The Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co.-led F/A-22 Raptor air dominance fighter program team has established a brand-new, state-of-the-art avionics hardware and software installation and testing laboratory here.
Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co. is a business area of Lockheed Martin Corp.
The Raptor Avionics Integration Laboratory, or RAIL, will take F/A-22 hardware, surround it with sophisticated test-monitoring equipment, integrate it with the latest avionics software and then test it under simulated operational conditions. The laboratory was established to incorporate lessons learned from the program's ongoing developmental flight-test program at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., during which the team determined that more on- ground, laboratory-based integrated avionics testing is needed to ensure adequate avionics stability. The laboratory is located in an already existing building within the Marietta facility.
"The RAIL is key to ensuring avionics stability, which is necessary for the timely start and successful completion of the program's Dedicated Initial Operational Test & Evaluation (DIOT&E) phase," said Bob Rearden, F/A-22 program general manager. "The RAIL will enable the program to complete all outstanding avionics integration activities as we progress toward high-rate production."
DIOT&E is expected to begin next summer.
The F/A-22 Raptor air dominance fighter is built by Lockheed Martin in partnership with Boeing, powered by Pratt and Whitney engines and made from parts and subsystems provided by approximately 1,200 subcontractors and suppliers in 46 states. Principal production activities take place at Lockheed Martin facilities in Marietta, Ga., Fort Worth, Texas, and Palmdale, Calif., as well as at Boeing's plant in Seattle, Wash.
Final assembly and initial flight testing of the Raptor occurs at the Marietta factory, headquarters for the F/A-22 program's contractor team. The Raptor's low-observable wing and vertical tail edges, low-observable antennas and radomes are built in Palmdale while its mid-fuselage is built in Fort Worth. Boeing builds the aircraft's aft-fuselage and main part of the wings.
The Raptor will replace the aging F-15 Eagle as America's premier front- line fighter jet starting in 2005. The Raptor's balanced design of stealth, supercruise speed and extreme agility, along with its advanced integrated avionics and overall user-friendliness, makes the aircraft truly transformational and will allow the F/A-22 to help the Pentagon shorten future wars and save American and allied lives.
Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co., headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas, is a leader in the design, development, systems integration, production and support of advanced military aircraft and related technologies. Its customers include the military services of the United States and allied countries throughout the world. Products include the F-16, F/A-22, F-35 JSF, F-117, T-50, C-5, C-130, C-130J, P-3, S-3 and U-2.
Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co. is a unit of Lockheed Martin Corp., headquartered in Bethesda, Md. Lockheed Martin is a global enterprise principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture and integration of advanced technology systems, products and services. Employing about 125,000 people worldwide, Lockheed Martin had 2001 sales of $24 billion.
For more information about the F/A-22 Raptor program, please visit http://www.f22-raptor.com/ For information on Lockheed Martin Corp., visit: http://www.lockheedmartin.com/
SOURCE: Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company
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