P-8 Poseidon Update: Critical Systems Fail Due To Counterfeit Parts

Anyone who has been following the Defense Industry for awhile, and the growth of the Chinese counterfeit/knockoff industry saw this coming.  This whole affair could have been prevented had due diligence been paid to the inspections and examinations of parts from sub-contractors. It could also have been prevented had the DoD simply mandated that ALL systems in US weapons programs be entirely manufactured in these United States, by US companies.

Regardless: From defensetech.org

Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin (D-Mich) just dropped a couple of very alarming tales during a hearing about counterfeit parts making their way into brand new U.S. military weapons.

Earlier this year, Boeing and the Navy found that the ice detection system on a brand new P-8 Poseidon was defective. The ice detection system is a critical piece of hardware designed to prevent tragedies by alerting pilots to the presence of ice on an aircraft’s control surfaces. Where did this defective part come from? China. A whole batch of a key piece of the ice detection hardware that was sent to the P-8 production line turned out to be used and worn out parts that were badly refurbished and sold to P-8 subcontractor BAE Systems as a new part, according to Levin. Boeing and BAE first became aware of the problem in 2009, he added.

The fake P-8 parts are just one of many examples of how counterfeit parts — often made from 1980s and 1990s-vintage junk computer parts that are sanded down and remarked in China and then sold back to the U.S. as brand new computer chips for advanced weapons systems. One witness at the hearing just described growing counterfiet semiconductors seeping into critical weapons systems as “ticking time bombs.”

P-8 Poseidon


1 Response to “P-8 Poseidon Update: Critical Systems Fail Due To Counterfeit Parts”

  1. 1 Scott Cochran "Scooter" AW1 Retired
    November 18, 2011 at 20:59

    Too bad these kind of things are now the “norm”. And unfortunately, this may only the one of many things we will find wrong with the P-8 as time goes along. We already know it cannot match the ASW of the P-3 but the other bad part on the flip side of the coin is that the P-8 and its crew will never be fully ASW tested until the SHTF and then it will be too late to fix it.

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