Dec. 28 (UPI) -- The U.S. Navy awarded a roughly $712.5 million order to Lockheed Martin for the company's work on the F-35 Lightning II stealth fighter.
The order, tacked onto an existing agreement, will fund Lockheed Martin's development of the aircraft's Technology Refresh 3 System, which will update the computer systems on board the F-35 Lightning II, the U.S. Defense Department announced Thursday.
Lockheed Martin's work on the system, also called the TR3, will include design efforts through the fleet release stage. Work will take place in Fort Worth, Texas, and is expected to be finished by March 2023.
The F-35, across three different variants, is a fifth-generation fighter expected to replace much of the air fleet for the U.S. Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps.
The United States and its allies are expected to purchase thousands of F-35s.
A total $207.1 million in fiscal 2018 and 2019 research, development, test and evaluation funds from the Navy and Marine Corps and funds from non-U.S. Department of Defense entities will be obligated at the time of the award.