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The F-35 integrated test force completed jet blast deflector (JBD) testing at the NAVAIR facility in Lakehurst, N.J. Aug. 13 with a round of two-aircraft testing.F-35C test aircraft CF-1 along with an F/A-18E tested a combined JBD cooling panel configuration to assess the integration of F-35s in aircraft carrier launch operations.
“We completed all of our JBD test points efficiently,” said Andrew Maack, government chief test engineer. “It was a great collaborative effort by all parties.”
The government and industry team completed tests that measured temperatures, pressures, sound levels, velocities, and other environmental data. The combined JBD model will enable carrier deck crews to operate all air wing aircraft, now including the F-35C, as operational tempo requires.
Future carrier suitability testing is scheduled throughout this year, including ongoing catapult testing and the start of arrestment testing in preparation for initial ship trials in 2013.
With this, the F-35C is another step closer to initial ship trials on an aircraft carrier at sea.
The F-35C carrier variant of the Joint Strike Fighter is distinct from the F-35A and F-35B variants with its larger wing surfaces and reinforced landing gear for catapult launch, slower landing approach speeds, and deck impacts associated with the demanding carrier take-off and landing environment.
Story and Photo: NAVAIR
Navy, News AH-1Z Super Cobra, ah-64d apache, F/A-18E/F, F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, Lockheed Martin, MH-60R Seahawk, U.S. Navy F/A-18E/F
Lockheed Martin has successfully completed a comprehensive series of tests to demonstrate the flight characteristics of the U.S. Navy’s F/A-18E/F while carrying the Joint Air-to-Ground Missile (JAGM). The flying qualities test series consisted of six flights from Patuxent River Naval Air Station, MD, between October 5 and November 2 with a total flying time of 11.2 hours.
The aircraft flew at altitudes ranging from 5,000 feet to 35,000 feet and at speeds approaching Mach 1.0. During each flight, the Super Hornet was refueled in the air by a support tanker to enable the aircraft to reach all the required speeds and altitudes at which JAGM had to be tested.
The JAGM test articles were six instrumented measurement vehicles (IMVs) equivalent in weight, size and dimensions to tactical JAGM rounds and outfitted with resistive temperature devices, acoustic sensors and accelerometers to measure the flight environments experienced by the launchers and the missiles.
Three IMVs were loaded onto each of two new Navy fixed-wing triple-rail launchers designed and manufactured by Lockheed Martin and Marvin Engineering to carry JAGM on the F/A-18E/F. Fully outfitted, the Super Hornet could be configured to carry 18 JAGMs, as opposed to just four of the Maverick air-to-ground missiles that JAGM will replace.
“The F/A-18E/F presents some of the most challenging environments for JAGM,” said Hady Mourad, JAGM program director at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control.
Threshold aviation platforms include the U.S. Army’s AH-64D Apache attack helicopter, the Army’s Extended Range Multi-Purpose (ERMP) Sky Warrior unmanned aerial system, the U.S. Marine Corps’ AH-1Z Super Cobra attack helicopter, the U.S. Navy’s MH-60R Seahawk armed reconnaissance helicopter and the Navy’s F/A-18E/F Super Hornet jet fighter.
The tri-service Joint Strike Fighter also is under consideration as an objective platform.
The initial operational capability of JAGM on the AH-64D, AH-1Z and F/A-18E/F is scheduled for 2016, and the IOC for the MH-60R and ERMP is 2017.
- Lockheed Martin -
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