|The F-35 stealth fighter jet suffers from hundreds of problems and won’t be fully combat-capable before 2020, says a scathing report from the Pentagon’s top evaluator. New issues keep cropping up, and fixing them all may cost over $1 billion. |
Dr. Michael Gilmore’s damning assessment paints a grim picture of America’s much touted, futuristic Joint Strike Fighter. The program is 70 percent over initial cost estimates and years behind schedule.
|In addition to long running software trouble, the jet is plagued by structural problems. On the maintenance side, technicians are still required to physically connect the Portable Maintenance Aid (PMA) laptops to the aircraft in order to conduct almost all activities.|
The F-35 program office, Gilmore wrote, "has no plan to adequately fix and verify hundreds of these deficiencies using flight testing within its currently planned schedule and resources"