This week, the Norwegian Minister of Defence, Bjørn Arild Gram, visited Kongsberg Aviation Maintenance Services (KAMS) at the Rygge engine depot. This was the Minister’s first visit to the maintenance, repair, overhaul and upgrade (MRO&U) facility for the Pratt & Whitney F-135 engine.

Hosted by the Presidents from KONGSBERG, Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace and KAMS; Geir Håøy, Eirik Lie and Atle Wøllo, together with KAMS’ F-135 Program Director Thomas Lerøy, the Minister and his delegation were introduced to the impressive depot facilities and engine test cells, located just south of Oslo.

The F-135 depot at Rygge is the result of collaboration between the Norwegian Ministry of Defence, the F-35 Joint Program Office, KONGSBERG and Pratt & Whitney. It  is the second fully operational F135 engine depot outside of the United States. The F-135 is the engine which powers all three variants of the 5th Generation F-35 Lightning II fighter aircraft. The facility is tailored to support the MRO&U work and testing of the F135 engine, and has the capacity to support multiple repairs, overhauls and logistic services, including handling of spare parts.

Photo: Geir Håøy (CEO KONGSBERG), Bjørn Arild Gram (Norwegian Minister of Defence). Credit: Njål Frilseth

Previously owned by the Ministry of Defence, KAMS was acquired by KONGSBERG and the Finnish company Patria in 2019, aiming to make it a world class maintenance, repair, overhaul provider. Since then, the depot at Rygge has performed well above expectations.

“It was a pleasure to welcome the Minister of Defence and his delegation to our MRO&U facility for the first time. Visits like this make me very proud as we have an opportunity to present our brilliant teams and solutions. I want to commend our employees at Rygge. They have established a highly competent and leading technical environment, delivering great accomplishments as a trustworthy partner supporting the F-35 program”, says Eirik Lie, President of Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace.

KAMS has extensive experience in maintaining engines for a wide range of both aircraft and helicopters, with capabilities within F-35 and Fixed Wing Aircraft Maintenance, F-135 engines, helicopter maintenance and other services.

A total of 400 people are currently working in KAMS across their facilities located at Kjeller, Bardufoss and Rygge, and along with the rest of Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace, KAMS is also preparing for a higher workload and expansion of their workforce.  The depot facility is designed with expansion in mind to accommodate future work and other business opportunities.