Thursday, 11 December 2014

F-35 lemon files - they blow up if the petrol is too warm

Well maybe not blow up, but there was a fire recently where the lot of them got grounded. The problem has been discovered however. Petrol tanks get warm if they've been sitting in the sun for a bit, and the lemon F-35 doesn't like warm petrol. Apparently the answer is to paint the petrol truck white. Nice shining things really sort of visible to enemy raiders. Fuck me, unbelievable.....
Luke AFB is not the first base to run into this issue, with Edwards AFB discovering the problem and initiating the fuel truck repaint solution some time ago. The USAF has some hope that the reflective paint process can be applied to a similar green color as the standard issue refueling trucks used by the USAF. A test will soon occur with a white truck and a green truck, with both being painted with a special solar reflective coating, to see if the green truck plus the reflective coating will keep the F-35's life-force cool enough under the sun for the jet not to have to shut down immediately after start-up due to heating issues. 

What is most telling about this strange story is that the USAF thinks a long-term solution to the F-35's warm fuel problem is to park their fuel trucks under purpose-built shade structures. Yet isn't fixing the aircraft's low fuel temperature 'threshold' issue itself more of an honest, robust and logical solution? Like so many things F-35, maybe the operating margins are just too thin for an affordable aircraft-based fix to be plausible. more :s  

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