Lockheed CEO Hewson sees deals for next F-35 jets in 1st half

WASHINGTON Thu Jan 24, 2013 7:22am EST

WASHINGTON Jan 24 (Reuters) - Lockheed Martin Corp Chief Executive Marillyn Hewson said the company's F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program was progressing "very well" and she expected to finalize agreements for sixth and seventh production orders with the Pentagon in the first half of 2013.

Hewson said the F-35 fighter uses similar lithium-ion batteries as those being investigated on Boeing Co's 787 Dreamliner, but they were made by a different manufacturer and had been tested and vetted extensively.

She said investigators were still trying to determine what caused a problem that prompted the Pentagon to ground the U.S. Marine Corps variant of the F-35 last week.

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California state worker Albert Jagow (L) goes over his retirement options with Calpers Retirement Program Specialist JeanAnn Kirkpatrick at the Calpers regional office in Sacramento, California October 21, 2009. Calpers, the largest U.S. public pension fund, manages retirement benefits for more than 1.6 million people, with assets comparable in value to the entire GDP of Israel. The Calpers investment portfolio had a historic drop in value, going from a peak of $250 billion in the fall of 2007 to $167 billion in March 2009, a loss of about a third during that period. It is now around $200 billion. REUTERS/Max Whittaker   (UNITED STATES) - RTXPWOZ

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