L-3 Communications announced Sept. 13 that it had delivered the final Project Liberty MC-12W to the Air Force, completing the Liberty Project Aircraft contract issued as an urgent operational requirement. The actual delivery took place Aug. 31 when the aircraft was flown from the L-3 Mission Integration facility in Greenville, Tex., to the Air National Guard training facility at Key Field, Miss. USAF acquired the first of 37 MC-12 intelligence-surveillance-reconnaissance aircraft in March 2009. The aircraft have been deployed to Southwest Asia since June 2009, first in Iraq and then in Afghanistan. “The Air Force and L-3 completed an amazing feat,” said Mark Von Schwarz, president of L-3 Mission Integration. His division delivered all 37 ISR-equipped aircraft in less than 24 months, with each one on or before contract due date, stated the company release.
Boeing’s receipt of the 10th lot contract award for the KC-46 Pegasus this week leaves just three lots left to complete the Air Force’s buy of the tanker, although a further buy of 75 additional aircraft as a “bridge” to the Next-Generation Aerial-refueling System (NGAS) seems increasingly likely.