If the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is going to make low-rate initial production on time, says Lockheed Martin’s Dan Crowley, Congress must approve long-lead LRIP funding for 2006. Discussing the JSF program at the AFA conference Tuesday, Crowley said the Air Force version—the conventional take-off and landing F-35A—is slated to fly late next year. So far, the program is on schedule, making its initial “power on” milestone within the last two weeks.
The Air Force overall reduced its size by 120 aircraft in fiscal year 2021, but kept about the same number of fighter, bomber and attack aircraft, according to data supplied by the service. The F-35 fleet saw the biggest increase while the B-1B bomber fleet saw the largest decline.