KF – 21 Boramae (Hawk)

Unveiling of South Korea’s advanced fourth generation fighter

South Korea recently unveiled the first indigenous 21-KF Shahin fighter, formerly known as the KF-X, and became the eighth country to develop the world’s most advanced supersonic jet! President Moon Jae-in also called it a turning point in the country’s aviation industry, saying South Korea would be the world’s seventh-largest aviation power by the 2030s.

– Falcon of the Peninsula

The development of the full-scale 2015 and its construction began in 2019. Last September, it was announced that the final assembly and connection of the body and wings of the first aircraft was underway. It will also fly in 2022 and will enter service in 2024. The 40 aircraft are scheduled to be operational by 2028 and the total order of 130 aircraft to be completed by 2032. The project is worth $ 9.7 billion and Indonesia has a 20% share plus 50 aircraft.
The 21KF is Seoul’s most ambitious military program and part of an air force modernization that will replace the old Phantom and Tiger fighters as soon as it enters service, complementing 60 F-35s and 15-F and 16-F jets. The prototypes are 4 single-pilot and 2 double-passenger, the first contract is in 2024 for the delivery of 40 fighter jets of Block 1 air superiority from 2026, which only has air combat capability.
The development process is ambitiously short and will be completed within 4 to 5 years before the delivery of the first operational hawk. Then block 2 will be produced with air-to-ground capability. Developing and building a multi-role fighter is a huge challenge, but Seoul has a lot of experience. They have previously manufactured and exported the native FA50 light fighter. The Korean F16s were also assembled inside.

– Attributes

KIA (Korea Aerospace Industries) got a lot of help from Lockheed Martin in the design phase and the falcon became very similar to F22! Compared to F35 also that The ultrasonic air inlet has more concealment, the KF21 air intake is in the style of a boundary separator layer. It also has some radar evasion properties such as tilted vertical rudders, body shaping and edge alignment such as F-22 and F-35.
But in no way does it provide the all-round stealth of a fifth-generation fighter. It seems that the radar cross-section of the current type is like Eurofighter, which will be much better with further upgrades during development. Weapons are carried in 6 points under the wings and 4 points under the body, all of which are external pylons. Even if it goes to the battlefield in the most viable form, unarmed, it is an important sensor platform for other less capable fighters.
In terms of ability to fill gaps F16 and F35. It will also be cheaper and less expensive than Lightning, which in the US and other countries will be a major concern in terms of maintenance costs for exports and is an attractive option for foreign customers. Introduce the Philippines and even Iraq and replace the fourth generation jets of Europe and Russia with better operational characteristics.
They are users of the 50-FA and 16-F or 5-F, which the hawk is designed to replace, has much better mobility than the 16-F, is semi-radar evasive, and has advanced weapons such as the Durasta active-range radar missile and cruise missile. Made by MBDA and IRIS-T Infrared Illustrator by Dehl. Block 2 weapons are also types of satellite, laser, small diameter guided bombs.
Probably the maximum cargo is 7.7 tons and the maximum take-off weight is 25.6 tons (between F-35 and F-16). The maximum speed is 2,253 kilometers per hour (about Mach 1.83) and the range is 2,900 kilometers. This is scientific information and it remains to be seen how it works in the experiment. Especially the combat radius, which will be much less (about 725 km). It is also thought to be operational around 2026. Work on the fifth generation model begins with the inner vestibule.


The Falcon has two General Electric F414 engines with a maximum afterburner thrust of  22,000 each. No changes have been made to reduce radar reflection or thermal radiation, and it is exactly the same as the Grauler, Swift Hornet and Green Ney engine. In 2016, KIA agreed with the United States to supply 240 engines plus spare parts. This engine will be assembled and supported by the Korean company Hanoi. Active electronic reconnaissance radar was also developed by Hanova in collaboration with Elbit System Israel. The land toll tracking system and collision avoidance are also provided by Albit. Hanua IRST (Infrared Detection Camera) builds the nose based on Leonardo’s SkyWard design and develops electronic warfare equipment and electro-optical anti-targeting.
Korea’s LUG Nex1 is also developing an integrated electronic warfare suite that includes alarms, jammers and dust throwers. The computer also develops flight control, mission management and a special low-profile display that utilizes BAE guided wave visual technology. In total, 65% of the fighters are domestically produced. So far, 12,000 people have been employed in the KF-21 project, and mass production will create 10,000 new jobs.
Shaheen will make its first flight among the world’s heaviest jets, developing in Turkey, Japan, Europe, Britain and India. Due to the fact that KIA gave up some advanced capabilities in order to be ready sooner, and from the dream of the fifth generation of multi-purpose, it achieved a semi-stealth air superiority hunt.

Against the enemy

Shahin will play an important role in enhancing Seoul’s defense. With the arrival of the air force, it will be significantly strengthened against China, and North Korea, meanwhile, has no place to pay attention. Even now, the difference in air power with its northern neighbor is incomparable. Pyongyang’s most modern fighter is a relatively small number of MiG-29s late in the Cold War. While Seoul has 12 Lightning, 60 F15Ks (one of the best Eagle strikes) and 180 18-Fs, 134 of which are being upgraded to F-16Vs, the F-35B will also fly for helicopter carriers. This devastating power goes far beyond that. Pyongyang can deal with a large arsenal of mobile missiles and Rely on his artillery. It also has microbial and chemical weapons that temporarily inactivate air bases by contaminating them. It also has a nuclear arsenal, but its use means reaching an irreversible point. In terms of defense, it has a large number of cannons and surface-to-air missiles that must be suppressed in a large-scale war. In contrast, the hand of the South Korean Air Force is wide open. The advanced AWACS 7-E and the 800-RC radar signal pickup aircraft provide early warning, air control and surveillance capabilities, and support falcons and other fighters to provide timely information on air, land and sea threats. Bring. Pyongyang has nothing to say in the sky, so Block 2 with offensive capability will be especially important for Seoul.
Given that the F35 is aggressive and lacks air superiority, its Block 1 will be a complement to China. In air combat mode, it has 4 prose missiles with a range of 300 km in semi-buried bases under the fuselage, which reduces radar reflection. Under the wings, the meteor carries more or six IRIS-T missiles, the main weapon of which is close combat and designed to have little radar reflection.
21 – KF, with the support of supersensitivity such as Lightning or AWACS, easily rivals any Chinese wrestler except 20-1. Recently, Taiwan said that with the information gathered by AWACS from 20-J flights, it had concluded that the 167-F could be defeated by AMRAAM-D missiles with AWACS support.