Tue. 19 Sept notes

Nothing really changed since yesterday – Nigel still heading towards the British Isles, with maybe a turn towards Iceland as an extratropical storm, but no landfalls forecast at this point. Sun isn’t up over most of the Atlantic, but here’s a composite image for filler …

click to embiggen.

Another probably “fish storm” brewing off the coast of Africa, NHC has a 70% chance of becoming at least a depression. No threat to land at the moment, or probably ever.

For coastal Georgia and South Carolina, a complex low pressure complex seems to be forming just offshore. NHC has a yellow blob-of-doom at 30% chance of “subtropical” formation. It may bring some gusty winds and heavy rain, but on the Enki threat scale (Meh/Inconvenient/Hazardous/Dangerous) it looks to be at most inconvenient at this point, just a messy Thursday and Friday.

Also in the GA/SC area, much has been made of the fact an F-35 “stealth” fighter crashed after the pilot ejected for some reason (the pilot is in the hospital but apparently ok). The aircraft apparently kept flying for a bit, and was lost for a while (the crash site was not found until last night). Quote of the day (keeping in mind the high price, troubled history, and dubious operational capabilities of the F-35): “The real surprise here is that the trillion dollar moneyhole managed to fly far enough to go missing.

Can’t add much to that!


  1. Reply to your F 35 look back about 15-20 years ago. NFA team was having trouble in the pilot and Iraqi war mega killer ejected. He landed safely, but the FAA team kept flying out into the Atlantic. The Navy had to send another jet to shoot it down.

    1. Even better, the “Cornfield Bomber”, in 1970 a F-106 went in to a flat spin, the pilot ejected (which of course changed the C/G) and the airplane came out of the spin, kept flying, and made a very nice landing in a corn field. Was re-habbed and actually few again! https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cornfield_Bomber

  2. YEP, it’s unbelievable to me – with all of our so called high US military technology and spy ware, we are not able to find a $100 milll crashed F-35 jet???
    are we becoming a BANANA REPUBLIC?????

    1. In fairness, it’s harder than you might think. Assuming the transponders failed during ejection (which is likely), remember this thing has about the same radar profile as a trash can. Unless somebody sees it come down you might only have a general search area it can take a few hours (which it did).

      I’ve done Search and Rescue flights, and even having a transponder beacon all the way down, it’s sometimes tricky to find the actual aircraft or debris field.

  3. When they fly in non war situations, they have a couple of little blocks attached that make them visible to radar.

    For as much grief they catch in the US, there sure are a lot of countries buying them.

    1. True about the radar reflectors, but how well those would work in a situation like this where only primary radars are the sensor platform trying to track it. We don’t know enough details to really say (altitude, etc).

      As for “buying” them, that’s a really interesting interplay of marketing, US pressure and politics, subsidies, as well as military strategy and tactics concerns. Technical characteristics are often not the major driver in that environment. My suspicion is the F-35 won’t fare well in sustained, high-intensity combat against a near-peer adversary. I’m pretty confident modern Russian AD systems can track it, and these days if you can track it you can kill it.

  4. I just love your sense of humor, Chuck … the saga of the missing fighter jet sounded like a scene from, “ It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World” … or better yet, “Car 54, Where Are You?” Thanks! 👻

Leave a Reply