Australian, UK F-35 Reprogramming Lab opens
The Australian and UK F-35 Reprogramming Laboratory has opened at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida.
The Reprogramming Laboratory is a joint partnership between Australia and the UK. It will produce Mission Data Files (MDF) for Australian and UK F-35s, which compile information about the operating environment and assets in an area, before being loaded onto the aircraft pre-flight using a portable hard drive.
The laboratory will support Australian and UK F-35s by developing, verifying, validating and issuing F-35 MDFs for Australian and UK-fielded F-35s. Both countries are co-funding and supporting the capability under a 50/50 funding arrangement.
Australia’s Minister for Defence, Linda Reynolds, said this new capability will enable the F-35 to be a ‘smart’ aircraft.
‘Combined with the aircraft’s advance sensor suite, this provides the pilot with a clearer battlespace picture,’ Reynolds said. ‘Today’s opening is a key milestone in the delivery of this programme to the Australian Defence Force.’
Australia’s F-35A is expected to achieve Initial Operating Capability in December 2020, and Final Operating Capability in late 2023.
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