The armed services have been remarkably disciplined about not fiddling with the requirements of the F-35 strike fighter, said Larry Lawson, executive vice president of Lockheed Martin Aeronautics, in an interview. “They’ve been pretty solid on holding requirements steady,” said Lawson. “Together” with the services, he said, “we’ve had to flex around some of the demands that have manifested themselves in the actual fielding, for example, of the [information technology] systems,” and that has driven some requirements changes. But, “the government’s done a very good job, I think, of sticking with the fundamentals,” said Lawson. Lockheed Martin has added a new facility and 100 new software engineers to stay on top of the millions of lines of code that the F-35 uses, he told the Daily Report June 19.
The F-35 Joint Program Office has officially announced plans to issue multiple sole-source contracts to Pratt & Whitney to upgrade the fighter’s F135 engine—a widely expected move after Pentagon officials indicated they would do so earlier this year instead of developing an entirely new engine.