$230.5M in Contracts to Keep P-3 Fleet Flying

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In an earlier DID article, we noted the extra effort required to preserve the USA's P-3C Orion maritime surveillance & patrol aircraft in light of airframes that were wearing out, coupled increased demand for plane that includes weapons upgrade and even overland operations in Kosovo and Afghanistan. Its 737-based successor the P-8A MMA, which DID has also covered, will not begin to enter service until 2010 at the earliest, and UAV supplementation via Global Hawk or a successor system like the BAMS is still at least a couple of years away. In line with these efforts to preserve and upgrade the USA's shrinking P-3C fleet, the U.S. Naval Air Systems Command in Patuxent River, MD has issued a number of contracts with a total value is $230.5 million.

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