The high-tech aerospace market continues to support manufacturers capable of supplying precision products and systems. CPI Aerostructures Inc. has gained a $9.6-million modification to an earlier Northrop Grumman Corp. contract, giving it the go-ahead to start of producing a new series of Outer Wing Panel (OWP) kits for the E-2D Advanced Hawkeye, a tactical airborne early warning aircraft (AWEA).
Edgewood, N.Y.-based CPI Aero produces structural aircraft parts for prime defense contractors, the U.S. Air Force, and other branches of the armed forces. It is also a subcontractor of parts to commercial aircraft OEMs.
The OWP kits are use by Northrop Grumman in its manufacturing wing sets for the aircraft.
The E-2D is a twin-turboprop used by the U.S. Navy to map airspace in the effort to manage a battle.
Northrop Grumman’s predecessor Grumman Aircraft Co. designed the first aircraft in the series for the U.S. Navy during the 1950s, and it entered service in1964. The version now in service is the fourth-generation of the series, introduced in 2007. Navies of several U.S. allies also use it.
CPI Aero’s new assignment concerns a version of the aircraft now in development, the E-2D Advanced Hawkeye. The first two aircraft in the series are now in flight-testing, and several more are undergoing Initial Operational Test and Evaluation by U.S. Navy test crews.
The modification indicated in the contract supports the E-2D program full-rate production for the first lot of the aircraft, according to CPI Aero.
CPI Aero has been producing OWP kits for the E-2D and the C-2A aircraft since June 2008, and has received orders and advanced funding for OWP kits totaling approximately $46.3 million.