now noticed in Twitter:
Yep, all Great news as long as STOOPID isn't catching, remember, we are going to have the low life scum of the planet running the house!now noticed in Twitter:
The Block IV version of the F-35 will add a fifth “mission thread” to the four missions it already performs—that of “expanded surface warfare”—Joint Strike Fighter Program Executive Officer Vice Adm. Mat Winter said in a Wednesday interview with Air Force Magazine.
The Joint Program Office also has endorsed keeping Turkey as an F-35 partner despite concerns about that country buying a Russian-made missile defense system, Winter said. He also confirmed Japan’s expanded order for F-35s and said the Navy is on track to be operational with the C model of the fighter in two months.
The new mission boils down to improved capability “in maritime strike,” Winter told Air Force Magazine. The four core missions in the F-35 baseline version are: air superiority, suppression and destruction of enemy air defenses, close air support, and strategic attack of key targets.
The Block 3F version can do limited strikes against ships, but Winter explained the radar and other sensor functions needed to attack land targets are different for attack of sea targets. The update in Block IV will allow the F-35 to be effective in the sea strike role as well, he said.
The Navy/Air Force Long-Range Anti-Ship Missile (LRASM), a variant of the AGM-158 JASSM-ER, is not a fundamental element of the new mission capability, Winter said. Although the F-35 has had fit checks of LRASM externally and can probably carry the weapon internally, the Navy’s threshold munition for the mission is the AGM-154 Joint Stand-Off Weapon, or JSOW, he said, noting that LRASM may be added later.
Winter said the Joint Program Office was tasked to provide a judgement on the potential effects of Turkey being expelled from the F-35 program. Turkey, one of the original partners on the program, has come under criticism for human rights violations and its plan to buy the Russian S400 air defense system. Congress has expressed the fear that F-35s operating in close proximity to the S400 could give Russian technicians crucial insights into spotting and tracking the stealthy F-35.
“We supported the department’s report in November that provided our concerns and the impact of the current Turkey-US relationship,” Winter said. The program’s “industrial base evaluation” of the effects of ousting Turkey—which produces parts for the F-35, is standing up an engine depot, and will buy 100 of the jets—would be a drag on the program, and Turkey should be retained in the consortium if possible, Winter asserted.
“The facts are that Turkey produces 844 parts for me, and they are quality parts, affordable parts, and delivered on time,” he said. “Turkey ‘s industrial establishment for F-35 is one of my best partners, and they do great work.” His “official line” is that Turkey remain “a committed partner, and we are continuing to execute the program of record, with Turkey participation, in providing their aircraft, establishing their footprint, and preparing for their arrival of aircraft in-country next November.”
Winter noted, though, that his office is continuously exploring work-arounds that can be put in place if any partner drops out or suffers severe production issues that might imperil the program, which sources parts and materials from all its partner countries.
“I am doing appropriate acquisition supply chain risk management, like I do everywhere. And so, I’m not doing anything special” with regard to Turkey, Winter said.
Winter confirmed that Japan has just added 105 F-35s to its existing order for 42 of the fighters, and that this expanded buy would include a mix of both F-35A conventional takeoff models and F-35B short takeoff/vertical landing types, for “a total of 147 F-35s,” he said. The Marine Corps operates the F-35B exclusively.
The additional aircraft would include 42 F-35B airplanes, which would likely operate from Japanese “helicopter carriers,” which are flat-top ships analogous to Navy amphibious assault ships, which are used by the Marine Corps.
The F-35Bs would also allow the Japanese Self-Defense Forces to operate cooperatively with Marine Corps F-35Bs stationed in Japan.
The new request will modify a previous letter of agreement governing the aircraft, Winter said. Japan’s order will make that country, eventually, the second-largest operator of the F-35 after the US, eclipsing Britain’s planned inventory of 138 of the fighters. Other international operators of the F-35B include Britain and Italy.
Winter also said the Navy is “on track” to declare Initial Operational Capability with the F-35C onboard the USS Carl Vinson in February.
“They just finished their ‘safe for flight’ [certification] with VFA-147 on board the Carl Vinson last week, that’s a major milestone,” Winter reported. “That means all the elements for VFA-147 will be available for the first squadron for deployment. ...The training systems are the remaining elements that are being delivered.”
Amen to all of that, with the notation that the United Kingdom is the second largest operator of the F-35 Bravo, having commenced sea quals aboard the Queen Elizabeth! I want to welcome Japan aboard as the third largest operator of the F-35 Bravo!
... now on the way reading almost anything LOL... while I'm on tracks right now LOL going to celebrate Christmas Day
Lockheed Martin delivered the 91st F-35 aircraft for the year, meeting the joint government and industry delivery target for 2018 and demonstrating the F-35 enterprise’s ability to ramp to full-rate production, the company announced Dec. 20
The 91 deliveries in 2018 represent nearly a 40 percent increase from 2017 and about a 100 percent production increase compared to 2016. Next year, Lockheed Martin is set to deliver more than 130 F-35s representing yet another 40 percent increase in production.
“This milestone demonstrates the F-35 enterprise is prepared for full rate production and ready to deliver on increasing demand from our customers worldwide,” said Greg Ulmer, Lockheed Martin vice president and general manager of the F-35 program. “Year-over-year, we have increased production, lowered costs, reduced build time, and improved quality and on-time deliveries. Today, the F-35 is the most capable fighter jet in the world, and we’re delivering more aircraft per year than any other fighter on the market at equal to or less cost.”
The 91st aircraft is a U.S. Marine Corps F-35B, to be delivered to Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, South Carolina. In 2018, deliveries included 54 F-35s for the United States, 21 for international partner nations, and 16 for Foreign Military Sales customers.
To date, more than 355 F-35s have been delivered and are now operating from 16 bases worldwide. More than 730 pilots and over 6,700 maintainers are trained, and the F-35 fleet has surpassed more than 175,000 cumulative flight hours. Ten nations are flying the F-35, seven countries have F-35s operating from a base on their home soil, four services have declared initial operating capability, and two services have announced their F-35s have been used in combat operations.
The F-35 Joint Program Office is working to help the Air Force and its sister services meet the 80 percent mission capable rate for the fleet, ordered by former Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, by accelerating and streamlining parts production, said program executive officer Vice Adm. Mat Winter.
In a December interview, Winter explained that “parts are a major contributor” to the readiness rate of the F-35, which is pegged at just over 54 percent, according to a 2017 Pentagon report.
“We have initiatives underway to increase spare parts production,” including new parts from industry and repaired parts from military depots, Winter said. Those initiatives are “fully funded and supported” by the Air Force and should increase squadron-level readiness rates. There’s a “strategic focus” on increasing the number of parts repaired at the depots “and get them back in the bin … so that industry can then ramp up and build more new parts, without having to spend time repairing parts.”
Mattis ordered the readiness increase of the F-35—along with that of the F-22, F-16, and Navy F/A-18—in an October memo. The services have until the end of fiscal year 2019 to get there.
One of the problems that was vexing the parts supply chain was that the services were operating not only different types of F-35s, but different configurations within types, requiring industry’s limited capacity for production to be spread across many dissimilar components. That’s largely been solved, Winter reported. The configurations have been reduced by the “Tech Refresh 2” modifications, which are installing new cockpit displays, core processors, radar elements, and other items in depot-level modifications that take several months.
“Those are well underway and resourced appropriately and we have a good plan,” Winter asserted, such that “by the end of 2019, and maybe into the beginning of 2020, the technical refresh modifications will be in their final throes and deliveries.” The “majority of parts are common,” he asserted, in turn allowing industry and depots to speed up their production and increase capacity.
“Supply chain performance” is Winter’s biggest concern when it comes to readiness, he said. Efforts are aimed at “a strategic focus to take the repair demand signal off the industry [and] bring it into the Air Force depots.” He added that “75-80 percent of the aircraft is in the supply chain, not at Lockheed [Martin], right? So we are getting after that supply chain performance and their ability to meet the capacity demands we need. So, that’s working.”