LaurencePotgieter September 14, 2016 01:57 AM costs how much to government defense departments, using taxpayer money, instead of looking after the people? what would the voters want, fighter jets (and trainers in this case) or better infrastructure? manufacturing weapons of war for billions is no longer defensible, no pun intended! Deres September 14, 2016 04:13 AM I am a bit surprise that they say loudkly it is an inexpensive design ... The double tail and the complex fuselage retracting landing gear are not the less expensive solutions. It seems they mainly choose to use the F-18 aerodynamic design. Bob September 14, 2016 09:45 AM Could they put some smaller wheels on it? jerryd September 14, 2016 02:02 PM F18s cost less than the stated price. If they can't build them for under $10mm each, they need to find someone who can. I think it's time to give say 10 pilots and 10 engineers $10mm to build a trainer plus the engine. More for larger but aircraft is not rocket science and we can't afford the parasites anymore as big defense corporations only has driving up the price in mind. Pilots that have to do the missions using say 4 teams for each aircraft type build theirs and have a fly off. It would cost 20% of the scam going on now and have more and better planes. DaleBarclay September 14, 2016 05:39 PM A lot depends on how much off the shelf items you can use in the design. We need cheap and nasty planes to defend ourselves and to train pilots. As long as Boeing and Saab keep their feet on the ground this should be ok. You do not need all the high tech gear stuffed into a trainer. It is to teach someone how to fly, not fight at this time in their training. Simulators can teach a pilot how to use the high tech gear. The F-5 was the combat version of the T-38. M.Power September 14, 2016 11:52 PM If this contract is worth potentially "hundreds of billions", and Boeing is aiming to build 350, then each plane is going to cost roughly $800 million!!!!! Are you out of your !$&@?!! minds!!! Can the Federal Reserve afford that much paper and ink to cover this procurement?!! yawood September 15, 2016 03:42 AM @M.Power - A good percentage of that "hundreds of billions" will be used to support the aircraft with spares, maintenance, ground support etc over the life of the aircraft (i.e. cradle to grave). You cannot simply take that figure and divide by the number of aircraft to get a per unit build cost (unless you see that as a per unit cost over the next twenty or thirty years). Somewhat like leasing a car, where it covers not only the purchase price of the vehicle but also the scheduled maintenance, fuel and other running costs and some replacement parts like tyres etc. guzmanchinky September 16, 2016 02:36 PM Oooh, good looking plane. StWils September 17, 2016 02:20 PM So, for the most part we have heard from people who do not know Jack about defense or complex system developement and also from a few who imagine that not having modern forces is a good thing. Modernizing all Defense & Intelligence community systems, equipment, practices, & tools is an ongoing and vital part of protecting our society. Not doing so is extraordinarily stupid. Literally Trump sized Stupid.I would like to know if and or, how well the basic aircraft can also be "droned" to achieve a third basic path for usage? During one of Israels war with the PLO they attacked up the Bekaa river valley using US target drone aircraft as the leading edge of the attack. The drones emitted an electronic signature that intentionally "looked like" either Israeli F15s or 16s which prompted the Soviet supplied air defense radars to light up. Actual Israeli fighters followed about ten miles back, noted the radars locations and then obliterated them and their missile launchers. Very successful, and very much an indication of future tactics. LaurencePotgieter September 18, 2016 01:40 PM StWils while your comment has merit from a point of view of our current capitalist (and other very flawed systems) world, it nevertheless originates from the old combative confrontational model. Here at Gizmag, notice how they allow free debate to completely alternative thinkers - in fact many articles are about green initiatives illustrate this a bit. All readers of Gizmag (i chuckle here at myself refusing to use the name "new atlas", it sucks) love fast bikes, cars, planes. Those new Russian SU's are really something: so do not think that we are primitive hippies. Just hippies crying about extremely skewed expenditure of massive government money, which you, the taxpayer, must fork out. I must gently enquire whether you defend such expenditure because that industry provides your employment, directly or indirectly? I am not suggesting that Gizmag stops airing such articles. Their very wide scope is cause for praise.