USAF's F-35A Lightning II to receive upgrade from FRC East


The US Air Force’s F-35A Lightning II aircraft will receive an upgrade from Fleet Readiness Center (FRC) East operated by the US Navy.

The FRC East received the first F-35A aircraft, which was flown from Eglin Air Force Base in Florida, US, on 9 August.

As part of the upgrade, the aircraft will receive several depot and field-level airframe modifications.

F-35 Integrated Product Team lead Don Jeter said: "The modifications are standard for the airframe and will increase the lethality of the aircraft.”

FRC East played a key role in helping the US Marine Corps (USMC) achieve the initial operating capability for the F-35B in 2015.

It also helped the USMC in achieving the additional capability to repair the F-35A model.

"The modifications are standard for the airframe and will increase the lethality of the aircraft."

Jeter added: "With this induction and the planned future inductions of some F-35C's later this year, FRC East will expand its capability to service all three variants of the F-35.”

The expanded capabilities at FRC East are in line with the planned future course for the air station.

MCAS Cherry Point is expected to become a major hub for F-35s by 2026, according to the 2016 Marine Aviation Plan.

Jeter further added: "It is indicative of the growing scope of work at FRC East and the fifth-generation aircraft.

"FRC East is posturing itself to become the preferred provider for all F-35 depot level maintenance and modifications on the East Coast."