Tuesday, August 27, 2013

F-35: Will 40% drop in ALIS price mean more foreign sales?

Possibly.  However, just as important is the cost savings the new ALIS system will bring to the program as a whole:
Lockheed Martin Corp said it is close to an agreement with the Pentagon for a more portable and 40 percent cheaper version of the operations and logistics system that controls the F-35 fighter, the Pentagon's most expensive weapons program.

Lockheed aims to finalize a contract with the Pentagon's F-35 program office in coming weeks that will pay for development of lighter units to operate the new warplanes when they are deployed or based on ships, company officials told Reuters late on Wednesday.

Couple this with the recently announced 22% drop in the estimated cost of all F-35s over 55 years and you're beginning to see some significant money pared from the program.  It will also give potential foreign buyers a little reassurance that the cost savings promised have a very good chance of coming to fruition.

Of course, these sorts of savings will keep critics up at night since they've essentially been reduced to the 'cost' argument and it isn't cooperating.


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