CANBERRA, Australia, Aug. 27 (UPI) -- Australia's Lovitt Technologies has produced the first locally made component for the first F-35 Joint Strike Fighter the country will receive.
The precision component is part of the structure that attaches the aircraft's wings to its fuselage and will be shipped to Lockheed Martin in Fort Worth, Texas, said Minister for Defense Materiel Jason Clare.
"It leaves as a part and comes back as a plane -- one of the most advanced fighter planes in the world," Clare said.
"Australian companies have been manufacturing parts for Joint Strike Fighters for 10 years but these are the first major parts that have been made for an Australian Joint Strike Fighter," he said.
"This is an important day for Lovitt Technologies and dozens of other Australian companies that are currently involved in the production of the Joint Strike Fighter."
Australia is to receive its first F-35 in 2018, the Australian Defense Department said.