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Fighters & Attack | Force Structure | Forces - Marines | Helicopters & Rotary | Specialty Aircraft | Support & Maintenance | USA

Aging Aircraft Redux: Seapower on US Navy & USMC Fleets

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F/A-18C Hornet(click to view full) This site has discussed the issue of the USA’s aging aircraft fleets, and the consequences as the average age of those fleets continues to grow: rising operating costs, uncertainty re: fleet availability, retention issues, electronics issues, effects on procurement budgets, et. al. An article about the B-52 Avionics Midlife Improvement Program discussed the consequences for the USAF’s bomber fleet. In “Aircraft Geriatrics,” Seapower Magazine takes a closer look at the consequences on the front lines for the US Navy and Marines’ aircraft fleets. The services already have the oldest fleets in their history, and even in the unlikely event that the Pentagon gets all of the aircraft it asks for, that age will continue to rise. Right now… “Pilots of the Navy’s electronic warfare aircraft were told in recent years not to maneuver their planes aggressively, and the Marine Corps’ 40-year-old CH-46 helicopters were placed under weight restrictions for months. The Navy today is struggling to keep its P-3C Orion patrol planes flying despite fatigue cracks and other maladies that threaten to curtail their remaining years of service…” [read the rest]

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