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F-35 Joint Strike Fighter

The Lockheed Martin F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is billed as a catalyst for the fifth-generation revolution, changing the face and capability of the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) and the wider Australian Defence Force (ADF).

For the RAAF, the F-35A's combination of full-spectrum low-observable stealth coatings and materials, advanced radar-dispersing shaping, network-centric sensor and communications suites – combined with a lethal strike capability – means the aircraft will be the ultimate force multiplying, air-combat platform.

The F-35A – the variant chosen by the RAAF – will have with a projected life of 30 years in service.

Ten nations are currently flying F-35s, including the US, UK, Italy, Norway, Israel and Japan. The first of Australia’s F-35A aircraft are now based on home soil after a period of training and development at Luke Air Force Base in Arizona USA, plus an epic Pacific Ocean crossing In December 2018.

More than 340 F-35s are operating today with partner nations, more than 700 pilots and 6,500 maintainers have been trained, and the F-35 fleet has surpassed more than 170,000 cumulative flight hours.

Over the coming years, Australia will purchase 72 of the advanced fifth-generation fighter aircraft as part of the $17 billion AIR 6000 Phase 2A/B program – which is aimed at replacing the ageing F/A-18A/B Classic Hornets that have been in service with the RAAF since 1985.

LATEST COVERAGE

18 Jun 2019
Lockheed Martin hits back at F-35 concerns
Lockheed Martin has released a series of statements addressing concerns from a recent report about the F-35 program’s timeline and performance. ...
18 Jun 2019
F-35 sustainment target in the sights for BAE Systems
BAE Systems Australia technicians are now working alongside the RAAF to complete on-the-job training as a blended Australian maintenance workforce sup...
12 Jun 2019
Pentagon and Lockheed Martin agree on $49bn F-35 production contract
Lockheed Martin has announced it has reached a handshake agreement with the US Department of Defense for the F-35 Lot 12 production contract, with opt...
5 Jun 2019
Program milestones for F-35 Joint Strike Fighter fleet
The global F-35 fleet has has achieved 200,000 flight hours across global operations, a significant milestone that demonstrates the program’s progr...
23 May 2019
BAE Systems UK manufacturing facility achieves F-35 milestone
BAE Systems production facilities in Samlesbury, Lancashire, has celebrated a significant milestone in the manufacturing of the F-35 Lightning II, jus...
10 May 2019
Parts of Japan’s crashed F-35A recovered
Japan has confirmed it has recovered parts of the flight data recorder (FDR) from the F-35A Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter aircraft that crashed a ...
10 May 2019
Increasing the strike and air-to-air combat capabilities of the F-35
Lockheed Martin has revealed a new weapon mounting rack to enable the F-35 A and C variants to carry two more missiles internally – increasing the a...
6 May 2019
RAAF F-35s commence first training at Salt Ash Air Weapons Range
No. 3 Squadron F-35 Joint Strike Fighters based at RAAF Base Williamtown will conduct the first round of training for the fifth-generation aircraft ov...
9 Apr 2019
Australian SMEs expand Air Force air combat capability support
Defence Minister Christopher Pyne and Defence Industry Minister Linda Reynolds have announced that a series of Australian SMEs will increase their ro...
8 Apr 2019
RAAF welcomes next fifth-generation fighters
Minister for Defence Christopher Pyne and Defence Industry Minister Linda Reynolds have officially announced the arrival of Australia’s next two F-3...
20 Mar 2019
Work begins on integration of next-gen weapons for F-35
BAE Systems has begun integration efforts for MBDA’s Meteor beyond visual range air-to-air missiles and SPEAR precision surface attack missile for t...
19 Mar 2019
JSF to help test new supply chain digitisation
The Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) program will be used by BAE Systems Australia and the Advanced Manufacturing Growth Centre (AMGC) to test a new approac...
15 Mar 2019
Minister welcomes electronic warfare specialists to Adelaide
Defence Minister Christopher Pyne has officially opened SRC Australia’s new Adelaide office at Mawson Lakes as part of the company’s domestic grow...
11 Mar 2019
MOU to secure aerospace industry and supply chain development
The Australian Defence Alliance (ADA) and Aviation/Aerospace Australia (A/AA) have signed a memorandum of understanding for partnership and collaborat...
4 Mar 2019
US Navy F-35Cs hit IOC for carrier operations
In another major milestone for the F-35 program, the Commander of Naval Air Forces and the US Marine Corps Deputy Commandant for Aviation jointly ann...
27 Feb 2019
Northrop Grumman delivers 500th F-35 centre fuselage component
Northrop Grumman has officially announced the delivery of the 500th centre fuselage for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. The centre fuselage piece for A...
27 Feb 2019
Rheinmetall launches F-35-specific munition
A new high quality munition product designed specifically for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) has been launched by Rheinmetall Defence Australia. ...
26 Feb 2019
F-35 drives significant employment growth for Quickstep
Quickstep has announced the company has raised its employment levels “significantly”, thanks to increased production volumes for the F-35 Lightnin...
26 Feb 2019
Changing the game – How the F-35 is redefining sustainment
Vince Di Pietro AM, chief executive of Lockheed Martin Australia, describes the F-35 as an operational game changer. Behind the scenes, the fifth-gen...
25 Feb 2019
Northrop Grumman secures continued Aussie F-35 MRO&U work
Northrop Grumman Australia has welcomed an announcement that it had acquired continued maintenance, repair, overhaul and upgrade (MRO&U) work for...

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