Australia buys 100 F-35


Senior Member
Mar 21, 2009
Country flag
Aus Signs off on F-35 Deal

7pm TV News NSW - 25-Nov-2009

The first stage of Australia's biggest ever defence purchase has begun with the National Security Committee of the Cabinet approving the deal to buy the next generation of combat aircraft.
The Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) will cost Australia $16 billion in total and the first batch will begin arriving in Australia in 2014.
One hundred Joint Strike Fighters will be purchased in total, but initially 14 will be tested. Those 14 will cost $3.2 billion alone.
It has been a long time coming. The Howard government first announced its interest in the aircraft in 2002.
But critics say the aircraft is a second-best choice.
According to the Defence Minister Senator, John Faulkner, the Joint Strike Fighter is exceptional.
"It is a true fifth generation multi-role fighter," Senator Faulkner said.
"What it's got is a combination of stealth, advance senses, network data fusion capabilities."
The Government wants more than 20 of the fighters up and running by 2018 and 72 in service by 2021.
They will replace the ageing F/A 18 Hornets and F-111 strike force.

But the Australian Defence Association's Neil James says the Joint Strike Fighter is not the best around.
"Our big problem is the plane we should be buying, the Raptor, isn't available because the Americans won't sell it to us," he said.
"The JSF, quite frankly, is very much a second-best choice and it's an aircraft that introduces considerable technical and strategic risk, but unfortunately there doesn't appear much of an alternative."
Senator Faulkner says concerns about the jet fighter are being investigated by the United States.
"I am absolutely confident that the Joint Strike Fighter will ensure that Australia does maintain a strategic capability advantage and do so out to the year 2030," he said.
Andrew Davies from the Australian Strategic Policy Institute has questioned the decision to purchase an initial 14 aircraft.
"Well, $3.2 billion for 14 aircraft works out at about $229 million apiece, which is a very high amount, but that's because we're only buying a small number of aircraft. In a way it makes sense to either buy a lot or to buy none," he said
Senator Faulkner says only 14 fighters have been purchased for the trial to be used for training purposes and cost analysis.
Britain has threatened to pull out of a similar deal with the United States because it will not give it access to the fighter's software.
But Senator Faulkner says that is a matter for the British government.
"The Australian Government has never sought full access to source codes so as to ensure that we stay common with the core JSF program," he said.
The Opposition's defence spokesman, David Johnston, has welcomed the announcement but he thinks the cost is being underestimated.
"I don't think there's any weapons with these aircraft and I think that costs are running away from us a bit," he said.
"What this press release and what the Minister is saying doesn't actually bring us up to speed with the accounting and the economic support that is necessary in terms of dollars in this project."
The Australian Air Force will also get a squadron of F/A 18 Super Hornets next year.
All at time when the Government has committed to cutting the defence budget by $20 billion over the next decade.


Senior Member
Mar 21, 2009
Country flag
Australia to Acquire Convential Take Off & Landing F-35

November 25th, 2009

The Minister for Defence, Senator John Faulkner, today announced that the Australian Government had approved acquisition of the first batch of F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) aircraft as foreshadowed in the 2009 Defence White Paper.
There has been considerable public interest in the potential acquisition of the F-35 JSF. The Government examined the JSF’s capabilities very carefully in the context of the Air Combat Capability Review and 2009 Defence White Paper deliberations, and remains confident that the JSF’s combination of stealth, advanced sensors, networking and data fusion capabilities, when integrated into the networked Australian Defence Force (ADF), will ensure Australia maintains its strategic capability advantage out to 2030.

The Government has approved acquisition of the first 14 Conventional Take-Off and Landing (CTOL) Joint Strike Fighters and infrastructure and support required for initial training and testing, at an estimated cost of $3.2 billion.
Approval of the next batch of aircraft and all necessary support and enabling capabilities, sufficient to establish three operational squadrons and a training squadron of CTOL JSF, will be considered in 2012. This will fulfil our White Paper commitment to acquire three operational squadrons comprising not fewer than 72 aircraft.
“By 2012, Defence will have much firmer cost estimates for the remaining aircraft and necessary support and enabling capabilities as part of the planned first multi-year buy that is expected to comprise over 1000 aircraft for the US, Australia and other partners. This will allow for much more effective planning of the final JSF acquisition in the context of the overall Defence Capability Plan,” Senator Faulkner said.
Acquisition of an additional operational squadron – bringing the total number of JSF aircraft to around 100 – will be considered at a later date in conjunction with a decision on the withdrawal of the F/A-18F Super Hornet.
Australia’s first JSF aircraft will be delivered in the United States in 2014 to commence initial training and test activities. Australia’s first operational squadron will be based at Royal Australian Air Force Base Williamtown, and is planned to be ready for operations in 2018. All three operational squadrons are planned to be in service in 2021.
The decision follows many years of unprecedented evaluation and planning by all nine countries involved in the JSF’s development.
Chief of the Air Force, Air Marshal Mark Binskin said “The JSF acquisition will allow Australia to maintain its regional air combat superiority. It will also enable Australia to effectively contribute to regional security and enhances opportunities for interoperability and commonality to support future coalition operations.”
To date, 25 Australian companies have won approximately US$200 million in the development and early production phase of the JSF. As Australia and other countries commit to JSF acquisition, significantly increased opportunities for Australian industry will open up, as agreed in the Industry Participation Plan with Lockheed Martin and its JSF industry partners.
Minister for Defence Personnel, Materiel and Science, Greg Combet said: “Government and Industry will need to continue to work together as JSF Team Australia to maximise benefits for Australian industry in the JSF Program in the face of stiff international competition. Consideration of acquisition of the next batch of aircraft in 2012 will provide Government the opportunity to review Lockheed Martin’s progress on implementing the Industry Participation Plan.
The Government’s acquisition decision will also allow Lockheed Martin and its JSF industry partners to establish formal relationships with Australian industry to meet Australia’s defence self reliance requirements in supporting the JSF.
“Our commitment to the JSF will allow Australian industry to become integrated into the global JSF support system, ensuring our aircraft are supported in the most cost effective way. Commitment to the JSF also opens up opportunities for Australian industry to contribute to regional and global support of the JSF,” Minister Combet said.
The Program Manager, Air Vice-Marshal John Harvey said “This acquisition decision cements our commitment to the JSF Program and our commitment to the US and other international partners to make the JSF Program a great success.”

Australia to acquire F-35 Conventional Take-Off and Landing JSF | Frontier India Strategic and Defence - News, Analysis, Opinion - Aviation, Military, Commodity, Energy, Transportation, Conflict, Environment, Intelligence, Internal Security

Quickgun Murugan

Regular Member
Oct 1, 2009
What is Australia's threat perception apart from penguins in Antarctica? Who in the blue hell would want to attack that island that they want F-35 to defend it with?


Senior Member
Mar 21, 2009
Country flag
Indonesia and Malaysia and may be China are the biggest threats to Ozies ,
all the above countries have Su-30MKI versions which are superior to Oz F-18C/D.
these will automatically make Malaysia and Indonesia to go for PAKFA or its cheaper Version Su-35,
as one $20Bn= 100 F-35
$200Mn=1 F-35 [ Approx]
this may include
- Weapons Package
-Ground Maintenance
-Pilot Training etc......


Senior Member
Mar 18, 2011
Local Parts Delivered for First Australian F35-A

Aug. 24, 2012 - 09:48AM |

MELBOURNE - The first Australian-manufactured components for the first Australian F-35A Joint Strike Fighter were handed over to Lockheed Martin Aug. 24 in Melbourne.

Lovitt Technologies Australia, a local precision engineering and machining company, delivered the components, machined longeron assemblies for the F-35A's keel structure, in a ceremony attended by Minister of Defence Materiel Jason Clare, Head of the New Air Combat Capability Program for the Defence Materiel Organisation Air Vice Marshal Kym Osley and EVP/GM F-35 program Tom Burbage.

"This is an important day for Australia, because it's the first Australian part on the first Australian JSF," Clare said at the ceremony. "We're now taking the next big step, and that is not just making parts for U.S. Air Force or U.S. Navy, or aircraft for other countries, but we're starting to make parts for our own fighter aircraft. It leaves as a part but comes back as one of the most advanced fighter planes in the world, one which will be the spearhead protecting Australia for many years to come."

Lovitt delivered its first JSF components to Lockheed Martin in 2006 and has since won work valued at $8.5 million on the project.

It also manufactures components for Boeing commercial and military aircraft such as the Super Hornet, Chinook and, most recently, P-8 and V-22 programs.

Altogether, 30 Australian companies have won more than $300 million worth of JSF work to date, and the NACC Program Office estimates this could extrapolate to between $1.5 and $3 billion over the life of JSF production.

Australia has a requirement for up to 100 F-35As to replace its F/A-18A/B Hornets and F-18F Super Hornets, but only two aircraft are contracted at the present time, to be built in LRIP Batch 6. Another 12 aircraft have been approved but were recently deferred, and a decision on two other tranches will be made in either 2013 or 2014.

Local Parts Delivered for First Australian F35-A | Defense News |

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