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USAFが5年以内で新型戦闘機開発を計画 (USAF's Five-Year Window To Invent New Fighter Aircraft Industry)

Credit: Lockheed Martin

米国空軍は複数の高度な戦闘機を迅速に生産するために、まず極秘の次世代の航空支配(NGAD)プログラムの重要な変更に着手する。

空軍は3年間にわたり、ロッキードマーティンF-22を2030年までに退役させる方法を分析した。米空軍の 「航空優勢フライトプラン」で「侵入対空」と定義された当初の計画では、現在使用中のF-22を退役させ、アダプティブサイクル推進から高度な武器や新しいセンサーに至るまで、見事な新技術の配列を特徴とする次世代のF-X戦闘機を代替機器の開発を呼びかけていた。

2018年中旬に、2年という長期にわたる代替案の分析がようやく結論に近づいたため、空軍は新しいアプローチに移行することを決定した。この新しい戦略により空軍は、3月に議会に送られた国防総省の5年間の支出計画の中で、2024年度までにNGADプログラムに割り当てられていた132億ドルの予算の約半分を費やした。空軍は、5年以内にF-Xの全面的な開発を開始する代わりに、ロッキードF-35A、ボーイングF-15EXなど多くの戦闘機アップグレードプログラムの納入に引き続き支出する一方で、全く新しい航空機設計プロセスを開発している。

「第5世代戦闘機の最新の生産ラインがあるので、新しいことに挑戦するのに今が良いタイミングだと思います。第4世代戦闘機は数十億ドル規模の大規模な近代化を遂げています」と、買収、技術、物流を担当する米国空軍次官補ウィル・ローパーは述べた。[generation fighters][And][are]

「ですからこの時期に、今後5年の期間に何か新しいことにチャレンジし、数機のXプレーンの生産と、主要な防衛獲得プログラムの1,000機の生産をしている間に航空機を製造する新しい方法を開発できるかを検討するのはとても良いことです」新しいNGAD戦略をリードしているローパーは、アビエーション・ウィークへのインタビューでそう語った。[is]

以上は、Steve Trimble and Lee Hudson​がAviation Week & Space Technologyに書いた記事の簡略版です。NGAG機密プログラムについての詳細は全文記事をお読みください。​全文を英語でご覧いただくには、ログインまたは購読していただく必要があります。

The U.S. Air Force’s vision to rapidly produce multiple fleets of advanced fighters the way Apple makes iPhones begins with an important change in plans for the secretive Next-Generation Air Dominance (NGAD) program.

For three years, the Air Force analyzed how to replace the Lockheed Martin F-22 by 2030. The original plan—defined as the Penetrating Counter-Air capability in the Air Superiority Flight Plan released in 2017—called for developing a conventional replacement for the F-22, with a next-generation F-X fighter featuring a dazzling array of new technologies, ranging from adaptive cycle propulsion to advanced weapons and new sensors.

As an extended, two-year-long analysis of alternatives neared a conclusion in mid-2018, the Air Force decided to shift to a new approach. The new strategy led Air Force leaders to drain about half of the $13.2 billion budget previously allocated to the NGAD program through fiscal 2024 in the Defense Department’s five-year spending plan sent to Congress in March. Instead of launching full development of the F-X within that five-year window, the Air Force is developing a radical new aircraft design process—even as spending continues on deliveries of Lockheed F-35As, Boeing F-15EXs and a host of fighter upgrade programs.

“We’re at a good point to attempt something new because we have hot production lines for fifth [generation fighters]. [And] fourth-gen fighters [are] going through major multibillion dollar modernizations,” says Will Roper, the assistant secretary of the U.S. Air Force for acquisition, technology and logistics.

“So it’s a good time to try something new for a five-year window and see if we can create a new way to build airplanes for us that [is] between the building of one or two X-planes and the building of 1,000 units in a major defense acquisition program,” Roper, who is leading the new NGAD strategy, tells Aviation Week in an interview.

This is an abbreviated version of an article that appeared in Aviation Week & Space Technology by Steve Trimble and Lee Hudson. More details about the classified NGAG program discussed in the full article. Login or subscribe to access the full article in English here.

 


 

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As a subscriber to one of Aviation Week Network’s market briefings, your searches only provide you with access to articles from within that product.

To find out about obtaining additional data – including the most comprehensive details on organizations, fleets, personnel and programs – click here or call +1.561.279.4661.


 

As a subscriber to one of Aviation Week Network’s market briefings, your searches only provide you with access to articles from within that product.

To find out about obtaining additional data – including the most comprehensive details on organizations, fleets, personnel and programs – click here or call +1.561.279.4661.


 

As a subscriber to one of Aviation Week Network’s market briefings, your searches only provide you with access to articles from within that product.

To find out about obtaining additional data – including the most comprehensive details on organizations, fleets, personnel and programs – click here or call +1.561.279.4661.