PARIS: P&W on track with F135 USMC retrofit + AMT

All about the Pratt & Whitney F135 and the (cancelled) General Electric/Rolls-Royce F136
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Unread post15 Jun 2015, 08:25

PARIS: P&W on track with F135 USMC retrofit
15 Jun 2015 Stephen Trimble

"Pratt & Whitney is on track to retrofit more than 10 F135 propulsion systems needed to support the US Marine Corps’ plan to achieve initial operational capability (IOC) for the Lockheed Martin F-35B.

The retrofit will upgrade the short-takeoff-and-vertical-landing (STOVL) propulsion system to a more reliable production configuration standard, says Mike Buongiorno, P&W’s vice-president of the F135 propulsion system.

The initial engines being retrofitted belong to the VMFA-121 squadron, which is the unit being prepared for the IOC designation. At the same time, P&W is also retrofitting several engines belonging to aircraft in the Marines’ operational test and evaluation unit for the F-35B, Buongiorno says.

The retrofits are happening as P&W has completed an accelerated mission test (AMT) programme on an F135 engine, he says.

In the second such test on an F-35 propulsion system, the AMT exposed the F135 engine to the equivalent of seven years of service, with 5,000 cycles and nearly 1,200 operational missions.

The AMT engine is now being inspected to discover any issues, but P&W officials are encouraged that the engine lasted the entire duration of test without requiring a tear-down inspection.

Congress is currently evaluating whether to extend funding for line item in the F-35 budget that supported the last AMT test.

P&W hopes to continue the series of accelerated testing on F135 engines as part of a long-term effort to improve reliability and performance.

Specifically, P&W’s goal is to increase the operational life of the aircraft by 50% using data gleaned from such testing, says Bennett Croswell, president of P&W military engines."

Source: http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articl ... it-413484/
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post15 Jun 2015, 22:25

I suppose it is a good idea to question the value of extending this particular aspect of engine testing.
Previous version of this testing didn't provide the insights that could have led to the prevention of the engine crack-up and aircraft loss in 2014. I get that that alone isn't the sole reason to halt it.

It sounds like P&W is selling congress additional F-135 tests as loss leader research that will yield future savings -- assuming the tests result in findings that are able to be applied (with additional costs and follow up tests).

I don't know enough to understand where these P&W AMT tests fit in with all the other F-135 program tests that are underway and the future enhancement programs that are in planning or in limited contracts right now.
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Unread post16 Jun 2015, 08:42

PARIS: P&W F135 engine burns through accelerated mission trial
15 Jun 2015 James Drew

"A 10-month “accelerated mission test” of Pratt & Whitney’s F135 engine has demonstrated its full-life capability after completing 5,200 engine cycles to replicated seven years and 1,200 sorties.

The company says the conventional takeoff and landing (CTOL) engine for the Lockheed Martin F-35A Joint Strike Fighter was put through its paces at the US Air Force’s Arnold Engine Development Center in Tennessee.

P&W F135 propulsion system vice president Mark Buongiorno expects the F135 will meets its mean times between failure and engine removal targets. He says the engine “meets or exceeds” its specifications and the accelerated mission testing shows a positive “level of robustness”, despite recent reports that call into question the F135’s performance.

He believes the engine will meets all its performance specifications by the conclusion of development. As an example, the Rolls-Royce lift system for the STOVL engine has been proven to ingest 22in [of WATER/RAIN] per hour without losing thrust. Buongiorno also pointed to the recent carrier trial of six F-35Bs, which involved 100 vertical takeoffs...."

Source: http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articl ... on-413625/
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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Unread post16 Jun 2015, 21:34

PARIS: Pratt says ‘dangerous world’ could drive F-35 sales
16 Jun 2015 James Drew

"...Pratt & Whitney president Paul Adams... during a press briefing Tuesday...

...says he is upbeat about the engine’s performance going into the final stages of development, despite a recent damning report by the US Government Accountability Office. He says the operational F-35 fleet’s average readiness rate for 2015 stands at 96.3%, which is “substantially above its target”."

Source: http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articl ... 35-413696/
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/

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