Computer glitch prevents US’ most advanced F-35 fighter jet from firing until 2019 – report

Another day, another ‘glitch’.

 

Reuters / U.S. Air Force / Staff Sgt. Joely Santiago / Handout

 

The Pentagon’s fighter jet F-35 may not be fully operational until 2019 due to a newly discovered computer glitch. The $400 billion ultra-sophisticated jet, the most expensive in US history, was expected to enter service in 2015.

However, the most awaited plane’s main weapon will not be able to fire due to a computer glitch. The four-barreled rotary cannon for the Air Force version of the F-35 cannot function until new software is elaborated, despite jet scheduled to join the army this year.

“There will be no gun until [the Joint Strike Fighter’s Block] 3F [software], there is no software to support it now or for the next four-ish years,” an Air Force official affiliated with the F-35 program told the Daily Beast. “Block 3F is slated for release in 2019, but who knows how much that will slip?” Continue reading

Newest U.S. Stealth Fighter ‘10 Years Behind’ Older Jets

‘New’ plane, old parts.

 

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America’s $400 billion, top-of-the-line aircraft can’t see the battlefield all that well. Which means it’s actually worse than its predecessors at fighting today’s wars.

When the Pentagon’s nearly $400 billion F-35 Joint Strike Fighter finally enters service next year after nearly two decades in development, it won’t be able to support troops on the ground the way older planes can today. Its sensors won’t be able to see the battlefield as well; and what video the F-35 does capture, it won’t be able to transmit to infantrymen in real time.

Versions of the new single-engine stealth fighter are set to replace almost every type of fighter in the U.S. Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps inventory—including aircraft specifically designed to support ground troops like the A-10 Warthog. That will leave troops in a lurch when the F-35 eventually becomes the only game in town.

“The F-35 will, in my opinion, be 10 years behind legacy fighters when it achieves [initial operational capability],” said one Air Force official affiliated with the F-35 program. “When the F-35 achieves [initial operational capability], it will not have the weapons or sensor capability, with respect to the CAS [close air support] mission set, that legacy multi-role fighters had by the mid-2000s.”

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