Military Embedded Systems

F-35 Joint Strike Fighter procurement agreement reached by DoD, Lockheed Martin


October 28, 2014

John McHale

Editorial Director

Military Embedded Systems

WASHINGTON. Lockheed Martin and U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) officials reached an agreement in principle regarding the production of 43 F-35 Lightning II aircraft and expect the Low-Rate Initial Production lot 8 (LRIP 8) contract to be finalized before the end of the year.

"Once production of LRIP 8 aircraft is completed, more than 200 F-35s will be in operation by eight nations," says F-35 Program Executive Officer, Lt. Gen. Chris Bogdan.

The LRIP 8 contract covers purchases of 29 U.S. aircraft including 19 F-35As, six F-35Bs, and four F-35Cs. It also enables the production of the first two F-35As for Israel, the first four F-35As for Japan along with two F-35As for Norway and two F-35As for Italy. The United Kingdom (UK) will get four F-35Bs. The contract also provides funding for manufacturing-support equipment as well as ancillary mission equipment.

Long-term cost savings in this program will come from Lockheed Martin's Blueprint for Affordability concept, that the company launched earlier this year. It aims to cut the price of an F-35 5th generation fighter to the equivalent of today's 4th generation fighters by 2020. The initiative is based on leveraging upfront investments from industry partners Lockheed Martin, BAE Systems, and Northrop Grumman to reduce production costs. Cost savings from this initiative will begin in LRIP 9.

The LRIP 8 contract is under fiscal year 2014 with deliveries expected to begin in 2016. Cost details will be released once the contract is completed. Generally speaking the average unit price for all three variants of the airframe in LRIP 8 is about 3.6 percent lower than the previous contract, according to Lockheed Martin.

The LRIP 8 aircraft join 166 F-35s contracted under LRIPs 1-7. As of October 24, 2014, 115 F-35s, including test aircraft, were delivered by Lockheed Martin. The U.S., eight Partner nations, and Foreign Military Sales participants have announced plans to procure more than 3,100 F-35 aircraft over the life of the program.


Featured Companies

Lockheed Martin

6801 Rockledge Drive
Bethesda, MD 20817
Avionics - Computers
Topic Tags