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11 mars 2013 1 11 /03 /mars /2013 16:20

First two production F-35 fighters in final assembly. (Phot


March 11, 2013 defense-aerospace.com

(Source: Reuters; published March 9, 2013)


Exclusive: Retrofits to Add $1.7 Billion to Cost of F-35 - GAO Report (excerpt)


WASHINGTON --- Retrofits of F-35 fighter planes to fix problems found in flight testing will likely top $1.7 billion, a U.S. government watchdog said in the draft of a new report about the Pentagon's Joint Strike Fighter program.

Extensive restructuring efforts and progress on technical issues have put the Lockheed Martin Corp F-35 program on a more solid footing, but the plane's long-term affordability remains a big concern, the Government Accountability Office said in the draft, a copy of which was obtained by Reuters.

It said the F-35 program, which has been subject to massive delays and cost overruns and now has a price tag close to $400 billion, met most of its management objectives in 2012. But it still faced big costs because of earlier decisions to start building planes before development and testing were further along. A final report is due out next week.


The program faces substantial costs to retrofit planes to address problems discovered in flight testing, GAO said. Such "rework" would add $900 million to the cost of the first four batches of jets build by Lockheed, GAO said, plus about $827 million over the next six batches for a total of $1.7 billion. (end of excerpt)

Click here for the full story, on the Reuters website.

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