The Boeing Company's [NYSE:BA] $133 million contract to upgrade the radar system of France's fleet of four E-3 AWACS aircraft will be the most significant upgrade to the fleet since its delivery in the early 1990s. It also will bring the French surveillance radar capability up to the same standards as their NATO allies.
Mike Brewer, Boeing French AWACS program manager, said, "The Radar System Improvement Program (RSIP) improves the AWACS radar by increasing its sensitivity, boosting the electronic counter-countermeasures capability and improving its reliability."
Brewer added, "The French Air Force continues to appreciate the increasing value of AWACS and this RSIP modification is the latest in a series to its fleet including upgrades to the mission navigation system and installation of Electronic Support Measures."
Boeing, as prime contractor and systems integrator, will ship the modification kits to Air France Industries beginning in the spring of 2004. AFI, under a subcontract with Boeing, will perform the installation and checkout at its facility in Le Bourget, France. Installation is scheduled to be completed in 2006. Boeing will flight-test the upgraded aircraft at the French AWACS Main Operating Base in Avord, France.
The RSIP kits, built principally by Northrop Grumman Electronic Systems, Baltimore, Md., under subcontract with Boeing, consist of a new radar computer, radar control maintenance panel and software upgrades to the radar and mission system programs.
RSIP modifications already have been performed on the United States, United Kingdom and NATO AWACS fleets.
The award is a Foreign Military Sales contract from the Electronic Systems Center, Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass.
Boeing Space and Communications (S&C), headquartered in Seal Beach, Calif., is the world's largest space and communications company. A unit of The Boeing Company, S&C provides integrated solutions in launch services, human space flight and exploration, missile defense, and information and communications. It is NASA's largest contractor; a leading provider of space-based communications; the primary systems integrator for U.S. missile defense; and a leading provider of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance. The global enterprise has customers worldwide and manufacturing operations throughout the United States and Australia.