News

Some good news on the F-35

Discussion in 'AviatorChat.com' started by DF1, Mar 1, 2016.

  1. To remove this ad click here.

  2. Hannibal308

    Hannibal308 F1 Rookie
    Rossa Subscribed

    Jan 3, 2012
    4,361
    Kahuku / Cottonwood
    Full Name:
    Will
    Hmmmm...I'm not so sure...

    That said, I'm not a Lightning driver. The Lightning drivers with whom I drink fairly regularly still gripe incessently about the plane. I still think flying a new plane plays a role in the excitement. Like a chick who pays $8K for a boob job feels like she has to love them even if they are all crooked and wierd looking. That's the sense I get from my bros who have moved from the Viper to the F-35.
     
  3. norcal2

    norcal2 F1 Veteran
    Silver Subscribed

    More selling.....

    "The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter isn’t expected to see combat this year, but Pentagon officials have laid on an intensive schedule of airshows and other events meant to improve the public’s perception of the late and overbudget jet.
    Program officials are betting that the F-35 has finally overcome a decade of woes that sent its price tag billions of dollars over budget and made it years late to the battlefield. Now they want to repair the plane’s public image.
    “We do have a perception problem and we do have an information gap there,” Lt. Gen. Christopher Bogdan, the program manager, told lawmakers Wednesday at a House Armed Services Tactical Air and Land Forces Subcommittee hearing.
    Chairman Rep. Mike Turner, R-Ohio, had these feelings: “Obviously, we have not done a very good job of communicating the importance of the F-35 and its capability and why it’s necessary.”
    But the plane has more than an image problem; it has real problems. The escape system doesn’t work right, software is still buggy, and its complex logistics system is behind schedule, which could cause the plane to miss the Air Force’s battle-ready date of Aug. 1. The Marines said their F-35s were ready for war last year, but the Air Force has a more demanding set of tests to pass.
    Still, many Pentagon officials say the program has turned a corner, declaring that most serious issues are behind them and that fixes are in place for existing problems. The project has largely been on budget and schedule since 2010, production is increasing each year, and the jet’s price tag is shrinking."

    But the plane still has a ways to go before it’s ready to handle its entire mission set. Meanwhile, it can’t seem to shake its reputation as the world’s most expensive lemon.
    “I have never been associated with a program in my 25-plus years of acquisition where the public perception and the reality are so different,” Bogdan argued to Congress. “Part of that is our problem for not telling the story. But part of it is because the program is so big, that every minor issue becomes a big issue.”
    When word surfaced last June that an F-35 lost a dogfight to an old F-16, one of the planes it is supposed to replace, the Internet exploded with criticism. Program officials fired back that the F-35 is designed to spot and shoot down enemy aircraft from far away using special sensors and long-range missiles.
    “It sometimes is difficult to explain to the public how air warfare is changing and how it’s not a turn-and-burn airplane that looks really cool at an airshow that’s going to win the fight for the United States when we go into combat in the next 20 or 30 years,” Bogdan said.
    Pentagon officials and experts say the F-35 and other stealth planes like the Air Force’s B-21 bomber are needed down the road because older warplanes cannot compete with advanced ground-launched missiles and other weapons being built by China and Russia.
    “Our legacy airplanes now and in the future will not survive the threat environments we know we are going to have to face,” Bogdan said. “No matter how much you upgrade them and how much you put into them, eventually, they will not survive.”
    The public appears unconvinced. Turner cited a University of Maryland study that found nearly 60 percent of Ohio voters favored upgrading older F-15s and F-16s instead of buying new F-35s.
    Bogdan, who has often said that he’s not a salesman for the plane, seems to be changing his tune.
    “I think getting out there and telling the story is part of what we need to continue to do,” he said. “I also think we need to continue to base things on fact, and when people out there don’t have the facts, then it’s my job and my team’s job to correct the record for that.”
    So F-35s, which are now based at eight U.S. airfields, are hitting the airshow circuit. Over the next nine months, an Air Force F-35 will fly at 12 public events, starting next week at Arizona’s Luke Air Force Base. Other stops will include New York, Chicago, Baltimore, and smaller communities near military bases. Some of the events will pair the fifth-generation fighter with historic warbirds for the fan-thrilling flybys called “Heritage Flights.” There’s even a flashy YouTube video introducing the 11 crew members on the F-35’s Heritage Flight. The new jet won’t be doing any aerobatics, officials said, just flying past the crowd with the likes of P-38 Lightnings and P-51 Mustangs on its wings.
    It will cost the Air Force $345,000 to stand up the Heritage Flight, according to a service spokeswoman at Luke Air Force Base, where the plane is based.
    That figure covers travel costs for the crew, but not the jet itself, which consumes some $6,000 per flying hour in fuel and maintenance, according to Maj. Genieve David, a spokeswoman at the Air Force’s Air Combat Command.
    The Air Force Heritage Flight Foundation pays for a portion of the flights, she said.
    “The F-35 participation comes at a minimal/reduced cost to the taxpayers based on the costs associated with flying hours and where applicable, open house/air show funding,” David said.
    The most anticipated public showing will come in July when the U.S. Air Force, Marine Corps, and Royal Air Force will bring five F-35s to the Farnborough International Airshow and Royal International Air Tattoo in England, one of the largest air shows and aerospace industry events in the world. The jet missed its planned Farnborough debut in 2014 after an engine fire grounded the entire fleet of F-35s.
    The Dutch plan to bring their own two F-35s to the Netherlands in June for two weeks “to introduce the airplane to their public, to talk about it and to talk about why the airplane is needed for them,” Bogdan said.
    It’s hardly rare for the Air Force to send its newest jets to perform at air shows; service officials say such appearances boost recruitment and public support. This year, they’re also hoping to change the public’s mind."
     
  4. tazandjan

    tazandjan Three Time F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa Owner

    Jul 19, 2008
    33,604
    Clarksville, Tennessee
    Full Name:
    Terry H Phillips
    The Marines have already reached IOC and the AF is scheduled to do so this year. Progress is being made. Perfect complement to the F-22A, if only we had 730 F-22As. Unfortunately means the F-35A will roll into the air-to-air role more than originally planned, instead of concentrating on SEAD and OCA.
     
  5. Tcar

    Tcar F1 Rookie

    Need more F-22's.
     
  6. To remove this ad click here.

  7. Wade

    Wade Three Time F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    Mar 31, 2006
    32,194
    East Central, FL
    Full Name:
    Wade O.
    LOL! :D
     
  8. ralfabco

    ralfabco Two Time F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa

    Mar 1, 2002
    23,187
    banana republic of america
    Full Name:
    Israel Beiteinu
    I believe the tooling was destroyed ? In addition, the small sub-contractors have moved on.
     
  9. tazandjan

    tazandjan Three Time F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa Owner

    Jul 19, 2008
    33,604
    Clarksville, Tennessee
    Full Name:
    Terry H Phillips
    The ATF/F-22A was designed with 1980s and early 90s technology, so would need to be updated significantly. Probably cheaper to start over. L-M has a 6th gen fighter in the design phase, but USAF needs to finish funding B-21, F-35, and KC-46 first. We will definitely need a new air superiority fighter before too long. Something else for McCain to target. He has really screwed up USAF's long range plans by killing both the B-2A and the F-22A. He has cost the taxpayer a fortune.
     
  10. Gatorrari

    Gatorrari F1 World Champ
    Silver Subscribed

    Feb 27, 2004
    14,116
    Georgia
    Full Name:
    Jim Pernikoff
    I think that William Gates was more responsible for killing the F-22 than anyone in Congress.
     
  11. To remove this ad click here.

  12. GermanyBound

    GermanyBound Rookie

    Feb 4, 2015
    20
    Tazandjan - what do you honestly think of these "multi-roll" aircraft? With the F-16, I heard the "self-escorting" role so many times I got sick to my stomach. Think about it, for it to defend itself, it has to get rid of the ordnance to maneuver - hence they are defeated because they cannot bomb their primary target. Same with the F-15E and the F/A-18 Super Hornets.

    Shouldn't we be building smaller, more role-specific aircraft that can be built in larger numbers than bigger, "jack of all trades, master of none" aircraft?
     
  13. tazandjan

    tazandjan Three Time F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa Owner

    Jul 19, 2008
    33,604
    Clarksville, Tennessee
    Full Name:
    Terry H Phillips
    Never has worked. The YF-16 and YF-17 were supposed to be lightweight fighters, but that is not what the Navy and AF needed. They needed an F-4 replacement. We got the F-16 and the Navy got the F/A-18. General Dynamics stated that if they knew how we would end up using the F-16, the design would have been different. Same thing happened to the F-104, from a clear air interceptor with AIM-9s to the F-104G and F-104S that were going to drop nukes on the Soviet Union. Not new, look at how we ended up using the P-47 in Europe and the P/F-51 in Korea. We just cannot afford the dozens of fighter types we had in the 50s and 60s and no longer have the force to support them.
     
  14. solofast

    solofast Formula 3

    Oct 8, 2007
    1,773
    Indianapolis
    Unfortunately you're both right. The role of aircraft, and in particularly air superiority aircraft always evolves into something it was never designed for. Aircraft that are great at yanking and banking aren't generally as stealthy and tend to be poor in the ground attack role because they are too fast and aren't built for that mission originally.

    The prevailing wisdom is that once we "sweep the sky" of the bad guys then we need to have the capability to do CAS or ground attack with the platform since we can't afford to "just let them sit there" when that part of the program is done. Problem is to add that additional capability to the system just builds a camel when you really wanted a horse. It'll work ok, but it ends up not being a very good horse. The F-35 is living proof that trying to do too much with one platform is a bad idea. Not say'n that it can't work, it will eventually, but by the time you spend all the money you'd probably be better off with doing it right once for each mission.

    I think the only systems I can think of that didn't evolve into a doing totally different missions was the A-10 and B-2, both are pretty specialized aircraft. The F-15 started as an air superiority fighter and ended up with the Strike Eagle... The F-16 was a "lightweight fighter" and now drops tons of bombs on each mission. The B-1 mission has evolved into doing a bunch of things it was never intended to do. Heck, we now have F-18's as tankers.. WTF sense does that make???

    It's kinda like "when all you've got is a hammer, everything looks like a nail"... The cost of developing a new system is so high now a days, that there is no such thing as a "new start".. So since there is no money to do it right, they adapt the closest thing they can, and the system isn't very good, but it does the job. P-51's did a lot of ground attack work but they were a lot more vulnerable to ground fire than a P-47 because of the liquid cooling system and some guys didn't get home where they would have in a system more suited for the role. In a real shooting war it's better to have the right weapon. In a "cold" war it is more about perception, does your enemy think you can do it so that there is a deterrent, rather than having to actually do it.
     
  15. Tim Wells

    Tim Wells Formula Junior

    Dec 31, 2009
    392
    Dallas, GA
    Full Name:
    Tim Wells
    All the tooling was moved West and stored, not destroyed. And Tazz, just for the record, there's no such thing as an F-22A. In the testing phase they were called the FA-22 and when it went full production the A was dropped and it was termed F-22. I figure that is where you keep getting that A from. In fact I think they were still calling them FA's when we were doing mods on them in 03'-04' thereabouts. Got some stickers around here someplace to that effect.
     
  16. beast

    beast F1 Veteran

    May 31, 2003
    8,965
    Lewisville, TX
    Full Name:
    Rob Guess
    IIRC the official designation is F-22A with the "A" is the variant of the F-22. If in the future the Air Force does a major upgrade to the air frame it will be re designated an F-22B or C. When the AF upgraded the A-10A to a digital cockpit and such it became the A-10C even though it started out as the A-10A.
     
  17. Gatorrari

    Gatorrari F1 World Champ
    Silver Subscribed

    Feb 27, 2004
    14,116
    Georgia
    Full Name:
    Jim Pernikoff
    The F-22B designation has already been used, for the stillborn two-seat variant, so an upgraded variant would have to be the F-22C.
     
  18. tazandjan

    tazandjan Three Time F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa Owner

    Jul 19, 2008
    33,604
    Clarksville, Tennessee
    Full Name:
    Terry H Phillips
    Tim- Sorry, but the operational F-22s are all F-22A models. When USAF was doing a sales pitch on the aircraft it was temporarily called the F/A-22, but after McCain and cronies killed the program at 188 aircraft, USAF said screw you and went back to F-22A.

    There was a proposed FB-22, a stretched version of the basic design for use as a bridge to the next manned bomber, now called the B-21. Never went anywhere because it assumed full production of the F-22A.

    Funny thing is, the only combat role for the F-22A so far has been air-to-ground, not air-to-air.
     
  19. Hannibal308

    Hannibal308 F1 Rookie
    Rossa Subscribed

    Jan 3, 2012
    4,361
    Kahuku / Cottonwood
    Full Name:
    Will
    The F-16 is extemely adept at "self-escorting," not that that is a doctrine per se. We always flew 2x2 (2 long range and 2 short range air-to-air missiles) with all of our bombs...never heard of a viper dropping its load of bombs in combat in order to kill a bad guy air-to-air. F-16s have more air to air kills than F-15s and many were done with bombs still hanging. No one is going to drop his bombs early unless pitching back into a fight after a radar defense or hitting the merge against something with more capability than most aircraft we come up against. So the notion of us needing to lose our bombs to defend ourselves is entirely erroneous.
     
  20. jcurry

    jcurry F1 World Champ
    Silver Subscribed

    Jan 16, 2012
    14,250
    Lk Stevens, WA
    Full Name:
    Jim
    I think the 'most aircraft we come up against' is the critical point. To date have USAF F-16's ever had to operate against comparable generation air-to-air foes operated by competent forces?
     
  21. jcurry

    jcurry F1 World Champ
    Silver Subscribed

    Jan 16, 2012
    14,250
    Lk Stevens, WA
    Full Name:
    Jim
    Of course we all know that a suffix 'A' is a serialization of a model, while the prefix is a type designation. Sadly we'll never see a F-22C.
     
  22. Hannibal308

    Hannibal308 F1 Rookie
    Rossa Subscribed

    Jan 3, 2012
    4,361
    Kahuku / Cottonwood
    Full Name:
    Will
    Ummm...never (MiG-29s but with dumb-@$$ pilots) That wasn't the point, however. I was just pointing out that we don't dump ordinance as soon as it looks like a fight. I pointed out the general criteria for jetting ordinance and that would be pretty much last seconds before a visual merge with a very capable enemy or sometime during radar defensive maneuvers with an equally capable adversary. Incidentally, we practiced this every damn day...against ourselves as the capabale adversaries, and often took the majority of the flight on to drop bombs on target. In a war against the commies it might be a bit tougher, but in no case will you find American fighter pilots hiking up their skirts and turning tail instead of taking on a target.
     
  23. GermanyBound

    GermanyBound Rookie

    Feb 4, 2015
    20
    So if you are bounced by a couple of Eagles or Flankers while carrying bomb loads that would reduce the amount of Gs you would pull, you still would carry the ordnance while yanking and banking? I have always been told that if you are going to be in a knife fight, you do whatever you need to do to make it so you can maneuver.
     
  24. GermanyBound

    GermanyBound Rookie

    Feb 4, 2015
    20
    The places I read about it was with the Israelis over the Beqaa Valley in Lebanon. They had to dump ordnance to dogfight some Migs or Sukhois. Maybe the writings I read were one of those notorious bs stories.

    Most of my flight time has been in C-152, C-337s, Super Cubs and OV-1s. I haven't had the need to think about the need to yank and bank at the level of a Falconer.
     
  25. Tim Wells

    Tim Wells Formula Junior

    Dec 31, 2009
    392
    Dallas, GA
    Full Name:
    Tim Wells
    News to me! I helped build all but the first 13 of them and have never heard them called F-22A. Not by the company, not by the active duty pilots who picked them up for delivery, not by the test pilots; both company and DCMA/Active duty pilots, and not the crew chiefs they send with the ones we get back here for RCS testing on a periodic basis. I guess one could assume they're A models but no blueprint ever had that on it.

    There was never a two seat version built, no need for it and never will be. I'm afraid all we have is all we ever will have. I sure would love to be wrong on that one though.
     
  26. tazandjan

    tazandjan Three Time F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa Owner

    Jul 19, 2008
    33,604
    Clarksville, Tennessee
    Full Name:
    Terry H Phillips
    Tim- That is because you left before it happened. Here is a quote from the official USAF F-22 Fact Sheet:

    "The program received approval to enter low rate initial production in 2001. Initial operational and test evaluation by the Air Force Operational Test and Evaluation Center was successfully completed in 2004. Based on maturity of design and other factors the program received approval for full rate production in 2005. Air Education and Training Command, Air Combat Command and Pacific Air Forces are the primary Air Force organizations flying the F-22. The aircraft designation was the F/A-22 for a short time before being renamed F-22A in December 2005."

    I was on the AFOTEC Test Team for the ATF/F-22 in the 1990s, so have kept pretty close tabs on the program. You can look up the designation in Air Force Magazine's Almanac, too.

    I would love to see them reopen F-22 production, too, but unlikely to happen unless something drastic happens.
     
  27. zackspeed

    zackspeed Karting

    Nov 4, 2003
    67
    AZ
    Full Name:
    Zack
    Back to the F-35...

    I live in a direct line with the runway at Luke AFB in Glendale AZ where the Air Force is training pilots in the plane. They fly over my home all the time. They have a much deeper more powerful sound than the F-16s which are also always flying over. Today I was at the Luke air show and got to speak to an F-35 driver and my son asked him what was the highest speed was he had flown the plane at and he said that they were under an operational speed limit of mach 1.2 or 700 knots. I asked him why and he said he didn't know the reason, he just does what he's told. He did say that he had flown the F-16 at mach 2.

    Can anyone tell me why they aren't alowed to fly any faster? I'm sure they're still working bugs out of an extraordinarily complicated plane. Are pilots that are switching from the F16 to the 35 just dealing with transitioning from a product that has matured for 40 years?
     

Share This Page