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Japan plans to start domestic fighter jet project in 2015

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World Aviation Defense and Security News - Japan
 
 
 Japan plans to start domestic fighter jet project in 2015
 
The Japanese government is planning to develop an entirely domestic fighter jet for the first time since the end of World War II. It will work with major defense contractors such as Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and IHI on the project, which is a milestone in Japan's defense procurement policy.
     
The Japanese government is planning to develop an entirely domestic fighter jet for the first time since the end of World War II. It will work with major defense contractors such as Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and IHI on the project, which is a milestone in Japan's defense procurement policy.
The aircraft shown here will test new engine developed for future Japan-made fighter jet
     
The project will start in earnest in fiscal 2015, with work on a prototype engine and assessments of the aircraft's stealth capabilities.

The first big step in the project will take place in January, when an aircraft mounted with a test engine is scheduled to fly for the first time. The engine was developed jointly by the Ministry of Defense and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and will serve as the basis for the fighter's prototype engine.

The goal is to develop a light and powerful engine by combining components that have been developed separately, including a high-pressure turbine and a fuel system.

IHI, which is helping to develop the engine, is using ceramic composites for the turbine in an industry first. The composite is lighter than the nickel alloy traditionally used in turbines and can withstand temperatures up to 1,400 C. The manufacturer hopes to use the material for engines on passenger jets in the future.

The development cost has been estimated at more than 1 trillion yen ($9.1 billion).