A Lockheed Martin F-22 lost contact with US Air Force air traffic control at 7:40pm (11:40pm EST) yesterday during a routine mission from Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Alaska. A search is underway. As of about 8am EST, the USAF still classified the aircraft and the pilot as overdue.
The USAF has lost two F-22s in accidents since December 20, 2004. Aircraft 014 was lost on that day after maintenance procedures triggered a glitch in the flight control system. Aircraft 008 crashed on March 25, 2009, after Lockheed Martin test pilot David Cooley briefly lost control for 4sec during a 9g, split-S maneuver.
If another F-22 is confirmed lost, the USAF’s projected fleet will shrink to 185 aircraft. Lockheed is building the last 20 aircraft this year before the production line closes in February or March 2012.
USAF: Search launched for “overdue” F-22 in Alaska
By Stephen Trimble on 17 November, 2010 in Uncategorised
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