Thursday, February 23, 2012

Assorted news; 23 february 2012

For the first time, a british pilot flew an F35C. The honor went to Squadron Leader Jim Schofield, Royal Air Force.
SNAFU has the video, enjoy. 

F35 starts to fly with weapons, internally and externally carried.

No weapons delivery yet, but flying has started with 2 AMRAAM missiles and 2 2000 pounds bombs carried internally and with the six external wing pylons installed and used to carry weaponry.
Defense News reports.

The F35 program has been confirmed once more, but the bad news is that a further US slow-down in acquisition in the next years is possible. Reducing numbers further will inexorably start to affect the unit cost in a bad way. It might or might not happen: the Pentagon will probably do its best to avoid further delays.

The cost of the F35

The cost of the F35 is still a mystery, but we now know that Japan is buying 42 F35A, and for them it has been promised a unitary cost of 112 USD millions, rising to around 125 millions when spares are included. That is on par with USAF FY2013 projections of an average cost of 120 millions per each F35A.
Japan has already made clear that if the promises are not respected, they will cancel their order.

The F35C is, of course, a bit more expensive than an A, and the B variant is even more expensive (the sole engine plant costing at least twice than that on non STOVL variants).
A 150 USD million cost for an F35C is not sci-fi. At current exchange rates, that would mean some 96 million pounds per airplane.
The UK hopes to stay between 90 and 100 million pounds in terms of unitary cost.

General Dynamics places further subcontracts for FRES SV

Defpro reports on this further contract assigned. General Dynamics has chosen BARCO to deliver the triple 8' head display for the FRES SV driver position. BARCO had already won another contract to deliver larger 13' displays for the crew positions in the turret.
BARCO will also supply the Video Processing Unit.

A small site on FRES SV is available from General Dynamics. It doesn't say much, but the Scout description offers some interesting details. It is worth a look into. 

1 comment:

  1. Hi Gabriele,
    Thanks for the updates.
    The news all seems good at the moment.
    I would like to hear an order for some MPA!


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