A US F/A-18 Hornet has crashed earlier today in Japan. Rescue efforts to recover the pilot would be underway. This would be the 9th major incident involving a “Legacy Hornet” (including the Canadian CF-18 lost on Nov. 28, 2016) in the last 6 months.
The rate of crashes involving legacy Hornets is alarming.
Two U.S. Marine Corps F-18 Hornets from MCAS Miramar crashed on Nov. 9 near San Diego. Another one on Oct. 25. A Swiss Air Force Hornet was lost on Aug. 29, whereas a Navy F/A-18C crashed on Aug. 2. On Jul. 27 USMC F/A-18 crashed so as the Blue Angels Hornet that crashed on Jun. 2.
The U.S. Marine Corps temporarily grounded its non-deployed Hornets. A few days after the ban was lifted, two more F/A-18Cs were lost on Nov. 9.
The U.S: Marine Corps has launched a plan that will see Boeing upgrade 30 retired legacy Hornets (currently stored at the 309th Aerospace Maintenance and Regeneration Group at Davis-Monthan AFB, Arizona) to a standard dubbed F/A-18C+.
With this upgrade, that will also embed new avionics, the service will be able to keep up with its operational tasks until the F-35 is able to take over.
Once upgraded to the C+ standard, these “gap fillers” should be more than enough to conduct combat operations in low-lethality scenarios like those that see the USMC at work these days.
Furthermore, once these “refreshed” Hornets are delivered to the squadrons, older airframes can be retired, improving flight safety.”
Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
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