The U.S. State Department announced on Thursday that it approved the possible sale of 105 Lockheed Martin F-35s to Japan at an estimated cost of $23 billion. 63 of the aircraft involved in the sale are F-35As and 42 are F-35Bs. The difference between the A model and the B model is that the A is a CTOL version (Conventional take-off and landing) whereas the B is a STOVL version (Short take-off and vertical landing). F-35s are being made at Lockheed Martin’s Fort Worth factory in Texas (but allies assemble aircraft themselves at 2 final assembly and check-out facilities in Japan and Italy) and are projected to serve with air forces around the world till 2070. In March, the Pentagon announced that Mitsubishi Heavy Industries would close down the Japanese final assembly plant due to the coronavirus. 11th July 2020.