The RAAF F-35 A flies over Melbourne throughout a media sneak peek ahead of the 2023 Australian International Airshow onFeb 24, 2023.
Alex Coppel|Getty Images News|Getty Images
Lockheed Martin hopes Australia wishes to purchase more of its F-35 fighter airplanes after the nation finishes a defence evaluation, an executive at the U.S. producer stated on Tuesday.
“We hope for the opportunity to deliver additional F-35s beyond” the 72 Australia has on order, Executive Vice President of Aeronautics Greg Ulmer stated on the sidelines of the Australia International Airshow.
Ulmer likewise stated Lockheed has actually talked with Australia about teaming the F-35 with Boeing’s MQ-28 Ghost Bat fighter-like drone.
Boeing’s defence department head Ted Colbert stated throughout the air program that a collaboration would be “great news.”
In a crewed-uncrewed teaming scenario, the F-35 might function as the “quarterback” and concentrate on precise targeting while other airplane released weapons, stated Steve Over, Lockheed’s director of global service.
Australia has actually acquired 72 Lockheed F-35 A jets to form 3 squadrons, with all airplane arranged to be totally functional this year. It had actually at first revealed interest in purchasing 100.
A defense tactical evaluation thinking about Australia’s future force posture– consisting of the possible purchase of a 4th squadron of F-35 jets– was handed to the federal government onFeb 14.
Defense Minister Richard Marles, in a pre-air program speech on Monday, stated the evaluation and the federal government’s action would be revealed in April.
He stated the evaluation comes versus a background of increased tactical competitors in between countries in the area.
“In the Indo-Pacific, China is driving the largest conventional military build-up we’ve seen anywhere in the world since the Second World War. And much of this build-up is opaque,” Marles stated.
Australia, a strong U.S. ally, has actually signed up with the United States in pressing back versus China’s growing power and impact, especially its military accumulation, pressure on Taiwan and releases in the objected to South China Sea.
Lockheed’s Over stated it would take about 4 years for Australia to get more F-35 s if it put an order this year.