According to a contract released by the U.S. DoD (Department of Defense) on June 29, 2020, Lockheed Martin Corp., Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co., Fort Worth, Texas, is awarded a $360,800,000 not-to-exceed undefinitized contract modification (P00038) to previously awarded fixed-price-incentive-firm-target contract N00019-17-C-0001. This modification provides for the procurement of four F-35C Carrier Variant Lot 14 aircraft for the Navy.
The F-35C Lightning II is the U.S. Navy’s first low-observable carrier-based aviation platform. The F-35 is being purchased to replace the F/A-18C/D Hornet as the carrier strike group’s primary offensive fighter for aerial defense and close air support.
The F-35C variant has larger wings and more robust landing gear than the other variants, making it suitable for catapult launches and fly-in arrestments aboard naval aircraft carriers. Its wingtips also fold to allow for more room on the carrier’s deck while deployed.
The F-35C also has the greatest internal fuel
capacity of the three F-35 variants. The F-35C carries nearly 20,000 pounds of
internal fuel for longer range and better persistence than any other fighter in
a combat configuration. And, like the F-35B, the F-35C uses probe and drogue
refueling. This allows the Navy to operate its carriers a safe distance from
the threat while its fighters reach remote targets.
The F-35 has two internal weapons bays with four weapons stations. The two outboard weapon stations each can carry ordnance up to 2,500 lb (1,100 kg), or 1,500 lb (680 kg) for F-35B, while the two inboard stations carry air-to-air missiles. The F-35C has no internal gun and instead can use a Terma A/S multi-mission pod (MMP) carrying the GAU-22/A and 220 rounds; the pod is mounted on the centerline of the aircraft and shaped to reduce its radar cross-section. It can also be used for different equipment and purposes, such as electronic warfare, aerial reconnaissance, or rear-facing tactical radar.
Date: 30 June 2020
Source: Navy Recognition