US Navy, Air Force Order 16 More F-35 Jets Costing Over $1Bln - Pentagon
WASHINGTON (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 25th September, 2021) The US Navy and Air Force have ordered from Lockheed Martin another 16 F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jets costing more than $1 billion in all, the Defense Department announced.
"Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company (of) Fort Worth, Texas is awarded a $1,099,631,252 modification ... contract," the Defense Department said in a press release on Friday. "This modification exercises options for the production and delivery of 16, Lot 15 F-35 Lightning II aircraft: 10 for the Air Force and six for the Marine Corps."
The defense Department said work on the contract will be performed in Fort Worth, Texas (57%); El Segundo, California (14%); Warton, United Kingdom (9%); Cameri, Italy (4%) and other locations and is expected to be completed in May 2026.
In July, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Charles Brown described the F-35 jet as the cornerstone of the US fighter fleet for the foreseeable future. However, critics continue to charge that the Air Force and Lockheed Martin have not addressed the aircraft's more than 860 remaining technical issues.
The F-35 development began in 2001 and the weapon system has turned out to be the most expensive one in US history. The F-35 program has been delayed more than eight years and is $165 billion over the original cost expectations, according to the Government Accountability Office.