Existence of 6th generation fighter jet prototype revealed

Jack Murphy
September 16, 2020 - 9:20 am
F35

Photo by Staff Sgt. Natasha Stannard

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The U.S. Air Force has a highly classified flight demonstrator prototype which has already taken to the skies, it was recently revealed.

Will Roper, head of Air Force acquisitions, made some comments during a recent video conference about the Next Generation Air Dominance (NGAD) project. 

“NGAD right now is designing, assembling, testing in the digital world, exploring things that would have cost time and money to wait for physical world results,” Roper said. “NGAD has come so far that the full-scale flight demonstrator has already flown in the physical world. It’s broken a lot of records in the doing.”

The revelation was first reported by Defense One.

Roper did not comment further on what the aircraft was, but it is widely speculated to be the prototype of the Air Force's sixth generation fighter jet which would one day replace the F22 and F35.

It is also unknown who manufactured the prototype, although Lockheed's website states that they are, " committed to advancing technical capabilities and investigating new venues for developing next generation air dominance (NGAD) air platforms as well as potential enhancements to current platforms that are projected to be a part of the future joint force structure."

Boeing is the only other real possibility as far as manufacturers who build fighter jets for the Air Force.

According to Roper, he revealed the existence of the flight demonstrator to point out that new aircraft cannot simply be tested inside computer simulations. 

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Reach Jack Murphy: jack@connectingvets.com or @JackMurphyRGR.