Singapore to get additional G550 as AEW trainer

London
Source: Flightglobal.com
This story is sourced from Flightglobal.com

Singapore Technologies Aerospace Engineering has been awarded a S$105 million ($73.4 million) contract to deliver training services in support of the Republic of Singapore Air Force's future fleet of Gulfstream G550-based airborne early warning and control system aircraft.

Announced on 16 September, the 20-year public-private partnership deal will deliver flying training services and instructors from 2012 using a G550 business jet (below) to be acquired and maintained by ST Aero.

 
© Gulfstream

"We have been providing the RSAF with cost-effective solutions to meet its needs in both maintenance and training, and this latest contract further validates our ability to fulfil RSAF requirements," says ST Aero president Tay Kok Khiang.

Singapore will receive four G550 aircraft modified by Israel Aerospace Industries' Elta Systems subsidiary, with these expected to be similar in configuration to the Israeli air force's G550-based conformal AEW (CAEW) aircraft, the first two of which entered service in February and May 2008 (one pictured below at July's Farnborough air show).

 
© Craig Hoyle/Flight International

Elta says the CAEW platform offers a mission endurance of 9h when operating at an altitude of 41,000ft (12,500m) and 185km (100nm) from its home base. The aircraft features dual S-band radar arrays at the front and rear, plus L-band sensors on the fuselage side, providing 360° coverage. Israel's configuration (diagram below) has six onboard operator stations.

 
© Craig Hoyle/Flight International

The modified G550 also has pod-housed electronic support measures equipment, plus satellite communications and line-of-sight datalinks. Elta says the airframe modifications have "minimal impact" on the business jet's performance.

According to previous statements by Singapore's defence ministry, its AEW aircraft will be delivered between late 2008 and 2010.