Friday, July 25, 2014
FORT WORTH, Texas -- A ceremony was held Thursday at Lockheed Martin for the official roll out of the first two F-35 Joint Strike Fighters for the Royal Australian Air Force. The F-35 will provide the RAAF with fifth generation fighter capability and provides benefits to the Australian aerospace industry, with more than $412 million already contracted and up to $6 billion in expected manufacturing orders over the life of the program. AU-1 and AU-2 will undergo functional fuel system checks before being transported to the flight line for ground and flight tests in the coming months. They'll be delivered to the RAAF later this year and will be based at Luke Air Force Base, Ariz., where they'll be used for Australian and partner country pilot training. (Source: Lockheed Martin, 07/24/14) Gulf Coast note: Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is the training center for the Air Force, Navy and Marine variants of the Joint Strike Fighter.