The Finnish Government has announced Lockheed Martin’s 5th Generation F-35 Lightning II is the aircraft selected from its HX Fighter Program. By selecting the F-35, Finland gains a significant capability to ensure stability in the region. The Finnish Air Force will receive 64 F-35A multirole stealth fighters, a robust weapons package, a sustainment solution tailored to Finland’s unique security of supply requirements, as well as a comprehensive training program. The F-35’s advanced capabilities transform the way air forces conduct operations. It is the most advanced, survivable and connected fighter aircraft in the world, giving pilots an advantage against any adversary and enabling them to execute their mission and come home safe.
Its interoperability facilitates seamless information exchanges with surface and air platforms, strengthening interoperability between the different branches of the Finnish Defence Forces. The F-35 selection will deliver economic and technical advantages to Finland for decades to come. Finnish industry will have many first-of-a-kind opportunities to work directly on F-35 production and sustainment. Through indirect industrial participation projects outside of F-35 production, Lockheed Martin will build industry partnerships with Finnish companies and academic institutions that offer opportunities focused on developing and advancing security partnerships far into the future.
“We are honored the Government of Finland through its thorough, open competition has selected the F-35, and we look forward to partnering with the Finnish Defence Forces and Finnish defence industry to deliver and sustain the F-35 aircraft,” said Bridget Lauderdale, Lockheed Martin’s vice president and general manager of the F-35 Program. “The F-35 will provide Finnish industries unique digital capabilities that leverage 5th Generation engineering and manufacturing. The production work will continue for more than 20 years, and the F-35 sustainment work will continue into the 2070s.”
The Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II is an American family of single-seat, single-engine, all-weather stealth multirole combat aircraft that is intended to perform both air superiority and strike missions. It is also able to provide electronic warfare and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance capabilities. Lockheed Martin is the prime F-35 contractor, with principal partners Northrop Grumman and BAE Systems. The aircraft has three main variants: the conventional takeoff and landing (CTOL) F-35A, the short take-off and vertical-landing (STOVL) F-35B, and the carrier-based (CV/CATOBAR) F-35C. To date, the F-35 operates from 21 bases worldwide, with nine nations operating F-35s on their home soil. There are more than 730 F-35s in service today, with more than 1,535 pilots and 11,500 maintainers trained on the aircraft.