The first 737-700 aircraft for Turkey's Peace Eagle airborne early warning and control program rolled off the Boeing [NYSE: BA] production line in Renton, Wash. this week.
Following the completion of delivery and flight test activities, the plane will fly to Delaware in December for installation of auxiliary fuel tanks. It will then fly back to Seattle where crews will modify the plane at the Boeing Military Flight Center.
The modifications include installation of a reinforced fuselage section that will hold the Multi-role Electronically Scanned Array radar. Provisions for the other mission system equipment will be installed and tested, with first flight scheduled for late 2006.
The contract calls for four 737 AEW&C aircraft, options for two more plus a ground-support segment for mission crew training, mission support and system maintenance support
While modifications of the first aircraft will be made in Seattle, the other three aircraft will be completed by TAI in Turkey. Delivery of the first two 737 AEW&C aircraft is planned for 2007, with the other two aircraft scheduled for delivery in 2008.
The international Boeing-led team responsible for the program includes Northrop Grumman Electronic Systems and several major Turkish companies, including Aselsan, Havelsan, MSKAS, MIKES,TAI and THY.
A unit of The Boeing Company, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is one of the world's largest space and defense businesses. Headquartered in St. Louis, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is a $27 billion business. It provides network-centric system solutions to its global military, government, and commercial customers. It is a leading provider of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance systems; the world's largest military aircraft manufacturer; the world's largest satellite manufacturer and a leading provider of space-based communications; the primary systems integrator for U.S. missile defense andDepartment of Homeland Security; NASA's largest contractor; and a global leader in launch services.