Air Force One is a technology masterpiece that came to symbolize the American presidency and the power of the free world. Its history springs in the year of 1943 when the Air Force predecessor and Secret Service agreed on designating a specific military aircraft for the sole purpose of safely transporting the president through the air. As of recently, Boeing won another contract that awarded it the honor to design the next presidential aircraft for $600 million.
Boeing Will Use the $600 Million Funds to Create the Preliminary Design only
On Tuesday, Boeing received almost $600 million funds in a bid from the U.S. Air Force to design the next generation of presidential aircraft. According to its new contract, the Chicago aerospace behemoth will have first to take care of the preliminary design. The prerequisites for this construction include a medical facility, self-defense systems, mission control platform, electrical power upgrades, and necessary capabilities for autonomous ground operations.
White House designated two existing commercial 747-8 planes to be tweaked into comprehensive military aircraft to transport and guard the presidential community. The current Air Force One plane dates back from the administration of President George H. W. Bush in 1990. This is an upgraded version of a VC-25A plane.
The New Generation of Air Force One Will Be Ready by 2024
As a consequence, the $600 million contract is just the initial agreement between the Air Force and Boeing. After this first stage is completed, the agency is expected to issue a new contract next summer. This will also be the final gig that involves design completion, instating the upgrades in the two 747-8 planes, tests, and delivering the final products. The project scheduled the jets to become usable by 2024.
The two planes that are to become part of the presidential fleet were acquired last month by Air Force from Boeing at a discount. The merchandise was first created for the Russian airline, Transaero. However, the company entered bankruptcy and couldn’t cover the payment for these two jets. Therefore, they remained for several years inactive until Trump decided to buy them instead of creating new jets for his administration from scratch.
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