LOCKHEED MARTIN FIFTH GENERATION STEALTH FIGHTER, F-22 RAPTOR SECURES THE SKIES WITH OVERWHELMING PERFORMANCE
FARNBOROUGH, England, 19-JUL-06 -- Only six months after reaching Initial Operational Capability (IOC), the Lockheed Martin [NYSE:LMT] F-22 Raptor continues to perform with overwhelmingly effective results.
In a discussion with news media representatives today at the Farnborough International Air Show via live video satellite feed from Marietta, Ga., Larry Lawson, Executive Vice President and General Manager of the F-22 Program at Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company highlighted the exceptional results and performance of the F-22 Raptor. He said the F-22, the only 5TH Generation stealth fighter flying today, is performing exceptionally well in the air. He also touted the continued superb production delivery accomplishments of the company and said that during the past three months Lockheed Martin delivered nine Raptors to the U.S. Air Force from April through June, the most ever for a quarter.
According to U.S. Air Force officials, during recent U.S. joint exercise Operation Northern Edge in Alaska where the Raptors trained with the Air Force, Navy, Army and Marines, F-22s dominated several air-to-air engagements that included facing an opposing force at a four-to-one disadvantage. In each circumstance the F-22 teams – paired with joint-service jets such as F/A-18 Hornets, F-15C/E Eagles, E/A-6B Prowlers and E-2C Hawkeyes – were able to soundly defeat their enemies, according to an Air Force official involved in the exercise.
“We had several weeks' worth of intense joint operations with Sailors, Marines and Soldiers, said Lt. Col. Wade Tolliver, 27th Fighter Squadron commander. He said Operation Northern Edge offered Air Force, Navy and Marine forces some of the most robust air-to-air training to date.
We have been able to show that the integration of the F-22 with current Department of Defense assets, from fighters to surveillance aircraft, can produce a team that is unmatched, Tolliver added. We'll continue to conduct joint training, so as a total force we'll be prepared to respond to regional threats anywhere in the world.
“The F-22 is capable of dominating any adversary in the air and or the ground through an unmatched combination of stealth, supercruise speed and precision strike,” said Lawson. “Raptor pilots love what it brings to the fight and the maintainers appreciate the effective high tech approach to sustaining the fleet through the use of onboard diagnostics and an automated and integrated sustainment system.”
“I continue to be amazed at what the F-22 brings to the warfighter and our nation,” said Al Norman, Lockheed Martin F-22 test pilot, also from the same live video satellite feed in Marietta, Ga. With 500 flight hours in the Raptor over the past seven years, first with the Air Force and now with Lockheed Martin, Norman said the overwhelming performance of the Raptor does not surprise him with the amount of revolutionary engineering that went into creating the F-22.
Norman has been a test pilot for 12 years and has flown 50 different aircraft and has accumulated more than 5,000 flight hours. Even with such superb credentials, he said flying the F-22 brings a smile to his face each and every time he is in the cockpit of the Raptor. “The maneuverability and precision of the F-22 are different from any other jet that I have flown. The Raptor’s 5TH Generation capabilities are what make it stand out from the rest.”
The F-22 Raptor, the world's most advanced fighter, is built by Lockheed Martin in partnership with Boeing and Pratt & Whitney. Parts and subsystems are provided by approximately 1,000 suppliers in 42 states. F-22 production takes place at Lockheed Martin Aeronautics facilities in Marietta, Ga.; Fort Worth, Texas; Palmdale, Calif.; and Meridian, Miss., as well as at Boeing's plant in Seattle, Wash. Final assembly and initial flight testing of the Raptor occurs at the Marietta plant facilities.
The Raptor reached Initial Operational Capability in December 2005. Lockheed Martin has delivered 74 F-22s to the U.S. Air Force as of June 30, and 107 Raptors are currently on contract. The stealthy 5TH Generation fighter is currently assigned to four bases across the United States:
• Testing is conducted at Edwards AFB, Calif.
• Tactics development takes place at Nellis AFB, Nev.
• Pilots and maintenance teams receive training at Tyndall AFB, Fla.
• Operational F-22s of the 1st Fighter Wing are assigned to two squadrons at Langley AFB, Va.