Wednesday, January 25, 2017

T-X partnership ends

Raytheon and Leonardo will no longer jointly pursue the U.S. Air Force's T-X trainer competition. The companies had planned to build the plane in Mississippi. The companies made the announcement Wednesday, saying they were "unable to reach a business agreement that is in the best interest of the U.S. Air Force." It does not rule out Leonardo continuing to pursue the T-X competition with its T-100 offering, based on the M-346. The partnership was in danger during the fall before an Oct. 14 meeting seemed to clear the air. Sources tell Defense News the issue has focused on where the work on the plane would actually be done. The withdrawal narrows the field of competitors to Boeing with Saab, Lockheed Martin and Korean Aerospace, Northrop Grumman and BAE Systems; and Sierra Nevada and TAI. The Air Force last month released a request for proposals. (Sources: DefenseNews, Inside Defense, 01/25/17) Gulf Coast note: Raytheon in October 2016 had chosen a 130-acre site near the airport in Meridian, Miss., as the final assembly facility. (Post)