The development of the JSF (F-35) will cost less than budgeted

02/04/14

"The most expensive military program for conventional weapons in history has marked an important victory, with 11,5 billion less for the development of the JSF thanks to the program efficiencies and not to the decrease in the quantity of production".

This is what emerges from the annual report of the Government Accountability Office or Gao, the investigative section of the Congress that has dealt with the expenses for the Pentagon's military programs.

After the note by Gao, those of Lockeed Martin, the American company that won the tender for the (troubled) development of the Joint Strike Fighter.

The current cost of the F-35 program has dropped by 3,3 per cent. The development of the Jsf is now estimated in 332,3 billions of dollars for the acquisition of 2457 fighter.

It should be emphasized that the current estimate of the Gao is lower than that of the Pentagon which had foreseen an expenditure for the development and production of fifth-generation fighters equal to 392 billion.

But let's analyze some passages of the report.

"Lockheed Martin is starting to produce with higher quality components than the required quality standards".

"The production line was improved, although it was suspended for three months due to engine and turbine problems."

"In the 2013, only 35 aircraft were delivered, eight less than originally planned. Another month of delay in deliveries was caused by the track of the final assembly plant that was resurfaced ".

Even the trillions of dollars for the coming decades in operating and maintenance costs of the aircraft are confirmed, even if once the line is up and running, the sum will go down.

Franco Iacch

rheinmetal defense