VALDOSTA, Ga., 24 July 2013. Saft engineers are designing unprecedented Li-ion technology for Lockheed Martin’s 5th Gen F-35 Lightning II single-seat, single-engine, fifth-generation multirole jet fighters under a $6.5 million contract with General Electric Aviation for low-rate initial production (LRIP).
Saft will produce a state-of-the-art, high-power battery that provides the back-up power for electro-mechanical actuation for the flight control surfaces. The battery will provide in-flight emergency backup power to the aircraft’s critical systems. Each ship set consists of one JSF 270V and one JSF 28V battery per aircraft.
As part of the contract, Saft will meet More Electric Aircraft (MEA) industry objectives that aim to optimize aircraft performance and reduce gas emissions.
Three variants of the F-35 will replace the A-10 and F-16 for the U.S. Air Force, the F/A-18 for the U.S. Navy, the F/A-18 and AV-8B Harrier for the U.S. Marine Corps, and a variety of fighters for at least 10 other countries.
To date, the F-35 battery development program has logged more than 6,000 flight test hours.
“Working on the F-35 program gives Saft the unique opportunity to advance the role of Li-ion solutions in state-of-the-art aircraft,” says Thomas Alcide, General Manager of Saft’s Specialty Battery Group. “Saft is proud of our long history of remaining at the forefront of U.S. military technology and providing unmatched performance and solutions where batteries are most critical.”