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12:08 PM, April 18, 2019
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Lockheed Martin Working on $25000 Per Flight Hour Operating Cost of F-35
F-35 joint strike fighter

Lockheed Martin is working on achieving a $25,000 Cost per Flight Hour (CPFH) for its F-35 joint strike fighter by 2025.

The CPHF target is comparable to the cost to sustain legacy aircraft, while providing a generational leap in capability; a Lockheed Martin release said adding that the target will be deliver 80 percent mission capable rates in the near term.

"As the F-35 fleet expands, we are partnering with our customers and taking aggressive actions to enhance F-35 readiness and reduce sustainment costs," said Greg Ulmer, Lockheed Martin vice president and general manager of the F-35 program.

The F-35's reliability and readiness continues to improve and newer production aircraft are averaging greater than 60 percent mission capable rates with some operational squadrons consistently near 70 percent. Additionally, Lockheed Martin has reduced its portion of operating costs per aircraft by 15 percent since 2015.

Previously under annual contracts, the new multi-year Performance-based logistics (PBLs) allow each company to make longer term investments and actions to reduce costs and improve efficiencies. In addition to PBL contracts, Lockheed Martin has established 12 Master Repair Agreements (MRAs) with key suppliers to enhance repair capacity and speed.

The PBLs cover several contracts with BAE Systems, Northrop Grumman and Collins Elbit Vision Systems (CEVS); and the MRAs cover contracts with 12 separate suppliers including Honeywell, GE and Eaton.

As more aircraft enter service, the enterprise is optimizing resources across the fleet and leveraging data across hundreds of thousands of flight hours to achieve these goals. The program is conducting supply chain competitions, building supply chain capacity, synchronizing spare buys, improving parts reliability and maintainability, implementing advanced analytics tools, enhancing the Autonomic Logistics Information System (ALIS), accelerating modifications of earlier aircraft, and supporting the stand-up of government-led regional warehouses and repair depots.

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