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F-35s grounded as precaution after crack found in engine blade
www.af.mil ^ | 2/22/2013 | Jim Garamone

Posted on 02/23/2013 9:19:06 AM PST by NYFreeper

2/22/2013 - WASHINGTON (AFNS) -- All F-35s have been grounded as a precaution after a routine engine inspection revealed a crack on an engine blade, Defense Department officials said Feb. 22 here.

(Excerpt) Read more at af.mil ...


TOPICS: Government
KEYWORDS: aerospace; f35; navair
This is a serious issue; however this is a problem that should be able to be solved. All new aircraft usually have problems like this. The nation needs this aircraft and I believe we have the right people working to get these F-35's on the front line.
1 posted on 02/23/2013 9:19:17 AM PST by NYFreeper
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To: NYFreeper
Just teething pains...


2 posted on 02/23/2013 9:21:09 AM PST by darkwing104 (Let's get dangerous)
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To: NYFreeper

Looks like the war on drugs is a total failure if someone got crack into an engine blade that easily.


3 posted on 02/23/2013 9:26:11 AM PST by Nonsense Unlimited
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To: NYFreeper
Periodic Maintenance always includes NDI of blades. Fractured fan bades are not unheard of even in mature engines. They find fatigue cracks and replace the blade, no biggie.

The people who work on these routinely know it is part of the package with any engine or weapons system.

Those who want to kill the program will get the most press and will paint these problems the darkes shade of black they can find. A willing MSM will only tell their side.

4 posted on 02/23/2013 9:31:58 AM PST by pfflier
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To: pfflier
Yep! Last nights expose sounded like a catastrophic fault had been discovered.
5 posted on 02/23/2013 9:46:42 AM PST by ANGGAPO (Layte Gulf Beach Club)
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To: pfflier
Fractured fan bades are not unheard of even in mature engines. They find fatigue cracks and replace the blade, no biggie.

Right. However, my main concern is that these engines probably have low hours on them. Finding a crack like this at this stage could be serious. I guess it depends on the severity of the crack.

6 posted on 02/23/2013 9:50:29 AM PST by NYFreeper
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To: NYFreeper
Low time cracks on turbine blades could point to a design flaw. However I'm betting it is a manufacturing defect of the individual blade.

In the good old days (J-79s) casting flaws usually inclusions. were the most common cause. The modern blades are now "grown" as single crystals and more immune to such flaws.

BTW Other causes of fractures were FOD impingement, improper installation and on very rare occasions, faulty materials or deficient design.

7 posted on 02/23/2013 10:22:35 AM PST by pfflier
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To: pfflier

Is China grounding their clones too? ;-)


8 posted on 02/23/2013 10:49:42 AM PST by Average Al
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To: NYFreeper

Some physical debris could also be the reason, and not be a design flaw in the blade itself.


9 posted on 02/23/2013 11:51:25 AM PST by Secret Agent Man (I can neither confirm or deny that; even if I could, I couldn't - it's classified.)
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To: NYFreeper

There is no testing like real world testing. The D, E, and F on the F-15 are the best aircraft. The F-35 is not there.


10 posted on 02/23/2013 11:55:17 AM PST by bmwcyle (People who do not study history are destine to believe really ignorant statements.)
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To: NYFreeper

We’re finding quite a few manufacturing flaws in design and implementation. Just installed 3 lift station pumps, replacing 3 older pumps with identical designed systems.

1st pump failed within a week with the impeller blade sheared completely off. Upon taking that pump out of service and staring the second pump, it also failed with the same symptom. We’re hoping the 3rd pump lasts until the other 2 are replaced.

Our entire society has shifted to a “buy it off the shelf and install it as a replacement” society. It’s difficult to find engineers who can pioneer and design from scratch. Unless it is a previously established design and codified, many engineers refuse to provide a design and many simply look dumbfounded when faced with problems.

We’ve started flying to the manufacturer’s factories to witness their testing procedures and are finding our turbines failing during their testing procedures, and the manufacturers at a loss to bring them into compliance. We fear not witnessing the tests as they will just rubber stamp their documents and send out defective product anyways.

We open up new turbines, compressors, generators, switchgear, to find loose wires hanging within cabinets and no clear and obvious points of connect.

Those of us who know how to troubleshoot and have built them from the bottom up are getting older and retiring. The newer generation is lost.


11 posted on 02/23/2013 12:08:26 PM PST by Cvengr (Adversity in life and death is inevitable. Thru faith in Christ, stress is optional.)
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To: darkwing104
"Just teething pains..."

Nope....this flying turd HAS no teeth.

In a military acquisition era that defies logic, this is undoubtedly the WORST program in history.

12 posted on 02/23/2013 3:20:02 PM PST by diogenes ghost
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To: diogenes ghost

“In a military acquisition era that defies logic, this is undoubtedly the WORST program in history. “

That’s over the top hyperbole, but I continue to maintain that the F-35 buy should be cut in favor of additional F-22 production.

With underwing hardpoints the F-22 could carry plenty of ordinance after the air defenses are suppressed. For that matter, build the B1-R. F-22 engines, Mach 1.5+ capability, and air-to-air with 20+ AMRAAMs. What’s not to like? :-)


13 posted on 02/23/2013 3:36:12 PM PST by PreciousLiberty
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To: PreciousLiberty
"That's over the top hyperbole...."

Oh, really?

There is simply NOTHING good to say about this POS.

Try building a vehicle that performs like a Ferrari, carries loads like a dump truck, handles like a go-cart, and climbs hills like a goat. Right.

This thing is overweight, under-range, under powered, several systems have never performed as designed (maybe never will), taking FAR too long to build, and wayyyyy over budget,

Seen anything you like yet?

The performance targets have been lowered FOUR times, and it still misses the mark. The Navy didn't want it (poor range, single engine), The AF only bit off because the Raptor was cut, the Marines wanted it, but are hurting because it is so late and ill performing.

Export customers are pissed off due to cost, delays, and lousy performance. Many have had to buy other fighters they had not planned on, in order to keep something flying. Many will cancel or cut orders drastically. The Netherlands ordered two in '08 after being assured it would be combat ready when delivered in March '13 - they have stated they will likely go directly into STORAGE, as they will be unusable.

Still like it?

14 posted on 02/23/2013 6:13:11 PM PST by diogenes ghost
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To: pfflier
Periodic Maintenance always includes NDI of blades. Fractured fan bades are not unheard of even in mature engines. They find fatigue cracks and replace the blade, no biggie.

It is a 'biggie' when the failure is at 400 fight hours and 700 total hours of engine time, which is why the entire fleet is being grounded.

15 posted on 02/23/2013 7:17:46 PM PST by Yo-Yo
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To: NYFreeper

Dang. Hate to see this as my top 3 jet engine manufactures are;

1: P&W
2: Rolls Royce
3: Anybody else
4: GE


16 posted on 02/23/2013 7:23:24 PM PST by Hillarys Gate Cult (Liberals make unrealistic demands on reality and reality doesn't oblige them.)
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To: PreciousLiberty
BS. The F-22 is as much as an air to ground bomber as the F-117 was an air to air fighter.
17 posted on 02/23/2013 7:27:47 PM PST by Hillarys Gate Cult (Liberals make unrealistic demands on reality and reality doesn't oblige them.)
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To: Yo-Yo
True, when you have one engine any problem becomes critical. One incident does not constitute a reason to panic though.

Let's wait for the failure analysis and corrective action before we dump the engine and brand the F-35 a failure..

This problem was detected during normal operations not due to catastrauphic failure. Also cracks in metals can be quantified in a wide spectrum of risks.

IF everybody quit after detecting turbine blade cracks, there would be no J-57, TF-33, J-75, J-79 or PW F-100s

FWIW in 2007, the USAF grounded and reinspect all F-16 engines in Korea because one airman threw a small frog into a running engine. Grounding is a precaution, not a last resort.

18 posted on 02/23/2013 8:26:12 PM PST by pfflier
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To: NYFreeper
Obama has a fix.. the Green Energy F-35:


19 posted on 02/24/2013 5:02:40 AM PST by maddog55 (America Rising.... Civil War II)
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To: pfflier
Let's wait for the failure analysis and corrective action before we dump the engine and brand the F-35 a failure..

You are aware that the F-35 test fleet were grounded in 2007 and 2008 when similar cracks were discovered in the same section of the engine?

20 posted on 02/24/2013 5:06:58 AM PST by Yo-Yo
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To: Yo-Yo
Yes I am also aware that was 5 years ago. Because of the time span between occurrences, I am not yet prepared to conclude they are the same issue.

I am willing to take congress to task for killing the alternate engine source given this history.

21 posted on 02/24/2013 8:22:07 AM PST by pfflier
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To: NYFreeper
The grounding was lifted today. F-35s are cleared to fly.

The funny thing is that I read it in a Australian aviation site

http://australianaviation.com.au/2013/03/f-35-grounding-lifted-2/

The listed cause of the turbine blade crack was :

"Prolonged exposure to high levels of heat and other operational stressors on this specific engine were determined to be the cause of the crack. No additional cracks were found during inspections of the remaining F-35 inventory.”

22 posted on 03/01/2013 10:32:19 AM PST by pfflier
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To: pfflier

Yes, I saw them flying today. Looks like this engine may have undergone some extreme tests at Edwards which caused the crack. Apparently this is not as serious as I first may have thought.


23 posted on 03/01/2013 4:07:13 PM PST by NYFreeper
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