Naval Air Systems Command. “The question is about
Myers said the new aircraft entering naval service
are ”incredibly more capable, more lethal, more surviv-
able” than their predecessors, but are “challenging to
be able to afford to operate.
“If we desire to have the same kind of footprint, the
same force structure, then it’s going to be more expensive to operate if we don’t change the way that we operate,” he said.
Myers said the affordability issue drives discussions of
simulation and better ways of training so as not to consume so many flight hours, and how the Naval Aviation
Enterprise can team with industry to be more efficient.
“If you’re going to defund defense, then I
would be even more concerned if I were an
F- 35 person. There’s not enough money to do
what we need to do.”
U.S. Rep. Todd Akin, R-Mo.
Chairman of the House Armed Services seapower and pro-
jection forces subcommittee
On the potential impact of tighter budgets and rising costs on
the F- 35 Lightning II program.
National Journal, Sept. 8
“The question is, what is the balance moving forward in the carrier air wing? And
that’s going to be as much as a budget and
institutional decision as it will be about what
the UAVs bring to the table.”
Director of military analysis for the global intelligence
On the factors that likely will determine how much of a
presence unmanned aerial vehicles have in the fleet.
Navy Times, Sept. 11
“I’ll be the first to admit, we weren’t prepared to start spending this money and
supervising a project this big.”
Adm. Robert J. Papp Jr.
F- 35 ‘Doing Well’ in Testing,
Coast Guard commandant
On the Coast Guard’s 25-year, $24.2 billion moderniza-
tion effort, formerly known as Deepwater, that has been
plagued by management problems and cost overruns since
it began nearly a decade ago.
Associated Press, Aug. 21
But Cost Remains a Concern
Naval aviation flag officers say the F- 35 is faring well in
testing, but they raised concerns about the affordability
of the aircraft, which is designed to replace aging aircraft in the Navy, Marine Corps and Air Force fleets.
Answering questions from the audience Sept. 10 at
the 2011 Tailhook Association convention, Marine Lt.
Gen. Terry G. Robling, deputy commandant for avia-
tion, said, “Both the [F-35B vertical-takeoff-and-land-
ing variant for the Marine Corps and F-35C carrier
variant for the Navy] models are doing great. We found
fixes for [the technical problems]. Most of them will be
tested by the end of the year. We’re ahead in test
points. [The F-35B] is getting ready to go to the ship
The F-35B was to begin trials in October on the
amphibious assault ship USS Wasp. The F-35B was
placed “on probation” by then-Defense Secretary
Robert M. Gates in January and program officials were
given two years to address technical issues.
“What’s not doing so well is the cost,” Robling said.
“Because the [production] rates are so low, the costs
are very high. But, overall, in my view, the aircraft is
According to Architzel, F-35C testing against the
jet-blast deflectors of an aircraft carrier “has gone ex-
“We’re not quite as far along in the [F-35C] as we
are in the [F-35B], but the C is ahead of test points,”
Architzel said. “We have to get through this thing and
we will. There is no technical reason why we won’t.
The question comes down to affordability.”
Greenert Becomes CNO
After four years at the helm of the Navy, Chief of Naval
Operations (CNO) Adm. Gary Roughead retired Sept.
23. Adm. Jonathan Greenert, who previously served as
the service’s No. 2 officer, was sworn in as the 30th CNO.
Roughead leaves — and Greenert takes over — at a
critical time for the Navy, which will have to absorb its
share of the $350 billion in cuts to the Pentagon’s
budget already planned for the next decade.
During his confirmation hearing July 28 before the
Senate Armed Services Committee, Greenert said he
recognized that there will be “rough seas ahead”
because of budget pressures.
“If confirmed, my priorities will be to remain ready
to meet the current challenges today; to build a relevant
and capable future force; to continue to take care of our
Sailors, our civilians and their families; and institute a
manning strategy that recruits and nurtures a motivated, a relevant and a diverse future force,” he said.