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F-35 Lightning II goes Supersonic

F-35 JSF Joint Strike Fighter

U.S. Navy photo: Chief Petty Officer Eric A. Clement

Written on November 15, 2008  8:00 am by Frontier India Strategic and Defence

USA flag billowing The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter flew supersonic for the first time yesterday, achieving another milestone. The aircraft accelerated to Mach 1.05, or about 680 miles per hour. The test validated the F-35 Lightning II’s capability to operate beyond the speed of sound and was accomplished with a full internal load of inert or « dummy » weapons on the one-hour flight.

« The F-35 transitioned from subsonic to supersonic just as our engineers and our computer modeling had predicted, » said Jon Beesley, Lockheed Martin’s chief F-35 test pilot. « I continue to be impressed with the aircraft’s power and strong acceleration, F-35 JSF Joint Strike Fighterand I’m pleased that its precise handling qualities are retained in supersonic flight, even with a payload of 5,400 pounds (2,450 kilograms) in the weapons bays. »

F-35  USAF photo  Senior Airman Julius Delos Reyes

Beesley said it was also a significant achievement for a test aircraft to fly supersonic for the first time with the weight of a full internal load of weapons. The milestone was achieved on the 69th flight of F-35 aircraft AA-1. Beesley climbed to 30,000 feet (9,144 meters) and accelerated to Mach 1.05, or about 680 miles per hour, over a rural area in north Texas. The F-35 accomplished four transitions through the sound barrier, spending a total of eight minutes in supersonic flight. The flight was preceded by a high-subsonic mission earlier in the day. Future testing will gradually expand the flight envelope out to the aircraft’s top speed of Mach 1.6, which the F-35 is designed to achieve with a full internal load of weapons.

F-35 AA-1, a conventional takeoff and landing variant (CTOL), and F-35 BF-1, a short takeoff/vertical landing variant (STOVL), together have combined for 83 test flights.

X-35 JSF fighter aircraftThe F-35 is a supersonic, multi-role, 5th generation stealth fighter. Three F-35 variants derived from a common design, developed together and using the same sustainment infrastructure worldwide will replace at least 13 types of aircraft for 11 nations initially, making the Lightning II the most cost-effective fighter program in history.

X-35 JSF – U.S. Air Force photo

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TRIAL IMPERIAL HAMMER in SARDINIA

French Dassault Mirage F1CRs ER 02/033 Savoie reconnaissance aircraft

Mirages F1CR belonging to the 2/33 Savoie Reconnaissance Squadron.

Seventy French airmen along with fourteen other nations took part in an electronic warfare field test in Sardinia from September 27th to October 17th.

Boeing E-3 Sentry airborne early warning and control AWACS

French AWACS

This NATO exercise called « Trial Imperial Hammer » aimed at training the armed forces to fuse information gathered from various inteligence sources – aircraft, radars, satellites. An AWACS from the 702 French Air Force Base at Avord; 2 Mirages F1CR from 2/33 « Savoie » Reconnaissance Squadron at Reims, and a C160 Gabriel from Metz took part in the implementation of this field trial together with the French Navy and the French Army.

French Air Force C-160G Gabriel electronic warfare aircraft

C-160 Gabriel

The development of the information management and communication capabilities is critical to ensure support for the operations.

Source et photos: SIRPA AIR (http://www.defense.gouv.fr/air/)

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Boeing Posts Lower Third-Quarter Results on Reduced Commercial Deliveries

  • Third-quarter revenues declined to $15.3 billion from $16.5 billion as labor strike and supplier production problems pushed airplane deliveries out of the quarter.
  • EPS declined to $0.96 per share, reduced by an estimated $0.60 on the lower deliveries and by $0.08 due to tax adjustments.
  • Backlog grew to a record $349 billion as near-term demand remains strong.
  • Updated financial guidance to be provided after strike concludes.

BOEING courtesy (www.boeing.com)

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