AF selects WPAFB to host F-35 support organization


Submitted photo A formation of F-35 Lightning IIs from the 388th Fighter Wing and 419th FW stationed at Hill Air Force Base, Utah, perform aerial maneuvers during as part of a combat power exercise over Utah Test and Training Range.

Submitted photo A formation of F-35 Lightning IIs from the 388th Fighter Wing and 419th FW stationed at Hill Air Force Base, Utah, perform aerial maneuvers during as part of a combat power exercise over Utah Test and Training Range.


WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE — The Air Force has selected Wright-Patterson Air Force Base as the preferred location for the F-35 Lightning II Hybrid Product Support Integrator organization which supports the entire F-35 enterprise to include joint and international partners.

Air Force officials said Robins Air Force Base, Ga., was named as a reasonable alternative.

“Wright-Patterson Air Force Base has the trained acquisition professionals with the right fighter aircraft experience to run this organization for DOD’s Joint Program Office,” said Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson. “We expect this experience to help us drive down F-35 sustainment costs as we build a more lethal and ready Air Force.”

The current F-35 HPSI organization was established in 2016 in Crystal City, Va., at the F-35 Joint Program Office. HPSI supports a global fleet of more than 340 aircraft and when it moves to its new location will be led by the Air Force with a workforce from the Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps, international partners and industry. The organization will be directly accountable to the product support manager within the F-35 Joint Program Office.

This organization is an integral part of maintaining and prolonging operations of the global F-35 fleet. The new mission will bring at least 400 jobs, with the potential for more to be located at the base over the next several years.

In April, Congressman Mike Turner and Senators Sherrod Brown and Rob Portman led the entire Ohio congressional delegation in advocating to Wilson for the mission to come to Wright-Patterson because the base is uniquely qualified to handle the new mission. In a meeting Turner arranged in June, the senators and other members of the Ohio delegation met with Wilson in Washington and made the case for Wright-Patterson in person.

“In numerous discussions with Secretary Wilson, I expressed that Wright-Patterson Air Force Base provides the best opportunity of success for this incredibly important mission for our national security,” Turner said. “With (the) decision to bring the F-35 HPSI Organization to Wright-Patt, at least 400 new jobs will be added to our community as a direct result of our strong bipartisan advocacy.”

The F-35 HPSI’s primary role is to integrate support across the supply chain, maintenance, sustainment engineering, logistics information technology and training disciplines. It delivers global support for fielded F-35s while preparing for future force expansion.

For example, when the Autonomic Logistics Information System, or ALIS, recognizes that an F-35 requires a part replacement, HPSI locates and ships the part to the unit.

“The men and women at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base perform critical acquisition missions supporting our national defense,” Brown said. “Secretary Wilson recognized that the base, and the greater Dayton area, provide a unique environment to enable our servicemembers and civilians to continue meeting our national security needs. This mission will continue to grow the critical acquisition and technical expertise in the Miami Valley.”

The combination of government and industry professionals working collaboratively will ensure HPSI has a performance-based focus on F-35 fleet users, while driving down costs.

“This is an important step in driving sustainment costs down as more of our allies and partners join us,” said Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David L. Goldfein. “I continue to hear from my fellow air chiefs that they are not integrating the F-35 into their Air Force. They are integrating their Air Force into the F-35. Product support integration ensures this quarterback of the joint team has everything in the locker room needed to hit the field and win.”

The Air Force will now conduct the requisite environmental analysis. The final basing decision will be made by the secretary of the Air Force after the analysis is complete.

Submitted photo A formation of F-35 Lightning IIs from the 388th Fighter Wing and 419th FW stationed at Hill Air Force Base, Utah, perform aerial maneuvers during as part of a combat power exercise over Utah Test and Training Range.
https://www.fairborndailyherald.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/50/2018/12/web1_181119-F-WJ663-9926.jpgSubmitted photo A formation of F-35 Lightning IIs from the 388th Fighter Wing and 419th FW stationed at Hill Air Force Base, Utah, perform aerial maneuvers during as part of a combat power exercise over Utah Test and Training Range.