Air Platforms

MITRE study recommends US Air Force procure armed F/T-X aircraft

06 September 2019

Key Points

  • A study commissioned by Congress recommends the US Air Force acquire an armed variant of the T-X trainer aircraft
  • This would better utilise fourth- and fifth-generation aircraft for missions in the Pacific where airspace is more threatening

The US Air Force (USAF) should procure an armed fighter variant of the Boeing T-X trainer aircraft to serve homeland defence missions and free up fourth- and fifth-generation fighters to fight in more threatening environments, according to a federally funded research and development centre (FFRDC) study.

David Gerber, MITRE Corp senior principal systems engineer, said on 5 September that an armed F/T-X, if adapted to carry armament, onboard sensors, and air refuelling capabilities, could adequately defend the United States while being cheaper to operate than fourth- or fifth-generation fighters.

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