HomeDefenseCritical F-35 Testing Hampered by 65 Unresolved Problems

Critical F-35 Testing Hampered by 65 Unresolved Problems


The Lockheed Martin F-35 Joint Strike Fighter continues to fail to satisfy basic testing specifications in at least 65 instances, according to a report from the Office of the Director, Operational Test and Evaluation (DOT&E).

The readiness evaluation for JSE [joint simulation environment] trials was concluded by the JPO [F-35 Joint Project Office] in September 2023. Notwithstanding 65 deficiencies against the baseline JSE requirements, the JPO certified the system as ready for testing, according to a report released on February 3.

According to the report, immature and deficient Block 4 mission systems software and avionics stability issues with the new Technology Refresh 3 (TR-3) hardware entering Lot 15 production aircraft continue to cause delays in the F-35 programme development cycle.

Consequently, the delivery of production lot 15 TR-3 aircraft has been halted pending the resolution of avionics issues and the completion of additional testing. According to the report, the F-35 JPO could not adequately plan and programme for hardware modifications of the upgraded hardware configuration due to these delays.

Furthermore, the report states that the essential flight test equipment, encompassing open-air battle shaping, remaining TR-2 configuration instrumentation, and upgraded TR-3 aircraft, is not entirely contractually covered and will not be delivered on time.

It was reported in September 2023 that Lockheed Martin would “once more” postpone the delivery of the most recent upgraded versions of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter to the United States armed forces due to ongoing software issues that are required to operate the aircraft’s weaponry.

The company announced that it has revised its F-35 TR-3 delivery schedule, placing the initial TR-3 aircraft in service from April to June 2024. Lockheed stated that the company anticipated delivering 97 aircraft in 2023, all of which would be in the TR-2 configuration.

Previously, delivery of the aircraft’s troubled and protracted TR-3 variant was scheduled to commence in December 2023; however, the software had not undergone testing validation, according to the manufacturer.

According to the statement, the company anticipated maintaining its F-35 production rate 156 per year while concurrently finalising TR-3 software development and testing. Furthermore, Lockheed maintained its commitment to procuring the essential hardware from its suppliers to furnish the F-35 with this critical combat capability.

Frontier India News Network
Frontier India News Networkhttps://frontierindia.com/briefs
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