South Korea previously released its first-ever fighter aircraft. The new KF-X could be the breakthrough of SoKor when it comes to military and defense activities. This new fighter plane is expected to help the Asian country to have a greater connection with the U.S., which is its first partner in developing various military innovations.
KF-X is considered the next-generation aircraft developed by Korea Aerospace Industries Ltd (KAI). It is expected to be a less-stealthy and cheaper version of its current F-35, which is built in the United States. F-35 is the first line of defense of South Korea if they are sudden air attacks from its enemy countries.
As of the moment, the revealed KF-X is still a prototype version. It is currently displayed at the KAI headquarters in the southern city of Sacheon. South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in and other representatives from Indonesia, who partnered with South Korea on its latest military defense project.
President Jae-in stated that their latest KF-X shows that South Korea is now in a new era of independent defense. He added that this new plane could give SoKor some advantages since it now has a domestically produced fighter plane.
On the other hand, President Moon Jae-in also explained that they developed the new hi-tech KF-X because their defense needs it and they can be built it, so why not? Right? South Korea’s leader also explained that this new fighter plane is expected not only boosts the defense industry, but also the country’s economic growth through exports.
Right now, South Korea is getting large amounts of military hardware from the U.S. President Jae-in said that the country is now planning to change its acquisition policy so that most of its military hardware is now developed domestically, and the new fighter jet could be the start of this.
KF-X possible features
Right now, South Korea’s new fighter jet is still in development. This means that any feature that KAI will disclose could still change in the future. The first feature that President Jae-in announced is the new AESA radar, which he said can also be used to upgrade the current fighter planes, such as F-15K and KF-16.
The new fighter jet is expected to have a maximum speed of around Mach 2. However, the developer said that its exact speed right now is Mach 1.81, which means that it is 1.81 times the speed of sound. On the other hand, the new jet could also have a maximum range of around 2,900 kilometers when in a full tank. It also has some features that are offered by the fifth-generation F-35A, as explained by KAI.
Aside from the speed and range, KAI confirmed that its new fighter jet could carry more than 7,700 kilograms, allowing it to carry pods for missiles, as well as fuel barrels. The giant South Korean aircraft developer added that the country’s first fighter plane, including new jets from other countries, could carry air-to-air missiles, including Europe’s Meteor Missiles (MBDA) and Germany’s IRIS-T.
Right now, these features are still speculative, meaning that South Korea’s new jet could have more than Mach 1.81 speed and other more advanced capabilities.