FARNBOROUGH England (Reuters) – U.S. military officials have approved limited flights for Lockheed Martin’s (LMT.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) F-35 fighter jets, improving the chances of the newest U.S. combat jet making its international debut before potential buyers this week.
The F-35, the world’s most expensive weapons project with a price tag of about $400 billion, has been grounded since the massive failure of the Pratt & Whitney (UTX.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) engine on a U.S. Air Force F-35 plane at a Florida air base on June 23.
LONDON (Reuters) – British Defence Secretary Philip Hammond said Lockheed Martin Corp’s (LMT.N: Quote, Profile, Research) F-35 fighter jet may miss the Royal International Air Tattoo air show this week given a fleet-wide grounding ordered after an engine failure last month.
But Hammond told a conference in London on Wednesday that he was “still optimistic” that the new warplane would be cleared to fly in time to make a delayed international debut at the world’s biggest air show in Farnborough, outside London, next week.
LONDON, July 9 (Reuters) – British Defence Secretary Philip
Hammond said Lockheed Martin Corp’s F-35 fighter jet may
miss the Royal International Air Tattoo air show this week given
a fleet-wide grounding ordered after an engine failure last
But Hammond told a conference in London on Wednesday that he
was “still optimistic” that the new warplane would be cleared to
fly in time to make a delayed international debut at the world’s
biggest air show in Farnborough, outside London, next week.
WASHINGTON, July 7 (Reuters) – Most of the 97 Lockheed
Martin Corp F-35 fighter jets grounded last week have
been inspected, and officials hope to wrap up the remaining
inspections on Monday, which could pave the way for the
resumption of flights of the Pentagon’s newest warplane, U.S.
military officials said.
Senior officials with the U.S. Navy, Air Force and F-35
program office, as well as from Britain and the Netherlands,
will review the results of inspections of the jets’ Pratt &
Whitney engines to determine whether and under what
circumstances to resume flights.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. military said it had grounded the entire fleet of Lockheed Martin Corp F-35 fighter jets until completion of additional inspections of the warplane’s single engine built by Pratt & Whitney, a unit of United Technologies Corp.
The Pentagon’s F-35 program office, Air Force and Navy issued directives on Thursday ordering the suspension of all F-35 flights after a June 23 fire on an Air Force F-35A jet at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida, according to statements by the Pentagon and the F-35 program office.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. and British military officials are working on a joint directive to require mandatory inspections of engines on all Lockheed Martin Corp F-35 fighter jets, after an Air Force F-35A caught fire at a Florida air base last week, said sources familiar with the situation.
That incident was the latest to hit the Pentagon’s costliest weapons program, the $398.6 billion F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, and came as the plane was preparing for its international debut at two air shows in Britain.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. government on Monday published another big batch of changes to export control laws affecting military electronics, and said it was on track to finish reviewing remaining categories for possible streamlining by the end of the year.
Ken Handelman, deputy assistant secretary of state for defense controls, said the latest changes would shift some less sensitive military electronics and components from the State Department’s U.S. Munitions List to the Commerce Department’s list of commercial items, easing exports of those items while maintaining strict controls on more sensitive technologies.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Marine Corps on Friday resumed flights of its Lockheed Martin Corp LMT.N F-35B jets that were suspended following a fire on an Air Force F-35A and prepared for the jet’s global debut in Britain next month after the discovery of engine pieces from the F-35A pointed to an issue with that specific model.
“The Marine Corps will resume F-35B flight operations today. We are continuing with our plans to deploy to the UK next month,” said Marine Corps spokesman Captain Richard Ulsh.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Sikorsky Aircraft, a unit of United Technologies Corp (UTX.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), said on Thursday it hoped Pentagon officials would realize that reneging on the final year of a five-year helicopter contract would undermine confidence in future deals and drive up costs.
Sam Mehta, president of Sikorsky Defense Systems and Services, said he realized U.S. military officials were in a difficult position given mandatory cuts in defense spending, but that his company and others viewed the Navy’s plan to truncate its multiyear agreement as a “serious concern.”
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Sikorsky Aircraft, a unit of United Technologies Corp (UTX.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), won a $1.28 billion contract on Thursday to develop a new combat rescue helicopter for the U.S. Air Force, a deal that could eventually be worth up to $7.9 billion.
The initial contract covers development and delivery of four Combat Rescue Helicopters (CRH) based on the company’s workhorse UH-60 Black Hawk, and caps nearly 15 years of repeated unsuccessful efforts by the Air Force to replace its aging fleet of HH-60G Pave Hawk rescue helicopters.