June 30 (UPI) — Lockheed Martin was awarded a $360 million contract modification this week to build four F-35C aircraft for the Navy, the Department of Defense announced.
The deal funds the procurement of four F-35C Carrier Variant Lot 14 aircraft, a long-range stealth strike fighter built explicitly for carrier operations.
According to Lockheed, the F-35C has larger wings and more robust landing gear than other F-35 variants, making it suitable for catapult launches and fly-in arrestments on naval aircraft carriers.
More than half the work on the contract will be performed at Lockheed’s Fort Worth, Texas, worksite, with other work being carried out at El Segundo, Calif., Warton, Britain, and other U.S. worksites.
The expected completion date for the project is May 2023.
In March, Lockheed received a $4.7 billion contract for 78 F-35 Joint Strike Fighter aircraft, which included 16 F-35C aircraft for the Navy.
Earlier that month, the contractor announced that it had delivered its 500th F-35 aircraft.