WASHINGTON Nov 22 Lockheed Martin Corp
said it had received a boost to a 10-year upgrade contract for
its premier F-22 fighter plane that raised the overall deal's
potential value to $7.4 billion, not a new contract of this
The contract in question, known as the Raptor Enhancement
Development and Integration contract, was issued in 2002, with
nine one-year options, Lockheed spokeswoman Stephanie Stinn
said in an emailed reply to Reuters shortly before midnight on
"The announcement made by the Department of Defense and the
U.S. Air Force last week raises the financial ceiling of this
ten-year contract to $7.4 billion," she said. "This is not a
new contract award funding."
The previous ceiling was not immediately available, and the
Air Force did not immediately respond to a request for comment
The Defense Department had said in its contract digest on
Friday that Lockheed Martin was being awarded a potential $7.4
"indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity" contract for F-22
system upgrades, added capabilities and enhanced performance.
The radar-evading F-22 "Raptor," the costliest and most
advanced U.S. fighter, has been beset with oxygen system
problems and other malfunctions that have grounded the fleet or
parts of it several times since the F-22 entered service in
Stinn said the latest contracting action cleared the way
for funding of further upgrades in 2012, the deal's final year.
The associated sums were requested in President Barack
Obama's fiscal 2012 budget request sent in February to the U.S.
Congress, she said.
The final Raptor is due for delivery next month after
former Defense Secretary Robert Gates persuaded Congress to cap
the fleet at 187 aircraft. The F-22s have never been used in
battle, but have rotated in and out of Kadena Air Base in Japan
and Andersen Air Force Base in Guam