The US Department of Defense has taken actions to reduce F-35 fighter sustainment costs, but the estimated life cycle costs have increased and are not fully transparent to the military services, the Government Accountability Office has stated in its October 2017 report.
According to the GAO report published October 30 this year, the services do not fully understand how the costs they are being charged by the F-35 program office are linked to the capabilities they are receiving.
The program office cites unexplained cost increases and difficulty in tracking their requirements to contracts. For instance, the US Marine Corps received an initial funding requirement for fiscal year 2017 sustainment of $293 million, which then increased to $364 million in the execution year, the report stated.
This lack of transparency is due in part to insufficient communication between the program office and the services, and it puts the services in a difficult position as they consider critical trade-offs that may make F-35 sustainment more affordable. Without improving communication with the services about the costs they are being charged, the services may not be able to effectively budget for long-term sustainment, the GOA report concluded.
The Dutch Ministry of Defense may cancel the purchase of last three F-35 fighter jets due to high dollar rate. The MoD may not have enough money to buy the last three of the 37 fighter jets as the government plans to purchase, State Secretary Barbara Visser of Defense wrote in a letter to the Tweede Kamer, the lower house of Dutch parliament, ANP news wire reported Thursday
Norway takes delivery of first three F-35A Lighting II aircraft from the US firm Lockheed Martin in a ceremony at Ørland Air Base, on Friday. “We mark the start of a new era for the Norwegian Armed Forces,” said Norways Minister of Defence Frank Bakke-Jensen
Lockheed Martin is being awarded a $34.6 million contract for weapons capabilities technology maturation and risk reduction pre-engineering, manufacturing and development activities for dual-capability F-35 Lightning II joint strike fighter aircraft and small-diameter bomb 2 (SDB-II) in support of the Marine Corps and Air Force
Norway became the first foreign nation to receive the delivery of Block 3F mission data from US Air Forces 53rd Electronic Warfare Groups Partner Support Complex last week. “Our software provides the Norwegian F-35 an unprecedented precision attack capability – a crucial element to maintaining peace,” Robert Kraus, F-35 PSC director said in a statement Wednesday
The Israeli Air Force has received two additional F-35I Adir stealth fighters at the Nevatim ABF on Wednesday. The two fighter jets bring the current squadron to a total of nine
The shortage of spare parts for the F-35 aircraft has degraded readiness. The aircraft were not able to fly about 22 per cent of the time in the past year due to shortage of spares, Government Accountability Office has stated in its latest report
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