The Pentagon announces a new interruption of F-35 deliveries in the coming months

Faced with the difficulties encountered by LM around the TR-3 update, the Pentagon announced the future suspension of F-35 deliveries in the coming months, with a possible extension until 2024.

If the Lockheed-Martin assembly lines for the 3 versions of the F-35 fighter have never stopped producing, and today manufacture nine new aircraft each month, the Pentagon has already, on several occasions, suspended delivery of these devices, for compliance issues or to give time for certain investigations to be completed.

Thus, last December, the delivery of American fighters was interrupted for almost 3 months, after a US Marines Corps F-35B suffered an engine failure during a vertical landing procedure, the pilot fortunately managing to eject before impact.

A few months earlier, in September 2022, delivery had also been suspended for several weeks after the Defense Contract Management Agency highlighted that the turbine of the device employed elements constructed with an alloy imported from China.

In 2018, delivery was also interrupted for two months, this time fora disagreement between the Pentagon and Lockheed-Martin regarding responsibility for the corrosion problems observed on certain aircraft, and therefore the payment of the $120 million in repair and modification costs required to resolve the problem.

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Last December, a US Marines Corps F-35B crashed during a vertical landing procedure following a loss of power that caused deliveries of the aircraft to be suspended for 3 months

This will also be the case in the coming weeks, but this time for a relay that will greatly exceed the interruptions of a few previous weeks. Indeed, The Pentagon has Informed LM that it would stop taking delivery of the new F-35s in the coming weeks, as long as the initial combat capability of the new TR-3 version, which will begin to be delivered in August, has not been validated.

However, according to LM, this validation will only take place at the end of the year, in December more precisely, resulting in a delivery interruption of more than 4 months, and obliging the aircraft manufacturer to store up to 45 aircraft in the waiting for the green light from the Pentagon.


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