Australian Industry Helps Drive F-35 Program Forward

Australia F-35 at Luke AFB

The enduring partnership between Lockheed Martin and Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) dates back more than 50 years with aircraft such as the Hudson, the P-3 Orion and the iconic C-130 Hercules. This legacy of cooperation and air superiority continues with the F-35 Lightning II – the most advanced 5th Generation multirole fighter jet in the world.

Though the F-35’s home is in the skies, components of the aircraft’s development and production happen right on the ground across the commonwealth of Australia. Today, Australian suppliers are making significant contributions that continue to drive the F-35 program forward and yield positive economic and industrial benefits for Australia.

As a program partner, Australia’s role in the F-35 program is significant, with more than 50 Australian companies contributing to the development and production of every single jet in the F-35 fleet. To date, these companies have been awarded more than $800 million AUD in contracts, providing high-tech manufacturing jobs for Australian industry.

Australia’s economy and industry continues to benefit from the skills and investment in the F-35. Marand’s vertical tails for the F-35A, Rockwell Collins Australia’s electro-optical assembly for the distributed aperture system (DAS) and Quickstep’s center fuselage skins are just some of the mission-critical components provided by Australian companies involved in the program.

“The F-35A will bring significant opportunities to Australian industry, with already over $800 million in local design and production work, which is expected to grow significantly as the programme matures and production increases,” said The Hon Christopher Pyne, Australia’s minister for defence industry.

F-35 Australia Industry Partners

Australian F-35 industrial partners play a key role in F-35 manufacturing. Above are just some of the key F-35 elements produced by Australian industry.

“To date, more than 50 Australian companies have joined forces with Lockheed Martin and Air Vice-Marshal Leigh Gordon’s Joint Strike Fighter Division, in contributing to the development and production of the F-35,” said Sheila Davidson, Lockheed Martin F-35 Australia Country Manager. “At the Avalon Airshow, our industry partners will get a first-hand look at the aircraft that will defend Australia for years to come.”

The F-35 program in Australia shows significant growth and promise not only now, but in the future as well. By 2023, Australian industry opportunities are expected to exceed $2.3 billion.

At the Avalon Airshow, the Australian public will have the opportunity to get an up-close look at the multirole fighter that its industry has played an important role in producing – the aircraft that signals the transformational leap in Australia’s defense capabilities.