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F-35B/C - Naval Air Discussions (USN & USMC)

This is a discussion on F-35B/C - Naval Air Discussions (USN & USMC) within the Air Force & Aviation forum, part of the Global Defense & Military category; The US Navy's F-35C Lightning II joint strike fighter (JSF) carrier variant (CV) aircraft has successfully conducted the first in-flight ...


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Old October 18th, 2013   #46
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The US Navy's F-35C Lightning II joint strike fighter (JSF) carrier variant (CV) aircraft has successfully conducted the first in-flight refueling trials with a US Air Force's (USAF) KC-135 aircraft at an undisclosed location.

During the testing, the aircraft, also known as CF-1, successfully refuelled with a USAF's Boeing KC-135 Stratotanker aircraft.

After completing this testing, the aircraft now joins the A and B models in proving that all three variants of the F-35 are capable of refuelling from a common tanker platform, despite their different methods.

The US Navy's first F-35C Lightning II carrier variant aircraft squadron, the Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 101 completed the F-35C first flight test at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida, US.

Scheduled to achieve initial operational capability in 2019, the F-35C catapult-assisted takeoff barrier arrested recovery (CATOBAR) aircraft features advanced stealth technology with fighter speed and agility, fully fused sensor information, network-enabled operations and advanced sustainment.

See, here for details.
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Last edited by OPSSG; January 2nd, 2014 at 10:22 AM. Reason: Approved post caught by spam filter & inserted link
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Old January 2nd, 2014   #47
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Dave Majumdar of USNI has a write-up on the role of the F-35C for the US Navy that is worth looking at, here.

Under the US Navy’s forthcoming Naval Integrated Fire Control-Counter Air (NIFC-CA) network, targets discovered by F-35Cs would be passed back to a Northrop Grumman E-2D to be shared with the rest of the carrier strike group. F-35Cs flying deep inside enemy territory would also play a key role in providing terminal guidance for long-range stand-off weapons launched by other platforms.

However, the F-35C will need some data-link modifications, which are expected for the jet’s Block IV configuration. In order to extend the F-35C’s range, the US Navy also hopes to refuel the stealthy new fighter from the service’s future Unmanned Carrier Launched Airborne Surveillance and Strike (UCLASS) aircraft.
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Old January 2nd, 2014   #48
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Dave Majumdar of USNI has a write-up on the role of the F-35C for the US Navy that is worth looking at, here.

Under the US Navy’s forthcoming Naval Integrated Fire Control-Counter Air (NIFC-CA) network, targets discovered by F-35Cs would be passed back to a Northrop Grumman E-2D to be shared with the rest of the carrier strike group. F-35Cs flying deep inside enemy territory would also play a key role in providing terminal guidance for long-range stand-off weapons launched by other platforms.

Just to update, I have read that the carrier quals will take place in October, its still looks to be the Nimitz. brat

However, the F-35C will need some data-link modifications, which are expected for the jet’s Block IV configuration. In order to extend the F-35C’s range, the US Navy also hopes to refuel the stealthy new fighter from the service’s future Unmanned Carrier Launched Airborne Surveillance and Strike (UCLASS) aircraft.
Thanks OPSSG, Dave had an article in USNI that he had published on Dec 23, 13 on qualing the production tailhook, it had been testing at Patuxant, and was being moved to Lakehurst prior to carrier quals aboard the Nimitz during early 2014. It will be very exciting to see the first pics of the C coming aboard and being launched from the Nimitz. brat

Last edited by Air Force Brat; March 10th, 2014 at 12:27 AM. Reason: update
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Old March 18th, 2014   #49
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A report appears at Aviation News | Aviation Industry & Airline Statistics | flightglobal.com that the USN is requesting funding for 22 additional EA-18G Growlers on the 2015 budget. Is this a backdoor way of getting more Superhornets? Is this a sign of the USN's concerns with the F-35C progress?
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Old March 18th, 2014   #50
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A report appears at Aviation News | Aviation Industry & Airline Statistics | flightglobal.com that the USN is requesting funding for 22 additional EA-18G Growlers on the 2015 budget. Is this a backdoor way of getting more Superhornets? Is this a sign of the USN's concerns with the F-35C progress?
Navy just wants to bulk up it's EW capabilities above the minimum level they are currently at. It's also,a tribute to Boeing's lobbying prowess but it's not a given that Congress will fund the request.
As for the F-35C, IOC is targeted for 2018 with a threshold of 2019 so Navy can afford to wait. I expect Navy to place substantial orders in the next couple of years.
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Old March 25th, 2014   #51
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Navy just wants to bulk up it's EW capabilities above the minimum level they are currently at. It's also,a tribute to Boeing's lobbying prowess but it's not a given that Congress will fund the request.
As for the F-35C, IOC is targeted for 2018 with a threshold of 2019 so Navy can afford to wait. I expect Navy to place substantial orders in the next couple of years.
All very true, and many of us hope the F-18 line at Boeing will continue to remain in production. The Growler will bring a very robust integration with the F-35, and allow the fourth gens to "piggy-back" off the fifth gens and provide a much more comprehensive situational awareness to the war-fighters, so all in all a very good "bang for the buck".
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Old June 4th, 2014   #52
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Defense-aerospace.com has an article about the F-35C's sink rate being dropped from 26fps to 21fps, a 20 % change. Although this does not concern international customers (no "C" export orders) is this a concern? Anyone know the maximum sink rate for the Superhornet?
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Old June 4th, 2014   #53
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All very true, and many of us hope the F-18 line at Boeing will continue to remain in production. The Growler will bring a very robust integration with the F-35, and allow the fourth gens to "piggy-back" off the fifth gens and provide a much more comprehensive situational awareness to the war-fighters, so all in all a very good "bang for the buck".
I think there will be continued pressure to fund more Growlers just to keep the line going as Boeing is still hoping Canada might opt for SH/Growlers instead of F-35As but a decision might not be forthcoming fast enough for Boeing. I am guessing no SH or F-35 commitment until late 2016 from Canada.
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Old June 4th, 2014   #54
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A reduced rate of sink increases the life of the undercarriage i'd imagine because the system is having to control a slower impact on landing.
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Old June 4th, 2014   #55
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A reduced rate of sink increases the life of the undercarriage i'd imagine because the system is having to control a slower impact on landing.
I guess the issue is both a combination of impact and weight. Impact is a vector, forward landing speed and vertical drop. I saw a list of approach landing speeds for various carrier jets and the F-35 was in the range of the Superhornet but it is heavier I believe. What amazed me was the Tomcat's much lower approach speed, that expensive swing wing was a big advantage at the low end as well.

I guess the endurance of the C's undercarriage will something to be determined.
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Old June 4th, 2014   #56
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I guess the issue is both a combination of impact and weight. Impact is a vector, forward landing speed and vertical drop. I saw a list of approach landing speeds for various carrier jets and the F-35 was in the range of the Superhornet but it is heavier I believe. What amazed me was the Tomcat's much lower approach speed, that expensive swing wing was a big advantage at the low end as well.

I guess the endurance of the C's undercarriage will something to be determined.
F-35 isnt a whole lot heavier than SH. With th F35 i would imagine its systems would make for a perfect landing much more likely and doable.

The article even states that it was successfully tested at 26 fps in 2010. Its how people are reading into this (ie as a negative). Its not.
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Old June 4th, 2014   #57
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F-35 isnt a whole lot heavier than SH. With th F35 i would imagine its systems would make for a perfect landing much more likely and doable.

The article even states that it was successfully tested at 26 fps in 2010. Its how people are reading into this (ie as a negative). Its not.

You are correct, the weight difference is indeed minimal, about a ton. I have seen one post claiming the SH was 5 tons lighter. Other posts claim this reduced sink rate is due to modifications to get the tail hook issue resolved. Again, as Canada is buying the "A" version, this is not an issue for us. Still, knowing the maximum sink rate for the SH would be interesting to know as the forward approach speed for both is almost equal. As for negative reading into the F-35, it seems to be an international sport, sadly.
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Old June 4th, 2014   #58
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The F-35C looks to be all set for landing trials aboard a carrier sometime in October. Detractors were quick to seize on early failed arrestment tests blaming the short hook arm and predicting the necessity for a major redesign. Not a peep from them this time,around. It should be noted that the X-47B has a similarly short hook arm but it traps near flawlessly


U.S. Deputy Program Manager Outlines F-35 Fixes | Aviation International News

...The initially deficient tail hook of the F-35C carrier variant has been redesigned and proven at the Navy’s carrier suitability test site in Lakehurst, N.J., without requiring structural changes to the airframe, Mahr said. The redesigned tail hook catches an arresting wire “comparable to that of legacy airplanes, including the F-18,” he said. “Nobody catches the wire every time, but we’re in the high 90-percent [range]. The hook works.” The Navy plans to fly an F-35C for the first time to an aircraft carrier, the USS Nimitz, this fall...
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Old June 9th, 2014   #59
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The F-35C looks to be all set for landing trials aboard a carrier sometime in October. Detractors were quick to seize on early failed arrestment tests blaming the short hook arm and predicting the necessity for a major redesign. Not a peep from them this time,around. It should be noted that the X-47B has a similarly short hook arm but it traps near flawlessly


U.S. Deputy Program Manager Outlines F-35 Fixes | Aviation International News

...The initially deficient tail hook of the F-35C carrier variant has been redesigned and proven at the Navy’s carrier suitability test site in Lakehurst, N.J., without requiring structural changes to the airframe, Mahr said. The redesigned tail hook catches an arresting wire “comparable to that of legacy airplanes, including the F-18,” he said. “Nobody catches the wire every time, but we’re in the high 90-percent [range]. The hook works.” The Navy plans to fly an F-35C for the first time to an aircraft carrier, the USS Nimitz, this fall...
Yes, and I can't wait to see them bringing the C aboard the Nimitz, it will be more F-35 candy, those vids will be coming soon, and I predict the C will perform famously, as the FCS is gonna make that a piece of cake compared to legacy platforms...should practically land itself ?????
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Old June 13th, 2014   #60
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Would here have been any merit in having a CATOBAR F-35 that could accept either the conventional F135 engine or the lift-fan version thus allowing more flexibility?
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