Fatal flaws within the cockpit of the US military’s most expensive fighter jet ever are causing further problems with the Pentagon’s dubious F-35 program.
Just weeks after a fleet of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighters was grounded for reasons unrelated, a new report from the Pentagon warns that any pilot that boards the pricey aircraft places himself in danger without even going into combat.
In a leaked memo from the Defense Department’s director of the Operational Test and Evaluation Directorate to the vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Pentagon official prefaces a report on the F-35 by cautioning that even training missions cannot be safely performed on board the aircraft at this time.
“The training management system lags in development compared to the rest of the Integrated Training Center and does not yet have all planned functionality,” the report reads in part.
In other sections of the lengthy DoD analysis, Operational Test and Read more…
Definitely a “blue-water” long reach vessel. Plus they can service their nuke sub fleet in-between the twin hulls ( sight unseen ) or even launch amphibious opps from same.
It will be launched in half the time it takes the US at just one-third the cost (they don’t outsource their labor).
Add the new Chinese naval version stealth fighter bomber already in flight-testing to the mix and you have the makings of a formidable weapons system indeed.
Also look at that extra ”parking and readiness” station between both hull structures. And of course the launching and landing capabilities from the utilization of two flight decks at once.
Six of these vessels (two pacific, two Atlantic, one Read more…
The recent Japanese protest that Chinese warships recently locked their weapons-control radars on to a Japanese navy destroyer and a military helicopter in two separate incidents not far from the bitterly disputed Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea raises disturbing questions.
One is the extent to which effective civilian control is being exercised over the armed forces in China. If the military, or rogue ultra-nationalist officers, call the shots in a crisis that potentially involves not just Japan but also its ally, the United States, it could trigger a wider war that would destabilise the Asia-Pacific region.
After several days of silence, China’s Defence Ministry posted a denial on its website on Friday. It said that the radars on the frigates ”kept normal observation and were on alert”, but in neither case were fire-control radars used.
Japan rejected the account and said that it was considering releasing data that would prove the fire-control radar was directed at its destroyer.
Japan’s Defence Minister, Itsunori Onodera, had earlier warned China it may have violated Read more…
The decision comes as Washington struggles to find a way to avoid across-the-board automatic spending cuts set to strike the Pentagon and domestic programs next month.
Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has approved keeping just one carrier in the Persian Gulf region. The US has maintained two aircraft carrier groups in the Gulf for most of the last two years.
Panetta has been leading a campaign to replace the automatic cuts he warns would “hollow out” the military, and the Pentagon has been providing greater details on the cuts it would have to make if Congress fails to both replace them and agree on a 2013 defense budget bill. The carrier decision is one of the most significant announcements made thus far.
Plans for the USS Harry S Truman to deploy to the Gulf later this week have been Read more…
China’s new jumbo air freighter, the Y-20, prepares to take off from an unidentified airport for a test run on Jan. 26. (Photo: People’s Daily)
BEIJING — China said it successfully tested a heavy air force freighter that could be a mostly home-grown substitute for the older Russian planes it now uses while substantially boosting the Chinese military’s global reach.
The Y-20 flew took off from its development base near the northwestern city of Xi’an on Saturday, the China Daily and other newspapers reported on Monday. The plane can fly 44,000 km with 66 tons of freight, and is designed to fill the need for a stronger, long-range heavy lift capacity.
China now uses Russian IL-76 freighters, including for communications roles, but those planes were first built in Read more…
TOKYO—When a Japanese coast guard cutter spotted a small Chinese aircraft flying above disputed East China Sea islands in December, Japan’s air force scrambled eight F-15 fighter jets, but they reached the scene only after the intruder had left. Japan’s radar or surveillance planes had missed the low-flying aircraft entering what the nation considers its airspace, causing a delay in scrambling.
The embarrassing incident underscores the need for Japan to beef up the defense of air, sea and land in its southwest, said Gen. Shigeru Iwasaki, the top uniformed official of Japan’s military, known as the Self-Defense Forces. He said China’s navy and air force have been gradually shifting activities closer to the waters and skies near Japan’s southwestern islands and “establishing a tenacious presence” in what’s becoming an Read more…
They have designed a 400ft (122m) long “lighter-than-air” hybrid vehicle for the US Army, in a contract worth half a billion pounds. The LEMV, a first-of-its-kind airship, took to the sky on the 7th August 2012 at 6:49 p.m. Eastern Time and flew for more than 90 minutes over Lakehurst Naval Air Station.
* Operating at 20,000 feet (6,096 meters) above sea level
* With a 21-day on-station availability
* a 2,000 mile radius of action and is
* Runway independent
These hybrid airships have up to
* 40% Aerodynamic Lift
* 25% Vectored Thrust Lift
* 60% Buoyant Lift
Provides zero energy lift for long-endurance flight
Last year, Nextbigfuture covered a plan to buy around 45 new civilian hybrid air vehicles from this same company by a Canadian customer. These aircraft will be used across Read more…
Last week, General Sergei Karakayev, Commander of the Strategic Rocket Forces, announced plans for a new heavy intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) to go into production as soon as 2018. He emphasized that the new missile would be capable of penetrating the NATO missile shield Russia dislikes so much. The new delivery system will carry a five-ton payload into orbit, almost as much as its predecessor, the infamous R-36m/SS-18 ICBM known by its NATO designation, “Satan.” Like “Satan,” “the Son of Satan” will use highly poisonous liquid propellant.
This escalation comes after President Obama once again hailed his Russia policy. The Russian announcement delivers a blow to the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START), which limited U.S. and Russian warheads. An Obama Administration “reset” policy, New START traded real concessions to Moscow for promises of imaginary cooperation in arms control, in a Read more…
China’s navy appears on the verge of creating a new class of warship. It could eventually alter the balance of naval power in the region.
We are loyal followers of baseball philosopher Yogi Berra, who reportedly proclaimed that “it’s tough to make predictions, especially about the future.” Like the great Yogi, we seldom venture prophecies. But we did hazard one in The Diplomat late in 2010, namely that the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) would defy those Western experts who opined that Beijing had slowed or halted its naval buildup.
For evidence, such experts claimed that the PLAN had stopped building guided-missile destroyers, or DDGs. If so, Beijing had made a conscious choice to limit its navy’s offensive punch. Not so, said we. Having experimented with various DDG designs, the PLAN was simply settling on a model that incorporated the best of each test platform. And indeed, DDG serial production has recommenced in earnest, judging from pictures of the new Type 052D Luyang II-class DDG that have surfaced on the Internet.
Until recently it was fashionable for Western PLA-watchers to contend that Chinese shipyards had Read more…
The Department of Defense has confirmed foreign media reports that Russian troops are set to target terrorists on Americans soil as part of an unprecedented joint drill with the United States which will take place in Colorado next month.
As we reported yesterday, Airborne troops from Russia are set to take part in drills focused around targeting terrorists at Fort Carson between May 24 and May 31. The soldiers will also be mingling with the local community, attending a baseball game in Colorado Springs during their stay.
Although it marks the first time Russian troops will train on U.S. soil, soldiers from a plethora of different nations have been involved in similar drills for well over a decade.
“The Russian soldiers are here as invited guests of the U.S. government; this is part of a formal bilateral exchange program between the U.S. and Russia that seeks to develop transparency and promote defense reform,” Cmdr. Wendy L. Snyder, U.S. Defense Press Officer for policy, told The New American in an e-mail. “This is the first time that American and Russian special operations troops have Read more…