The Relentless Calendar:

Larry Lawson, Lockheed Martin’s F-22 program manager, said the company will have to see some money in the Fiscal 2009 budget if the F-22 is to go beyond 183 aircraft. Congress approved a multiyear buy for the F-22 and all 183 aircraft now planned by the Air Force are under contract. However, USAF has long maintained that its real requirement is 381 F-22s. Lawson said that if there’s no movement to extend production, long-lead parts production will start wrapping up late next year, and the shut-down of the assembly line will begin.