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Author Topic: Lockheed Martin F-35: News ONLY topic  (Read 50819 times)

Offline GTX

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Re: Lockheed Martin F-35: News ONLY topic
« Reply #255 on: July 12, 2013, 12:00:31 pm »
Quote
Taiwan Makes Pitch for Purchase of F-35 Fighter Jets
(Source: China News Agency; published July 11, 2013)
 
WASHINGTON --- A delegation from the Taiwan-US Inter-Parliamentary Amity Association of Taiwan's Legislature said Wednesday in Washington that Taiwan wants to purchase advanced F-35 fighter jets that best suit its defense needs.

Kuomintang (KMT) Legislator and Association Chairman Lin Yu-fang briefed reporters in Washington after the delegation's meeting at the Pentagon with David Helvey, deputy assistant secretary of defense for East Asia, to discuss Taiwan's needs for advanced defense weaponry.

The delegation members, in their capacity as the Republic of China (ROC) lawmakers, also met with Gregory Kausner, deputy assistant secretary of state for regional security and arms transfers, at the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) Washington Headquarters, according to Lin.

The lawmakers said Taiwan needs more advanced fighter jets and submarines to enhance its defense, and also needs to gain more international space.

Lin said Taiwan will continue to push for the purchase of F-35 fighters from the U.S. but should also consider buying a reasonable number of F-16C/D jets to replace Taiwan's aging F-5s, which are expected to be phased out in the next few years.

When the United States agreed to upgrade Taiwan's current fleet of F-16A/B fighter jets in September 2011, it effectively ruled out the sale of the next-generation F-35s, according to Lin.

It would be ideal if Taiwan could purchase the new fighters, which are capable of vertical and short take-off and landing, Lin said.

But even if the U.S. approves the sale, the global waiting list is so long that it would take 15-20 years for Taiwan's order to be delivered, he added.

While in Washington, the delegation also met with members of the U.S. Congress including Sen. Benjamin Cardin, chairman of the East Asian & Pacific Affairs Subcommittee, and Rep. Ed Royce, chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

Earlier in New York, the delegation met more than a dozen of the permanent representatives to the United Nations of Taiwan's allies at the U.N. headquarters.

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Re: Lockheed Martin F-35: News ONLY topic
« Reply #256 on: July 12, 2013, 03:29:45 pm »
Lockheed Martin Delivers 100th Targeting System for F-35

Orlando, Fla., July 12, 2013 – Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] recently delivered the 100th Electro-Optical Targeting System (EOTS) for the F-35 Lightning II. EOTS provides affordable, high performance multifunction targeting to the F-35’s full spectrum of military operations.

EOTS is the first sensor that combines forward-looking infrared and infrared search and track functionality to provide F-35 pilots with situational awareness and air-to-air and air-to-surface targeting from a safe distance. This technology allows aircrews to identify areas of interest, perform reconnaissance and precisely deliver laser and GPS-guided weapons.

“F-35 pilots can use the imagery to determine exactly where to strike while staying out of harm’s way,” said Ken Fuhr, director of fixed wing programs at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. “Delivering our 100th F-35 EOTS is one step closer to ensuring all F-35 pilots can perform their missions and return home safely.”

Lockheed Martin is currently producing EOTS under the seventh low-rate initial production contract. Planned production quantities for the F-35 exceed 3,000 aircraft with deliveries through 2030.

Key components of EOTS are manufactured at the company’s Ocala, Fla., and Santa Barbara, Calif., facilities. In addition to EOTS, Lockheed Martin also manufactures the low observable window for the aircraft at the company’s Orlando, Fla., facility.

The F-35 Lightning II is a 5th generation fighter, combining advanced stealth with fighter speed and agility, fully fused sensor information, network-enabled operations and advanced sustainment. Three distinct variants of the F-35 will replace the A-10 and F-16 for the U.S. Air Force, the F/A-18 for the U.S. Navy, the F/A-18 and AV-8B Harrier for the U.S. Marine Corps, and a variety of fighters for at least 10 other countries.

Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control is a 2012 recipient of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award for performance excellence. The Malcolm Baldrige Award represents the highest honor that can be awarded to American companies for achievement in leadership, strategic planning, customer relations, measurement, analysis, workforce excellence, operations and business results.

Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs about 118,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The Corporation’s net sales for 2012 were $47.2 billion.

Offline Arjen

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Re: Lockheed Martin F-35: News ONLY topic
« Reply #257 on: July 13, 2013, 01:58:22 am »
From Aviation Week:
Italian final assembly and checkout facility starts operations, opening ceremony canceled.

Quote
Internal politics in Italy have prompted Alenia Aermacchi and Lockheed Martin to dash long-held plans for a ceremony to celebrate the opening of the Italian final assembly and checkout (FACO) facility for the stealthy F-35 fighter.

[...]
 the companies recently decided not to conduct such a conspicuous event, in light of past political wrangling over the expensive F-35 program in Italy, according to program officials. They requested anonymity because of sensitivity over the decision.

[...]
The defense ministry constructed the facility to allow for long-term maintenance, repair and overhaul of the single-engine fighter. The government hopes Cameri will become a regional maintenance facility for aircraft in Europe and Israel, providing aerospace jobs for decades.

The first F-35 to roll off that assembly line is slated for delivery to Amendola Air Base in Italy in 2016.
More at the link

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Re: Lockheed Martin F-35: News ONLY topic
« Reply #258 on: July 15, 2013, 03:26:29 pm »
New Data Link Enables Stealthy Comms
Jul. 14, 2013 - 04:36PM   | 
By AARON MEHTA

WASHINGTON — Pentagon officials have long identified the F-35 joint strike fighter as key to the future of America’s defense, in large part due to stealth capabilities that should allow the plane to travel in contested environments that older fighters would struggle to penetrate.

The problem is, these planes need to talk to each other without sacrificing stealth. To tackle that problem, the F-35 has incorporated Northrop Grumman’s Multifunction Advanced Data Link (MADL), a system that’s undergoing testing in the California desert.

MADL is a digital waveform designed for secure transmission of voice and data between F-35s, with the potential of linking F-35s to ground stations or other aircraft, Northrop said.

Think of the system as a computer. The communications, navigation and identification (CNI) system on an F-35 can manage 27 different waveforms, including MADL. The data comes through the antenna, is turned into digitized bits, and is crunched by the on-board systems to get the relevant information to the pilots.

The system will be included in the 2B software package that the US Marine Corps’ F-35B jump-jet variant and the US Air Force’s F-35A conventional version will use when they reach initial operating capability in 2015 and 2016, respectively. It also will be included in all international versions of the jet. The US Navy’s F-35C carrier variant is expected to reach IOC in 2019 with the block 3F software, which will incorporate MADL and other capabilities.

What makes MADL more than just a communications tool is its ability to connect with other planes and automatically share situational awareness data between fighters. The more planes in the network the greater the data shared and the more comprehensive a picture is formed.

Picture a group of jets flying in formation. The pilot farthest to the right will have a different situational awareness picture than the pilot on the left. But once they’re networked, all the information is automatically shared among the pilots.

Prior to takeoff, planes would be designated with partners to form the network. When a plane gets within range, the network is automatically created.

“Like on your computer, your network into the local area, we’re building that network in the sky and it’s keeping up with all the dynamics and spatial changes,” said Bob Gough, director of CNI technology and programs at Northrop. “MADL has the smarts to keep up with all of that and keep the network in place so they can share the same data.”

Gough declined to say how close jets need to be to trigger the network link, but did say tests have shown “very fast” acquisition times once within range.

Live flight system tests at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., began late last year and have continued throughout this year. Initially, the tests involved networking a pair of planes, but recently, test pilots began regularly flying four-plane networks. Those tests are proceeding smoothly, said Joe DellaVedova, a spokesman for the Pentagon’s F-35 Joint Program Office.

“MADL testing is performing as planned,” DellaVedova wrote in an email. “Development of the advanced data link is currently tracking to deliver the phased capability expected by the end of development.”

The system is designed for plane-to-plane communications only, something Gough expects to continue in the near term. But he did not rule out experimenting with data transfer to other terminals.

“We have postulated MADL terminals on ships and we have built a MADL test ground station, so it could be done,” he said. “But it’s more about the logistics of where F-35s will be flying and how close to the ground they would be. It would be mission-scenario dependent, but it’s all technically possible.”

In the long term, Northrop hopes to expand the technology to other fifth-generation planes. That’s not a new idea; in 2008, MADL was slated to go on the F-22 Raptor fighter and B-2 bomber. But it never went on those jets, something the former Air Force chief of staff, Gen. Norton Schwartz, blamed on the technology’s lack of maturity during congressional testimony in 2009.

“We believe as the flight test program matures, it will be more likely” to end up on other platforms, Gough said.

That could include using MADL to communicate between fifth-generation fighters like the JSF and fourth-generation fighters, such as an F-16. Gough said he hopes to begin research on fifth-to-fourth generation data transfers “as soon as” next year.

http://www.defensenews.com/article/20130714/DEFFEAT01/307140011

Offline Arjen

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Re: Lockheed Martin F-35: News ONLY topic
« Reply #259 on: July 16, 2013, 12:38:39 am »
Interesting bit near the end:
[...]
The system is designed for plane-to-plane communications only, something Gough expects to continue in the near term. But he did not rule out experimenting with data transfer to other terminals.

“We have postulated MADL terminals on ships and we have built a MADL test ground station, so it could be done,” he said. “But it’s more about the logistics of where F-35s will be flying and how close to the ground they would be. It would be mission-scenario dependent, but it’s all technically possible.”

[...]

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Re: Lockheed Martin F-35: News ONLY topic
« Reply #260 on: July 18, 2013, 07:57:26 am »
First UK F-35B unit to be RAF 617 Squadron - The Dambusters:

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/dambusters-to-be-first-lightning-ii-squadron
BAe P.1216 Supersonic ASTOVL Aircraft: www.harrier.org.uk/P1216.htm

100 Years  - Camel, Hurricane, Harrier: www.kingstonaviation.org

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Re: Lockheed Martin F-35: News ONLY topic
« Reply #261 on: July 22, 2013, 12:45:07 am »

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Re: Lockheed Martin F-35: News ONLY topic
« Reply #262 on: July 23, 2013, 03:34:10 pm »
Northrop Grumman Delivers Center Fuselage for Italy's First F-35 Lightning II, Enabling Increased International Participation

2013-07-23T05:00:00-0700

PALMDALE, Calif. – July 23, 2013 – Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) delivered the center fuselage for Italy's first F-35 Lightning II to the newly commissioned Final Assembly and Check Out (FACO) facility at Italy's Cameri Air Base July 12. This on-time delivery to Lockheed Martin enables the first assembly of an F-35 aircraft at the FACO facility and increases international participation on the F-35 program.

The center fuselage, AL-1, will be integrated into a conventional takeoff and landing variant of the F-35, and represents the first of 90 center fuselage sections that will be delivered to the Italian FACO facility for Italian aircraft.

"We started working on AL-1 in September 2012, when it was inducted into our Integrated Assembly Line [IAL] at our Palmdale facility," said Michelle Scarpella, vice president of the F-35 program for Northrop Grumman. "It's the 115th center fuselage we've completed here in Palmdale, and marks another program milestone, as we continue to stand up and grow international F-35 participation."

The IAL maximizes robotics and automation, providing additional assembly capability while meeting engineering tolerances that are not easily achieved using manual methods. The IAL is central in producing the F-35's center fuselage as well as increasing the program's affordability, quality and efficiency. Currently, there are 35 center fuselages in flow on the IAL, including some for Australia and additional ones for Italy; deliveries have already been made to Ft Worth for final assembly and delivery to the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.

Set on 101 acres in Italy's Piedmont region, the FACO facility at Cameri will be one of a kind in Europe. With 22 buildings, more than a million square feet of covered work space, 11 final assembly workstations – including four outfitted for electronic mate and assembly – and five maintenance, repair, overhaul and upgrade bays, the FACO at Cameri is positioned to serve as a new hub for the Italian aerospace industry.

As a principal member of the Lockheed Martin-led F-35 industry team, Northrop Grumman performs a significant share of the work required to develop and produce the aircraft. In addition to manufacturing the F-35 center fuselage, Northrop Grumman designed and produces the aircraft's radar and other key avionics including electro-optical and communications, navigation and identification subsystems. Northrop Grumman also develops mission systems and mission planning software, leads the team's development of pilot and maintenance training system courseware, and manages the team's use, support and maintenance of low-observable technologies. In 2012, the company delivered 32 center fuselages and is on track to exceed 2012 delivery quantities in 2013.

Northrop Grumman is a leading global security company providing innovative systems, products and solutions in unmanned systems, cyber, C4ISR, and logistics and modernization to government and commercial customers worldwide. Please visit www.northropgrumman.com for more information.

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Re: Lockheed Martin F-35: News ONLY topic
« Reply #263 on: July 24, 2013, 04:34:31 pm »
AF-41, Lockheed Martin’s 100th Airframe, first F-35 designated for Luke AFB

We couldn’t resist sharing with the world a few of the most recent photos of AF-41, Lockheed Martin’s 100th F-35 Airframe and first F-35A that will be delivered to Luke AFB. Enjoy!



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Re: Lockheed Martin F-35: News ONLY topic
« Reply #264 on: July 25, 2013, 02:34:17 pm »
F-35 Test Aircraft Transferred to the Netherlands
The Hague, Netherlands // July 25, 2013

On July 15, 2013, the first of two Dutch F-35 test aircraft was transferred by the U.S. government to the Dutch Ministry of Defense. It is also the first F-35A conventional takeoff and landing (CTOL) delivered to an international partner in the F35 program.

This is the English translation of the Dutch Ministry of Defense press release issued earlier today.

The Netherlands ordered this aircraft in 2009 for participation in the operational test phase of the F-35 program. After the aircraft had been fully checked, it was officially transferred to the Dutch Ministry of Defense. This took place at the flight-line of Ft. Worth, in the United States.

At that, the Netherlands took possession of the aircraft and will now be responsible for maintenance and safety. Therefore, some Dutch defense employees will follow a technical training, after which they will supervise maintenance works by the Americans and the respective accounts. By now, the production of the second test aircraft ordered in 2011 is finalized, and that aircraft is still going through some test and acceptance flights. Expectations are that the first test aircraft will be flown within some days by an American pilot to the U.S. air force base in Florida where the aircraft remains stored until a decision has been taken on the replacement of the F-16 in connection with the memorandum on the future of the Netherlands Armed Forces. During that period of storage, the aircraft will be used for technical ground tests.

https://www.f35.com/news/detail/f-35-test-aircraft-transferred-to-the-netherlands

Offline GTX

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Re: Lockheed Martin F-35: News ONLY topic
« Reply #265 on: July 26, 2013, 01:37:20 pm »
Further to the images above:

Quote
100th Jet In Final Production; First F-35 Bound for Luke
(Source: Lockheed Martin; issued July 25, 2013)
 
FORT WORTH, Texas --- The 100th Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II, the first aircraft destined for Luke Air Force Base in Glendale, Ariz., has entered the last stage of final assembly. This conventional takeoff and landing (CTOL) aircraft, known as AF-41, is scheduled to arrive at the base next year.

During final assembly, the aircraft structure is completed, and electrical and hydraulic systems are added. Additionally, these systems are tested in preparation for fuel systems checks and engine runs. The final steps prior to acceptance by the Air Force include a series of checkout flights leading to the aircraft entering the service’s F-35 fleet. AF-41 is one of 126 F-35s in various stages of production worldwide.

In June, the Air Force announced its decision to increase the number of squadrons at Luke AFB to six with 144 aircraft, which will make it the largest F-35 base worldwide. In addition to training U.S. pilots, Luke will also serve as an F-35A International Training site. Currently, Luke’s economic impact on the state of Arizona is $2.17 Billion. With 14 F-35 suppliers in the state of Arizona, the program has an additional economic impact of $98Million.


Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs about 116,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The corporation's net sales for 2012 were $47.2 billion.

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Re: Lockheed Martin F-35: News ONLY topic
« Reply #266 on: July 29, 2013, 03:55:35 pm »
F-35A AF-34 First Flight

Photo by davechng

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Re: Lockheed Martin F-35: News ONLY topic
« Reply #267 on: July 29, 2013, 04:12:14 pm »
Northrop Grumman Delivers 100th Communications, Navigation and Identification System for F-35 Lightning II

SAN DIEGO – July 29, 2013 – Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) has delivered its 100th AN/ASQ-242 communications, navigation and identification (CNI) system to Lockheed Martin Corp. for integration into the F-35 Lightning II.

A photo accompanying this release is available at http://media.globenewswire.com/noc/mediagallery.html?pkgid=20108 .

"The CNI system is a critical part of the F-35 mission systems suite, and we're proud of the excellent performance of the AN/ASQ-242 in flight tests and ongoing pilot and maintainer training activities," said Mike Twyman, vice president and general manager of the Defense Systems division of Northrop Grumman Information Systems. "This milestone underscores our commitment to advanced design, quality manufacturing, affordability and supportability.

"By incorporating lessons learned from previous programs and early F-35 low-rate production lots, we're delivering highly robust and reliable CNI systems that demonstrate extensive fifth-generation fighter capabilities. The Northrop Grumman team is focused on continuous improvement, lot to lot, for schedule, quality and cost as we prepare for high-rate F-35 production," said Twyman.

Northrop Grumman's integrated CNI system provides F-35 pilots with the capability of more than 27 avionics functions. By using its industry-leading software-defined radio technology, Northrop Grumman's design allows the simultaneous operation of multiple critical functions while greatly reducing size, weight and power demands on the advanced fighter. These capabilities include Identification Friend or Foe, precision navigation, and various voice and data communications, including the Multifunction Advanced Data Link, which was approved by the U.S. Department of Defense Joint Requirements Oversight Council for use on all low-observable platforms.

As a principal member of the Lockheed Martin-led F-35 industry team, Northrop Grumman performs a significant share of the work required to develop and produce the aircraft. In addition to developing and producing the AN/ASQ-242 CNI system, Northrop Grumman produces the center fuselage; designed and produces the aircraft's radar and electro-optical subsystem; develops mission systems and mission planning software; leads the team's development of pilot and maintenance training system courseware; and manages the team's use, support and maintenance of low-observable technologies.

The F-35 Lightning II is a 5th Generation fighter, combining advanced stealth with fighter speed and agility, fully fused sensor information, network-enabled operations and advanced sustainment. Lockheed Martin is developing the F-35 with its principal industrial partners, Northrop Grumman and BAE Systems, headquartered in the U.K. The U.S. Marine Corps plans to declare Initial Operational Capability with the STOVL in 2015.

Northrop Grumman is a leading global security company providing innovative systems, products and solutions in unmanned systems, cyber, C4ISR, and logistics and modernization to government and commercial customers worldwide. Please visit www.northropgrumman.com for more information.

http://www.northropgrumman.com/MediaResources/Pages/NewsArticle.aspx?art=http://www.irconnect.com/noc/press/xml/nitf.html?d=10042066

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Re: Lockheed Martin F-35: News ONLY topic
« Reply #268 on: July 29, 2013, 08:06:40 pm »
F-35A AF-30 First Flight

"Lockheed Martin test pilot Al Norman was at the controls for the first flight of F-35A AF-30 (US Air Force serial number 10-5018). The flight occurred on 27 July 2013 with takeoff and landing at NAS Fort Worth JRB, Texas.  Photo by Carl Richards"

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Re: Lockheed Martin F-35: News ONLY topic
« Reply #269 on: July 30, 2013, 03:25:23 pm »
Principle Agreement Reached On Two Lower Cost F-35 Contracts

Washington D.C., July 30, 2013 – The U.S. Department of Defense and Lockheed Martin reached an agreement in principle for the next two F-35 Lightning II aircraft production contracts (Low-Rate Initial Production (LRIP) lots 6 and 7), which is expected to include 71 stealth fighter aircraft and continue a reduction in F-35 aircraft pricing. The contracting effort spanned six months from proposal to settlement.

A decrease in F-35 LRIP 6-7 unit costs, coupled with negotiating lower prices on a number of other smaller contracts, will allow the Department to purchase all the aircraft originally planned, including those that were in jeopardy of being cut due to sequestration budget impacts.

Cost details will be released once both contracts are finalized; however, in general, the unit prices for all three variants of the U.S. air vehicles in LRIP-6 are roughly four percent lower than the previous contract. LRIP-7 air vehicle unit prices will show an additional four percent reduction. The LRIP-7 price represents about an eight percent reduction from the LRIP-5 contract signed in December 2012.

"These two contracts represent a fair deal that is beneficial to the government and Lockheed Martin," said Lt. Gen. Chris Bogdan, F-35 Program Executive Officer. "Improving affordability is critical to the success of this program, and by working together we were able to negotiate a lower cost F-35. There is still work to be done, but these agreements are proof the cost arrow is moving in the right direction.  We will continue to work with industry to identify areas for savings in future production contracts."

The new contracts will also include the first F-35s for Australia, Italy, Norway, and the fourth F-35 for the United Kingdom. In addition to procuring the air vehicles, these contracts also fund manufacturing-support equipment and ancillary mission equipment.

Deliveries of 36 U.S. and partner nation aircraft in LRIP-6 will begin by mid-2014 and deliveries of 35 U.S. and partner nation aircraft in LRIP-7 will begin by mid-2015.

“At the start of these negotiations, the F-35 Joint Program Office and our F-35 team jointly committed to conduct LRIP-6 and -7 negotiations in an efficient manner that leveraged all we achieved from the LRIP-5 contract,” said Lorraine Martin, Lockheed Martin F-35 Vice President and General Manager. “Today’s agreement reflects our collective JPO/LM delivery on that commitment. We know how critical aircraft production is to meeting our services’ Initial Operational Capability dates, beginning with the Marine Corps in 2015, and we’re committed to making that happen.”

The LRIP-6 and -7 aircraft will join the 95 F-35s contracted under LRIPs 1-5. To date, 67 F-35s (including test aircraft) have been delivered from Lockheed Martin's production facility in Fort Worth, Texas. The U.S. and eight partner nations plan to acquire more than 3,100 F-35 fighters. Israel and Japan have also announced plans to purchase the jet under Foreign Military Sales agreements.

The agreement in principle reached between the Government and Lockheed Martin are for air vehicles and do not include the propulsion systems.  The LRIP-6 engine contract is currently being negotiated between the Government and Pratt & Whitney.

http://www.lockheedmartin.com/us/news/press-releases/2013/july/130730ae_principle-agreement-on-lower-cost-f-35-contracts.html