F-35 Joint Strike Fighter News, Videos and pics Thread

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Dispute Not Stalling F-35 Testing System, Lockheed Martin Says

while trying to squeeze as much as it can, LOL managers don't know the word "enough"
A legal dispute between
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and the U.S. government that held up development of a key
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testing system is not further delaying the effort, says the manufacturer, which is awaiting a verdict by the Armed Services Board of Contract Appeals (ASBCA).

Lockheed Martin has delivered its products to the Naval Air Systems Command (Navair) to build the Joint Simulation Environment (JSE), including an “F-35 In a Box” software module that replicates the fighter’s mission systems for testing purposes. The software module contains nine algorithms that the manufacturer claims as intellectual property (IP), which the government disputes.

The Pentagon is relying on activation of the JSE, a high-fidelity modeling and simulation environment, to complete mission testing required for the F-35’s initial operational test and evaluation phase and a full-rate production decision. But the dispute over intellectual property rights has delayed the JSE by 2 1/2 years, according to acquisition executives.

The JSE was supposed to begin operating in late 2017 but now is scheduled to achieve the first-use milestone in July 2020, Robert Behler, Pentagon director of Operational Test and Evaluation, told lawmakers during a House Armed Services subcommittee hearing last month.

During a briefing Dec. 3 at the Interservice/Industry Training, Simulation and Education Conference, Chauncey McIntosh, Lockheed Martin vice president for F-35 training and logistics, said the IP dispute is not holding back Navair’s development of the JSE.

“Lockheed Martin has delivered all of its products to the Navair team,” including the F-35 In a Box module, McIntosh said. “The JSE team is currently integrating that product along with the other products that they’re fielding. There is no dispute that is preventing development of the Joint Simulation Environment for Navair.”

When a Defense Contracts Audit Agency review found no proof of Lockheed Martin’s IP claim, the manufacturer appealed to the ASBCA. It continues to await a decision. “We are supporting that appeal and [will] progress from there based on what happens with the appeal,” McIntosh said.

Also testifying before the House Armed Services subcommittee on Nov. 13, Air Force Lt. Gen. Eric Fick, F-35 program executive officer, said the program moved forward with the JSE despite the legal dispute.

“That slowed our progress in getting started and slowed our early progress once we had begun,” Fick told lawmakers. “In order to get on contract, in order to start moving forward, we had to sign up to accept less than government purpose rights, but reserved the right to challenge that intellectual property assertion.”

While Navair is developing the JSE at its headquarters at Patuxent River Naval Air Station, Maryland, the U.S. Air Force announced in January that it was building complementary JSE facilities at Edwards AFB, California, and Nellis AFB, Nevada. Plans call for breaking ground on both facilities next May.
as I said before (and could quote myself now, just there's nobody reading this thread LOL), it's all about
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Lockheed Looks To More F-35 Development Work

Dec 9, 2019
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is looking to new government interest in follow-on modernization (FOM) upgrades of the
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Joint Strike Fighter to drive future business returns on top of what could be ballooning sustainment revenue, according to the company’s chief financial officer (CFO).

CFO Ken Possenriede told a Credit Suisse investor conference this month that FOM and sustainment will drive business growth out of the F-35 for Lockheed and its shareholders as production returns shrink with unit price reductions and maturing production.

“We ended the SDD [system design and development] program, but the customer still is looking at capability that they want,” he told financial analysts and investors. “So you’ll see growth there and in sustainment.”

Lockheed Martin expects to deliver 131 F-35 Joint Strike Fighters this year, compared with 91 in 2018, and should deliver 140 in 2020. Over the next few years, Lockheed expects total international demand for the F-35 to drive production to about 175 a year, most of which will be built in Fort Worth, but with some finished in Japan or Italy.

But because the price per aircraft has been reduced 13% over low-rate production lots 11-14, to below $80 million per jet for the A variant, that part of the program–“the lion’s share” now–is increasingly becoming minimized as a moneymaker.

“The reduction in price has been faster than the ramp-up in quantity,” Possenriede said. “So it’s going to be, at least in the short term, [that] you’ll probably see modest growth in production revenue.”

Lockheed won the original $19 billion SDD contract in 2001, but spending on the FOM, also called Block 4 improvements, could reach an additional $16 billion under Pentagon plans discussed last year.

At the same time, the F-35 fleet is expected to more than double from about 400 aircraft to 1,000 in the next couple of years.

“You’ll have more sparing, some more repairing,” he said. “But then you’ll see a larger influx of the modification work that will get done, and you’ll see sustainment over the next couple of years double. So that will be a faster piece of the revenue.”

The company is about one-third complete in standing up repair base facilities now.

Lockheed also continues to promote a performance-based logistics contract for the F-35, the CFO noted.

“We provided a white paper, call it an unsolicited proposal, that basically commits to the 80% availability and it commits to the $25,000 per flight hour, which we think is the right number to get to,” he said Dec. 5.

The F-35 currently costs $35,000 a flight hour.


Not much has been happening lately (of significance) - just another country going IOC with its F-35.

South Korean air force declares IOC for its F-35 Joint Strike Fighters

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With Japan, South Korea and the F-35Bs of the USMC, there are at least 40 plus of them in that region currently. Next year I believe the USAF will permanently base a squadron of F-35As in Japan. That will take the overall number to 80 plus as South Korea and Japan will also be adding additional numbers onto their fleet in 2020.


the word "purchase" has a special meaning (
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) not mentioned inside
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The heading of the article is somewhat misleading. The content is reporting that Israel is still undecided in its prioritization between the purchase of F-35 vs F-15. Israel is probably the most experienced active combatant in the application of air power in that region. Yet it still has an underlying faith in the capabilities of the F-15 against such modern IADS threats like the S-300/400 that are proliferating in that part of the world. In contrast, some quarters in the US think that the F-15 is past its prime even with upgrades.

On paper, the F-15 may well be past its prime because of its high RCS profile. How much EPASS is able to mitigate that risk is unknown but the Israeli clearly knows their business. I also read recently an experienced F-16 pilot describing how it would fare when going up against a F-15. In his experience, the pilot said that he would probably win 75 % of a WVR encounter. However that statement also came with a caveat. In the real world he said, the F-16 is unlikely to survive to the merge against a F-15. This piece is a mystery to me but the Israeli may have the answer.. .