Boeing Defence Australia (BDA) has announced it has signed a $60 million agreement with the Commonwealth to provide deeper maintenance to the Royal Australian Air Force’s Boeing P-8A Poseidon fleet for aircraft’s life-of-type.
Boeing already provides through-life-support to the RAAF’s P-8A fleet, but the company says new contract “sets the stage for BDA to undertake major maintenance, repair, and overhaul work and spiral upgrades, including evolving its digital sustainment capability.” Boeing already utilises its digital sustainment model on the RAAF’s C-17A, f/A018F Super Hornet, and EA-18G Growler fleets.
“The contract covers the life of type for the P-8A fleet and will provide exceptional ongoing opportunities for our local supply chain and upskilling of the broader defence and aerospace industry,” BDA director Commercial Derivative Aircraft, Darryn Fletcher said in a release. “We expect the contract will necessitate around 37 additional South Australian jobs from the outset and the engagement of multiple local businesses, and that these numbers will increase over time.”
The milestone aligns with the Commonwealth’s Industry Plan for Aerospace Platform Deeper Maintenance and Structural Integrity and delivers on its objective to build sovereign sustainment capability and Australian defence industry.
“To achieve this on one of Australia’s most complex aerospace programs is evidence of our strong partnership with the Commonwealth and our shared commitment to developing sovereign deeper maintenance capability,” said Fletcher.
The first RAAF P-8A is scheduled to undergo deeper maintenance in July 2022, and the contract also establishes Australia as a potential regional support hub for other P-8A operators such as New Zealand, South Korea, India, and the US Navy.