The US Naval Air Systems Command has awarded Bell-Boeing JPO a $19.6 million contract to deliver seven V-22 tilt-rotor aircraft for the US Marine Corps.
The initial contract was awarded to Bell Boeing in June 2013 for the procurement of 100 V-22s during FY13-FY17. The total contract value was nearly $6.4 billion.
The latest contract modification was awarded from the fiscal 2018 aircraft procurement funds and will provide funds for the acquisition of additional long-lead material for the seven aircraft. Bell Boeing is expected to complete work on the contract in December 2018.
The MV-22B Osprey is a tiltrotor V/STOL aircraft designed as the medium-lift replacement for the CH-46E Sea Knight assault support helicopter. The Osprey can operate as a helicopter or a turboprop aircraft and offers twice the speed, six times the range, and three times the payload of the CH-46E.
Initial operational capability (IOC) for the MV-22B was declared in June 2007. The Osprey had three successful combat deployments in Iraq from October 2007 to April 2009 with VMM-263, VMM-162 and VMM-266 respectively. VMM-263 embarked on the first MV-22 shipboard deployment with the Bataan Ready Group in May 2009 as part of the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU).
The Bell Boeing V-22 fleet of tiltrotor aircraft, including both CV-22 and MV-22 variants, surpassed the 400,000-flight hour milestone in November 2017.