Following the F-35B's performance before a European crowd, leaders at Pratt & Whitney and Rolls-Royce announced a partnership to support F135 engines and the LiftSystems on the U.K.'s F-35B Lightning II aircraft.
"This is a team, Pratt & Whitney and Rolls-Royce, we're a team and we've been a team for a long time," said Bennett Croswell, president, Military Engines, Pratt & Whitney.
It will work like this. The two engine companies will begin a Performance-Based Logistics approach to sustainment for the propulsion systems.
Basically, Pratt & Whitney will focus on the system-level performance of its F135 engine. Rolls-Royce will lead the support of its LiftSystem technology the company developed and produces. In short, this strategy targets a cost-effective approach on maintenance for the customer.
"If you look at how the tools we use successfully to bring the cost of the engine down and to hit our targets every, we're taking a page out of that same playbook," said Mark Buongiorno, vice president, F135 Propulsion Systems. "We're looking at what are the mechanisms, what are the tools to drive down costs for the sustainment program."
"It's all about affordability. Because our goal is – it doesn't work if we're not saving money, being more efficient, and making the aircraft more available," said Jarrett Jones, vice president, Rolls-Royce LiftSystem Program.
The companies signed a memorandum of understanding, or "MOU," agreeing to improve synergy, laying the groundwork for enhanced propulsion systems support in the future.
"We want to bring down the cost of the propulsion system, not just what it costs to make it but what it cost to sustain it," said Cheryl Lobo, senior director, F135 Program.
"We've been collaborating since the beginning of the program on the development of the propulsion system, especially the STOVL propulsion system, what this agreement does today is brings it a step further more effective support for our customers," said Kathy Ferner, senior product manager, F135 Program.
"We're focused on our team delivering affordable readiness," Croswell said.