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Why was the Pratt & Whitney F100 never put on the F-14 Tomcat? The engine bays of jets like the F-15 and F-16 can accompany both the F100 and the GE F110. It would've been a quick solution to the underpowered and compressor stall-prone TF30 engine. So, why was the F100 never strapped onto the Tomcat?

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Near as I know, it very nearly was used in the F-14B variant of the Tomcat but ultimately was downselected against after the failure of the Convair XFV-12 aircraft, which would have used the a predecessor of the F100 engine to power it.

Ultimately, the Navy went with the GE F110 engine in the F-14B & D variants. Exactly why this decision was made in the 1980s is unknown. I suspect it was done, in part, because Navy Pentagon brass who flew the F-14As and had such a bad experience with the temperamental Pratt & Whitney TF-33 engines. They contrasted that with GE’s ability to produce good naval fighter engines; case in point was the F404-GE-400 in the newer F/A-18 Hornets.

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Pratt & Whitney got a contract for the F100-PW-100 and F401-PW-400 engines in 1970. The F401 was larger thrust with an extra stage in the compressor (on the fan shaft). When the F-14 was started, the F100 and F401 engines were not yet available so they used the TF30 in F-14A with the assumption that the F-14B with F401 would follow shortly. DOD cancelled the F401 leaving the F-14 with the TF-30 for many years. According to wikipedia (entry for Pratt & Whitney F401), "Due to costs and the reliability issues that dogged early F100s, the F401 was eventually cancelled in 1974". There were a number of aircraft the engine might have been used on, including the Navy F-16 (Vought proposal jointly with General Dynamics, the Navy opted to go with F-18 based on YF-17) and Rockwell XFV-12 in 1977.

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  • $\begingroup$ The F100-PW-100 was introduced in 1972, just 3 years after the F-14 was. So why exactly did they not quickly rush the F100 to the F-14? It had a bit less compressor stall issues, and could be a 2nd quick fix until better engines came along. The F-14A was in service until 2004 with VFA-211. That's a long time to not put better engines. $\endgroup$
    – JustACoder
    Dec 23, 2022 at 0:53

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