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Re: F-35 Lightning II in Europa (Joint Strike Fighter)

Verfasst: 09. Aug 2015, 22:05
von theoderich
F-35 wird von italienischer KC-767A betankt (7. August 2015)


Als erster ausländischer Tanker hat eine italienische KC-767A Versuche mit der Lightning II durchgeführt.

Wie das JSF-Programmbüro nun mitteilte fanden die ersten Kontakte am 29. Juli in der Nähe der Edwards AFB in Kalifornien statt. Dafür kam einer der Tanker aus Pratica di Mare in die USA. Insgesamt wurden bei bisher 25 Kontakten mit dem Ausleger rund 7250 kg Kraftstoff übertragen.

Die Versuche werden noch bis Ende August laufen, so Lockheed Martin.

P.S.: Das ist mit der F-35B bestimmt nicht mehr möglich (bzw. nur nach aufwändigen Vorbereitungen):

Re: F-35 Lightning II in Europa (Joint Strike Fighter)

Verfasst: 12. Aug 2015, 15:14
von Rabe
Heutige schlagzeilen in einigen US medien:

F-35 might not meet performance standards of CF-18s, says U.S. think-tank

A U.S. defence and foreign affairs think-tank released a comprehensive report Tuesday suggesting the oft-maligned F-35 jet might not meet the performance standards of existing fighter planes, including Canada's CF-18s.

The National Security Network, a non-profit foreign policy group based in Washington, D.C., is the latest organization to raise questions about the stealth fighter program, which is over budget and behind schedule in the U.S.

Other organizations, including the Rand Corp., have studied the troubled program, but much of the analysis has revolved around the enormous cost and some of the technical snags, such as software, that have held up development. There have also been simulations that have compared the F-35 to potential competitors.

One of the key features of the latest report is its comparison of F-35 operational capabilities with the jets it is intended to replace, including the F-16, F-18 and A-10. In each case, the stealth fighter comes up short.

The group urges the Obama administration to do a "serious" reassessment of the program and determine whether there are alternatives available.

"Whether this opportunity to seriously reassess DOD’s commitment to the F-35 will be seized remains to be seen," the report said. "But, by staying fully committed to the F-35 program, the United States is investing unprecedented resources in the wrong aircraft, at the wrong time, for the wrong reasons."

A spokeswoman for Lockheed Martin, the plane's U.S. manufacturer, defended the project, saying the Pentagon's head of the program has stated there are no "show stopper" technical issues that prevent the warplane from being fielded.

Re: F-35 Lightning II in Europa (Joint Strike Fighter)

Verfasst: 28. Aug 2015, 13:41
von theoderich
Erste F-35A für Norwegen komplettiert


Im Werk Fort Worth hat die erste Lightning II für die königlich norwegischen Luftstreitkräfte die Endmontagehalle verlassen.

Das als AM-1 bezeichnete Flugzeug erhält derzeit seine Stealth-Beschichtung und wird lackiert, bevor die Versuche mit dem Kraftstoffsystem und weitere Bodentests anstehen. Die Lieferung soll noch in diesem Jahr erfolgen. Ziel ist dabei die Luke AFB in Arizona, wo die F-35A für Ausbildungszwecke verwendet wird.

Laut Lockheed Martin ist auch die AM-2 bereits im Lackierbereich. Die Flugzeuge mit den Serienkennungen AM-3 und AM-4 sind in der Endmontage und sollen im September ihre Tragflächen erhalten.

Re: F-35 Lightning II in Europa (Joint Strike Fighter)

Verfasst: 22. Sep 2015, 12:40
von theoderich
Norway, Australia Team To Upgrade Missile for F-35

Norway and Australia have minted a deal to develop a new seeker capability for the Joint Strike Missile, a core weapon planned for integration onto Norway's F-35.

Under the Sept. 15 agreement, Australia will finance the development of a new RF-seeking capability, which will enable the missile to locate targets based on electronic signature. BAE Australia will develop and integrate the capability, according to a Sept. 21 statement from Norway's Ministry of Defense.

If Australia later decides to procure the JSM, developed by Norwegian company Kongsberg Defence Systems, Norway and Australia will share the cost of integrating the JSM on the F-35.

The new seeker will provide JSM dual-seeker capability, which enables the missile to operate in all weather conditions, Executive Vice President of Kongsberg Group and President of KDS Harald Ånnestad told Defense News on Monday.

This marks the first time another nation has discussed the possibility of covering some of the costs related to the JSM, the Sept. 21 statement reads.

The current seeker being developed for the missile is based on a technology known as "imaging infra red" that enables the missile to detect and identify targets based on heat signature, according to the statement.

JSM will be integrated on Norway's F-35 in the first phase of follow-on development in the 2022-2024 time frame.

Re: F-35 Lightning II in Europa (Joint Strike Fighter)

Verfasst: 20. Okt 2015, 12:25
von JetSpotter
Zumindest Kanada dürfte sich jetzt endgültig gegen die F-35 Krücke entschieden haben.

http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/canada- ... -1.3235791

Ob europäische Länder dieser Entscheidung folgen werden? Ich denke da etwa an Belgien und Dänemark

Re: F-35 Lightning II in Europa (Joint Strike Fighter)

Verfasst: 16. Nov 2015, 18:10
von theoderich
Joint Strike Missile starts flight test programme



Kongsberg's Joint Strike Missile (JSM) has successfully completed a first flight test on the Utah Test and Training Range in the United States.

Leveraging technology and experience accrued from Kongsberg's previous development of the Nytt Sjømålsmissile/Naval Strike Missile anti-ship missile, JSM has been conceived as a low-observable, air-launched precision strike weapon designed for integration and internal carriage on board the F-35A and F-35C variants of the Lockheed Martin Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter (JSF).

Integration of JSM into JSF is planned as part of the Block 4A/4B update, due in service in the 2022-2024 timeframe; this would enable the RNoAF's F-35 fleet to achieve full operational capability in 2025.

Kongsberg is currently being funded by the Norwegian government to complete JSM development, prepare the system for JSF integration, and produce pre-production missiles in support of flight testing and qualification. The JSM flight test programme started early 2015 with a series of F-16 captive carry tests. Five flight tests, introducing increasing levels of complexity, are planned.

The first flight test was performed on 28 October. According to Kongsberg, the missile was launched at an altitude of 6,700 m (22,000 ft) from an Edwards Air Force-based F-16. No details of the flight profile or test duration have been released, although a company statement said that the missile executed "a number of challenging flight manoeuvres" and verified "several critical capabilities beyond the scope of the test".

Re: F-35 Lightning II in Europa (Joint Strike Fighter)

Verfasst: 08. Dez 2015, 12:54
von theoderich
Consegnato il primo JSF assemblato in Italia


Re: F-35 Lightning II in Europa (Joint Strike Fighter)

Verfasst: 02. Jan 2016, 16:43
von theoderich
OSBORNE Tony: Netherlands Preparing For F-35 Introduction , in: Aviation Week & Space Technology, 12/7/2015

"We need to be suitable to operate in a modern agile and ever-changing environment," Gen. Alexander Schnitger, commander of the Royal Netherlands Air Force (RNLAF), tells Aviation Week.

The aircraft is arriving at a difficult time, however. The F-35's operating and procurement costs do not necessarily fit well with a new age of fiscal austerity. Since the global economic crisis, Dutch ministers have been aggressive in slicing the defense budget. Only in recent months, faced with an increasingly aggressive Russia, has money been flowing back in.

The Netherlands was a 2002 signatory to the JSF program, with the aim of purchasing 85 F-35s to replace its F-16s. In 2009, the Dutch defense ministry ordered two F-35As to support the operational test and evaluation program. However, ministers had not formally settled on a decision to buy the aircraft. It was not until September 2013 that they officially announced the F-35's selection. But the number of aircraft was greatly reduced, with the budget allowing for just 37 aircraft, eight of which were ordered in March.

The Dutch aircraft will be assembled at the Cameri final assembly and checkout facility in Italy.

After accounting for aircraft out for maintenance, overseas training duties and the defense of Dutch airspace, the RNLAF expects it will be able to send only four F-35s on operational deployments. Furthermore, these will be limited in terms of time and scope--a dramatic change for an air force usually relied upon by its NATO allies to punch above its weight in support of coalition air operations.

Schnitger says that 37 aircraft was the maximum number acceptable to ministers at the time, but he expects the number to rise, albeit not in the short term.

"Behind the number 37, I tell my people, there is not a period, but a comma," explains Schnitger. "The security situation in Europe is changing, [defense] budgets are recovering and every day we take a hard look at our [projected] needs five, 10, 20 years from now," he adds.

The two operational aircraft are currently being flown out of Edwards AFB, California, where they form part of the joint U.S.-led JSF operational test team.

With the RNLAF planning for the F-35's service entry in 2019, the Dutch team there has been accelerating testing with recent trials proving interoperability with the F-16, the KDC-10 refueling aircraft, navy vessels and joint tactical air controllers.

The F-16 and F-35 will be "operating side-by-side for quite a while," says Col. Albert De Smit, commander of the RNLAF detachment at Edwards. Part of the testing has been to understand and develop tactics for fourth- and fifth-generation fighters to work together more effectively.

"Analysis on the exchange of information is far from complete," adds De Smit. "But F-35 capabilities definitely enhance fourth-generation fighter effectiveness by providing increased situational awareness."

"In Europe, for a long time to come, we will be working with this mix [of] fourth-, fifth- and even third-[generation] aircraft and dwindling numbers of airframes and weapons," says Schnitger. "We have to make the most out of that construct."

Schnitger says the Netherlands will have to make its transition to the F-35 at a "fast and furious" pace, as the RNLAF cannot afford to operate both the F-16 and F-35 for an extended period of time. Some of the F-16s have high airframe hours and sustainment issues.

"It's unavoidable that there will be a slight dent in our abilities to sustain operations abroad, and that is what we have to accept," says Schnitger.

He points out that the pace of transition will allow the air force initial operating capability in 2020.

The air arm is also planning to deploy one of its F-35s, with support from an RNLAF Douglas KDC-10 tanker, to the Netherlands in the summer of 2016, to allow communities living near F-35 bases to experience the aircraft's noise profile. The air arm will use the opportunity to take noise and vibration measurements to support F-35 operations from hardened aircraft shelters.

The same aircraft is also set to make the F-35's international public debut at the air force's Open Days at Leeuwarden in June.

Having recently deployed the Boeing Small Diameter Bomb on the F-16, the RNLAF is also studying future weapon options for the F-35 and sees a requirement for a standoff air-to-ground weapon capability in the longer term.

But Schnitger says the air arm will have to wait to see which weapons become available in the upcoming block development cycles. "We know there are some European and American developments in these fields, and we are looking at all of them," he says.

The F-35 procurement has opened up other, more immediate, concerns regarding pilot training as well. In order to get the most operational capability out of the F-35, the RNLAF is transitioning to a 2:1 ratio of pilots to aircraft from 1:1. But the current budgets do not stretch to giving all of those pilots the annual flying hours they need to be combat-ready.

Commanders are looking at a number of options, including the amount of training that can be performed in the simulator and use of a companion training aircraft, downloading F-35 training software to a type that is cheaper to operate.

They are also considering how well the current training in the U.S.--using the T-38 Talons of the Euro-NATO Joint Jet Pilot Training--will prepare pilots for the fifth-generation fighter, given that the next-generation T-X trainer will not be operational until 2023.

"Simulation will be a big part of the training program for the pilots," says Schnitger. "Fighter pilots prefer to strap on a jet and not a simulator, but things are about to change, and they understand that. They are working with me to optimize what we have," he adds.

Two RNLAF students are in training at Lecce Galatina air base in southern Italy, where they will conduct advanced jet training on the Alenia Aermacchi M346 to see how that aircraft prepares them for the F-35.

The Netherlands is also in discussions with other European F-35 partners to lead a fighter weapons school exercise program, as well as to become a center for maintenance training for the jet. Closer ties with Italy could lead the Netherlands to make use of the Cameri maintenance, repair and overhaul center for heavy maintenance of the fleet, along with taking advantage of Italian airspace for training.

"Pooling and sharing in Europe is very important," says Schnitger. "Doing it based on bilateral or trilateral deals is much more effective than trying to lump together a large number of countries."

Neighboring Belgium, in particular, is considered a critical defense partner. Schnitger says the existing defense relationship could be strengthened if Brussels selected the F-35 as well.

"It is the best aircraft they can buy," says Schnitger. "I am sure that the decision-makers in Belgium know that they have an ally to the north of them, willing to have discussions on the integration between the two air forces.

"However, you could turn it around and say that the French candidate, the Rafale, is the same, so it is not a decision breaker [make or break]," he added.

The two governments are currently discussing a cross-border treaty that will allow the air forces to share the air policing role over both countries, potentially halving the burden of quick- reaction alert operations and freeing up flying hours. Such a system could be operational in 2017.

Re: F-35 Lightning II in Europa (Joint Strike Fighter)

Verfasst: 20. Jan 2016, 18:37
von theoderich
Economic worries threaten defense

Pressure on the economy as a result of low oil prices, combined with a weak currency that makes the jets much more expensive in US dollars, has sparked new concern over military spending. Defense Minister Ine Eriksen Søreide of the Conservative Party has wanted to halt the chronic “under-funding” of the military and is currently working hard on a long-term plan for defense that’s due this spring. She has received what military brass call “modest” proposals for a military of the future, and her response will be forwarded to Parliament.

Søreide is also under pressure from the US to contribute more to the fight against Islamic extremist group IS but the government won’t be sending any of its F16 jets to join the fight. Instead, Søreide confirmed this week, Norway will extend its training program for Iraqi forces in Northern Iraq. Further military contributions to the fight against IS in Iraq and Syria “remain up for evaluation and won’t be ruled out,” said Søreide as she delivered an overview of international operations in 2016 to Parliament.

Long-term dilemma

Longer-term plans for Norway’s defense remain highest on the military agenda, and present the biggest dilemma. The goal, wrote newspaper Dagens Næringsliv (DN) on Tuesday, is to have defense forces that no longer are underfunded but also can be restructured and open to new necessary ventures. That’s becoming increasingly difficult given Norway’s new economic realities with less oil money flowing into state coffers at a time of rising unemployment and pressure on the social welfare state from expanding ranks of retirees and refugees.

The defense establishment naturally enough wants to maintain a first-line-of-defense strategy that would allow Norwegian forces to defend Norway at least for several days before NATO troops arrive to help. The alternative is giving up on that, like Denmark has done, and relying more heavily on NATO in return for active participation in NATO operations. Such a situation, wrote DN, implies cutting the number of F35s, from 52 to perhaps 42, reducing investment in new submarines and tanks and making many other cuts as well, to save money on operations. And DN noted that Norway’s geographic position is entirely different from Denmark’s, where held could roll in from bordering allies. Norway, in contrast, shares a border with Russia in the far north and with Sweden, which is not a member of NATO.

“The last think I want is a reduction in the (number of) F35,” Defense Chief and Admiral Haakon Bruun-Hansen declared in an annual address Monday night. He noted, however, that he well understood that the recommendations he presented last year “are politically demanding.” He said he also understood that “the dilemma (over military spending) is more demanding today than it was six months ago, because of the economic situation in Norway and the outlook for the Norwegian economy.”

Major financial boost needed

That doesn’t change the “seriousness” of the military’s situation, he cautioned. A major financial boost is needed if the military is to carry out its duties in the face of new security and political challenges. If funding for the military is lower than that recommended by his panel of experts, it will result in a decline of defense capability.

“The defense minister has said it and I have claimed it for several years: The military is under-financed in accordance with the current long-term plan,” Bruun-Hansen said. Efforts to maintain various military activity and international operations have come at the expense of preparedness, he claimed, and that’s no longer acceptable “in my opinion.” He favours cutting back on international operations in order to boost preparedness at home.

It will ultimately be up to the government and parliament to decide what kind of military Norway will have: one capable of defending the nation or one that relies on support for NATO to do so. For a country with a former prime minister as new NATO boss, it’s a daunting prospect.

Newspaper Aftenposten reported that both the Conservatives and Labour resist any cuts in the number of F35s ordered, prompting critics to predict the F35s will then force massive cuts in other areas of defense because of their sheer expense. That could leave Norway with a relatively strong air force, but weak army and naval operations.

    newsinenglish.no/Nina Berglund

F-35 kampfly, fregatter og fellesskapets forsvar

Brief aan de Tweede Kamer Monitoring Vervanging F-16 / Verwerving F-35

Re: F-35 Lightning II in Europa (Joint Strike Fighter)

Verfasst: 25. Jan 2016, 19:39
von theoderich
Despite Decades of Stealth, Sticking Points Bedevil F-35 Jet (VIDEO)

By the time the F-35 program is fully up and running — with an American fleet of more than 2,400 planes planned by the late 2030s — projected total costs will exceed $1 trillion. One billion dollars will be needed just to pay for the highly advanced pilot helmets, running to $400,000 apiece. And though champions of the supersonic F-35 hail it as the ultimate sky fighter for the 21st century, skeptics ask if it is worth all the money and effort, or even if it will prove as effective in its mission as David’s little stone was in its day.

To put it mildly, the Joint Strike Fighter is a complex piece of machinery. History suggests that the more intricate a device is, the more ways there are for things to go wrong. Lt. Gen. Christopher C. Bogdan, the Air Force officer in charge of F-35 development, stands firmly by the program, but he acknowledged to Retro Report that the plane’s initial design may have been overambitious and thus trouble prone.

Red flags went up even before the Pentagon awarded the contract to Lockheed Martin in October 2001. The Government Accountability Office, Congress’s research arm then known as the General Accounting Office, cautioned that assorted technological problems raised the specter of cost overruns, performance failures and production delays. All those fears were borne out. The project is seven years behind schedule, costs have soared, and eyebrows arched higher after a prototype was outmaneuvered by an older F-16 in a mock dogfight early last year.

Lockheed Martin and the F-35’s supporters within the military respond that the whole point of the stealth technology is to enable pilots to slip through enemy defenses undetected, fire on ground targets and make a getaway before the other side can figure out what happened. No fuss, no muss — and certainly no dogfight. But, as usual whenever a better mouse comes along, someone is bound to devise a better mousetrap. Improved radar and infrared sensors, some experts say, may make these planes not quite as clandestine as hoped for.

Not that anyone ever claimed stealth engineering was equivalent to an invisibility cloak out of “Harry Potter.” “The reality is that there’s no such thing as absolute stealth,” Gen. Norton A. Schwartz, a former Air Force chief of staff who retired in 2012, told Retro Report. That much was made painfully clear in 1999 when Serbian ground fire brought down an F-117 Nighthawk, an American stealth fighter. It did not appear to be a lucky shot. The plane had been spotted.

The real objective is not invisibility but minimizing a plane’s footprint in the sky — its radar cross section — so that it can seem no bigger to monitoring systems than, say, a golf ball. The plane is coated with nonmetallic materials that absorb radar waves. Smooth curves and other design elements can also redirect those waves. Essential features that might be dead giveaways, like the weaponry, are tucked inside the aircraft. Engines are cooled to reduce their thermal signature.

As the video points out, stealth technology entered public consciousness at the start of the 1980s. Perhaps no plane became more instantly recognizable than the B-2 Spirit, a sleek, dark and tail-less bomber that looked like something Batman might have at the ready. The F-35 is the most recent addition to the United States fleet, and it is intended principally to attack targets on the ground, not to engage in air-to-air combat.

It breaks with the past by meeting the requirements of three military branches — the Air Force, Navy and Marines — each of which traditionally developed its own planes. Three in one. Swiss Army knife. Jack-of-all-trades. These are some of the labels attached to the F-35.

As much as 80 percent of its parts are the same for all three services, including engines, fuselage, weapons and supersonic capability. Each branch, however, will have its own variant: a conventional takeoff and landing version for the Air Force, a model that can perform short takeoffs and landings on Navy aircraft carriers, and a helicopter-like design that makes possible the vertical landings desired by the Marines.

Having the services share most of the technology was meant to be a big money saver. But harsh realities intruded, in part because it is complicated, not to mention expensive, to give each branch what it wants. To help defray expenses, the United States has signed up eight other countries as paying partners. But at least one of them, Canada, may be rethinking its commitment. The recently elected prime minister, Justin Trudeau, promised during his campaign to pull out of the program, though he has yet to act on that pledge. A Canadian withdrawal, still not a certainty, would increase the costs for everyone else.

Budgetary worries are such that Senator John McCain, Republican of Arizona and chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, has dismissed the plan for 2,400 planes as unrealistic. “The number they are now quoting — there’s just not going to be that many,” Mr. McCain said in late October.

For others, there is also the fact that the F-35, as an all-purpose workhorse, is intended to replace a flock of warplanes that are aging but have proved worthy, including the F-16, the A-10 attack plane and the AV-8B Harrier. The plan to retire the A-10 in particular is being delayed for at least a year, in good measure because of resistance in Congress.

Others have their own doubts about putting the old-timers out to pasture. They include War Is Boring, a website that often casts a jaundiced eye on military decisions. Skeptical about the F-35’s capabilities, it has suggested that it is a mistake for the Pentagon to bet pretty much everything on this one fighter.

Re: F-35 Lightning II in Europa (Joint Strike Fighter)

Verfasst: 07. Feb 2016, 13:34
von theoderich

Re: F-35 Lightning II in Europa (Joint Strike Fighter)

Verfasst: 09. Feb 2016, 21:39
von theoderich

Re: F-35 Lightning II in Europa (Joint Strike Fighter)

Verfasst: 28. Feb 2016, 01:02
von Rabe
Interview mit Ward Carroll, editor-in-chief von 'We are the Mighty' am Freitag 26 02 an SXM,
kanal 124 im Press Pool mit Julie Mason.
Carroll, ehemaliger F-14 einsatzpilot zum F-35:
-zu teuer, zu spaet, derzeitiger stueckpreis wie F-22, kann aber nichts,
der helm mit multi-dispaly kosted US$ 500 000 hat kinderkrankheiten.
Sagt staaten die derzeit die F-18 benutzen
"should double down on their used F-18's and will be doing fine until something better comes along".

Re: F-35 Lightning II in Europa (Joint Strike Fighter)

Verfasst: 29. Mär 2016, 11:50
von theoderich
F-35 Joint Strike Fighter:

Preliminary Observations on Program Progress

GAO-16-489T: Published: Mar 23, 2016. Publicly Released: Mar 23, 2016.

Update on the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) Program and the Fiscal Year 2017 Budget Request

Wednesday, March 23, 2016 - 10:30am

    VI Risk & Challenges

    Although improving, the Program is not without risks and challenges. Currently, our most significant technical concern is the development and integration of mission systems software.

    The aircraft has approximately eight million lines of code, with another 16 million lines of code on the off-board systems. This is an order of magnitude greater than any other aircraft in the world and represents a complex, sometimes tricky, and often frustrating element in the program. Several years ago the program instilled discipline in the way software is developed, lab tested, flight tested, measured and controlled by the program office. This has produced much better and more predictable results over the past two years. However, both the fielded Block 3i software and the 3F software in flight test are not as stable as they need to be to support our warfighters. We are experiencing instability in the sensors - particularly the radar – leading it to shut off and “reboot” in flight. Currently, this problem occurs about once every four hours of flying, and we expect to improve this to once every eight to ten hours of flying. We believe we have identified the root cause of these stability problems to be the timing of software messages from the sensors to the main F-35 fusion computer, and we have tested solutions in the lab environment. We will be flight testing these fixes in the March-April timeframe. If the fixes are successful, we will add them to a new version of 3i software and field that in time for USAF IOC.

    The final software version, Block 3F, has the most software risk facing the program for a number of reasons. First, 3F testing started later than planned because we had to spend more time fixing Block 2B and 3i software. Second, 3F has the same stability issues as Block 3i as described above. Third, the Block 3F software must take information from other sources, such as other non-F-35 aircraft, satellites, and ground stations and fuse this information with F-35 information, giving the pilot a complete and accurate picture of the battlespace. Additionally, the remaining flight loads, buffet, and weapons delivery accuracy flight testing needs to be accomplished. We estimate there is about four months of risk to this schedule, placing full 3F capability to the warfighters in the late fall of 2017.

    The next version of ALIS, version 2.0.2, which includes new capabilities to support USAF IOC, also has some schedule risk. This version of ALIS combines the management of F135 engine maintenance within ALIS and tracks all the life-limited parts on each and every F-35 aircraft. The development of these capabilities is proving to be difficult because they require integration with Lockheed Martin’s and Pratt & Whitney’s Enterprise Resource Planning systems, or the “back end” of ALIS.

Software failures, cyber vulnerability still plague F-35

"The limited and incomplete F-35 cyber-security testing accomplished to date has … revealed deficiencies that cannot be ignored," Michael Gilmore, the director of combat testing, said in a prepared statement for a hearing by the House Armed Services subcommittee on tactical air and land forces. Gilmore's testimony summarises earlier reports that detail the risks of concurrent development and production of weapon systems.

Furthermore, the mission systems software supporting the aircraft's Northrop Grumman AN/APG-81 AESA radar is not stable enough for combat, according to Gilmore's testimony. The radar has to be restarted once every four hours of flying time, the statement said. The US Air Force (USAF) has said that fixing this issue remains its main concern before it can allow its jets to deploy in combat.

Pentagon F-35 programme manager USAF Lieutenant General Christopher Bogdan, who also testified before the subcommittee, acknowledged that problems with mission system software remain a serious difficulty. "Our most significant technical concern is the development and integration of mission systems software," he said. Each aircraft is supported by some 8 million lines of code, he added.

Sean Stackley, assistant secretary of the US Navy (USN), concurred with Gilmore and Lt Gen Bogdan in his written testimony, stating that software stability during flight test was a problem. In addition, cracking in the wings of the navy's F-35C carrier variant after too few flight hours remains a problem, according to Stackley.

Re: F-35 Lightning II in Europa (Joint Strike Fighter)

Verfasst: 25. Apr 2016, 11:20
von theoderich
Spanish Navy struggling to fund new aircraft buys

With the McDonnell Douglas/BAE VA.2 (EAV-8B Harrier II/Plus) jump jets used aboard the country's aircraft carrier Juan Carlos I due to be phased out between 2025 and 2027, the "only option open to us" as a replacement is the Lockheed Martin F-35, according to Admiral Jaime Muñoz-Delgado Diaz del Rio. "But because we were not a member from the start, that signifies having to pay more for it," he said.

One option being discussed within the navy would be to undertake a joint acquisition with the Spanish Air Force. However, the initial reaction from the air force was that "they are not convinced", he said. Adm Muñoz-Delgado added hoped to begin more detailed talks with them soon on a possible joint purchase.

DOT&E FY2015 Annual Report

Kritik an Lockheed Martin F-35

Auf diesmal insgesamt 48 Seiten listet Gilmore eine ganze Reihe von Mängeln auf. So sind alle F-35-Versionen immer noch bei den Lastvielfachen eingeschränkt, so lange der Tank voll ist. Bei bestimmten Flugmanövern könnte es nämlich sonst zu einem fatalen Überdruck im System kommen. Ein weiterer Punkt ist die Überhitzung der Waffenschächte am Boden bei Außentemperaturen über 32 Grad Celsius und bei hohen Fluggeschwindigkeiten in niedrigen Flughöhen. Dann müssen die Klappen alle zehn Minuten kurz geöffnet werden, was sich mit Stealth-Eigenschaften natürlich nicht vereinbaren lässt.

Die Stabilität der Software ist weiterhin ein großes Thema. Problematisch ist unter anderem eine Asynchronität zwischen den Zentralrechnern und den Inputs der zahlreichen Sensoren. Das System wird dann „verstopft“, und es kommt zu Abstürzen. Die passieren auch bei den neuen Softwareversionen 3i und 3F etwa alle vier Stunden – doppelt so häufig wie bei aktuellen Einsatzmustern. Ein Sorgenkind bleibt die Wartungssoftware ALIS, die zahllose Daten des Flugzeugs verarbeitet und offenbar schon bei eigentlich unbedeutenden Diskrepanzen den Jet für nicht flugklar erklärt. Mit Software haben auch die Verzögerungen bei der Verification Simulation (VSim) zu tun. Sie wird für die komplexen Waffensimulationen benötigt, welche sich real kaum durchführen lassen. Im JSF-Programm stehen derzeit noch 419 Mängel zur Beseitigung an, räumte auch Generalleutnant Bogdan ein, „aber wir machen Fortschritte“, und 700 bis 800 Probleme habe man bereits gelöst.

Insgesamt gesehen müsse die F-35B des US Marine Corps mit der Block-2B-Software in einem realen Einsatz eine Feindberührung vermeiden, schreibt Michael Gilmore. In einem Gebiet mit gegnerischer Luftverteidigung sei die Maschine auf Unterstützung durch eigene Kräfte angewiesen, so die Testabteilung. Auch bei der Softwareversion Block 3i seien keine wesentlichen Verbesserungen zu erwarten. Dennoch ist es das Ziel des Joint Program Office, mit der F-35A als nächster Version möglichst im August die anfängliche Einsatzbereitschaft bei der US Air Force zu erreichen.