Air Force Releases Draft Proposal for New Training Jet

Four teams are expected to compete for the contract for a new U.S. Air Force training jet:

  • Boeing Co. (NYSE: BA) has joined with Saab and they are expected to offer a clean-sheet design.
  • Northrop Grumman Corp. (NYSE: NOC) has teamed up with BAE Systems and L-3 Communications Holdings Inc. (NYSE: LLL) on another clean-sheet design.
  • Lockheed Martin Corp. (NYSE: LMT) and Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) are expected to go with a modified KAI T-50.
  • Raytheon Corp. (NYSE: RTN) has joined with Italy’s Leonardo and Canada’s CAE Inc. (NYSE: CAE) on a version of Leonardo’s M-346 trainer that it calls the T-100.

The draft request for proposals (RFP) is unique in offering incentives for exceeding threshold performance specifications, including high-g force maneuvering, high angle-of-attack maneuvering and aerial refueling. According to Aviation Week, the threshold for high-g force maneuvering is 6.5 g and the objective is 7.5 g. For every 0.1 g above the threshold, the bidder receives a point bonus. All other things equal, including price, the bidder with higher sustained g-capability will receive a higher rating overall.

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