F-22 Raptor stealth fighter aircraft is made by the United States. It was originally envisioned as an air superiority fighter for use against Soviet aircraft, but the aircraft is equipped for ground attack, electronic warfare and signals intelligence. The aircraft is through a long period of development, prototype versions were named YF-22, three years before it was officially adopted F/A-22 named, and eventually was named the F-22A when it officially came into use in December 2005. Lockheed Martin Aeronautics is the prime contractor is responsible for the majority of the airframe, armament, and the assembly of F-22. Then his partner, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems provides the wings, avionics equipment, and pilot and maintenance training.
YF-22, aircraft development is the basis for the manufacture of F-22.
Advanced Tactical Fighter (ATF) is a contract for the demonstration and validation program that made the United States Air Force to develop a new generation air superiority fighter to deal with threats from outside the United States, including the development of the Su-27 aircraft-grade Soviet era.
In 1981, the United States Air Force to map the requirements to be met a planned new aircraft to replace the F-15 Eagle. ATF is planned to integrate modern technology such as advanced metal and composite materials, advanced control systems, high-powered propulsion systems and stealth aircraft technology.
The proposal for the contract was filed in 1986, by two teams of contractors, the Lockheed-Boeing-General Dynamics and Northrop-McDonnell Douglas, who was elected in October 1986 for demonstration and validation phase through the past 50 months, which ultimately produced two prototypes, the YF -22 and YF-23.
The aircraft is planned to be a U.S. aircraft the most advanced at the beginning of the 21st century, therefore, this aircraft is the aircraft most expensive, at U.S. $ 120 million per unit, or U.S. $ 361 million per unit when added to the cost of development.In April 2005, total development cost of this program is U.S. $ 70 billion, causing the number of aircraft planned to be made down to 438, then 381 and now 180, from the initial plan of 750 aircraft. One of the factors causing this reduction is due F-35 Lightning II will have the same technology as the F-22, but with a cheaper unit price.
YF-22 ‘Lightning II’
YF-22 is an aircraft that became the basis for the development of manufacture of the F-22 production version. However, there are some significant differences between the two, which changes the position of the cockpit, structural changes, and many other small changes. Both aircraft are often confused on the photographs, generally at the point of view that is difficult to see certain features. YF-22 Lighting II is given the nickname by Lockheed, this name lasted until the mid-1990s. For some time, these aircraft also had been named SuperStar and Rapier. However, the F-35 then officially received the name of Lighting II on July 7, 2006.
YF-22 ATF contracts after winning the competition beat the YF-23 flew the Northrop-McDonnell Douglas made. On April 2002, at the time of testing, the first YF-22 prototype crashed while landing at Edwards Air Force Base in California. The test pilot, Tom Morgenfeld, was not injured. The cause of this fall is the error in the software.
F-22 production process.
F-22 production versions were first delivered to Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, on January 14, 2003. Testing and final evaluation conducted on October 27, 2004. At the end of 2004, there were 51 Raptor is sent, with another 22 booked in the fiscal 2004 budget. Destruction of the first production version occurred on December 20, 2004 at the time of takeoff, the pilot ejected safely after a few moments before it crashed. This investigation concluded that the fall of power interruptions when turning off the engine before taking off causing damage to the control system.
Change of name
Production version of the plane is named F-22 Raptor when it was first raised on April 9, 1997 at Lockheed-Georgia Co.., Marietta, Georgia.
On September 2002, the United States Air Force officials changed the name of a F/A-22 Raptor. This naming, which is similar to the naming of the Navy F/A-18 Hornet United States, aims to promote the image of the Raptor as well as fighter ground attack aircraft, due to the debate that occurred in the U.S. government about the importance of air superiority fighter is very expensive. The name is then returned back into the F-22 only on December 12, 2005, and then on December 15, 2005 F-22A officially came into use.
Two F-22 Raptor. F-22 on a development version, Raptor 01.
United States Air Force originally planned to order 750 ATF, with production beginning in 1994. In 1990 Major Aircraft Review to change the plan to 648 aircraft beginning in 1996. The end goal changed again in 1994, to 442 aircraft entered service life in the year 2003 or 2004. Report of the Ministry of Defence in 1997 to change the purchase of a 339.
In 2003, the Air Force said that the existing congressional funding restrictions now limiting purchases to 277. In 2006, the Pentagon said it will buy 183 aircraft, which will save $ 15 billion but raise financing per aircraft. This plan has been de facto approved by Congress in the form of the planned purchase of several years, are still opportunities for new orders past that point. Lockheed Martin has said that in FY (Fiscal Year / Fiscal Year) 2009 they already have to know whether more planes will be purchased, for ordering goods long-lead.
On April 2006, the cost of the F-22A by the Government Accountability Office estimated to be $ 361 million per plane. These costs reflect the total cost of the program F-22A total program cost, divided by the number of jets to be purchased by the Air Force. So far, the Air Force has invested as much as $ 28 billion in research, development, and experiments Raptor. That money, referred to as a “sunk cost,” has been spent and is separate from money used for decision making in the future, including the purchase of copies of the jet.
F-22 (above) with its predecessor, the F-15.
When all 183 jets have been purchased, $ 34 billion will be spent to purchase these aircraft actually. This will produce a cost of about $ 339 million per aircraft based on the total cost of the program. The increase in the cost of an additional F-22 is approximately $ 120 million. If the Air Force will buy 100 pieces of additional F-22 today, each aircraft will be worth less than $ 117 million and will continue to fall with additional aircraft purchases.
F-22 is not the most expensive aircraft ever; peculiarities seemed to die on the B-2 Spirit is worth roughly $ 2.2 billion per unit; despite rising costs under 1 billion U.S. Dollar. To be more fair, reservations B-2 went from hundreds to a few dozen when the Cold War ended, so the price per unit soar. F-22 uses fewer radar absorbent materials than the B-2 or F-117 Nighthawk, the hope that maintenance costs will be lower.