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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: A Lost Cause
By MrBlastman on 2/19/2010 3:40:13 PM , Rating: 2
I haven't read a Tom Clancy book since 1990. :( While in a cold-war environment most engagements occur at 20-25+ nautical miles, in an active wartime environment (if it should even happen versus an opponent of sufficient forces to retaliate against us), I guarantee you that the 20-25+ nm engagement envelope will be breached.

I dare say it would be entirely possible for engagements to encroach upon 10-12 nm or closer depending on the mission, threat mix and distance beyond FLOT. The AA-11 can stretch out ot 18 nautical miles and it is heat seeking. Your RWR does not light up and signal a launch of a heat-seaking AAM, only a radar-guided one. Sure, you might see the plane tracking you--that is, if they even target you.

With a heat seeking missile such as the AIM-9X or the AA-11, you need not even have your radar active nor have a target lock. Uncaged seeker heads are beautiful things. Of course, in order to deploy the AA-11 off-boresight you would need to be in high angle override scan mode with a narrow azimuth but a high vertical scan in theory. We don't have these missiles to be sure but it would make sense as you have to supply to the missles flight computer the vector after launch it must turn to to bring the target within its boresight radius.

Oh, and don't think the Russians do not have superior medium range missiles either. They are not shabby in the least. Our missile technology is far from the best in the world in everything. Our Air to Air radar technology though for years has been superior in several ways.

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