Ending F-22A Production

Costs and Industrial Base Implications of Alternative Options

by Obaid Younossi, Kevin Brancato, John C. Graser, Thomas Light, Rena Rudavsky, Jerry M. Sollinger

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Abstract

In April 2009, the Department of Defense decided to terminate production of the F-22A Raptor and close the production line after the last aircraft delivery. In advance of the decision, the Air Force asked RAND Project AIR FORCE to identify the costs and implications of various shutdown options on the industrial base. Because the F-22A manufacturing base is complex, shutting down the production line without making any investment in preserving key elements of production capability would make it expensive and difficult to restart production in the future, if that were desired. This monograph evaluates the implications of three shutdown options for the F-22A industrial capability: shutdown; shutdown and restart; and “warm” production, in which a small number of aircraft are produced until and if a decision is made to return to full-rate production. Issues such as the availability of skilled labor, processes, facilities, and tooling used by firms supporting F-22A production, are likely to affect some suppliers.

Table of Contents

  • Chapter One

    Introduction

  • Chapter Two

    Shutdown and Restart Cost Estimates

  • Chapter Three

    Production Cost Estimate

  • Chapter Four

    Sustainment, Modernization, Technical Data Package, and Contract Closeout

  • Chapter Five

    The Effect of the Production Gap on Vendors

  • Chapter Six

    Summary and Policy Options for the Air Force

  • Appendix A

    Vendor Assessments

  • Appendix B

    Previous RAND Research on Shutdown and Restart

  • Appendix C

    Original and Restart Learning Curve Slopes

The research reported here was sponsored by the United States Air Force and conducted by RAND Project AIR FORCE.

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