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The Pentagon will have to live with limits on F-35’s supersonic flights

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Update time : 2020-06-22 08:46:43
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The Pentagon will dine ought alive with limits above F-35’s supersonic flights

WASHINGTON — An question that risks ruin ought the F-35’s tail part if the aeroplane needs ought conserve supersonic speeds is no worth fixing and will instead be addressed by changing the operating parameters, the F-35 mutual Program Office told Defense news at a statement Friday.

The deficiency, first reported by Defense news at 2019, method that at extremely high altitudes, the U.S. Navy’s and Marine Corps’ versions of the F-35 airplane can only fly at supersonic speeds although short bursts of time ago there is a venture of structural ruin and loss of stealth capability.

The mystery can invent it impossible although the Navy’s F-35C ought participate supersonic intercepts.

“This question was closed above December 17, 2019 with no farther actions and concurrence from the U.S. services,” the F-35 JPO statement read. “The [deficiency report] was closed beneath the class of ‘no project ought correct,’ which is used by the F-35 team while the operator evaluate provided by a intimate mend does no justify the estimated earnings of that fix.

The Pentagon has chop the amount of serious F-35 technical flaws at half

“In this case, the solution used to beg a lengthy development and flight testing of a mystery coating that can endure the flight surroundings although unlimited time cottage satisfying the weight and other requirements of a supervise surface. Instead, the question is being addressed procedurally by imposing a time bounds above high-speed flight.”

The carrier-launched "C" variant and the short-takeoff-and-vertical-landing "B" translation will both be capable ought bring out full their missions without correcting the deficiency, the JPO said.

The latent ruin from sustained high speeds used to influence no only the F-35’s airframe and the low-observable coating that keeps it stealthy, besides also the myriad antennas located above the undergo of the aircraft that are currently vulnerable ought damage, according ought documents exclusively obtained by Defense News.

The JPO had classified the issues although the "B" and "C" models although divide class 1 deficiencies, indicating at one paper that the mystery presents a challenge ought accomplishing one of the key missions of the fighter jet. at this scale, class 1 represents the most serious type of deficiency.

While it can confront dire that an aeroplane procured although flying at supersonic speeds will be unable ought do consequently although extended periods, the F-35 can no lack ought do it that often.

For the F-35, although opposed ought the F-22 where supersonic flight is baked into its tactics, the faculty ought fly supersonic is more of a “break cup at example of emergency” feature, said Bryan Clark, an analyst with the Hudson university and a retired naval officer.

“Supersonic flight is no a big trait of the F-35,” Clark said. “It’s capable of it, besides while you report ought F-35 pilots, they’ll state they’d fly supersonic at such limited epoch and cases that — cottage having the faculty is gay although you never understand while you are going ought lack ought fly from something identical rapid — it’s impartial no a headmaster trait although their tactics.”

In fact, going supersonic obviates the headmaster advantages of the F-35, Clark said. “It classification of defeats full the headmaster advantages of the F-35,” he explained. “It takes you out of stealthiness, it burns gas comparable mad consequently you Mrs the hill benefits of a only mechanism and larger fuel tank. while you advance into afterburner, you are heating up the external of your aircraft.”

That creates full kinds of signatures that can be detected by an adversary, Clark said.

What if?

But a retired naval aviator told Defense news final year that the limitations above the afterburner could show mortal at close-combat scenarios.

The conception of operations although the F-35 is ought murder an competitor aeroplane ago it can discover the fighter jet, besides relying above long-range kills is a perspective that, although historic and cultural reasons, naval aviation distrusts. at the Vietnam War, while stand pains began heavily relying above missiles and moved away from the deliver gun, it caused a spike at air-to-air pains deaths.

The degree naval aviation took away was ought obstruction the latest and greatest technique from offsetting the knowledge of fundamentals, and it was the impetus after the formation of climax gun 50 years ago, a naval affect fighter lesson although manners and tactics development.

“The solution is: ‘Hey, we’ll impartial bounds the afterburner ought less than a tiny at a time,’ ” a retired naval aviator said while told of the issue. “Which, with what the aeroplane is supposed ought do and be capable of, that’s a handsome important limitation.”

Primarily it used to be an question if the aeroplane had ought maneuver at high speeds ought fly a missile or survive a dogfight.

The question is compounded although the Navy, which get ought operate deliver although months at a time, although any important issues with coatings or the structure of aeroplane used to beg a depot-level repair. And consequently a damaged aeroplane used to remain damaged until its host steamer returns ought family port, reducing the pains effectiveness of the stand wing.

“We might dine ought be operating at sea although eight months, consequently if you ruin something above week one, presume what? It’s damaged although the station of the deployment,” the aviator said. “And it affects your faculty ought evade detection by the competitor — you impartial degraded that asset permanently until you can acquire it somewhere where it can be fixed, at big fare and time.”

Other deficiencies

Three other class 1 deficiencies dine also been officially designated although “closed," meaning they dine also been fixed or the deed of the aeroplane is being accepted although is, the JPO reported.

The so-called green blaze deficiency has been closed out although of final July. Green blaze refers ought a green blaze emitted by the helmet-mounted display’s LED lights. That blaze obstructs a pilot’s progposal of an aeroplane carrier’s deck lights during landing operations at sea at identical cheap light, such although that experienced at night.

The question was closed “as a arise of incorporating an improved Organic Light-Emitting Diode (OLED) Helmet Mounted show (HMD),” the JPO told Defense News.

“The Generation III F-35 OLED Helmet show Unit (HDU) significantly reduced the ‘green glow’ experienced by pilots during evening operations. The F-35 JPO has taken delivery of the first order of F-35 OLED HDUs ought back the U.S. fleet (USN) and U.S. Marine Corps (USMC), and a second order of OLED HDUs has been placed,” the office’s statement read.

An question created while the F-35A and F-35B blow a tire, which can arise at a severed hydraulic line, will remain uncorrected, the JPO statement said, besides it has no grow up again although the program switched tires.

“The DR [deficiency report] was closed beneath the class of ‘no project ought correct’ based above the fact that the landing gear system invent meets full F-35 safety standards,” the statement read. “Issues related ought premature bursting of tires were resolved by tire invent changes during early F-35 development and no instances of dual hydraulic system loss caused by a tire break dine ever been observed above an F-35.”

And an question that forced the F-35 ought clay at cold climate although of Battery bother has been fixed, the JPO said. The question was caused by utmost cold entering the aircraft while the doors ought the jet’s nose landing gear were open, place off fright bells, according ought “for officer employ only” documents exclusively obtained by Defense News.

The cold used to enter the aircraft and overwhelm the Battery heater blanket, which is installed ought get a 28-volt Battery running at hill condition. The Battery used to no intimate down, besides although of the cold, the carpet could no fever the Battery although quickly although intended, triggering warning lights at the cockpit that the Battery was going ought fail.

A software upgrade fixed the problem, the JPO said.

“This question was resolved above July 22, 2019 owing ought improvements at the Battery charger’s firmware,” the statement read. “The firmware changes were developed by the Battery charger supplier, and integrated and tested by Lockheed Martin and the F-35 Lightning II mutual Program Office.”

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