News: F-35 could explode if struck by lighting

http://www.businessinsider.com/the-f-35b-grounded-exploding-lightning-fuel-tank-2013-1

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/defence/9813125/Lightning-will-ground-F35-fighter-jet-known-as-the-Lightning-II.html

Some bad news for F-35 programme: in addition to performance shortfalls, cost overruns and huge vulnerability to even small-calibre weapons due to the fuel tank design, F-35 is also in danger of weather. Namely, lightning.

It seems that, due to the deficient fuel tank design, F-35s natural namesake is very dangerous for the jet. If F-35 is struck by lightning, it could ignite the fuel

It is not only problem with lighting. Reductions in safety measures, done to save weight, have also left jet vulnerable to even small arms fire. For one, its fuel is kept all around the engine. Second, it is not self-sealing.

Another problem with fuel tank prevens it from rapidly reducing altitude.

More shortfaillings that articles didn’t mention include reduced level of radar stealth, as well as very large IR signature. Vaunted 360*360 vision helmet had problems with lag, though it could have been fixed,

Apparently, Lockheed Martin fails to understand difference between war and video games. Warfighting weapons should have minimum of electronics necessary: anything above that just means less reliability, and harms performance in required areas.

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7 replies

  1. You forget one little thing:bouth the F-16 and the A-10 also had development problems…they eaven had crashed prototypes…the engines on the A-10 stopped whem the cannon fires because of gas intake…it seems a big problem for a cannon fighter…but it got solved,just like the problems on the F-35 will be.

    • I am aware of that, but F-35 is far more problematic case. First, it is far more complex. Second, it is in such situation that, if you try to improve its performance in one area, you’ll reduce it in another. As I have mentioned, it is so overweight that most fire protection measures have been removed and further weight cuts may be necessary; engine is also literally surrounded by fuel; wings are too small to offer adequate turning capability; there is lack of thrust. These problems can only be solved by redesigning the aircraft. Or better yet, designing a new one. But F-35 is a ground attack aircraft, that’s why is there lack of wing and thrust; but flammability will be a major problem exactly in ground attack missions.

  2. I also blaim LM for taking shortcuts in deveploping the JSF…in some areas its just absurd the stuff they do…but i belive that these problems will be solved in 2013…if not ,them the US armed forces need to take a secound look at the program…

    • I doubt that F-35s air-to-air capability can ever reach levels of F-22, PAK FA, Sukhoi variants or European 4,5th gen aircraft. F-35 simply is not designed for air combat. But its air-to-ground capability could improve.

  3. The only reason this project is alive is that they’ve burned too much money in it already.
    I’d rather have 2 F-16 E or 3 F-16C than this. It wont survive in the air against any of the Eurocanards or Russian jets namely Su-35S/BM and Pak Fa.

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