Japan is on a fast track to develop a new fifth-generation stealth fighter, according to local media, which on TV show showed the progress achieved by the domestic defense industry.
The new AESA technology radar developed by Mitsubishi Electronics, along with other Japanese companies, was presented in more detail on a TV show of Japanese television,. The new radar is mounted on a Mitsubishi F-2 test aircraft, and according to Japanese media, the Japanese system has features similar to those of the US-based AN / APG-81 which equips the F-35 Lightning II.
The same show featured the new under-developed XF9-1 low-turbofan turbofan engine developed by IHI Corporation. The engine has an after-burner and will equip the new fighter which has been coded as F-3.
The engine has a length of 4.8 meters, and a diameter of 1 meter, it delivers more than 11 tons of thrust without after-burner and more than 15 tons using the after-burner.
The Japanese government began developing the new fighter after the US government refused to sell the F-22 Raptor to Tokyo in 2007 to meet Japanese Air Force’s needs in the field of air superiority.
On the other hand, the decision by the Japanese government to buy a significant number of F-35 Joint Strike Fighter from the US is Tokyo’s interim solution until the introduction of the 5th-generation F-3 fighter in service. The new fighter is estimated to begin replacing the 94 Mitsubishi F-2 after 2030.