The US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) has notified Congress of a potential foreign military sale (FMS) to Kuwait of technical and logistics support for the F/A-18 C/D Hornet strike fighter aircraft.
Under the estimated $200m FMS, Kuwait has requested continuation of logistics support, contractor maintenance, and technical services in support of the F/A-18 C/D aircraft, including avionics software upgrade and engine component improvement services.
The sale also seeks ground support equipment, spare and repair parts, publications and technical documentation, and engineering change proposals, as well as other related elements of logistical support services.
Prime contractors for the FMS programme include General Dynamics (GD), Boeing and Wyle Laboratories.
The single and two-seat variants of F/A-18 Hornet, the F/A-18C and F/A-18D aircraft, feature upgraded radar and avionics, as well as the ability to carry new missiles such as the AIM-120 air-to-air missile (AMRAAM) and AGM-65 Maverick and AGM-84 Harpoon air-to-surface missiles.
Powered by two General Electric F404-GE-402 turbofan engines, F/A-18 Hornet is a multi-role aircraft designed for fighter escorts, suppression of enemy air defences, reconnaissance, forward air control, close air support, along with day and night strike missions.
The aircraft is also capable of converting from air-to-air fighter missions to air-to-ground strike missions while on the same sortie.
Besides participating in military exercises with the air forces of other Gulf countries, Kuwait Air Force’s F/A-18 C/D Hornets were extensively used during Operation Southern Watch over Iraq in the 1990s.
Image: A Kuwaiti Air Force’s KF-18C Hornet aircraft parked on the flight line at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland, US. Photo: Courtesy of PH2 Bruce R. Trombecky.