F-15A versus F/A-22 Initial Operational Capability
A Case for Transformation
Because of the current security environment, the aircraft’s more than 15 years of development, and the close scrutiny of the F/A-22’s test and evaluation (T&E) program, the US Air Force needs the Raptor’s initial operational capability (IOC) status to be successful. One means of achieving this is to recognize and implement the lessons learned from America’s current air superiority fighter, the F-15 Eagle. And just perhaps the overall effect might be to challenge the US Air Force’s approach to major weapons-system development. This paper provides background information on both aircraft, their T&E processes, and their first operational assignments to Langley AFB. Comparisons are made, differences highlighted, and recommendations offered. While it may appear that everything about the F/A-22 is new, the path to its IOC is well worn. In addition, the author identifies specific recommendations that could improve the IOC of new weapons systems.
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