Australia Wins JSF Repairs Contracts

In a major win for the nation’s defence industry, Australia has been chosen to provide maintenance, repair, overhaul and upgrade for the componentry of the Joint Strike Fighter in the Asia-Pacific region worth approximately $100 million to the Australian economy, creating and sustaining hundreds, if not thousands, of jobs.

Australia wins repair work for JSF - image by Lockheed Martin
Australia wins repair work for JSF – image by Lockheed Martin

WILLIAMTOWN, NSW Australia – November 09, 2016 – Lockheed Martin, The successful announcement comes after a trip to Washington, DC by the Minister for Defence Industry Christopher Pyne, who met with key Pentagon officials to push Australia’s case.

The Turnbull government has made defence industry a major part of its economic plan, with announcements such as this one further illustrating its critical role in growing high skilled, advanced manufacturing jobs.

Mr Pyne welcomed the US government announcement that Australia is one of just four countries that will be a regional hub for the maintenance of the Joint Strike Fighter as a red letter day for Australia’s defence industry.

“This will be a real boon for Australia and proves, yet again, that our defence industry can equal, and in fact beat the best in the world when it comes to advanced manufacturing,” Minister Pyne said.

“While contracts need to be finalised, it is estimated that this initial work will be worth between $80 and $100 million in today’s dollars and will create and sustain hundreds, if not thousands, of Australian jobs.

“This announcement today represents just 8 per cent of the total sustainment work that the US government will allocate over the next few years.

“It also comes after my recent trip to Washington where I advocated on behalf of Australian defence industry for this important work to be done in Australia.”

“It is clear that Australia will be in prime position to further expand as a regional maintenance hub and build on our local capability,” Minister Pyne said.

“What this means is that Australian industry will be responsible for the deep maintenance of components of the Joint Strike Fighter.

“While countries operating the Joint Strike Fighter will look after the basic maintenance – like changing the tyres on a car – Australia will be responsible for much deeper, complex and high value repair of the jets, similar to changing the timing belt or overhauling the engine.”

Partner countries in the JSF program were asked to bid in eleven component categories, Australia, remarkably, was successful in ten.

The Joint Strike Fighter program has been lucrative for Australia to date, with Australian industry already achieving more than $800 million in contracts from F-35 design and production work.

Today’s announcement is the next step in opportunities opening up a market for aircraft component repair which will be part of the F-35 global support supply chain and cements Australia as a key strategic partner in the global F-35 enterprise.

Australian industry has further opportunities available in the F-35 program with two additional F-35 requests for information recently issued to Australian companies for non-air vehicle deeper level repair components and regional warehousing.

A list of successful companies is below.

Components to be repaired


Lead company


Avionics (Group 1)

Components including: Throttle grip, Pilot display

BAE Systems Australia

Raytheon, GE Aviation Systems Australia

Avionics (Group 2)

Panoramic Cockpit Display, Power distribution controller

BAE Systems Australia

Northrop Grumman Australia, GE Aviation, Rockwell Collins Australia

Avionics (Group 3)

Countermeasures control, radio tuner

Northrop Grumman Australia

BAE Systems Australia, Rockwell Collins Australia, GE Aviation

Aircraft structure

Doors, panels, covers

Northrop Grumman Australia

Quickstep, BAE Systems Australia

Electric component

270V Battery, Brake control, Thermal Fan, Electrical Power Generator

GE Aviation Systems Australia

BAE Systems Australia

Refuelling valve

Air-to-air refuelling valve

RUAG Australia

H.I. Fraser

Auxiliary power system

Components including: fuel metering pump

RUAG Australia

TAE, H.I. Fraser

Hydraulic, Pneumatic, Pneudraulic, Hydro-Mechanical

Flight controls, internal pumps

RUAG Australia

Landing gear

Landing gear, wheel, brakes

RUAG Australia

Life Support System

Onboard oxygen generator, Ejection seat assembly.

BAE Systems Australia

Martin Baker Australia

Meanwhile, BAE has welcomed the news.

Ahead of a competitive field, Australia has been selected to undertake the majority of component repair assignments for the Pacific region from 2025, and ahead of other countries it has also secured an important role in global repairs from 2021 to 2025.

BAE Systems Australia will be the lead provider of global sustainment services for life support components, and will play a leading role across regional sustainment work across avionics and digital mission systems and electrical system components.

BAE Systems Australia’s role in supporting the next generation fighter aircraft will lead to the creation of more than 200 high-technology jobs to service the F-35 during its 30 years of service.

BAE Systems Australia chief executive Glynn Phillips said, “The Commonwealth government’s advocacy for Australian industry has played a key role in securing this significant high-technology work. The decision is a vote of confidence in the capability of Australian industry and testament to the expertise and readiness of BAE Systems Australia and our teaming partners.”

Securing this work will further strengthen Australia’s defence industry increasing national capability and supporting the continued growth of a highly skilled workforce.

The global F-35 program is the largest and most advanced military aircraft program in the world. More than 3,000 F-35 aircraft will be produced by 2030 for a number of countries, including Australia.
In February 2015, the US government assigned BAE Systems Australia F-35 regional airframe sustainment work for the south Pacific. Today’s assignment awards additional sustainment work to the company, which has a facility located near Williamtown RAAF base.