Australian defence officials have been urged to consider round-the-clock dehumidification systems at an Air Force base near Newcastle to curb the corrosion risk for its fleet of Joint Strike Fighter jets.
Auditing and consulting firm KPMG was tasked with doing a report on the "intergranular corrosion mitigation options" for the 72 F-35A fighter jets, bought by the Australian Defence Force for $17 billion.
Concerns over the risk of metal stress and cracking were raised in 2017, the year before the next-generation fighters were due to come to Australia.
The FOI report obtained by the ABC said of the three bases where the jets would be based, only Williamtown, near Newcastle, had been identified as having potential problems.
The risk is posed by salt and other climatic conditions.
As a result, KPMG recommended the full-time use of mobile dehumidification units, in conjunction with other systems.
The projected costs for the infrastructure have been redacted in the KPMG report released through FOI. (end of excerpt)
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