The US Department of Defense (DoD) has awarded a $2bn contract to United Technologies division Pratt & Whitney for the 11th lot production of the F135 propulsion systems.
The low rate initial production (LRIP) contract involves the supply of 135 units of F135 engines for all three variants of the F-35 Lightning II fighter jets, in addition to the delivery of programme management, engineering and production support, spare modules, and spare parts.
F-35 programme executive officer vice-admiral Mat Winter said: “This agreement for the next lot of F135 engines represents a fair deal for the US Government, the international partnership and industry.
“Affordability is our number one priority, and by working together, we are making steady progress in reducing F-35 propulsion costs.”
The F-35 is a fifth-generation lethal, survivable and connected fighter aircraft equipped with stealth technology, advanced sensors, weapons capacity and range.
Pratt & Whitney F135 programme vice-president John Wiedemer said: “Pratt & Whitney and our supply chain remain committed to continual cost reduction for the F135 engine and to providing a superior product at the best value for our US and international customers.
“Since 2009, we have reduced the production cost of the F135 by more than half and are now pursuing additional affordability initiatives to drive down engine production and sustainment costs even further throughout the F-35’s planned lifecycle.”
The company will begin delivering the LRIP 11 engines this year.
To date, Pratt & Whitney has supplied a total of 375 units of the F135 engines.