The Air Force has selected Aurora Flight Sciences to support its new aerospace vehicle research program with a nearly $500 million contract to develop innovative technological capabilities.
Aurora announced Sunday the $499 million indefinite delivery contract to work with the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) on its Aerospace Systems Air Platform Technology Research (ASAPTR) program. The Air Force first put out calls for contract proposals in January.
“Aurora’s Research and Technology Division concentrates on the technologies of autonomy, electric propulsion, advanced manufacturing, multi-vehicle coordination, and advanced multi-dimensional optimization. All of these will be brought to bear for the Air Force through ASAPTR,” Aurora Chairman and CEO John Langford said in a statement.
In March 2016, the AFRL’s Aerospace Systems Directorate detailed the project and the specific qualifications for potential contractors to conduct research on aerospace vehicle platforms needed for delivering weapons and cargo. The directorate was seeking research & development in areas including aerospace vehicle advanced configurations, systems automation and control hardware and architecture.
The research conducted under the ASAPTR program will go towards improving integrated surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities, rapid mobility, precision attack and air superiority, agile combat support and special operations needs of the Air Force’s aerospace vehicles.
The contract is expected to be completed in 2025, and work will take place at Aurora’s Manassas, Va., headquarters and its other facilities around the country.