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Denmark signs up for JSF program

May 28, 2002 (by Lieven Dewitte) - Denmark today officially became the third international participant in the Joint Strike Fighter program, joining the United Kingdom and Canada in the stealthy aircraft's decade-long development phase.

Lockheed Martin's JSF concept demonstrator aircraft for the U.S. Air Force, the X-35A, is nearing completion at the company's Skunk Works facility in Palmdale, Calif. [LMTAS photo]

Lockheed Martin leads an international team that expects to build at least 3,000 JSFs for the United States and allied nations. Joining the System Development and Demonstration (SDD) phase of the program enables Denmark to influence elements of the JSF design, and positions Danish industry to bid for significant work on the program.

"We're very excited to bring Denmark into the JSF family, a move that clearly reinforces the international character of this program," said Tom Burbage, executive vice president and general manager of the Lockheed Martin JSF program. "We expect Danish industry to make crucial technical contributions to this aircraft, which is destined to be the backbone of our allied air forces for the next 30 to 40 years."

Since 1980, Denmark has purchased and operated 70 Lockheed Martin F-16 fighters. The F-16 is among the aircraft JSF is designed to replace after 2010.

Some of the countries currently considering participation in the JSF program are Italy, the Netherlands, Norway and Turkey.

Lockheed Martin is developing the JSF in conjunction with its principal partners, Northrop Grumman and BAE SYSTEMS. Two separate but interchangeable propulsion systems are under development by Pratt & Whitney and General Electric.

JSF X-35 demonstrator aircraft completed a highly successful flight-test program in August 2001, and the U.S. government awarded the JSF development contract to Lockheed Martin the following October.