but never went to production was the Nortrop F-18L, lighter non-navalized version of F-18. It would have had very high thrust-to-weight ratio, clearly beating F-16, and also quite low wing loading, while still being capable of all the low-speed high-alpha tricks F18 is capable of. Super Hornet, on the other hand, added so much weight for a quite small thrust increase, that its thrust-to-weight ratio is not very good and its not as good dogfighter than the original Hornet. (However, it’s still a better fighter than the original Hornet because it has much better BVR capabilities, and BVR matters much more than dogfighting)

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We are currently working to get a new air superiority fighter built in the United States, and we hope to have that new fighter into the inventory by the end of the decade. After that, however, we will continue to work to maintain our current squadrons, as well as the ones we create through attrition. We will continue to do what comes in-stock quickly. The F-35 is still in-development, and there are ongoing improvements being made to the program. So, it is the future. All those new fighter aircraft are not only coming online but are also coming online as a large aircraft-building challenge. We can expect them to be operational by mid-century. At that point, as the USAF has grown in size, in importance and responsibility, it has to maintain its fleet. We are currently in a transitional time as our aircraft are no longer manufactured at home. Our.

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