The first production model F-35B arrived in the 'hood last Sunday. BF-1 will begin the JSF's developmental test program in the next few weeks, including vertical takeoffs and landings. Meanwhile DoD reports show the program is behind schedule and over budget -- not a good place to be these days (just ask the F-22 or Presidential Helo guys). And adding to the bad press is a report from the UK Register that says both the V-22 and JSF have a problem with melting flight decks at sea. (Surprise . . . er, I mean, "No comment.")
So enjoy this happy snap. We're trying to get over to Pax to get some more before manned flight goes away altogether, which may be sooner than planned if the acquisition professionals don't get their acts together.
(Gouge - NC)