Northrop Grumman has secured a contract to continue sustainment of the US Air Force’s (USAF) E-8C joint surveillance target attack radar system (Joint STARS) fleet.
The agreement is valued at $210m. It is a continuation of Northrop’s Joint STARS sustainment contract, which was initially awarded in 2000.
Under the deal, the company will be responsible for the logistics, engineering, training, mission support, supply chain and depot maintenance support of the Joint STARS fleet at Robins Air Force Base, Georgia, as well as forward operating locations across the world.
Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems Manned C2ISR programmes director Bryan Lima said: "Since 2000, our team has ensured that Joint STARS remains ready to support the high level of demand from combatant commanders.
"As the Air Force looks toward the future of Joint STARS, Northrop Grumman has the knowledge, experience and infrastructure to provide the greatest value in meeting the Air Force’s battle management, command and control requirements now, and in the future."
The contract also covers the provision of sustainment work at the Northrop Grumman Manned Aircraft Design Center of Excellence in Melbourne, the Lake Charles Maintenance and Modification Center, Louisiana, as well as more than 30 major suppliers across the US.
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A derivative of Boeing’s 707-300 series commercial airliner, the E-8C Joint STARS conducts ground surveillance to help commanders develop an understanding of the enemy situation, while simultaneously transmitting target locations to aircraft and ground strike forces.
The long-range, airborne battle management and command-and-control platform uses the AN/APY-7 multimode side-looking radar for detection, tracking and classification of moving ground vehicles in all-weather conditions from standoff distances.
Since 1991, the aircraft has been deployed in support of several US military missions, including the Operation Desert Storm, as well as for peacekeeping operations in Bosnia-Herzegovina and during the Kosovo crisis, among others.
Image: A USAF E-8C Joint STARS aircraft during a flight over Edwards Air Force Base, California, US. Photo: courtesy of US Air Force.