Rockwell Collins has been selected by the Australian Army to provide extended avionics support for its fleet of CH-47F Chinook helicopters through a performance-based logistics (PBL) contract.
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In an agreement that extends to 2020, Rockwell Collins will provide field service engineering, program management, logistics service and repair and overhaul for the Common Avionics Architecture System (CAAS) components installed on the aircraft and Transportable Flight Proficiency Simulators.
Under this extension, the Australian Army will receive local support and on-site maintenance and training for their avionics. To date, they have achieved an average availability of 100 per cent on all CAAS equipment over 20 months with zero aircraft on ground (AOG) incidents.
Rachael Taylor, Chinook platform manager, Cargo Helicopter and Unmanned Surveillance Program Office for the Australian Army, said the results already produced by Rockwell Collins were impressive.
“The partnership with Rockwell Collins in support of the Australian Army CH-47F Chinooks has proven economical and highly efficient whilst improving successes in its operational domains," said Taylor.
"These results have led the unit to extend the contract to ensure the in-country Rockwell Collins interface is maintained to ensure mission success."
Thierry Tosi, vice president and general manager, service solutions for Rockwell Collins, said the contract extension is a vote of confidence for the aviation solutions business.
“We’ve been supporting the Australian Army since they took delivery of their aircraft three years ago, delivering the highest level of service in country so they can maintain mission readiness,” said Tosi.
"This extension demonstrates their confidence in our services program and the value we provide through a PBL."
Rockwell Collins Australia also supports the F-35 program. It has a long-term agreement with Northrop Grumman Corporation to produce up to 40 per cent of the world’s optical assemblies F-35 electro-optic distributed aperture system (DAS) for the JSFs. As many as 3,000 JSFs could be produced worldwide and Australia is set to acquire 72 of them over the next decade.
The DAS, produced at Rockwell Collins Australia's Sydney headquarters, is a multifunction infrared system providing passive, spherical battlespace awareness for F-35 pilots. It simultaneously detects and tracks aircraft and missiles in every direction, as well as providing visual imagery for day and night navigation and targeting purposes.
The imagery projected onto the pilot's helmet-mounted display provides the capability to look at targets and terrain through the floor and wings of the aircraft.
Defence also has a $40 million contract with Rockwell Collins Australia to supply eight new digital terminal control systems. The contract includes operator and maintenance support and builds on the acquisition of three interim systems in March last year, with 80 per cent of the contract value to be spent in Australia.