The Centerpiece Of 21st Century Global Security
The F-35 began as the Joint Strike Fighter program - an effort to create an exportable 5th Generation fighter with three variants and nine partner countries. The partners contributed to development of the requirements, design and test program, drawing on the aerospace expertise of a global network of allies. The aircraft is being manufactured, tested, and flown at bases around the United States while companies around the world are building components and support equipment. The global vision of the Joint Strike Fighter program is coming to life in the F-35 Lightning II.
The F-35's nine partner countries are Australia, Canada, Denmark, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States. Suppliers in all the partner countries are producing F-35 components for all aircraft, not just those for their country. Many partners have ordered their first aircraft, and pilots and maintainers are training with their U.S. counterparts.
Israel, Japan and the Republic of Korea selected the F-35A through the Foreign Military Sales (FMS) process. Companies in FMS customer countries compete for industrial participation opportunities of the F-35 program.