Joint Strike Fighter engine test cell facility upgrade underway

The Minister for Defence, the Hon Christopher Pyne MP, and the Minister for Defence Industry, the Hon Steven Ciobo MP, recently announced that construction has commenced on the $24 million Engine Test Cell upgrade at RAAF Base Amberley in south-east Queensland.

Minister Pyne said the upgraded Engine Test Cell would be used to support Australia’s brand new F-35A Joint Strike Fighter fleet, as well as the existing Super Hornet engines.

“Defence contracted with TAE Aerospace, a 100 per cent Australian-owned company, which has now taken possession of the site and commenced work on the upgraded facility. The facility will be able to cope with the increased 43,000lb thrust of the new F135 engine from the existing 20,000lb thrust of the F414 engine,” Minister Pyne said.

“This important work will ensure Australia’s F-35A fleet, and the global F-35 fleet, will have a highly capable Engine Test Cell facility in the Asia-Pacific region.

“This is another important step in the Government’s goal for Australia to become the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter maintenance hub for the Asia-Pacific.”

Minister Ciobo congratulated TAE Aerospace and said the work would provide opportunities for local industry.

“This is a terrific example of the strength of Australia’s defence industry, which has already won over AU$1.3 billion in production contracts as part of the global F-35 Program,” Minister Ciobo said.

“The new Engine Test Cell work will also benefit the local Queensland economy, with TAE Aerospace entering into a contract with Paynter Dixon Queensland for the construction phase of the project.”

Click here for more information about the Australian F-35A Project.

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