F-22 Raptor performing wild back flip maneuver is like something from a video game

It makes it look like the easiest thing in the world.
  • The F-22 Raptor is a supersonic aircraft produced by Lockheed Martin and Boeing
  • It has been operational since 1996
  • It can fly at Mach 2 – or over 2,400 km/h

Published on May 2, 2024 at 8:00PM (UTC+4)

Last updated on May 3, 2024 at 11:28AM (UTC+4)

Edited by Amelia Jean Hershman-Jones
F-22 Raptor

The F-22 Raptor is an extremely fast and agile aircraft.

A video of an F-22 Raptor performing a wild back flip maneuver recently surfaced, and it honestly looks like it belongs to a video game.

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Military aircraft are designed to defy physics in all kinds of ways.

The F-35, for example, can land vertically, like a helicopter, even though it’s a jet.

By contrast, the F-22 can do ‘back flips’ at high altitudes like it’s nothing, almost like playing GTA in real life.

Then again, that’s what these aircraft are designed for.

Not every military jet is designed in the same way, of course, because different types of jets prioritize different things.

The B-2 Stealth Bomber, for example, isn’t necessarily the fastest jet in the world, but it still an icon because of its stealth capabilities.

Meanwhile, the F-22 Raptor made a name for itself by being very good at a wide variety of things.

It is the first operational aircraft to combine supercruise, supermaneuverability and stealth.

Translated, it’s the first supermaneuverable and stealthy supersonic military aircraft that’s actually completed missions.

In aerospace jargon, an aircraft is considered ‘supermaneuverable’ when it can execute tactical, which visually could probably be described as acrobatic, maneuvers.

Built by Lockheed Martin in partnership with Boeing, the F-22 Raptor is relatively new.

It was ‘only’ unveiled in 1996, which makes it recent, when you compare for example to the B-52, which has been in service for 70 (!) years.

The F-22 Raptor runs on a pair of Pratt & Whitney turbofan engines, producing over 70,000 pounds-force of thrust in total.

It’s pretty fast, too, as it is capable of flying at Mach 2 (1,355 mph / 2,414 km/h).

And it is also outrageously expensive.

According to the Governmental Accountability Office, as reported by nationalinterest.org and Reuters, the F-22 program cost $67 billion in total, as of December 2023.

That amount includes the cost per plane, around $350 million on average, but it also includes everything else, including training, maintenance and so on.

At the peak, roughly 20 years ago, the F-22 program cost a whopping $5 billion per year, on average.

Lockheed Martin built 195 aircraft in total, including 8 test jets, but the last one was built in 2011.

So that means the cost per year, while still impressive, is trending down.

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