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Korea Aerospace shares big plans for KF-21 fighter jet

KAI vice president and head of international business department JaeHong Jake Kim.

Korea Aerospace Industries has exhibited its sleek new KF-21 fighter jet at the Avalon Airshow.

Korea Aerospace Industries has exhibited its sleek new KF-21 fighter jet at the Avalon Airshow.

The single and double seat variant fighter was displayed beside a KAI Light Armed Helicopter and a FA-50 light combat jet at the event on 28 February.

KAI has eight prototypes of the KF-21 with a total of six flying prototypes, including one which flew a 30-minute test flight on February 20 this year. The company reported it has successfully broken the sound barrier with the aircraft.

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KAI vice-president and head of international business department JaeHong Jake Kim said the KF-21 will feature air-to-air missiles, air-to-ground munitions, and a Gatling-type 20mm machine gun.

There are also plans to combine AI, verbal communication, and teaming with unmanned vehicles.

“This kind of concept is not mature, but the concept should be two-seater piloted jet with four unmanned aircraft,” said Kim.

“The design can be easily turned into an export version. The beauty of this aircraft is that we have a one-seater and two-seater aircraft.”

The aircraft is expected to replace the Republic of Korea Air Force fleet of F-4E Phantom II and F-5E, F Tiger II aircraft.

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