Ministry of Defence
Multi-billion-pound deal for early warning radar aircraft
Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson has signed a $1.98Bn deal to purchase five E-7 early warning radar aircraft.
Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson has signed a $1.98Bn deal to purchase five E-7 aircraft.
The E-7 fleet will replace the current Sentry aircraft and ensure the continued delivery of the UK’s Airborne Early Warning and Control (AEW&C) capability.
Named “Wedgetail” by the Australian Department for Defence, the E-7 aircraft can fly for long periods of time and manage the battlespace from the sky.
Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson said:
The E-7 provides a technological edge in an increasingly complex battlespace, allowing our ships and aircraft to track and target adversaries more effectively than ever. This deal also strengthens our vital military partnership with Australia.
We will operate state-of-the-art F-35 jets and world-class Type-26 warships, and this announcement will help us work even more closely together to tackle the global threats we face.
Chief of the Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal Sir Stephen Hillier, said:
Today’s announcement about the procurement of five E-7 ‘Wedgetail’ Airborne Early Warning and Control aircraft is excellent news for both the RAF and wider Defence. This world-class capability, already proven with our Royal Australian Air Force partners, will significantly enhance our ability to deliver decisive airborne command and control and builds on the reputation of our E3D Sentry Force.
Along with Defence’s investment in other cutting-edge aircraft, E-7 will form a core element of the Next Generation Air Force, able to overcome both current and future complex threats.
The new fleet will be able to track multiple airborne and maritime targets at the same time, using the information it gathers to provide situational awareness and direct other assets such as fighter jets and warships.
The E-7 is a proven aircraft that is currently in-service with the Royal Australian Air Force and has been used on operations in the battle against Daesh in Iraq and Syria.
The E-7 is based on a standard Boeing 737 NG airliner modified to carry a sophisticated Northrop Grumman active electronically-scanned radar. This can cover four million square kilometres over a 10-hour period.
Modification of the aircraft will be carried out in the UK, sustaining over 200 highly skilled jobs at Marshall Aerospace and Defence Group in Cambridge, and there will also be opportunities for British suppliers to be involved in future training and support arrangements.
This announcement builds on a growing military capability and industrial relationship between the UK and Australia, after the Australian government selected the British Type 26 design for its future frigate.
Latest News from
Ministry of Defence
Sherwood Forester and an unknown soldier buried 100 years after their deaths in the Great War19/04/2019 10:15:00
Two burial services have taken place on the Western Front for an unknown soldier of the Sherwood Foresters and an unknown soldier of an unknown regiment.
Universities urged to boost support for armed forces19/04/2019 08:12:10
Two Government Ministers have written to universities calling on them to step up provisions for the forces community and sign up to the Armed Forces Covenant.
Life-saving frontline technology given £5 million boost17/04/2019 12:15:00
The development of the TXA Autoinjector will allow life-saving blood clotting treatment to be given at the push of a button.
UK and India strengthen defence ties with new agreement17/04/2019 10:15:00
The UK is set to strengthen defence ties with India through a renewed Memorandum of Understanding, Defence Minister Stuart Andrew has announced.
Apaches take off for Estonia16/04/2019 16:42:00
Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson bid farewell to Army aviators as they took off for Estonia, where they will be training alongside NATO forces working to reassure our allies and deter our adversaries.
RAF Northolt runway closes as planned for resurfacing16/04/2019 13:15:00
RAF Northolt’s runway has closed for 6 months as planned so that resurfacing works can take place.
Cornish soldier killed during World War 1 is finally laid to rest16/04/2019 10:15:00
Private (Pte) Arthur Burt who served with the Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry, has been honoured and has finally been laid to rest
Dstl launches new game to recruit brightest minds for cyber work16/04/2019 09:10:00
The Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) has launched an online game to recruit more than 60 staff to work in Cyber and Information Systems.
Suppliers announced for housing and facilities management contract framework10/04/2019 16:05:00
DIO’s Future Defence Infrastructure Services (FDIS) programme has reached a milestone with the announcement that Crown Commercial Service (CCS) has appointed companies to new frameworks for new housing and facilities management (FM) contracts.