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    F-35 Development and News Thread:

    Isos
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    Post  Isos on Sat Apr 27, 2019 11:21 am


    If you think the 200 you ordered were too expensive at 150 million US dollars each... then cancelling half of them and just buying 100 means the price for those 100 will go up dramatically and you might find yourself paying even more for much less....

    As long as it serves them to be less dependant on US by using f-35 tech in their own programs it is good, no matter of the price. Money goes around and will come back to them one day.
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    Post  Vladimir79 on Sat Apr 27, 2019 9:43 pm

    F-35 only had 50% availability in 2018

    WASHINGTON — Only about half of the F-35 fighter jets worldwide were ready to fly during an eight-month period in 2018, with the wait for spare parts keeping jets on the ground nearly 30 percent of the time, according to a new report by the U.S. Government Accountability Office.

    https://www.defensenews.com/air/2019/04/25/government-watchdog-finds-more-problems-with-f-35s-spare-parts-pipeline/
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    Post  GarryB on Sun Apr 28, 2019 5:15 am

    The Norwegians were saying that with a combination of the high cost of flight hours and serviceability issues they were having trouble keeping aircrew and ground crew trained in operating the aircraft... when it is too expensive to fly a lot it becomes hard to get hours on the jet to maintain competency.

    Read one place it is about $37,000 per hour to fly an F-35... so for each pilot flying a bare minimum of 150 hours a year that would be:

    5.5 million per pilot per year.... I think they have about 40 aircraft, so operational costs even assuming no ordinance is used would be 220 million per year...

    On the plus side this will really help them achieve their commitment to spend 2% of GDP by 2024...

    Wasn't there a commitment to get to 80% availability by the end of 2019?

    I am sure they will meet it because they have no problems fiddling numbers... Norwegian F-35s are just resting...
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    Post  George1 on Thu May 02, 2019 1:23 pm

    The first combat use of F-35A fighter jets


    The United States Air Force officially announced that two fifth-generation Lockheed Martin F-35A Lightning II fighters on the morning of April 30, 2019 were used for the first time in combat, striking JDAM guided bombs at Islamic State terrorists in Iraq. The target was a tunnel and an ammunition depot in the Hamrin mountains near Wadi Ashay.

    The aircraft are part of the 4th Fighter Squadron of the 388th Fighter Wing of the US Air Force at Hill Air Base (Utah). Four F-35A fighters (US Air Force numbers 15-5163, 15-5176, 15-5180, and 15-5181) arrived from Hill for the first deployment as part of the US Central Command forces (CENTCOM) on April 15, based at Al -Dafra in the UAE, whence the first combat sortie was made on April 30th. Altogether, it is reported that 12 F-35A should be focused on Al-Dafra during the first deployment.

    From the side of bmpd, we recall that the first real combat use of serial fighters of the F-35 family is now considered to be the engagement of F-35I fighters (in fact, now the same F-35A) by the Israeli air force when attacking targets in Syria on May 22, 2018 (before the first “operational” combat missions of the Israeli F-35I were made on May 14, 2018 (reconnaissance flights might have been meant).

    The first combat use of the American F-35 took place on September 27, 2018, when two F-35B aircraft from the 211st Fighter-Bomber Squadron (VMFA-211) of the US Marine Corps aviation from the American universal landing craft LHD 2 Essex, which was in the Arabian the sea, attacked the GBU-12 Paveway II and GBU-32 JDAM guided bombs at Afghan Taliban targets in Afghanistan. In total, to date, US F-35B aircraft have made more than 100 combat missions in Afghanistan.

    Judging from the published photographs, the F-35A fighters of the US Air Force, like the US Marines used a little earlier in F-35B in Afghanistan, are equipped with so-called "Luneberg lenses" to hide the true EPR of the aircraft. The F-35A fighter jets on April 30 also carried two self-defense Raytheon AIM-9X Sidewinder melee airborne missiles for self-defense on external hangers.

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    https://bmpd.livejournal.com/3630325.html
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    Post  Walther von Oldenburg on Sat May 04, 2019 5:18 pm

    The F-35 debacle continues:
    https://www.almasdarnews.com/article/f-35-fully-mission-capable-27-percent-of-the-time-goa/
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    Post  ATLASCUB on Thu Jul 18, 2019 10:50 am

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    Post  magnumcromagnon on Wed Jul 24, 2019 8:34 pm

    Yet another problem...

    The problem with the cab lights F-35 arose because of the desire to save

    The problem with the cockpit lights of the unobtrusive F-35 fighters (“Military Review” previously wrote about this) arose because of the desire of the program office to save money by using cheaper materials. This writes the publication Breaking Defense, with reference to the spokesman for the project JFS Brandy Sheep.

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    The F-35 program office is experiencing problems associated with both the production of individual elements of the aircraft and the supply of spare parts. In 2019, the program was to reach 80% combat readiness. At the moment, the project management claims that the majority of F-35 units have reached 60% of combat readiness, some reach 70%. However, the "devil is hidden" in the wording, and in fact the combat readiness is much lower. One of the problems that prevent the program from achieving its goals is the loss of the stealth cabin's lantern.

    Cabin F-35 - a complex multi-layer design. Some of the layers are responsible for ensuring that the aircraft’s hood has the same low-profile properties as the entire structure. Most of the lanterns meet the required specifications. However, a number of them began to lose their properties after only a couple of hundred hours of flying time.

    The problem is because of the desire to save

    The problem is caused by the detachment of part of the coating. The question does not affect the airworthiness of the flashlight or aircraft, but the loss of stealth puts the entire fighter at risk. As it turned out, the problem was in the money. More precisely, in an attempt to save.

    The cause of the detachment of the coating was the sealant. When analyzing the problem, it turned out that the material originally certified for the project was replaced in 2015 with a different, cheaper one. After the problem was discovered and identified, the program office returned to the former supplier, more expensive - but more reliable. Now all cab lights subtle fighters come with a better sealant. It is expected that due to this step the number of early delaminations in the F-35 will decrease.

    In addition, the government is preparing to certify coverage from another supplier. All the necessary contracts have been concluded, and tests are being carried out on compatibility of the new cover with the lantern of the F-35. Verification of technical specifications and compatibility testing of a cap from a new supplier with ejection seats is ongoing and is expected to continue until the first quarter of 2020.

    Thanks to these steps, the program management expects an improvement in the supply of spare parts. The office expects to reach the expected target of 80% combat readiness in 2020.


    https://topwar.ru/160522-problema-s-fonarjami-kabin-f-35-voznikla-iz-za-zhelanija-sjekonomit.html
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    Post  kvs on Thu Jul 25, 2019 2:32 am

    They save money on cheap materials and components, but blow billions by overpaying for the whole product. Penny wise and pound foolish
    describes the farcical NATO procurement process.
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    Post  higurashihougi on Thu Jul 25, 2019 7:28 am

    In America, people make guns to sell, not to shot.

    It is OK to push the price over to the sky if it is profitable for the gun companies, for every commercial enterprises profit is the highest priority, not the people, not the Motherland.

    Well, capital has no nationality and no motherland...
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    Post  GarryB on Fri Jul 26, 2019 3:03 am

    Shame they can't talk about anything any more, because you enemy is evil, whether it was the nazis in WWII or a democrat or republican today... there are no degrees, it is just black or white, which is of course referring to skin colour whether you want it to or not which is racist... Rolling Eyes

    It seems the direction they are heading is civil war where bullets and shells do all the talking and the goal is not to come to an understanding, but to kill all those non believers and those who think differently from you and yours.

    The problem with the F-35 was that it was designed to replace everything so it is by definition a monopoly aircraft, and early on they decided that developing alternatives like two or more engines was "inefficient", but ironically by making it more efficient they have eliminated all internal competition, so there is a provider and they have no competitors or experts with internal knowledge of what they are doing and how they are doing it so you can think of a number and then triple it, and then double it again and that is the asking price. Because it is a multiple of what it actually costs you can show some flexibility and reduce it a little when they put the thumbscrews on you, but even after hours of waterboarding you still make a nice profit and that is all you really care about. If you are not making enough about half way into production or if faults are found then ask for more money to find solutions, or just say the cost of making the product to the standard needed has gone up... it is OK... no one ever checks.
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    Post  George1 on Sun Sep 29, 2019 3:01 pm

    First F-35 duty on NATO air defense

    According to NATO structures, on September 25, 2019, six fifth-generation Lockheed Martin F-35A Lightning II Italian Air Force fighters arrived in Iceland at the Keflavik airbase to take part in the NATO Airborne Control Mission of Iceland (NATO Air Policing). This is the first use of F-35 fighters for combat alert air defense within NATO.

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    https://bmpd.livejournal.com/3789541.html
    Isos
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    Post  Isos on Tue Oct 01, 2019 2:12 pm

    http://www.opex360.com/2019/10/01/la-furtivite-des-f-35a-aurait-ete-mise-a-mal-par-un-radar-passif-developpe-par-le-groupe-allemand-hensoldt/

    A german passive radar managed to track a F-35 that came for a meeting. The radar emmits no signal but uses the civilian signals from radio or television for the detection.

    They could also follow the f-35 thanks to its own ADS-B signal so that they could verify if their radar was truly tracking the f35.

    Seems it worked very well. US exposed the f-35 only on static because they were afraud of the radar. Germans waited for the end of the show when it left to test the radar against it.
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    Post  Isos on Tue Oct 01, 2019 6:06 pm

    https://theaviationist.com/2019/09/30/lets-talk-about-the-story-of-a-german-radar-vendor-that-claims-to-have-tracked-two-f-35s-with-passive-radar/

    Article in english about that.

    They are going wild lol1 . Can't even refute the claim so they say stupid things. lol1
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    Post  magnumcromagnon on Tue Oct 15, 2019 8:33 pm


    F-35's delivered to Norway were flawed

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    The Norwegian Air Force is working with the United States to resolve issues with the fifth-generation F-35 fighter.
    The fighters delivered by Norway are unique - they use a Kevlar braking parachute to reduce aircraft mileage at ice airfields. However, the device does not function properly.

    - It does not work as we expected. The Pentagon and the Royal Air Force are coordinating efforts to solve the problem, said Norwegian military aviation commander Brigadier General Tonye Skinnarland to Defense News . She noted that the F-35 at ice airfields behaves much more stable than the F-16.


    A removable brake parachute module is installed between the F-35 keels, the Kevlar dome is released by the pilot after landing and reduces the speed of the aircraft in the runway. When ordering the Norwegian Air Force fighters, they stipulated requirements for the reliability of the device: one failure per 10 thousand applications - this indicator has not yet been achieved.

    - The flight tests of 2018 and the subsequent use of the aircraft in Norway showed that the current parachute does not meet the standard. The updated prototype has already been created, and by February 2020 there will be a series of ground and flight tests, ”said Brandy Schiff, spokesman for the F-35 project. Deliveries of the improved device are scheduled to begin next summer.

    Norway operates 10 F-35 fighters and plans to buy another 42. According to the country's leadership, the new technology will help the kingdom "resist the dominance of Russian aviation in northern Europe." F-35s are based at Evenes airbase in the north of the country. In response to fears that the proximity of the latest fighters with powerful Russian radars might reveal the secrets of the F-35, Norwegian pilots promised to fly cautiously using radar reflectors and other countermeasures.

    https://rg.ru/2019/10/14/postavlennye-norvegii-f-35-okazalis-s-izianom.html 
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    Post  Isos on Fri Jan 31, 2020 5:03 pm

    144 millions $ per jet. That's far away from the "under 100 million $" they said during development of the program.
    Will be funny to see how EU welcomes the news since they will use european aids to buy it. lol1

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    Post  magnumcromagnon on Fri Jan 31, 2020 10:01 pm

    Isos wrote:144 millions $ per jet. That's far away from the "under 100 million $" they said during development of the program.
    Will be funny to see how EU welcomes the news since they will use european aids to buy it.  lol1

    Ryan Browne
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    It was also just recently reported that the gun on the F-35 has horrendous accuracy, which doesn't really matter anyway because it won't out-dogfight any air superiority fighter available on the market.
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    Post  GarryB on Sat Feb 01, 2020 2:01 am

    My understanding of that claim was in regard to ground targets... which is important because it is replacing a lot of dedicated and multirole aircraft that can engage ground targets...

    The irony is that against a peer adversary then missiles are likely to be defeated so finishing off the target with cannon becomes more likely than not...
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    Post  magnumcromagnon on Sat Feb 01, 2020 3:46 am

    GarryB wrote:My understanding of that claim was in regard to ground targets... which is important because it is replacing a lot of dedicated and multirole aircraft that can engage ground targets...

    The irony is that against a peer adversary then missiles are likely to be defeated so finishing off the target with cannon becomes more likely than not...
    Which makes it more abysmal because ground targets are either stationary (buildings) or relatively slow moving targets (technicals, humans) so against OPFOR aircraft it would fair even worse. They keeping adding layers to this F-35 shit-cake!
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    Post  kvs on Sat Feb 01, 2020 4:39 am

    The formula for this wunderwaffe

    F-35 = (drinking your own propaganda koolaid) x (3rd world procurement corruption)

    People think that since the yanquis spend billions on something, it must have some real super-duper technology.
    No, it is an amateur level hack. The objective is not to actually invest in the technology. It is to invest in one's
    mansions and gold stash in offshore banks.

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    Post  magnumcromagnon on Sat Feb 01, 2020 5:03 am

    kvs wrote:The formula for this wunderwaffe

    F-35 = (drinking your own propaganda koolaid) x (3rd world procurement corruption)

    People think that since the yanquis spend billions on something, it must have some real super-duper technology.
    No, it is an amateur level hack.   The objective is not to actually invest in the technology.  It is to invest in one's
    mansions and gold stash in offshore banks.

    It's crazy to see how much of the US MIC has devolved, and to think it all started with the boondoggle started by the Bradley Fighting Vehicle.
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    Post  GarryB on Sun Feb 02, 2020 1:50 am

    Politics was the main problem... like the C-17 they played politics to ensure it was not possible to stop...

    Like with the C-17 they looked at what congressmen and senators had power over the government purse strings for the military budget and they built factories in their constituents so that for any vote they would vote in favour of spending more money because that meant jobs in their voters areas... high paying high skill jobs... in relatively depressed areas.

    It means the logistics of both aircraft is a nightmare... parts are made all over the US... they are not located close together nor near the resources they need to make their components so everything is automatically more expensive... not because it is better... not because it is high tech... not because they are using very high quality materials... but because logistics and production is a mess.

    As noted above attempts to reduce costs and prices led to the use of substandard materials that make things worse... there are so many problems they make patches and work-arounds to bypass the problems rather than actually solve them... often they just change the parameters of the test so it appears the problem does not exist.... either way the problems remain and are not solved... and production of new aircraft continues with these built in problems that have not been solved... when they eventually find solutions they need to test them because solutions for some problems might create problems in other areas... when solutions are found they have to be applied to existing production models and also applied at production level so new aircraft have the problems solved which means taking aircraft out of service to fix them... not cheap.

    Very bad planning and management... but like the C-17 it is bullet proof in terms of funding... the pentagon doesn't need to ask for funds for the F-35 because the senators and congressmen making the financial decisions want to keep their voters working... the Pentagon considers the C-17 to be a successful aircraft because they didn't have to include any in their budget... they would get orders of 50 or 100 at a time to keep production going... and when production slowed down and it looked like some workers would need to be laid off the government ordered more planes... it is the same for the F-35.

    Of course another issue is that factories in economically depressed areas don't get the best and smartest workers with high skill levels and experience... it is just not ideal.
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    Post  George1 on Mon Feb 17, 2020 1:25 pm

    New ODIN Networking System technical support for F-35 fighters

    https://bmpd.livejournal.com/3935066.html
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    Post  JohninMK on Mon Feb 17, 2020 7:57 pm

    Shame that so many are beyond economical upgrade and that not one of them meet the operational specification so will need upgrading whilst their users grin and bear it.

    Of course whilst making positive noises to hide the fact that they bought an aircraft with the R&D unfinished or, as some might, say a lemon. Meanwhile the profit stream, funding a few in Congress is very satisfactory.

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    . At the current pace, 500th F-35 delivery can be expected within the coming weeks and the 600th by the end of 2020.
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    Post  George1 on Thu Mar 05, 2020 1:33 pm

    500th F-35 fighter Delivered

    The American corporation Lockheed Martin on March 3, 2020 announced the delivery of the 500th fifth-generation fighter F-35 Lightning II built by it. The 500th aircraft of this type was the F-35A manufactured for the US Air Force (serial number AF-234, US Air Force number 18-5343), delivered to the Burlington Air Force Base (Vermont) as part of the 134th fighter squadron of the 158th fighter wings of the Air Force of the National Guard of Vermont.

    According to a Lockheed Martin press release, out of 500 F-35 aircraft delivered, 354 aircraft belong to the F-35A modification, 108 aircraft belong to the F-35V modification, and 38 aircraft belong to the F-35C modification. Of the 500 aircraft, 353 were delivered to the US Armed Forces and 147 to foreign customers (including 92 to F-35 “partners”, and 55 were delivered to other countries through the American Foreign Military Sales - FMS program).

    It is also stated that in February 2020, the global fleet of F-35 aircraft reached a total flight time of 250 thousand flight hours. For the F-35 aircraft, "more than 985" pilots and "more than 8980" ground personnel were trained. F-35s are in service in nine countries. For eight operators, these aircraft were declared “Initial Operating Capability”, and for four operators, F-35 aircraft took part in the fighting [meaning the US Air Force and the US Marines, the British Air Force and the Israeli Air Force - bmpd].

    Recall that earlier Lockheed Martin reported that in the 2019 calendar year it built at its factory in Fort Worth (Texas) and delivered a record number of F-35 fighters - 134 F-35 aircraft of all modifications (with a plan of 131 aircraft). In 2018, only 91 F-35 aircraft were delivered. Of the 134 aircraft delivered in 2019, 81 were delivered to the US Armed Forces and 53 to foreign customers (including 30 to “partners” under the F-35 program, and 23 to other countries through the FMS program).

    In 2020, Lockheed Martin plans to supply 141 F-35 aircraft, and continue to increase its production by 2023 inclusive.

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    Post  GarryB on Fri Mar 06, 2020 1:54 am

    I hope they make 5,000 of them......

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