Boeing has secured a $1.2 billion Undefinitized Contract Action from the U.S. Air Force to develop two new variants of the E-7 Airborne Early Warning & Control (AEW&C) aircraft. The E-7 is a fully integrated, combat-proven, flexible command and control node that offers multi-domain awareness in challenging operational environments.
Stu Voboril, E-7 program vice president and general manager, stated that “The E-7 is a proven platform”. It is the only advanced aircraft that meets the U.S. Air Force’s near-term Airborne Early Warning & Control requirement while offering joint force integration.
Multi-role Electronically Scanned Array
The E-7 aircraft tracks multiple airborne and maritime threats simultaneously with 360-degree coverage via the Multi-role Electronically Scanned Array (MESA) sensor. MESA provides critical domain awareness to detect and identify adversarial targets at long range while dynamically adjusting to emerging tactical situations.
Besides the U.S. Air Force, other global E-7 operators include the Royal Australian Air Force, Republic of Korea Air Force, Turkish Air Force, and the United Kingdom’s Royal Air Force. The E-7 has a well-established supply chain that significantly reduces maintenance and logistics costs, increasing mission readiness on day one.
Utilizes existing commercial derivative aircraft design
Converted from the Next-Generation 737-700, the E-7 capitalizes on existing commercial derivative aircraft design, certification, and modification processes, allowing E-7s to be fielded to meet Air Force needs. The E-7’s open systems architecture and agile software design enable the aircraft’s capabilities to evolve and remain ahead of future threats.