Defence giant BAE Systems will today open a new manufacturing facility at one of its UK sites, marking another milestone in production of the F-35 military jet.
The company said its site at Samlesbury in Lancashire will be extended under a £150 million investment programme which will enable workers to produce a fuselage set every day compared to the current rate of one a week.
Chris Allam, Senior Vice President on the F-35 programme, said: "The facility opening is an exciting development in the F-35 story at Samlesbury.
"F-35 is an important programme for BAE Systems and the capabilities that this facility provides are equal to anywhere in the world.
"We're using state-of-the-art machines and manufacturing techniques to ensure we can meet the rates of production that the F-35 programme demands."
Martin Wright, Chairman for the North West Aerospace Alliance, added "The F-35 programme is the largest defence project in the world and through BAE Systems will be the backbone of stability to our regional industry through those companies successful in winning F-35 contracts.
"This facility is state of the art, somewhere in which our young people will want to work, to build knowledge, create jobs and secure the future of this magnificent industry of ours."
Over the past 10 years BAE Systems has made significant investment in the F-35 programme including a new titanium machining facility which opened in 2010, a new office building and now the newly extended manufacturing facility, with around 1,000 workers based in the three buildings.