US Navy plans to increase its $4 billion annual spending for rockets, including new versions of the Trident and the F-35, as the military prepares to buy more than 30 new rocket ships.
US Navy officials said they will soon submit a final cost estimate to Congress for the F35, a $100 million, five-stage rocket jet that is expected to replace the Trident, the aircraft carrier and the aircraft carriers that have been used since the early 1990s.
The decision was expected after a congressional report last week showed the F 35 would cost $400 billion more than the Trident.
The $4.6 billion the Navy has spent on its current fleet of rockets is expected, in addition to $2 billion in upgrades for the USS Enterprise, USS Abraham Lincoln and USS Independence.
The F-15 and F-16 have also been replaced.
The cost of the new F-18 and F/A-18E/F fighter jets will be determined after Congress approves an appropriation for the Pentagon.
The Navy has said it is in talks with Lockheed Martin Corp. about building the first of the F/AE-18 fighters.
The new F/As will be capable of carrying up to three F-22 Raptor aircraft, a fighter with a wing span of 8.8 feet, according to Lockheed.
Lockheed Martin has been developing the F+18 since 2002.
In a presentation to the House Armed Services Committee on Wednesday, Vice Adm.
Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said the F 36 fighter will provide “significant operational flexibility” to the Navy.
The Pentagon is expected make a decision on the F36 by June 30.
It has been a year since Congress approved a budget for the next fiscal year, and the Pentagon is in the process of filling two vacancies, which it says will cost the Pentagon $6.9 billion.
It is also preparing to spend $10 billion to buy four new F35s, the largest contract for the aircraft since the service bought more than 100 of the planes from Lockheed in 2011.
In the same presentation, Mullen said the Navy will purchase a “small number” of F/AF-18Es and F 36s, but he declined to give a price.
Lockheed will continue to make the F18E and F36 for the Navy, but it will now make the planes only in the United States.
The company also has plans to buy three of the Lockheed F-17 fighter jets.
The Lockheed F/B-17 is the most modern aircraft in the F.A.Q. fleet and is a highly maneuverable jet with a range of over 3,000 nautical miles, which allows it to strike targets up to 1,400 miles away.
The stealth fighter is also able to attack enemy fighters using a variety of sensors and weapons, including laser-guided bombs and precision-guided munitions.
The plane is also capable of being stealthy when flying from the air, and is capable of flying over land for extended periods of time.
The aircraft is capable to carry up to 10 people.