Air Force

March 22, 2012

F-35 reaches critical juncture after strong year, official says

(U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Joely Santiago
An F-35 Lightning II flies over Destin, Fla., before landing at at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla. According to Defense Department officials, the F-35 development has reached a crucial point in the conversion from conceptualization to actual production.

WASHINGTON — The F-35 Lightning II joint strike fighter program — the centerpiece of future tactical aviation and a key to implementing new military strategic guidance — made strong progress in its development last year, a defense official said today.

Frank Kendall, the acting undersecretary of defense for acquisition, technology and logistics, told the House Armed Services Committee that the fighter aircraft is essential to the Defense Department and that it made “strong progress” in 2011.

“Last fall, the department engaged in a strategy and budget review where everything — and I do mean everything — was on the table,” Kendall said. “After a careful look at the joint strike fighter program, the department determined that we do need the JSF (and) that we need all three variants of the fighter, and that we need the planned inventory of 2,443 jets.”

That said, Kendall added, “you must recognize there is still a long way to go for JSF.” The F-35 flight test program is only about 20 percent complete and “many of the more challenging elements of flight test are still ahead of us,” he said.

Kendall said the F-35 development has reached a crucial point in the conversion from conceptualization to actual production.

“The JSF program is undergoing the critical transition from development to production,” he said. “Historically, this is always a difficult phase for any program, but particularly so for a high-performance aircraft.”

That transition has been even more difficult for the F-35, Kendall said, because the program began production very early, well before flight testing had begun.

That decision for early production resulted in an unprecedented level of concurrency, which drove the need for significant changes in the program, he said.

“With this year’s budget, I believe we are now set on a course for program stability,” Kendall added.

Navy Vice Adm. David Venlet, the program manager for the F-35, also said the program
now is on track.

“The F-35 has schedule and budget realism now going forward,” Venlet said. “It is transparent in the discovery and correction of issues arising in tests that are typical in all fighter aircraft development.”

Venlet told the Congress members he believes the F-35 “is a critical presence in the combined force battle space. It makes many other systems and capabilities and effects better because of the presence of the F-35′s sensors.”

The admiral called the F-35 a “critical presence” to many nations as well as a bond of joint strength across all U.S. military services.

“It is a bond of capability and a bond economically across many nations that raises the level of technology benefit in our militaries and our industries,” he said.

Venlet called the F-35 “the best possible growth platform to incorporate future advances in weapons, sensors and networks.”

The F-35 also is an assurance to service members that “they will succeed in every mission and return home safely to their loved ones.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
(U.S. Air Force Photo by Airman 1st Class Chris Massey)

9/11 Tower Challenge held at UofA

The Never Forgotten 9/11 Tower Challenge was held at the University of Arizona Football Stadium on Sept. 11. Approximately 350 participants, including personnel from D-M, attempted the challenge of climbing 2,071 stairs. This f...
 
 

Core elements work together

LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. — The Air Force has built a suicide prevention program based on 11 overlapping core elements that stress community involvement and leadership in the prevention of suicides in the military: Leadership involvement — Air Force leaders actively support the entire spectrum of suicide prevention initiatives in the community. Addressing suicide...
 
 

Keep sports safe

LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. — Playing sports is fun and it helps people keep in shape and relieve stress. However, if one is not careful, playing sports can result in injuries that keep Airmen on the sideline and out of work. “The main cause of sports-related injuries is over aggressive play and people going...
 

 
DoD

Ice bucket challenge – What does DOD say?

LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. — If you have been following social media lately, you’ve seen the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge all over your newsfeed and Instagram. This has become an internet phenomenon in which people get doused with ice water to raise money to combat Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease....
 
 

Air Force Enlisted Village: Not just a place to live, a place to call home

I first visited the Air Force Enlisted Village as a young first sergeant in 2009, when I was stationed at Tyndall Air Force Base, Florida. I went to visit with the Tyndall Active Airmen’s Association, Tyndall’s E-1 to E-4 Professional Association, and was amazed at what I saw. This was also the first time I...
 
 

Advise Airmen of rights before asking questions

LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. — Every day supervisors are faced with challenging scenarios and situations that require them to engage in efforts to help their Airmen. When this engagement is due to a negative act such as theft, damage to property or other possible legal violations, we must resist the instinct to question them...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin