NATO takes first steps beyond AWACS
The NATO Support and Procurement Agency (NSPA) has awarded six contracts as it plans for the follow-on capability to the NATO AWACS fleet.
Contracts went to the Boeing-ABILITI Consortium (US), General Atomics (US), Lockheed Martin (US), Airbus (Germany), L3Harris Consortium (UK) and MDA (Canada) following an international bidding process.
NATO’s E-3A AWACS fleet is set to retire in 2035, after 50 years of service. To plan for the required follow-on capability, NATO's Alliance Future Surveillance and Control (AFSC) project will involve industry at a very early stage to develop new options for future NATO surveillance and control capabilities, based on future technology and requirements.
The concept stage of the AFSC was initiated in 2017. Being managed by the NSPA, work under this phase will include studies and the development of technical concepts that will help inform future decisions by NATO, individual nations or multinational groups to acquire new systems.
Concept development and assessment activities will take place in 2020-2022 timeframe. High-level concepts proposed by the six contractors will be assessed by NATO to identify the most promising concepts for further development and feasibility analysis in a second competition that will be announced later in 2020.
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