F-35 Customers, Competitors And Challenges
By Bill Sweetman, Amy Butler
Source: Aviation Week & Space Technology
Testing, “Concurrency Cost”: Customers, especially those buying early such as the U.S., U.K. and the Netherlands, are exposed to the financial risk of taking ownership of aircraft that will require retrofits to address issues found in flight or durability testing, which is not expected to wrap up until 2017. Additionally, F135 engine manufacturer Pratt & Whitney is conducting durability testing with particular attention to whether high-cycle fatigue could cause more cracking than predicted in the low-pressure turbine. This risk is prompting some customers to delay their purchases until the configuration is solid and fully tested, adding to the price of early deliveries (AW&ST Dec. 24, 2012, p. 39).
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