Huffpost Denver

Ball Aerospace & Technologies Westminster, Colorado Plant To Supply F-35 Lightning II Aircraft Antennas

Posted: Updated:
The Lockheed Martin Joint Strike Fighter is shown after it was unveiled in a ceremony in Fort Worth, Texas, in this July 7, 2006, file photo. To the military and defense firms that make it, the F-35 Lightning II is a "next generation" fighter jet, a technological leap meant to replace several aging fighters and help America maintain its dominance in aerial warfare. (AP Photo/LM Otero) | AP File Photo

BOULDER, Colo. — Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. says its expanded manufacturing center outside Denver will help it supply antennas for the F-35 Lightning II aircraft that Lockheed Martin is building.

Ball held a ribbon-cutting ceremony Wednesday for the plant in Westminster. A $14.6 million expansion project added 28,000 square feet to the original 160,000-square-foot plant.

The antennas Ball is manufacturing will deflect radar energy to help the fighter escape detection.

The company, based in Boulder, says it will build 48,000 of the F-35 antennas for Lockheed Martin under a $677.2 million contract. Ball says it expects to have nearly 200 employees working on the program at full production.