The Air Force has cleared to return to flight four Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (JSTARS) aircraft that were grounded late last week.
Air Force spokesman Charles Paone said Monday the aircraft were grounded due to concerns with the aircraft after they had emerged from depot maintenance. Paone said the concerns were able to be immediately remedied onsite at Robins AFB, Ga., by the 116th Air Control Wing. Air Force spokeswoman Ann Stefanek said no additional details will be released since there is a safety investigation board in progress.
There are 16 JSTARS aircraft in the active Air Force. The service wants to procure new aircraft, but the procurement faces speed bumps over how the contracts are structured (Defense Daily, Sept. 21).
JSTARS recap is one of the Air Force’s most anticipated programs. The service anticipates spending roughly $1.2 billion on the program through fiscal year 2020 if the program survives internal budget battles in its current form.