Pentagon acquisition chief Ellen Lord said she is confident that the Department of Defense can hand down a decision in March on Lockheed Martin's readiness to begin full-rate production of the F-35 aircraft, Military.com reported Friday.
Lord, four-time Wash100 Award recipient, plans to visit Naval Air Station Patuxent River in Maryland this week to check the status of the fighter aircraft program's virtual testing infrastructure known as the Joint Simulation Environment.
The report noted that Lockheed could start manufacturing at least 160 F-35s each year once the company receives a green-light from the Pentagon.
Bloomberg reported Thursday the ongoing pandemic has delayed exercises required to test whether the aircraft can work against sophisticated threats in a simulated environment.
A spokesperson for DoD's F-35 program office told the publication that simulation events are intended to take place in December.
Lord will deliver the keynote address at Potomac Officers Club's 5G Summit, scheduled for Oct. 27, to discuss emerging programs, priorities and challenges associated with 5G framework integration.
Click here to register for the event to learn about the impact that innovative technologies and 5G integration have on the private and public sectors, the steps the federal agencies have taken to remain up to speed with the rapid advancement of technology, and the future programs, plans and priorities as the nation aligns with emerging technology.