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Lockheed Martin Offers New Production P-3 for Germany, Italy and U.S.; Announces New Life Extension Capability for Current Operators
PRNewswire-FirstCall
FARNBOROUGH, England

Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co. Vice President of Special Mission and Reconnaissance Aircraft Programs Ted Samples said today (July 25, 2002) that more than 450 P-3s are in active service with the U.S. Navy and 15 international operators, making the P-3 Orion the world's standard for maritime patrol aircraft.

Samples briefed international reporters on the P-3 Orion and how it has played a significant role in maritime patrol in the past and is ready to meet future requirements.

Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co. is a business area of Lockheed Martin Corp. .

While discussing the five Lockheed Martin companies dedicated to the support of the P-3 worldwide, Samples announced that a new teaming arrangement with Vought Industries to manufacture new wings for the P-3 will provide P-3 operators around the world with a proven, low-risk means of extending the life of their Orion fleets.

"The P-3's most critical assembly is the wing, and the manufacturing processes and facilities at Vought Aircraft Industries will provide the world's P-3 operators with economic wing replacement alternatives," Samples said. "We are excited about the future of the proven and versatile P-3 Orion. Ongoing product improvements -- combined with Lockheed Martin's vast experience as the U.S. Navy's premier designer, developer and integrator of maritime patrol systems -- will continue to be applied to our P-3 customers' needs."

To further demonstrate the capabilities of Lockheed Martin's P-3 team and its ability to leverage capabilities across numerous Lockheed Martin business units, Samples discussed a recent contract with the U.S. Customs Service to upgrade four of its P-3B Airborne Early Warning (AEW) aircraft. Lockheed Martin Aircraft & Logistics Centers in Greenville, S.C., will perform the modification work; Lockheed Martin Naval Electronics & Surveillance Systems in Eagan, Minn., and Syracuse, N.Y., will provide the mission avionics suite and the APS-145 radar, and Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co. is serving as prime contractor, performing the engineering, integration and test activities, and managing the execution of the program.

Samples discussed P-3 business opportunities Lockheed Martin is currently pursuing to include the U.S. Navy's Maritime Multimission Aircraft program designed to replace the Navy's aging P-3 fleet. Lockheed Martin submitted its proposal in May 2002 and will offer a fully modernized new production P-3.

Another business pursuit Samples discussed is the joint Germany and Italy Maritime Patrol Aircraft Replacement (MPA-R) program. The program, which calls for 10 aircraft for Germany and 14 for Italy, has an estimated value of more than $3 billion. Lockheed Martin will submit its proposal tomorrow (July 26) and again will be offering a new production P-3.

In the face of new business opportunities, Samples acknowledged the possibility of restarting the P-3 assembly line. With the last eight new production P-3C airplanes delivered from the company's Marietta, Ga., USA, facility, Samples said, Marietta would appear to be the most cost-effective site should the line restart.

Samples ended his presentation by reminding his audience that the P-3 remains the world standard in maritime patrol and reconnaissance aircraft and will be in service with the U.S. Navy and its international operators well into the 21st century. "The P-3 is a significant force-multiplier due to its multimission capabilities and has a strong support infrastructure, giving it a well-defined path for future enhancements," Samples said.

Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co., headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas, is a leader in the design, development, systems integration, production, and support of advanced military aircraft and related technologies. Its customers include the military services of the United States and allied countries throughout the world. Products include the F-16, F-22, F-35 JSF, F-117, T-50, C-5, C-130, C-130J, P-3, S-3 and U-2.

Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co. is a unit of Lockheed Martin Corp., headquartered in Bethesda, Md. Lockheed Martin is a global enterprise principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture and integration of advanced technology systems, products and services. Employing about 125,000 people worldwide, Lockheed Martin had 2001 sales of $24 billion.

   For information on Lockheed Martin Corp., visit:
   http://www.lockheedmartin.com/

   For information on Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co., visit:
   http://www.lmaeronautics.com/

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SOURCE: Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company

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