16 novembre 2018 | International, Aérospatial

UK to double F-35 fleet with 17-jet order, Defence Secretary announces

Ministry of Defence, Defence Equipment and Support, and The Rt Hon Gavin Williamson CBE MP

The multi-million-pound contract signed will see the UK own 35 stealth jets by end of 2022 with Britain manufacturing 15% of the overall global order for 255 aircraft.

The UK is set to double its number of world-beating F-35 stealth jets after ordering 17 more aircraft, Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson has announced.

The 17 new F-35B aircraft will be delivered between 2020 and 2022 and will complement the 16 British aircraft currently based at RAF Marham and in the US, as well as two additional aircraft which are already on order.

Overall, the UK has committed to procure 138 aircraft over the life of the programme.

Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson said:

I am delighted to confirm that we are doubling the size of our F-35 force into a formidable fleet of 35 stealth fighters. This is another massive order in the biggest defence programme in history. Our military and industry are playing a leading role in the F-35 programme. We are now building this game-changing capability that will soon be ready for frontline action. This programme is set to bring an immense boost of £35 billion into the British economy, and it will be welcome news to our firms that many more jets are now set for production.

The 17 jets being ordered are part of a $6 billion contract for 255 aircraft being built for the global F-35 enterprise.

The announcement is also good news for the UK economy, as British companies are building approximately 15% by value of all 3,000-plus F-35s planned for production. It is projected that around £35 billion will be contributed to the UK economy through the F-35 programme, with around 25,000 British jobs also being supported.

CEO of Defence Equipment and Support, Sir Simon Bollom said:

As the largest operator of F-35s outside of the US, the acquisition of 17 more Lightning aircraft underscores our commitment to the programme. This new contract demonstrates how our Armed Forces are equipped by DE&S with the latest equipment and support.

News of this latest order comes as F-35B aircraft are currently embarked on HMS Queen Elizabeth for flying trials in the US, which continue to progress well. The fighter jets will be jointly manned by the Royal Air Force and the Royal Navy and can operate from land and sea, forming a vital part of Carrier Strike when operating from the Queen Elizabeth Class aircraft carriers.


Sur le même sujet

  • Did Pakistan drop Leonardo as lead on Sea Sultan aircraft conversion?

    9 septembre 2021 | International, Aérospatial

    Did Pakistan drop Leonardo as lead on Sea Sultan aircraft conversion?

    A source with knowledge of Pakistan's defense programs tells Defense News that Paramount Group is now the lead contractor on the conversion project, with Leonardo relegated to supplying hardware.

  • House progressives demand Pentagon cuts, citing pandemic

    21 mai 2020 | International, Aérospatial, Naval, Terrestre, C4ISR, Sécurité

    House progressives demand Pentagon cuts, citing pandemic

    By: Joe Gould WASHINGTON ― More than two dozen Democrats are demanding that House Armed Services Committee leaders cut defense spending in the 2021 defense policy bill, saying the money would be better spent combating the coronavirus pandemic. A May 19 letter, mostly from Congressional Progressive Caucus members, marked a prelude to what could be complicated efforts to pass the National Defense Authorization Act in the Democrat-led House. The panel is expected in the coming weeks to introduce and mark up a draft, in line with the $740 billion top line set by the 2019 budget deal. But 29 Democrats ― led by House Progressive Caucus Co-Chair Mark Pocan of Wisconsin and Rep. Barbara Lee, a senior appropriator and California progressive ― said the defense spending should be lower than last year's $738 billion top line. With Americans dying from COVID-19 by the thousands, tax dollars would be better spent on an expansion of testing, contact tracing, treatment and vaccine development, they said. “Congress must remain focused on responding to the coronavirus pandemic and distributing needed aid domestically,” the lawmakers wrote. “In order to do so, appropriators must have access to increased levels of non-defense spending which could be constrained by any increase to defense spending.” “Right now, the coronavirus is our greatest adversary. It has killed more than 90,000 Americans, far surpassing the number of casualties during the Vietnam War,” the letter read. “America needs a coronavirus cure, not more war. We need more testing, not more bombs." How the loss of support from 29 House Democrats will factor into passage of the NDAA remains to be seen. In a note accompanying the letter, the organizers noted that if Republicans held back support ― which they did last year ― only 19 Democrats would need to vote “no” this year for the bill to fail. Last year, House Republicans resisted an early version of the 2020 bill written by House Democrats, but even after many of their priorities were stripped out in negotiations with the Republican-controlled Senate, the compromise bill still passed the House without them, 377-48. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi found common ground with the White House on an eleventh hour paid parental leave provision that attracted most Democrats. This year, House Armed Services Committee Chairman Adam Smith, D-Wash., has spoken in favor of working to protect the defense-industrial base through stimulus funding. But with a stimulus bill caught in a partisan deadlock, it's unclear whether lawmakers will see the NDAA as a potential vehicle for defense industry aid. If so, that could be a sticking point. Last month, Smith told reporters that public health needs were more pressing and that within the Pentagon's existing $738 billion budget, defense officials "have a lot of money and ought to spend that money to meet those needs” before Congress considers more. HASC ranking member Mac Thornberry, who led early Republican opposition to last year's bill, has said he is hopeful this year's bill will be more bipartisan. Thornberry, R-Texas, also opposed the idea of cutting defense to fund health care needs. “I bristle a bit at the notion, ‘well, of course [the Department of Defense has] got to get their budget cut,' " he said, “because the world's not going to be safer on the other side of COVID.” https://www.defensenews.com/congress/2020/05/19/house-progressives-demand-pentagon-cuts-citing-pandemic/

  • With a new setup, the Air Force hopes to improve information warfare operations

    21 juillet 2020 | International, Aérospatial, C4ISR

    With a new setup, the Air Force hopes to improve information warfare operations

    Mark Pomerleau The Air Force is realigning the cyber mission force teams it provides to U.S. Cyber Command as a way to have intelligence personnel work more closely with cyber operators. In the past, Air Forces Cyber was made up of cyber and intelligence personnel from 24th Air Force and 25th Air Force, respectively. However, the arrangement created difficulties with command relationships and oversight of teams since the intelligence operators served beneath a separate Air Force command with a separate commander. But in October, the Air Force decided to merge 24th and 25th Air Force into 16th Air Force/Air Forces Cyber, placing cyber, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, electronic warfare and weather capabilities under one commander, and creating the Air Force's first information warfare entity. The new organization also serves as the Air Force's component to Cyber Command. The new organization of teams moves intelligence forces from the 70th Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Wing to the 67th Cyber Operations Wing. “We looked at the intelligence squadron and focused on the position descriptions that really were supporting the cyber mission force ... so that we can merge those intelligence professionals into the cyber operations squadron in order to build the mission elements that supported the combatant command requirements,” Col. Lauren Courchaine, commander of the 67th Cyberspace Operations Group, told C4ISRNET in an interview. Specifically, these teams are combat mission teams – the teams that conduct cyber operations on behalf of combatant commands mostly in the offensive sphere – and cyber support teams, which provide intelligence, mission planning and other necessary support work for combat mission team. Officials at the creation of 16th Air Force said the integration would allow the service to provide more robust teams to Cyber Command. This new structure - with cyber operators, developers and intelligence forces in the same room and read in on the same missions - provides a tighter mission thread, Courchaine said. In the past, she said, when cyber operators needed intelligence support, they'd have to ask their intelligence teammates who weren't always privy to the mission or technical context, which created gaps. “Now when you have those conversations with intelligence airmen, operators and developers all in the same forum, sometimes in the same room with the same whiteboard, you come to integrated solutions up front in early vice having to work through a process where that one piece of information, potentially out of context, is levied on the intelligence requirement to somebody that you don't know in another place ... to try to understand truly what the intelligence piece that you're looking for,” Courchaine, said. “When you fuse all of them together, I think the output is significantly better and drives that operationally speed, the agility and flexibility that [16th Air Force commander] Gen. [Timothy] Haugh is looking after.” The final realignment package is still at the Air Staff awaiting final approval with details regarding new units still to be determined, to include a new group activated under the 67th Cyberspace Wing and three new squadrons. Gaining insights from joint operations The team realignment also extends to Air Force cyber teams that serve under commanders of other services under different Joint Force Headquarters-Cybers. The way cyber operations are structured within DoD is individual services do not have their own offensive teams. Instead, these teams work through several organizations, each formally known as Joint Force Headquarters-Cyber that exist beneath Cyber Command, which in turn provide planning, targeting, intelligence and cyber capabilities to the combatant commands to which they're assigned. The heads of the four service cyber components also lead their respective JFHQ-C. These organizations oversee combat mission teams and combat support teams. Courchaine said the Air Force teams, those that conduct operations in Central Command under Joint Force Headquarters-Cyber and operations focused on China under Joint Force Headquarters-Cyber Fleet Cyber, can bring a global perspective a back to the service. These teams conduct operations on behalf of European Command, Strategic Command, Transportation Command and Space Command. In some theaters, with the high tempo of operations, such as Central Command, the approach allows the teams conducting operations to bring back lessons learned to their respective services. “You can see how these three areas will really converge and enable Gen. Haugh from a 16th Air Force perspective to not just be successful in aligning the forces appropriately but driving that return on investment where we're able to converge target sets globally ... to drive operations so that we can influence our adversaries in support of national security objectives,” she said. https://www.c4isrnet.com/cyber/2020/07/19/with-a-new-setup-the-air-force-hopes-to-improve-information-warfare-operations/

Toutes les nouvelles