Joint Strike Fighter Aircraft

Defence written question – answered on 5th February 2013.

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Photo of Angus Robertson Angus Robertson Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Defence), Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Foreign and Commonwealth Office), Shadow SNP Westminster Group Leader

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what assessment he has made of the grounding of the F35-B aircraft due to improper crimping of the fueldraulic lines; and when the aircraft will resume testing.

Photo of Mark Francois Mark Francois The Minister of State, Ministry of Defence

The investigation into the fueldraulic fault on the F-35B has revealed a manufacturing quality control discrepancy. Out of tolerance units have been removed from aircraft and returned to the F-35 propulsion system prime contractor for replacement. Corrective actions to improve quality control processes and ensure part integrity have been instituted by the contractor.

Ground testing of the F-35B remains unaffected. The F-35 Joint Program Office, Naval Air Systems Command and the UK are developing a return to flight plan, which, once approved will inform when F-35B will return to flight.

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