Flight data recorder from Japan's crashed F-35A retrieved, but key data still missing
Japan Times -- May 08
The Defense Ministry has retrieved part of the flight data recorder from a F-35A stealth fighter that went missing last month, but it was heavily damaged and also did not include a storage device to record speed and altitude data, Defense Minister Takeshi Iwaya told reporters Tuesday.

The discovery on the sea floor, the exact location of which has been withheld for security reasons, is therefore unlikely to help determine the cause of the crash.

What looked like some parts of the stealth fighter — which cost more than ¥10 billion — were also spotted on the sea floor, about 1,500 meters below the surface. The Defense Ministry plans to salvage them, said a public relations officer with the Air Self-Defense Force in Tokyo.

The F-35A stealth fighter went missing on April 9 about 135 kilometers east of Misawa Air Base in Aomori Prefecture, during a combat exercise together with other three F-35As.

The pilot, Maj. Akinori Hosomi, has yet to be found.

The crash of the F-35A, which was made by U.S. firm Lockheed Martin and assembled by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries. Ltd., is believed to have been the first in the world for that particular model, drawing much attention from military analysts around the world as a result.

岩屋防衛大臣は先月9日に墜落した航空自衛隊のステルス戦闘機F35Aの事故に関し、現場付近の海底でフライトレコーダーの一部を発見したことを明らかにしました。 岩屋防衛大臣:「(フライトレコーダーの)全部が発見されているわけではありませんので、かなりだから損傷が激しいのかなと。
News sources: Japan Times, ANNnewsCH
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