UK-based Martin-Baker has opened an Australian field office at RAAF Williamtown near Newcastle, the company’s first F-35 capable field office located outside of the US and UK.
The new office has been established to support not only the RAAF’s fleet of F-35As, the first of which is due to arrive at the base in late 2018, but also the new PC-21 advanced trainers, classic Hornets, PC-9 trainers, and Discovery Air’s Dornier Alphas Jets.
Martin-Baker recently signed an agreement with Pilatus to provide MRO services from 2018 for ejection seats and canopies for the growing PC-21 fleet.
“This has always been our plan since day one on this program to have three locations with full JSF seat capability for maintenance, repair, overhaul and upgrade of not just the US16E seat fitted to JSF, but all the support equipment associated with it,” said Andrew Martin, Martin-Baker Aircraft Company’s director of business development and marketing.
“Australia and more specifically Williamtown where the office is opening is an ideal location as it will be a major hub in the JSF network and Australia’s main operating base for JSF.”
Following BAE Systems Australia’s selection earlier this year by the US Joint Strike Fighter Program Office (JPO) to support regional F-35 operators, Martin-Baker’s new Williamtown office further bolster’s that location’s credentials to be a hub for the provision of regional F-35 support services.