LONDON, March 29 (UPI) -- Britain's Ministry of Defense has committed more than $527 million for four contracts for continued in-service support of Hawk training aircraft.
The fleet of Hawk TMk1 and TMk2 aircraft made by BAE Systems are used by Royal Air Force and Royal Navy for military flying training prior to conversion onto frontline fast jet aircraft, such as the Typhoon.
"The Hawk is a world-class training aircraft for our future fast jet aircrew," said Minister for Defense Procurement Philip Dunne. "It will ... be used to train the pilots that will fly our new F-35s, some of the most advanced aircraft in the world.
"The contracts to support these vital training aircraft are a boost to British industry, sustaining hundreds of jobs across the UK -- all made possible by our growing Defense budget and our £178 billion ($252.3 billion) investment in buying and maintaining the best possible kit for our Armed Forces."
Contracts worth almost $425.3 million have been awarded to BAE Systems to provide in-service support and post-design services for the Hawk TMk1 and TMk2, the MOD said. Included are provisions for design advice and modification and obsolescence management.
Also among the contracts is a $112 million award to Rolls-Royce to provide support for its Adour engines, which power the Hawk aircraft, with testing, repairs and overhaul services.