2010年11月4日木曜日

F35開発さらに遅延

米国防総省当局者が次世代戦闘機F35の開発計画が現行から1~3年遅れる
との見通しを示したと報じた。開発段階の費用も総額約5千億ドルから約
50億ドル増える見積りという。

F35A(空軍仕様)
運用開始時期を2013年から16年に延期
日本仕様はさらに1年遅れる。
遅延理由は、レーダー回避ソフトウエア開発の問題。

F35購入予定
米国    2,457機
国際協力国 730機

英国 初期計画のF35C138機未購入を確認、F35Aを購入予定。
加自由党 F35購入費87億ドルを予算計上せずを公約。

F35B(海兵隊仕様)
2、3年遅れ。
遅延理由は、レーダー回避ソフトウエア開発の問題と
短距離離着陸の技術的問題

F35C(海軍仕様)
運用開始時期を2013年から
遅延理由は、レーダー回避ソフトウエア開発の問題。

防衛省
2011年度予算概算要求でF35の調査費6億8千万円を盛込む。

購入契約を一部破棄する国が、米国を含めて増えてきたようだが、
軍事的優位を目指す国は契約したようだ。
遅延の原因であるレーダー回避ソフトウエア開発の問題とは、機体の
ステルス性のシミュレーションソフトウェアの問題なのだろうか。
そうだとすると、A、B、C共に目標性能が出ないと言うことになる。
フロリダに配属された機体はステルス性能が出ていないのかもしれ
ない。日本仕様にステルス性や爆撃機用ペイロードが装備されない
可能性もある。本当に必要なのだろうか。

F35開発遅延 13ヶ月
イスラエル F35購入


---F35開発さらに1~3年遅れも 日本の機種選定に難題---
2010年11月2日 13時18分
http://www.tokyo-np.co.jp/s/article/2010110201000171.html

 【ワシントン共同】ロイター通信は1日、米国防総省当局者が次世代戦闘機F35の開発計画が現行から1~3年遅れるとの見通しを示したと報じた。開発段階の費用も総額約5千億ドル(約40兆3千億円)から約50億ドル増える見積もりという。
 米空軍は今年3月に空軍仕様のF35Aの運用開始時期を2013年から16年に遅らせたばかり。日本が導入を検討するF35Aはさらに1年遅れるとされる。開発計画の遅れが運用開始時期にどこまで影響するか不明だが、事実なら日本政府の機種選定に難題となるのは間違いない。
 報道によると、ソフトウエアの不具合などが原因となり、F35Aと海軍仕様のF35Cが1年遅れ、垂直離着陸能力を持つ海兵隊仕様のF35Bは2、3年遅れる。
 F35は米国を中心に計9カ国が共同開発。多用途に運用できることやレーダーに感知されないステルス機能が特徴。
 ゲーツ米国防長官は日本政府が選定を進める次期主力戦闘機として導入を推奨。防衛省は11年度予算概算要求でF35の性能情報を得るための調査費6億8千万円を盛り込んでいる。


---UPDATE 1-Lockheed F-35 faces more delays, cost hikes-sources---
Tue, 2nd Nov 2010 02:36
By Andrea Shalal-Esa
http://www.lse.co.uk/FinanceNews.asp?ArticleCode=qdyunzy528d4kv4&ArticleHeadline=UPDATE_1Lockheed_F35_faces_more_delays_cost_hikessources

WASHINGTON, Nov 1 (Reuters) - Lockheed Martin Corp's new F-35 fighter jet may be delayed by up to three years and its development cost could increase by up to $5 billion, sources familiar with the program said on Monday.

Navy Vice Admiral David Venlet briefed Pentagon acquisition chief Ashton Carter on Monday about the draft results of a comprehensive review of the program, said the sources, who were not authorized to speak on the record.

The review was conducted to prepare for a high-level meeting of the Pentagon's Defense Acquisition Board that is scheduled for Nov. 22, the sources said.

The Pentagon has estimated the cost of the F-35 program could reach $382 billion over time, its costliest weapons program ever. The program was restructured earlier this year, adding 13 months to the development phase.

The latest delays stem from problems with software development for the new radar-evading fighter, and technical problems with the short takeoff and landing Marine Corps version of the new fighter, the sources said.

They said the Air Force and Navy versions of the fighter would need an additional year of development, while the Marine Corps version would need two to three years longer.

The cost increase is linked mainly to demands by Pentagon officials for additional testing of the new fighter before the plane can be used on the battlefield, said analyst Loren Thompson of the Virginia-based Lexington Institute.

He said further delays and cost increases in the program would be a setback for Lockheed, given that the F-35 is the company's biggest program.

Pentagon spokeswoman Cheryl Irwin said it was premature to discuss anything about the program.

Lockheed spokesman John Kent said it would be premature to discuss the results of the review until the findings of the Nov. 22 Pentagon meeting are released.

Lockheed shares closed 18 cents higher at $71.47 despite news about the F-35 program.


CRITIC'S CONCERNS

Winslow Wheeler, a budget analyst with the nonpartisan Center for Defense Information, said the latest news underscored his longstanding concerns about the program.

'This airplane should never have happened. It's too expensive, too complex, and too modest performance,' he said. 'It's a cost and performance disaster.'

The United States is co-developing the F-35 with eight foreign partners -- Britain, Italy, the Netherlands, Turkey, Canada, Australia, Denmark and Norway. The U.S. military services are due to buy 2,457 of the new fighters, with the international partners to buy an additional 730 planes.

But rising costs and development delays have begun to erode confidence in the program, especially given budget constraints in many partner countries.

Britain last month announced major cuts in defense spending, and a top military official on Monday confirmed his country would not buy all 138 F-35 fighters initially planned.

'It will be less than the original 138,' General Nicholas Houghton, vice chief of Britain's defense staff, told reporters before a conference in Washington.

He said the final number will depend on many factors still being weighed, including work on a new unmanned combat aerial vehicle, and plans for land-basing new fast jets.

'I don't want to over-specify a figure because the work has not yet been done,' Houghton said.

Canada's opposition Liberal Party last week also said it would scrap a C$9 billion ($8.7 billion) deal to buy the F-35 if it won the next general election, widely expected to be held next year. The minority Conservative government announced the sole-source deal with Lockheed in July but has not yet signed a contract.

Britain's decision to skip buying the Marine Corps version could signal the end of that variant, several analysts said, noting it was experiencing problems with the inlet doors for the lift fan needed to allow short takeoffs and landings.

Houghton said Britain decided to opt for the carrier version being developed for the U.S. Navy instead, because it offered more payload and greater range.

Wheeler said Britain's decision probably also reflected concerns about the rising cost of the short takeoff version, its higher maintenance and procurement costs, and the fact that its testing schedule was furthest behind.

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