Australia may buy more Super Hornets amid F-35 delays: report
Written by Reuters, Monday, 11 April 2011
Australian defence officials plan to raise concerns about project delays and the possibility of a serious gap in Australia's air defences from 2020 onwards when they visit the United States this week, the Australian newspaper said.
Military chiefs were preparing options to plug the gap, including the A$1.5 billion (US$1.6 billion) purchase of 18 extra F/A-18F Super Hornets, adding to 24 of the aircraft bought in 2007 to fill a strategic hole, the paper said, without naming sources, Reuters reports.
Australia plans to buy up to 100 stealthy F-35 Lightning's for an estimated A$16 billion and has so far ordered 14, with the air force's first squadron hoping to be operational by 2018.
But a recent report by a U.S. government budget watchdog found the F-35 program, already behind schedule, was likely to experience additional production problems and cost increases, while also criticising the project's risk management.
Australia's Department of Defence could not immediately comment.
Australian defence chiefs have previously said they are committed to the F-35 purchase, while Lockheed Martin insists that problems in the United States will not derail the 2014 delivery timetable for the first F-35 squadron.
Australia has already begun a multi-billion-dollar upgrade of its military that includes new air defence destroyers, two large amphibious assault ships, helicopters, tanks, long-range cruise missiles and 12 new submarines costing $25 billion.($1 = 0.955 Australian Dollars)
Top stories this week
Operator of Finnish nationwide Tetra network VIRVE once again relies on Airbus Defence and Space
by AIRBUS Defence & Space, 15 December 2014Finland continues to invest in Tetra technology to guarantee users uninterrupted network performance and quality of service.
Airbus Defence and Space reveals Tetrapol evolution path towards mission-critical broadband standard
by AIRBUS Defence & Space, 12 December 2014
The 4G-ready Tetrapol technology adds broadband capabilities via dual-mode platforms.
The Swedish Defence Materiel Administration has signed an agreement with Airbus Defence and Space on Tetra upgrades
by AIRBUS Defence & Space, 11 December 2014
Airbus Defence and Space has signed a three-year care agreement with the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration.
Poynting moves offices
by Poynting Antennas, 11 December 2014
Poynting Defence and Specialised moved premises to new offices in the N1 Business Park in Centurion.
Saab to supply new-generation AT4 to the French armed forces
by Saab, 11 December 2014
The company has been awarded the contract by the French Ministry of Defence procurement branch, the Direction Générale de l'Armement.
Enstrom offers factory standard technical training course in Africa
by Safomar Aviation, 8 December 2014
The course was presented in co-operation with Safomar Aviation, the sole distributor of the Enstrom helicopter range in Africa.