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BAE Systems to Lead Agreement to Support F-35 Fleet; Mark Perreault Quoted

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BAE Systems will lead a two year agreement to deliver enhanced maintenance and training services for the UK F-35 fleet, the company reported on Thursday. The F-35 Joint Program Office (JPO) entered into a contractual agreement with Lockheed Martin to support operations at RAF Marham. 

“The services and expertise being provided via the Lightning Air System National Availability Enterprise (LANCE) effort will be integral to the daily operations and readiness of the Lightning squadrons of the Royal Navy and Royal Air Force,” said Mark Perreault, sustainment senior program manager, Lockheed Martin Aeronautics. 

BAE Systems has been assigned as the on-site lead for industry to lead an expert team, enabling them to execute the potential $101 million, two-year agreement. BAE Systems will support maintenance, mission planning and training services for the UK’s F-35 Lightning fleet.  

The training and maintenance support will ensure UK F-35 jets are ready and available for their first operational deployment. “As part of Lightning Team UK, our priority is to ensure our support solution at RAF Marham remains world-class to enable the deployment of UK jets whenever and wherever they’re needed,” said Edward Sheldon, head of UK F-35 Sustainment & RAF Marham site lead, BAE Systems Air. 

The contract extends on the existing sustainment service at RAF Marham and will provide aircraft upgrades, maintenance, synthetic and maintainer training on-base. Additionally, the contract will provide the ability to customize specialist pilot equipment at one of the first Pilot Fit Facilities outside of the nation. 

“The industry team worked closely with the Lightning Delivery Team and the JPO to provide a contract which will support the Lightning Force operations and the increasing inventory of jets,” Perreault added. 

The UK F-35 jets are maintained by a partnership between Lockheed Martin, BAE Systems, Pratt & Whitney and Rolls-Royce as part of Lightning Team UK. The team works with the Royal Navy and Royal Air Force to achieve a ‘whole force’ approach in support of the UK’s F-35 fleet.