Equipment of the US Marine corps for the first time replaced the F135 engine and the generator of the F-35B Lightning II on a ship, according to N+1 with reference to Defense Aerospace. Test to replace the power plant was held on Board amphibious assault ship “America”. First it was assumed that the military will not be able to do such things in the sea.
Until now it was thought that the military will face serious difficulties in transportation of spare engines for ships and their replacement in relatively close hangar under the flight deck. The fact that the dimensions of the power plant of the F-35B has turned out bigger than the usual rocket launchers used by the Marines carrier-based attack aircraft AV-8B Harrier II.
The F135 engine has a length of 5.6 meters and a maximum diameter of 1.2 meters. The mass of the power plant is 1.7 tons. This engine is capable of developing power up to 190 kN. For comparison, the length of the engine F402-RR-408 attack aircraft AV-8B is 3.5 meters, the greatest diameter of 1.2 meters and a weight of 1.8 tons. The engine can develop a thrust of up to 106 kN.
Initially, the military equipment was supposed to deliver spare power plant F-35B for amphibious assault ships and aircraft carriers will be partially disassembled. It does not exclude the possibility that during Assembly can be made serious mistakes.
Exactly how the technicians managed to replace major generator and engine of the F-35B aboard the amphibious assault ship, is not specified. U.S. marine corps argues that the procedure of maintenance and repair of new aircraft in the sea have been developed over the last two years.
The procedure of replacement of the power plant took less than a week, although in normal circumstances the replacement of a jet engine is not more than a day. According to the statement the Marine corps of the United States, such a long period was required because the change was made for the first time and techniques needed to record each completed action and enter information about them into the database.
Earlier it became known that the F-35B for the first time took part in a mock battle with the “enemy”. So the US Navy called the squadrons of combat aircraft, during a training exercise simulating the enemy. Thanks to this doctrine, the military was able to test the combat capabilities of the F-35B, the software of which contain eight serious errors.