Fifth generation pilots need a new generation of red air that is focused more on sensors and a family of capabilities instead of “linear” comparisons, F-22 and F-35 pilots said recently. Operators of the nation’s best fighters want to see new adversaries that are “extremely agile” in their use of sensors employed against Raptors and Lightning IIs to give those pilots the best possible training, USMC Lt. Col. David Berke, force management branch chief, said on a panel of fifth generation fighter pilots at AWS17. “For far too long we have measured our capability against their capability in linear fashions,” such as the speed or agility of the aircraft, Berke said. That is an “ancient way of thinking that is not relevant anymore,” he said. Adversary platforms need to network together and provide an advanced threat to challenge fifth generation aircraft, he said.
When the Air Force sets a new program baseline for the B-52 re-engining this fall, there will be “some” cost increase, because the project wasn't previously fully funded, and the Air Force has a better handle on actual supplier costs and knowledge from ground testing, program officials said.