Author Topic: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)  (Read 1808100 times)

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Offline Dana381

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4575 on: June 30, 2020, 12:05:28 »
Interesting article outlining the F-35 costs and parts availability struggles. I get the feeling the site is very pro F-35 but it was still an interesting read.

https://nationalinterest.org/blog/reboot/ten-reasons-why-f-35-remains-worlds-dominant-stealth-fighter-163723

I think the Trudeau and the Liberals know that it is the right fighter for Canada and they are waiting till the next election. If they win they will order it and tout the cost savings because the price has dropped so much. If they lose the Conservatives can order it and they can oppose it with all the rhetoric they used to cancel it in the first place. Win - Win for the Liberal party.

Offline MilEME09

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4576 on: June 30, 2020, 12:14:41 »
Interesting article outlining the F-35 costs and parts availability struggles. I get the feeling the site is very pro F-35 but it was still an interesting read.

https://nationalinterest.org/blog/reboot/ten-reasons-why-f-35-remains-worlds-dominant-stealth-fighter-163723

I think the Trudeau and the Liberals know that it is the right fighter for Canada and they are waiting till the next election. If they win they will order it and tout the cost savings because the price has dropped so much. If they lose the Conservatives can order it and they can oppose it with all the rhetoric they used to cancel it in the first place. Win - Win for the Liberal party.

Many of us weren't pro F35 at first but as this procurement dragged on the situation changed more in the F35s favour, like cost for example. We really need to pick an aircraft soon, especially for economic recovery to get Canadian companies those industrial benefits.
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Offline Dana381

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4577 on: June 30, 2020, 12:40:43 »
Many of us weren't pro F35 at first but as this procurement dragged on the situation changed more in the F35s favour, like cost for example. We really need to pick an aircraft soon, especially for economic recovery to get Canadian companies those industrial benefits.

I'm one of the ones that was not pro F-35 in the beginning. The facts have changed my mind! The first things I heard about it was how bad it was in various areas and how expensive it was. Mainly from anti F-35 sources.

I still wish it was a 2 engine fighter, no matter how much more reliable this engine is than previous engines redundancy is still safer. The air-frame and engine incorporate redundancy's for safety sake, how much safer would it be with two engines? Rhetoric question, I'm not trying to reopen the debate just sharing my opinion.

Offline Good2Golf

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4578 on: June 30, 2020, 12:52:41 »
...I still wish it was a 2 engine fighter, no matter how much more reliable this engine is than previous engines redundancy is still safer. The air-frame and engine incorporate redundancy's for safety sake, how much safer would it be with two engines? Rhetoric question, I'm not trying to reopen the debate just sharing my opinion.

The reliability has been addressed ad nauseum.  What is someone’s ’enhanced reliability’ is another person’s ’increased probability for something to go wrong.’  Imagine if a bunch of civilians tried to convince Kelly Johnson to put a second engine in the U-2 because it was ‘safer’....

F-16 has done just fine with one engine for decades and decades, and the F-35 balances reliability with reduced propulsion complexity (less the 35B lift-fan modified version of the PW135) in the same way as the multi-role light fighter that the F-16 was in its era.

So the. you’re a Super Hornet only guy, no F-35, no Gripen, due to the single engine?

Offline dapaterson

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4579 on: June 30, 2020, 13:04:42 »
The original Single Engine fanclub was in no small part a rearguard action to prevent Canada from buying the cheaper F-16, and to steer the decision space to the preferred outcome of the F-15.
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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4580 on: June 30, 2020, 13:10:35 »
Interesting article outlining the F-35 costs and parts availability struggles. I get the feeling the site is very pro F-35 but it was still an interesting read.

Have you read any other National Interest articles? They've been very critical of the F-35 in the past and posted articles supporting the Gripen's development...

Offline Dana381

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4581 on: July 01, 2020, 12:57:59 »
Have you read any other National Interest articles? They've been very critical of the F-35 in the past and posted articles supporting the Gripen's development...

I was unaware of that, I have only recently read their articles and only when I see them re-posted on other sites. It is not a site I frequent. My comment was based purely on the way that article was written. I can't explain why but I just got the sense the writer was a fan by he way the article was written. It just didn't feel impartial.


So the. you’re a Super Hornet only guy, no F-35, no Gripen, due to the single engine?

No I am wholly in the F-35 camp because of it's capability, I just wish that capability came with two engines.

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Online Colin P

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4582 on: July 02, 2020, 02:25:40 »
Many of us weren't pro F35 at first but as this procurement dragged on the situation changed more in the F35s favour, like cost for example. We really need to pick an aircraft soon, especially for economic recovery to get Canadian companies those industrial benefits.

Very true, I do worry that the F35 is very dependent on not being seen to early, giving it an edge. But there are a lot of smart people working to counter that, so if it loses it's stealth edge and the networking edge is also eroded, then can it compete?

Online CBH99

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4583 on: July 02, 2020, 02:55:16 »
That's a good question.  Curious to hear some opinions on that, especially Supersonic Max & whoever else may be knowledgeable.


Let's say in 5 or 10 years time, Russian and Chinese systems have caught up.  The F-35 loses it's stealth advantage, and it's advanced sensors/EW systems are eroded by them fielding systems that can adequately mitigate the advantages the F-35 has currently.

Is it still the best choice?


I'd believe so, as the software & capabilities of the F-35 will continue to evolve also.  The capabilities it has today aren't the same capabilities it will have in the same 5 to 10 year time-frame
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Offline tomahawk6

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4584 on: July 02, 2020, 07:32:21 »
What is the role of the RCAF ? It has a NORAD mission but not necessarily a ground attack mission or support of ground troops. The F15 a two engine aircraft can perform NORAD missions. The A10 can do that. I can see the USAF need for the F35 but not the RCAF. The F15 has an strike version which might be more in keeping with likely scenarios.

F15x

https://www.popularmechanics.com/military/aviation/a22563768/super-eagle-f-15x/#:~:text=A%20new%20report%20reveals%20details%20on%20the%20F-15X%2C,considerably%20cheaper%20to%20fly%20during%20than%20other%20fighters.
« Last Edit: July 02, 2020, 07:58:51 by tomahawk6 »

Offline MilEME09

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4585 on: July 02, 2020, 09:32:30 »
That's a good question.  Curious to hear some opinions on that, especially Supersonic Max & whoever else may be knowledgeable.


Let's say in 5 or 10 years time, Russian and Chinese systems have caught up.  The F-35 loses it's stealth advantage, and it's advanced sensors/EW systems are eroded by them fielding systems that can adequately mitigate the advantages the F-35 has currently.

Is it still the best choice?


I'd believe so, as the software & capabilities of the F-35 will continue to evolve also.  The capabilities it has today aren't the same capabilities it will have in the same 5 to 10 year time-frame

Great thing about technology is, it evolves, they find a way to detect us, we step up the EW game to remain unseen until its too late.
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Online Colin P

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4586 on: July 02, 2020, 18:03:17 »
The reality is no one who really knows is going to say how big the gap is and even if they have a good understanding of our side of the EW fence, they may not know as much as they think about the other side.

Personally I think the F35 brings a lot to the table in regards to EW, but how long does that edge last? In a perfect world I would like to see a mixed fleet, so the F35 do their EW thing and the other aircraft do most of the fighting and bombing of annoying groups of farmers, religious nutbars and drug lords.

Offline daftandbarmy

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4587 on: July 02, 2020, 23:37:25 »
The reality is no one who really knows is going to say how big the gap is and even if they have a good understanding of our side of the EW fence, they may not know as much as they think about the other side.

Personally I think the F35 brings a lot to the table in regards to EW, but how long does that edge last? In a perfect world I would like to see a mixed fleet, so the F35 do their EW thing and the other aircraft do most of the fighting and bombing of annoying groups of farmers, religious nutbars and drug lords.

Are you predicting a revolt breaking out in the Republic of Alberta or something? ;)
“To stand on the firing parapet and expose yourself to danger; to stand and fight a thousand miles from home when you're all alone and outnumbered and probably beaten; to spit on your hands and lower the pike; to stand fast over the body of Leonidas the King; to be rear guard at Kunu-Ri; to stand and be still to the Birkenhead Drill; these are not rational acts. They are often merely necessary.”
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Online Colin P

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4588 on: July 03, 2020, 00:14:44 »
My understanding is that Northern Alberta, Soon to be declared Republic of Tuffnell and the Fantasians are forming an alliance.

Online CBH99

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4589 on: July 03, 2020, 00:48:47 »
Are you predicting a revolt breaking out in the Republic of Alberta or something? ;)


Hahaha!!  I'm born & raised Alberta, how dare you call us out for what we are!!   :tsktsk:   ;)

I'm offended.  You forgot to be inclusive of the imbred morons driving pick-up trucks, who can only work in oil & gas, who apparently 'can't learn' any other skills.  It's 2020, can't be excluding anybody.  Don't ya know? 
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Offline daftandbarmy

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4590 on: July 05, 2020, 11:26:44 »

Hahaha!!  I'm born & raised Alberta, how dare you call us out for what we are!!   :tsktsk:   ;)

I'm offended.  You forgot to be inclusive of the imbred morons driving pick-up trucks (with Truck-testicles danging off the rear bumper), who can only work in oil & gas, who apparently 'can't learn' any other skills.  It's 2020, can't be excluding anybody.  Don't ya know?

There, FTFY :)
“To stand on the firing parapet and expose yourself to danger; to stand and fight a thousand miles from home when you're all alone and outnumbered and probably beaten; to spit on your hands and lower the pike; to stand fast over the body of Leonidas the King; to be rear guard at Kunu-Ri; to stand and be still to the Birkenhead Drill; these are not rational acts. They are often merely necessary.”
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Offline MarkOttawa

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4591 on: July 20, 2020, 16:02:26 »
How much will all these planned upgrades of various sorts improve the F-35A's capabilities for the vital RCAF NORAD air intercept mission, esp. if in stealth mode, regarding bombers (and fighter escorts?) and launched cruise missiles?

Quote
Lengthy F-35 Upgrade List To Transform Strike Fighter’s Future Role

This is the vision for the Lockheed Martin F-35 program in 10 years:

    A worldwide fleet of more than 2,000 fighters is in service with a still-growing list of customers. Sales are spurred by a unit procurement price and cost per flight hour equal to or only slightly higher than a fourth-generation fighter. Yet the newly modernized Block 4 fleet of F-35s boasts 25 times more computing power than the version of the aircraft operating today, enabling the software-based onboard  fusion engine to mine data from a far more advanced set of active and passive sensors.

    As the situational awareness in cockpit expands, the pilots have a variety of new weapon options available: the ability to carry six Lockheed Martin AIM-260 or Raytheon AIM-120 advanced medium-range air-to-air missiles internally [emphasis added]; a maritime strike capability of the Joint Strike Missile; and the use of new long-range strike missiles, such as the future Stand-in Attack Weapon (SiAW) internally and possibly a hypersonic cruise missile carried externally. Meanwhile, the Lot 22 F-35 rolling off Lockheed’s assembly line in 2030 also can access a new class of air-launched attritable stores that add vast new sensing capacity, multiply weapon loadouts and, depending on the mission, serve as kinetic options themselves.

    The F-35’s role has already evolved from standard counterair and strike missions. The Army and Navy now use the F-35’s sensor data remotely to guide their interceptors to knock down incoming missiles. The Air Force’s decentralized command-and-control system relies on the F-35’s processing power, sensor data and communication hooks to orchestrate a wider attack in all domains. F-35 pilots still train to perform traditional fighter missions, but the role the aircraft plays defies the vocabulary of the Air Force’s designation system.

A decade may seem too short for such an evolution in one program, but it is possible. Ten years ago, the F-35 was still in crisis mode: With the flight-test fleet grounded for most of 2009, the supply chain was reeling. Ashton Carter, who was then the undersecretary of defense for acquisition, technology and logistics, later acknowledged that proposals to cancel the program had been briefly considered during that period.

To date, Lockheed has delivered more than 500 F-35s to nine countries, with another three countries signed up for still more. The unit flyaway cost of an F-35A will fall to $77.9 million for aircraft delivered in 2022 as part of the 14th lot of yearly production.

In plotting the program’s next decade of development, a similar narrative of early struggles is becoming clear.

    Schedule pressure grows on computer upgrade
    First Block 4 upgrades arrive late and flawed

The F-35 Joint Program Office (JPO) identified the first 66 hardware and software upgrades listed under the Block 4 Follow-on Modernization in a report to Congress in May 2019. The first eight upgrades were due to enter service in 2019, but because of unexpected complications, only one of them—an automatic ground-collision avoidance system—was released to the operational fleet on time. Other improvements, such as an interim full-motion video capability for the Marine Corps’ F-35B fleet, fell behind due to later hardware deliveries, according to a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report released in May.

The JPO also adopted an agile development process for Block 4. The upgrades are still organized in four major increments—Block 4.1, 4.2, 4.3 and 4.4—and smaller batches of new capabilities are released in six-month cycles, a process called Continuous Capability Development and Delivery (C2D2). Lockheed, for example, is scheduled to complete development of 30P5 software in the third quarter of this year, which will be followed by software drops called 30P6 in the first quarter of 2021 and 30P7 in the third quarter of 2021. The agile development method is intended to reduce the scale of delays caused by a release of a large batch of flawed software every two years, but it is not a panacea. As the software from the first C2D2 release entered testing, new problems appeared, such as Block 4 software code causing “issues” for Block 3F functions that had been working, according to the GAO.

The next major advance for the Block 4 program should arrive in 2023. This Block 4.2 configuration will be the first to include Technical Refresh 3 (TR-3) hardware, which includes a new integrated core processor, an aircraft memory system and a panoramic cockpit display system. As the first cockpit computing for the F-35 since Block 3i appeared in 2016, the TR3 will enable a leap in sensing capability, especially for the BAE Systems ASQ-239 electronic-warfare system.

The TR-3 upgrade, however, also is facing development challenges. The F-35 JPO is seeking a $42 million increase in spending on TR-3 in fiscal 2021 to offset higher “technical complexity.”

“Suppliers are challenged to meet a demanding schedule with one holistic hardware-software system; therefore, interim releases of hardware [will] reduce risk and enable parallel software development,” the Air Force said in a budget justification document for fiscal 2021.

The latest F-35 selected acquisition report (SAR), which was released by the Defense Department in early July, reports similar issues with TR-3, citing specifically higher costs due to additional support needed to help one supplier manage the complexity of a field-programmable gate array used in the new processor system. The development of the integrated core processor and the aircraft memory system also are suffering delays, according to the annual SAR.

As the TR-3-equipped Block 4.2 configuration arrives in the fleet, the F-35’s power to sense targets and threats passively should rise enormously. The upgrade also paves the way for a critical update to BAE’s electronic-warfare system, especially the jamming techniques generators embedded in Racks 2A and 2B of the ASQ-239. BAE also plans to upgrade the wing-leading-edge-mounted receivers in Bands 2, 3 and 4 as well as activate new Band 5 receivers from broad spectrum coverage from very low to extremely high radio frequencies. Aided by the more powerful processors introduced by TR-3, the F-35 may be able to develop jamming techniques as it encounters new signals not previously stored in the aircraft’s mission data files. Such a capacity for so-called cognitive electronic warfare is becoming critical as adversaries shift to software-defined radios and frequency-hopping radar arrays.

If the current schedule is maintained, the TR-3 and Block 4.2 upgrades arriving in Lot 15 aircraft will include more than improved computing power. Lockheed is modifying the internal weapons bay to enable the “sidekick” upgrade, which increases the Raytheon AIM-120 missile loadout by 50% to six missiles. As the Lockheed AIM-260 becomes available, the same loadout will become possible with a missile measuring the same length as the AIM-120 but with significantly more range [emphasis added].

The same modification also accommodates the dimensions of the Air Force’s new SiAW missile, which adds a new warhead to the Navy’s Advanced Antiradiation Guided Missile-Extended Range. An Israeli-funded program to add wing-mounted fuel tanks to the F-35’s loadout options also should become available and would increase the range by 25% if the mission does not require minimizing the aircraft’s profile on radar.

By the end of the decade, operating the F-35 could be very different from how the aircraft’s designers in the late 1990s had anticipated. The Air Force’s Skyborg program seeks to introduce a new family of ground- and air-launched aircraft that can serve as autonomous teammates, or wingmen, for F-35 pilots. “Skyborg” itself refers to the development of a new autonomous control system that can be trained to perform a diverse set of missions. The Air Force expects F-35 pilots to use the Skyborg-equipped aircraft much like reusable munitions; in other words, a missile that can be fired and, if no worthy target appears, recovered and used again.

The capabilities envisioned by the F-35’s designers two decades ago are now available in operational aircraft, albeit several years later than originally envisioned and for higher procurement and operating costs. As the next decade unfolds, the JPO and Lockheed will seek to add capabilities that have become defined only within the last decade and to adopt several concepts, including Skyborg and SiAW, that have emerged only recently. The history of the F-35 program is characterized by overpromising and underperforming in the development phase. As Block 4 development transitions from concept to reality, the challenge will be avoiding similar missteps.

Flight Paths logo
Optimistic

    After short-term stagnation, global defense spending resumes growth and Lockheed delivers 4,000 F-35s overall
    Despite early concerns, Lockheed completes the Block 4 modernization program on-time and on-budget

Neutral

    Global defense spending stagnates through 2040, increasing downward pressure on programs of record
    Block 4 modernization suffers some delays and overruns but does not affect aircraft procurement

Pessimistic

    Global defense spending enters a long-term decline, setting off a 1990s-style “procurement holiday” for fighters
    TR-3 Refresh and Block 4 are delayed significantly, with cost overruns leading to further cuts in the procurement budget
https://aviationweek.com/ad-week/lengthy-f-35-upgrade-list-transform-strike-fighters-future-role

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Offline MilEME09

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4592 on: July 21, 2020, 13:46:14 »
"We are called a Battalion, Authorized to be company strength, parade as a platoon, Operating as a section"

Offline MarkOttawa

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4593 on: July 21, 2020, 14:58:34 »
How many F-35s will USAF, USMC, RAF and Royal Navy eventually acquire? Will "attritable" UCAVs cut down numbers needed?

Quote
Rising Pressures Cloud Optimistic F-35 Sales Outlook

Lockheed Martin has marketed the F-35 successfully to 14 countries over nearly 20 years. Subtracting Turkey’s canceled program for 100 jets, Lockheed still boasts commitments from 13 countries to buy nearly 3,220 F-35s, with deliveries projected out to 2046. Three more countries with a combined requirement for about 200 fighters are evaluating the F-35 in competitive tenders, and another five have publicly discussed a long-term interest in acquiring the aircraft.

    U.S. Air Force and Marine Corps send conflicting signals

    UAS and F-15EX increase F-35 competition

That is the good news for the only supersonic, stealthy fighter with a short-takeoff-and-vertical-landing variant on the export market today.

But that otherwise optimistic sales outlook is clouded by resource constraints, shifting priorities and new technological advances that threaten a large portion of the planned orders in the F-35 program of record. Moreover, the recent expulsion of Turkey from the program because of its acquisition of Russian military hardware highlights rising pressure from political interference on high-profile foreign arms sales.

The U.S.-led F-35 Joint Program Office declared in 2009 that total sales of the F-35 could reach 6,000, but more than a decade later government and Lockheed officials prefer to size the global market at around 4,000. Even the more modest projection may depend on maintaining the original orderbook of the U.S. Air Force, the program’s largest customer, with an official requirement for 1,763 F-35As.

Although Air Force leadership remains fully committed, cracks have appeared in the service’s long-term programming. In March, Air Combat Command (ACC) announced a goal to achieve a long-term fighter fleet composed of 60% F-35s and Lockheed F-22s and 40% among Boeing F-15s, Lockheed F-16s and Fairchild Republic A-10s. The Air Force inventory today counts about 2,190 fighters overall, leaving room for a total of about 1,315 F-22s and F-35s combined to achieve the 60% goal. If about 180 F-22s are removed from the equation, the Air Force would be left with a total fleet requirement for 1,135 F-35As [emphasis added].

The Marine Corps, which plans to buy 357 F-35Bs, faces similar pressures. In March, the Marine Corps announced plans to cap F-35B squadrons at 10 aircraft each, eliminating plans to field nine of 14 F-35B squadrons with 16 aircraft. The decision appears to create an inventory surplus of about 54 jets, but the Marines have not made any changes to the program of record [emphasis added].

Similar constraints are visible in other countries. The UK is in the midst of a defense review with officials scrutinizing plans for the Royal Air Force and Royal Navy to acquire a total of 138 F-35Bs, of which only the first 48 are funded so far. Alongside plans to upgrade the Eurofighter Typhoon and develop the Tempest next-generation fighter, the Defense Ministry will have to balance resources carefully [emphasis added].

The military technology advances add further pressure. The U.S. Air Force is developing a new class of low-cost attritable unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), which the service envisions performing as reusable munitions to augment the sensor and weapons capabilities of aircraft such as the F-35. As the technology matures, ACC sees the potential for using swarms of attritable UAS to replace hundreds of the Air Force’s oldest F-16s, which are due to enter retirement in the second half of the decade [emphasis added].

But demand for the F-35 still is growing in other areas. The U.S. government’s recent approval of 105 F-35s for Japan shows how the international program still can expand. Japan originally acquired 42 F-35s in 2014 to replace an aging fleet of McDonnell Douglas F-4s. The newly approved acquisition would expand the F-35 fleet to replace Japan’s oldest F-15s. Israel, meanwhile, already has ordered 50 F-35s. As a political leadership crisis moves toward stability, Israel soon could sign a follow-on order for up to 75 new jets, with the F-35A and F-15EX splitting the deal.

Other countries still are seeking to enter the program. Singapore has been approved by the U.S. to order up to 12 F-35Bs. In January, the prime minister of Greece announced plans to order F-35As after a batch of upgraded F-16s are delivered in 2024. The U.S. government also has named Romania and Spain in Europe as potential F-35 buyers. In the Middle East, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia are busy absorbing new Dassault Rafale and F-15SA jets, respectively, but are likely to consider the F-35 in the second half of the decade.
https://aviationweek.com/ad-week/rising-pressures-cloud-optimistic-f-35-sales-outlook

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4594 on: July 22, 2020, 13:09:28 »
F-35 Propulsion Upgrade Moves Forward Despite Uncertainty

tabilizing the production system and securing a funded, long-term upgrade plan are now the main objectives for Pratt & Whitney’s F135 propulsion system for the Lockheed Martin F-35.

Although first delivered for ground--testing 17 years ago, the F135 remains a lifeline in Pratt’s combat aircraft engines portfolio for new-development funding. The U.S. military engines market is entering an era of transition with great uncertainty for the timing of the next major combat aircraft program.

Enhancement Package replaces “Growth Option”

New F-35 propulsion road map due in six months

the rest of the article at link https://aviationweek.com/ad-week/f-35-propulsion-upgrade-moves-forward-despite-uncertainty?utm_rid=CPEN1000000978507&utm_campaign=24844&utm_medium=email&elq2=669acd5096e1444588a9e1e73c116601

Offline OceanBonfire

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4595 on: July 23, 2020, 16:32:25 »
Quote
Lawmakers pressure Lockheed to pay back Pentagon for F-35 parts problems

Lockheed Martin's F-35 program head on Wednesday refused to commit to fully compensating the U.S. Defense Department for delivering parts not ready to be installed on the jet, which may have resulted in more than $183 million in labor costs.

...


https://www.defensenews.com/air/2020/07/22/lawmakers-put-lockheed-under-pressure-to-pay-back-pentagon-for-f-35-parts-problems/

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The price of the F-35 has been falling, but it could hit a wall soon

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Since 2016, the Defense Department had pushed Lockheed Martin to lower the unit cost for an F-35A conventional takeoff and landing model — which is being purchased by the U.S. Air Force and most international customers — to $80 million per plane by Lot 14.

When the department finalized a deal for Lots 12-14 in October, it announced that it would reach its unit cost goal a year early in Lot 13, with those jets set to roll off the production line in 2021. The price per F-35A is set to lower from $82.4 million in Lot 12 to $79.2 million in Lot 13 down to $77.9 million in Lot 14.

"We're currently entering negotiations for the Lots 15 through 17 contracts," Fick said during the hearing Wednesday.

...


https://www.defensenews.com/industry/2020/07/23/the-price-of-the-f-35-has-been-falling-but-it-could-hit-a-wall-soon/
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Offline MarkOttawa

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4596 on: July 25, 2020, 13:21:53 »
Note USAF F-35s at Eielson are for Pacific Air Forces, not NORAD--that stays with F-22s at Elmendorf of AFNORTH (https://www.1af.acc.af.mil/). Start of an article, lots of images:

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F-35s Nest In Big New Alaskan Facility Marking Strategic Shift For Critical Region
Eielson Air Force Base's huge new F-35 wing will rapidly become one of the U.S. Air Force’s most important units.

he arrival of the first pair of Lockheed Martin F-35A Lightning IIs at Eielson Air Force Base on Apr. 21, 2020, was significant on many levels. This remote installation is located 26 miles southeast of Fairbanks in the interior of Alaska and about 110 miles south of the Arctic Circle. The installation has received huge funding over the past three years to create a massive secure enclave for its new stealthy inhabitants. While the sheer amount of work that has been conducted at Eielson to bring the F-35 into the arsenal of the Pacific Air Forces [emphasis added] is highly evident, the strategic impact on an increasingly important region that the rejuvenated fighter wing will have cannot be understated.

The resident 354th Fighter Wing hasn’t been combat-coded since 2007 when its A-10 Thunderbolt IIs were redistributed to other units. Since then, Eielson has operated a squadron of aggressor F-16s, which provide support for the resident Red Flag Alaska exercise and for the F-22 Raptors based at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, near Anchorage [emphasis added]. Eielson also supports the 168th Air Refueling Group, part of the Alaska Air National Guard, which operates KC-135Rs in support of Pacific Air Forces (PACAF) operations.

Eielson will be home to the U.S. Air Force’s second operational active-duty F-35 wing, the first being the 388th Fighter Wing at Hill Air Force Base in Utah. This emphasizes the strategic importance of Alaska. The 354th will be home to a pair of Lightning squadrons that will operate 54 of the Low observable (LO) stealth fighters by the time deliveries to the base are complete. This target was initially scheduled for December 2021, but is now set for early 2022.

The USAF unveiled its Arctic Strategy on July 21, 2020. It outlines the unique regional role and efforts to optimize air and space capabilities in this area. “The Arctic is among the most strategically significant regions of the world today — the keystone from which the U.S. Air and Space Forces exercise vigilance,” said Secretary of the Air Force Barbara Barrett. “This Arctic Strategy recognizes the immense geostrategic consequence of the region and its critical role for protecting the homeland and projecting global power.”

The strategy outlines four main focus efforts: vigilance in all domains, projecting power through a combat-credible force, cooperation with allies and partners, and preparation for Arctic operations. Combining the combat capability of 5th generation fighters in Alaska with the reach afforded by an organic force of tanker aircraft provides an impressive means to project air power. Eielson’s F-35s will be able to reach the Asia-Pacific or European theaters with relative ease [emphasis added].
https://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone/35062/f-35s-nest-in-massive-new-alaskan-facilities-marking-strategic-shift-for-critical-region

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Online Colin P

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4597 on: July 25, 2020, 16:36:58 »
Hmm a exercise with F35 vs F22, that would be interesting.

Offline tomahawk6

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4598 on: July 26, 2020, 18:01:48 »
The USAF has selected 5 sites in Conus of which 1 will be chosen for foreign sales F35 training. " Those include Terre Haute Regional Airport's Hulman Field, Ind.; Buckley AFB, Colo.; Fort Smith Airport, Ark.; Hulman Field; Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas, and Selfridge Air National Guard Base, Mich."

https://www.stripes.com/news/us/air-force-announces-possible-locations-for-foreign-military-f-35-training-site-1.638776

Online CBH99

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Re: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF)
« Reply #4599 on: July 26, 2020, 18:13:27 »
The USAF has selected 5 sites in Conus of which 1 will be chosen for foreign sales F35 training. " Those include Terre Haute Regional Airport's Hulman Field, Ind.; Buckley AFB, Colo.; Fort Smith Airport, Ark.; Hulman Field; Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, Texas, and Selfridge Air National Guard Base, Mich."

https://www.stripes.com/news/us/air-force-announces-possible-locations-for-foreign-military-f-35-training-site-1.638776


I'm surprised Luke AFB isn't included in that, seeing how it's already the site of F-35 training for USAF and foreign partners thus far.  (Norway, Japan, RAF, Italy.)
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