The 20 Fastest Warplanes on Earth Today

The conflict between Russia and Ukraine continues to rage on, but recent developments could provide some advantage to Kyiv. Going into the summer months, pressure is being ramped up on the United States and NATO to supply modern warplanes to Ukraine. However, it is unclear how Moscow will respond to this deal, should it go through, as modern warplanes are a powerful tool for any conflict.

The world of military aviation has seen remarkable advancements since the advent of flight. Among the factors that define modern military planes, speed is an essential component. Considering the march of technology is ever forward, nations are constantly engaged in a race to develop and possess the most effective aircraft – whether by speed or armament. Today, we are taking a look at the fastest warplanes in service.

To determine the fastest warplanes in service, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed Modern Aircraft, Helicopters & Drones, a list compiled by Military Factory, an online database of military vehicles, aircraft, arms, and more. Military aircraft were ranked based on their top speed, and only those currently in service with a top speed of over 1,500 miles per hour, or nearly Mach 2, were considered. Supplemental information about the year entered service, crew, type, roles, and which nations employ these aircraft also came from Military Factory.

The Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-25 Foxbat ranks at the top of this list as a supersonic interceptor and reconnaissance aircraft that revolutionized the Soviet Union’s military aviation capabilities. Boasting a top speed of more than 2,100 mph, or Mach 2.8, the MiG-25 stands out as one of the fastest combat-ready aircraft in service. During the Cold War, it played a significant role in countering and challenging the superiority of American and NATO aircraft. (See every plane in Russia’s air force.)

Not to be outshined, the F-15 Eagle asserts its dominance as one of the fastest modern military planes currently in service. Developed as a powerful air superiority fighter, the F-15 is capable of reaching speeds of up to 1,875 mph, or Mach 2.4. This aircraft has proven versatile in its service of multiple air forces across the globe. (Conversely, this is the slowest airplane still in use by the U.S. military.)

As technology continues to evolve, it will be fascinating to observe how the quest for speed shapes the future of military aircraft design and performance and the world’s aerial conflict strategies. For now, here’s a look at the 20 fastest warplanes currently in service.

Click here to see the world’s fastest warplane.

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