2010年8月13日金曜日

F35A Eglin空軍基地配備へ

F35Aは、Eglin空軍基地へ配備されるようだ。
F35Aの地上試験は順調に進み、
U.S.A.F. Chief General Norton Schwartzは、
「今年実施する予定の飛行試験の前の地上試験では、順調に動作。
ストレステストでは、単純な構造的欠陥やF22のようなソフトウェア
再起動問題も無かった」
と言う。
予定では、28回の飛行試験だったが、6月に46回の飛行試験をした。
ローキード・マーチンは、予想価格を1機当たり7600万ドルの2~3割弱。

F35B、F35Cについての進捗状況は、予定が遅れているためかの説明なし。
F35A:空軍向け戦闘機
F35B:海兵隊向け短距離離着陸・垂直着陸戦闘機 サブシステム失敗による遅延
F35C:海軍向け艦載戦闘機

米空軍は、F35A配備基地をArizona、Florida、Utah、Vermontとした。
訓練基地は、Luke空軍基地(Arizona)。
8/11に59台のF35AをEglin空軍基地に配備予定(Florida)。

F35Aは、飛行試験が終わったようで、Eglin空軍基地に59台配備される予定。
型式は不明だが、予想価格が、F22をかなり超えそうだ。

F35 核兵器搭載へ


F35 Visits Eglin AFB


F-22 Demo at EGLIN AFB


First two F-35A JSFs ferry to Edwards AFB

---Schwartz: Optimism growing on F-35---
By John Reed - Staff writer
Posted : Friday Aug 6, 2010 10:36:46 EDT
http://www.airforcetimes.com/news/2010/08/defense_schwartz_f35_080410/

Air Force chief Gen. Norton Schwartz is considerably “more optimistic” than he was this spring about the future of the F-35 Lightning II program given the significant progress being made on the plane’s test program.

“I am more confident than I was, to be sure,” about the F-35A - the Joint Strike Fighter version his service will fly - due to a recent string of testing successes with the jet, Schwartz said during a Wednesday meeting with the editorial staff of Defense News and Air Force Times.

The four-star’s confidence in the embattled program has been boosted because the plane is considerably ahead of its flight test schedule for this year. Furthermore, it hasn’t had a single structural failure during stress testing and has not experienced the “software reboot” problems that plagued the F-22 Raptor at a similar phase in its development, said Schwartz.

“I think we flew 46 [test] sorties in June, when 28 were scheduled; another indication that things are beginning to accelerate,” he said.

Most importantly, said Schwartz, price negotiations for the upcoming purchase of 32 low rate initial production jets, known as LRIP-4, “give me some confidence that we’re on a good recovery path.”

While the Air Force chief declined to discuss specifics of the negotiations, officials from F-35-maker Lockheed Martin have repeatedly said the final price tag for LRIP-4 jets will be between 20 to 30 percent below December 2009 Pentagon predictions that the planes will cost $76 million apiece.

Many F-35 watchers see LRIP-4 as crucial because the fixed-price contract commits Lockheed to meeting the price it has negotiated with the Pentagon for the jets. If the company can deliver the planes for the price it quoted, it will assuage F-35 doubters in Congress and cash-strapped allies who will be buying the jet, analysts have said. If the price of the jets ends up being as high as the Pentagon estimates, nations may buy fewer F-35s than anticipated, which will increase the per-plane price in process called an acquisition death spiral.

Schwartz did not mention progress on the Navy’s version of the jet, the F-35C or the Marine Corps’ F-35B short takeoff and vertical landing version of the fighter. While the F-35C is also doing well in flight tests, the B-model jet has been lagging behind in its flight test schedule this year, according to Lockheed officials.


---Air Force General Schwartz Optimistic on F-35 Program---
Shane McGlaun - August 5, 2010 9:54 AM
http://www.dailytech.com/Air+Force+General+Schwartz+Optimistic+on+F35+Program/article19269c.htm

Air Force F-35A is ahead of test schedule

After long running worries that have surround the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program, officials in the U.S. military are now seeing reasons to be optimistic about the program. Defense News reports that Air Force General Norman Schwartz has said that he is considerably "more optimistic" now that he was in months past about the F-35 program.

Schwartz is more optimistic because the version of the F-35 that will be flown by the Air Force, known as the F-35A, is actually ahead of its test schedule. Another reason for optimism is that the F-35 has not had a structural failure during testing and no significant software issues have appeared. Software issues plagued the F-22 Raptor during similar sections of its flight-testing program and development.

According to Swartz, the F-35A flew 46 test flights in June when the plane was only scheduled for 28 test flights. The ability of the plane to fly more test sorties than scheduled means that there have been no significant issues. Swartz also told Defense News that price negotiations for 32 LRIP-4 initial production jets were going well. The program will get a significant boost if the F-35 can be brought in at the price originally offered for the aircraft rather than the significantly inflated costs that some have been predicting.

The DOD previously estimated that the F-35 program could end up costing as much as $382 billion. The prediction was that the aircraft could come in as high as $76 million each. Lockheed Martin has stated before that the aircraft would be offered for 20% to 30% less than that prediction. Swartz offered no details on how other versions of the F-35 for the Marines and Navy were progressing.

The Marine STOVL F-35B version of the aircraft is behind schedule due to issues with subsystem failures. The development of the F-35 aircraft is still behind schedule overall and a recent report suggests that it should take no longer than seven years to develop a new weapon system.


---Hill, Luke among bases hosting F-35 fighters---
By Bob Christie and John Miller - The Associated Press
Posted : Friday Jul 30, 2010 11:55:39 EDT
http://www.airforcetimes.com/news/2010/07/ap_airforce_f35_072910/

PHOENIX - The Air Force has chosen bases in Arizona, Florida, Utah and Vermont as homes for the military’s F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, prompting applause from officials banking on the pricey new combat jets to supercharge their communities’ economies.

Operational missions of the single-engine jets would go to Hill Air Force Base, Utah, and the Burlington Air Guard Station, Vt., the Air Force said Thursday. For training, the Air Force recommended Luke Air Force Base, Ariz. The Air Force also announced Wednesday that 59 F-35 jets would be stationed at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla.

The announcement of these bases as “preferred alternatives” is a disappointment for seven bases passed over during this round of selections, including sites in Idaho, Arizona, New Mexico, Florida and South Carolina.

But Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., was jubilant at the inclusion of Luke, located in Phoenix suburbs. Military backers there have waged a vocal campaign to win the jets, as have groups in other states where bases are trying to preserve their relevance as fleets of aging F-15 and F-16 fighters edge toward the scrap yard.

“The unparalleled capabilities inherent to Arizona - from the Barry M. Goldwater Range, to great flying weather, and strong support from state and local governments and communities - serve to provide the best environment and the finest quality of life for our military personnel training in the Air Force’s next generation fighter,” McCain said.

The Defense Department said Thursday’s basing announcement covers 250 to 300 F-35 aircraft. According to McCain, three squadrons with dozens of aircraft would be based at Luke if the Air Force finalizes its decision.

So far, Lockheed Martin Corp. has built just a handful of roughly 2,400 F-35s that the United States says it wants to buy, but the plane’s cost already has more than doubled to some $113 million apiece.

Other bases under consideration included Mountain Home Air Force Base and Gowen Field in Idaho; Tucson International Airport, Ariz.; Holloman Air Force Base, N.M.; Jacksonville Air Guard Station, Fla.; and Shaw Air Force Base and McEntire Air Guard Base in South Carolina.

Military officials said Thursday’s announcement isn’t cast in stone.

Kathleen Ferguson, deputy assistant secretary of the Air Force for installations, said the other sites - she called them “reasonable alternatives” - will continue to be evaluated as part of environmental studies.

Maj. Gen. Stanhope Spears, National Guard adjutant general for South Carolina, said he was disappointed with the announcement, but the McEntire base is still in the running.

“Right now, we don’t have specifics on when additional candidate bases will be announced,” Spears said. “We currently have the newest and most capable F-16s in the United States Air Force and will continue to be an elite fighting force.”

In Idaho, officials counting on a $1 billion boost to the state’s economy from up to 3,000 new personnel and 144 planes at two sites were taking heart in the military’s plans to eventually buy thousands of F-35s.

“Given the number of F-35s our nation is going to be building, this isn’t the end of the story,” said John Revere, a spokesman for Rep. Mike Simpson, R-Idaho. “Congressman Simpson firmly believes Gowen Field and Mountain Home remain strong contenders for future siting decisions.”

Gowen got some consolation when the Defense Department named it a finalist for a C-27J Spartan cargo plane operational mission. The other training-mission finalist for the twin-engine plane is Great Falls, Mont.

The Air Force also announced Thursday that Holloman was being transitioned to an F-16 training mission, with the capacity to take on two squadrons.

---

Miller reported from Boise, Idaho. Associated Press writer Susanne M. Schafer in Columbia, S.C., also contributed to this report.

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