Japan’s ATD-X Stealth fighter software glitch and comparison of 5th Gen Fighters

Japan’s Advanced Technology Demonstrator-X (ATD-X) fighter test platform will not fly until at least late 2015 due to issues with the software that controls automatic engine restarts, according to officials at the country’s Ministry of Defence (MoD).

The first test flight was scheduled to take place before the end of the current financial year in March, but the problems affecting the engine control unit (ECU) will require several months to resolve, the officials said.

The ECU is a critical safety and power management system that automatically reactivates an engine if it shuts down in flight.

Here is a Japanese site on the project

Here is a picture comparing the sizes of 5th generation fighters from Japan, China, Russia and the USA

[Wikipedia] A fifth-generation jet fighter is a fighter aircraft classification used in the United States and elsewhere encompassing the most advanced jet fighter generation as of 2015. Fifth-generation aircraft are designed to incorporate numerous technological advances over the fourth-generation jet fighter. The exact characteristics of fifth-generation jet fighters are controversial and vague, with Lockheed Martin defining them as having all-aspect stealth even when armed, Low Probability of Intercept Radar (LPIR), high-performance air frames, advanced avionics features, and highly integrated computer systems capable of networking with other elements within the theatre of war for situational awareness. The only currently combat-ready fifth-generation fighter is the Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor, which entered service with the U.S. Air Force in 2005. The Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II, Sukhoi T-50, Chengdu J-20 and Shenyang J-31 are currently under various stages of testing and development.

The Sukhoi PAK FA (T-50) has technology from both the Su-47 and the MiG 1.44 and when fully developed is intended to replace the MiG-29 and Su-27 in the Russian inventory and serve as the basis of the Sukhoi/HAL FGFA project being developed with India. A fifth-generation jet fighter, it is designed to compete against the American F-22 Raptor and F-35 Lightning II. The Sukhoi PAK FA performed its first flight 29 January 2010.

Russia is now constructing a new stealth lightweight multirole fighter – Mikoyan LMFS (a.k.a. Project 1.27, MiG-1.27) by Mikoyan aircraft manufacturer.

China has several Chinese fifth-generation fighter programs. Robert Gates has claimed that the United States may possess as much as 20 times more “advanced stealth fighters” than China by 2020. The J-20 and J-31 are being tested.

SOURCES – Janes, defense update, wikipedia