Thursday, December 24, 2015

Fighter Jet Times - December 24, 2015

December 24, 2015

Canada's new Defense Minister is backing away from a Liberal Party campaign pledge that they would cancel Canada's participation in the F-35 program once in office, indicating instead that the F-35 had not been ruled out as a replacement for Canada's CF-18 fleet.

Lockheed Martin has announced that it has met its goal for delivering 45 F-35 fighters in 2015.

Dassault Aviation has begun assembly of the first of 24 Rafale fighters destined for Qatar.

In an attempt to steal the still-unsigned contract between the Indian government and Dassault, Saab has made an offer to assemble JAS-39 Gripen fighters in India in return for a contract to purchase the Swedish fighter.

Speculation on possible new defense deals surrounds the visit of India's Prime Minister to Moscow this week.  Additional Su-30 purchases are reportedly a distinct possibility, and HAL Chairman T Suvarna Raju has reported that interest in the joint Indo-Russian Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft (FGFA) - expected to be an evolution of Russia's T-50 stealth fighter now in flight test - is again growing.

An Indonesian T-50 Golden Eagle trainer crashed during an air show appearance this past week.  The aircraft is the trainer version of the South Korean built FA-50 fighter, which is also being promoted by Lockheed Martin as a contender for the US Air Force T-X trainer contract.

KAI and Lockheed Martin held a roll-out for their proposed version of the T-50 trainer, that is being offered to meet the USAF's T-X trainer competition.  The T-50 and FA-50 were developed with Lockheed Martin assistance for use by the Republic of Korea Air Force (RoKAF).

A Chinese naval aviation J-10 fighter crashed during a night training flight on December 17th.  The crew are reported to have ejected safely.  This would be the third J-10 aircraft to crash in the past three months.

Reports continue to circulate that Russian warplanes have been using Iranian air bases to launch attacks in Syria.

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