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First French AWACS mid-life upgrade complete

18th February 2014 - 10:14 GMT | by The Shephard News Team


Mid-life upgrade work on the first E-3F Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS) aircraft in the French Air Force fleet has been completed by Boeing and Air France Industries KLM Engineering & Maintenance (AFI KLM E&M). The aircraft now will undergo ground and flight tests at Avord Air Base before qualification by the DGA and delivery to the air force.

Four E-3F AWACS aircraft are to undergo the modifications, which are being conducted under a foreign military sale between the French DGA and the US government.

Modelled on the Block 40/45 contract developed for the US AWACS fleet, this is the largest ever upgrade to be conducted on the French fleet. The work will see upgrades to the electrical, mechanical and structural systems and mission hardware carried out, delivering an improved picture of the battlespace and more actionable information. Aircrew workload will also be reduced.

Steve Swanz, Boeing's French AWACS program manager, said: ‘The Mid-Life Upgrade capability of this airborne surveillance, command and control platform is unrivalled. The excellent relationship of the French government, US government, and Boeing French AWACS teams has enabled completion of this modification milestone and the outstanding performance by AFI KLM E&M and our Boeing in-country team exemplifies our commitment to excellence in product and relationships.’

The first upgrade was conducted at the AFI KLM E&M site at Le Bourget Airport near Paris; the three remaining aircraft will be upgraded in a new facility owned by AFI KLM E&M at Charles De Gaulle Airport in Paris. 

The Shephard News Team


The Shephard News Team

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