07 Juli 2011
RAAF's Hawk 127 Lead-In Fighter Trainer (photo : redbubble)
Minister for Defence Materiel Jason Clare today announced a two-year extension of the contract with BAE Systems Australia to provide support to the Royal Australian Air Force’s Lead-In-Fighter Hawk aircraft.
The contract is worth $150 million and includes maintenance, engineering and logistic support services to the 33 Lead-In-Fighter Hawk aircraft, two training simulators and a computer-based instruction system.
Through the Strategic Reform Program, Defence has worked with BAE Systems to deliver savings in excess of 10 per cent over the two year extension period.
This was achieved by putting in place a revised maintenance strategy and improvements to the overhaul program for the aircraft.
The Hawks are used to provide introductory fast jet training for aircrew selected to become pilots for the Classic Hornet, Super Hornet and later this decade, the Joint Strike Fighter.
They are based at RAAF Williamtown near Newcastle and RAAF Pearce near Perth.
Across the two sites, BAE Systems employs 180 people to support the aircraft – 130 at RAAF Williamtown and 50 at RAAF Pearce.
Mr Clare said that BAE Systems Australia had been providing support to the aircraft since they came into service in 2000.
“BAE Systems Australia has delivered terrific service to date and the team providing support for this important training system should be congratulated on their efforts,” Mr Clare said.
“This is an important capability for the Air Force – training our future pilots to fly Hornets and eventually the Joint Strike Fighter.
“It’s important that the aircraft and the other training systems are well-supported and maintained.”