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Ozair
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Sun Jun 07, 2020 2:02 am

Norway has conducted testing of the comparability of the F-35 with the runway arrestor system fitted at Orland and other Norwegian Air Force runways.

This is how scientists filmed the F-35's high-speed camera emergency braking solution.



Norwegian F-16 and F-35 also have such a hook and each end of Norwegian military airports has installed ropes called Runway Arresting Gear (RAG). RAG is not in daily use, but is the last hope for being able to stop an aircraft in an emergency, such as if brakes and brake shield fail.


...

The system of brake cables and brake hook at the Ørland air station is already approved and in use for the F-16, but Defense materials must make a separate evaluation of the system for the F-35.

...

https://www.ffi.no/aktuelt/nyheter/nest ... KRkNWZe0gg

Image

A video of the testing is available here, https://vimeo.com/426174900
 
889091
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Sun Jun 07, 2020 12:03 pm

Ozair wrote:
889091 wrote:

That looked like an old school Nimitz class with the traditional steam catapult. Have they launched it off the electromagnetic cat on the new Ford class carrier yet?

Not yet. The F-35C testing was completed on the USS Nimitz and USS George Washington with the USS Carl Vinson scheduled for the first F-35C deployment in 2021. The USS Gerald R Ford isn't yet capable of operating the F-35C, there are a few modifications that need to occur first.

Shouldn't be an issue launching the F-35C off the Ford though, with the ability to alter the power of the EM cat it should actually result in a longer life for most airframes as the launch stress will be less.

Airframes tested to date on the Ford;

The first-in-class aircraft carrier USS Gerald R. Ford has completed compatibility testing with five different airframes over the course of a 16-day trial sailing.

The testing phase included underway catapult launches and arrested landings for the T-45 Goshawk, E/A-18G Growler, E-2D Advanced Hawkeye and C-2A Greyhound. Crews also tested F/A-18F Super Hornets, which had conducted an earlier round of compatibility tests on board Ford in 2017.

https://www.maritime-executive.com/arti ... ty-testing


Thanks Ozair. Interesting to note that the pilot didn't even have full afterburner set in the original video - very high pucker factor!
 
Ozair
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Sun Jun 07, 2020 12:32 pm

889091 wrote:

Thanks Ozair. Interesting to note that the pilot didn't even have full afterburner set in the original video - very high pucker factor!

No worries.

I'm positive the F-35C won't use/need burner except for take-offs at or close to MTOW. That will probably be quite rare given the MTOW of the aircraft and the typical payloads it will fly with.

The F-14B/D similarly didn't use afterburner on take off not only because it had the thrust available but also asymmetric issues if they had an engine out option.
 
Ozair
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Tue Jun 09, 2020 2:04 am

Glad the pilot is okay. Will be interesting to see an image to understand the extent of the damage to the aircraft. This isn’t the first time this has happened, F-35A at Eglin in 2018 had a nose wheel collapse in 2018.

F-35 landing gear collapses after landing at Hill

The landing gear of an F-35 fighter collapsed after landing at Hill Air Force Base in Utah Monday, the base said in a statement.

The F-35, assigned to the 388th Fighter Wing, had just finished what the base described as a routine training flight. The pilot left the aircraft and is having a routine medical evaluation, the base said.

...

https://www.airforcetimes.com/news/your ... g-at-hill/
 
Ozair
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Wed Jun 10, 2020 1:07 am

Paywall article from Avaition Week below. Summary is that the JPO are planing to present an F135 to 2035 road map to the US and International partners for approval. The plan essentially is looking at how to increase thrust while reducing fuel burn and is factoring in weight and electrical power requirements for Blk 4 and beyond. P&W already have several options for near term improvements already posted here, Growth Options One and Two. The article suggests that the options are the P&W improvements in the near term and the inclusion of an AETP derived engine in the long term, post 2030. Some challenges remain, such as what a new engine will do to overall fleet sustainment and potentially airframe modifications required to take an AETP adaptive cycle engine.

IMO it appears very likely the P&W F135 GW1 and GW2 options will be funded and, given the performance improvements promised for low modification, provide significant improvements. I have always thought a modified F-35 would come out in the late 2020s anyway, which would be positioned perfectly for an AETP derived engine, and see the last 500 to 700 or so USAF F-35s feature that engine.

F135 Upgrades, Reengining Considered In New F-35 Propulsion Road Map

The F-35 Joint Program Office is assembling a proposal for dramatic thrust and fuel-efficiency improvements to the Lockheed Martin fighter’s propulsion system.

The options under review include upgrading the existing Pratt & Whitney F135 turbofan and revisiting earlier studies potentially to reengine the fighter in the longer term with advanced adaptive technology to achieve a step change in range and power.Later this year or in 2021, the Joint Program Office (JPO) will submit the F-35 Propulsion Road Map for 2035, which will propose a recommended timeline for consideration by the three U.S. customers as well as international partners, a JPO spokeswoman confirms to Aviation Week.

...

https://aviationweek.com/defense-space/ ... n-road-map
 
Ozair
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Wed Jun 10, 2020 10:56 pm

I think this will be the first permanent coloured marking for an F-35 operator. Good to see some colour, albeit is very small, on the airframe.

The design of Denmark's new fighter aircraft is ready


...

The Aircraft Command has chosen that Denmark's new fighter aircraft must have Dannebrog painted on the aircraft's tail fin. It is a solution that combines the traditional Danish national marking that has been used throughout the 70-year history of the Air Force, with a subdued graphic expression that is in line with the F-35 aircraft's design philosophy.

...

Furthermore, it is worth noting that both cockards and Dannebrogs flag were used in a dimmed version with a dark red hue combined with a light gray shade instead of white. The aircraft's special features for avoiding radar tracking are 100 percent intact, and the national paint won't make it easier for opponents to detect visually where the aircraft is located.

...

https://www2.forsvaret.dk/nyheder/natio ... rklar.aspx Using Google Translate.

Some more detail and graphics available at this link.
https://www2.forsvaret.dk/nyheder/natio ... maling.pdf

Computer generated graphic of what it will look like.
Image
 
Ozair
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Wed Jun 10, 2020 11:53 pm

An intense workup period is happening now on the QE involving 617SQN and the aircraft that will deploy with the QE on its first operational deployment next year.

UK embarks first operational F-35Bs in HMS Queen Elizabeth work-up


Lockheed Martin F-35Bs from the Royal Air Force’s (RAF’s) frontline 617 Sqn have performed the unit’s first landings aboard the aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth.

Four of the UK’s Lightning combat aircraft embarked aboard the Royal Navy (RN) vessel on 9 June.

“The F-35 jets that landed on board today will be the same aircraft that will sail next year with the ship for her maiden Global Carrier Strike Group 21 deployment,” the navy says.

“HMS Queen Elizabeth will now enter an intense period of flying,” the navy says. “The aim is to demonstrate that the jets can successfully defend the aircraft carrier by delivering combat air patrols… and being ready to take off at short notice.”

...

https://www.flightglobal.com/fixed-wing ... 66.article

Image
 
Ozair
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Thu Jun 11, 2020 11:03 pm

As expected Congress have increased funding for F-35 acquisition with the USAF receiving an additional 12 aircraft over the 48 originally requested and depending on which article you read two F-35B and two F-35C over the existing requests for the USMC/USN.

The USAF had originally planned to acquire at 48 a year before bumping to 60 from 2025. It could easily be suggested the USAF dropped their rate and funded other programs knowing that Congress would up the F-35 buy every year anyway. For the USMC/USN there is apparently a supplier constraint that prevents the total number of F-35B manufactured every year being increased beyond a specific total that factors USMC, British, Italian and now Japanese Bee production. No limitation that I am aware of for the A and Cee.

The NYT article also indicates Congress approved the USAF keeping the six Turkish aircraft that have never left the US. I expect Turkey will be compensated financially for the aircraft but not receive any JSF program funding back.

U.S. Senate Panel Authorizes $9.1 Billion for 95 F-35 Jets Made by Lockheed

The U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee said on Thursday it had authorized $9.1 billion to procure 95 F-35 aircraft in its version of the 2021 National Defense Authorization Act, or NDAA, an annual bill setting policy for the Department of Defense.

The F-35 jet is made by Lockheed Martin Corp.

The 95 F-35s authorized in the bill are 14 more than requested by President Donald Trump's administration.

...

https://www.nytimes.com/reuters/2020/06 ... e-f35.html

This link reports 16 more than planned, https://www.defensenews.com/air/2020/06 ... tirements/
 
Ozair
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Sun Jun 14, 2020 11:57 pm

First dedicated F-35C students have now graduated from Top Gun. This continues the reasonably smooth transition the USN is making onto the F-35C and assisting in the workups for the aircraft to conduct its first sea based deployment in 2021.

First F-35C, Lightning II TOPGUN Class Graduation

Pilots from Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 125 “Rough Raiders” and VFA-147 “Argonauts” were the first TOPGUN students to complete the course in the F-35C Lightning II.

...

While all F-35C tactics instructors have completed the TOPGUN course previously, this is the first time TOPGUN has graduated students who are currently flying the Lightning II, utilizing a syllabus that has been developed, from the ground up, specifically for F-35C integrated operations. This was accomplished by the gradual introduction of F-35C tactics into the training curriculum for previous classes. The result is a cadre of highly-trained instructors executing a fully-integrated F-35C syllabus, providing well-rounded “graduate-level” training for the fifth-generation fighter to take back to the Fleet.

...

https://hanfordsentinel.com/community/l ... 0d147.html
 
Ozair
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Sun Jun 21, 2020 4:00 am

An interesting capability being deployed by the USAF to reduce the sustainment costs by using developer test stations that better validate software functionality, thereby reducing the number of test flights required.

F-35 Micro-Lids bring significant savings to Air Force

Having up-to-date software is essential in keeping our nation’s aircraft on the cutting edge. The 402nd Software Engineering Group F-35 element at Robins Air Force Base, Georgia, now has five Micro Low-Cost Integrated Development stations.

F-35 aircraft system Micro-LIDS are developer test stations for certain software functionality on the F-35, according to Linda Jean Myers, 578th Software Engineering Squadron Element chief.

Even though the total cost of the five Micro-LIDS was $500,000, each station will bring significant savings to the Air Force in the long term.

“By using these stations, software issues can be detected and corrected in-house before deployment, which saves time and money in rework and flight tests,” Myers said. “Each flight test costs approximately $50,000 dollars per hour and by using the micro-LIDS, we can greatly minimize the flight tests needed for software verification and validation, which results in major savings for the Air Force.”

Software comprises a majority of the F-35 capabilities and sustaining the software is essential in keeping aircraft operational.

“The Department of Defense has a DoD Enterprise Development Security Operations initiative,” said Myers. “Several programs are being stood up within the Air Force to enable existing programs within the government to move to cloud-based development services.”

The benefit of these services is the Continuous Authority to Operate, without the ATO each program would have to be acquired separately.

“DevSecOps is a software development model that enforces cybersecurity functions and policy from the inception of development by incorporating automated software tools and standards,” Myers said. “Establishing an environment for DevSecOps could enable the development of pure software applications to be tested and rapidly deployed to the warfighter.”

An increase in software development would benefit the base.

“The activation of software sustainment for F-35 aircraft will be an impactful effort for Robins Air Force Base requiring many skilled software developers throughout the life cycle of the aircraft,” said Myers. “Organic sustainment of F-35 systems will continue to move the technical capabilities of Robins personnel while providing the Air Force with not only cost savings but increased capabilities for the warfighters.”

https://www.robins.af.mil/News/Article- ... air-force/
 
Ozair
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Sun Jun 21, 2020 4:05 am

A second training squadron for F-35 will be stood up at Eglin in mid 2021 with aircraft arriving by Oct. I wonder if this will be a transition squadron or train new fighter aircrew. The article also indicates there the difficulties of doing this now that the only F-22 training squadron is also now based at Eglin.

Work continues to get second F-35 training squadron to Eglin

A second F-35 Lightning II fifth-generation stealth fighter jet squadron is expected to be stood up at Eglin Air Force Base next year, a move “which will effectively double our operation by 2022,” Col. Jon Wheeler, commander of the Eglin-based 33rd Fighter Wing, said this week.

...

https://www.waltonsun.com/news/20200619 ... n-to-eglin
 
Ozair
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Sun Jun 21, 2020 4:11 am

Additional funding coming for the Indo-Pacific region to improve the readiness of forces in the region, increase missile defence and also create an F-35 hub to ensure aircraft located in the region can be repaired and returned to service promptly.

Given much of this work will come to Australia it might be more aptly named fortress Australia in twenty years time...

US Senate calls for a Pacific F-35 hub, regional weapons caches

...

The Senate Armed Services Committee has requested US$1.4 billion ($2 billion) for next year, with an additional US$5.5 billion ($8 billion) for the fiscal year 2022 to augment missile defence in support of regional partners, and critically, forward deploy more troops in the Indo-Pacific.

...

A critical component of the approved NDAA includes plans for the US Air Force to establish a new F-35A Joint Strike Fighter operating facility in the Indo-Pacific "quickly to posture ready forces in our priority arena", the committee states.

This was expanded upon by committee chairman, senator Jim Inhofe, who articulated the growing need for more F-35s in the Indo-Pacific, stating, "It doesn't matter how many F-35s the military buys if very few are stationed in the region, their primary bases have little defence against Chinese missiles, they don't have secondary airfields to operate from, they can't access prepositioned stocks of fuel and munitions, or they can't be repaired in theatre and get back in the fight when it counts.

"The Pacific Deterrence Initiative will incentivise increased focus on posture and logistics, and help measure whether these requirements are being matched with resources."

...

https://www.defenceconnect.com.au/strik ... ons-caches
 
Ozair
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Wed Jun 24, 2020 2:51 am

Spares issues continue to plague the F-35 program and lift the sustainment cost higher than it should be. Very disappointing that this continues so long into the program and it certainly doesn’t aid in winning any of the competitions that are ongoing.

Air Crews Balk at Lockheed F-35 Parts That Aren’t Ready to Use

Air crews maintaining the F-35 say they’re working extra hours to keep the Pentagon’s costliest aircraft flying because Lockheed Martin Corp. continues to provide parts that aren’t ready to install, according to leaders of a congressional committee.

The House Oversight and Reform Committee is examining Lockheed’s “failure to provide F-35 spare parts that meet contract requirements,” Representative Carolyn Maloney, the committee’s chairwoman, and Representative Stephen Lynch, who heads its national security panel, said in a letter to James Taiclet, Lockheed’s new chief executive officer, dated June 18.

On multiple base visits starting late last year, committee staff “learned troubling information about how unresolved issues with F-35 spare parts lead to excess costs” as the military must “divert personnel to troubleshoot these issues and use extensive workarounds to keep F-35 planes flying,” the lawmakers wrote. One commander warned that problems with the electronic logs needed to track each part’s vital information are “pervasive” and that time spent resolving them is a “massive manpower suck.”

...

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles ... ady-to-use
 
Ozair
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Wed Jun 24, 2020 10:31 pm

The F-35 program has been doing separation tests for the B-61-12. These tests have occurred over a number of years but interesting to see the flurry of tests conducted last year and this year. Perhaps there is a political aspect to releasing these particular images and nuclear testing information now.

Here Are The First Photos Of The F-35A Jets Dropping Inert B61-12 Nuclear Bombs During DCA Tests

The F-35 Joint Program Office has released a bunch of images showing DCA (Dual Capable Aircraft) tests involving the release of inert nuclear bombs.
It is not a secret that the F-35A, the CTOL (Convetional Take Off and Landing) variant of the Lightning II aircraft, will be dual capable aircraft (DCA), meaning that it will have the ability to deliver nuclear ordnance as well as conventional weapons. Such dual capability is expected to be included in the Block 4 software release, with initial capability for the B61-12 weapon. Although the F-35A DCA is scheduled to achieve nuclear certification in January, 2023, testing at the 461st FLTS, the test squadron that oversees developmental testing of all variants of the fifth-generation F-35 Lightning II at Edwards Air Force Base, California, has started in 2019.

...

https://theaviationist.com/2020/06/22/h ... dca-tests/

Image
 
Ozair
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Thu Jun 25, 2020 12:11 am

Some temporary restrictions on the F-35A flying IVO lightning storms (lighting II indeed…) while the JPO and operators sort out if this is a wide spread problem occurred from unit maintenance or an isolated issue.

The F-35 Lightning II can’t fly in lightning once again

The most widely used variant of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is currently unable to fly in thunderstorms after the discovery of damage to one of the systems it uses to protect itself from lightning, its prime contractor Lockheed Martin said Wednesday.

...

Lockheed temporarily paused F-35 deliveries June 2-23 as the company validated whether it was properly installing OBIGGS systems. However, “it appears this anomaly is occurring in the field after aircraft delivery,” Lockheed said in a statement.

Lockheed has since delivered two F-35s, company spokesman Brett Ashworth said.

Because it cannot be confirmed that the OBIGGS system would function properly if the jet was hit by lightning, the F-35 Joint Program Office has opted to institute flight restrictions.

“As a safety precaution, the JPO recommended to unit commanders that they implement a lightning flight restriction for the F-35A, which restricts flying within 25 miles of lightning or thunderstorms,” Lockheed said. “We are working with the F-35 Joint Program Office (JPO) on a root cause corrective action investigation to determine next steps.”

...

https://www.defensenews.com/air/2020/06 ... nce-again/
 
Ozair
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Thu Jun 25, 2020 10:34 pm

The HASC and the SASC have provided different funding allotments for the F-35 program. The article alludes to the SASC likely winning the battle, as it has done in previous years, but certainly there is justification for what the HASC is trying to do.

HASC NDAA Cuts F-35, Adds Sub, Sets Up Senate Clash

The House and Senate Armed Services Committees are an impressive $2 billion apart on the F-35, with the HASC hoping to cut upgrades, depots and other support for the controversial Joint Strike Fighter while the SASC seeks to buy more jets.

...

So while SASC adds $1.36 billion to buy more Air Force F-35As, Marine F-35Bs, and Navy F-35Cs, plus spare parts, HASC keeps the total number of aircraft being bought the same and then docks at least a score of supporting line items by a total of $561 million. These cuts include:

$150 million from the Air Force for “excess miscellaneous support costs”;
$134.6 million (divided among the three variants) for anticipated savings from the upcoming Lot 15 contract;
$92 million (over four line items) for various delays in the plane’s Block IV software upgrade;
$38.6 million (over four line items) for various aspects of ALIS, the F-35’s notoriously buggy maintenance software;
$33.5 million (divided among the three variants) for “excess” costs to stand up more maintenance depots.
Now, HASC isn’t cutting the same line items that the SASC is increasing. But it’s hard to increase the number of aircraft you’re buying, as SASC wants, at the same time you’re cutting the support infrastructure for those aircraft, as HASC wants.

...

https://breakingdefense.com/2020/06/has ... ate-clash/
 
Ozair
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Mon Jul 06, 2020 12:17 am

Japan, as an FMS customer, has done very well in gaining the ability to conduct heavy maintenance for the F-35. While much of this is expected to be domestic aircraft there is potential for other operators, including US aircraft stationed in Japan, to have their work done there.

Australia is the other pacific location for MRO and they will likely get Korean work and possibly Singpore as well.

Japanese F-35 maintenance depot opens for business

Japan has opened its regional maintenance base for the Lockheed Martin F-35 fighter.

The first aircraft to receive service at the regional depot will be a Japan Air Self Defense Force F-35A based at Misawa Air Base, says Tokyo’s Acquisitions, Technology & Logistics Agency.

...

https://www.flightglobal.com/fixed-wing ... 11.article
 
Ozair
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Mon Jul 06, 2020 12:58 am

Should improve training now for both the F-35 guys and the 4th gen fighters. It should allow 4th gen aircraft to get a taste of what the F-35 is capable of without having to go to a Red Flag or other exercise.

F-35 simulators can now team up with other fighter sims for virtual combat

U.S. Air Force F-35 pilots at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, will now be able to step into a simulator and train alongside virtual F-16s, F-15s and other aircraft, a Lockheed Martin executive said Wednesday.

Air Combat Command formally accepted Lockheed’s Distributed Mission Training system on June 22 after a final test on June 18. During that test, four F-35 simulators at Nellis carried out a virtual mission with pilots in F-22, F-16 and E-3 AWACs simulators at other bases, said Chauncey McIntosh, Lockheed’s vice president for F-35 training and logistics.

“We did originally intend to deliver this in the April time frame, but Nellis Air Force Base did shut down some operations due to the COVID crisis,” he told reporters in a July 1 briefing. “We worked very hard with both the [F-35 Joint Program Office] and the United States Air Force to ensure as soon as the facilities were re-stood up and open, that we were there to deliver this capability.”

...

https://www.defensenews.com/air/2020/07 ... al-combat/
 
Ozair
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Mon Jul 06, 2020 1:49 am

News reports out of the Middle East are suggesting that Israel may have used F-35s to attack a facility that stored nuclear fuel and manufactured missiles.

Report: Israeli cyberattack caused Iran nuclear site fire, F35s hit missile base

...

Last Friday, a large blast was felt in Tehran, apparently caused by an explosion at the Parchin military complex, which defense analysts believe hold an underground tunnel system and missile production facilities.

According to the al-Jareeda report on Friday, that explosion was caused by missiles dropped by a number of Israeli F-35 stealth fighter jets.

The newspaper reported that the aircraft took off from southern Israel and carried out the bombing run without the need to refuel.

...

https://www.timesofisrael.com/report-is ... sile-base/
 
mxaxai
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Mon Jul 06, 2020 10:29 am

Ozair wrote:
News reports out of the Middle East are suggesting that Israel may have used F-35s to attack a facility that stored nuclear fuel and manufactured missiles.
Last Friday, a large blast was felt in Tehran, apparently caused by an explosion at the Parchin military complex, which defense analysts believe hold an underground tunnel system and missile production facilities.
....
Early Thursday morning, a fire and then an explosion were reported at an above-ground building in the Natanz nuclear enrichment facility, which US-based analysts said was likely a new centrifuge production plant. Natanz, located some 250 kilometers (155 miles) south of Tehran, includes underground facilities buried under some 7.6 meters (25 feet) of concrete, which offers protection from airstrikes.

Two independent incidents seem to have occured; a "gas explosion" at the Parchin missile production site, and a fire "incident" at the Natanz nuclear enrichment facility. Only the former was supposedly caused by an Israeli airstrike, the latter may or may not have been the result of a cyberattack. There's a lot of quoting unnamed sources. We also have reports that a bomb was placed near the Natanz building and Israel saying that they don't cause every explosion in Iran.

Israel has also been flying airstrikes against the Hamas in Palestina recently, so there could be some confusion. Parchin is east of Tehran, so an aerial attack would likely have to take a detour around the city, adding to the great circle distance of ~850 nm from Israel and making me doubt an unrefueled strike. Alternatively, they'd have to fly over the spot where a civilian airliner was downed less than half a year ago...
 
Planeflyer
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Mon Jul 06, 2020 12:40 pm

Jeez, if only they didn't have those pesky F35's, there'd be a lot less confusion.
 
mxaxai
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Mon Jul 06, 2020 1:07 pm

Planeflyer wrote:
Jeez, if only they didn't have those pesky F35's, there'd be a lot less confusion.

Well, other aircraft would be less sneaky so you could track them at all times via RF24.com
 
Planeflyer
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Mon Jul 06, 2020 1:52 pm

When you have neighbors like Iran, the F35 shows it’s worth.

If they only had F15/16 There would be a lot less ambiguity.
 
Ozair
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Thu Jul 09, 2020 12:00 am

A policy change to something that the Italian Air Force was already doing with the F-35s. Given the Italian Air Force are now on their second Icelandic Air policing mission with the F-35 it was pretty clear they had the intent to use it in an A2A role.

Italy declares Eurofighter and Lightning II to be multirole platforms

The Italian Air Force (Aeronautica Militare Italiana: AMI) has said both its Eurofighter and Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II fleets will be used for multirole operations, reversing its previously stated policy of restricting different types to particular roles.

Speaking at a ‘virtual’ NATO Iceland Air Policing event, a senior AMI officer said that, while the practise of limiting the Eurofighter to air defence and the Lightning II to ground attack previously made sense, the ‘omnirole’ capabilities of both meant that this was no longer the case.

...

https://www.janes.com/defence-news/news ... -platforms
 
Ozair
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Fri Jul 10, 2020 2:07 am

In addition to the comments posted yesterday about Italy using the F-35 there is this article from Janes indicating the F-35 was extremely reliable while deployed to Iceland and that the aircraft was scrambled to intercept a number of Russian aircraft.

Italy demonstrates F-35 air defender credentials on NATO ops

...

Speaking to reporters during a ‘virtual’ media event hosted by NATO, Colonel Michele Cesario said that the six F-35A aircraft that have been flying the Icelandic Air Policing mission since early to mid-June have proved to be “extremely reliable” in the quick reaction alert (QRA) role. He added that that this second national deployment of the type on this mission had underlined the AMI’s recent decision to employ the aircraft in the air-defence role as well as for ground attack.

“I can confirm the reliability and the effectiveness of this aircraft for this particular task,” Col Cesario said of the experience so far of the AMI’s Operation ‘Northern Lightning 2’ in Iceland.

The colonel’s comments on 8 July came on the back of the first real-world ‘Alpha’ Scramble by any F-35 against Russian military aircraft. This event saw a pair of AMI F-35s launch a QRA sortie out of Keflavik airbase on 3 July, intercepting and shadowing three Tupolev Tu-142 ‘Bear-F/J’ long-range maritime patrol aircraft, one Ilyushin Il-78 ‘Midas’ tanker, and an undisclosed number of MiG-31 ‘Foxhound’ escort interceptors that were flying in international airspace close to Iceland.

https://www.janes.com/defence-news/news ... n-nato-ops
 
Ozair
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Re: F-35 News Thread - 2020

Fri Jul 10, 2020 2:12 am

Japan is cleared to acquire the additional 105 F-35s they planned as per their 2018 plan. I expect the price will be a significantly lower than the stated US$23 billion as per the DSCA release.

US gives the green light to Japan’s massive $23B F-35 buy

The United States on Thursday approved a planned purchase by Japan of 105 F-35 joint strike fighters, moving the country one step closer to becoming the biggest foreign customer of the Lockheed Martin-produced jet.

The approved package includes 63 F-35A conventional takeoff and landing aircraft and 42 F-35 short takeoff and landing variants, essentially green-lighting the procurement plans spelled out by Japan in 2018.

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https://www.defensenews.com/smr/2020/07 ... -f-35-buy/

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