Boeing Rolls Out First EA-18G Growler
Boeing Rolls Out First EA-18G Growler
Saint Louis, Missouri -- (Boeing)
August 4, 2006 -- The Boeing Company [NYSE: BA] yesterday rolled out the U.S.
armed forces' newest airborne electronic attack aircraft, the EA-18G Growler, on
time and within budget.
Photo Ron Bookout
Boeing presented the aircraft to a crowd of more than 750
U.S. Navy customers, industry partners and Boeing employees during a ceremony at
its Integrated Defense Systems facilities in St. Louis. U.S. Navy Adm. Michael
G. Mullen, Chief of Naval Operations and guest speaker at the ceremony, said, "The
Growler is a model of what a strong strategic relationship between the Navy and
industry can do. It represents acquisition excellence at its finest. This
program has saved billions of dollars with an innovative approach.
"It is clear that the demand for electronic warfare is not
only going to remain high, but is going to grow," the admiral said during his
remarks. "The Growler was designed and built to answer that call. Its speed,
range and robust self-defense systems will serve as force multipliers for naval
aviation and greatly strengthen the entire joint force."
A derivative of the combat-proven, two-seat F/A-18F Super
Hornet, the EA-18G's highly flexible design enables warfighters to perform an
array of airborne electronic attack (AEA) missions, operating from either the
deck of an aircraft carrier or land-based fields. The EA-18G integrates the
capabilities of the most advanced AEA system, designed and produced by the
Northrop Grumman Corporation, which recently completed tests on the EA-6B, with
the advanced weapons, sensors and communications systems found on the Super
The U.S. Navy selected the EA-18G to replace the current AEA
platform, the EA-6B Prowler, which has been in service since 1971. Boeing
received the EA-18G Systems Development and Demonstration phase contract on Dec.
29, 2003. The aircraft's first flight is planned for later this month, several
weeks ahead of the originally scheduled date. EA-18G flight testing will take
place at the Navy's Patuxent River, Md. and China Lake, Calif., test sites
"Today's events are a tribute to the unparalleled excellence
of the Hornet Industry Team, which has continually shown the nation that
developmental programs can meet or exceed customer's expectations," said Chris
Chadwick, vice president and general manager of Boeing Global Strike Systems. "We
stand here today as a testament to innovation and excellence in every aspect of
procurement, from the person who first came up with the concept, to the person
who turned the last wrench to bring this amazing aircraft to us today."
The Growler will join the Navy's aircraft fleet in 2009. Capt.
Donald "BD" Gaddis, F/A-18 program manager for the U.S. Navy, praised the
development program, saying, "We're providing the warfighters of today something
they can't even imagine. We're going to deliver a product that is truly going to
transform the way we fight."
Boeing, acting as the weapon system integrator and prime
contractor, leads the EA-18G Growler industry team. Northrop Grumman is the
principal subcontractor and airborne electronic attack subsystem integrator. The
Hornet Industry Team will divide EA-18G production across Boeing, Northrop
Grumman, General Electric and Raytheon manufacturing facilities. The System
Design, Development and Demonstration program concludes with an Initial
Operational Capability in 2009. Naval Air Systems Command PMA-265 is the U.S.
Navy acquisition office for the EA-18G.
A unit of The Boeing Company, Boeing
Integrated Defense Systems
is one of the world's largest space and defense businesses. Headquartered in
St. Louis, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is a $30.8 billion business. It
provides network-centric system solutions to its global military, government
and commercial customers. It is a leading provider of intelligence,
surveillance and reconnaissance systems; the world's largest military
aircraft manufacturer; the world's largest satellite manufacturer; a
foremost developer of advanced concepts and technologies; a leading provider
of space-based communications; the primary systems integrator for U.S.
missile defense; NASA's largest contractor; and a global leader in
sustainment solutions and launch services.