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Lockheed Martin Begins $13.6 Million Capital Investment in Support of F/A-22 Raptor Air Dominance Fighter Program
PRNewswire-FirstCall
MARIETTA, Ga.

Lockheed Martin Corp. has begun a $13.6 million capital investment project to build unique fuel test and flight operations facilities at its Aeronautics plant here that will support the efficient delivery of large quantities of F/A-22 Raptor air dominance fighters.

"These new facilities will greatly increase our ability to quickly and efficiently prepare and deliver aircraft as we progress toward high-rate production," said Bob Rearden, vice president and F/A-22 program general manager. "During the program's developmental phase -- where we were delivering relatively small quantities of aircraft separated by significant periods of time -- our legacy flight line facilities were adequate. However, as we move toward our planned delivery of slightly more than three aircraft per month, new buildings capable of supporting F/A-22 preparation and delivery activities are required."

The first of two new buildings -- an 8,500 square-foot F/A-22 Fuel Test Facility -- is already under construction and will consist of a fuel test hangar and control room, with support areas for mechanical equipment. Outside, a small fuel hydrant system will supply JP-8 jet fuel to the facility, which will be used to test the Raptor's fuel system in preparation for flight tests. During fuel tests, the aircraft fuel system will be tested for leaks, then flushed repeatedly until clean. Any necessary repairs to the fuel system then can be performed inside the new facility, which will be rated as an explosion-proof enclosure. The building should be completed and ready for operation by year's end.

The second new building -- a 30,000 square-foot F/A-22 Flight Operations Facility -- will consist of two hangars, control room areas, and support areas for storage and mechanical equipment, and will be used to prepare Raptors for flight tests, as well as subsystem functional tests and engine runs. The hangars are being designed to withstand engine runs up to and including single afterburner performance and the facility is being sited so that aircraft can taxi in and out of each hangar under power and will not require towing. This facility is currently being designed and construction will begin before the end of 2002.

The F/A-22 Raptor 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., Meridian, Miss., 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 control surface edges, antennas and radomes are built in Palmdale while its mid-fuselage is built in Fort Worth. Boeing builds the aircraft's aft-fuselage and wings. Lockheed Martin is the principal systems integrator.

The Raptor will replace the aging F-15 Eagle as America's premier front- line fighter jet starting in 2005. The Raptor has unprecedented fighter and attack capabilities with its balanced design of stealth, supercruise speed and extreme agility, along with advanced integrated avionics and the pilot- friendly cockpit. These attributes make the Raptor truly transformational and will support the goal of quick, decisive victory in future conflicts, saving 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 on Lockheed Martin Corporation, visit: http://www.lockheedmartin.com/ .

For more information on Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company, visit: http://www.lmaeronautics.com/ .

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SOURCE: Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company

CONTACT: Greg Caires, +1-770-494-1671, or greg.a.caires@lmco.com , or
Sam Grizzle, +1-770-494-3211, or sam.c.grizzle@lmco.com , both of Lockheed
Martin Aeronautics Company