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Government commits to Edinburgh infrastructure upgrades

Defence Minister Linda Reynolds and Defence Industry Minister Melissa Price have announced a $220 million investment in infrastructure upgrades for RAAF Base Edinburgh in South Australia to support the MC-55A Peregrine capability.

Defence Minister Linda Reynolds and Defence Industry Minister Melissa Price have announced a $220 million investment in infrastructure upgrades for RAAF Base Edinburgh in South Australia to support the MC-55A Peregrine capability.

The $220 million in major infrastructure upgrades at RAAF Base Edinburgh will include the construction of a hangar, maintenance facilities, and operational accommodation to support the intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance and electronic warfare MC-55A Peregrine capability.

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Defence Minister Linda Reynolds said the upgraded facilities would strengthen Australia's ability to support to naval, air and land forces.

"The Peregrine will be integrated real-time into Defence’s warfighting networks alongside other Defence capabilities to enhance Australia’s situational awareness during both peacetime and conflict. The Peregrine integrates with other latest generation air, sea and land capabilities to achieve improved survivability and decision superiority," Minister Reynolds explained. 

The MC-55A Peregrine is an airborne intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance and electronic warfare (AISREW) mission systems aircraft that will be based at RAAF Base Edinburgh in South Australia – yet another piece in a broader ISR precinct being developed at the Super Base, which is already home to the Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft.

Minister Reynolds added, "Today’s announcement builds on this government’s $2.5 billion investment in South Australia on Defence facilities and infrastructure over the coming decade, including at Edinburgh Defence Precinct, Woomera Prohibited Area, Keswick Barracks, and the Cultana Training Area."

Italy, Israel and Singapore operate Gulfstream G550s modified by IAI with large conformal antennas and other enhancements in the AEW&C role, and the US Navy has also ordered a similarly configured aircraft for range-control work. Various other special-mission G550s serve with the US government and other countries.

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Defence Industry Minister Melissa Price congratulated Lendlease as the managing contractor to deliver the works to the base, saying, "The project’s construction workforce is expected to peak at about 200 people. It once again shows how South Australia is benefiting so strongly from the Morrison government’s commitment to building a robust and resilient defence industry."

Australia requested the possible sale of up to five Gulfstream G550 with AISREW mission systems, GPS capability, secure communications, aircraft defensive systems; spares, including whole-life costs of airborne and ground segments; aircraft modification and integration; ground systems for data processing and crew training; ground support equipment; publications and technical data; US government and contractor engineering, technical and logistics support services; flight test and certification; and other related elements of logistical and program support.

Minister Price added, "Lendlease has committed to achieving a local participation rate of about 80 per cent, which is an outstanding result for the local defence industry."

Lendlease will shortly commence site establishment activities, with construction anticipated to commence in late 2020 and be completed by 2025.

Requests for tenders for local participation will be released into the market in mid-2021.

Government commits to Edinburgh infrastructure upgrades
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