Military Aviation

Pentagon to Replace F-35 ALIS Logistic System with ODIN

ALIS logistic system was blamed for delaying aircraft maintenance, one of the very things it was meant to facilitate.

The Pentagon announced on Jan. 16, 2020 that will go ahead with replacing the buggy Autonomic Logistics Information System (ALIS) for the F-35 with the new Operational Data Integrated Network (ODIN) from Lockheed Martin.

The new system will be in place by December 2022 except on F-35s that are deployed remotely or on ships.

ALIS (which has been plagued by delays) was designed to give F-35 Lightning II operators the ability to plan ahead, to maintain, to plan and sustain its systems over the life of the air vehicle. 

Developed to integrate a broad range of capabilities including operations, maintenance, prognostics, supply chain, customer support services, training and technical data, ALIS should have been a single, secure information environment to provide users with up-to-date information on any of these areas using web-enabled applications on a distributed network.

According to Ellen Lord, the Pentagon’s chief weapon’s buyer, ODIN will be streamlined for efficiency “with the voice of the maintainer and the pilots at the forefront of the requirements list.”

Lord told Reuters outside a closed-door briefing to U.S. Congress that Lockheed Martin, the F-35’s prime contractor, would work on ODIN under the current ALIS funding profile without additional cost to the taxpayer.

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ALIS would have cost more than $16.7 billion over its multi-decade “life cycle,” the Government Accountability Office (GAO) estimated.

ALIS was blamed for delaying aircraft maintenance, one of the very things it was meant to facilitate.

“One Air Force unit estimated that it spent the equivalent of more than 45,000 hours per year performing additional tasks and manual workarounds because ALIS was not functioning as needed,” the GAO said in a November report.

According to Lord, ODIN will be based in the cloud and designed to deliver data in near real time on aircraft and system performance under heightened cyber security provisions.

“We have heard our maintainers on the flight lines loud and clear when they say they want to spend less time on administrative maintenance on ALIS,” she said.

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U.S. Air Force photo/Paul Holcomb

Dario Leone

Dario Leone is an aviation, defense and military writer. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviation Geek Club” one of the world’s most read military aviation blogs. His writing has appeared in The National Interest and other news media. He has reported from Europe and flown Super Puma and Cougar helicopters with the Swiss Air Force.

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