Cost and Safety Benefits when Implementing the Analytical Condition Inspection (ACI) Program on the F-35A (Lightning II) Fleet
Pabón Martínez, José D
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In 2012 , the first F-35A’s (conventional takeoff and landing)  fighter jets took off the production line to join the US Air Force (USAF) fleet. Since then, this weapons system has flown in multiple missions within the US nation and foreign countries. Meanwhile, as more hours are added to the air vehicle, more maintenance hours are required in order keep them in the air. Even though maintenance looks at the natural wear caused by the environment, air speed, external load, maneuvers and other factors, the analytical condition inspection (ACI) program supports and complements this effort by revealing flaws or imperfections that probably may not otherwise be visually noticed through normal unit level maintenance, intermediate level maintenance and programmed depot maintenance (PDM) inspections . As a result, this process acts as a proactive approach which ensures the USAF a safer taskforce while assuring the taxpayer a more economic & effective system. Key Terms – ACI, ASIP, PDM, SPD, USAF.