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Boeing E-7 Wedgetail (RAF)

Contains threads on Royal Air Force equipment of the past, present and future.
Mercator
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Re: Boeing E-7 Wedgetail (RAF)

Postby Mercator » 21 May 2020, 04:19

I wouldn't get too bothered by Marshall's withdrawal. The folks that did the original conversion work in Australia were just the local depot level repair people at an existing Boeing depot. Admittedly, they were doing exclusively military depot level repair, but they had not seen a 737 prior, and they were not conversion specialists like Marshall. They were just the on base depot repair facility at Boeing Australia, RAAF Amberley (previously a RAAF unit and hanger privatised in the 90s). It is a conversion kit, after all. Not supposed to be a bespoke mod.

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ArmChairCivvy
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Re: Boeing E-7 Wedgetail (RAF)

Postby ArmChairCivvy » 21 May 2020, 08:42

Jensy wrote: or else didn't feel capable of delivering the project on time and budget. Boeing singing their praises in the press release makes me think it might be the later.


The last time I can remember a withdrawal like that happened was when PA Consulting quit the role as the 'system of systems' integrator and PM for FRES
- we know what happened in the end
- and so does the MoD/ DE&S as they are back to the Prime Contractor model

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Re: Boeing E-7 Wedgetail (RAF)

Postby SW1 » 22 May 2020, 18:04

https://www.flightglobal.com/defence/we ... 96.article

The UK’s Marshall Aerospace and Defence Group has confirmed that it withdrew from a project to convert five Boeing 737NGs into E-7A Wedgetail surveillance platforms for the Royal Air Force (RAF) due to commercial considerations.

The UK Ministry of Defence in March 2019 signed a £1.5 billion ($1.8 billion) contract with Boeing to replace the RAF’s 707-based E-3D Sentry fleet with five Wedgetail AEW1s. Deliveries are scheduled to occur between 2023 and 2026, with the programme’s first two airframes being refurbished second-hand examples sourced from the commercial sector.

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Re: Boeing E-7 Wedgetail (RAF)

Postby Ron5 » 22 May 2020, 18:43

Cue STS cost overruns & schedule slippage.

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Re: Boeing E-7 Wedgetail (RAF)

Postby bobp » 23 May 2020, 19:50

SW1 wrote:The UK’s Marshall Aerospace and Defence Group has confirmed that it withdrew from a project


Last year Marshalls mentioned it intended it was going to move elsewhere and sell its land at Cambridge for Housing. Have not heard anything since about that move but it may have something to do with the cancellation.

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Re: Boeing E-7 Wedgetail (RAF)

Postby SW1 » 23 May 2020, 20:10

bobp wrote:
SW1 wrote:The UK’s Marshall Aerospace and Defence Group has confirmed that it withdrew from a project


Last year Marshalls mentioned it intended it was going to move elsewhere and sell its land at Cambridge for Housing. Have not heard anything since about that move but it may have something to do with the cancellation.


Anything’s possible, however there is only really 2 companies in the UK that have recent knowledge completing these type of civil to special mission a/c conversions that being Raytheon UK and Marshall’s.

They know what it takes and importantly know the pitfalls, Marshall’s underbid Raytheon to get a recent one and got burned slightly as it unfolded, I suspect they weren’t prepared to take the risk again and stuck to there guns on what they thought the bid should be.

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Re: Boeing E-7 Wedgetail (RAF)

Postby bobp » 23 May 2020, 20:51

SW1 wrote:I suspect they weren’t prepared to take the risk again and stuck to there guns on what they thought the bid should be.

Yes in hindsight I agree, they did originally accept the job, but then realised they would lose out financially, and pulled out.

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Re: Boeing E-7 Wedgetail (RAF)

Postby albedo » 23 May 2020, 21:37

bobp wrote:Last year Marshalls mentioned it intended it was going to move elsewhere and sell its land at Cambridge for Housing. Have not heard anything since about that move but it may have something to do with the cancellation.


Living (relatively) locally this is a topic that's regularly in the local press. I don't think any move is imminent because 2030 has been reported as a likely completion date, and maybe with the move going to one of Cranfield, Duxford or Wyton (an RAF base a few miles NE of Huntingdon). For a few more details (but a year old now) see:

https://www.cambridge-news.co.uk/news/c ... e-16274161

There was a lot of local speculation that Mildenhall would be a better option once the USAF leave but that's already been put back a couple of years to (IIRC) 2025. Certainly the plans seem to be advancing for the US tanker fleet to move to Germany but whether the US might keep some of the other small units there still seems to be an open question.

Right now Mildenhall (along with neighbouring Lakenheath) seems as active as ever - the past few evenings in particular seem to have had one of the occasional campaigns of night flying exercises with Mildenhall Ospreys and KC135 tankers regularly overhead, along with very frequent F15 flights out of Lakenheath. Some quite loud jet noise after dark on occasion as well that didn't sound like F15 or KC135 - conceivably a visiting B1 or something else, though the F15's do make a whole range of noises depending on whether they're eg fully loaded and taking off with afterburners or simply returning from training sorties, though even the return flights can be loud if they have to slow up and fly at high AoA. The budget the USAF have for training seems bottomless. Sorry, wandered seriously OT there.


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