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SOUTH KOREA’S KAI TO START WORK ON KF-X PROTOTYPE

The Ronin

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According to a press release by the South Korean Defence Acquisition Programme Administration (DAPA), Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) will begin work on the first prototype of the KF-X, its next-generation jet.

The decision was made following a critical design review (CDR) of the KF-X by DAPA, which was held from 24 to 26 September. As part of the CDR, DAPA reviewed 390 “technical data” parameters “to ensure that the military requirements were properly reflected in the design.”

DAPA states that the KF-X “successfully passed the [CDR].”

The prototype production phase is expected to take until the first half of 2021, with the maiden flight slated for the first half of 2022. KAI expects to complete development by 2026.

DAPA initiated the KF-X program in 2016 as a joint-venture with Indonesia, with the latter assigning PTDI (PT Dirgantara Indonesia) to participate in the project.

Indonesia was to commit 20% of the KF-X’s $7.4 billion program costs, but the latter has been having trouble maintaining its equity. In late 2018, Indonesia started renegotiating its partnership with the South Korean government, and this might result in a smaller commitment.

Following more than two years of development work, KAI revealed the frozen design of the KF-X in June 2018. Officially set as a ‘4.5-generation’ fighter, the KF-X was revealed as a twin-engine design with a low-observable airframe and external hardpoints.

The launch variant of the KF-X lacks an internal payload, but KAI will incorporate one in a ‘Block-2’ variant. The KF-X will use a variant of the General Electric (GE) F414 turbofan engine.

The South Korean Air Force (ROKAF) plans to supplant it aging F-4E Phantom and F-5E Tiger II aircraft with 120 KF-X fighters. It is unclear how many more KF-Xs the ROKAF plans to procure, though it may expand its scope as its oldest F-16s start reaching the end of their airframe lifespans.

https://quwa.org/2019/10/01/south-k...ViQA-6upItIkhwdDc4ChuzOiwaO4KKbxCs8lkFNQ2wCkE
 

Indos

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The article made some big mistakes about when the project was started. It is wrong to say that the project is started in 2016. I will give some facts that will clear the article above to bring more clarity of the program :

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South Korea asked Indonesia to join the program in 2009. The KFX/IFX program was started in 2010 with Indonesia was already become a partner. Joint R&D office then set up in Korea.

The phase 1 is technological development phase that started since 2010 until Desember 2013. During 2014 the project is halted due to waiting for South Korean parliament approval for starting the second phase of development which is a manufacturing phase.

The final design is derived from C 103 design that was developed by ADD Korea and PT Dirgantara Indonesia (Indonesian Aerospace) during the phase 1 stage.

In 2015, KAI joined the program with Lockheed Martin as consultant and manufacturing phase is started in late 2015 or early 2016 (I forgot exact time). In 2015 the work sharing manufacturing deal between Korea and Indonesia is also completed. From C 103 design, it later become C109 design that become the final design.

So the process is about 10 years already.

C 103 design under Indonesian wind tunnel test.

 
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Deino

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We should see Japan's stealth fighter progressing quickly as a result of this ... although I have to admit X-2 development is painfully slow.

i don't think since SK is surely a major rival but not an opponent and from what I understand the Japanese type, it is aimed for higher ambitions.
 

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