Second Raptor Flies Non-stop Cross
Country to Edwards
Aug. 26, 1998
Raptor 4002, the second F-22 built by Air Force contractors Lockheed Martin, Boeing and Pratt& Whitney, took off from Dobbins Air Reserve Base, Marietta, Ga. at 10:35 a.m. EST. En route, the aircraft conducted several air refueling evaluations behind a KC-135.
"The flight went exactly as planned," said Lt. Col. Steve Rainey, who piloted the aircraft on the program’s first cross-continental flight. "I’m running out of adjectives to describe the way the F-22 flies. This is the best aircraft I’ve ever flown in aerial refueling. It is an extremely stable platform and a joy to fly."
The Raptor flew at 28,000 feet and .7 Mach during the four and one-half hour flight to its new home at the F-22 Combined Test Force, here.
"We have achieved yet another milestone in the F-22 test program," said Lt. Col. C.D. Moore, commander of the F-22 CTF. "Having two aircraft at Edwards will enable us to expand the F-22 envelope much faster."
Since 4002’s first flight from Dobbins on June 29, Air Force and contractor test pilots have flown the aircraft 10 times for a total of 20 flight test hours, completing a number of test points to measure its flying qualities. Flying quality maneuvers have included bank-to-bank rolls, flight at varied engine settings and landing gear retraction and extension. Combined, the two Raptors have flown 38 sorties totaling 59.4 hours at Edwards and Marietta.
The F-22 is widely regarded as the most advanced fighter in the world, combining a revolutionary leap in technology and capability with reduced support requirements and maintenance costs. It will replace the F-15 as America’s front-line air superiority fighter, with deliveries to operational units beginning in 2002.
The F-22’s combination of stealth, integrated avionics, maneuverability and super cruise – supersonic flight without afterburner – will give Raptor pilots a first-look, first-shot, first-kill capability against the aircraft of any potential enemy. The F-22 is designed to provide not just air superiority, but air dominance, winning quickly and decisively with few U.S. and allied casualties. The F-22 also has an inherent air-to-ground capability.
A team of contractors led by Lockheed Martin, Boeing and Pratt & Whitney builds the F-22.
Flight Test Center
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