Feb. 4 (UPI) -- M7 Aerospace, a subsidiary of Elbit Systems of America, has been awarded a sub-contract worth up to $22 million to provide an avionics refresh for the U.S. Air National Guard RC-26B, a turbo-prop, fixed-wing aircraft.
M7 Aerospace announced Monday it was awarded an initial $5 million order from Support Systems Associates -- but with all options, the contract is worth 4.5 times that amount for the aircraft, which are used for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance operations.
The work includes avionics engineering, design, integration, modification, test and maintenance for the planes.
Work will be performed at the company's plants in San Antonio, with a projected 2021 completion date.
"The U.S. Air National Guard can trust Elbit Systems of America to keep their aircraft mission ready," Raanan Horowitz, president and CEO of Elbit Systems of America, said in a news release. "We are committed to delivering advanced avionics that modernize the RC-26B aircraft and enhance its relevance and sustainability."
Parent company Elbit Systems Ltd. is an Israel-based international defense electronics company.
The RC-26B is a modified version of the Fairchild C-26 Metroliner, a turbo-prop plane used by the U.S. military that has been modified with electronic surveillance equipment for drug intercept missions. Fairchild's assets were purchased by M7 Aerospace in 2010.
As of 2017, the Air National Guard had 13 aircraft in the Condor fleet, including two older C-26As that it was planning to modify to a RC-26B standard.
In 2017, an RC-26B flew missions over impacted areas from Hurricane Harvey in southeastern Texas. The aircraft was assigned to the Texas Air National Guard's 111th Attack Squadron based at Ellington Field Joint Reserve Base in Houston, The Drive's Warzone reported.