The DoD announced Friday the $353.2 million award
to United Technologies Corp (UTC) subsidiary, Pratt and Whitney Military Engines, for performance based logistics and sustainment support of the F-135 propulsion system for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter
. US Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, non-U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) participants and foreign military Sales (FMS) customers are covered in the deal. Under the terms of the deal, P&W will provide maintenance of support equipment, common program activities, unique and common base recurring sustainment, repair of repairable, field service representatives, common replenishment spares, conventional take-off and landing/carrier variant F-135 unique maintenance services, and short take-off and landing F-135 unique services. Work will primarily take place at East Hartford, Connecticut (73 percent); but also Oklahoma City, Oklahoma (18 percent); Camari, Italy (3 percent); Eglin Air Force Base, Florida (2 percent); Edwards Air Force Base, California (1 percent); Hill Air Force Base, Utah (1 percent); Luke Air Force Base, Arizona (1 percent); and Beaufort Marine Corps Air Station, South Carolina (1 percent). Work will be completed by November 2018.
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.