Tuesday, July 15, 2014

(En - 15 July 2014 - News) Israel to produce wings for F-35 stealth fighter jet

"The Defense Ministry's $250 million debt to Israel Aerospace Industries is burdening its activities," IAI CEO Yossi Weiss told Israel Hayom at the Farnborough Airshow on Monday. "We are slowing our pace, and even moving people between projects."

"However, this is a not a lost debt," Weiss continued. "For our part, we will continue to work and do all that is necessary, particularly given these tough times [the security situation in Israel]. We were able to produce the radar for the eighth Iron Dome battery and we are working around the clock to satisfy Israel's security needs."

Weiss revealed that IAI will open the production line for the wings of the F-35 stealth fighter jet in September. "We've invested greatly in setting up the most advanced line [of production], and we were one of the few companies in the world to receive a contract from Lockheed Martin to manufacture for it. We will produce 811 pairs of wings for the planes."

The F-35 is the talk of the Farnborough Airshow, which got underway on Monday, as the U.S. Defense Department nixed its expected appearance there. The F-35 was grounded after an engine fire on one of the planes last month. The cause of the malfunction has yet to be determined.

Lockheed Martin is still optimistic that the F-35 will appear at the air show toward the end of the week.

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