First two Australian-made JSF support cabins now with Defence

The Department of Defence has formally accepted the first two of 15 deployable cabins – which will provide secure, transportable workplaces to support F-35 Joint Strike Fighter operations and maintenance – from Lockheed Martin Australia.

These “Deployable Duty Facilities” were produced by Newcastle engineering company Varley Group, and delivered to Lockheed, which provided technology fit-out, in March. The modules are now at Williamtown RAAF base.

The DDFs “provide secure facilities to support mission planning and debriefing” during F-35 operations away from a home base.

“When operating the F-35, off-board information systems are required to operate seamlessly in operational scenarios, and these Australian built and designed cabins make this possible,” Vince Di Pietro, CEO of Lockheed Martin Australia, said.

“The standard ISO sized cabins meet the highest-level specifications for transport by air, land or sea, security and sustainment and their digital systems are optimised for ADF operations.”

Stephen Ciobo, defence industry minister, said the cabins were made using Australian steel, adding 20 jobs at Varley and 50 others in the Hunter region.

“The F-35 Program has had a positive impact on Australia’s growing defence industry, which has collectively been awarded in excess of $1 billion in production contracts as part of the global program,” he said in a statement.

“This will support up to 5000 Australian jobs by 2023.”

The first two F-35 aircraft are scheduled to arrive on December 10.

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