Random 5: Paris Air Show Day 2

Photo by Stephen Trimble

Five random items from my notebook on a gloriously beautiful day at the Paris Air Show.

1. Boeing confirms the General Electric GEnx engine, among other GE and P&W products, is in the mix for both the its 767- and 777-based options for KC-X. The GEnx currently powers the 787 and 747-8.

2. Boeing has withheld go-ahead funding for the F-15 Silent Eagle, according to Tom Bell, VP for business development. First flight and the flight test phase remain unfunded pending a review of the business case for the F-15SE over the next four months, Bell says.

3. The P-3 has a g-limit of 3.6. Its replacement, the P-8A, has a g-limit of 2.1.

4. Raytheon has a new radar: It’s called the APG-82. This is actually a very clever marketing maneuver. Raytheon is supplying the AESA for the F-15E. It’s a repackaged front-end from an APG-79 and a back-end derived from the APG-63(V)3. But the US Air Force-supplied designation means Raytheon can boast a “newer” radar than the Northrop Grumman APG-81 flying on the Lockheed Martin F-35.

5. The core of the F136 alternate engine for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is sized to grow from 43,000lb-thrust at first flight to 45,000lb-thrust. This is compared to the Pratt & Whitney F135, which recently demonstrated 41,000lb-thrust and is scheduled to grow to 43,000lb-thrust next year.

, , , , , , , , ,

5 Responses to Random 5: Paris Air Show Day 2

  1. Dave 16 June, 2009 at 5:50 pm #

    That’s kind of clever way of marketing their radar for Raytheon…

    About the F-135, I could be wrong here, but my understanding was that the 41000 lbs demonstrated on the hover-pit is in STOVL mode. If I recall right- i’s been a while, the F-135 also produces 43000 lbs uninstalled , but it drops to ~41000lbs once it’s installed. I’ll bet the same thing happens with F-136 since its using the same inlet etc- might be an attempt by GE to save their engine with a lie of omission.

  2. bobbymike 16 June, 2009 at 7:21 pm #

    They should refit F-22′s with two 45,000lbs engines

  3. Prometheus 16 June, 2009 at 8:12 pm #


    why use any money on that cold war relic?

    The JSF ans UAVs are all the USAF needs!

  4. Erin Dick 16 June, 2009 at 10:26 pm #

    Dave, you are exactly right. In an effort to sway Congressional leaders who are considering funding for an alternate engine for the JSF, the F136 GE/RR team is claiming that its engine has been configured to enter service with a “major power advantage” over the F135.

    While it’s an impressive piece of public relations, it isn’t true.

    GE/RR says its engine will be capable of providing 43,000 lbs of thrust when it enters service and could be upgraded 10 years from now to provide 45,000 lbs. The F135 meets or exceeds the thrust requirement of the customer for all applications and has actually DEMONSTRATED the requirements on real flight worthy and production hardware. The F135 is capable of and will provide additional margin or growth capability as the customer requirements are defined.

    In addition, the assumption that they are going to provide additional thrust would violate one of the bedrock ground rules for the Joint Strike Fighter. The design specifications for the propulsion system require that the engines must have equal performance. The two engines must be completely interchangeable and transparent to the pilot. Differences between the engines would create the need to have significant differences in the support and training and drive additional costs associated with an alternate engine that has no military requirement or additional thrust that has no military requirement. In addition, no additional thrust could be realized without a modified nozzle, yet again, additional costs that have no military requirement.

    Of course, Pratt & Whitney is perfectly capable of providing this level of performance for its customer and is more than willing to do so. But it is important to remember that you cannot improve the performance of one engine without improving the performance of the other engine as well, which means taxpayers will pay twice for the same upgrade.

  5. Otto Pernotto 17 June, 2009 at 12:57 am #

    We want the Air Tractor! Give us the Air Tractor!

    I mean, you broke the story, give it to us!

    (hey, where’s the pictures of the pretty girls too, this is THE Paris airshow right?

Leave a Reply