Software remains the greatest risk for programs from the F-35, said Sept. 17 during a speech at the conference of the Aerospace Force control applets F-35 Air Force Lt. Gen. Christopher Bogdan U.S. (Christopher Bogdan, pictured), reports AINonline September 27. The general also touched upon the difficulties of creation of pilot helmet HDMS (helmet-mounted display systems).
Development of one hundred percent complete block software Block 3F is very depending on the preparation of success in the development of Block 2B and Block 3I, said Bogdan. Block 2B is the «initial combat unit», which added to the learning function and control the use of air combat missiles AIM-120 laser-guided bombs GBU-12, also guided munitions GBU-32 Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM). Block 3I will represent the same software, but on the new microprocessor.
Block 2B software package had to be ready for flight testing in August, but due to delays it enters only in April 2014.
According to plans, the F-35B fighter with a set of Block 2B should be adopted by the U.S. Marine Corps in December 2015, in other words with a delay of 6 months. In his report Bogdan said about his own conviction that the Commission will receive the aircraft in the initial status of the alert to the scheduled date.
U.S. Air Force plans to adopt a F-35A Block 3F with complete by December 2016. Block 3F will allow to use the AIM-9X missiles and AGM-154 Joint Standoff Attack Weapon (JSOW), will provide the regime of the synthetic aperture radar, the expansion of the flight envelope. The Navy plans to adopt with the F-35C Block 3F in February 2019.
Development lasts 2 different samples helmet display system HMDS, which are conducted by companies VSI (Vision Systems International) and BAE Systems (2nd joined the development began after problems at VSI). After the tests must be selected one system. Bogdan said the company Lockheed Martin is drawn to the fact that the winner was elected helmet VSI, but warned that «no way for them to do that.» The fact that the VSI helmet worth 500 thousand dollars that 100-150 thousand dollars more than the helmet BAE. As the general said, he will seek and order to price the entire aircraft continued to drop on condition that its cost «has become comparable to the cost of a fighter fourth generation.»