Defense

November 26, 2012

Contract award helps keep BACN airborne

Tags:
Patty Welsh
Hanscom AFB, Mass.


The Space, Aerial and Nuclear Network Division here recently awarded a firm-fixed-price contract to Northrop Grumman Systems Corp. for long-term platform maintenance on four E-11A aircraft.

The current amount awarded is $48 million, which is for a one-year base. There are four one-year options, which could eventually bring the value to $260 million.

The E-11A aircraft are modified Bombardier business jets outfitted with the Battlefield Airborne Communications Node, or BACN, payload that enables interoperability across voice and datalink networks. It also provides beyond-line-of-sight capability and voice and data relay to allow for critical communications between air and ground forces.

In addition to the business jets, BACN is also installed on three Global Hawk remotely piloted aircraft.

“BACN can relay and broadcast a variety of information and is currently being used very effectively by warfighters throughout the theater of operations,” said Maj. Bill Holl, program manager. “By awarding this contract we can ensure continued maintenance is performed on the E-11A aircraft to keep this crucial capability available to the war fighters.”

Program officials expect this work to be complete by February 2018. The contract is in support of the BACN Joint Urgent Operational Need (JUON) and the majority of the performance is expected to be done in Afghanistan to support Operation Enduring Freedom.

“We had a full and open competition, which allowed us to make sure we got the best value for the government and, ultimately, the taxpayer, and also ensures the E-11A aircraft are maintained in the most effective and efficient manner to support tactical communications,” said Holl.
The BACN JUON program began as an Advanced Concept Technology Demonstration in 2006 to meet the challenges associated with operating in mountainous terrain, such as limited line-of-sight. In 2009, it became a Joint Urgent Operational Need program to provide support to Operation Enduring Freedom.

“The BACN program was initiated to provide increased situational awareness for our warfighters by allowing for connectivity between dissimilar systems,” said Holl. “The team continues to look for ways to optimize BACN’s capabilities and provide even more support to the warfighter.”

Since the first aircraft with BACN deployed in 2008, the fleet has flown more than 3,000 missions and 30,000 hours in support of OEF.
“The program office continues to receive praise from warfighters and commanders alike saying how BACN is a game changer,” said Holl.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines September 19, 2014

News: McKeon on broader military authorization: Anything can ‘fail or pass’ - Rep. Howard “Buck” McKeon, R-Calif., chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, said if Congress returns after the midterm elections to weigh a broader military authorization for the battle against Islamic State, it might not pass. Defense contractor gets 7 years for giving secrets...
 
 

News Briefs September 19, 2014

U.S. military deaths in Afghanistan at 2,203 As of Sept. 16, 2014, at least 2,203 members of the U.S. military had died in Afghanistan as a result of the U.S.-led invasion of Afghanistan in late 2001, according to an Associated Press count. At least 1,823 military service members have died in Afghanistan as a result...
 
 

Pratt & Whitney, U.S. Air Force complete qualification for F135 engine testing

Pratt & Whitney, a United Technologies Corp. , together with its U.S. Air Force partner at the F135 Heavy Maintenance Center at Tinker Air Force Base, Okla., celebrated another significant milestone qualification for F135 engine testing at the Oklahoma City Air Logistics Complex. OC-ALC which in addition to engine testing is also qualified to perform...
 

 
Navy photograph

Triton has first cross-country flight from Palmdale

Northrop Grumman photograph The MQ-4C Triton Unmanned Aircraft System takes off from Northrop Grummanís Palmdale, Calif., facility Sept. 17 for its first cross-country flight to Naval Air Station Patuxent, River, Md. PALMDALE,...
 
 
Air Force photograph by Michael J. Pausic

Future of NATO: Adapting to a new security environment

Air Force photograph by Michael J. Pausic Gen. Phillip Breedlove informs the assembled crowd about the results of the recent NATO Summit and the areas of instability that affect Europe that have regional implications. Seated in...
 
 
Air Force photograph by Scott M. Ash

AFRL commander describes Air Force’s technology vision

Air Force photograph by Scott M. Ash Maj. Gen. Thomas Masiello takes a question from an audience member after discussing Air Force Research Laboratory breakthrough technologies during the 2014 Air Force Association’s Air ...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>