Delivering the pole model on time to Eglin AFB apparently doesn't count (photo courtesy USAF).
Lockheed Martin can earn a $52.5 million extra pay-day this year on the F-35 program, chief executive Robert Stevens told Wall Street analysts on Tuesday. That may seem like chump-change compared to the roughly $11.4 billion in the Fiscal 2011 budget for F-35, but these days a defense contractor will gladly take anything it can get.
The list also helps clarify what the F-35 joint program office thinks are some of the most important objectives for the struggling program to achieve this year.
1. Complete all structural testing = $10.5 million
2. Complete carrier suitability tests on F-35C = $10.5 million
3. Start sea trials for the F-35B short take-off and vertical landing variant = $10.5 million
4. Release Block 1 software training update to Eglin AFB = $10.5 million
5. Release Block 2 software to flight test program = $10.5 million
Last week, F-35 executive Vice Adm David Venlet revealed that Lockheed missed on four of five milestones worth $7 million each last year. The remaining $28 million in the bonus budget last year is lost forever.
Venlet's bonus plan comes from the $614 million award fee withheld from Lockheed in February last year. The fund was broken into annual lots of milestone-based incentive bonuses that increase in value each year.