F-35s grounded as precaution after crack found in engine blade

By on Monday, February 25th, 2013

All F-35s have been grounded as a precaution after a routine engine inspection revealed a crack on an engine blade, Defense Department officials said Feb. 22 here.

Officials call this a “cautionary suspension of flight.” The Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps fly F-35s.

Inspectors found the crack in an F135 engine installed in an F-35A Lightning II at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif. This is the conventional take-off and landing version of the joint strike fighter.

Officials are shipping the engine and its associated hardware to Pratt & Whitney’s engine facility in Middletown, Conn., to conduct more thorough evaluation and root cause analysis.

Officials said the grounding is precautionary. All F-35 flight operations have been suspended until the investigation is complete, officials said, and it is too early to know the fleetwide impact.

“The F-35 Joint Program Office is working closely with Pratt & Whitney and Lockheed Martin at all F-35 locations to ensure the integrity of the engine, and to return the fleet safely to flight as soon as possible,” a Defense Department news release said.

F 35s grounded as precaution after crack found in engine bladeF 35s grounded as precaution after crack found in engine bladeF 35s grounded as precaution after crack found in engine bladeF 35s grounded as precaution after crack found in engine blade
F 35s grounded as precaution after crack found in engine bladeF 35s grounded as precaution after crack found in engine bladeF 35s grounded as precaution after crack found in engine bladeF 35s grounded as precaution after crack found in engine blade

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