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TAI to be second source for the F-35 Lightning centre fuselage

Under the Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) Program, Northrop Grumman ISS (NGISS) International has signed a Letter of Intent (LOI) with TAI to be a second source for the F-35 Lightning II center fuselage during the JSF Signing Ceremony held on 6 February 2007 in Ankara, Turkey.

Northrop Grumman, a principal member of the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lighting II Team, is responsible for designing and manufacturing of the center fuselage for F-35 aircraft. With the LOI, TAI will become the second source for the F-35 aircraft. The number of center fuselages to be produced by TAI will be determined depending on the number of F-35s Turkey will procure and the number of F-35s to be produced worldwide. The LOI represents a potential value in excess of $3 billion.

Under the F-35 center fuselage production program, TAI will gain the following technological capabilities:

High precision advanced technology composite part production, high level digital integration between design and production period,

Robotic controlled drilling, cutting and integration processes,

Fiber placement techniques with automatic machining for sophisticated structures,

Composite and metal bonding techniques by using high technology,

Robotic controlled precise coating and painting applications,

High standard quality applications required for 5th generation fighter aircraft.  

With the LOI, a strong strategic cooperation, which will last at least for 20 years, will be established between TAI and Northrop Grumman. This cooperation, to be initiated with Northrop Grumman, the prime contractor of the center fuselage of the F-35 Lightning II aircraft, is expected to be a long lasting and fruitful relationship that will lead to future programs.

The infrastructural investments that will be made at TAI for the JSF center fuselage production program, is believed to make TAI one of the few aerospace companies that have such capabilities.

Chosen for its best-value approach, TAI exemplifies the objective of Northrop Grumman and the entire F-35 team to bring unprecedented and innovative technologies to the armed forces. With the initiation of the production of the F-35 center fuselage at TAI's facilities, TAI aims to become a worldwide center of excellence by upgrading its existing technology for the production of 5th generation combat aircraft.

Press release issued by Turkish Aerospace Industries Inc. on June 15, 2007


 Contact details from our directory:
Turkish Aerospace Industries Inc. Airframer
Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems Airframer


 Related aircraft programs:
Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II


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