|Up-to-the-minute perspectives on defence, security and peace
issues from and for policy makers and opinion leaders.
Articles taken from Flight International magazine.
1st October: F-35 grounded to fix new software problem
Lockheed Martin has grounded the F-35 to fix a newly-discovered software problem that can cause a fuel boost pump to shut down in flight.
The manufacturer announced the grounding order only a few hours after releasing a statement saying the F-35 was restricted from operating above 10,000ft (3,050m) because of the same problem.
7th October: F-35s resume flight operations, but problems persist
A software glitch grounded the Lockheed Martin F-35 test fleet for at least four days and the short take-off and vertical landing mode remains barred due to an unresolved mechanical problem.
Lockheed lifted a grounding order on 5 October after installing a software fix that prevents a BAE Systems-supplied fuel boost pump system from potentially failing in flight. The grounding order was announced on 1 October, but F-35s had not flown since 28 September.
The F-35B STOVL fleet has been cleared to resume conventional flights, and Lockheed officials expect the type to resume tests shortly.
7th October: New Dutch government to retain JSF commitment
The Netherlands' new coalition government is expected to maintain the nation's commitment to the test phase of Lockheed Martin's F-35 programme, although a decision on whether the type will replace its Lockheed F-16s will not be made for several more years.
8th October: Israel signs $2.75bn agreement for 20 F-35s
The letter of offer and acceptance for the supply of 20 Lockheed Martin F-35 stealth fighters to the Israeli air force was signed in New York on 7 October.
8th October: Lockheed gets funds for UK F-35 landing modification
Lockheed Martin has received a $13 million contract to incorporate a shipborne rolling vertical landing (SRVL) capability with the short take-off and vertical landing F-35B, with the work to be performed on behalf of the UK.
14th October: Israel's F-35 engine selection in dispute between rival manufacturers
An announced engine selection for Israel's first batch of F-35 Joint Strike Fighters has sparked a new dispute between both rival manufacturers.
Pratt & Whitney says the company has received a verbal commitment by Israel to buy the F135 engine to power the first batch of 20 F-35s ordered under a $2.75 billion agreement signed last week.
The General Electric/Rolls-Royce team developing the F136 alternate engine claims the selection process remains ongoing. "We fully anticipate we will have an opportunity to compete with the F136" in Israel, GE says.
19th October: P&W details success with F135 engine STOVL tests
Pratt & Whitney has completed a key test in the process to clear the initial service release for the short take-off and vertical landing version of the F135 engine powering the Lockheed Martin F-35 Joint Strike Fighter.