BETHPAGE, N.Y., 19 July 2013. Officials at the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) approved the E-2D Advanced Hawkeye, designed and manufactured by Northrop Grumman Corp. (NYSE:NOC), to enter full-rate production.
"Our Navy and Northrop Grumman team continues to deliver on our promises," says Capt. John S. Lemmon, E-2/C-2 Airborne Tactical Data System Program Office (PMA-231) program manager. "I'm confident we will meet our ultimate goal to provide a capable and ready fleet with E-2Ds as we prepare for the first deployment in 2015."
"With the Navy's E-2D program of record at 75 aircraft, this decision by OSD enables the production of the remaining 55 aircraft over the next 10 years and provides the opportunity for a cost-effective, multiyear procurement," says Bart LaGrone, vice president, E-2/C-2 programs, Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems. "The entire Northrop Grumman-led E-2D industry team remains focused on providing the most capable and cost-effective airborne early warning and command and control solution to our customer."
This decision follows a report where the E-2D was declared operationally suitable and effective, after the U.S. Navy conducted a 10-month initial operational test and evaluation (IOT&E). The U.S. Navy's Air Test and Evaluation Squadron One conducted IOT&E, a rigorous phase of testing that every new system undergoes to determine that it is operationally effective and suitable for fleet introduction. The IOT&E is a key factor leading to a full-rate production decision and is a necessary step leading to a multiyear procurement.
"An operationally suitable and effective rating confirms that the E-2D is a mature airborne early warning and battle management, command and control system, capable of providing critical force protection for carrier strike groups and coalition forces," LaGrone adds.
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