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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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What is the point of F-35?
By corduroygt on 2/19/2010 11:13:34 AM , Rating: 2
F-22 had already been developed, was it that hard to make bombs that will fit it, or in the worst case carried externally? Was it hard to change the RAM coating to something more easily maintained as technology improved? Was it hard to make an export version without powerful radar, no RAM, and no TVC for significantly cheaper?
Why spend all that money to develop another aircraft from scratch?




RE: What is the point of F-35?
By stmok on 2/19/2010 11:47:07 AM , Rating: 2
The F-22 has technologies that the US does not want in anybody else's hands. (US Govt has banned this plane from export). Its role is to totally dominate the air; so they need to keep that advantage from a technology perspective.

International customers like Japan, Israel, Saudi Arabia, etc didn't want a cut down variant of the F-22. They wanted the full thing like they received with the F-15. (This wasn't going to happen.)

The F-35 is more like a budget stealth platform. The project tried to lower its costs by getting many different International partners. Its OK'ed for export as it doesn't have the latest top end technologies found in the F-22. (Its better than 4th/4.5th generation fighters, but still below the F-22.)

In effect, the F-22 is like the Core i7 (Gulftown). While the F-35 is like the Core i5-6xx (Clarkdale).


RE: What is the point of F-35?
By jonmcc33 on 2/19/2010 2:04:52 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The F-22 has technologies that the US does not want in anybody else's hands. (US Govt has banned this plane from export). Its role is to totally dominate the air; so they need to keep that advantage from a technology perspective.


Exactly! The F-22A is US only! No other country has them.

quote:
In effect, the F-22 is like the Core i7 (Gulftown). While the F-35 is like the Core i5-6xx (Clarkdale).


Nice way to make it geek for IT people to understand. ;-)


RE: What is the point of F-35?
By Manch on 2/19/2010 3:15:34 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
International customers like Japan, Israel, Saudi Arabia, etc didn't want a cut down variant of the F-22. They wanted the full thing like they received with the F-15. (This wasn't going to happen.)


The F-15J that Japan recieved is actually the same as the F-15 Block A's but with some custom avionics developed by Japan themselves (See also Japan F-2). The "J" designation stands for Japan and they're manufactered by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. Saudi recieved similar platforms but there's were manufactured by us. Israel recieves more current blocks but still does not recieve the latest and greatest versions of the platforms.


RE: What is the point of F-35?
By corduroygt on 2/19/2010 4:48:48 PM , Rating: 2
But the F-35 itself is a watered down F-22 with ground attack capabilities. Why couldn't we just water down the F-22 and sell it, I bet it'd be cheaper than the F-35, and more capable to boot.


RE: What is the point of F-35?
By Aloonatic on 2/19/2010 5:35:14 PM , Rating: 2
What's the point? Britain won't have anything to put on its new carriers if it doesn't get made.


RE: What is the point of F-35?
By FITCamaro on 2/20/2010 12:54:36 AM , Rating: 2
F35 development started before F22 was finished being developed. Both are needed. But we should have bought more F22s.

And there are no external hard points on the F22 to mount bombs on. And its not like you can just add them. Nor would you want to since it would ruin the F22s stealth abilities. Thats the whole point of having all its weapons carried internally.

In the end we're probably not going to get very many F35s either. Because the Democrats will say the same shit they did with the F22. "We don't need them"


RE: What is the point of F-35?
By MadMan007 on 2/21/2010 6:24:36 AM , Rating: 2
Why do you have to be stupid and make it political? I recall it being pointed out multiple times in previous F-22 articles that the F-22 procurement was scaled back under Bush, on top of that don't forget that Gates was Bush's SecDef appointee.

I'm with Amiga500 on this although I don't see lasers as the panacea but rather UCAVs. I am willing to bet that there is some secret sh*t none of us know about that will make manned aircraft obsolete within 15 years...the rediculously long development time of the F-22 and F-35 didn't help either.


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