Tactical fighter F-15J (160 pcs.) A single all-weather version of the F-15 fighter for the Japanese Air Force, manufactured from 1982 by Mitsubishi under license.
Structurally similar to the F-15 fighter, but has a simplified EW equipment. F-15DJ (42) is a further development of F-15J
F-2A / B (39 / 32pcs.) - A multipurpose fighter developed by Mitsubishi and Lockheed Martin for the Japan Self-Defense Air Force.
F-2A fighter, snapshot taken in December 2012. from the board of the Russian intelligence Tu-214P
F-2 was intended primarily to replace the third-generation Mitsubishi F-1 fighter-bomber - according to experts, unsuccessful, having an insufficient range and low combat load variations on the theme of SEPECAT "Jaguar". The appearance of the F-2 aircraft was greatly influenced by the American design of the General Dynamic “Edgayl Falcon” - a slightly larger and more maneuverable version of the F-16 “Flying Falcon” aircraft. Although the Japanese aircraft looks very similar to its American counterpart, it should be considered a new aircraft that differs from the prototype is not only differences in the design of the airframe, but also used structural materials, onboard systems, electronics and weapons. Compared to the American machine, perspective composite materials are much more widely used in the design of the Japanese fighter, which ensured a decrease in the relative weight of the airframe. In general, the design of the Japanese aircraft is simpler, lighter and more technological than the F-16.
F-4EJ Kai (60 pcs.) - Multipurpose fighter.
The Japanese version of the McDonnell-Douglas F-4. Phantom II
Satellite image of Google Earth: airplanes and Miho F-4J airbase
T-4 (200pcs.) - Light attack aircraft / training, developed by Kawasaki for the Japan Self-Defense Air Force.
On the T-4 flies Japanese aerobatic team Blue Impulse. The T-4 has a 4 suspension unit for fuel tanks, machine gun containers and other weapons needed to complete training tasks. The design incorporated the possibility of rapid modification in a lightweight strike aircraft. In this embodiment, it is capable of carrying on five suspension nodes up to 2000 kg of combat load. The aircraft can be retrofitted for use of AIM-9L Sidewind air-to-air UR.
Grumman E-2CHawkeye (13pcs.) - Amplification and control aircraft.
Boeing E-767 AWACS (4pcs)
DRLO aircraft built for Japan, on the basis of the passenger Boeing-767
C-1A (25pc.) A medium-range military transport aircraft developed by Kawasaki for the Japan Self-Defense Air Force.
C-1s form the backbone of the military transport park aviation Japanese self-defense forces.
The aircraft is designed for air transportation of troops, military equipment and cargo, landing of personnel and equipment by landing and parachute methods, evacuation of the wounded. The C-1 has a high-winged wing, a fuselage of circular cross-section, a T-shaped tail assembly and a three-post landing gear retractable in flight. In front of the fuselage is the cabin of the crew consisting of 5 people, behind it is a cargo cabin of length 10,8 m, width 3,6 m and height 2,25 m.
Both the crew cabin and the cargo compartment are sealed and connected to the air conditioning system. 60 soldiers with weapons or 45 paratroopers can be transported in a cargo cabin. In the case of transporting the wounded, 36 stretcher wounded and their accompanying personnel may be placed here. Through the cargo hatch located in the tail section of the aircraft, the following can be loaded: 105-mm howitzer or 2,5-t truck, or three cars
like "jeep". The landing of equipment and cargoes is carried out through this hatch, and parachutists can also be landed through the side doors at the rear of the fuselage.
Google Earth Satellite Image: T-4 and C-1A aircraft from Tsuiki Air Base
EC-1 (1pcs.) - Radio reconnaissance aircraft based on the C-1 transport.
YS-11 (7pcs.) - EW aircraft based on medium-haul passenger aircraft.
C-130H (16pcs.) - A multi-purpose military transport aircraft.
Boeing KC-767J (4pcs.) - Strategic aircraft tanker based on a Boeing 767.
UH-60JBlack Hawk (39pcs.) - Multi-purpose helicopter.
CH-47JChinook (16pcs.) - A multi-purpose military transport helicopter.
Air Defense: 120 PU Patriot and Advanced Hawk.
Satellite image of Google Earth: Patriot’s anti-aircraft missile system for Japan’s air defense in Tokyo
Satellite image of Google Earth: Advanced Air Defense Air Defense System of Japan’s air defense, a suburb of Tokyo
The formation of the current Japanese Air Force began with the adoption of 1 July 1954, the law on the establishment of the Office of National Defense, as well as land, naval and air forces. The problem of aviation technology and personnel was solved with American help. In April, 1956 was signed an agreement to supply Japan with Starfighter F-104 jets.
At that time, this multipurpose fighter passed flight tests, showed high capabilities as an air defense fighter, which corresponded to the views of the country's leadership on the use of armed forces "only in the interests of defense."
Subsequently, during the creation and development of the armed forces, the Japanese leadership proceeded from the need to ensure "the country's initial defense against aggression." The subsequent response to a potential aggressor under a security treaty was to be given by the US military. The guarantor of such a response Tokyo considered the deployment of US military bases on the Japanese islands, while Japan took on many of the costs of ensuring the life of the Pentagon.
Based on the foregoing, and began equipping the Japanese Air Force.
“Starfighter” at the end of 1950-s, despite the high accident rate, became one of the main fighters of the Air Force of many countries, was produced in various versions, including in Japan. It was an all-weather interceptor F-104J. From 1961, the Air Force of the Rising Sun received 210 of Starfighter type aircraft, and 178 of them were produced by the well-known Japanese concern Mitsubishi under license.
It should be noted that the construction of jet fighters in Japan was established as early as 1957, when the production of the F-86F Saber American aircraft began (also under license).
F-86F "Saber" Japan Air Defense Force
But by the middle of the 1960-s, the F-104J began to be regarded as an obsolete machine. Therefore, in January 1969, the Japanese Cabinet decided to equip the country's air force with new fighter-interceptors. As a prototype, a third-generation American multi-role fighter F-4E "Phantom" was chosen. But the Japanese, ordering an option F-4EJ, set the condition that it was an interceptor plane. The Americans did not object, and with F-4EJ all the equipment was removed to work on ground targets, but the air-to-air weapons were reinforced. All in accordance with the Japanese concept of "only in the interests of defense." The leadership of Japan demonstrated, at least in conceptual documents, the desire for the country's armed forces to remain national armed forces, to ensure the security of their territory.
The "softening" of Tokyo's approaches to offensive weapons, including those in the Air Force, began to be observed in the second half of the 1970s under pressure from Washington, especially after the adoption of the so-called "Guidelines for Japanese-US Defense Cooperation" in 1978. Prior to this, no joint actions, even exercises, self-defense forces and the American parts in Japan were conducted. Since then, much, including in the performance characteristics of aviation technology, has changed in the Japanese Self-Defense Forces, based on joint actions. For still-produced F-4EJ, for example, equipment is installed to refuel in the air. The last Phantom for the Japanese Air Force entered 1981. But already in 1984, a program to extend their lifespan was adopted. In this case, "Phantoms" began to be equipped with means of bombing. These aircraft were called Kai.
But this does not mean that the main task of the Japanese Air Force has been changed. It remained the same - the provision of air defense of the country. That is why, with 1982, the all-weather F-15J interceptor fighter jets began to arrive in the Japanese Air Force. It was a modification of the fourth-generation US all-weather tactical fighter F-15 "Eagle", intended "to gain air superiority." And to this day, the F-15J is the main air defense fighter of the Japanese Air Force (in all, they delivered 223 of such aircraft).
As you can see, the emphasis in the choice of aviation technology was almost always placed on fighters aimed at air defense tasks, at winning air superiority. This also applies to F-104J, and F-4EJ, and F-15J.
Only in the second half of the 1980-ies did Washington and Tokyo agree to jointly develop a direct support fighter.
The validity of these allegations is confirmed in the course of collisions due to the need to re-equip the fleet of fighters of the country's military aviation. The main objective of the Japanese Air Force is to ensure the air defense of the country. Although added and the task of providing aviation support to the ground forces and navy. This is evident from the organizational structure of the Air Force. In its structure there are three aviation directions - Northern, Central and Western. Each of them has two fighter aviation wings, including two squadrons. In this case, 12 squadrons - nine air defense and three tactical fighter. In addition, there is a South-Western mixed aviation wing, which includes another fighter aviation squadron of air defense. F-15J, F-4EJ Kai planes are armed with air defense squadrons.
As you can see, the core of the "base forces" of the Japanese Air Force is made up of fighter-interceptors. The squadrons of direct support are only three, and they are armed with the F-2 fighter joint Japanese-American development.
The current program of the Japanese government to re-equip the aircraft fleet of the country's air force in general, aims to replace the outdated "Phantoms". Considered two options. In the first version of the tender for the new F-X fighter, it was supposed to purchase from the 20 to 60 fifth-generation air defense fighters similar to the TTH to the American Raptor fighter (Predator, produced by Lockheed Martin / Boeing). It was adopted by the US Air Force in December 22.
According to estimates by Japanese experts, the F-22 most closely matches the defense concepts of Japan. The backup option was also considered an American fighter F-35, but, as it is believed, this type of machine will need more. In addition, it is a multi-purpose aircraft and its main purpose is to strike targets on the ground, which is not consistent with the concept “only in the interests of defense”. However, the US Congress in 1998 banned the export of the “newest fighter aircraft, which used all the best achievements” of the United States aviation industry. Given this, most other countries buyers of American fighters are satisfied with earlier models of the F-15 and F-16, or are awaiting the start of sales of the F-35, in the production of which the same technologies are used as in the F-22, but it is cheaper, more diverse application and from the very beginning of development was intended for export.
Of the American aviation corporations, Boeing had the closest ties with the Japanese Air Force for many years. In March, he proposed a new, significantly upgraded model F-15FX. Two other fighters produced by Boeing are also offered, but they have no chance of success, since much of these machines are outdated. In the Boeing application, it is attractive to the Japanese that the corporation officially guarantees assistance in the deployment of licensed production, and also promises to provide the technology used in the manufacture of aircraft to Japanese companies.
But most likely, according to Japanese experts, the winner in the tender will be F-35. It has almost the same high performance characteristics as the F-22, it belongs to the fifth-generation fighter and has some capabilities that the Predator does not have. True, the F-35 is still being finalized. His entry into the Japanese Air Force, according to various estimates, may begin in 2015 – 2016. Until that time, all F-4 will serve their life. The delay in choosing a new fighter for the country's Air Force is a matter of concern in Japanese business circles, because in the 2011 year, after the release of the last F-2 ordered, for the first time in post-war Japan it was necessary, albeit temporarily, to curtail its own construction of fighters.
Now in Japan there are about 1200 companies associated with the production of fighters. They have special equipment and personnel with the necessary training. The leadership of the corporation "Mitsubishi Dzhukogio", which has the largest portfolio of orders of the Ministry of Defense, believes that "the production technologies of the defense sector, if they are not supported, are lost and never revived."
In general, the Japanese Air Force, are well-equipped, fairly modern military equipment, which is in high combat readiness, is fully capable of solving the assigned tasks.
The naval aviation of the Marine Self-Defense Forces (Navy) of Japan is armed with 116 aircraft and 107 helicopters.
The patrol aircraft squadrons are armed with basic Orion R-ES aircraft patrol aircraft.
Anti-submarine helicopter squadrons are equipped with SH-60J and SH-60K helicopters.
Anti-submarine SH-60J Japanese Navy
The search and rescue squadrons include three search and rescue teams (three UH-60J helicopters). There is a squadron of rescue seaplane (US-1A, US-2)
Seaplanes US-1A Navy of Japan
And two EW squadrons equipped with EW EP-3, UP-3D and U-36A, as well as reconnaissance OR-ES.
Separate aviation squadrons, in accordance with their purpose, solve the tasks of conducting flight tests of naval aircraft, participate in operations of mine-trawling forces, as well as in air transfer operations for personnel and cargo.
On the Japanese islands, as part of a bilateral Japanese-US treaty, 5 is stationed on a permanent basis - the US Air Force Air Force (headquarters at Yokota airbase), which includes 3 aircraft wings equipped with the most modern combat aircraft, including 5-generation F-22 "Raptor".
Satellite image of Google Earth: F-22 aircraft of the US Air Force at Kadena airbase
In addition, the 7th operational fleet of the US Navy is constantly operating in the Western Pacific. 7th Commander's Headquarters fleet located in PVMB Yokosuka (Japan). The fleet’s formations and ships are based on the Yokosuka and Sasebo naval warplanes, aviation - at the Atsugi, Misawa airbases, and marines - at Camp Butler (Okinawa) on long-term lease of these bases from Japan. Fleet forces regularly participate in operations to ensure security on the theater of operations, in joint exercises with the Japanese Navy.
Satellite image of Google Earth: aircraft carrier J. Washington in the Navy Yokosuka
The carrier strike group of the US Navy, which includes at least one aircraft carrier, is almost always in the region.
In the area of the Japanese islands is concentrated a very powerful aviation group, several times superior to our forces in this region.
For comparison, the combat aircraft of our country in the Far East as part of the Air Force and Air Defense Command, the former 11 Army of the Air Force and Air Defense is the operational force of the air forces of the Russian Federation, with headquarters in Khabarovsk. It contains no more than 350 combat aircraft, much of which are not combat ready.
In terms of numbers, naval aviation of the Pacific Fleet is about three times lower than that of the Japanese Navy.
Reference book K.V. Chuprin “ARMED FORCES OF THE CIS AND BALTIC COUNTRIES”