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2018 F-35 News and Discussion

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      Wondering what is revolutionary in it. Uk use to do that for years with pirate and type 45
      Halloweene, instead of imagining that others are claiming something they are not, how about you do us all here a favor and provide a write up on the two capabilities you mention, how they are similar and how they differ? Otherwise, it would appear your aim is nothing more but to troll.

      A write up on how NIFC-CA as a concept is different or similar to other approaches would be welcomed especially if you get into the qualitative piece of composite tracks and the challenging in establishing them using disparate fire control sensors.

      So please, go ahead and lay out what the Type-45 and Pirate do, and how they do it and how many live OTH test intercepts the Type-45 has achieved using any interceptor. Specific to ABL-9.0, and the SM6 the missile, software and the aircraft have had multiple intercepts now to demonstrate OTH capability against targets the AEGIS cannot see. They do this by providing Fire-Control level tracks to the AEGIS radar even when the target is not in its FOV. SM2 and ESSM-II will likely also get this beyond just the SM6 which is an operational weapon with operational OTH capability. The F-35B did this earlier on the Desert Ship and this attempt will be out at sea. Other platforms have done the same. The capability will also move to land soon, and specific to the F-35, they may expand and bring in other sensors such as EODAS and EOTS over time.
      Last edited by bring_it_on; 20th February 2018, 12:51.
      Old radar types never die; they just phased array


        Denmark positions F-35 funds

        The Danish Central Bank has completed the hedging of payments of USD3.7 billion so that the department of defence is able to acquire the Lockheed Martin F-35 Joint Strike Fighter at fixed price in its local currency.

        Copenhagen agreed in 2016 to acquire 27 conventional take-off and landing F-35A variants of the fighter to replace its incumbent F-16 fleet, and has hedged the dollars so that they are available at a fixed price when they are needed.

        This process commenced at the beginning of 2018, the bank said, and has now been completed.

        “The process of entering into forwards, which ensure a fixed price of dollars when the government needs them has been smooth,” Frank Nielsen, assistant governor of the bank, said.
        Old radar types never die; they just phased array


          Successful F-35 drag chute test in Norway

          While The US Air Force is completing another round of cold-weather testing of the F-35A at Eielson Air Force Base in Alaska, Norway completed a successful verification of the drag chute system at rland Air Force Base in Norway February 16th.

          − Receiving the first three aircraft in November 2017 was a major milestone for Norway. The program delivers on all key criteria: Time, cost and performance. Through the verification of the production version of the drag chute on our production model of the F-35, the weapons system is expected to fully qualify for arctic conditions this spring, says Major General Morten Klever, Program Director for the F-35 program in Norway's Ministry of Defence.

          Old radar types never die; they just phased array


            Exclusive: Japan to buy at least 20 more F-35A stealth fighters - sources

            TOKYO (Reuters) - Japan plans to buy at least 20 additional F-35A stealth fighters over the next six years, some or all of which it may purchase directly from Lockheed Martin Corp (LMT.N) in the United States rather than assemble locally, three sources said.

            “In view of budgets and production schedules a new acquisition of around 25 planes is appropriate,” said one of the sources with knowledge of the plan. The sources asked not to be identified because they are not authorized to speak to the media.

            The sources said buying complete aircraft from the United States, at about $100 million each, will save Japan about $30 million per airframe.

            The purchase will add to an earlier order for 42 of the fighters, most of which are being constructed at a “final assembly and check out” plant in Japan operated by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (7011.T), the country’s leading defense contractor.

            That plant is one of only two such factories outside the United States. The other, in Italy, is operated by Leonardo Spa (LDOF.MI).

            As China fields ever more advanced aircraft, including stealth planes, and as North Korea pushes ahead with its nuclear weapon and ballistic missile programs, adding F-35s will further increase Japan’s reliance on U.S. military technology to give it an edge over potential foes in East Asia.

            Japanese military planners are also considering buying F-35Bs, the vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) version of the aircraft. Those models can operate from small islands skirting the East China Sea or from ships such as the Izumo-class helicopter carriers.

            “We have not yet made any plan and we are evaluating what fighter aircraft we need,” Itsunori Onodera said at a news briefing on Tuesday when asked whether Japan planned to buy more F-35s.

            Onodera’s ministry will release two defense reviews by the end of the year that will outline Japan’s security goals and military procurement plans for the five years beginning in April 2019.

            The first of the 42 F-35As ordered by Japan’s Air Self Defence Force (ASDF) are being deployed to Misawa Air Base in northern Japan. Japanese government officials and Lockheed Martin executives are set to attend a ceremony there on Saturday to mark the entry of the first Japanese F-35 into service.

            The F-35 accounts for about a quarter of Lockheed Martin’s total revenue. The company is hiring 1,800 workers for its Fort Worth, Texas, factory to build a fleet that is expected to grow to more than 3,000 jets worldwide. Lockheed Martin is scheduled to nearly triple annual production to more than 160 jets by 2023.

            The first Japanese F-35s will replace aging F-4 Phantom fighters that date back to 1960s. The next batch will allow Japan to retire some of the aging 200 F-15s flown by the ASDF that are the main interceptor workhorse of the nation’s air defenses.

            Japan also wants to build its own stealth fighter, dubbed the F-3, although the high cost of military aircraft development means it will probably need to find foreign partners to share the expense.

            Reporting by Tim KellyEditing by Gerry Doyle

            Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
            "The early bird gets the worm but the second mouse gets the cheese."


              I wonder if this extra, fast-track, cheaper order is to fill a gap which is developing as the Anglo/Japanese super fighter is being defined?


                Or.. It could be for F-35Bs which the FACO is not setup to produce.
                "The early bird gets the worm but the second mouse gets the cheese."


                  Cheaper than the FACO and at 100M$... can only be a "A" .


                    well.. latest F-35B price is about $100 mil (rec Flyaway), but you are likely right on the "A".
                    "The early bird gets the worm but the second mouse gets the cheese."


                      ALIS 3.0 Testing Complete But Improvements Are Slow

                      ALIS 3.0 Testing Complete But Improvements Are Slow
                      JOHN A. TIRPAK

                      The F-35s Autonomic Logistics Integration System, or ALIS, completed operational testing on Feb. 19 and fielded units will be updated with this version on a priority basis, based on which units have the most pressing need, Lockheed Martin Vice President and General Manager for Training and Logistics Solutions Amy Gowder told reporters Feb. 21.

                      Speaking at the units Orlando, Fla., facility, Gowder confirmed that ALIS 3.0 had completed flight testing at Nellis AFB, Nev., although this is an in-house company term and the system does not actually fly.

                      ALIS is a series of mobile servers mounted in two vertical racksone classified and one notthat gathers and processes the flight experience of all the F-35 jets in a squadron, automatically ordering parts and maintenance actions as required. The 13 or so servers are transportable and go with the unit when it deploys. Lockheed and its F-35 military customers are looking at a somewhat smaller system that could deploy with a detachment of, say, six jets, as the Air Force has said it will be doing more frequently.

                      A team of installers travels to F-35 operating locations and updates ALIS hardware over a weekend, when missions are typically not flown, Gowder explained. Units receiving the update first will be those that are operational and flying real-world missions, followed by those doing training.

                      Despite it being the most up-to-date version of the logistics system, Gowder said Lockheed recognizes it must improve ALIS 3.0, as one of the major elements in its sustainment cost reduction efforts.

                      One area [that] we do know needs improvement is in the number of ALIS administrators, Gowder acknowledged. There are eight needed per squadron, and that must come down, she said, because manpower is a key driver of sustainment costs. Future versions will be more centralized to reduce the number of people needed to feed and maintain aircraft information.

                      She said the company is also looking to improve usability liability issues, which means that some ALIS functions actually take longer to perform than they do in legacy logistics systems. The Joint Program Office is allowing Lockheed to roll in fixes to both earlier versions and 3.0 to improve usability.

                      Another area slow to pay off is in automated test. ALIS performs this function at the unit part level, but not yet for the overall system, which Gowder said is where the big bang for the buck is.

                      The company and JPO are deeply into discussions about version 4.0, which was originally slated to be released in 2019, but Gowder suggested that target wont be met, because of new requirements being added and the differing needs of international users.

                      We may choose to defer some nice-to-have features from 4.0 to accelerate more urgently needed improvements, such as cybersecurity, she noted. The focus will continue to be on quality data integrity, Gowder noted. The propulsion systemthe F135 engine and its performance and partswas added to ALIS in 2017, greatly expanding the amount of data it amasses and tracks. The company is trying to make sure that flaws from legacy logistics systems dont migrate into ALIS when data is ported over to it.

                      Gowder asserted that the release of 3.0 fixes some of the problems that have led to F-35 sustainment costs taking too long to come down, and as it spreads throughout the fleet in 2018, I think youll see a big improvement in sustainability this year, she predicted. With a further update in 2019, more progress should be made, she added.
                      "The early bird gets the worm but the second mouse gets the cheese."


                        F-35 By the Numbers (Feb 2018)

                        "The early bird gets the worm but the second mouse gets the cheese."


                          Originally posted by bring_it_on
                          15 Extended Range - AARGM rounds to be procured in FY19 for EMD, Dev. and Operational Test and Evaluation. OE to begin in Q4 2020, while IOT&E in 2022. Low Rate Production set to begin in 2022. JSM, Meteor, Spear3, SOM-J, SDBII, AARGM-ER and SiAW all new weapons waiting in line for F-35 integration in the early-mid 2020s. Majority of these would be developed to be compatible with UAI.
                          I think SiAW likely for later, we haven't seen the mock up of it yet


                            I think SiAW likely for later, we haven't seen the mock up of it yet
                            SIAW is an FY18 new start so very little information is currently available. Based on what is available, the AOA for the program is expected to be completed by this September-October of this year, and the program is expected to go through Milestone-A in about a year after that. From the FYDP, one can see that funding reaches triple digit millions a year starting FY21 (late 2020 and beyond) so it is possible that by 2023-2025 we will begin to see some level of integration or flight testing of the weapon on the F-35. It is going to be a UAI compatible weapon. Unlike the SDB-II for example, which had the F-15E as the primary threshold platform for integration and F-35 integration would happen later post IOC, the SIAW appears to have the F-35 and the B-21 as its primary intended carriers. In the absence of a full schedule, which we will get next year once the AOA is complete, I'm assuming a 4-6 year period b/w Milestone-A and C if it is something based on existing technology or about a 2-3 year period on top of that it if it is based on something new.
                            Last edited by bring_it_on; 24th February 2018, 13:40.
                            Old radar types never die; they just phased array


                              Japan Air Self Defense Force Commemorates First F-35 Arrival to Misawa Air Base

                              Old radar types never die; they just phased array


                                What's happening at 1:08? What's "Thor"? Paint?


                                  Old radar types never die; they just phased array




                                      F-35 and Super Hornet Back on the Table for Canada

                                      by David Donald - February 26, 2018, 4:58 AM

                                      Following the relaunch on Dec. 12, 2017 of its Future Fighter Capability Project (FFCP) to replace the CF-188 (F/A-18A/B) Hornet, the Canadian government has issued a list of eligible suppliers. While the inclusion of the three “Euro-canards”—Dassault Rafale, Eurofighter Typhoon and Saab Gripen E/F—is no surprise, the inclusion of both Boeing and Lockheed Martin indicates a softening of policy toward the U.S. fighters, both of which have been the subject of considerable controversy in Canada.


                                      In the meantime, FFCP continues with the F-35 and Super Hornet back in the running. An element of the request—presumably aimed at Boeing—notes: “The evaluation of bids will also include an assessment of bidders’ impact on Canada’s economic interests. When bids are assessed, any bidder that is responsible for harm to Canada’s economic interests will be at a distinct disadvantage.”

                                      A full RFP for the government-to-government deal is expected in spring 2019, with contract award scheduled for 2021/22. First deliveries are slated for 2025, with initial operational capability a year later. Full operational capability is scheduled for 2031.
                                      More at the Jump
                                      "The early bird gets the worm but the second mouse gets the cheese."


                                        UK government addresses F-35 concerns, states continued commitment to programme

                                        UK government addresses F-35 concerns, states continued commitment to programme
                                        Gareth Jennings, London - IHS Jane's Defence Weekly
                                        26 February 2018

                                        The UK government has responded to a parliamentary report that was highly critical of the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) programme, saying that it remains committed to delivering the capability on time and within budget.

                                        In its response to the December 2017 report titled Unclear for take-off? F-35 Procurement , the government on 26 February clarified a number of the concerns raised with the aircrafts next-generation Multifunctional Advanced Data Link (MADL); the capacity of the internet broadband fitted to the Queen Elizabeth-class (QEC) aircraft carriers; the reported cyber vulnerabilities of the Autonomic Logistics Information System (ALIS); a lack of information on the current or the final costs of the programme; as well as software and hardware development problems.

                                        In the original report published on 10 December 2017, the Parliamentary Defence Committee noted a lack of transparency in the F-35 programme in general and inadequate responses to a critical article published in The Times earlier in the year in particular, both of which could risk undermining public confidence in the project that is critical to the future of the UK defence.

                                        The government said MADL is just one of a number of solutions that the Ministry of Defence (MoD) is actively pursuing as it looks to improve the interoperability between defence and security systems across the air, land, sea, and cyber domains, and for the F-35 to share data covertly across the battlespace in particular. The MoD has undertaken a series of trials of communication nodes between the Link 16 format and the MADL format using F-35 and [Eurofighter] Typhoon aircraft [.] The MoD, alongside the US services and industry partners will continue to explore the value of exchanging data through the classified series of Babel Fish trials, the government said.
                                        (318 of 1219 words)
                                        Sorry for the paywall
                                        "The early bird gets the worm but the second mouse gets the cheese."


                                          Turkey mulls purchase of USs F35-B for future airplane carrier

                                          SEVİL ERKUŞ/WASHINGTON
                                          February 26 2018 17:41:00

                                          Amid plans to upgrade its naval air forces with light and full-equipped aircraft carriers over the next decade, Turkey is now considering procuring new generation F-35B fighter aircrafts with the qualifications of short take-off and vertical landing (STOVL), as part of the ongoing Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) program.

                                          As part of the U.S. Defense Departments JSF program along with a number of prominent NATO allies including the United Kingdom, Italy and the Netherlands, the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) has been planning to upgrade its air force fleets with 100 F-35 aircrafts to be jointly produced under this program.

                                          F-35A aircrafts have the Conventional Take Off & Landing (CTOL) qualifications and will therefore be used to replace the Turkish Air Forces F-16 fleets in the next two decades. F-35B fighters, however, are planned to be procured in line with Ankaras growing interest in strengthening its naval forces, mainly for overseas operations.

                                          To this end, the countrys work on building its largest amphibious assault ship (LHD), also known as a light aircraft carrier, TCG Anadolu, are continuing amid plans to be launched by 2021. Over the next decade, Turkey also plans to build its first full-equipped aircraft carrier. Both aircraft carriers will be home to F35B aircrafts.

                                          Turkey is currently in the process of setting up two large military bases, one in Qatar and the other in Somalia. Turkey has been trying to reinforce its naval forces through a project that aims to build new assault ships and submarines through the use of national resources.

                                          Where the future of naval aviation begins

                                          Along with a group of international reporters, the Hrriyet Daily News visited the Naval Air Station (NAS) Patuxent River, a U.S. military facility where F-35 aircrafts are being tested.

                                          NAS Patuxent River is considered to be where the future of Naval Aviation begins. It hosts more than 50 tenant activities, including the Naval Air Systems Command and the Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division.

                                          The F35Bs are launched into the skies from a ski-jump as part of a test program before being deployed to the aircraft carriers on which they will serve.

                                          "F35s easy to aviate"

                                          According to Andrew Mack, the F-35 ITF chief test engineer, aviating F35 warrior aircrafts are safe and easy thanks to modern software.

                                          These aircrafts are very safe. They are also easy to fly thanks computerized qualifications. F16 pilots still need four weeks in class and two weeks flying training. But half-an-hour simulation is enough to land this aircraft vertically, Mack said.

                                          In flight tests we have a lot of unique things that are able to create a safe envelope for the pilot to operate and utilize the air plane. It requires a lot of unique instrumentation The recovery for any kind of out-of-control situation is the same. The pilot can let go and the jet recovers on its own. The engine has performed remarkably during all of its tests, he added.

                                          Asked about the Pentagons suspension of testing last year after problems about pilot awareness, pilot safety and oxidation, Mack said it was about a lot of on-board oxygen generating systems.

                                          It did touch our program for a while in terms of an investigation that had to be done. The same issued also touched other planes with on-board oxygen generating systems. The mystery is still not completely solved but we are confident about the safety of the aircraft and the indications that exist if there is an anomaly, he added.

                                          cached version:
                                          "The early bird gets the worm but the second mouse gets the cheese."