Rapid Raptor package: U.S. Air Force’s new concept for deploying four F-22 stealth fighters in 24 hours

The U.S. Air Force’s 3rd Wing at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, has conceived a new rapid deployment concept that allows to deploy a package of F-22s and supporting logistics to any forward operating base and have the stealth fighter jet ready for combat operations within 24 hours of deploying with a small logistics footprint.

According to Air Force Magazine, the 3rd Wing has tested this new rapid deployment package during several exercises and, although it is scalable, it is built around four F-22 airframes and a single C-17 Globemaster cargo whose role is to carry materials, munitions and maintainers in theater.

In a recent interview with Daily Report, Pacific Air Forces Commander Gen. Hawk Carlisle said that the Rapid Raptor Package denies the enemy the ability to locate the F-22s for an extended period by preventing adversaries from knowing from which airbases the only U.S. 5th generation fighter plane launch.

The agility of the new deployment package denies a potential adversary the ability to locate the F-22s for an extended period and make the precious assets less targetable.

It must be noticed that, even if such kind of deployment could be completed fairly easily, quickly and possibly in a stealthy manner, it involves just two pairs of Raptors, a ridiculous amount even for a small scale operation.

Few days ago, U.S. F-22 stealth fighter pilot taunted Iranian F-4 Phantom combat planes over the Persian Gulf.


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About David Cenciotti
David Cenciotti is a journalist based in Rome, Italy. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviationist”, one of the world’s most famous and read military aviation blogs. Since 1996, he has written for major worldwide magazines, including Air Forces Monthly, Combat Aircraft, and many others, covering aviation, defense, war, industry, intelligence, crime and cyberwar. He has reported from the U.S., Europe, Australia and Syria, and flown several combat planes with different air forces. He is a former 2nd Lt. of the Italian Air Force, a private pilot and a graduate in Computer Engineering. He has written five books and contributed to many more ones.


  1. Four F-22s wouldn’t do much, but why stop with just one flight? You could scatter several groups into the area quickly, and coordinate operations between them. That would give you more time to stay hidden because you wouldn’t have them all in one location. It adds complexity to the operations, but it aids survival.

    • Exactly! It’s rather frightening to consider that anybody would think that just because they only used one C-17 and four Raptors for the test that somehow that’s a physically bound limit or something.

  2. I actually like the F-35 better than the Raptor. Although my only complaint about the F-35 is that she does not have thrust vectoring.

  3. Four F22s in the AO is a lot betterthan waiting for a larger force to arrive, which may be too late in some instances. Against a squadron of non-stealthy aircraft, four may be good odss for the F22s.

  4. The F22Raptor is into today time the #1 jet fighter of jet fighter. Tho the competition is good!! There some state of the art tech on our jet fighter that are not found on our adversaries. that includes advance radar technology are engines or design differently with situation awareness surrounding the plane. the jet fighter comes with a lot of classified information.And if you think this is hot!! the next jet fighter that being put together. Well, Can you imagine! You better be glad you are living in this country. U.S.A.

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