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Bell Boeing starts work on Osprey nacelle improvements

24th September 2021 - 14:00 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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CV-22 Ospreys from the USAF 1st Special Operations Wing, pictured in August 2021. (Photo: USAF/Senior Airman Miranda Mahoney)

The USAF is keen to optimise availability of the CV-22 Osprey.

The first USAF CV-22 Osprey tiltrotor aircraft arrived at the Bell Amarillo Assembly Center on 21 September to undergo nacelle improvement modifications.

This is part of an effort by Osprey manufacturer Bell Boeing to increase ‘reliability and maintainability’ of the aircraft for the DoD by increasing readiness rates while driving down sustainment costs, Bell announced on 23 September.

About 60% of maintenance man-hours on the CV-22 are spent in the nacelles.

US Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) awarded Bell Boeing an $81 million contract in December 2020 to complete nacelle improvements on the CV-22 fleet. The contract covers completion of non-recurring elements, fabrication of nine kits, and installation of one kit.

Work on the contract could continue beyond 2025 if NAVAIR exercises options for fabrication and installation.

NAVAIR completed the first flight with nacelle improvements on a USMC MV-22 test aircraft on 23 April 2021 (the MV-22 has an identical nacelle structure to the CV-22).

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