The Lockheed Martin/Boeing F-22 Raptor is a fifth-generation fighter aircraft that uses stealth technology. It was designed primarily as an air superiority fighter, but has additional capabilities that include ground attack, electronic warfare, and signals intelligence roles. Lockheed Martin Aeronautics is the prime contractor and is responsible for the majority of the airframe, weapon systems and final assembly of the F-22. Program partner Boeing Integrated Defense Systems provides the wings, aft fuselage, avionics integration, and all of the pilot and maintenance training systems. In April 2006, the cost of the F-22 was assessed by the Government Accountability Office to be $361 million per aircraft F-22 Raptor - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia The Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II is a fifth-generation, single-seat, single-engine, stealth-capable military strike fighter, a multirole aircraft that can perform close air support, tactical bombing, and air defense missions. The F-35 has three different models; one is the conventional takeoff and landing variant, the second is short takeoff and vertical-landing variant, and the third is a carrier-based variant. The F-35 is descended from the X-35, the product of the Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) program. Its development is being principally funded by the United States, with the United Kingdom, and other partner governments providing additional funding. It is being designed and built by an aerospace industry team led by Lockheed Martin with Northrop Grumman and BAE Systems as major partners. Demonstrator aircraft flew in 2000, with the first flight on 15 December 2006. Concerns about the F-35's performance have resulted partially from reports of RAND simulations where numerous Russian Sukhoi fighters defeat a handful of F-35s by denying tanker refueling. As a result of these issues the then-Australian defence minister, Joel Fitzgibbon, requested a formal briefing from the Department of Defence (Australia) on the computer simulation. This briefing stated that the reports of the simulation were inaccurate, and that it did not compare the F-35's performance against that of other aircraft. The criticism of the F-35 has been dismissed by the Pentagon and manufacturer. The USAF has conducted an analysis of the F-35's air-to-air performance against all 4th generation fighter aircraft currently available, and has found the F-35 to be at least four times more effective. Maj Gen Charles R. Davis, USAF, the F-35 program executive officer, has stated that the "F-35 enjoys a significant Combat Loss Exchange Ratio advantage over the current and future air-to-air threats, to include Sukhois". The Russian, Indian, Chinese, and other air forces operate Sukhoi Su-27/30 fighters. The F-35 will have a helmet mounted cueing system similar to the system already in service with the F-15s, F-16s and F/A-18s, the AN/AAQ-37 Electro Optical Distributed Aperture System that "renders maneuverability irrelevant", and improved data processors. Lockheed Martin claims the F-35 will have turning agility/ability of up to 9 g's and provide close-in or long-range air-to-air combat capability second only to the F-22 Raptor, and superior to all other fighters.[ F-35 Lightning II - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia While these two aircraft are good examples of the best American Aviation has to offer, it must be said that the current debate over the F-22 is one that does not take into consideration of actual roles. The F-22 is a pure air-to-air fighter aircraft which does have air to ground capability , but it is UNMATCHED in capability when it comes to all around performace. The F-35 is a completly different aircraft and it's mission is more akin to a fighter bomber much along the lines of a F-18 , it has good performance in the air to air role but that is NOT it's primary role. Now while it is my opnion that the USAF should be allowed to purchase whatever the mission calls for, the solution here on an economic level seems to be a simple one. Lift the ban on exports on the F-22 and that would result in around 120 more aircraft by foreign buyers such as Aus. and Japan which makes good strategic sense and also good economic sense for this nation. It will also allow the line to remain open should the USAF wish to revist more F-22's should a need arise through attrition without the need to spend billions of dollars to restart the line. In the mean time the DoD can concentrate on the F-35 and finally get this aircraft to the warfighters.