Assessment of Beddown Alternatives for the F-35
RAND PROJECT AIR FORCE ARLINGTON VA
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As currently planned, the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is the largest aircraft acquisition program in the history of the Department of Defense DoD. According to the December 2011 F-35 Selected Acquisition Report DoD, 2011, the total acquisition cost to procure 2,457 F-35 aircraft across the United States Air Force USAF, Navy, and Marine Corps is 331 billion, with total operating and support OS costs of 617 billion to operate the aircraft through 2065 both costs are computed using a base year of 2012. Moreover, the F-35 cost-per-flying-hour estimate has increased by more than 80 percent in constant dollars over the interval 2002 to 2010. To ensure that the affordability of the F-35 program is not threatened by continuing OS cost growth, the USAF is examining alternative strategies to reduce those costs. One approach to reducing OS costs is to reduce the number of F-35 home-station operating locations, which is in turn related to the number of F-35 squadrons and the number of Primary Aerospace Vehicle Authorized PAA per squadron. In December 2011, RAND Project AIR FORCE PAF presented a preliminary analysis to the Director of Logistics, Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Logistics, Installations and Mission Support, Headquarters USAF AFA4L this analysis found that increasing the combat-coded PAA per squadron while maintaining a constant total number of PAA thereby reducing the total number of squadrons could significantly reduce maintenance manpower and support equipment costs. Based upon these findings, the Vice Chief of Staff of the Air Force asked PAF to assess whether savings could be achieved by reconfiguring the USAF s 960 cocombat-coded-35 PAA into larger squadrons i.e., increasing PAA per squadron, by adjusting the PAA mix across the Active Component and Reserve Component, and by adjusting the percentage of Active Component PAA assigned to continental U.S. home-station locations.
- Attack and Fighter Aircraft
- Logistics, Military Facilities and Supplies