Northrop Switches With BAE for Prime Contractor Role in AF T-X Trainer Bid

ContractNorthrop Grumman (NYSE: NOC) has taken the prime contractor role in its joint bid with BAE Systems for the potential $11 billion U.S. Air Force T-X trainer contract, Breaking Defense reported Monday.

Colin Clark writes Northrop will now lead its partnership BAE, L-3 Link Simulation & Training and Rolls-Royce as they offer BAE’s Hawk trainer jet for the Air Force’s 350-plane program.

“The decision to realign was reached mutually by all team members to better leverage Northrop Grumman’s domestic development and production capabilities, which were realized through the company’s establishment and investment in its Centers of Excellence last year, ” the official statement said, according to the report.

Clark reports Northrop has five CoEs and work on the T-X would occur at the company’s Manned Aircraft Design Center at the Melbourne International Airport and the Aircraft Integration Center of Excellence in St. Augustine, both in Florida.

Other teams bidding for the contract include:

  • Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) and Korean Aerospace Industries
  • General Dynamics (NYSE: GD) and Alenia Aermacchi
  • Boeing (NYSE: BA) and Saab

The $600 million budget for the T-X program was included in the Future Years Defense Plan beginning in 2017.

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