ap3c oRION

StandardAero has been awarded a contract to maintain the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) AP-3C Orion aircraft fleet’s propulsion system.

Signed in collaboration with Airbus Group Australia Pacific, the $42m contract covers the provision of full overhaul and repair services for all of the associated systems, including logistical, inventory and fleet management support.

The AP-3C propulsion system features the Rolls-Royce T56A-14 engine, Lockheed Martin P-3 quick engine change (QEC) assembly, Hamilton Sundstrand 54H60 propeller, and the Honeywell GTCP 95-3 auxiliary power unit (APU).

StandardAero also received a $104m contract this year to provide through-life support (TLS) for propulsion systems that power RAAF’s C-130J aircraft fleet for a period of five years.

The contract includes sustainment services for the Rolls-Royce AE2100D3 engines, the C-130J QEC assembly, GE-Dowty’s R-391 propellers, APUs and associated accessories and technical support.

Australian Defence Materiel Organisation Aerospace Systems Division head air vice-marshal Leigh Gordon said: "The C-130J contract generates more than 25% savings from our 2010 Strategic reform baseline, and StandardAero and Defence are already achieving the world’s best practice for C-130J QEC time on wing having recently exceeded 5,000 hours.

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"The Commonwealth and StandardAero have worked together to realise additional efficiencies and cost savings from these propulsion system contracts."

"We look forward to similar excellence from StandardAero and Airbus Group supporting our AP-3C fleet."

StandardAero Defence Services vice-president Fritz Wolkenstein said: "The Commonwealth and StandardAero have worked together to realise additional efficiencies and cost savings from these propulsion system contracts."

Commenting on collaboration with Airbus Group Australia Pacific, Wolkenstein said: "Our companies have close alignment in terms of business practices and focus on customer needs and together we are able to offer the Commonwealth much greater savings due to the optimisation of maintenance services across both the airframe and the propulsion system."

Intermediate level support services under the new contract would be delivered from facilities at both RAAF Base Edinburgh and RAAF Base Richmond, while depot support for the engine and propeller will be provided from StandardAero’s facility in Winnipeg, Canada.

The contracts could also be extended, offering the company the potential to continue the services until the RAAF’s planned retirement of the Orion fleet in 2020 and the C-130J Super Hercules fleet in 2030.

Image: A RAAF AP-3C Orion aircraft in flight over Darwin Airport, Australia. Photo: courtesy of Eugene Butler.

Defence Technology