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.
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.