Joint Strike Fighte - Dutch Aviation MEDIA 2011

 JSF: Is there a life for Eurofighter, Gripen or Rafale in The Netherlands ????
Once these aircraft were seriously concidered as possible replacer for the F-16
Never before the purchase of a plane in The Netherlands caused so much controversy an the JSF
The Dutch Pilot and Aircraft ('Piloot en Vliegtuig') magazine reports :
5% of development cost being 800 million had to be contributed in advance.
A beauty she is, that's for sure !
This is a picture of the first test flights that were made.
Many people wondered, why not an off-the-shelf purchase of production equipment  such as proposed in Belgium ?
While this question and others circulate, the testing went on such as here a jet-blast test.
Concept was that with every single bought aircraft a discount could be settled.
Also bonuses were promished for sales to non-partners, and a lot of counter-orders.
A lot of problems occurred, technical such as recently (2012) with the STOVL version....
....and also political disagreement and cost overruns. 
The global economic crisis caused evaporating allocated budgets though....
Finally it looks like the complete project has become priceless for many participating countries.
So it will take some time before the F-35B will land on landing platform docks on assault carriers...
....or the JSF will land at Leeuwarden AFB, as it almost could be this very picture, which it isn't ...
Another question is if the JSF or 'F-35 Lightning II' can provide that what it was designed for in the first place ?
Cost of each single aircraft rose from 94,5 million US$ to 59,7 US$ in the mean time !
But F-16 (The Netherlands, Belgium) and for instance F-18 (other countries) have to be replaced in due time.
In between Lockheed Martin seems to think 'on with the program' , solutions will follow later on. Political matters.
Do read our article, and/or surf to the status report 2013 below. 
            Article in English 
            Artikel in het Nederlands
            ii  Go to stage report 2013 for more recent information
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