In the course of designing aircraft intended to be used as a weapons system, engineering tradeoffs are made in an effort to optimize particular aspects of aircraft performance. Many of these design decisions are situated politically and choices often are made for reasons that extend well beyond system performance. Unfortunately, some decisions may ultimately compromise overall system performance. Invariably, these design decisions and engineering tradeoffs will have disproportionately large effects years after they are made, potentially altering how countries around the world train and equip themselves for combat. This seminar will analyze design decisions and engineering tradeoffs made during the design of the F-15 and F-16 fighter aircraft in the 1970s. Both the anticipated and unanticipated long-term effects of these decisions will be discussed.
IAP. Contemporary Military Topics. Battlefield Consequences (MIT students, staff, faculty and affiliates only)
Lieutenant Colonel, US Air Force
January 17, 2019
Building E40-496 (Pye Room)