Rubber Band Man

The overall F-35 program saw a $1.8 billion increase in development costs because a once-deleted capability has been added back in by the services, program director Lt. Gen. Christopher Bogdan reported. The “Band 25” electronic warfare capability was cut out when the program hit its Nunn-McCurdy cost overruns circa 2011, but the services have restored it. The change will be cut into production starting in Lot 10, when apertures and conformal antennas will be built onto jets coming off the production line, to avoid physical rework later. The software to create the new capability will come in the Block IV first upgrade for the fleet, Bogdan explained. “The threat is driving the requirement,” he told reporters at a Pentagon press conference.