Boeing delivered the sixth and final Wedgetail Airborne Early Warning and Control aircraft to the Royal Australian Air Force May 2.
“I would like to congratulate Boeing in achieving another key milestone in the delivery of the Wedgetail capability. 2 Squadron now has a full complement of aircraft and additional capability that will enable Initial Operational Capability to be declared later this year,” said Air Vice-Marshal Chris Deeble, program manager, Collins and Wedgetail, Defence Materiel Organisation.
“Delivering the last aircraft into the Wedgetail fleet is the result of hard work, dedication and collaboration by the Boeing-led team and our Australian customer in bringing this powerful air battle management system – the first of its type – to the RAAF,” said Rick Heerdt, AEW&C vice president for Boeing.
Boeing also has delivered all ground segments to support the fleet, which is based at RAAF Base Williamtown in Newcastle, Australia.
“Through the Australia-based Wedgetail One Team, Boeing is working together with the RAAF AEW&C System Program Office and No. 42 Wing to provide the best value-for-money engineering, maintenance, training and supply support and the highest levels of aircraft availability to meet the RAAF’s operational needs,” said Heerdt.
Based on the Boeing Next-Generation 737-700 commercial airplane, the 737 AEW&C aircraft is designed to provide airborne battle management capability with an advanced multirole electronically scanned radar and 10 state-of-the-art mission crew consoles that are able to track airborne and maritime targets simultaneously. The mission crew can direct offensive and defensive forces while maintaining continuous surveillance of the operational area.
Boeing also has delivered three Peace Eye AEW&C aircraft to the Republic of Korea, with one more scheduled for delivery later this year. Turkey’s first Peace Eagle AEW&C is on plan for delivery by the end of the year.