L-3 Vertex Aerospace LLC in Madison, MS received a $27 million indefinite-delivery/ indefinite-quantity contract for logistics services in support of the E-6B Mercury fleet (aka. TACAMO, as in TAke Charge And Move Out). With the exercise of four, one-year options, the total value of the contract could reach $142.3 million.
Services will be provided to the Commander, Strategic Communications Wing ONE (CSCW-1), and three TACAMO squadrons at Tinker Air Force Base, OK (70%). Support for operations will be given at Travis AFB, CA (10%); Naval Air Station (NAS) Patuxent River, MD, including the Systems Integration Lab (10%); and Offutt AFB, NB (10%), and are expected to be complete in October 2006. This contract was competitively procured via an electronic request for proposals; one offer was received by the Naval Air Systems Command in Patuxent River, MD (N00019-06-D-0011). Sources: DefenseLINK, L-3 corporate release.
See DID’s FOCUS Article on the E-6 Program. These “survivable airborne communication system” airplanes support the US Navy’s SSBN ballistic missile submarine force and overall strategic forces. With the advent of the new “Tactical Trident” converted Ohio Class special operations subs, their unique capabilities become even more useful. The E-6B version also has a secondary role as a “Looking Glass” Airborne National Command Post.
N.B. A minor typo in transcription led DID to report originally on the EA-6B, which is the Prowler electronic warfare aircraft. DID salutes reader Robert Frost of the VQ-4 “Shadows” for catching the error, and sending us the improved TACAMO picture.