USS Nitze Sails Into Waters Off Coast Of Venezuela | UK Renews GECO Mission Support For Puma | China Launches Final BeiDou Satellite
Lockheed Martin won a $22.4 million contract modification, which exercises options to procure 12 retrofit advanced radar processor systems for the E-2D Advanced Hawkeye aircraft. The E-2D Advanced Hawkeye has a new radar system, theater missile defense capabilities, multi-sensor integration and a Northrop Grumman Navigation Systems tactical glass cockpit. Work will take place Liverpool, New York and Andover, Massachusetts. Estimated completion date is in November 2023.
The USS Nitze sailed into contested waters off the coast of Venezuela Tuesday in what the Navy describes as a “freedom of navigation operation” contesting “an excessive maritime claim” by Venezuela. The Arleigh Burke Class guided missile destroyer conducted the operation outside of Venezuela’s 12-nautical-mile territorial jurisdiction, an area the Maduro regime claims control over. “The US Navy routinely conducts freedom of navigation operations around the world to preserve the maritime navigation and access rights guaranteed to all nations and vital to the global mobility of US forces,” said the Navy’s press release on the operation.
Middle East & Africa
Advanced Electronics won a $12.4 million modification, which provides for implementation and delivery of end-user training for the CPS for two years. The scope of this contract effort will include custom contractor-developed training and original equipment manufacturer training. This is a Foreign Military Sales (FMS) acquisition between the US government and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. This FMS is for the total package of acquisition and fielding of 84 F-15A aircraft; the upgrade of 70 F-15SA aircraft to the F-154SA configuration; the procurement of associated equipment, weapons and spares; and the construction, refurbishment and infrastructure improvements of support facilities for the F-15SA in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The F-15 Eagle is an all-weather, extremely maneuverable, tactical fighter aircraft designed to outperform and outfight enemy aircraft obtaining air supremacy for the US Air Force. The Royal Saudi Air Force (RSAF) F-15SA is an advanced fighter jet aircraft version of the F-15E Strike Eagle featuring state-of-the-art sensors and a wide range of guided and smart munitions.
The United Kingdom has renewed for a further five years its Graphical Electronic Cockpit Organizer (GECO) Mission Support System (GECO MSS) contract for the Royal Air Force (RAF’s) Puma Force. This contract extension with Joint Helicopter Command (JHC) will see RAF Benson’s 33 and 230 squadrons equipped with the system until 2025, with the Westland-Aerospatiale SA 330E Puma HC2 fleet using GECO MSS on all flying operations in the UK and internationally. GECO Air, as the system is known in its airborne configuration, is designed to complement an aircraft’s existing onboard avionics systems by bringing commercial off-the-shelf hardware technology to the cockpit.
Boeing won an $8.5 million deal for the Japan Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS) mission computing upgrade (MCU) installation and checkout (I&CO) and Automatic Dependent Surveillance Broadcast Out (ADS-B Out). The contract modification is to upgrade its fleet of four aircraft with the ADS-B Out capability. ADS-B Out is a software and hardware update to the Raytheon APX-119 transponder that includes the addition of a Global Positioning System (GPS) card. Under the E-767 AWACS I&CO program, the GPS card is to be installed within the four aircraft and updating the three ground support facilities. Work will take place in Oklahoma, Texas, and Japan. Expected completion date is December 23, 2023.
The final satellite required to complete global coverage of China’s BeiDou satellite navigation system was launched on June 23 from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center aboard a Long March 3B three-stage carrier rocket, achieving its intended orbit. The previous launch of a Long March 3B in April had ended in failure due to a malfunction of the rocket’s third stage. Moreover, the first launch of the Long March 7A, which has some commonality with the Long March 3B in its third stage, had also malfunctioned after launch on March 16.
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