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The government and Lockheed Martin are scrambling to get back on schedule while fixing the overbudget project

The Pentagon confirmed a one-year delay of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program, with Deputy Defense Secretary Bill Lynn facing increased pressure to get spending under control on the project.

"The development was originally projected to last an additional 30 months; we think with the additional test aircraft it will be closer to a delay of about 12 or 13 months, but I can't give you the cost numbers," according to Lynn's statement to the media.

Pentagon officials didn't say if this one-year delay will push back final release dates, but it likely will, military experts have noted. 

The Marine Corps is expected to receive the first batch of F-35s in two years, while the Air Force and Navy are expected to receive the next-generation fighter aircraft in 2013 and 2014.  Prior to Lynn's recent announcement, Lockheed Martin officials noted they were about six months behind schedule, but still expect to be able to meet the USMC release date.

Last November, a report said the program is drastically overbudget and behind schedule, which led the government to rethink its strategy moving forward.  Actual demand for the aircraft remains unknown, but there have been at least 2,500 orders placed for the U.S. military branches, with several other nations also expected to receive the aircraft in years to come.

Due to costly delays and budget miscues, the DOD will also withhold $614 million that will eventually be paid to Lockheed Martin.

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RE: True F-14 successor?
By jonmcc33 on 2/19/2010 10:18:39 AM , Rating: -1
The F-14 has been replaced for years. It was replaced by the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet in 2006.

The F-35C is replacing the F/A-18 Hornet. That makes sense because the F/A-18 is basically the USAF's rejected YF-17. The YF-17 lost out to the F-16 which is being replaced by the F-35A.

Supposedly the F-35A will also replace the A-10 but there is no replacing a plane that can fly with half a wing missing and that can be easily repaired with some scrap metal on the combat zone. I do not think that the F-35A can withstand the damage by being a close air support aircraft.

RE: True F-14 successor?
By Manch on 2/19/2010 10:31:59 AM , Rating: 2
The F-18 is not a YF-17. They only thing they ever shared other than a similar look is the the support structure under the cockpit. Everything else was redesigned for the F-18 program

RE: True F-14 successor?
By dgingeri on 2/19/2010 10:45:43 AM , Rating: 2
Although they look very, very similar, they are completely different, apparently. I wonder why they kept the general shape and yet redesigned the whole thing?

look at the pics. they are almost completely the same shape externally. Yet, apparently, the interior is completely different. Engineers can be weird sometimes.

RE: True F-14 successor?
By johnsonx on 2/19/2010 11:08:35 AM , Rating: 2
All three of you are right. Wikipedia's quote:
The Navy fought for and won permission to develop an aircraft based on the YF-17. Since the LWF did not share the design requirements of the VFAX, the Navy asked McDonnell Douglas and Northrop to design a new aircraft around the configuration and design principles of the YF-17. The new aircraft, designated the F-18, shared not a single essential dimension or primary structure with the YF-17.

So, yes, the F/A-18 is obviously an evolution of the YF-17, which did lose out to the YF-16 in the Air Force competition (which doesn't make it a lesser aircraft... the F-16 simply wasn't a good fit for carrier duty). Yes again, the F/A-18 is also a completely different aircraft.

RE: True F-14 successor?
By jonmcc33 on 2/19/2010 12:43:32 PM , Rating: 1

"Although it lost the LWF competition to the F-16, the YF-17 was selected for the new VFAX specification. In enlarged form, the F/A-18 Hornet was adopted by the United States Navy and United States Marine Corps..."

Are you sure about that?

RE: True F-14 successor?
By Manch on 2/19/2010 12:48:24 PM , Rating: 2
Yes. The YF-17 was a starting point but by the time the F-18 came to fruition pretty much every aspect of the aircraft was changed. The quote from the wikipedia link you mention is very much an over simplification. While they look very similar from a distance if put side by side the differences become very apparent.

I would be wary of using wikipedia as "proof" try Janes Defence or another publication with more credibility.

RE: True F-14 successor?
By jonmcc33 on 2/19/10, Rating: 0
"The whole principle [of censorship] is wrong. It's like demanding that grown men live on skim milk because the baby can't have steak." -- Robert Heinlein
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