Reports of F-35B Crash/Pilot Ejection MCAS Beaufort

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hythelday

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Unread post12 Oct 2018, 10:10

Navy's "Commander, Joint Strike Fighter Wing" posted this on FB recently:

Cleared F-35Cs are taking to the skies in Lemoore.

Commander Joint Strike Fighter Wing continues to conduct a fleet-wide inspection of F-35C aircraft, continuously balancing safety and operational requirements. Aircraft assigned to CJSFW squadrons, executing a flight schedule today, are using aircraft that have completed and passed the inspection. Safety is the top priority, and we will continue to take every measure to ensure safe operations while we continue to execute our mission.


https://www.facebook.com/flynavyjsf/vid ... 627273799/

Also Heritage Flight Team (that would As) is flying:
https://twitter.com/thef35/status/1050464825309126657


USS Essex and VMFA-211 are in Persian Gulf as of today, but not confirmed to have resumed flight operations, yet.
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Unread post12 Oct 2018, 12:50

gtg947h wrote:
lamoey wrote:Back in my F-16 days we had to check each plane for specific serial numbers, if a TCTO came out saying parts with certain serial numbers had to be replaced. I am assuming they now can tell from ALIS what plane has what serial numbers installed. If they have found a substandard batch, it should be easy to limit the grounding, but since they have to inspect every aircraft they must still be working to identify if a certain production batch is to blame.


I doubt that fuel lines are serialized parts...


Depends on where in the fuel line there was a mishap
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Unread post12 Oct 2018, 14:49

Why I insist on calling AVIATION weak Aviation Week AVweak:
Fuel Tube Defect Grounds F-35 Fleet
11 Oct 2018 Lee Hudson

"...The only previous F-35B hull loss occurred at Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort in 2016. The pilot landed safety, but the damage from a fire caused by a faulty bracket that nicked electrical wires near hydraulic lines forced the Marines to strike the aircraft from its inventory. Another F-35A operated by the U.S. Air Force was too damaged to repair after landing with an engine fire at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida in June 2014. That incident was caused by a integrally bladed rotor in the Pratt & Whitney F135 engine that rubbed deeply against the fan case...."
&
"...Meanwhile, F-35Bs assigned to the VX-23 flight test squadron are performing integration testing with the Royal Navy’s HMS Queen Elizabeth II aircraft carrier off the U.S. East Coast. The first landing occurred two weeks ago—only two days before the unrelated crash in South Carolina. That event marked the start of an eight-week series of flight tests before the newly commissioned aircraft carrier returned to the UK...." [reporter or editor is ASLEEP/drunk prolly]
OR
"... the F-35B can take off within 800 ft...." [KPP for STO flat deck is 600 feet IIRC - so sort of NOT accurate eh]

Source: http://aviationweek.com/defense/fuel-tu ... f-35-fleet
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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jetblast16

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Unread post12 Oct 2018, 16:40

You would not want the check engine light to come on in a hover :mrgreen:

The Marine F-35B crash--engine fuel starved?
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Unread post12 Oct 2018, 17:12

Pure speculation eh. However if there is a problem in STOVL Mode Four the F-35B pilot is ejected automatically with no pilot input. Aircraft CLAW decides and within 0.5 seconds he is OUT. Is the crash site near a STOVL landing site? Dunno.
RAN FAA A4G Skyhawk 1970s: https://www.faaaa.asn.au/spazsinbad-a4g/ AND https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwqC_s6gcCVvG7NOge3qfAQ/
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steve2267

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Unread post12 Oct 2018, 22:54

spazsinbad wrote:Pure speculation eh. However if there is a problem in STOVL Mode Four the F-35B pilot is ejected automatically with no pilot input. Aircraft CLAW decides and within 0.5 seconds he is OUT. Is the crash site near a STOVL landing site? Dunno.


See graphic I posted a little while back -- a screen cut-and-paste from Google Earth. "Crash site" was about 5 miles from MCAS Beaufort. Could the Bee have been in Mode 4? I suppose that is possible. I dunno how close / far away the pilots push that magic STOVL MODE 4 button when approaching the base for a landing.
Take an F-16, stir in A-7, add dollop of F-117 & gob of F-22, sprinkle with AV-8B, stir well, then bake. Whaddya get? An F-35.
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Unread post13 Oct 2018, 00:01

Nearly a day after the Pentagon grounded all U.S. F-35s, the 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit and all three active Marine air wings are back to normal F-35 flight operations.

More at the jump

https://www.militarytimes.com/news/your ... ounding-2/
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Unread post13 Oct 2018, 00:20

steve2267 wrote:
spazsinbad wrote:Pure speculation eh. However if there is a problem in STOVL Mode Four the F-35B pilot is ejected automatically with no pilot input. Aircraft CLAW decides and within 0.5 seconds he is OUT. Is the crash site near a STOVL landing site? Dunno.


See graphic I posted a little while back -- a screen cut-and-paste from Google Earth. "Crash site" was about 5 miles from MCAS Beaufort. Could the Bee have been in Mode 4? I suppose that is possible. I dunno how close / far away the pilots push that magic STOVL MODE 4 button when approaching the base for a landing.

Until more details are known then there are many possibilities - likely some that neither of us can think of generally.

A story (where details matter). Ever since I joined NAS Nowra from flying training with the RAAF beginning of 1969 I heard the story of the successful night ejection in the circuit by a Sea Venom crew in strong gusty westerly wind condition which wreak havoc via severe turbulence in the circuit from surrounding tabletop/valley landscape to the west of the airfield including very severe turbulence when on finals for runway 26. When in 1969 night circuit height was 1000 feet AGL I thought it odd that the pilot hit trees when level turning downwind in the break. Not until recently reading an old publication referencing these details did I know that the Sea Venom was carrying out the night circuit at 400 feet! FARK!

There was no room for error in the terrain west of the airfield to downwind at this height. The pilot explained, after his return from survivor leave, lots of trees had been cut down around the airfield whilst night circuit height was raised to 1,000 feet AGL. The Venoms did day/night carrier circuits at 400 feet ASL (without an LSO) for 'security' reasons (plus being able to see the carrier when relatively close downwind). FARK! :-) So the story made sense once details known with supporting explanations about how the aircraft would behave when turning in turbulence relatively irrelevant.

In other words 'details matter' so imagining stuff - without detail - is really fruitless IMHO. I'm patient - I can wait....
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 post13 Oct 2018, 00:27

Salute!

The failure of one component after a few years of production is not unique to the Stubbie.

As production ramps up, more vendors contribute what are normally "minor" parts or assemblies or whatever. So that's why even many small things are tracked just in case there's a flaw embedded due to design or manufacturing problems or human factors.

The accident board experts go thru every piece of the plane they can find. If the fuel to the motor(s) is suspect, then you can bet that they will try to recounstruct the whole system from tank to the burner nozzles.

My only problem is the failure mode of the "tube". Does the thing simply rupture and you have no fuel to the rest of the motor? Is there a warning lite for low flow or another symptom?

Despite all the years of flying the test planes and such, you usually do not find the little problems until you have over a hundred planes flying hundreds of missions with normal folks flying them and maintaining them, Even tho the little part results in a crash, heh heh.

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Unread post13 Oct 2018, 00:54

Thanks 'Gums'. I'm not speculating here just providing information not seen here before? (see fuel warning light above).

VIA: http://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone/24 ... fuel-tubes TO: The Drive has uses when it provides facts....
Marine F-35B forced to land over fuel issue
04 May 2018 Shawn Snow

"An F-35B out the Marine Corps air station at Cherry Point, North Carolina, was forced to make an emergency landing on April 23 when the aircraft fuel light came on. Officials provided few details of the incident and referred to the event as a “precautionary” and “uneventful landing.”

The pilot landed his F-35B after “receiving a fuel-related warning light from the aircraft” and returned to Fleet Readiness Center East located aboard Cherry Point, John M. Olmstead, a spokesman for FRC East told Marine Corps Times in an emailed statement.

However, Marine Corps Times has learned the F-35 was leaking fuel when it landed, and the engine abruptly shut off before coming to a complete stop because the aircraft was out of fuel. The F-35B can carry nearly 14,000 pounds of fuel. The F-35B involved in the incident had “recently undergone airframe modifications,” Olmstead explained. [at FRC East]

“The specifics of the events that resulted post landing are the subject of an ongoing engineering investigation,” Olmstead told Marine Corps Times.

Source: https://www.marinecorpstimes.com/news/y ... uel-issue/
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 post13 Oct 2018, 05:03

Salute!

Good poop, Spaz.

I just wish to see what mal the "fuel" light indicates other than "low" fuel. Apparently that first incident was a close call.

In my flameout case, I had many bullet holes and fuel was being pumped out between the "sump" tank and the engine fuel control units by the boost pump setup in the A-37. It was a T-37 system So I ran out but had plenty altitude and was able to do a practice circle while descending over the field.

This thing could be something really simple like a pressure seal on the high side of a pump. I doubt it's a seam in the "tube" or an outright rupture.

Gums sends...
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Unread post15 Oct 2018, 12:09

spazsinbad wrote:Thanks 'Gums'. I'm not speculating here just providing information not seen here before? (see fuel warning light above).

VIA: http://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zone/24 ... fuel-tubes TO: The Drive has uses when it provides facts....
Marine F-35B forced to land over fuel issue
04 May 2018 Shawn Snow

"An F-35B out the Marine Corps air station at Cherry Point, North Carolina, was forced to make an emergency landing on April 23 when the aircraft fuel light came on. Officials provided few details of the incident and referred to the event as a “precautionary” and “uneventful landing.”

The pilot landed his F-35B after “receiving a fuel-related warning light from the aircraft” and returned to Fleet Readiness Center East located aboard Cherry Point, John M. Olmstead, a spokesman for FRC East told Marine Corps Times in an emailed statement.

However, Marine Corps Times has learned the F-35 was leaking fuel when it landed, and the engine abruptly shut off before coming to a complete stop because the aircraft was out of fuel. The F-35B can carry nearly 14,000 pounds of fuel. The F-35B involved in the incident had “recently undergone airframe modifications,” Olmstead explained. [at FRC East]

“The specifics of the events that resulted post landing are the subject of an ongoing engineering investigation,” Olmstead told Marine Corps Times.

Source: https://www.marinecorpstimes.com/news/y ... uel-issue/


Reminds me one of Rafale crash : young pilot emptied its fuel tanks, included external ones , misslanded several times, then asked for refuel, forgetting that once emptied, EFT qould remain open... Both pilot and MMI guilty
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Unread post15 Oct 2018, 18:18

Most F-35s return to flight operations after fuel tube problem
15 Oct 2018 Valerie Insinna

"WASHINGTON — After a fuel tube problem sidelined all operational F-35 aircraft last week, more than 80 percent of jets have been cleared to return to flight, the F-35 joint program office stated Monday. In a Oct. 15 statement, the JPO confirmed that all U.S. service and international partners have completed inspections of their F-35 inventories for faulty fuel tubes, and the aircraft that are not impacted by the bad tubes are back in flying status.

“The F-35 Joint Program Office continues to work closely with the military services to prioritize fuel tube replacements using the current spares inventory,” the JPO said. “Pratt & Whitney is rapidly procuring more parts to minimize the overall repair timeline for the remaining jets. Current inventory will restore about half of the impacted jets to flight operations [10%], and the remaining aircraft [10%] are expected to be cleared for flight over the coming weeks.”..."

Source: https://www.defensenews.com/air/2018/10 ... e-problem/
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 Oct 2018, 22:41

UK's F-35s given all-clear after US crash
16 Oct 2018

"The "vast majority" of Britain's F-35 fighter jets have been cleared to resume operations following a crash in the United States. The Ministry of Defence (MoD) ordered an inspection of its fleet after an F-35B came down in South Carolina on 28 September. A spokesman confirmed eight of the nine operational aircraft at RAF Marham in Norfolk were unaffected.

Five of the 16 aircraft need a replacement fuel tube. The MoD said most of those affected were test jets which are not operational and repairs will be carried out as soon as possible...."

Source: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-norfolk-45868818
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 Oct 2018, 23:47

spazsinbad wrote:
Most F-35s return to flight operations after fuel tube problem
15 Oct 2018 Valerie Insinna

... “Pratt & Whitney is rapidly procuring more parts to minimize the overall repair timeline for the remaining jets. Current inventory will restore about half of the impacted jets to flight operations [10%], and the remaining aircraft [10%] are expected to be cleared for flight over the coming weeks.”..."

Source: https://www.defensenews.com/air/2018/10 ... e-problem/


Thanks Spaz, I've been sitting on info for days wanting to scream "it was a (relatively) easy-to-replace engine fuel tube!" (which still may not be the root cause BTW). Sounds like Pratt is stepping right up to the problematic tube.

Just think. if it had been a twin engine jet the lot buys would have been twice as large doubling the number of problematic tubes and perhaps the number of fuel leaks. What kind of cascading power failures would have been experienced? (Power transfers can be a hard problem) And NOT to "troll" or anything like that but what was the number of F-22's that couldn't be flown out of Tyndall were there because of something needed for one engine? Just Asking. :devil:
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