US OKs $160M E-2C Hawkeye Sustainment Support for France

The US State Department has approved a potential sustainment support contract for France’s E-2C Hawkeye airborne early warning aircraft.

Valued at $160 million, the deal would see Northrop Grumman supply sustainment items and services, including software updates and engine component improvement.

The American defense giant would also provide the French Air Force with technical and product support, as well as logistics services for the Hawkeye aircraft.

According to the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency, the proposed sale would help maintain the “mission-capable” status of the country’s E-2C fleet.

It would reportedly improve France’s capability to meet existing and emerging threats in the region.

Once the foreign military sale is implemented, US government personnel will be required to occasionally visit Paris for technical oversight.

One person from Northrop Grumman will also be permanently assigned to the European nation to provide program and technical reviews.

About the E-2C Hawkeye

Northrop’s E-2 Hawkeye is an all-weather, carrier-based airborne early warning aircraft that can operate at more than 25,000 feet (7.6 kilometers).

It is equipped with Lockheed Martin’s AN/APS-145 radar for simultaneous tracking of over 2,000 targets at ranges greater than 550 kilometers (341 miles).

Apart from battle management and command and control, the aircraft can support surface surveillance coordination, air interdiction, search and rescue airborne coordination, and communications relay.

In 2021, the US Naval Air Systems Command awarded Northrop a $354-million contract to build three E-2D Advanced Hawkeye aircraft for France.

The aircraft incorporates French-specific features such as a French Aerospace Industry Service computer for autonomous system upgrades.

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