Friday, August 4, 2017

Boeing's Flying X-32 Pig

Boeing military needs a “Game Changer”. Whether it’s a fighter jet, a drone or autonomous war bird, it needs to make a statement war fighter. Its last chance was the F-35 contest which it lost to Lockheed in an ugly fashion that only a US Marine could have loved. Was Boeing just seeking a participation award from the DoD with its rendering of its flying pig?

Image result for X-32

How in the heck could that make a radar profile the size of a fishing boat like the 700 ft.USS Zumwalt had accomplished? It's smaller than a fishing boat without fishing nets. That's how! Was Boeing really trying with this offering or was it a rubber option for making Lockheed's F-35 take the award and without the appearance of Boeing taking a fall in the first round of the fight.

So it went Mach 1.6 and the vertical lift system was not perfected during the competitive test. It once was to co-star in a comedy war movie about a hover tank. The hover tank made it past the DoD generals who approved it and the audience laughed. The X-32 didn't make the movie. The cardboard tank did in its place. 

The X-32 would scare the crap out of frozen soldiers in fox holes. It could lay down fire suppression in an impressive fashion. The flying box was so stealthy it fooled a barn door into thinking it was a brick wall. Boeing was proud of its 1960's delta wing style and it did lose to the F-35 on style points. 

The advice given Boeing was to stop having staff meeting for any new idea or it may end up with another X-32. It certainly was a staff meeting concept put together with copious amounts of coffee and donuts. The same team assembled an elephant for the run for the roses at the derby.

The Defense department wanted a Multi-role fighter that could take-off vertical, go Mach 1.6 and be invisible to radar. The the DoD wanting an air frame space large enough to stuff technology into it that would beat any future war scenario. 

Boeing took the DoD seriously and showed them this picture. The DoD met afterwards and gave a sigh of relieve having Boeing's X-32 in the competition. It could ease back and justify it's a competition after-all, and the award would go to Lockheed without question. Boeing would make money also on this deal for taking a powder.

Many a pundit said something is wrong with this picture, it just doesn't look like a fighter nor can it do all mission roles required. It didn't matter since it was not the choice anyways from the start of this Multi-role fighter saga. At the time of the awarding, Lockheed was no longer a competitor, and it did not have to act as the competition. 

In American enterprise it is said, "Competition makes the best product". The Lockheed offering stopped being competitive over 10 years ago. It just had to please the Hover Tank Gang lead by Sargent Bilko at the DoD. The new jet competition is between who can do what to whom for the most amount of money. 

I do believe, by accident, the F-35 will turn out just fine for the best money can buy results, which has become the true American culture. No longer does competition make diamonds because doing it that way only costs time and money, huh?