Can I join the US Air Force?

Basic Eligibility Requirements:

Age and Parental Permission
You must be at least 18 (17 with your parents permission) but have not reached your 28th birthday (with no prior service)
Citizenship
You must be a born, naturalized, or otherwise legal citizen of the United States.
Education
You must have either a high school diploma OR a GED plus 15 college credits.
Disqualifiers
Drug use, alcohol abuse, other substance abuse, as well as law violations or convictions will prevent your enlistment.
Height and Weight Standards
You must meet the Air Force height and weight standards.
Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery scores
You must meet specific scoring requirements on the ASVAB test
Dependent Restrictions/Financial Eligibility
You are qualified if you are never married, and under the age of 23. If this is not the case, check here for more details.

A-10 To Be Kept "Indefinitely"

A-10 on a gun run
After years of trying to get rid of it, it looks like the Air Force finally has to face the truth - the A-10 is just too good at its job to get rid of!

The B-21 Finally Has An Official Name!

B-21 Raider
Announced back in February, the B-21 now has its official name, announced by the Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James today.

And that name is...

Video: Auto-GCAS Saves Pilot, F-16

Auto-GCAS, or Automatic Ground Collision Avoidance System, is a pretty impressive bit of technology, and this dramatic video of an F-16 jet saving the life of its pilot is a great example of it in action.

First, the video:

USAF Didn't Study A-10 Retirement Implications - GAO

An A-10 and its crew chief
The Government Accountability Office (GAO) issued a fairly scathing report about the Air Force's plans to retire the A-10, accusing the USAF of incomplete research about the cost savings and tactical implications of retiring the aircraft.

The overall tone of the GAO's report about the retirement of the A-10 is best summed up by this quote from the report's conclusion (emphasis mine):

Despite USAF IOC, F-35 Still Falls Short

F-35 flies in formation with F-16

Coming just a few days after the Air Force declared its F-35A cleared for limited operations, the Pentagon's top tester expressed doubt about the aircraft.

Awesome: R/C A-10 + Nerf Gun - Video!

On a list of awesome hobbies, remote control (or R/C) aircraft are pretty high up there. Combining an R/C A-10 with a Nerf gun and a small video camera has got to put this over the top, though.

F-35A Declared Operational

Yesterday, Tuesday, Aug. 2, the Air Force declared the F-35A had reached IOC - initial operational capability. This means that the Air Force can now send the Air Force's first F-35 squadron, the 34th Fighter Squadron from Hill Air Force Base, Utah, into combat operations anywhere in the world.

Video: First Firing of F-35 Gun Pod

F-35 with gun pod
Bad news about the F-35's combat capabilities, development, and its cost is nothing new. We've already reported on several bumps in the road for the fighter, including its dogfight with an F-16, potentially dangerous ejection seat, limited arsenal, and more!.

However, it's not all bad news - the F-35's stealthy external gun pod, which will be carried on the Marine Corp's F-35B and the Navy's F-35C, has finally been tested!

USAF Aircraft Aging: F-15, F-16 and A-10 Must Carry On

F-15E, A-10, F-16, and F-15C in formation
We've talked about the Air Force's looming financial difficulties before, but it looks like the USAF's aircraft fleet may get quite a bit older as well as smaller in the coming years.