The Navy awarded
Pratt & Whitney a $71.4 million task order in support of the F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Aircraft for the Air Force, Navy, non-Department of Defense participants and Foreign Military Sales customers. The United Technologies subsidiary will mature the F-35 propulsion system ahead of service operational use of the fighter aircraft. The company will provide non-recurring services to help address safety and durability challenges, maintain technical performance and advance the engine technology of F-35
jets. The F-35 is a family of single-seat, single-engine, all-weather stealth multirole fighters. The Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) is a development and acquisition program intended to replace a wide range of existing, strike, and ground attack aircraft for the United States, the United Kingdom, Turkey, Italy, Canada, Australia, the Netherlands, and their allies. Work under the order will take place in Connecticut and Indiana and is scheduled to be finished by December 2023.
The $382 billion F-35 Joint Strike fighter program may well be the largest single global defense program in history. This major multinational program is intended to produce an “affordably stealthy” multi-role fighter that will have 3 variants: the F-35A conventional version for the US Air Force et. al.; the F-35B Short Take-Off, Vertical Landing for the US Marines, British Royal Navy, et. al.; and the F-35C conventional carrier-launched version for the US Navy. The aircraft is named after Lockheed’s famous WW2 P-38 Lightning, and the Mach 2, stacked-engine English Electric (now BAE) Lightning jet. Lightning II system development partners included The USA & Britain (Tier 1), Italy and the Netherlands (Tier 2), and Australia, Canada, Denmark, Norway and Turkey (Tier 3), with Singapore and Israel as “Security Cooperation Partners,” and Japan as the 1st export customer.
The big question for Lockheed Martin is whether, and when, many of these partner countries will begin placing purchase orders. This updated article has expanded to feature more detail regarding the F-35 program, including contracts, sub-contracts, and notable events and reports during 2012-2013.