Finally ... First F-35B Flight out of Eglin

Production milestones, roll-outs, test flights, service introduction and other milestones.
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spazsinbad

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Unread post22 May 2012, 20:31

Finally ... First F-35B Flight out of Eglin Amy Butler May 22, 2012

http://www.aviationweek.com/Blogs.aspx? ... 32fa72105e

"The F-35B today conducted its first flight out of Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., one of several steps needed to officially stand up pilot training for the new Lockheed Martin stealthy jet at the base....

...To date, 47 F-35A sorties have been executed at Eglin in addition to today’s F-35B flight, says Chrissy Cuttita, a spokeswoman for the base...."

FINALLY? more stuff at the Blogess site! :roll:
RAN FAA A4G: http://tinyurl.com/ctfwb3t http://tinyurl.com/ccmlenr http://www.youtube.com/user/bengello/videos
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Unread post22 May 2012, 22:50

another take on the announcement;

http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articl ... fb-372203/

USMC F-35B starts local area flights at Eglin AFB

USMC Maj Joseph Bachmann, one of two test pilots assigned to the base, flew the first F-35B local area flight.
:)
"Marine Fighter Attack Training Squadron 501 (VMFAT-501) has had an exciting year with the arrival of our first three aircraft in January, the official roll out ceremony in February and now generating sorties along with other military service and contract partners here," says USMC Lt Col David Berke, commander of VMFAT-501.
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Unread post23 May 2012, 01:22

Another go here with a lot more background information:

F-35B makes first flight at Eglin By Philip Ewing | May 22nd, 2012

http://www.dodbuzz.com/2012/05/22/f-35b ... -at-eglin/

"...“It’s amazing to believe 100 years ago Marine Corps aviation started and here today we launched a fifth generation aircraft,” said Marine Sergeant Eric Spence, VMFAT-501 plane captain for the first F-35B sortie. “It’s history in the making. Every time one of those engines fires up I get pumped up and today it was a little extra.” The power plant mechanic said he prepared for the last six months by being involved in any F-35 maintenance training he could at the 33rd FW...."

More at the JUMPjet URL!
RAN FAA A4G: http://tinyurl.com/ctfwb3t http://tinyurl.com/ccmlenr http://www.youtube.com/user/bengello/videos
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Unread post23 May 2012, 10:48

Some info about the other Lightnings at Eglin....

USMC F-35B starts local area flights over Eglin AFB By Dave Majumdar on May 23, 2012

http://www.flightglobal.com/blogs/the-d ... rea-f.html

"...But while today was the STOVL model's day [22 May 2012], the wing's F-35A fleet is performing very well, a senior USAF official says.

The F-35A had already flown 47 sorties to date, but today they added to that total.

The unit "launched a two turn two of F-35As, another first," the senior official says. That makes "for a total of five sorties flown today."..."
RAN FAA A4G: http://tinyurl.com/ctfwb3t http://tinyurl.com/ccmlenr http://www.youtube.com/user/bengello/videos
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Unread post24 May 2012, 01:48

Anuvver story with some good pilot comments...

Initial F-35 training cadre starts JSF transition 23 May 2012 by Dave Majumdar

http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articl ... on-372258/

"...Kloos had actually started his F-35 academics and simulator training last October. The training ran through January and culminated in engine runs and taxi trials. But because the military flight release for the F-35 was delayed, he had not had an opportunity to fly the stealthy new jet until 8 May. That was when the USAF Aeronautical Systems Center amended the F-35A's flight release to allow non-test pilots to fly the aircraft.

"The power was pretty nice, its got a pretty big engine in it," Kloos says. The F-35 feels "stiffer" than an F-16 and rumbles more under G-loading or at higher angles of attack. "For how big the airplane is in weight and overall size compared to an F-16, I thought it was very well balanced, powerful, and very easy to fly," he says.

Kloos says that he is pleased with the aircraft's performance thus far given the system's immaturity. No previous fighter has shown the kind of stability and sortie generation rate that the F-35 is showing at this early stage, he says...."

Much More at the URL! 8)
RAN FAA A4G: http://tinyurl.com/ctfwb3t http://tinyurl.com/ccmlenr http://www.youtube.com/user/bengello/videos
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Unread post24 May 2012, 11:01

Some MORE Kloos:

Eglin F-35 initial cadre starts transition training By Dave Majumdar on May 24, 2012

http://www.flightglobal.com/blogs/the-d ... start.html

"...33rd FW is working on getting its first non-test pilot checked out on the F-35. Lt Col Lee Kloos, the commander of the 58th Fighter Squadron, should be finished his six-ride transition course in the next week or two.

The veteran F-16 operational tester and Weapons School grad shared some of his impressions the F-35. The jet is powerful, stable and easy to fly.

"One of the things this aircraft usually takes hit on is the handling because it's not an F-22," Kloos says. "An F-22 is unique in its ability to maneuver and we'll never be that."

But compared to other aircraft, a combat-configured F-35 probably edges out other existing designs carrying a similar load-out. "When I'm downrange in Badguyland that's the configuration I need to have confidence in maneuvering, and that's where I think the F-35 starts to edge out an aircraft like the F-16," Kloos says.

A combat-configured F-16 is encumbered with weapons, external fuel tanks, and electronic countermeasures pods that sap the jet's performance. "You put all that on, I'll take the F-35 as far as handling characteristic and performance, that's not to mention the tactical capabilities and advancements in stealth," he says. "It's of course way beyond what the F-16 has currently."

The F-35's acceleration is "very comparable" to a Block 50 F-16. "Again, if you cleaned off an F-16 and wanted to turn and maintain Gs and [turn] rates, then I think a clean F-16 would certainly outperform a loaded F-35," Kloos says. "But if you compared them at combat loadings, the F-35 I think would probably outperform it."

The F-16, Kloos says, is a very capable aircraft in a within visual range engagement--especially in the lightly loaded air-to-air configuration used during training sorties at home station. "It's really good at performing in that kind of configuration," Kloos says. "But that's not a configuration that I've ever--I've been in a lot of different deployments--and those are the configurations I've never been in with weapons onboard."..."

Not much more at the JUMP!
RAN FAA A4G: http://tinyurl.com/ctfwb3t http://tinyurl.com/ccmlenr http://www.youtube.com/user/bengello/videos
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Unread post05 Jun 2012, 02:03

First F-35B local area flight at Eglin AFB

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl ... OL4XccGpNo

"Published on Jun 4, 2012 by LockheedMartinVideos
An F-35B short takeoff/vertical landing (STOVL) variant took off from Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., for the first time on May 22, 2012. The flight marked the beginning of F-35B local area operations at Eglin, where the STOVL variant joined the F-35A for joint pilot and maintainer training earlier this year."
RAN FAA A4G: http://tinyurl.com/ctfwb3t http://tinyurl.com/ccmlenr http://www.youtube.com/user/bengello/videos
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Unread post05 Jun 2012, 12:38

spazsinbad wrote:Some MORE Kloos:

Eglin F-35 initial cadre starts transition training By Dave Majumdar on May 24, 2012

http://www.flightglobal.com/blogs/the-d ... start.html

"...33rd FW is working on getting its first non-test pilot checked out on the F-35. Lt Col Lee Kloos, the commander of the 58th Fighter Squadron, should be finished his six-ride transition course in the next week or two.

The veteran F-16 operational tester and Weapons School grad shared some of his impressions the F-35. The jet is powerful, stable and easy to fly.

"One of the things this aircraft usually takes hit on is the handling because it's not an F-22," Kloos says. "An F-22 is unique in its ability to maneuver and we'll never be that."

But compared to other aircraft, a combat-configured F-35 probably edges out other existing designs carrying a similar load-out. "When I'm downrange in Badguyland that's the configuration I need to have confidence in maneuvering, and that's where I think the F-35 starts to edge out an aircraft like the F-16," Kloos says.

A combat-configured F-16 is encumbered with weapons, external fuel tanks, and electronic countermeasures pods that sap the jet's performance. "You put all that on, I'll take the F-35 as far as handling characteristic and performance, that's not to mention the tactical capabilities and advancements in stealth," he says. "It's of course way beyond what the F-16 has currently."

The F-35's acceleration is "very comparable" to a Block 50 F-16. "Again, if you cleaned off an F-16 and wanted to turn and maintain Gs and [turn] rates, then I think a clean F-16 would certainly outperform a loaded F-35," Kloos says. "But if you compared them at combat loadings, the F-35 I think would probably outperform it."

The F-16, Kloos says, is a very capable aircraft in a within visual range engagement--especially in the lightly loaded air-to-air configuration used during training sorties at home station. "It's really good at performing in that kind of configuration," Kloos says. "But that's not a configuration that I've ever--I've been in a lot of different deployments--and those are the configurations I've never been in with weapons onboard."..."

Not much more at the JUMP!


Again, we hear reports that the -16's in clean configuration out performs the -35 in accelleration. But is that all the way from wheels up through Vmax, until the turbofan just won't push through any faster, or is a clean -16 faster than the -35 up through a vertain airspeed at which the -35's massive thrust overcomes the drag by having a bulkier airframe? Is this a F-35 with full internal fuel, which is quite a bit more than a clean -16s fuel load? Or is a clean -16 just plain better in all conditions with regards to accelleration and dry thrust Vmax?

Is the -22's maneuverability better because of thrust vectoring? Are they refering to a -22 being more maneuverable at supersonic speeds only? Seems like the -35 could in future variants have thrust vectoring.... The -35B has purpose built thrust vectoring nozzle not meant to improve maneuverability, so a future AF/USN variant could incorporate TV if its even deemed a requirement to match the PakFa and J-20 (if they ever make it into production).

But enough od comparing clean -16s to -35s. What I want to know is how does the -35 compare to the Flanker and Fulcrum. Any of you "active" guys have a knowledagble say on this matter?
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Unread post05 Jun 2012, 19:29

Rat,
I've never flown (or flown against) a Flanker or Fulcrum and I haven't flown the F-35, so I can't really say. I'd say the comparisons to the Viper are probably pretty close to the comparisons to the FSU jets...if anything a bit more in the F-35's favor. Again, that's my best guess. I guess we'll find out one day!
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Unread post06 Jun 2012, 03:04

sewerrat wrote:

Again, we hear reports that the -16's in clean configuration out performs the -35 in accelleration. But is that all the way from wheels up through Vmax, until the turbofan just won't push through any faster, or is a clean -16 faster than the -35 up through a vertain airspeed at which the -35's massive thrust overcomes the drag by having a bulkier airframe? Is this a F-35 with full internal fuel, which is quite a bit more than a clean -16s fuel load? Or is a clean -16 just plain better in all conditions with regards to accelleration and dry thrust Vmax?

But enough od comparing clean -16s to -35s. What I want to know is how does the -35 compare to the Flanker and Fulcrum. Any of you "active" guys have a knowledagble say on this matter?


They are saying continually that "clean" Block 50 F-16's have greater acceleration than combat loaded F-35's.

I don't think that's such a great surprise to anyone. The Flanker is no doubt similar.

When the F-16 or the Flanker carries the same combat load that the F-35 is carrying though, I suspect the F-35 comes into it's own, as intended by design.

Once again, if you compare apples with oranges you get a flawed (and meaningless) result...
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Unread post06 Jun 2012, 07:35

Conan wrote:
sewerrat wrote:

Again, we hear reports that the -16's in clean configuration out performs the -35 in accelleration. But is that all the way from wheels up through Vmax, until the turbofan just won't push through any faster, or is a clean -16 faster than the -35 up through a vertain airspeed at which the -35's massive thrust overcomes the drag by having a bulkier airframe? Is this a F-35 with full internal fuel, which is quite a bit more than a clean -16s fuel load? Or is a clean -16 just plain better in all conditions with regards to accelleration and dry thrust Vmax?

But enough od comparing clean -16s to -35s. What I want to know is how does the -35 compare to the Flanker and Fulcrum. Any of you "active" guys have a knowledagble say on this matter?


They are saying continually that "clean" Block 50 F-16's have greater acceleration than combat loaded F-35's.

I don't think that's such a great surprise to anyone. The Flanker is no doubt similar.

When the F-16 or the Flanker carries the same combat load that the F-35 is carrying though, I suspect the F-35 comes into it's own, as intended by design.

Once again, if you compare apples with oranges you get a flawed (and meaningless) result...


Oh yeah. I know they're talking about the stipped down airshow (Thunderbirds vonfiguration) -16. But, what about the Flanker and Fulcrum whwn they are loaded out with a normal compliment of AAMs. Frankly I'm growing weary of comparisons of the -35 versus clean, unarmed -16. A clean -16 is a mightly slippery loking aircraft..... There's no way to build something akin to a clean -16 and also be stealthy and have an internal capavity for 6 aams or 2 x2k lb bombs plus enugh internal fuel to do away wth some external fuel storage.

Unless we go to war with Poland or Israel, I don't think we're going to -16 versus -35 scenarios.
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Unread post06 Jun 2012, 18:16

Conan/Rat,
I think most folks are making an apples-to-apples comparison, they're just making the wrong one. Most folks that I hear talking, compare the jets clean v. clean. That's a valid apples-to-apples comparison. However, in that case, the F-35 camp (and I think most do a good job of this) must alibi right up front that a clean F-35, if fully fueled, will NOT be able to hang with a clean Block 50/52 or Big Mouth Block 30. It does have a massive engine, but not when compared to how heavy the jet is, even with no weapons. It has a tremendous internal fuel volume...an asset to be sure, but it hurts the jet in this clean-v-clean comparison. With full internal fuel and no stores, it still does not have a 1:1. 50/52/BM 30 are all well over a 1:1. Induced drag is induced drag, regardless of type, and a jet with more thrust relative to its weight can sustain its energy better (i.e. out perform) a jet with less thrust. Also, the F-35 always has its increased frontal area, carry stores or not, due to the weapons bays. This is deliberate, but it again hurts the jet in a clean-v-clean comparison. So, clean-v-clean is a valid comparison, that the F-35 loses in most cases, it just isn't a very relevant comparison.

However, as LtCol Kloos alluded to, a more RELEVANT comparison is loaded v. loaded. The Viper now begins to gain weight for fuel and stores. The F-35 gains weight for stores only...it already had all of its fuel. The real killer for the hot rods is the drag. Drag will increase by a factor of many for the Viper and (aside from some induced drag due to the higher weight) not at all for the F-35. Now, like Lt Col Kloos said above, the jets are very comparable, performance wise, and the F-35 brings better sensors and surviveability to the fight. I know that this is repetition of basic performance talk that has been repeated hundreds of times on here.

I think the problem lies with the select few on this (and other) forums who insist on touting the F-35's benefits against legacy jets in ALL flight regimes and configurations. I'd have to dig to provide quotes, but I know I've posted in response to folks in the past that have argued that the F-35 with 2x 2000lb bombs could hang with a clean Block 50. I think some guys...dare I say fan boys...look at the jet and the massive engine and the sleek shape and think "that has just got to be better than anything else out there...at EVERYTHING". That's the issue...because it just isn't true...drag is drag, thrust is thrust...regardless of type. And the quotes from test pilots that it accelerates faster than the Viper are true...but that's referring to straight line or low-g acceleration. The F-105 and the F-111 accelerated like a raped-ape in a straight line, but their turn performance was terrible. Simplistic comparison, but you get the point. Thrust to weight really becomes a factor (in my experience) as the g is increased and the motor can no-longer compensate for the increased induced drag...now you have energy bleed. The F-35 was designed for combat and is optimized for comparison with other types in a COMBAT configuration. In that case, it stacks up very well. But the fan boys on here must stop touting the F-35's "massive engine" and "faster than Viper acceleration" because that is precisely what drives other folks to start doing these clean-v-clean comparisons.
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Unread post06 Jun 2012, 18:38

sewerrat wrote:
Conan wrote:
sewerrat wrote:

Again, we hear reports that the -16's in clean configuration out performs the -35 in accelleration. But is that all the way from wheels up through Vmax, until the turbofan just won't push through any faster, or is a clean -16 faster than the -35 up through a vertain airspeed at which the -35's massive thrust overcomes the drag by having a bulkier airframe? Is this a F-35 with full internal fuel, which is quite a bit more than a clean -16s fuel load? Or is a clean -16 just plain better in all conditions with regards to accelleration and dry thrust Vmax?

But enough od comparing clean -16s to -35s. What I want to know is how does the -35 compare to the Flanker and Fulcrum. Any of you "active" guys have a knowledagble say on this matter?


They are saying continually that "clean" Block 50 F-16's have greater acceleration than combat loaded F-35's.

I don't think that's such a great surprise to anyone. The Flanker is no doubt similar.

When the F-16 or the Flanker carries the same combat load that the F-35 is carrying though, I suspect the F-35 comes into it's own, as intended by design.

Once again, if you compare apples with oranges you get a flawed (and meaningless) result...


Oh yeah. I know they're talking about the stipped down airshow (Thunderbirds vonfiguration) -16. But, what about the Flanker and Fulcrum whwn they are loaded out with a normal compliment of AAMs. Frankly I'm growing weary of comparisons of the -35 versus clean, unarmed -16. A clean -16 is a mightly slippery loking aircraft..... There's no way to build something akin to a clean -16 and also be stealthy and have an internal capavity for 6 aams or 2 x2k lb bombs plus enugh internal fuel to do away wth some external fuel storage.

Unless we go to war with Poland or Israel, I don't think we're going to -16 versus -35 scenarios.


I'd imagine the flankers and fulcrums will have their own problems with drag in a similar manner to the F-14 that I described some time ago based on the fact that they all use a 3-body airframe design as opposed to the single body fuselage design that the F-35, F-22, F-15, and F-16 all use.
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Unread post07 Jun 2012, 01:06

twintwinsingle wrote:...The F-35 was designed for combat and is optimized for comparison with other types in a COMBAT configuration.

Which in reality, hardly ever matters and the whole concept (all in one), still suffers from some serious flight performance issues, when engaging a fighter with jettisonable stores (modular design), or a missile.
I'd assume everyone would agree, it's way better to suffer a mission kill than an actual kill.

But then again, this has been argued million times over by now and I don't think there's much point in insisting on this...valiant attempt, though.
Cheers, Cola
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Unread post07 Jun 2012, 03:59

cola wrote:
twintwinsingle wrote:...The F-35 was designed for combat and is optimized for comparison with other types in a COMBAT configuration.

Which in reality, hardly ever matters...

I have to say, you lost me right there. What in the world do you mean by that?
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