Air Forces upgrade displays with Boeing

Boeing has been awarded a $40 million contract to develop and integrate new colour displays in existing F/A-18 A/B aircraft for the Canadian Air Force and Royal Australian Air Force.

The contract, funded by the Canadian government, will cover initial development, integration and testing of the new displays.

This collaborative effort, managed by Boeing for Australia and Canada, will replace monochrome crew-station displays with full-colour displays, which are said to offer greater capability for integrated situational awareness.

The upgrade program will involve modifying displays on 71 Australian and 80 Canadian F/A-18s and could be worth more than $100 million over the life of the contract.

Responsible for overall development and integration, Boeing will subcontract with Litton Systems Canada, a Northrop Grumman subsidiary, to design and build the system. Delivery of the first new display suite is expected in 2005.

‘This collaboration between Canada and Australia works well because of the similarity of the aircraft,’ commented Boeing Program Manager Paul Niewald. ‘Both customers were looking for a solution to transition to state-of-the-art displays so it was a natural fit.’