The Commonwealth of Australia has completed its acquisition of six Boeing [NYSE: BA] 737 Airborne Early Warning and Control (AEW&C) aircraft and related mission systems by accepting the final design of the Wedgetail airborne mission segment. The Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) operates the aircraft, which provide Australia with advanced airborne surveillance, communications and battle management.
„Australia has worked closely with Boeing and its industry partners to deliver a world-class Airborne Early Warning and Control capability,” said Air Vice Marshal Chris Deeble, Wedgetail program manager, Defence Materiel Organisation. „The performance of the Wedgetail in recent high-end coalition exercises indicates that we are delivering a cutting-edge warfighting capability to the RAAF.”
„The collaboration between the RAAF, Boeing and our suppliers is proof that a strong government-industry partnership can do great things,” said Rick Heerdt, Boeing vice president and program manager, Airborne Surveillance, Command and Control. „A robust support program is now in place to ensure Wedgetail’s long-term service and success.”
Besides six AEW&C aircraft, the Wedgetail program also includes ground support segments such as the Operational Flight Trainer, Operational Mission Simulator and Mission Support System. All are located in the AEW&C Support Centre at RAAF Base Williamtown in Newcastle.
Boeing completed delivery of four AEW&C aircraft to the Republic of Korea in 2012. Four additional AEW&C aircraft are in production for Turkey.