BAE Systems Receives Contract to Sustain F-35 Electronic Warfare Systems
NASHUA, New Hampshire — BAE Systems has received a contract from Lockheed Martin to ensure the readiness of critical electronic warfare (EW) systems on the F-35 Lightning II fighter aircraft, BAE announced in a May 22 release. Under the five-year contract, BAE Systems will manage the supply chain and establish the infrastructure necessary to make sure the systems are mission capable and available to warfighters.
“As a leader in EW systems for the world’s most advanced aircraft, we understand how critical readiness is for our customers,” said Betsy Warren, director of F-35 Sustainment at BAE Systems Inc. “We’ll ensure that the F-35 EW supply chain is in place for Lockheed Martin and the Department of Defense.”
The EW suite for the F-35, called the AN/ASQ-239 system, protects the aircraft with advanced technology for critical missions. The system’s advanced avionics and sensors provide a real-time, 360-degree view of the battlespace, helping to maximize detection ranges and provide the pilot with options to evade, engage, counter or jam threats.
Under the contract, BAE Systems will maintain regional warehouses with on-hand inventories of critical EW components to improve fill rates and reduce wait times. The company will also establish various metrics that will be used to further strengthen confidence in the supply chain.
This F-35 sustainability work is based on performance-based logistics (PBL), a cost-effective, outcome-based support strategy that focuses on system readiness. BAE Systems has more than a decade of PBL experience with the U.S. Air Force, U.S. Navy and multiple public-private partnerships that support U.S. military systems, as well as more than five years of experience with F-35 sustainment and international maintenance support.
BAE Systems has a 15 percent workshare on the F-35 program across the global company. This includes the BAE Systems Inc. business in the United States, which delivers the aircraft’s electronic warfare capability, and the company in Australia, which is involved in delivering manufacturing and support.
In the United Kingdom, BAE Systems manufactures the aft fuselage, horizontal and vertical tails — effectively the rear section — of every F-35, regardless of the aircraft's variant and destination. This work takes place at the company’s facility in Samlesbury, Lancashire, where BAE Systems uses purpose-built robotic technology to manufacture the component parts from both titanium and aluminium and then assembles them using a “pulse line” technology. In Rochester, Kent, BAE Systems provides the Active Interceptor System that the pilot uses to direct and maneuver the aircraft.