Northrop Grumman has recently inducted the first U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) P-3 Orion aircraft for depot level maintenance at its Aircraft Maintenance and Fabrication Center in Lake Charles.
Northrop Grumman was awarded a contract in June for aircraft maintenance and logistics services for the CBP P-3 Orion fleet. In addition to depot level maintenance, the company will support daily operations of the 14 aircraft fleet operating primarily out of Jacksonville, Florida, and Corpus Christi, Texas, as well as domestic and international deployment locations. All 14 aircraft in the fleet will undergo depot inductions over the course of the contract.
“Northrop Grumman’s expertise in aircraft maintenance, logistics and sustainment have kept aircraft fleets mission ready for decades,” said Michelle Scarpella, sector vice president and general manager, global sustainment and modernization, Northrop Grumman. “We support operations of aircraft around the world and have delivered depot maintenance from our Aircraft Maintenance and Fabrication Center in Lake Charles for over 20 years.”
Northrop Grumman’s growing Aircraft Maintenance and Fabrication Center is home to 700 professionals who have performed over 15 million hours of direct maintenance work on numerous aircraft including the P-3 Orion, E-8C Joint STARS, E2-C Hawkeye, C-2A Greyhound, and the UK Royal Air Force’s E-3D Sentry.
CBP’s Air and Marine Operations (AMO) operates two variants of the P-3 Orion aircraft, the P-3 Orion Airborne Early Warning (AEW) aircraft and the P-3 Orion Long Range Tracker (LRT) aircraft. The P-3 AEW and LRT aircraft perform a wide variety of operational missions, especially those that require long station time overhead, hemispheric range, and missions throughout all weather and environmental conditions. The versatile P -3 also serves as a force multiplier in joint operations with local, state, and federal partners for National Special Security Events and consequence management efforts.
CBP’s P-3 AEW detection and monitoring aircraft is the only dedicated law enforcement AEW aircraft in the world. They were developed to provide wide area search, as well as increased command, control, and communications capabilities. The P-3 LRT is a high-endurance, all-weather, tactical turboprop aircraft primarily used to conduct long-range aerial patrols and surveillance missions along the U.S. borders and in drug transit zones in Central and South America.
P-3 AEW aircraft often fly in tandem with the P-3 LRT. Deployed in this manner, the P -3 AEW detects and tracks multiple targets and the accompanying P-3 LRT intercepts, identifies, and tracks those targets.