The FB-23 Medium Bomber

This proposal for a FB-23 medium bomber calls for an F-111 sized aircraft with comparable range, high speed, and stealth characteristics. The aircraft should be modelled closely on a greatly upsized version of the YF-23 with an electronic warfare variant, the EB-23, operating in the same role as the EF-111 Raven.

It is important to note that this design must incorporate a separation between the engines all the way to the end of the fuselage to allow for a large weapons bay, fuel, rear facing sensors and decoys. Admittedly some tapering or very slight slimming of the fuselage towards the engines, unlike in the graphic above, will improve aerodynamics.

In terms of sensors the aircraft must have an upgradable IRST system that has forward, rear, and side facing sensor in addition to a standard AESA radar.

Another requirement is that the aircraft's weapons bay be configured so that in addition to bombs the FB-23 will also carry self defence missiles that can be fired using high off-boresight targeting to strike at threats from the rear or any other quarter. Furthermore, the weapons bay will be set up to allow the aircraft to act as tanking platform, for operations near contested airspace, using a buddy-buddy system.

If possible the aircraft should also incorporate design features from the SU-34, which would require side-by-side seating to provide standing and floor space for the crew. Variable cycle engines will be used in later versions of the bomber.