(03 Jun 2021) Bombardier’s Learjet subsidiary has signed an agreement with the U.S. Air Force in support of the Battlefield Airborne Communications Node (BACN) program.
The Indefinite Delivery Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) contract provides the USAF with flexible ordering and includes an immediate firm order for one Global 6000 aircraft, with as many as five additional Global 6000 aircraft.
The contract, which includes engineering and modification work, is valued at close to US$465 million at current list prices.
Bombardier has already delivered four Global aircraft to the U.S. Air Force since 2007 for the BACN program, an airborne relay that extends communication ranges, bridges between radio frequencies and “translates” among incompatible communications systems.
BACN aircraft are known in the U.S. Air Force as the E-11A.
“Bombardier is proud to be chosen once again by the U.S. Air Force to provide our high-performing Global aircraft and our unique expertise in support of the BACN program,” said Michel Ouellette, Executive Vice President, Specialized Aircraft, Programs and Engineering, Bombardier. “Our U.S.-based employees are honored to be lending their skills in support of this elite project.”
Bombardier teams in the U.S., who continue to provide in-service support and upgrades to the current BACN fleet, are poised to begin work on the next BACN aircraft in the coming days.
Engineers and technicians at Bombardier Specialized Aircraft’s Center of Excellence in Wichita, Kansas, will modify the Global platform to support the communications equipment required for the mission, while teams in Tucson will provide the aircraft’s interior and eventually perform the exterior painting work.
“I’m proud to support the Air Force’s acquisition of additional E-11A BACN aircraft from Bombardier,” said U.S. Representative Ann Kirkpatrick (D-Arizona). “The BACN aircraft fleet connects our warfighters and allies during critical missions and supports highly skilled jobs right here in Tucson at Bombardier’s service center. I look forward to continuing to support the Air Force’s BACN program as a member of the Appropriations Committee.”