Thu, Sep 04, 2008
First Deliveries Expected In 2010
It's a significant -- and needed -- advance for an aging
workhorse. Lockheed Martin announced Thursday it has won a $129.3
million contract to build a total of 13 new outer wing sets for the
US Navy's fleet of venerable P-3 Orion reconnaissance planes. The
all new production outer wings will be delivered to the Navy
beginning in early 2010 for installation on selected aircraft.
"Lockheed Martin has a long, proud history of providing P-3
sustainment and support to the US Navy," said Ray Burick, Lockheed
Martin vice president of P-3/S-3 programs. "This new wing order is
the next step in that partnership."
Lockheed Martin's P-3 wing production line opened in March 2008
and is the cornerstone of the company's P-3 Aircraft Service Life
Extension Program (ASLEP). Lockheed Martin currently has the Royal
Norwegian Air Force and the US Customs and Border Protection
Service under contract for P-3 Life Extension Kits, and has
submitted a response to the Canadian Forces under a Request For
Proposal. A proposal for the Taiwan P-3 fleet is also in work.
"As the P-3 Orion original equipment manufacturer, Lockheed
Martin is uniquely qualified to sustain and support the world's P-3
leets," said Burick. "Aside from the operators of these aircraft,
nobody knows the P-3 better than Lockheed Martin."
The complete ASLEP solution replaces the aircraft outer wings,
center wing lower section and horizontal stabilizers with new
production components. All fatigue-life limiting structures on the
aircraft are replaced with enhanced-design components and improved
corrosion-resistant materials that will greatly reduce maintenance
costs over the aircraft's service life.
"Lockheed Martin is committed to providing a range of solutions
that enables operational effectiveness for P-3 Orion operators
worldwide for decades to come," said Burick. "We're fully prepared
to support the US Navy and all our customers in their future
maritime surveillance activities."
The Boeing P-8A Poseidon, expected to replace the Orions, isn't
expected to enter service until 2013. The Navy will receive its
first of five test P-8As in 2009.
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