February 10, 2019 Military Aviation News

Warplanes: B-52 Stays, B-1B Retires


The U.S. Air Force has decided to retire its B-1B bombers, which were built in the 1980s, before the B-52Hs, which were built in the 1960s. It’s all about cost. One of the two older heavy bombers has to go when the new B-21 stealth bomber begins entering service in 2030. If that happens the B-1Bs will start to retire in 2025 and the last will be gone by 2035. The B-52s are to serve until the 2040s.

Airbus and Dassault announce partnership to develop sixth-generation fighter


The governments of Germany and France have granted the first contract to manufacturers Airbus and Dassault to jointly develop the first conceptual studies for the Future Combat Air System (FCAS) program that is expected to originate a Friday fighter aircraft generation by 2040. The announcement was made by the French military minister, Florence Parly, and her German colleague, Ursula von der Leyen, at a meeting in Paris on Wednesday.

What’s Next for China’s Fifth Generation Fighter Jet?


Upon entering service in 2017 the Chengdu J-20 became the first active fifth generation fighter jet in the world developed outside the United States — providing the Chinese People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) with an analogue to the U.S. Air Force’s F-22 Raptor air superiority fighter. The J-20 was designed with a radar evading stealth profile to maximize its survivability both in air-to-air combat against enemy fighters and against enemy air defenses.

USAF to struggle with novice aircraft maintainers for years


The US Air Force continues to struggle to keep and replace sufficient numbers of experienced and highly skilled aircraft maintainers. That’s according to a Government Accountability Office report which said the USAF reduced the overall gap between actual maintainer staff levels and authorised levels from 4,016 maintainers in fiscal year 2015, to 745 in fiscal year 2017.

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