Fighter jets are exciting, able to cruise through the sky at Mach speeds, but this makes it hard to capture truly stable video of them in flight. Despite this, Saab has been able to capture some incredibly smooth footage of their Gripen Jet fighter courtesy of a gyro-stabilized camera system developed by a Gyro-Stabilized Systems (GSS) at the behest of the Swedish firm, Blue Sky.
Blue Sky commissioned GSS to construct the stabilizer as their own client, Saab Defense, and Security required high-quality still and motion captures of their Gripen jet fighter in action. Most stabilization systems that are available on the market are only usable on helicopters and at speeds of up to 125 knots, which was insufficient for these jets. The result of GSS’ hard work was a 5-axis gimbal upon which Blue Sky attached a Red Dragon 6K mounted with a Canon 30-300m lens, the entire assembly then connected to a weapon bay on a fighter jet. The system required no cable connectivity between the cockpit and the camera and Aerial DP Peter Degerfeldt, who was in the back seat of a Saab 105 was capable of operating the gyro system using a modem.
Degerfeldt stated, after the first flight that “It was a dream come true.” “It couldn’t have gone better, no problem what so ever at those speeds, both in panning or even looking straight down,” he said. During the first test flight, he was capable of zooming in at 300mm and it remained stable despite traveling at 300 knots in temperatures as low as -20 C. It was even capable of standing up to their attempts to unsettle the system, including high-speed banks and turns, pulling 2.5Gs and even rolling.
The footage itself is almost surreal in how smooth and stable it is as if you are right there on the jet. It really makes you wonder if Top Gun 2 will look this good if it ever materializes.
In modern air battles, combat takes place beyond the visual range of the pilots, requiring extensive use of radar in order to locate and evade or attack enemy targets. As a result, in an aircraft touted as the most advanced jet fighter ever built, a flaw in its radar would put it at a huge disadvantage against vastly less developed jets. US Air Force Major General Harrigian spoke to analyst firm IHS Jane’s, telling them “What would happen is they’d get a signal that says either a radar degrade or a radar fail – something that would force us to restart the radar.”
Thankfully Lockheed Martin has discovered the cause of the glitch and are working towards a solution to the problem as well as running it through the software testing labs. The fixes are expected to be delivered to the US Air Force by the end of the month, however, this new problem has caused countries such as Australia to reconsider their orders of the plane. Keith Joiner, the one responsible for evaluating the plane’s performance for the Australian defence force said in a discussion with Radio National Background Briefing: “Some systems like the radar control are fundamentally worse than the earlier version, which is not a good sign.” With the next major software version for the plane, Block 4, not due until 2020, all development of the plane’s software since 2013 has been bug fixes, which hardly instills confidence in the original quality of the code. According to Joiner, the plane does not even have competent cyber security in place, with the only system that has undergone such testing being the logistics software, which did not have promising results.
With each F-35 jet approximately priced at about £100m, it is no wonder that nations are starting to lose faith in the 15-year long project. Each new flaw discovered in the F-35 just adds to a laundry list of past issues making other offerings seem far more attractive to the armed forces. The HMS Queen Elizabeth carrier is expected to take on a complement of 36 F-35 jets by 2018, but whether this ever comes to pass seems less likely with every new flaw and delay.
Hey look here’s a window, let’s just chuck a bucket load of money out of it! this seems to be the vision of the doomed US F-35 stealth jet which has seemingly grasped its pipe and slippers and put its wings up for a mock battle. During said mock battle with the adversary being the US military own F-16 fighter plane, the F-35 outcome was that it was “too sluggish” to hit an enemy plane or dodge gunfire, according to a report.
To my mind, dodging gunfire is an important life skill to have for any multi-trillion-dollar army. During the practise battle, the pilot of the F–16 jet had to avoid being metaphorically hit while being weighted down by weapons, while the F-35 had zero weapons and one confident pilot. Well, the F-35 had the turning circle of one of Roman Abramovich’s expensive yachts and missed every time, or as the report stated, the F-35 “remained at a distinct energy disadvantage for every engagement.”
Well I suppose they only spent a couple of million on the F-35 program, yes they did spend a couple of million on the fin alone, as the actual cost of this project according to Lockheed Martin so far has been $1.5 trillion dollars. This fighter plane implements an Autonomic Logistics Information System (ALIS), a next-generation software system which includes 5 million lines of code and it turns out it can’t move very fast in battle.
Governments cannot fully grasp the notion of ensuring any project has a structure in place to control costs at all. It’s false economy to pump so much money into a program which has spiralled out of control, if $1.5 trillion dollars had been reinvested in say helping Americans instead of bombing warzones, perhaps people would be better off with more security. Cash will always be found for agendas and the funny thing is, at least in part, every US citizen is paying for the privilege of having a jet which cannot hit the enemy.
Thank You RT for providing us with this information
A 55-year-old quadriplegic woman has flown a F-35 Joint Strike Fighter simulator using only her mind. Jan Scheuermann, who was paralysed years ago by a rare genetic disease, is a patient of an experimental Pentagon robotics program. As part of the program, she has electrodes implanted in her brain which allowed her to control an artificial arm. The same technology then allowed the Pentagon initiative, run by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), to hook Scheuermann’s brain directly into the F-35 simulator.
The Director of DARPA, Arati Prabhakar, revealed the breakthrough during the Future of War conference last week. “Instead of thinking about controlling a joystick, which is what our ace pilots do when they’re driving this thing, Jan’s thinking about controlling the airplane directly,” said Prabhakar. “For someone who’s never flown — she’s not a pilot in real life — she’s flying that simulator directly from her neural signalling.”
“In doing this work, we’ve also opened this door,” she continued. “We can now see a future where we can free the brain from the limitations of the human body and I think we can all imagine amazing good things and amazing potential bad things that are on the other side of that door.”
Scheuermann says she’s proud to be involved in the pioneering study, telling CBS, “I’ve always believed there’s a purpose to my illness. I didn’t think I would ever find out what it was in my lifetime.”
“And here came this study where they needed me. You know, they couldn’t just pick any Tom, Dick or Harry off the street. In a few years, the quadriplegics and the amputees that this is going to help — the Department of Defense is funding some of this for vets — to be of use to them, in service to them, what an honour.”