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Aircraft

April 29, 2011 | Inside the Navy
STRATFORD, CT -- Naval Air Systems Command is focused mainly on flight tests of the troubled Marine Corps short-take-off, vertical-landing variant of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, the F-35B, which appears to be "doing better," Rear Adm. Paul Grosklags, NAVAIR's vice commander, told Inside the Navy at Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation headquarters here last week.
April 26, 2011 | Daily News

Lockheed Martin stands to earn as much as $52.5 million in 2011 if it can meet five key benchmarks associated with the Joint Strike Fighter's development schedule, the company's chief executive officer said today.

Speaking via teleconference about the company's first-quarter earnings report, Robert Stevens, Lockheed Martin's CEO, said the company has been challenged by the F-35 program to achieve five major developmental milestones in 2011 under a new incentive-compensation system.

April 26, 2011 | Daily News

Joint Strike Fighter lead contractor Lockheed Martin has submitted its contract proposal for the fifth production lot of the F-35, the first step in a contracting process likely to last through the summer and into the fall.

Vice Adm. David Venlet, the F-35 program executive officer, told reporters last Thursday that delivery of Lockheed's low-rate initial production lot 5 (LRIP 5) contract proposal was “imminent,” and Mike Ryan, Lockheed's F-35 communications director, confirmed to Inside the Air Force this morning that the bid was submitted on Monday (April 25).

April 25, 2011 | Daily News

Multibillion-dollar efforts to build nuclear ballistic missile submarines, Army vehicles and F-35 Joint Strike Fighters will spearhead a new Defense Department initiative challenging program managers to deliver weapons under budget.

April 25, 2011 | Daily News

The Defense Department has managed to shave more than $3 billion from the estimated cost to develop and acquire the Joint Strike Fighter through 2035 despite recent decisions to add $4.6 billion to development efforts and push the procurement of 246 aircraft decades into the future.

April 22, 2011 | Inside the Navy
ST. LOUIS, MO -- The F/A-18E/F Super Hornet program managers for both the Navy and Boeing said here last week they will examine extending the aircraft beyond 9,000 hours, but cautioned that the program wasn't there yet and declined to identify 12,000 hours as a goal despite fiscal year 2012 budget justification documents suggesting that figure.
April 21, 2011 | Daily News

Rising costs over the last year pushed the estimated life-cycle operating and support price tag for the Joint Strike Fighter program over the $1 trillion threshold, the Pentagon told Congress last week in a report, marking a 9 percent increase over the Defense Department's 2010 calculations and bringing the government's forecast of cradle-to-grave cost for the F-35 program to more than $1.3 trillion.

April 21, 2011 | Daily News

The Defense Department withheld $28 million from Joint Strike Fighter prime contractor Lockheed Martin last year under a program set up to reward contractors for major accomplishments, according to Vice Adm. David Venlet, the F-35's program executive officer. The contractor earned $7 million in bonuses after it met only one of five benchmarks set by the JSF program office.

April 20, 2011 | Daily News

ST. LOUIS, MO -- Several of the nine F-35 Joint Strike Fighter partner nations have reached out to Boeing for information on the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, Boeing Military Aircraft President Chris Chadwick told reporters here today.

Large cost increases and repeated schedule delays have rattled international partners in their support of the F-35 program. Chadwick said "a number of potential F-35 customers have asked for information so that they can make the best decision going forward should they need to go in a different direction.

April 20, 2011 | Daily News

The Defense Department is redesigning the F-35C's launch bar after discovering last month during a ground test of CF-1 -- the first naval Joint Strike Fighter variant -- that the component did not properly hook up with the aircraft carrier catapult system used to propel fighters into flight, according to a Navy spokesman.

April 15, 2011 | Inside the Navy
NATIONAL HARBOR, MD -- Joint Strike Fighter Program Executive Officer Vice Adm. David Venlet has been on a whirlwind tour of JSF partner nations to reassure them on the progress of the troubled fifth-generation fighter, and will make visits to the United Kingdom and Denmark later this year, he told reporters at a conference here last week.
April 15, 2011 | Inside the Navy
NATIONAL HARBOR, MD -- The Navy and Boeing are engaged in "very active" efforts to sell the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet to a number of countries, and the Navy's recent decision to purchase an additional 41 aircraft helps the program do that, Capt. Mark Darrah, Super Hornet program manager, said here last week at Navy League's annual Sea Air Space conference.
April 15, 2011 | Inside the Navy
NATIONAL HARBOR, MD -- The biggest challenge in aviation is the effort to extend the service lives of legacy F/A-18A-D Hornets to as many as 10,000 hours, top Navy and Marine Corps officials agreed at a conference here last week.
April 14, 2011 | Daily News

The Defense Department will decide later this year whether to launch an independent review of Lockheed Martin's Joint Strike Fighter software development operation, which federal auditors have called for out of concern that F-35 software is behind schedule and facing increasingly complex challenges.

The review is envisioned as similar in scope to far-reaching independent assessments of Lockheed Martin's manufacturing capabilities conducted in 2009 and 2010, which ultimately informed a Pentagon decision to cut back on near-term production plans.

April 08, 2011 | Inside the Navy
The services likely will update their projected initial operational capability time lines for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter later this spring, Vice Adm. David Venlet, JSF program executive officer, told Inside the Navy last week.
April 07, 2011 | Daily News

The Defense Department believes an independent investigation of Lockheed Martin's Joint Strike Fighter software development "would be prudent" in light of federal auditors' conclusion in a new report that the F-35's software is "significantly behind schedule as it enters its most challenging phase."

April 06, 2011 | Daily News

The Air Force's B-1 bomber fleet is officially no longer capable of carrying nuclear payloads, in compliance with one of the early stages of the follow-on Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty signed with Russia last year, senior service officials told lawmakers today.

April 05, 2011 | Daily News

Air Force officials are considering a draft memorandum that would help ensure changes are not made to the KC-46A next-generation tanker program without high-level review, according to a top service official.

Air Force Secretary Michael Donley said today he is considering the memo but would not provide the details of the document's content. The Pentagon awarded Boeing a $3.5 billion contract for the first phase of the Air Force's $30 billion-plus tanker program on Feb. 24.

April 04, 2011 | Daily News

Richard Lugar (R-IN), the top Republican on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, is pressing the State Department to act on Taiwan's longstanding request to purchase U.S.-built F-16C/D fighter aircraft, "an urgent matter" that, if rejected, could leave Taipei in the next decade with "no credible air-to-air capability."

April 01, 2011 | Inside the Navy
The Marine Corps fleet of EA-6B Prowlers will be made up entirely of the latest "ICAP 3" versions by the end of the calendar year, and will have a full fleet of 32 of the aircraft by 2014, according to a Marine official.

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