The Northrop / McDonnell Douglas YF-23 is American single-seat twin-engine stealth fighter aircraft


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The Northrop/McDonnell Douglas YF-23 is an American single-seat, twin-engine stealth fighter aircraft technology demonstrator designed for the United States Air Force (USAF). The design was a finalist in the USAF’s Advanced Tactical Fighter (ATF) competition, battling the Lockheed YF-22 for a production contract. Two YF-23 prototypes were built, nicknamed “Black Widow II” and “Gray Ghost”.

In the 1980s, the USAF began looking for a replacement for its fighter aircraft, especially to counter the USSR’s advanced Sukhoi Su-27 and Mikoyan MiG-29. Several companies submitted design proposals; the USAF selected proposals from Northrop and Lockheed. Northrop teamed with McDonnell Douglas to develop the YF-23, while Lockheed, Boeing and General Dynamics developed the YF-22.

The YF-23 was stealthier and faster, but less agile than its competitor. After a four-year development and evaluation process, the YF-22 was announced the winner in 1991 and entered production as the Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor. The U.S. Navy considered using the production version of the ATF as the basis for a replacement to the F-14, but these plans were later canceled. The two YF-23 prototypes were museum exhibits as of 2010.

American reconnaissance satellites first spotted the advanced Soviet Su-27 and MiG-29 fighter prototypes in 1978, which caused concern in the U.S. Both Soviet models were expected to reduce the maneuverability advantage of contemporary US fighter aircraft.[1] In 1981, the USAF requested information from several aerospace companies on possible features for an Advanced Tactical Fighter (ATF) to replace the F-15 Eagle. After discussions with aerospace companies, the USAF made air-to-air combat the primary role for the ATF.[2] The ATF was to take advantage of emerging technologies, including composite materials, lightweight alloys, advanced flight-control systems, more powerful propulsion systems, and stealth technology.[3] In October 1985, the USAF issued a request for proposal (RFP) to several aircraft manufacturers. The RFP was modified in May 1986 to include evaluation of prototype air vehicles from the two finalists. At the same time, the U.S. Navy, under the Navalized Advanced Tactical Fighter (NATF) program, announced that it would use a derivative of the ATF winner to replace its F-14 Tomcat. The NATF program called for procurement of 546 aircraft along with the USAF’s planned procurement of 750 aircraft.[4]
In July 1986, proposals were submitted by Lockheed, Boeing, General Dynamics, McDonnell Douglas, Northrop, Grumman and Rockwell. The latter two dropped out of competition shortly thereafter.[5] Following proposal submissions, Lockheed, Boeing, and General Dynamics formed a team to develop whichever of their proposed designs was selected, if any. Northrop and McDonnell Douglas formed a team with a similar agreement.[6] The Lockheed and Northrop proposals were selected as finalists on 31 October 1986. Both teams were given 50 months to build and flight-test their prototypes, and they were successful, producing the Lockheed YF-22 and the Northrop YF-23.[7]

The YF-23 was designed to meet USAF requirements for survivability, supercruise, stealth, and ease of maintenance.[8] Supercruise requirements called for prolonged supersonic flight without the use of afterburners.[9] Northrop drew on its experience with the B-2 Spirit and F/A-18 Hornet to reduce the model’s susceptibility to radar and infrared detection.[10] The USAF initially required the aircraft to land and stop within 2,000 feet (610 m), which meant the use of thrust reversers on their engines. In 1987, the USAF changed the runway length requirement to 3,000 feet (910 m), so thrust reversers were no longer needed. This allowed the aircraft to have smaller engine nacelle housings. The nacelles were not downsized on the prototypes.[11][12]

The first YF-23 (serial number 87-0800), Prototype Air Vehicle 1 (PAV-1), was rolled out on 22 June 1990;[13] PAV-1 took its 50-minute maiden flight on 27 August with Alfred “Paul” Metz at the controls.[14] The second YF-23 (serial number 87-0801, PAV-2) made its first flight on 26 October, piloted by Jim Sandberg.[15] The first YF-23 was painted charcoal gray and was nicknamed “Black Widow II”, after the Northrop P-61 Black Widow of World War II. It briefly had a red hourglass marking resembling the marking on the underside of the black widow spider before Northrop management had it removed.[N 1] The second prototype was painted in two shades of gray and nicknamed “Spider”[15] and “Gray Ghost”.
Fighter aircraft are a vital component of any air force F-35 Lightning and F-22 Raptor demonstrate their vast superiority. Airforce-technology analyses best fighter aircraft in the world, based on aircraft specifications, technology, armament fit and performance.
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  2. Entertainment as per you gave it a paint job at the beginning…& isn't that the same voice at the beginning that feeds my children's minds with 80% facts blended with 20% information to make them look like idiots on the matter? Example: one of the two existing planes were crashed…& never made it into a museum (&/or the hands of China…as the J-20 is a pathetic joke & lie…able to be detected by a Cold War era Russian MIG; a shameful embarrassment disqualifying China from being taken seriously on any military technology matter at this current time in history).

  3. My question.when all the satellites go down and computers fry can that still fly. We would do good to hang on to our oldy goldys .just in case.#VOTE TRUMP2020..AND ALL REPUBLICAN…

  4. The top speed of Pav1is still classified there are people out there that do know the top speed of pav1 I want to have that information declassified I think that pav1 reached Or even maybe surpassed the top speed of the SR 71 I think that PAV 1 Went mock 3+ and smoked

  5. I would to at least see the Japanese did end up with a production variant of the YF-23 seeing they are moving beyond the Mitsubishi X-2 Shinshin, i just would love to see the Japanese flying a full on modern F-23 Black Widow II and really show up the F-22 Raptor. I know the Japanese aren't getting production version of the YF-23 Black Widow II, but i would prefer the Japanese be the ones Flying them than them to never see the light of day if the project was to go ahead, and with Trump willingness to sell off American Classified Weapon Systems, if this project has a higher chance of going forward is while Trump is still in Office so he can Boost he is Selling Billions of Dollars of Invisible Fighters to Japan!

  6. why does this video keep showing that wanna be 5th gen su-57 every now and then? what does it have to do with the title of the video?

  7. Canada should buy this license, but the US won't sell it although they didn't go through with it because they know it is the F22 competitor or superior

  8. Some feedback, great write up but do away with the text to speech already. Just do a voice over yourself regardless if you don’t think your voice will work with it or not, it’s infinitely better than a robotic voice that can’t even pronounce commonly known military lingo.

  9. The Navy should’ve picked the F-22 and named it Lightning II. Thrust vectoring and it’s smaller frame would’ve been perfect for carrier operations.

    The USAF should’ve picked the F-23 and named it Black Widow II. With its longer range and superior stealth, it would’ve been great for bomber escort of the B-2 and future B-21.

    The single engine F-35 JSF should’ve been the one named the Raptor. And stay on course for delivery to the USAF, Marine Corps and Navy, with its respective A, B and C variants.

  10. Lockeed has been loading the wallets of military brass for years. The YF23 was a superior plane in every aspect but 1.

  11. It's sad..because this aircraft. .is more serpeaior to the F-22 …I wonder if there was a foreign buyer for this aircraft ? ?

  12. YF- 23 was more superior than the Raptor in maneuverability, stealth, and more but ultimately boiled down to money 💰💰💰💰 who could offer the best deal.


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