Pratt & Whitney on Friday received $1.5 billion for the next batch of F135 engines for the Joint Strike Fighter, covering 99 power plants for all three variants of the jet. The contract is the 10th low rate initial production deal for the company, totaling $1.95 billion, including previous long lead and sustainment awards. The contract covers the engines, as well as program management, engineering support, production non-recurring efforts, spare modules, and spare parts, according to a Pratt release. The contract is an increase from the 86 total engines bought in LRIP 9. Lockheed Martin said on July 7 it is expecting to reach a deal with the Pentagon soon for the next 160 F-35s, contracts valued at about $15 billion, Reuters reported. Lockheed’s F-35 program manager Jeff Babione told reporters at the Royal International Air Tattoo at RAF Fairford, England, the discussions for the ninth and 10th contracts should be finalized soon, according to the news agency.
Boeing’s receipt of the 10th lot contract award for the KC-46 Pegasus this week leaves just three lots left to complete the Air Force’s buy of the tanker, although a further buy of 75 additional aircraft as a “bridge” to the Next-Generation Aerial-refueling System (NGAS) seems increasingly likely.