Japanese officials have just confirmed a radiation leak at Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear power plant. A radiation level of 1,015 Î¼Sv/h (mircrosieverts per hour) has been measured near the plant before the blast. The situation is deemed almost as serious as the Three Mile Island partial reactor meltdown in the 70s, and the Chernobyl disaster in 1986. Cesium would have been detected. Therefore, the reactor number one might be having a meltdown.
The U.S. is sending special coolant. Four workers have been injured. The cordoned-off area has been widened to a 20km-radius zone. The roof of the reactor would have collapsed in the aftermath of the explosion. A scram (shutdown) might not be achieved on another reactor because of a glitch in the emergency cooling system.
First of all, it is not that simple. Last instance: The « World’s Armed Forces Forum » has recently posted a new topic relating to this Prepa PLS Anglais post: /rafale-vs-typhooneurofighter/ which was edited here on December 20, 2009. It is very clear that this was just a post to pass rumors on to other websurfers who may not have already read/heard such gossips.
This post may have been deemed as a preposterous one among the aviation community. That is why I then posted this post: /french-fighter-aircraft-performance/ in early 2010. Well, in hindsight I ought to add that I had forgotten that confrontation between the French Dassault fighter aircraft with the Eurofighter: the Rafales – there were only two of them according to the report – shot down four Typhoons during an exercise. Yes, twice as many…
The assumption that a Rafale might have shot down an F-22 Raptor left my readers in utter disbelief in 2009. Well, in hindsight again, I ought to add that I had forgotten to quote the Korean balance sheet about the Rafale performance, as I had forgotten that a United Arab Emirates Air Force (UAEAF) Mirage 2000-9 (variant of Mirage 2000-5 Mk.2) flown by a French pilot would have – virtually – shot down an F-22 Raptor as well…
I would never write anything like « an F-5 cannot down any French jetfighter ». Let us get real on this – I guess that either an F-5 or a MiG-21 could down any Mirage 2000 or Rafale. It depends on the radars; the sensors; the weapon systems used that day; the weather conditions; the pilots’ training; and their skills; the distance – BVR or WVR, not to mention autonomy; etc. When I read that some people remain adamant that any Rafale cannot have downed any F-22 Raptor, I think that they have the right to take such a stance. As I have the right to believe that they are wrong in their assertion. All-in-all, everything would be rumors… So, why should they care about them?
The pragmatic Swiss have honestly stated that they would be interested in the French Rafale for they got the results of their demanding NAC tests. However, due to a shrinking defense budget, they may not buy Rafales.
As far as the Brazilian, Emirati, Greek, and Indian (for MMRCA tender) media are concerned, they have already issued – at least once – breaking news according to which their countries would not purchase any Rafale for it would be « too expensive« .
Blimey! Let them buy what they like. I do not know whether it is worth paying for such performance because with these tenders, it is not a question of purchasing warplanes but foreign policies. Nonetheless, I would not be suprised to learn that some French Rafale pilots might be eager to challenge the brand new Chinese J-20 5th-generation fighter aircraft as it is deemed to be less performant than the F-22 Raptor.
If it were to happen – J-20 vs Rafale – the result would remain, as usual, among the rumors. 😉
The US Navy X-47B UCAS-D (Unmanned Combat Air System Demonstration) successfully completed its first flight at Edwards AFB on February 4, 2011.
The flight which was conducted by a US Navy/Northrop Grumman test team, lasted 29 minutes. The flight test was aimed to provide test data to check the system software for guidance and navigation, and the aerodynamic control of the tailless drone. The X-47B is deemed to safely take off from, and land on the deck of an aircraft carrier.
Other flight tests should be performed to validate the airworthiness of the drone in Naval Air Station Patuxent River (NAS Pax River), Maryland till 2013. Here is the maiden flight video:
According to Le Monde, and Reuters the Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff would much rather have American F/A-18 Super Hornets than buy French Dassault Rafales to upgrade the FAB – Força Aérea Brasileira, the Brazilian Air Force.
Mrs Rousseff would have stated that the American fighter aircraft would be superior to the Rafale when she met with Timothy Geithner current United States Secretary of the Treasury.
One may wonder why as the Rafale is almost superior to the Super Hornet in almost every skill as far as performance is concerned.
Last but not least, the radius of combat of the French fighter is far longer than its rivals. The Brazilian president is to make a decision presently.
However, and particularly because of the range difference, it would not be wise to reject the Rafale in a country as vast as Brazil. Anyway, everybody knows that wisdom has nothing to do with such decision 😉
Photo courtesy: © Xavier Cotton http://passiondesavions.blogspot.de/