back to article Dodgy software will bork America's F-35 fighters until at least 2019

The F-35 multirole fighter won't be close to ready before 2019, the US House Armed Services Committee was told on Wednesday. The aircraft, which is supposed to reinvigorate the American military's air power, is suffering numerous problems, largely down to flaws in the F-35's operating system. These include straightforward code …

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        1. Alistair Silver badge
          Windows

          Re: What's the problem?

          @KeithR

          I get the idea you're canadian military.

  1. Dagg
    Mushroom

    Sounds like it was developed using an Agile approach

    Agile start with a vague idea of what you want then just do it. Empower the team so that everyone is responsible for the failure. Wander thru the wilderness with no direction.

    Then when it craps out blame the developers because the requirements were crap, this is just like blaming the stokers in the engine room of the Titanic for crashing into the iceberg.

    1. Pascal Monett Silver badge
      Trollface

      But of course ! If they hadn't put so much coal in, the ship would have hit the iceberg gently and only been dented.

      From a manager's point of view, that is.

    2. fajensen Silver badge

      Re: Sounds like it was developed using an Agile approach

      And rightly so - If those slackers had been a-stoking properly as instructed by management, then the Titanic would have had enough momentum to jump right over that iceberg!

  2. Dr Scrum Master

    Ouch!

    How many Textron AirLand Scorpions could have been bought and be operational for the cost of the F35 programme?

    1. PlacidCasual

      Re: Ouch!

      Exactly.

      Given our mission these days seems to be bombing iron age villagers back to the stone age we should be investing in a large fleet of cheap to buy, cheap to fly and cheap to maintain planes. A smaller fleet of up to date interceptor and air to air craft are only required to win the air superiority battle and start bombing the modern foe back to the industrial revolution. By the time there are boots on the ground, the cheap to run fighters should be pulling the shifts.

      Why oh why we didn't build nuclear carriers with Catobar is beyond me, we could be flying highly competent and cheap F-18's now hired from the yanks.

      1. fajensen Silver badge

        Re: Ouch!

        What would happen if we didn't bomb random people? Not very much, I bet!

        With the F35 to backstop "investors" we could simulate bombing villagers and no-one - apart from the villagers - would actually notice.

      2. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Re: Ouch!

        >Why oh why we didn't build nuclear carriers

        We, or at least the companies building them, intend to make lots of profit from selling copies of the carriers to TPL3WD after we, the tax payers, have paid for all the design cost

        Making them nuke powered limits the range of tin-pot-little-3rd-world-dictators you can sell them to.

  3. JLV Silver badge
    Thumb Down

    Ditch it already

    Skip this generation and go to gen 6 jets. Selective acquisition of proven gen 4 airframes + better avionics and weapons should be able to hold the fort against China or Russia until 2025-2030, which is getting awfully close to F35 release. And remain amply sufficient against low tech opponents.

    Cut the Marines and their VTOL out.

    And whatever you do, write affordability into the reqs. While keeping a lookout for the possible rise of disruptive autonomous air combat drone capability.

    Won't happen. The US is committed to this massive $$$ black hole that sucks up funding of any alternatives and too many careers would be ruined by ditching it.

    1. Mark 65

      Re: Ditch it already

      Could this turkey be the straw that breaks the camel's back? The demise of US military might on the basis of a capability gap and a f*cking massive overdraft?

      1. DryBones

        Re: Ditch it already

        Wow. Just... wow. Sounds like they need to furlough everyone except the programmers and the ejection seat designers, and they need to be taken by the short hairs.

      2. Uncle Slacky Silver badge
        Black Helicopters

        Re: Ditch it already

        Arthur C. Clarke saw this coming:

        http://www.mayofamily.com/RLM/txt_Clarke_Superiority.html

    2. Gray
      Black Helicopters

      Re: Ditch it already

      What! Ya'll actually expected to see a combat aircraft? Please realize that this little wonder has already achieved a large part of its design goal. Design, parts-outsourcing, fabrication, assembly, testing, and revisioning have all been distributed throughout virtually every Congressional district in the U.S., thus fulfilling its mandated mission of providing bragging rights, election-year speechifying, and home-town American Legion chest-beating rights upon every said Elected Official. Not to speak of bounteous cost overruns and bodacious profits for each and every Defense Contractor standing loyally behind each man-jack of our Brave and Patriotic Elected Elite.

      Nowhere, I repeat NOWHERE in God's Own Green Earth was there ever expectations of economy, efficiency, efficacy, suitability for purpose, or eventual fame as a 22nd Century aerial fighting platform!

      That will have to wait for the next round of defense proposals!

      1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

        Re: Ditch it already @Gray ...... the Explosive Clock is Ticking

        Quite so, Gray, and that is why US debt is fast approaching $20 trillion [$20million million/$20,000,000,000,000] and will forever be rising and never paid off. And can you imagine the compounding interest being paid/charged to that loan, increasing the debt even further.

        But who virtually owns all the debt and physically provides the cash for spending in the insolvency and are they both the same or something completely different to wonder about. What beings keep Uncle Sam afloat and are they worldly wise and foolish to provide the means of nations' destruction and populations' oppression.

        It is cold comfort indeed, to realise that many administrations are equally trapped to pay to hidden from sight and mind forces, crippling astronomical ransoms which deliver rebellion and revolution ...... National Debt Clocks

        It and IT is an AI and NeuReal Great Gameplay and you are all being played and rendered by media as impotent fools. Although it may be the case that such was so in the past, and the present now is to deliver an altogether different future with 0day vulnerability exploitation of bankrupt SCADA Command and Control Systems providing the magic black markets and ammo for almighty novel weapons ...... virtual machines of destruction which can easily be reconfigured to mass construction whenever superior intelligence is available and used rather than accepting any default status quo sub-prime offering to witness it being abused and misused, which is surely the most recent of situations, is it not?

        1. Chris G Silver badge

          Re: Ditch it already @Gray ...... the Explosive Clock is Ticking

          @AMFM; "But who virtually owns all the debt and physically provides the cash for spending in the insolvency and are they both the same or something completely different to wonder about. What beings keep Uncle Sam afloat and are they worldly wise and foolish to provide the means of nations' destruction and populations' oppression?"

          Rothschilds?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Ditch it already @Gray ...... the Explosive Clock is Ticking

            "Rothschilds?"

            I'm assuming that wasn't anti-Semitism because you don't come over like that on your other posts. But the short answer is no, the Rothschilds aren't that rich. I believe that the real power on Wall Street these days is the Mormons - though they couldn't get their candidate elected President.

            1. Chris G Silver badge

              Re: Ditch it already @Gray ...... the Explosive Clock is Ticking

              The Rothschilds figure in many of the Illuminati type conspiracy theories as the financers of, well, just about everything bad that's related to New World Order Domination of the Planet stuff.

              Anti semetic? No. That would really upset some of my friends.

            2. Gray
              Windows

              Re: Ditch it already @Gray ...... the Explosive Clock is Ticking

              S'pose I could say, "Rothschilds... who?" but no, I've seen & shunned all those "they conspire" delusions. Nothin' to do with Jews, either. We leave that to the KKK in their mental boobyhatch confines.

              Nope, we've got our very own cabal of the one-tenth of one percent right here in the U.S. After all, when one single institution (JPMorgan Chase) can eat Mexico for lunch and pick its teeth with Puerto Rico and never stop to belch, the Rothschilds begin to look like has-beens. No, America's Defense Industry is one small glittering cog in the great Wheel of Finance that rules the US. We're just waiting for the Next Big Attack to justify Martial Law and an Emergency Ruling Council; properly apportioned into Security Districts. With proper Financial Controls in place to assure Efficient Budget Operations. Example: US Social Security Trust Funds privatized via Wall Street/JP Morgan Chase. Now there is a conspiracy theory, writ large!

        2. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken

          Re: Ditch it already @Gray ...... the Explosive Clock is Ticking

          Second or third wave of attack in a hot WWCW* will be wiping out the attacker's debts on the opposition's financial systems.

          *World Wide Cyber War. I did think of calling it WW3 or WW4, but it's time to come up with a new definition. BTW, IMO, looking at the sheer cost expenditure, the international banking crisis of 2008 and beyond arguably already was WW3.

          1. Gray
            Windows

            Re: Ditch it already @Gray ...... the Explosive Clock is Ticking

            The US debt has an interest payment of nearly half a TRILLION dollars a year. That would buy, oh, a few high schools, clinics, bridges, university scholarships ... but sadly, I digress.

            I rather think of the Great Debacle of 2008 as NOT the "Great Recession" but rather a players gamble that couldn't lose, as the Widows & Orphans Fund of America was collateral behind the scenes. When the gamble tanked, every citizen's home, job, retirement, and investment went in the sewer. At that point, J.P. Morgan Chase, Bank of America, etc. and Corporate America leaped into an age of prosperity unseen in any prior age. Wages=>frozen=>down. Real estate=>down=>foreclosed. Dollars-worth for pennies. Pensions=>frozen=>looted. It was the globe's most massive fire sale for those who had the money to buy=>seize freshly devalued properties. Huge tracts of American farms, ranches, housing developments, small businesses, etc. transferred overnight to those wealthy few who held the cash.

            The F-35 Flying Turd? 'tis a small thing, really. It's just part of the on-going corruption practiced massively in America. Anybody wonder why a US politician will spend Tens of Million$ to get a temporary job that pays Hundreds of Thousand$? Think about it.

          2. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

            AIReal Fab Fabless Game Changer in Deed, indeed

            Second or third wave of attack in a hot WWCW* will be wiping out the attacker's debts on the opposition's financial systems. .... allthecoolshortnamesweretaken

            That would be real smart, and have lots of enthusiastic support, allthecoolshortnamesweretaken. And IT would create a wholly New Orderly World Order with CHAOS [Clouds Hosting Advanced Operating Systems] unencumbered by Holy Orders too. New Virtualised Drivers for Ancient and Modern SCADA SysAdmins.

            And 'tis most probably a current APT ACT and AI Work in Progress which cannot be stopped, only driven, and that makes it and IT a terrifying subject and object of both desire and dread to more than just a few in the know, with a need to know.

            And Man, are they an Almighty Weapon of Phenomenal Resort ‽ .

            1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

              Re: AIReal Fab Fabless Game Changer in Deed, indeed

              And 'tis most probably a current APT ACT and AI Work in Progress which cannot be stopped, only driven, and that makes it and IT a terrifying subject and object of both desire and dread to more than just a few in the know, with a need to know.

              Hmmm? No sooner said than already apparently done and betatested? ……. https://cryptome.org/2016/03/usg-ir-hackers.pdf

    3. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

      Re: Ditch it already

      Just twist a few Arms at BAE and get an updated Harrier back into production. Avionics from the Typhoon would make the thing a lot simpler.

      Cancel the F-35. It was always a lemon.

      Ok, so I'm biased as I worked on the Harrier at Hawkers many years ago.

      1. x 7

        Re: Ditch it already

        "Just twist a few Arms at BAE and get an updated Harrier back into production. Avionics from the Typhoon would make the thing a lot simpler."

        the jigs and tools have gone, the factory has gone.......and more importantly, the design team has gone.

        The technology has been lost

        1. Vic

          Re: Ditch it already

          The technology has been lost

          You'd be amazed how quickly it could be re-found, if someone were serious.

          Certain aircraft[1] inspire loyalty in their pilots/crew/designers. Vulcan, for example, did. As did Harrier.

          The job would have been easier and cheaper if we hadn't gone about deliberately destroying our own capability, but I'm quite certain it would still be a possibility, if you could get a commitment from government.

          Vic.

          As I've probably mentioned a time or two, I'm involved with an aviation museum. We now have three Jaguars. Can't think why...

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Ditch it already

        Just twist a few Arms at BAE and get an updated Harrier back into production.

        Why? The balance of weapons load/range/ToT were poor, agility low other than a few specific uses (like VIFFing), airframe loss rate was astronomical, and you'd need a complete new airfame to carry modern avionics, not to mention a modern engine. By fast jet standards it was heavy, slow, under-powered, and has all the stealth characteristics of a London double deck bus.

        An ingenious piece of engineering without doubt, but even as the Sea Harrier it only existed because the Treasury wouldn't pony up for proper aircraft carriers. Sadly we're back in exactly the same situation again - except now in world where even irregular bad guys may be able to get sea skimming missiles, and you can't put your carrier within 70 miles of a potentially hostile coastline (and at least three times that if they have any formal military able to deploy even antiquated Eastern Bloc weapons), so that limited range on a S/VTOL carrier aircraft makes the whole concept pointless.

        1. KeithR

          Re: Ditch it already

          "Why?"

          It worked!

        2. This post has been deleted by its author

      3. KeithR

        Re: Ditch it already

        "Ok, so I'm biased as I worked on the Harrier at Hawkers many years ago."

        I've never worked on 'em but I'm biased in their favour because - y'know - they work, and all that...

      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Ditch it already

        "Just twist a few Arms at BAE and get an updated Harrier back into production. "

        Somewhere I thought I read that them pesky furriners who have "our" Harriers now have been asking for an engine systems update in the last couple of years. That's a laugh, we're talking a fifty year old engine design whose control systems were designed and built by a company that ceased to exist around a couple of decades ago and whose assets were transferred to a company which did nothing with them and which in the last couple of years has successfully been getting rid of any development and support people who would have any kind of clue what to do with something from that era.

        Some of the other important subsystems are probably only slightly younger.

        It would be nice though wouldn't it.

        1. x 7

          Re: Ditch it already

          "That's a laugh, we're talking a fifty year old engine design whose control systems were designed and built by a company that ceased to exist around a couple of decades ago and whose assets were transferred to a company which did nothing with them and which in the last couple of years has successfully been getting rid of any development and support people who would have any kind of clue what to do with something from that era."

          I think its fair to say that when Rolls Royce and Bristol Siddeley were forced into a shotgun marriage, the takeover was the wrong way round. Bristol's had better engineers, better designs and better manufacturing techniques. The one new engine RR had development - the RB211 - had been misengineered so badly it eventually bankrupted them - requiring assistance from Bristol to get the engine bearings working . Wheras Bristol had developed the Pegasus, the Olympus and several others in that same time frame. Yet Rolls Royce became the "parent" company and their incompetent management gained the whip hand. Bloody Wedgewood Benn and his "strategic industrial corporations"

    4. KeithR

      Re: Ditch it already

      "hold the fort against China or Russia"

      Oh sure - THEY'RE the ones we should be worrying about.

      It's precisely this shit that results in shit like the topic of this article...

      1. JLV Silver badge

        Re: Ditch it already

        >Oh sure - THEY'RE the ones we should be worrying about.

        Whether you like it or not, and whether it is useful or not in that role, the F35 is intended for real high intensity warfare against top tier opponents. One of its primary selling points being its stealth, which is absent in gen 4 fighters.

        The F35 is designed against China/Russia, no one else. In fact, I'd wager it's just China, Russia was probably presumed to be friendly/inoffensive in the near future when F35 was in initial design stages.

        Against our current insurgency/terrorists enemies, these planes are totally useless. They lack armor & survivability, fly much too fast (thus mistaking wedding celebrations for things to bomb), cost way too much, don't have the loiter duration needed and might not put up well with really dusty conditions a la Afghanistan.

        Until we hopefully sort out a peaceful transition to China being the superpower, it might be worthwhile to not lose track of a possible full-on war against a capable high tech opponent. The F35 was intended for that role. I am actually discounting Russia, they don't have the budgetary oomph to field enough 5th gen aircraft to be more than a nuisance. Much as Putin likes to be a nuisance.

        One drawback however is that a full-scale deployment of F35, especially at current cost trends, sends a clear message to China about Western containment intentions. After all, they are IMHO the only really credible reason for this not-yet-flying pig. Bit like the German High Fleet buildup pre-WWI doing its best to prod Britain into more confrontational policies towards Germany.

        So the more we bleed our budgets to pay for F35 that don't actually work, the more we signal China that they need to up-arm as well. I am rather hoping we'll all be singing kumbaya together in 30 years, not getting into a new Cold War with China (which unlike the USSR is already real economic power). But I am not misty-eyed about Chinese intentions either - their South China Sea territorial claims do not augur much good.

        It might be more prudent to develop the ability to field a 6th gen airplane on medium/short notice, rather than fielding it outright. Both to avoid triggering a new arms race and because right now we won't have any way to fund the replacement to the F35 if it is actually bought at scale. We might need that replacement because a) it doesn't work or b) the threat has changed - think lasers or air combat drones effecting a "battleship moment" against them.

        1. Vic

          Re: Ditch it already

          Whether you like it or not, and whether it is useful or not in that role, the F35 is intended for real high intensity warfare against top tier opponents.

          Until very recently, the airframe was limited to 4.5g. So it can *just about* out-fly a 1974 Piper Warrior.

          The Lightning II does Mach 1.6, with a service ceiling of 50,000ft

          The Lightnting *I* does Mach 2.0[1] with a service ceiling of 54,000ft[3].

          It is plain to see that the earlier aircraft is a better interceptor, unless stealth capability is paramount - in which case it could probably be retrofitted to the earlier aircraft.

          The reason I'm labouring the point about these two planes is that the Lightning II is now supposed to grace our skies in 2019, whereas the Lightning I flew in 1954 - well over 6 decades earlier.

          Now I grant you, the F-35 has a few advantages - its range is a little better, for example - but when compared the the cold-war jets, it's pretty crap in a direct comparison, let alone allowing for the improved technology of the intervening 60 years...

          Vic.

          [1] I have it on good authority[2] that the earlier Lightnings could not make Mach 2 because they ran out of fuel before they got there. But the Mark 6, with the fat belly pan, had much more fuel and could do it relatively easily.

          [2] Two of the instructors where I trained are former Lightning pilots. Neither will have a bad word spoken against that aircraft.

          [3] There is a tale of a Lightning intercepting a U2 at 88,000ft. This involved a ballistic ascent, but gives a clue as to just how incredible was this aircraft.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The Doves have taken over

    I'm wondering if this is really the modern version of Unilateral Disarmament. If the weapons don't work or they are as likely to kill your own people as they are your enemy, a serious war becomes an unlikely proposition.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The Doves have taken over

      "I'm wondering if this is really the modern version of Unilateral Disarmament. "

      Has anybody asked the Russians and the Chinese whether they intend to go down the same route?

    2. Yag

      Re: The Doves have taken over

      "Mutual detterence weapons", V2.0

  5. PaulAb

    RC fun!

    I expect to hear shortly that some child with a £20 2 channel radio control will take charge of one, obviously it will be the childs fault and I can see the NSA requiring his/her immediate arrest.

    Meanwhile the pilot who during his joystick antics, crashes the childs toy will be sued by the parents.

    And at the same moment the teccy at ACME Car computers whilst programming a Jeep via wifi finds the car suddenly attempts a straight line dash for lift off.

    I'm going to buy a chair and sit outside a military airport with my can of guinness and watch the fun.

    I feel a Hollywood blockbuster coming on - I'll call it 'Fast & Furious, Bomber command'

  6. Potemkine Silver badge

    You need to reboot your computer before starting a war. Do you want to reboot now?

    How many in this story filled their pockets with (a lot of) taxpayers money?

    It's weird to see there isn't enough money to fight homelessness, poverty, hunger, but there's plenty of it when it is about designing some new high-tech way to hurt and kill other human beings.

  7. Dr Patrick J R Harkin

    "158 of which are Category 1"

    "– classified as those that could cause death, severe injury, or severe illness."

    "Death." Check. Understand how bad software in a plane could do that.

    "Severe injury." Got that too.

    "Severe illness." Eh? Are we talking diabetes here? Rabies? Leukaemia? Just what sort of software is this?

    1. x 7

      Re: "158 of which are Category 1"

      ""Severe illness." Eh?"

      I THINK this is a reference to the unique nature of the helmet: its a kind of hybrid virtual reality device which integrates "real" vision with the inputs from cameras and other sensors dotted around the aircraft. For instance if the pilot looks "down" he can "see" right through the aircraft to the ground below.

      It must be bloody difficult perfecting that integration, and I can see that getting it wrong could have a disturbing effect on the pilots spatial coordination, vision and concentration. Imagine seasickness at high G and/or Mach1.5 with vision on the verge of hallucination

      1. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken

        Re: "158 of which are Category 1" / severe illness / helmet

        That helmet will be (much?) bigger* and heavier than a conventional helmet. Think "headbanging with an extra, say, 5 kg strapped to your skull" - doesn't sound that healthy. My motorcycle helmet weighs in at 1,350 g (according to the data sheet), and it's just a helmet without any extra gear. Formula 1 drivers have to do weight lifting exercises to strengthen their neck muscles. I don't know how many Gs you pull going through a hairpin at 200 km/h in a race car - certainly less than in a jet fighter. So that's a heavy strain on the neck even during, well, just flying around.

        And if you have to eject: I am given to understand that ejecting at high velocities is best avoided anyway - the air will hit you like a brick wall. Even without having parts of your body caught between the seat and the canopy and crushed, unpleasant at best. Now try this with a heavy helmet - you'll be lucky to walk away from that with just whiplash.

        *The displays will have to be mounted at some distance from the eyes, meaning real leverage for their weight. Call it 30 cm (horizontal) from display's centre of gravity to base of skull, 1,000 g for the display = ca. 3 Nm+* just to hold the thing while standing still on the runway.

        **Yes, I know. 9.81 m/s/s and all that. This is engineering, not physics. The square root of 50 is 7. Because 7*7=49, and 49 is basically 50, sort of. Yes, all the buildings I did the structural engineering for are still standing. Run along now and work on that fusion thing, there's a good chap.

        1. Vic

          Re: "158 of which are Category 1" / severe illness / helmet

          I am given to understand that ejecting at high velocities is best avoided anyway - the air will hit you like a brick wall

          If your best way of getting home today is to get out of your aircraft - the windrush as you exit is the least of your problems. Your drogue will deploy, and very soon, your speed relative to the airmass around you will be small enough as to make no difference.

          Even without having parts of your body caught between the seat and the canopy and crushed

          AFAIK, all in-service canopies[1] contain det cord to destroy the canopy before the seat arrives. But the seat should still take you through an unbroken canopy without injury...

          Vic.

          [1] We've got a couple of Canberras at the museum. The navigator's seat is behind the pilot, and it ejects through a section of the fuselage. I haven't yet worked out whether there are explosives on that panel, or whether the seat just throws the navigator through a chunk of aluminium...

          1. x 7

            Re: "158 of which are Category 1" / severe illness / helmet

            "We've got a couple of Canberras at the museum."

            ever looked where the nav seat on PR9 Canberra? In the nose. That must have been an interesting ejection.

            As for your Canberra - presumably a 3 or 4-seater? I didn't think the rear seat crew on those had ejection seats - wasn't their emergency exit via the landing gear hatch? So an accident on take off or landing was unsurvivable for them

            1. Vic

              Re: "158 of which are Category 1" / severe illness / helmet

              ever looked where the nav seat on PR9 Canberra? In the nose. That must have been an interesting ejection.

              I don't know the PR9; on the B2, that was the bomb aimer's position. It was originally supposed to be the targetting radar - but that wasn't ready in time, so they put a man in instead.

              As for your Canberra - presumably a 3 or 4-seater?

              We've got two - a D14[1], originally built as a B2 and then modified, and a T4. Both are three-seaters; the B2 has a bomber in the front, and the T4 has two pilot seats because it's a trainer. both aircraft have a rear seat for the navigator.

              I didn't think the rear seat crew on those had ejection seats - wasn't their emergency exit via the landing gear hatch?

              Nope. They have an ejection seat. The panel above them is clearly intended to come away, but I don't know exactly how...

              Vic.

              [1] That's according to Wikipedia. If you look at the image of what they claim to be a D14, it's WH876, which is one of ours now...

              1. x 7

                Re: "158 of which are Category 1" / severe illness / helmet

                Vic

                found this thread on PPRUNE which gives some details of the back seaters ejection seat - looks like they had to jettison the hatch with explosive bolts before ejecting

                http://www.pprune.org/aviation-history-nostalgia/465563-canberra-bomber.html

                as for WH876, that may be an oddball as it was used for ejection seat trials and may have a one-off fitment

                as for my thought about the Nav not having an ejection seat, apparently that was the case in the B(I)8 - in the nose again

          2. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken

            Re: "158 of which are Category 1" / severe illness / helmet

            @Vic

            "If your best way of getting home today is to get out of your aircraft..."

            I'd say the 'getting home today' bit would somewhat depend on where you land, though...

            Anyway, this here seems to be an interesting view on the subject of the problems of having to eject with a heavy helmet and how they plan to deal with it on the F-35: Aerospace America - Safer Ejection Seats (PDF).

            BTW - BDAC - Old Sarum Airfield Museum is now on my places-to-see list for my next visit to the UK*!

            *Should be this autumn, but this depends a bit on the outcome of my appointment at the dentist's next tuesday. Sort of sneezed out one of my teeth last week, might eat into the travel budget (no pun intended).

            1. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken

              Re: "158 of which are Category 1" / severe illness / helmet

              This is actually a very interesting topic.

              Emergency Medicine Journal - Injuries sustained by aircrew on ejecting from their aircraft - Case report by C A Read, J Pillay, Accident and Emergency Department, Lincoln County Hospital

              Abstract: This paper describes some of the injuries sustained by the aircrew who ejected from their aircraft after a mid-air collision, and discusses the types of injury that such patients may suffer.

            2. x 7

              Re: "158 of which are Category 1" / severe illness / helmet

              " Old Sarum Airfield Museum is now on my places-to-see list for my next visit to the UK*!"

              if you're interested in aircraft museums, Boscombe Down and Yeovilton are both an easy drive down the A303 from there

              1. Vic

                Re: "158 of which are Category 1" / severe illness / helmet

                if you're interested in aircraft museums, Boscombe Down and Yeovilton are both an easy drive down the A303 from there

                The Boscombe Down museum has moved to Old Sarum - it's still called the Boscombe Down Aviation Collection, but you no longer need to go onto a military airfield to see it :-)

                Yeovilton's a bit further, but worth the miles IMO...

                Vic.

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