What Occurs When a Stealth Jet Ends Up on the Ocean Ground?

WASHINGTON – On January 24, one of many United States Navy’s most costly fighters crashed when it tried to land on an plane service and sank to the underside of the South China Sea. The 94 million dollars The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is at the moment the topic of a salvage operation.

In statement On the day of the incident, the Navy stated seven sailors have been injured when the jet made a “flawed touchdown” aboard the Carl Vinson plane service. It doesn’t point out that the airplane ended up within the ocean.

The Navy has stated little publicly since then concerning the incident. In response to a query from The New York Occasions, the Navy’s seventh Fleet stated final week the service had “starting to mobilize models that shall be used to confirm the scene and recuperate” the F-35. concerning the accident.

Pictures and movies that seem to have been taken aboard the Vinson have been posted on social media. Officers in command of public affairs say that some pictures – resembling one of many F-35s on the ocean’s floor – are genuine. Cmdr stated: “There’s an ongoing investigation into each the accident and the unauthorized distribution of video footage on board. Zach Harrell, spokesman for the Naval Air Protection Drive.

It was solely after a Twitter consumer posted a video of the crash on February 6 that Navy officers acknowledged that the jet crashed into the again of the flight deck earlier than sliding the size of the ship and crashing. into the ocean.

Will the Navy recuperate its costly jet from the ocean flooring earlier than the enemy finds it? Here is what we all know up to now concerning the incident and what the salvage operation might face.

Brief reply: We do not know precisely. Nevertheless, we have now tantalizing clues from public statements.

On January 29, the Japan Coast Guard posted a discover informing sailors of ongoing salvage operations in an space within the northern a part of the South China Sea. The discover stated salvage operations at a selected latitude and longitude would proceed “till additional discover.”

The US Navy’s Japan-based seventh Fleet referred questions concerning the discover to the Japan Coast Guard, which final week stated the US Nationwide Geospatial Intelligence Service had requested Put up warning. An company spokesman, beneath the Division of Protection, directed inquiries about that discover to the Navy.

The announcement places the salvage website about 13,000 toes beneath the floor of the ocean, and nearer to the Philippines than it’s to China.

The Navy’s preliminary assertion stated three of the sailors injured within the accident had been evacuated to Manila for medical therapy. The Japan Coast Guard introduced that the salvage location is about 320 km from the capital Manila – inside vary of Vinson’s Osprey tilt-rotor plane, which might carry injured sailors from the ship. airport to the Philippine capital.

In keeping with Navy paperwork, the service can elevate a wrecked airplane from a depth of 20,000 toes utilizing a remote-controlled automobile the Navy calls CURV-21. Weighing over 3 tons, the boxy underwater drone might be deployed from the deck of a Navy rescue ship or industrial vessel and managed by technicians on the floor by way of cables.

Final 12 months, the Navy used the CURV-21 on a Norwegian-flagged civilian ship known as the Grand Canyon II to MH-60S . helicopter salvage from a depth of greater than 19,000 toes within the North Pacific Ocean.

Contacted by telephone, an government with Volstad Maritime, which owns the Grand Canyon II, stated the ship was not concerned within the Navy’s effort to salvage the F-35. It’s at the moment leased to an vitality firm and is working in oil and fuel fields off the coast of Thailand.

The Navy might use one other ship to do the identical job, so long as it’s able to carrying an underwater automobile such because the CURV-21, which is used to attach cables from ships to plane. The ship additionally must have a crane sturdy sufficient to elevate the wreck off the ocean flooring, probably a crane able to lifting not less than 100 tons. As well as, the ship will probably want an open deck to have the ability to place the wreck there.

Throughout final 12 months’s deepwater helicopter salvage, a Maryland-based firm known as Phoenix Worldwide assisted on the Grand Canyon II. A Phoenix government contacted by telephone declined to touch upon whether or not the corporate is concerned within the present F-35 salvage effort.

We do not know, but it surely’s not out of the query, as China has proven off its personal underwater distant management automobiles. The actual query shall be: Can the Chinese language automobile function on the identical depths because the American automobile?

Provided that the F-35 crashed with an plane service strike group within the neighborhood, it’s doable that the Navy positioned a smaller escort warship, like a destroyer, to trace the engine’s location. fly down. Nevertheless, the Pentagon has rejected the concept that the Navy is racing with its Chinese language counterpart to tug the ship out of the seabed.

“I feel you’ll be able to perceive that we’re making all the right planning that we have to salvage our airplane and we’ll restore it in a well timed method, as we have now finished prior to now. previous,” John F. Kirby, a spokesman for the Pentagon, stated at a information convention Monday. “So I feel any query of getting into some type of competitors to get again what’s the truth is our greatest asset is speculative.”

Motoko Wealthy and Makiko Inoue Contribution report from Tokyo.

https://www.nytimes.com/2022/02/09/us/politics/navy-fighter-jet-china.html What Occurs When a Stealth Jet Ends Up on the Ocean Ground?

Fry Electronics Team

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