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The last F-22A aircraft is scheduled for delivery in early 2012. The Air Force plans to continue contracts that provide for F-22A modernization and sustainment work but not those that provide for new production. As the last F-22A component is fabricated, assembled, or integrated at each of the many facilities involved in producing the aircraft, decisions must be made as to what tooling will be retained and what tooling will be disposed of. In this report, the authors estimate (1) how much more it would cost to retain all the F-22A unique government tooling required for a future production restart than to retain only the tooling required for sustainment support and (2) how much it would cost to restart production at some future date.

Based on a plan to preserve tooling using containers for storage, the authors calculate the difference in cost between retaining all and retaining only some of the tooling. They find that, for a modest, one-time additional cost of $17 million and a very small additional annual recurring cost, the Air Force can retain all F-22A unique government tools. The authors also find a difference of less than $1 billion between the costs of two different restart options.

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The research described in this report was sponsored by the United States Air Force and conducted by RAND Project AIR FORCE.

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