Here’s what would happen if you had a chance to steal an F-22 Raptor Stealth Fighter

Here’s what would happen if you had a chance to steal an F-22 Raptor Stealth Fighter

By Dario Leone
May 30 2021
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Given the Raptor’s unique capabilities what would happen if you had to steal an F-22 and manage to take off with it? How/Would they ever find you? Or would it just be your Raptor from that point on?

The Lockheed-Martin F-22 Raptor is designed to project air dominance, rapidly and at great distances and defeat threats attempting to deny access to the US Military Branches, the US Air Force, US Army, US Navy and US Marine Corps. The F-22 cannot be matched by any known or projected fighter aircraft.

Its combination of stealth, supercruise, maneuverability, and integrated avionics, coupled with improved supportability, represents an exponential leap in warfighting capabilities: in fact, surface-to-air missile engagement envelopes are drastically shrunk and enemy capabilities to track and engage the F-22 minimized.

So, given the Raptor’s unique capabilities what would happen if you had to steal an F-22 and manage to take off with it? How/Would they ever find you? Or would it just be your Raptor from that point on?

‘Unlikely, but let’s assume you have the access to the aircraft, the plane is fueled, and you safely took off into air space,’ explains former US Army Missile Maintenance Officer Chieftain Logistian on Quora.

F-22A Print
This print is available in multiple sizes from AircraftProfilePrints.com – CLICK HERE TO GET YOURS. F-22A Raptor 192nd Fighter Wing, 149th Fighter Squadron, FF/04-4082 – Langley AFB, VA – 2014

‘You have no armament and are limited to the range your onboard fuel will take you.

‘The faster and lower you fly consumes your fuel faster decreasing your range and flight time. Assuming you can avoid flight paths of other aircraft without outside assistance from Air Traffic Controllers (ATC), you need to land before your fuel runs out.

‘Then comes the challenge of avoiding landing site security (greatly improved since 9/11), refueling, engine and airframe servicing. Foreign Object Damage (FOD) is a common destroyer of jet engines. If you need any special tools or parts your next (?] take-off will likely not end well. If you do not have a protective hanger your problems will grow. Not knowing all the “bells-n-whistles” of the aircraft you likely missed the “black box” transponder or Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) systems and satellite tracking knows your location. Since you will be a threat to National Security, trained and armed pilots are poised to intercept you before you can land or leave USA airspace. You may find yourself locked up for a long time for your theft and joy ride.’

F-22 Raptor model
This model is available from AirModels – CLICK HERE TO GET YOURS.

Photo credit: Carlos Menendez San Juan via Wikipedia


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Dario Leone

Dario Leone

Dario Leone is an aviation, defense and military writer. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviation Geek Club” one of the world’s most read military aviation blogs. His writing has appeared in The National Interest and other news media. He has reported from Europe and flown Super Puma and Cougar helicopters with the Swiss Air Force.

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