F-35 Test Delays Continue, [although] Combat Debut

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spazsinbad

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Unread post28 Sep 2019, 05:59

F-35 Testing Delays Continue, Even as Aircraft Has Made Its Combat Debut [BEST READ IT ALL at SOURCE]
27 Sep 2019 Oriana Pawlyk

"The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter will not complete its already-delayed formal operational test phase this fall because of a setback in the testing process, according to a source close to the program.

While the F-35 Initial Operational Test and Evaluation (IOT&E) was supposed to be complete by late summer, a source with knowledge of its development said the testing is still incomplete due to an unfinished phase known as the Joint Simulation Environment. The JSE simulations project characteristics such as weather, geography and range, allowing test pilots to prove the aircraft's "full capabilities against the full range of required threats and scenarios," according to a 2015 Director, Operational Test & Evaluation (DOT&E) report.

The F-35 Joint Program Office (JPO), in coordination with the Defense Department, confirmed that the Joint Simulation Environment testing phase is still being worked through, but could not provide a timeline for its completion. "This final phase of IOT&E will occur when the JSE is ready to adequately complete the testing," DoD spokesman Air Force Lt. Col Mike Andrews said in a statement Wednesday. "The JSE is required to adequately perform F-35 IOT&E against modern adversary aircraft and dense ground threats in realistic scenarios."...

The latest delay raises doubts about when the stealth jet will hit its next crucial benchmark: expanded production....

...JPO spokeswoman Brandi Schiff said the JSE is in the process of integrating Lockheed's "'F-35 In-A-Box' (FIAB) model, which is the simulation of F-35 sensor systems and the overall aircraft integration." FIAB is the F-35 aircraft simulation that plugs into the JSE environment.

"This integration and the associated verification activities are lagging initial projections and delaying IOT&E entry into the JSE," Schiff said. Lockheed Martin originally proposed a Virtual Simulator program for this testing. But in 2015, the government instead opted to transition the work -- which would become the JSE -- to Naval Air Systems Command at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Maryland....

...Despite the testing delay, production continues, according to Lockheed. "We have delivered on all requirements for this software to be integrated with NAVAIR's JSE and are providing our full support to ensure successful integration and testing as soon as possible," company spokesman Mike Friedman said Friday. "F-35 production continues to ramp up...."

Source: https://www.military.com/daily-news/201 ... debut.html
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steve2267

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Unread post28 Sep 2019, 14:56

Reading between the lines, it would seem all the flying has been completed? Did the article mention anything about how the jet performed in those tests? While I try not to assume, it would seem reasonable that if the jet had not passed some flying tests, that news would be screamed from the journalistic rooftops. Therefore, it would stand to reason that the jet passed all the flying tests, probably with flying colors, as I haven't read sh*t to the contrary.

So... the jet passes all the flying tests... but is hung up in completing this "virtual computer simulation testing" because the gummint decided four years ago to install some new fangled, gee-whiz virtual flight / combat simulation environment... which I would not be surprised to learn has suffered from mission creep... ("gee... that's cool... now what if we only added XYZ to this... that would be the ballz...")

The Hornet mafia wouldn't have anything to do with the Navy having issues completing this JSE simulation environment, would it? :devil:
Take an F-16, stir in A-7, dollop of F-117, gob of F-22, dash of F/A-18, sprinkle with AV-8B, stir well + bake. Whaddya get? F-35.
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Unread post18 Oct 2019, 18:53

The F-35 may hit full rate production more than a year late
18 Oct 2019 Valerie Insinna

"WASHINGTON — The Defense Department will not clear the F-35 for full-rate production this year, and it may even have to push that milestone as far as January 2021, the Pentagon’s acquisition executive said Friday.

The Pentagon had intended to make a full-rate production decision — also known as Milestone C — by the end of 2019. But because the Joint Simulation Environment continues to face delays in its own development, the Defense Department will have to defer that milestone by as many as 13 months, Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment Ellen Lord told reporters during a news conference.

“We actually had signed out of the JPO [F-35 Joint Program Office] earlier this week a program deviation report that documented expected schedule threshold breach in the Milestone C full rate production decision of up to 13 months,” Lord said. It is unclear whether the delay will cause an increase in program costs....

...“We are not making as quick progress on the Joint Simulation Environment, integrating the F-35 into it. It is a critical portion of IOT&E. We work closely with Dr. Behler and DOT&E. They are making excellent progress out on the range with the F-35, but we need to do the work in the Joint Simulation Environment,” Lord said. “We have collectively decided that we need to the JSE absolutely correct before we proceed, so I will make some decisions about when that full rate production decision will be made shortly," she added.

Specifically, the Defense Department and F-35 prime contractor Lockheed Martin are lagging behind in integrating the "'F-35 In-A-Box” — the simulated model of the F-35 and its sensors and weapons — into the JSE, reported Military.com, which broke the news of the testing delay in September...."

Source: https://www.defensenews.com/air/2019/10 ... year-late/
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Unread post19 Oct 2019, 00:47

Sounds like they underestimated the complexity of the system, the Joint Simulation Environment, and how to integrate/ model the F-35 into it.
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Unread post19 Oct 2019, 01:40

F-35 Program Facing Delays in Full-Rate Production, As DoD Struggles to Integrate Into Simulators
18 Oct 2019 Megan Eckstein

"The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is performing well in the real world, but challenges incorporating it into a Defense Department simulation system will delay DoD from being able to move into full-rate production, the Pentagon’s top weapons-buyer told reporters today....

...“We actually just have signed out of the [Joint Program Office] earlier this week a program deviation report that documented expected schedule threshold breach in the Milestone C full-rate production decision milestone of up to 13 months. So what this is the result of – and I follow this very carefully – is the fact that we are not making as quick progress on the Joint Simulation Environment integrating the F-35 into it,” she said.

“It is a critical portion of [Initial Operational Test and Evaluation]. We work closely with Dr. (Robert) Behler at [Director of Operational Test and Evaluation]: they’re making excellent progress out on the range with the F-35, but we need to do the work in the Joint Simulation Environment. We have collectively decided that we need to get the JSE absolutely correct before we proceed, so I’m going to make some decisions about when that full-rate production decision will be made shortly.” The 13-month delay would push the Milestone C decision from this December to as late as January 2021....

...As for the procurement of new jets, Lord said “we’ve reached a handshake agreement with Lockheed Martin and continue to negotiate on the next F-35 lot buy for 478 aircraft. I won’t get into any specifics,” but she vowed to provide details of the negotiations once a contract was finalized. The Pentagon and the jet-builder reached this handshake agreement for Lots 12, 13 and 14 in June. The agreement covers three lots but would be written as a contract for Lot 12, with options for the next two lots. Once the Pentagon declares Milestone C and full-rate production, the department could look at multiyear contracts for Lots 15 and beyond – if DoD feels comfortable with the program – as a way to potentially trim more cost out of the program."

Source: https://news.usni.org/2019/10/18/f-35-p ... simulators
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Unread post19 Oct 2019, 05:40

478 F-35 in the next 3 lots is 159.3 F-35 per year, averaged for 12, 13 and 14.

Lot 12 was only supposed to be 140, and recent LRIP has exceeded planned production numbers per Lot, and there's nothing to prevent that occurring in Lot 12 as well. The price for 'A' officially falls to $80 mill within Lot 13 in 2021, but if production turned out to be ~10% higher than planned for Lot 12, it could occur in 2020. It appears there's scope for that.
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Unread post19 Oct 2019, 16:00

Pentagon delays F-35 full-rate production decision by 13 months
18 Oct 2019 Pat Host

"Key Points
----- • The Pentagon is pushing back its F-35 full-rate production decision by more than a year owing to issues with Joint
-------- Simulation Environment progress
----- • The facility is required to perform high-end threats that cannot be replicated in an open-air range...

...Dan Grazier, military fellow with the Project on Government Oversight (POGO) watchdog group in Washington, DC, told Jane's on 18 October that range restrictions prevent the F-35 from being tested against very high-end missions such as super dense, highly-integrated air defence networks. In theory, he said, the Pentagon should be able to replicate these missions in the simulator. Grazier said the Pentagon must have a properly functioning JSE to complete initial operational test and evaluation (IOT&E), which is required to properly inform the FRP decision.

There will be at least three JSE facilities. Grazier said the US Navy (USN) has been developing one at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Maryland, for approximately three years. The US Air Force (USAF) is also planning on a pair of its own JSEs with groundbreaking for both facilities scheduled for May 2020. The first is a 21,988 sq m facility planned for Edwards Air Force Base in California, while the other 15,535 sq m facility will be located at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada."

Source: https://www.janes.com/article/92039/pen ... -13-months
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Unread post19 Oct 2019, 16:23

Very long article about other stuff so I'm free to post most relevant to the F-35 with 'bits 'bout Turkey & India' excluded.
F-35 Integration Issues May Delay Full-Rate Production By More Than One Year
18 Oct 2019 John A. Tirpak​​

"The Pentagon’s decision to start full-rate production of the multinational F-35 fighter may be delayed from December to as late as January 2021, due to difficulties with integrating the jet into the Defense Department’s virtual wargaming system, Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment Ellen Lord said Oct. 18....

...“We … just had signed out of the [Joint Program Office] earlier this week a program deviation report” of a “schedule threshold breach in the Milestone C full-rate production decision of up to 13 months,” Lord said. She attributed the delay to slow progress adding the F-35 into the Joint Simulation Environment, a critical part of the fighter’s fielding process.

Lord and other acquisition leaders “have collectively decided that we need to get the JSE absolutely correct before we proceed” with Milestone C, she said. She added that she hopes to “shortly” make certain decisions about moving forward with full-rate production.

Although the Pentagon and F-35 builder Lockheed Martin have had a “handshake deal” on the next 478 F-35s for months, they are still negotiating a final agreement on an upcoming contract. Officials previously expected to have that in place by the end of 2019.

The OT&E program is otherwise doing well, Lord said.

“We’re moving forward with the program [and] the aircraft are performing exceptionally well,” she said. “We’re very excited about the progress, so it does not change what we’re doing on the production line, what we’re doing in development, or sustainment.”..."

Source: http://www.airforcemag.com/Features/Pag ... -Year.aspx
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Unread post20 Oct 2019, 00:46

Shouldn't really have any impact; you can still nominate a program for an MYP before it has gotten FRP
approval. They weren't planning to do the former until FY21 anyway.
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Unread post21 Oct 2019, 14:56

DoD site, Transcript of all responses from Ellen M. Lord Press Briefing. (Extract only F-35 part.)
https://www.defense.gov/Newsroom/Transc ... acquisiti/
Department Of Defense Press Briefing By Undersecretary Of Defense For Acquisition And Sustainment Ellen M. Lord
OCT. 18, 2019 Ellen M. Lord, Undersecretary Of Defense For Acquisition And Sustainment
Ellen M. Lord
As the F-35 fleet continues to grow, we're also growing our sustainment capabilities to ensure these aircraft are ready and capable. Across the international partnership and around the world, the F-35 continues to show us why it is the most advanced, lethal and interoperable aircraft ever developed.
In INDOPACOM, we have a VMFA-122s, F-35Bs deployed aboard the USS America, providing a ready and capable force to ensure security and stability in the region. Elsewhere, the U.S. Air Force is ready and engaged in security operations necessary to ensure stability within the CENTCOM theater.
Finally, our allies have made tremendous progress integrating the F-35 into their tactical air fleets, as demonstrated by recent deployments from the U.K. and Italy.

On F-35 production, we reached a handshake agreement with Lockheed Martin and continue to negotiate on the next F-35 lot buy for 478 aircraft. I won't get into any specifics, but when it's official, we will do a press briefing right here to announce the details.
On Turkey and the F-35, there has been no change to return Turkey to the F-35 program. The S-400 air defense system, which is incompatible with the F-35, remains in Turkey. As I said previously, Turkey still makes 900 parts for the F-35 and will continue to do so until Turkey's F-35 supply chain responsibilities transfer at the end of March 2020.
I know there are questions on the executive order on Syria-related sanctions, but at this time we're working through those details, so I can't provide anything further. We'll provide more information when we can.

Q: F-35 -- you -- you touch -- there are big milestones coming up supposedly in December, forward production. That presupposes the I.T. -- the current combat testing, including simulation testing, is completed, the beyond LRIP report required by law is completed and the DCMA does a production readiness review.

MS. LORD: Exactly.

Q: Is that all going to happen by December, or is realistically, will this major milestone slip into next year?

MS. LORD: We -- we actually just had signed out of the JPO earlier this week a program deviation report that documented expected schedule threshold breach in the milestone C full-rate production decision milestone of up to 13 months.
So what this is a result of -- and I follow this very carefully -- is the fact that we are not making as quick progress on the Joint Simulation Environment, integrating the F-35 into it. It is a critical portion of IOT&E. We work closely with Dr. Behler and at DOT&E. They're making excellent progress out on the range with the F-35, but we need to do the work in the Joint Simulation Environment.
We have collectively decided that we need to get the JSE absolutely correct before we proceed. So I'm going to make some decisions about when that full-rate production decision will be made, shortly, and I'll get back on that.

Q: In English, though, the 13-month deviation means a milestone -- the full-rate production decision won't happen in December, but could happen in December of next year or January of 2021?

MS. LORD: Potentially, potentially. Yes.
So I will not be making that decision in December.
That being said, we're moving forward with the program. The aircraft are performing exceptionally well and we're very excited about the progress, so it does not change what we're doing on the production line, what we're doing in terms of development or sustainment.

I read a previous thread where JSE articles were posted.
viewtopic.php?f=22&t=19021&start=60
What a big facility the JSE is! :doh: (I don't know much about JSE, but this Facilities is big, so I think it will take time.)
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Unread post22 Oct 2019, 02:00

Joint Simulation Environment ... one big gigantic checkbox :mrgreen:
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Unread post22 Oct 2019, 02:45

JSE...Hmmm, sounds like a potential back door to IP/tech data. Betcha there aren’t any Gordian knots to resolve in this lash up, eh?

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Unread post15 Nov 2019, 10:22

F-35 Operational Evaluation May Resume in Mid-2020, Pentagon Tester Says
13 Nov 2019 Richard R. Burgess

"WASHINGTON — The Pentagon’s head of operational test and evaluation said the earliest the F-35 Lightning II strike fighter’s Initial Operational Test and Evaluation (IOT&E) could resume is mid-2020, when the Joint Simulation Environment is ready. That evaluation, paused earlier this year, must be completed before full-rate production of the F-35 can be approved.

The full-rate production decision likely will be delayed until early fiscal 2021. The Defense Department is planning for low-rate initial production through Lot 14 of the F-35. Under low-rate production, more than 458 F-35s of all three variants have been fielded so far. The F-35A and F-35B have flown in combat.

“So far the JOTT [Joint Operational Test Team] has conducted 91% of the open air test missions, actual weapons employment, cybersecurity testing, deployments and comparison testing with fourth-generation fighters, including the congressionally directed comparison test of the F-35A and the A-10C,” said Robert Behler, the Pentagon’s director of operational test and evaluation, testifying Nov. 13 before a joint hearing of the Readiness and Tactical Air and Land Force subcommittees of the House Armed Services Committee. “IOT&E events have assessed the F-35 across a variety of offensive and defensive roles.

“Operational suitability of the F-35 fleet remains below service expectations,” Behler said. “In particular, no F-35 variant meets the specified reliability or maintainability metrics. In short, [for] all variants, the aircraft are breaking more often and are taking longer to fix. However, there are several suitability metrics that are showing signs of improvement this year.

“There are two phases of IOT&E remaining,” he said. “The first is electronic warfare testing against robust surface-to-air threats at the Point Mugu [California] Sea Range. The other is testing against dense surface and air threats in the Joint Simulation Environment [JSE] at the Naval Air Station Patuxent River [Maryland]. I would approve the start of these tests when the necessary test infrastructure is ready.

“The Joint Simulation Environment is essential,” he said. “The JSE is a man-in-the-loop synthetic environment that uses actual [F-35] aircraft software. It is designed to provide scalable, high-fidelity, operationally realistic simulation. I would like to emphasize that the JSE will be the only venue available other than actual combat against peer adversaries. To adequately evaluate the F-35, due to the inherent limitations of open-air testing, these limitations do not permit a full and adequate test of the aircraft against the required types and density of modern threat systems, including weapons, aircraft, and electronic warfare that are currently fielded by our near-peer adversaries. Integrating the F-35 into the JSE is a very complex challenge, but is required to complete IOT&E, which will lead to my final IOTE report.”

The current schedule indicates that the JSE will not be ready to start final phase of operational testing until July [2020], he said. Behler said that his organization has been closely with the F-35 Joint Program Office and the Naval Air Systems Command at Patuxent River to determine when the JSE will be ready. There are enormous challenges and there are a lot of unknown unknows still out there.

“I do believe the JSE development — the “F-35 in a Box” integration into JSE — is on track,” said Lt. Gen. Eric T. Fick, program executive officer for the F-35, who also testified at the hearing. The F-35 in a Box is the simulation of the aircraft and its sensors that fits in the JSE.

“To put it in context, we’re not only integrating the F-35 in a Box into this environment, we’re also integrating all of the blue and red threat vehicles — ground systems, airborne systems, weapons, electronic warfare — and all of the things that you need to bring a full 8-on-8 [aircraft] or greater scenario to life in a synthetic environment,” Fick said. “We’re trying to come as close to a combat environment without putting iron in the sky.”"

Source: https://seapowermagazine.org/f-35-opera ... ster-says/
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Unread post15 Nov 2019, 14:27



Pentagon, Lockheed Martin continue dispute over F-35 intellectual property rights


Pat Host, Washington, DC - Jane's Defence Weekly
14 November 2019

Key Points
Lockheed Martin and the Pentagon remain in conflict over F-35 intellectual property rights
This has delayed the implementation of a critical capability required for the programme to declare full rate production


https://www.janes.com/article/92571/pen ... rty-rights

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