The Ministry of Defence has awarded a contract worth approximately £250m to progress the design and development of Tempest, the UK’s Future Combat Air System (FCAS).

The contract, signed by BAE Systems, officially marks the start of the programme’s concept and assessment phase.

According to the firm in a news release:

“Continued funding of Tempest underlines the UK Government’s confidence in the progress and maturity of the programme, which is set to deliver the military, industrial and economic requirements of the national combat air strategy. The programme is being delivered by Team Tempest – combining the expertise of the UK MOD, BAE Systems, Leonardo UK, MBDA UK and Rolls-Royce. Working with international partners, the team is leading progress towards a UK-led internationally collaborative Future Combat Air System which will ensure the Royal Air Force and its allies retain world-leading, independent military capability. The concept and assessment phase contract will see the partners develop a range of digital concepts, embedding new tools and techniques to design, evaluate and shape the final design and capability requirements of Tempest.”

Copyright BAE Systems.

Ben Wallace, UK Secretary of State for Defence, said:

“Today marks a momentous step in the next phase of our Future Combat Air System, with a multi-million pound investment that draws on the knowledge and skills of our UK industry experts. Boosting our already world-leading air industry, the contract will sustain thousands of jobs across the UK and will ensure that the UK remains at the top table when it comes to combat air.”

Chris Boardman, Group Managing Director of BAE Systems’ Air Sector, added:

“Working with our industry partners and the Ministry of Defence, we are on track to deliver an ambitious programme for the UK, which will provide a highly advanced and sophisticated air defence capability, capable of countering future threats and safeguarding our national security and defence. The funding announced today marks a critical next step for the programme and, with our partners, we will work together to define the technical and capability requirements and develop the concept which will bring Tempest to life. Tempest offers an exciting opportunity for the next generation of talent to develop rewarding careers, contributing to important work in support of the defence of our nation. The coming years represent one of the most exciting periods in the history of our industry and, as a team, we have a chance to be part of something genuinely historic, transforming the way we develop and deliver.”

Recently however we reported that the Tempest project has been given an “amber/red” rating by the Infrastructure Project Authority, warning more funding is required or their could be a delay in the aircraft entering service.

According to the 2021 Annual Report on the Government Major Projects Portfolio from the Infrastructure and Projects Authority, which can be found here, Tempest is categorised with a level of risk.

Through the Integrated Review of Security, Defence, Development and Foreign Policy the Future Combat Air System received investment for the first 4-years to complete the Concept and Assessment Phase. A phase that will complete an Alternative System Review of the Future Combat Air System including the Core Platform, as well as establishing the international partnerships.

The level of investment was significantly less than required, however it preserves the feasibility of the programme within current parameters, but adds significant overall programme risk, particularly to the assumed date for Initial Operating Capability. The Concept and Assessment Phase will provide the evidence for Programme viability including level of additional investment and/or other options for the provision of Combat Air. Investments and milestones beyond this phase are subject to a margin of error in terms of time, cost and performance that will be refined prior to the next decision gate.”

What does ‘Amber/Red’ mean?

The IPA describe this rating in the following way:

“Successful delivery of the project is in doubt, with major risks or issues apparent in a number of key areas. Urgent action is needed to address these problems and/or assess whether resolution is feasible.”

What is Tempest?

Tempest is the RAF’s next generation combat aircraft, coming into service from 2035 to replace the Typhoon.

CG Image via BAE.

The report goes a bit more in-depth than I just have.:

“Future Combat Air will play a vital role in the United Kingdom’s military strategic capabilities for decades to come, enabling us to defend the United Kingdom, our allies, and make a decisive contribution to global security. The Future Combat Air Systems Programme will design and deliver innovative systems of highly networked crewed and uncrewed air vehicles, sensors and effectors to be able to operate in a range of complex and evolving threat environments and preserve operational advantage for future decades.”

You can read more about plans for Tempest by clicking here.

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Geoffrey Roach
Geoffrey Roach
1 month ago

What a difference a week makes!

David Steeper
David Steeper
1 month ago
Reply to  Geoffrey Roach

 😂  😂 =

maurice10
maurice10
1 month ago

Encouraging news and considering this project has possibly reduced the number of F35’s being procured, it better go-ahead for the RAF’s sake! Such projects give me constant unease as they are susceptible to so many factors, and interfering politicians being the biggest! I wish the development team well, they will need it.

maurice10
maurice10
1 month ago
Reply to  maurice10

Is anyone watching the ‘Starship’ launch site on U-Tube, Musk is doing in months what it takes NASA years to achieve. The rate of rocket development and launches is breathtaking. Maybe, the Tempest programme needs to look at how today’s new space giants are delivering such advances in a relatively short time. Branson, Musk and the Amazon chap, all going in one direction and that is up. Typical aircraft development time and testing needs an overall, and I suggest they look no further than the above gentlemen?

expat
expat
1 month ago
Reply to  maurice10

Actually we’ve had the best industry in the UK for rapid design and deployment for years, Formula 1. Its lead this approach for decades, if you’re not turning design into prototype to deployed to the car in weeks through a season your soon left behind. Even the USAF has said they will use F1 concepts in their next fighter program.

Last edited 1 month ago by expat
Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky
1 month ago
Reply to  expat

Exactly and this is the form of promoting global Britain we should be buying into over a yacht (unless the two are intimately linked somehow) it’s amazing what F1 companies are doing, McLaren and Williams technology at the forefront of Formula E not that anyone would know it the latter work integral too in the practical deployment of laser weaponry. Again Arm, who knows much about them and the likes of Herman Hauser and Chris Curry and others or their team, true technology innovators who have achieved on the World Stage, but people all know that charlatan Alan Sugar a… Read more »

Patrick
Patrick
1 month ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

if only Williams could get at the forefront of F1.

Johan
Johan
1 month ago
Reply to  Patrick

There owner killed his own team, with his poor judgment, over drivers and chasing UNICORNS.

maurice10
maurice10
1 month ago
Reply to  expat

Good example expat, the faster they develop Tempest (hopefully) the sooner a prototype can start flying. To be able to display the prototype could win new customers, this practice has been used before. I just feel that designing brand new fast jets is directed by a huge dusty old book of good practises, which does not mean it’s wrong, just full of time-wasting dogma and caution? Using modern and leading-edge technology such as 3D printing and prototyping should cut years off R&D. obviously, they will use such means as long as the funding is there to purchase the systems??

Julian
Julian
1 month ago
Reply to  maurice10

I do follow progress at SpaceX’s Boca Chica site on a daily basis and think it is fantastic what is being done there but I do think that expat’s example of F1 is the better one (an industry that I had some involvement with during my career during which time I dealt directly with development teams in McLaren, Williams and Ferrari). Were the UK to adopt SpaceX’s development style there would need to be considerable secrecy with the media kept totally in the dark during the early stages of development because your wish to get a prototype flying soon, in… Read more »

maurice10
maurice10
1 month ago
Reply to  Julian

Julian, I watch Boca Chica every morning over breakfast and it gets me out of bed with a spring in my step! Launch tower nearing completion, and launch platform ready to be put in place. Great fun! I chose Musk’s efforts merely to express the spirit of the whole programme. I still don’t believe building a full-size concept Tempest airframe to fly unmanned to get early and vital data in the environment it will work, is an impossible task? Remember, the flyable Euro fighter that lead to Typhoon? As for crashes, I haven’t heard too much about advanced drones crashing… Read more »

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago
Reply to  expat

Quite.

The problem with ‘agile’ development is that it is a defence money pit.

T31 et al are new thinking in terms of bailing costs down.

If you can solve the agile -> cost ballon issue you are onto a winner.

That said I sat in too many meetings where someone had a bright idea. I would observe that there was a zero missing from a parameter to get there and then it would be green light time / money wasted and all in the bin 18 months later.

dan
dan
1 month ago
Reply to  expat

True but F1 cars are no where near as complex as an F-35 or B21 bomber.
Not to mention the amount of code that goes into an aircraft as compared to a car.

Last edited 1 month ago by dan
Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky
1 month ago
Reply to  maurice10

Well that started off well but faded I’m afraid. I follow Space X constantly and it is amazing what Musk is achieving so quickly though he still misses self imposed and promised deadlines quite a lot to the chagrin of NASA and Congress but then the deadlines are almost unbelievably optimistic. It certainly is the future. However the others are far less impressive. Branson has done well tbh but is a decade behind what was promised. As for Bezos and Blue Origin they have become a walking joke in the US. 18 years without even an orbital flight and who’s… Read more »

geoff
geoff
1 month ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

Elon Musk-good South African boy! 😉 

Louis
Louis
1 month ago
Reply to  maurice10

NASA has the same problem the MOD does, they have to answer to tax payers. I don’t think they would be to happy to see Tempest prototypes dropping out of the sky just for the sake of rapid innovation and iterative design.

Furthermore, we don’t require a sixth gen capability this decade. Typhoon and the F-35 will serve us just fine for now. So I don’t think following that approach would be of much use to us.

Jon
Jon
1 month ago
Reply to  Louis

They’d have no problem seeing a couple of prototypes dropping out of the sky if that was what was planned and advertised. So if you think there’s a chance of that, schedule a series of remotely piloted “tests to destruction” to slowly edge up to the limits. Any actual catastrophic failures will be written off by the press because they were expecting it to fail anyway.

Louis
Louis
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

Whilst digital engineering will undoubtedly quicken the design process, the Americans plan for the NGAD fighter to enter service in the 2030’s. Similar to uk regarding Tempest. For context, flight testing of the X-35 began in 2001 , the f-35 didn’t enter service until 2015. As is the case, these programmes take years to develop.

To quote Elon Musk, as he is the topic, “ Prototypes are easy, production is hard.”

Tim Hirst
Tim Hirst
1 month ago
Reply to  maurice10

Plus the regular fireworks shows when things crash/blow up.
I’m not sure that we want to go back to the 50’s when it was normal to kill quite a few test pilots during the development of most military aircraft.

maurice10
maurice10
1 month ago
Reply to  Tim Hirst

Come on chaps, falling out of the sky is a bit ‘old hat.’ They don’t need manned prototypes they could easily be unmanned, it’s no longer a taboo. I don’t necessarily go with the argument about timing, as other countries are looking at equivalent aircraft. If the UK can speed up Tempest then this would generate much-needed income plus, a huge military advantage. Waiting for appropriate service windows all sounds a bit predictable and safe. Yes, we might lose a few Tempest prototypes, but as Musk has discovered, it’s always a painful process, but that will not stop him, nor… Read more »

dan
dan
1 month ago
Reply to  maurice10

Bezos’ is no where near SpaceX and even Branson. They’ve been having a ton of problems with their new engine that is supposed to power the new ULA rocket. And Bezos’ hasn’t even reached orbit with a rocket yet.

David Steeper
David Steeper
1 month ago

Well I suppose the slightly ! negative reaction from some to last weeks news may have been slightly overblown ! If this is any indication of the future this is going to feel much longer than 15 years till service entry.  :wpds_envy: 

expat
expat
1 month ago
Reply to  David Steeper

I didn’t see the last weeks news as negative but the cut in the phase still stands. But too much was being read into it imo by people who have limited knowledge of large programs and their execution.

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  expat

Amen. All projects at this stage are red/amber. Would anyone that writes or posts here guarantee success and mark it green? Of course not.

AV
AV
1 month ago
Reply to  Ron5

Spot on!, to other posters please check out all the other projects they’ve assessed, most are categorised as red or amber….and most way below the technological advancements Tempest is striving for. Personally I’d view it as a good sign and a signalled intent on commitment to this project. Let’s face it, 12 months ago even the most in the know commentators viewed the Tempest project as rather pie in the sky. On today’s news this is actually moving forward so should be applauded as such.

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  AV

+100

andy
andy
1 month ago

as good as it is I do hope to the love of god this does not end up a white elephant, the mod love to announce big things only for money to be spent and then the big thing dropped for whatever excuse they can come up with

expat
expat
1 month ago
Reply to  andy

Its usually government changes that drop programs. But the MoD asking for the moon on stick usually means the budget gets blown = bad press = political opportunity.

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
1 month ago

This £250m, does it close the £250m gap highlighted by the Infrastructure Project Authority’s report – previously discussed on another thread – or is it just part of the already, declared and too small, pot. If it is new money, happy days. If it ain’t then we are still at amber / red risk level, which at this stage is just plain stupid. Project Management and engineering experience tells us to spend early, save later, because that way you have a better chance to get a head of the risks before you cut metal… Nevertheless, good news that the Government… Read more »

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Of course it isn’t new money.

And if the current phase cap were to be lifted, it would still be red/amber. Just look at all the other projects in the list.

Nate M
Nate M
1 month ago
Reply to  Ron5

how do u know that? u working for the KGB?

AV
AV
1 month ago
Reply to  Nate M

Sorry Nate but Ron is bang on, will be red/amber well beyond the flying prototype stage…all documented. Not 100% sure what Ron does but working for the KGB is unlikely lol…(sorry Ron)

Nate M
Nate M
1 month ago
Reply to  AV

ya i know i was just kidding.

AV
AV
1 month ago
Reply to  Nate M

Although sometimes I do wonder 😉

David Steeper
David Steeper
1 month ago
Reply to  AV

They’re actually called the FSB these days. You know how it is in big organisations with an image problem you can either deal with the cause or just change the name !

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  David Steeper

Mmmm and how do you know that comrade??  😀 

David Steeper
David Steeper
1 month ago
Reply to  Ron5

I have secret sources I could tell you but then I’d have to kill you !  😁 

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  Nate M

Working for the KGB?

That’s new, I’m usually accused of working for Bae because I support their projects. Like Tempest. I think it will be a world beater if the politicians and RAF can be kept in their places  😀 

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
1 month ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Politicians and the Treasury hate to spend early (refusing to accept or understand the ‘save later’ part of the mantra) – and are thus diametrically opposed to military and civil servants on the procurement staff.

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
1 month ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

Hi Graham, For the most part I would agree with you, but I was aware of complaints about some officers pushing to ‘get on with it’ during their time on project teams. Largely due to the way in which the preformance reporting and posting systems work. The time in post is usually about two years, far too short for big complex projects. Secondly, the proformance is measured by ‘impact’ i.e. changes made. Whereas on a long term project often the best impact you can have is to maintain a steady course – looks much less impressive on the CV when… Read more »

Terence Patrick Hewett
Terence Patrick Hewett
1 month ago

To re-iterate my comment on the earlier article: “The money will be found: there is no shortage of money, it is innovation and original thought that is in short supply.”

Tempest is the only way forward, so the money will be found. Of course, if one of the “progressive” parties attains any sort of government, then head for the hills because we will be defending ourselves with pea shooters.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky
1 month ago

True. Tempest is vital to sustain the core of our defence industry, but certain parties won’t see that political parties or otherwise.

on another note it’s interesting how some of the latest imagery of the US 6th Gen fighter and of Tempest seem to be becoming more similar in terms of a modified delta design though the US one is becoming almost entirely a wedge shape. Be interesting to see how these develop over time.

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
1 month ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

Hi Spyinthesky, With regards to the similarities between the US and UK proposals. As I am sure you are aware the laws of physicis will push the designs in a similar direction if the requirements are similar, which I assume they are. The wedge shape you describe suggests the US is majoring on stealth, something they have tended to do in recent decades, whereas with UK programme is pushing cost effectiveness, probably with an eye to exports (or lurring Germany and others away from the EU FCAS programme 🙂 ). So flexibility around the mission roles might be more important.… Read more »

Nate M
Nate M
1 month ago

hang on. does the flexible play load mean it will be able to carry big missile? like storm shadow or something similar.

Last edited 1 month ago by Nate M
Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  Nate M

More room for toys I would think  😀 

andy a
andy a
1 month ago

Is it planned to be carrier capable or just on land? Surely we need to bring the germans and french in if we want decent numbers and cost effectiveness?
I assume it will work with the Lanca/Mosquito drone for RN and Airforce?

Last edited 1 month ago by andy a
David Steeper
David Steeper
1 month ago
Reply to  andy a

Land based only.

Andy a
Andy a
1 month ago
Reply to  David Steeper

Sorry was silly question, no good with out cats!

David Steeper
David Steeper
1 month ago
Reply to  Andy a

Hey you apologised if I apologised every time I got something wrong it’s all I would do. 😁  It’s the downside of STOVL there are plenty of uppsides like cost and crewing but such is life.

Andy a
Andy a
1 month ago
Reply to  David Steeper

Let’s face it if we had gone with cats half way through would have been one carrier cos of cost

Whiteblade
Whiteblade
1 month ago
Reply to  Andy a

I mean they’re planning to fit cats but it’s unlikely that tempest will have strong enough landing gear or that cats fitted will be suitable for its weight. The cost still seems to be constantly fluctuating.

Sean
Sean
1 month ago
Reply to  Whiteblade

The planned cats are purely for Project Vixen UAVs.

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
1 month ago
Reply to  Whiteblade

Landing gears are a pain for the engineers – great for the crew 🙂 Changing the undercarriage between variants is a mugs game, it can be done obviously but… The undercarriage is connected to the central fuselage, the central fuselage is connected to wings, the central fuselage is connected to the empennage, the central fuselage is connected to the forward fuselage! In short, a bigger stronger undercarriage can mean knock on changes to pretty much any part of the damn aircraft. Remember, aircraft fly. Which is pretty much a silly thing for humans to do. So we have to work… Read more »

Mac
Mac
1 month ago

Good.

This project needs to build up such momentum, and very quickly, so as to make it near impossible for any new Government of the day, to cancel it.

For the same reasons, I think we all fear that one day, a financially pressed treasury, will try and flog off one of the Aircraft Carriers to someone, before their ’50yr’ service life is up.

John Clark
John Clark
1 month ago
Reply to  Mac

Roll the dice on that one Mac ….. Tempest will stand, or fall, on the progress made under this government term. It’s vital that strong progress is made, costs are kept under control and a demonstrator is flown, sooner than later If insufficient progress is made and costs rise dramatically, then the next government will likely pull the plug and bang in a fixed price, multi year F35A order in its place. You can bet your bottom dollar, Lockheed Martin will sell F35A very hard and will take every opportunity to put the boot into Tempest, if doubt and delay… Read more »

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  John Clark

+100

John N
John N
1 month ago
Reply to  John Clark

Yes doubts and delays certainly kill aircraft programs, eg, TSR-2.

Those doubts and delays certainly were a deciding factor in the Government here in Australia dropping its interest in TSR-2 and instead selecting F-111C as the Canberra replacement.

Talking of the Canberra, it was the last UK designed combat aircraft to be procured by the RAAF too.

Cheers,

David Steeper
David Steeper
1 month ago
Reply to  John N

And one hell of a plane too.

Angus
Angus
1 month ago
Reply to  Mac

Selling off one of them flat tops would not get much back other than scrap value as they can only be operate by big navies. And they cost hardly anymore to run than the old CVS’s (not including the air wing of course) so having them both is OK and give it 5 more years and the QE will be in refit for a couple years leaving the POW to carry on and that will be the cycle for the rest of their service. We should also be looking at putting Tempest to sea too which could save us a… Read more »

Peter S
Peter S
1 month ago

It isn’t easy to understand announcements on funding. All governments have a habit of announcing ‘ new’ funds which have been committed to and publicised earlier. It is worth providing some context for the level of costs. In 1996, LM and Boeing received $750m each to develop 2 prototypes for the JSF competition, one conventional and one STOVL. Four years later LM won the fly off. For the kind of money being paid to BAE, we should expect a flying prototype of both Tempest and accompanying UCAV within 4 years. If BAE can’t deliver that the project won’t survive. Tempest… Read more »

Angus
Angus
1 month ago
Reply to  Peter S

Your spot on BAe are milling the MOD and they need a real kick in the pants and start delivering what we the Armed Forces really need on time and on budget. They get a lot of cash and give little back for it.
.

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  Angus

Like Typhoon and F-35???

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  Peter S

This phase does not include building flying prototypes. Using the F-35 as your yardstick for project management and cost control is a little strange to say the least.

And why is it higher risk than any other new aircraft project? Yes, dipshit leftie politicians may cancel it but nothing new in that. Bae and partners clearly have the expertise to make Tempest work. Just as long as the RAF & MoD doesn’t load it down with unrealistic requirements which is their forte.

Peter S
Peter S
1 month ago
Reply to  Ron5

I used the F35 example precisely because it has been so expensive overall- “the plane that ate the Pentagon”. But the prototype phase was relatively quick and inexpensive. The later problems .(once the weight shedding for the b variant had been completed) that racked up $bs were largely caused by the ambitious software -. from ALIS to sensor fusion. They are continuing to cause problems: the DoDs alternative to ALIS. is struggling, weapon integration proceeds at a snails pace, and support costs in parts and man hours remain high. BAEs promotional video emphasises precisely those software driven aspects that have… Read more »

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  Peter S

I fear you are confusing the F-35 aircraft built for the initial competition with the “prototype phase”. Two very different things.

And if you want less software in Tempest, you are in for a big shock.

John Clark
John Clark
1 month ago
Reply to  Peter S

Absolutely Peter, LM will be in with a tempting counter offer to the MOD by SDSR 2025, regarding a post 2030 Block 5 plus F35A variant, with a new power plant and bells and whistles etc. If they are smart, it will be offered with an increased British content of say 25%, fully compatible with LANCA and the full range of UK weapon systems from day one. They will also say that the new engine and systems can be used as a mid life update for the F35B fleet too. If they can get the UK to agree to be… Read more »

Peter S
Peter S
1 month ago
Reply to  John Clark

Agree completely

Roy
Roy
1 month ago
Reply to  John Clark

It is quite possible (likely?) that Tempest will never enter production. It’s just too big an undertaking for the UK. It sounds good for Government PR types right now, but once the demands for endless additional funds start pouring in, that PR advantage flips and the whole thing becomes a political liability. Does the Govt actually believe its own rhetoric about the threat to the U.K. to fund this project at the levels that will be required? I am not so sure. In that context something like the LM initiative described above would be the way out in a future… Read more »

Robert Blay.
Robert Blay.
1 month ago
Reply to  Roy

I think more international participation is essential for this project to see the light of day.

Daveyb
Daveyb
1 month ago
Reply to  Roy

They said the same thing for Typhoon.

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  Daveyb

Roy and Peter?

DaveyB
DaveyB
1 month ago
Reply to  Ron5

At the end of the Cold War, there was a lot of pressure from various factions to cancel Typhoon. After all we had won the Cold War and caused the break up of the Soviet Union. Why do we need a “next generation” super fighter, when we can make do with what we’ve got? There was a massive push by the German Green Party to cancel Germany’s participation. Certain parts of the UK press (Guardian/Independent) called to the end of the UKs involvement saying it would be better and cheaper to buy F16s direct from the US. The four Nation… Read more »

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  DaveyB

So not Roy and Peter.

DaveyB
DaveyB
30 days ago
Reply to  Ron5

Ha, they could have been.

Ron5
Ron5
29 days ago
Reply to  DaveyB

 😀 

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  Roy

And then the RAF & Bae remind the government of the day how important Typhoon. Hawk & F-35 have been to the UK economy. Huge export successes.

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  John Clark

If Tempest can’t beat out a suped up F-35A then it deserves to fail!

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  Ron5

*souped up

Andy a
Andy a
1 month ago

Hopefully we will follow Russia and merica! In a reduced development, 3D modelling, they have flown first one after a year! Hope we can do aswell

Robert Blay.
Robert Blay.
1 month ago
Reply to  Andy a

That haven’t flown anything after only a year of development.

Nate M
Nate M
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay.

the American’s apparently have flown a prototype of the fxx.

dan
dan
1 month ago
Reply to  Nate M

Rumors say they flew a prototype last year. And who knows what they’ve got flying in their vast, secret “black” world. The budget for that stuff is more than most countries spend on their entire military per year.

Jake
Jake
1 month ago

Is the Tempest to be exported or remain exclusively for British use (similar to F-22)? If the former is true, what potential militaries are we looking to export to, and how successful is the export market expected to be (bearing in mind the US is also developing a sixth generation fighter)?

David Steeper
David Steeper
1 month ago
Reply to  Jake

The GCC countries.

MikeB1947
MikeB1947
1 month ago
Reply to  David Steeper

We’d have to do much better than that, targeting Europe and the Far East, otherwise the next generation US aircraft will once again take the biggest market share.

David Steeper
David Steeper
1 month ago
Reply to  MikeB1947

Sad to say the US alternative will. As for europe the only country with the desire/cash/ambition would be Italy ! But they’d just take HMG’s money and run. As for far east if same rules applies India maybe ? Japan would actually be a good choice but they need the US way too much to not buy american. If anyone can think of others i’d be overjoyed to hear them.

geoff
geoff
1 month ago
Reply to  David Steeper

Sweden?

David Steeper
David Steeper
1 month ago
Reply to  geoff

It’s possible but cash seems the problem. It all depends what the final unit price ends up at and that depends how high end Tempest is. Good point.

geoff
geoff
1 month ago
Reply to  David Steeper

Let’s hope David

Daniel
Daniel
1 month ago
Reply to  MikeB1947

Thats not necessarily true. F-15 was only sold to Isreal, Japan, South Korea initially. F-22 was not exported. There is no guarantee these NGAD aircraft will be exported.

MikeB1947
MikeB1947
1 month ago
Reply to  Daniel

Look at the F-16 and F-18 with far more global sales than the F-15, Typhoon and Rafale.

dan
dan
1 month ago
Reply to  Jake

They will have to make an export version or the cost would be too high for just a couple countries to shoulder given the same numbers they would buy. Will be interesting to see if the countries in the Middle East are allowed to buy it. I know the UAE has been allowed or is in the process of being approved for the F-35A but I’m sure it’s a detuned version or Israel would be creating a big stink about it. As for an American 6th gen fighter to replace the Raptor I doubt anyone besides a few select NATO… Read more »

Daveyb
Daveyb
1 month ago
Reply to  Jake

The US are actually developing two. One to replace the F22 and F15C/D in the air dominance role. The other is for the US Navy, to replace the F18 and regain the air superiority role lost when they retired the F14. Tempest will be up against these two aircraft. I am not going to mention the FCAS as its likely to be a lemming depending on the engine it uses.

Klonkie
Klonkie
1 month ago
Reply to  Daveyb

This is interesting. Can you recommend any links to read up more on these developments?

DaveyB
DaveyB
1 month ago
Reply to  Klonkie

For the US Navy aircraft, look for anything with reference to the F/A-XX. Both the USAF and USN are calling their 6th gen program Next Generation Air Dominance (NGAD).

The link below is a good start:

https://www.popularmechanics.com/military/aviation/a35993309/navy-reveals-plans-for-next-fighter-jet/

Klonkie
Klonkie
1 month ago
Reply to  DaveyB

excellent- many thanks Davey

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  Daveyb

A lemming?? Say what?

DaveyB
DaveyB
26 days ago
Reply to  Ron5

Hmm, seems my answer disappeared, try again. The reason why I’m say it may be a lemming is due to the engines it will/may have. These will likely be a development of the Snecma M88s used in the Rafale. Snecma will probably be paired with MTU, who are part of the Euro-engine group that makes the Typhoon’s EJ200. However, unlike Rolls Royce (RR) neither of them have been involved in variable cycle jet engines. A variable cycle engine can swap between the attributes of a turbofan and turbojet, by varying the bypass ratio. RR teamed with General Electric (GE) to… Read more »

John Hampson
John Hampson
1 month ago

With civil aviation severely damaged by Covid, it is absolutely essential for the British manufacturing base, that the UK govt fully commits to supporting Tempest. In the past EVERY European state and the US has considered the overall benefits to their national economies rather than prioritise cost per unit. In contrast for the last 20 years +, successive UK govt have, unlike EU allies claimed value for money was the decisive factor or the EU Procurement Rules had to be followed. Every major defence contract was awarded  to foreign companies. If the UK govt fails to support Tempest the entire… Read more »

dan
dan
1 month ago

Is this “new” money or just money that was scheduled to be spent?

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  dan

What do you think? It’s the government speaking here and it’s not Christmas.

Robert Blay.
Robert Blay.
1 month ago

Excellent news. And the story the other day was a load of fuss about nothing. 🇬🇧

geoff
geoff
1 month ago

One question that should be answered first-which countries would be in the market for Tempest? You can obviously leave out the Soviet/Chinese sphere and certainly America and its group of captive market states-Israel,Japan etc., and then a huge bloc of countries that could either not afford nor need such an advanced weapons system-Kenya, Algeria Paraguay,Bangla Desh,Portugal-most of the world in fact, so who does that leave? Apart from the UK, Saudi, Italy and Sweden(as partners) India? It’s a fine line. I would love to see Tempest become a reality but a UK order alone probably cannot justify. Patriotism is not… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by geoff
dan
dan
1 month ago
Reply to  geoff

Israel buys U.S. aircraft because the American taxpayer foots the bill for them. Wouldn’t make much sense for them to buy another’s country’s planes with U.S. funds. As for Japan they haven’t bought a U.S. aircraft in many decades and probably won’t again unless their home built stealth fighter fails. They choose the F-15 because it was the best air superiority fighter of the time and the fact that the U.S. dedicates massive amounts of money, men and material to their protection. South Korea buys U.S. aircraft because America has 50k troops, ect there protecting them. Get where I’m going… Read more »

geoff
geoff
1 month ago
Reply to  dan

Morning Dan-see where you are going 😉 but still think Japan would opt for America as a partner over the UK. Israel is so closely tied to the USA that however financed I think that is a partnership that ain’t going anywhere soon, nor is the South Korea connection. India may be a possibility particularly with the China threat looming large in their face but then again they opted for Rafele instead of Typhoon so who knows?
Cheers from Durban

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  dan

Japan is buying F-35’s. They’re American you know.

Whiteblade
Whiteblade
1 month ago

How many Tempest fighters do we think the U.K. needs?

Cripes
Cripes
1 month ago
Reply to  Whiteblade

144

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  Cripes

Surely 145?

DaveyB
DaveyB
1 month ago
Reply to  Whiteblade

Ask for 200, hoping for 150.

GlynH
GlynH
1 month ago

I sincerely hope, it doesn’t end up looking like this. Its unbalanced, looks like a fisher price toy. I’m a firm believer in Geoffrey de Havilland’s view that if it looks right it probably is right. This mock-up doesn’t look right, at all. Nasty, Yuk 🙂

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  GlynH

Thank you Diane Abbott

Watcherzero
Watcherzero
25 days ago

Italians have put some money in for the first time.
An average of just over 20m Euros per year from now upto 2027 then 1.85bn Euros between 2027 and 2035.

Italy hikes 2021 defense spending, finds cash for Tempest (defensenews.com)