Posted: Wed 3rd Nov 2021

Broughton: Raytheon awarded £110m contract to upgrade and increase the RAF Shadow surveillance aircraft.

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Wednesday, Nov 3rd, 2021

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Raytheon has been awarded a multi-million-pound contract to upgrade and increase the Royal Air Force’s fleet of Shadow surveillance aircraft.

Awarded to Raytheon UK, the £110m contract will see the current fleet of six aircraft increased to eight, and the integration of the latest UK Sovereign Defensive Aids Systems, ensuring this vital capability continues to provide battle-winning intelligence gathering for years to come.

The contract will support and secure 150 highly-skilled jobs at Raytheon UK’s Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance hub in Broughton.

It will also sustain around 350 further jobs across the UK supply chain.

James Gray, Raytheon UK managing director of cyber, space and training said: “This additional contract builds on the long-term sustainment contract awarded to Raytheon UK, which provides Through-Life Support to the Shadow fleet a few years ago.”

“The upgrade is being performed at the company’s facility in Broughton”, other Raytheon UK’s sites across the United Kingdom – including at RAF Waddington and Harlow – will also contribute. ”

“We are invested in the British workforce and developing sovereign UK capability.”

“This contract has secured 150 jobs at our Broughton facility and additional jobs throughout our supply chain in Wales and further around the country.”

“We will work with an ecosystem of UK suppliers to ensure the programme benefits from the latest technology and that suppliers across the region have the opportunity to contribute to the upgrade.”

Defence Minister Jeremy Quin said: “Our newly upgraded Shadow Mk2 aircraft be equipped with world-leading technology developed right here in the UK. This investment supports vital defence outputs and 150 high-quality jobs in North Wales.”



Welsh Secretary Simon Hart said: “The signing of this contract with Raytheon is huge news for North Wales and testament to the incredibly skilled local workforce whose hard work, dedication and professionalism have rightly been recognised.

“This is levelling up in action – the UK Government, working with our partners and using our spending power to support jobs and prosperity in every part of the UK.

“Today that levelling up is happening in Broughton with the signing of this £110 million contract.”

Based at RAF Waddington and flown by 14 Squadron, Shadow forms a key part of the RAF’s Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition and Reconnaissance (ISTAR) force by gathering intelligence via its high-definition electro-optical and electronic sensors.

Once the data is gathered, satellite communication links enable the information to be assessed while the aircraft is airborne during a mission. To protect the aircraft from possible attack, the aircraft will be fitted with an improved state-of-the-art Defensive Aids System (DAS).

As part of the contract, the latest DAS will be installed across the fleet of 8 aircraft, increasing its ability to defend itself and operate in unfriendly airspace.

Shadow Programme Senior Responsible Owner, Group Captain Shaun Gee RAF said:This investment will enable the Shadow fleet to be increased in size and equipped with the latest technology providing a key capability as part of the RAF’s next generation Air Force.”

It is expected the first upgraded aircraft will be delivered to the RAF in June 2023, with delivery of the eighth Shadow R Mk2 aircraft before the end of 2025.

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