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Boeing | Events | Fighters & Attack | Support & Maintenance | USA

Aging Aircraft: Cracks in USA’s F/A-18 fleet

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Latest updates: US Marines wearing ’em out. F/A-18C to Afghanistan(click to view full) In October 2008 a fleet-wide inspection program and limited grounding became necessary after aileron hinge cracks are discovered in some of the US Navy’s 630 or so F/A-18 A-D Hornet fighters. Discovery of new cracks in March 2010 led to a much wider grounding. The USA’s is watching the average age of its fighter fleet rise, and will continue to do so even if all F-22s and F-35s envisioned in current Pentagon plans are purchased. The long saga of the USA’s F-15A-D fleet culminated in early retirement for a number of its aircraft. The A-10C re-winging program acquired added urgency with the revelation that wing cracks had been found in active aircraft. Now the US Navy’s long-serving F/A-18A-D Hornet fleet can be added to the list. Events & Updates F/A-18D at Al-Asad(click to view full) Aug 25/11: AOL Defense reports that some USMC Hornets are reaching service life limits, which have risen to 9,000 – 10,000 flight hours after the full Service Life Extension Program. “Headquarters Marine Corps – Aviation, who oversee the service’s aviation budget, were adamant the SLEP effort would go no further than the […]

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