Agency is asking for industry comment on whether the proposed schedule is reasonable

The US Federal Aviation Administration has revealed its timetable for Local Area Augmentation System (LAAS) procurement.

LAAS will augment the GPS-based Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS), providing an all-weather satellite-based approach and landing capability, including Category I, II and III precision approaches, replacing existing instrument landing systems.

LAAS development was initiated in April 1999 through a cost-sharing government-industry partnership. Honeywell, Raytheon and Airsys ATM have each formed consortia, comprising LAAS ground system and avionics manufacturers, airlines and airports to bid for LAAS Category I development and production contracts.

The FAA wants industry comment on draft LAAS Cat I specifications, for remote maintenance monitoring, system siting, system safety assurance design and system architecture design.

The FAA plans to issue a second request for information by late September, to include a draft statement of work and draft contract data requirements for industry comment.

The final request for offers is planned in October/November. Bidders will have 60 days to respond. The FAA plans to award a LAAS Cat I development/acquisition contract next April for 10 low-rate initial production (LRIP) and 40 full-rate production Cat I systems. The winning team can expect follow-on Cat I system production work. A separate FAA contract is planned for award in fiscal year 2003/04 for the development and production of the LAAS Cat II/III system.

LAAS procurement is being conducted in three phases, the first two involving procurement of up to 106 Cat I systems, 60 of which will be upgraded later to Cat II/III systems. Initial operational capability (IOC) for the Cat I system is set for September 2003. The FAA plans to procure a minimum of 114 Cat II/III systems with IOC set for March 2006.

Source: Flight International