F/A-18 Hornet Fighter Jet to Finally Be Replaced, U.S. Navy Reveals First Details

The F/A-XX Fighter is expected to be the most powerful aircraft of the US Navy
F-16 Fighting Falcons Aerial Refuel

The US Navy acknowledged the necessity for a next-generation fighter jet and has unveiled the first details of the 6th Generation F/A-XX fighter that is all set to replace the F/A-18 Hornet by 2030. The aircraft will fly faster and farther than the Hornet – and its improved sensor abilities and cutting-edge weapons will make the F/A-XX fighter a decisive combat aircraft in the coming years. 

A document called “Navy Aviation Vision, 2030–2035” includes the artwork and other meaningful details related to the upcoming fighter jet, and the project is advancing under the Next Generation Air Dominance program of the US Navy.

But the status of the P / A-XX program isn’t yet official, as the Navy command hasn’t yet determined the final requirements of this unique generation fighter jet. 

Capable of fulfilling the Navy’s requirements

Sailor prepares to launch F A 18 F Super Hornet
Sailor prepares to launch F/A-18 F Super Hornet by Cole Schroeder. Public Domain.

The F/A-XX has been developed to perform with the most state-of-the-art stealth capabilities. To decrease the radar visibility of the aircraft, the structure presents a smooth coupling of the wing with the fuselage and the lack of a tail.


This next-generation aircraft is expected to meet the needs of the Navy as the program is concentrated on executing AI to help aboard drones in decision-making. Also, it might have unmanned fighting abilities and control over the functions of drones.

With an improved range and advanced weapons load, the jet will work effectively on long-distance missions in the Indo-Pacific zone.  

Withdrawal of F/A -18 Hornet

FA 18F Super Hornet
F/A-18F Super Hornet lands by Kyle Gahlau. Public Domain.

Built and conceived by Northrop Grumman, the Super Hornet is one of the finest fighter aircraft of the US Navy. The jet performs quite well in the tactical range, including air dominance, day/night attack with close air backing, fighter escort, meticulously controlled arms, and much more. 


Nevertheless, the F/A-18 Super Hornet jet is becoming outdated for contemporary warfare. Like the F-22, technological advancements are making the defense system more sophisticated, making the F-22 trackable.

In addition, countries like Russia and China are progressing in aircraft development. So, the US enjoys an aircraft that can efficiently face the challenges of modern warfare. 

When the Super Hornet retires, the mixture of the new F/A-XX and F-35C will give the US more strategic combat power and attack capabilities with 2 superior aircraft complementing each other.


Advances of the NGAD Project

Boeing FA 18F Super Hornet
Boeing FA-18F Super Hornet by aceebee, licensed under CC by 2.0.

The 6th generation combat jet may serve as a “quarterback” for unmanned planes developed as command-and-control junctions, equipped with electronic war sets, transiting a wide range of munitions, and much more.  

The F/A-XX would be great in launching missiles at longer ranges, flying longer distances than fighter jets today, and having hypersonic missiles that would improve the stand-off range of these jets.  

All these capabilities will ensure that this new aircraft will dominate the skies for decades, and will be the Navy flagship to compete with other aircraft like the ones built by China in the near future.


A terrific advanced future fighter aircraft to confront more challenging warfare situations

The FA-18 will be replaced by the F/A-XX
FA-18F Super Hornet Low Fast Pass by Valder137, licensed under the CC by 2.0.

The F/A-XX fighter aircraft will be one of the most developed warfare weapons of the US. It is anticipated to be highly fierce, sustainable, electronically connected, survivable, and unmanned with autonomous capabilities.

In fact, it will be capable of surviving the most lethal enemy attacks and will also be effective in delivering continuous airspace and ground support. 

Feature image credit: F-16 Fighting Falcons Aerial Refuel by Burt Traynor. Public Domain.