On Tuesday, April 30th, Lockheed Martin will be hosting a "webinar" (Web Seminar) promoting the F-35 for Canada and will even be answering questions from us everyday Canadians interested in the JSF. Vice President Steve O'Bryan, and test pilot Billie Flynn will be on call to answer questions for a 30 minute Q and A session.
Information for this webinar can be found here: http://f-35.ca/2013/all-canadians-invited-to-webinar-on-the-f-35-lightning-ii/
You can sign up for this webinar here: http://event.on24.com/r.htm?e=606258&s=1&k=B3BDB1977DF28382A1A9B00FA24A693E
A new CF-35 brochure can be found here: http://f-35.ca/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/CF-35-Lightning-II.pdf
I have already registered, and I hope to be part of the conversation. I would encourage all of you to do so to. There are a lot of questions that need to be answered about the F-35 and how it pertains to Canada.
- What will be the total, ready-for-combat unit cost?
- What will the flying cost per hour be?
- What sort of cold weather testing has been done, if any?
- What is the state of planned external fuel tanks, and has any testing been done so far?
- Which Canadian bases, besides Cold Lake and Bagotville, will the CF-35 be able to operate from?
- Has the planned drag-chute system been engineered, finalized or tested yet?
- What can be done to integrate the F-35A with Canada's current aerial refueling capability?
- How well can the CF-35 perform in the intercept role? i.e.: Rate of climb, time to target, range, payload with a air-to-air weapons load.
- How well does the F-35 compare to the competition in the intercept role?
- Will it be capable of operations in the arctic, both from a weather perspective as well as communications?
- With cracks being found in the P&W F135 engine grounding the F-35 fleet, and the emergency landing of a F-35 in Lubbuck, Texas, what assurances can be made about the F-35's safety, especially over Canada's north?
- Why does Canada need stealth?
- What are the benefits of the F-35 over a stealthy UCAV (X-47, Predator C Avenger) for the strike role?
- What are the benefits, besides stealth, of the F-35 over aircraft like the Typhoon and Gripen in the air-to-air role?
- How well does the F-35's stealth features hold up over time and use?
- When will the CF-35 be ready for Canadian deliveries and operational use? No, storage in an American hanger does not count.
- Where will Canadian CF-35 pilots perform their flight training?
- Will Canada be able to modify, change, or improve the CF-35's software, hardware, or similar without consent of the U.S. or Lockheed Martin?
- Since Canada has already contributed to the JSF program, are we still entitled to bid on JSF contracts if we choose a different fighter aircraft? If no, WHY NOT?
- Will Canada be able to recuperate at least 100% of its F-35 costs in the form of economic offsets?
- Will the F-35 be participating in any Canadian air shows this summer season?
I'll probably come up with a few more questions between then and now. This will be Lockheed Martin's big chance to sell us on the F-35 Lightning II. I'm hoping this "webinar" will contain more substance than the usual marketing buzzwords. The big question is "Why is the F-35 the best choice for Canada?"
Anybody else got questions? Please comment!