Boeing is working on updating its Block II version of Super Hornet fighters to Block III and is preparing to roll off the production line next year.
“The Navy’s carrier air wing doesn’t need us to be at F-35 level of stealth to perform the missions the carrier air wing has to do. The Navy needs an F-18 to stay on station longer, deliver more weapons and be better integrated into the Naval Integrated Fire Control-Counter Air (NIFC-CA) system,” Boeing’s F-18 program manager Dan Gillian was quoted as saying by USNI Wednesday.
“They need us to improve our radar cross section and they need us to carry large amounts of ordinance far forward,” Gillian said.
The Block III Super Hornets are slightly stealthier than Block II fighters, will have greater range, ability to carry more weapons on a robust airframe designed to last upto 9,000 flight hours- about a decade longer than the current airframes. The fighters also have superior data processing and communication capabilities than previous versions.
“The Navy has requested funding for new-build Block III planes starting in Fiscal Year 2019.The first new-construction planes would deliver in early 2021,” Gillian said.
Boeing is working on a solution to a vexing problem of networking onboard Block III Super Hornets. Gillian did not elaborate more on the solution.
Perhaps the most visible change to the jets is the location of fuel tanks on Block III Super Hornets. Instead of carrying external drop-tanks as previous versions did, the Block III Super Hornets will have conformal fuel tanks installed behind the cockpit on the jet’s shoulders. These hold slightly less fuel, but because they are lighter and make the jet more aerodynamic the end result is an increased range of about 129 nautical miles, Gillian said.
Boeing has been awarded a $22 million worth contract to provide engineering services in support of F/A-18 Hornet and EA-18G Growler aircraft for the Navy and the government of Australia. The Department of defense announced Friday that under the awarded contract, Boeing will procure “the non-recurring engineering required for the redesign of the Data Bus Interface Unit and the Deployable Flight Incident Recorder of the Deployable Flight Incident Recording Set (DFIRS) in support of F/A-18 A-F and EA-18G aircraft”
The Indonesian Army (TNI) received eight Boeing AH-64E Apache attack helicopters in Semarang on Wednesday which had been purchased earlier from the United States under the foreign military sales program. The helicopters were handed over by Defense Minister Ryamizard Ryacudu to TNI Commander`s Logistics Assistant Rear Admiral Bambang Nariyono during a ceremony at the Army Air Force Base at the Ahmad Yani Airport in Semarang
Boeing and Israeli company Assembrix Ltd signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) on Monday that will enable Boeing to use Assembrix software to manage and protect intellectual property shared with vendors during design and manufacturing. "This agreement expands Boeing's ties to Israeli industry while helping companies like Assembrix expand their business," said David Ivry, president, Boeing Israel
Boeing has been awarded $14 million contract for the production of 266 fuse assemblies for US Air Force air launched missiles. Work is expected to be complete by May 2022, US department of defense said in a statement Thursday
Boeing and Safran have agreed to jointly design, build and service Auxiliary Power Units (APUs), creating better value for customers and for both companies. An APU is an onboard engine that is used to primarily start the main engines and power aircraft systems on the ground and, if necessary, in flight
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