After A Japanese Pilot Was Killed, The F-35 Stealth Jet Has Been Under A Microscope
A report recommends additional training and simulator time for pilots.
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November 14, 2019 - by Charlie Gao for nationalinterest.org
The fatal crash of a Japanese Air Self Defense Forces (JASDF) F-35A in April 2019 lead to much discussion about the future of the program.
Tons of speculation as to whether the crash was due to aircraft error, pilot error, or other factors occurred.
Now, fewer than two months later, the JASDF has released an official report as to the cause of the crash. The report provides a rough chronology of the crash, detailing the altitude and actions of the aircraft before the crash as well as providing a useful visualization of the aircraft's maneuvers.
The crash occurred during an air combat training exercise, following a controlled left descending turn.
The turn was initiated to gain space from another aircraft in the combat area, but halfway down the pilot radioed to "Knock it off," signaling an end to the training. Past that point, the descent rate increased until the crash.
At the time of the last "Knock it off" transmission, the pilot's voice was calm and not strained, and the aircraft didn't diverge
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