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April 18, 2011

Boeing engineers say F-35 progress proves wrong team won

Now that Lockheed Martin has performed so admirably on the F-35 program, five years behind schedule and close to 100 percent over budget, Boeing partisans can renew their claims that the Pentagon picked the wrong team to develop the Joint Strike Fighter.

“Whenever we hear about Lockheed’s difficulties with the JSF, we all look at each other, and say, “They didn’t pick the right product,’” said Cynthia Cole, a former flight test engineer on the Boeing program from 1997 through 2002. Cole, now working outside Boeing, also was president of the Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace from 2006 through 2010.

In particular, Boeing engineers mutter about the STOVL version. They claim that Boeing’s design, which relied on rerouting the thrust of the main engine, would have been more trouble-free than the Lockheed Martin design, which also includes a central shaft-driven fan.

But DoD Buzz suspects the Boeing folks might have had their own problems meeting wildly optimistic (and demanding) schedules and budgets. 

- Bob Cox




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Looks good, flies good. Enough said.


Boeing's version was just plain butt-ugly...that's why it didn't win. They should've given more thought into who really picks these things...AF generals who were PILOTS. Marketing 101.


It' hardly surprising that Boeing would think the wrong company has been picked.

However the history of these contracts is always one of delays and over-runs, and they probably would be in that position now if they had been given the contract.


In any case, would Boeing say that the Pentagon picked the right team? How is this news?

Mike H.

Right on, Wrascal! The Boeing entry was beyond ugly...also, if anyone else failed to read the original story Bob Cox so graciously linked, these opinions expressed aren't official Boeing spokesfolk anyway. The one direct quote came from a FORMER Boeing engineer, not someone now employed with the company.

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