Happy Friday, FighterSweep Fans! We all know what this means: another opportunity to admire the brilliant luster of Mach diamonds, have our senses delightfully singed, and go into the weekend with Eau de JP8 wafting through our memories. It is once again Burner Friday!

This week we’ve chosen to tantalize your eyeballs with a glorious photo of one of the oldest Lockheed-Martin F-22A Raptors in the fleet. Ship 10 has been serving proudly with the 422nd Test and Evaluation Squadron for its entire service life, helping to develop the tactics, techniques, and procedures fielded by operational Raptor squadrons today.

It’s fairly rare to see an F-22 departing Nellis Air Force Base in full afterburner, but it’s always a sight–and sound–to behold. I remember the first time I ever bore witness to the raw power the Raptor possesses, and my friends, if there were ever a thing that could be described as the sky tearing open, this would be it.

If you’re standing close enough to the beast as it launches, your pant legs ruffle, your sternum vibrates, and your breathing gets irregular because of the shockwaves. The jet is LOUD, and the noise of the two Pratty & Whitney F119 motors reverberates off of absolutely everything. Car alarms hoot and holler their approval as the most feared combat aircraft in the world takes to the sky in a menacing blaze of uncontainable awesome.

And, to illustrate our point, we bring you this video:

Have a fantastic weekend and we’ll catch you on the flip side!


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