The jet's [F135] engine is too big to fit in the C-2 Greyhound resupply planes that fly spare parts out to aircraft carriers at sea, reports Bill McMichael of Navy Times. That goes for the [F-136] alternate engine, too.
Technicians can break the Pratt & Whitney F135 engine down into components and fly them out that way, but nobody wearing brown shoes is wild about the risks of disassembling, shipping and reassembling something so essential.
McMichael picked up the info at the annual Tailhook convention in September, he writes; the head of the F-35 program acknowledged to his audience of aviators that transporting the Lightning II's engine is a "huge challenge."
The Navy needs to be able to fly replacements out to its ships to account for natural wear and accidents.
This wrinkle will be further complicated if Congress forces the Pentagon to buy the alternate engine, which could create a parallel universe of logistics and maintenance for squadrons.
Click here for the full story, on the Navy Times website.