Northrop Grumman Systems Corp. is awarded a contract modification, worth around $64 million, in support of the U.S. Navy Broad Area Maritime Surveillance – Demonstrator, or BAMS-D, program.
This modification is to exercise options for operations and maintenance services in support of the BAMS-D Program, including logistics and sustaining engineering support.
Fiscal 2020 operations and maintenance (Navy) funds in the amount of $59.5 million are being obligated at time of award, all of which will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The U.S. Department of the Navy’s Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) at Patuxent River, Maryland, is the contracting activity (N00019-18-C-1009) (P00011).
The contract work will be performed in Patuxent River, Maryland (70%); Rancho Bernardo, California (5%); and at forward operating locations (25%). Work is expected to be complete by June 2021.
The BAMS-D is an RQ-4A Global Hawk High-Altitude Long Endurance (HALE) Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) that conducts real-time intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) missions over vast ocean and coastal regions.
These aircraft are older U.S. Air Force airframes transferred to the Navy to act as a demonstrator for the technologies used onboard the MQ-C Triton aircraft.
Out of the five BAMS-D aircraft acquired by the Navy, only two are currently operational. One aircraft crashed in the Chesapeake Bay in 2012 and another was shot down by an Iranian surface-to-air missile (SAM) system on June 19 last year. One BAMS-D suffered major Foreign Object Debris (FOD) damage while attempting to take off from an undisclosed runway in the Middle East in November last year.
The BAMS-D aircraft is being complemented by the emerging MQ-4C Triton drone.
The first operational MQ-4C aircraft was delivered to the U.S. Navy by Northrop Grumman on Nov. 10, 2017. The aircraft was officially inducted to the Navy fleet with a ceremony at the Naval Base Ventura County in Point Mugu, California on May 31, 2018. The new program is set to reach initial operating capability in 2021.