Monday, January 30, 2017

U.S. Air Force Awards Boeing Third KC-46 Production Contract

The U.S. Air Force on January 27 awarded Boeing a third low-rate initial production (LRIP) contract for KC-46A tankers. LRIP lot 3, valued at $2.1 billion, calls for the delivery of 15 aircraft, two spare engines and five wing refueling pod kits by July 30, 2019, bringing to 34 the number of production tankers the service has ordered over three lots.

The contract announcement followed Boeing’s release of fourth-quarter 2016 financial results on January 25, indicating that it continues to cope with cost overruns on the tanker program. The manufacturer declared $312 million in pre-tax charges related to the 767 military derivative.

The largest charge of $243 million, taken from revenue of the Commercial Airplanes division, was attributed to “additional effort to incorporate previously identified changes into initial production aircraft.” A pre-tax charge of $69 million was taken from revenue of the Defense, Space & Security division.

Under the original engineering and manufacturing development contract it was awarded in 2011, Boeing has built two 767-2C provisioned freighters and two full KC-46 tankers to serve as test aircraft. Those aircraft and the first production tanker have logged nearly 1,500 flight hours to date, the manufacturer said.

The LRIP Lot 3 award “is great news for the joint Boeing-Air Force team and reinforces the need for this highly efficient and capable tanker aircraft,” said Mike Gibbons, Boeing’s KC-46A tanker vice president and program manager. “Our Boeing industry team is hard at work building and testing KC-46 aircraft, and we look forward to first delivery.”

(Bill Carey - AINOnline News)

No comments: