In the service of the Alliance and its future
The past year has revealed the fragility of peace and security around the world, as well as the importance of maintaining strong transatlantic ties. Complex and ever-evolving threats have thrust Europe and NATO into a new security reality, reminding us that the stability of the Old Continent is a key issue for the entire planet and strengthening the commitment of allied nations to the Alliance.
Strengthening Europe’s security environment requires the collective efforts of nations, partners and industry. NATO’s new Strategic Concept emphasizes the importance of intensifying cooperation with the private sector in order to maintain the Alliance’s military superiority. Continued increases in spending by many European countries are essential to ensure the availability of an industrial base that allows the Alliance to respond to short-term military challenges. Longer-term, closer cooperation between industry and government will lead to positive transformation in key areas, ensuring NATO’s continued resilience and collective security.
Actively contributing to the training of 25 European armed forces, Boeing platforms and services are an integral part of NATO and Europe’s military, peacekeeping and humanitarian operations. As a world leader in aerospace and defense, we are fulfilling a commitment made decades ago: to support NATO in its missions with existing and new capabilities that underpin the future of the Alliance through advanced technologies.
Accelerate the reversal of aging abilities
A fleet of Boeing E-3A aircraft equipped with NATO’s Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS) demonstrates successful transatlantic industrial cooperation. This platform combines the best systems available on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean and creates the world’s first air combat space control capability. A vital component of NATO’s current high-level readiness, this AWACS fleet provides Allied forces with situational awareness and airborne early warning and control (AEW&C) capabilities, and they have contributed to peacekeeping around the world for more than four decades. from former Yugoslavia to Afghanistan and now Ukraine.
As the aging fleet of E-3A aircraft comes under increasing strain, NATO must move quickly to ensure a smooth transition to next-generation AWACS and avoid creating a gap in this critical defense capability.
NATO is currently exploring future air command and control concepts as part of the ASFC program with future surveillance and control capabilities.Future Surveillance and Control Alliance). Boeing’s transatlantic industry team is proud to participate in this program and implement the risk mitigation phase. Recognizing the need to act without delay, the Allies in June “ continuity in the delivery of next-generation AWACS devices “.
The importance of an accelerated approach to filling the AEW&C capability gap left by the retirement of the E-3A cannot be overemphasized. The Boeing E-7, the world’s first air combat control platform, will play an important role in the air command and control architecture (AirC2). “system of systems” which alliance will choose. Importantly, the E-7 is combat-proven and will help fully deploy future Surveillance and Control (ASFC) capability while integrating new technologies.
Address critical capability gaps
In Europe, several decades of unspent spending as well as endless or interrupted procurement processes have led to significant capacity shortages in all areas. Much remains to be done, but the recent commitment by the European Allies to spend more on defense and make the necessary purchases at a sustained pace is a major step forward. For our part, we are committed to helping all allies and partners strengthen their defense capabilities.
Recent reports have shown that advanced electronic attack (EA) capabilities and interception of enemy air defenses are key to high-level warfare. The deployment of the US Navy’s EA-18 Growler electronic warfare aircraft to Germany underscores the importance of this critical capability to the region. NATO and other European countries do not yet have an advanced electronic attack force. The continued deployment of Growler aircraft in Europe through strategic and multilateral load-sharing agreements among NATO allies will fill a critical capability gap. The collaborative approach supported by the Alliance will in turn contribute to maintaining the operational readiness and interoperability of the European Expeditionary Electronic Attack Force.
Maximize 2% through more efficient purchasing
NATO plays a key role in cost optimization by offering its European allies the opportunity to adopt a pooling and sharing model that allows everyone to benefit from the capabilities of a common platform at the best possible cost. Strategic Airlift Capability (SAC — Strategic Airlift Capability) NATO is an example in this respect.
By purchasing operating hours rather than entire platforms, SAC program partners create guaranteed capabilities with the C-17 fleet. This model can also be applied to other priorities such as maritime patrol missions or training aircraft. This sharing of resources can encourage states, regardless of size, to lead by example in filling critical capability gaps within NATO at a fraction of the cost.
If innovation thrives in flourishing competition, unnecessary duplication of effort must be avoided, after which the warrior has lower capabilities despite increased costs.
Projects such as the Next Generation Rotorcraft Capability (NGRC) are emerging in Europe, while similar initiatives are emerging in the US with the future FVL vertical flight aircraft (Future Vertical Lift). On the other side of the Atlantic, the US will choose its own platform under the FLRAA initiative (The future long-range attack aircraft) shares many of the requirements with the NGRC – and this is just as Europe is beginning to study its own helicopter concept of the future.
Collaboration is essential to accelerate acquisitions and leverage mature concepts, in the sense that it allows for leveraging synergies, ensuring interoperability and avoiding duplication.
Partnership, keys to future success
It is important to use locally available aviation capabilities to provide our customers with solutions that meet their requirements and maintain security of supply. It is on the one hand, to provide the necessary level of technology, and on the other hand, to offer prosperity opportunities at the local level by contributing to industrial autonomy and development. On-site support solutions for our customers.
Collaborations with SAAB for T-7 Red Hawk advanced trainer and ground-launched small-diameter bombs (GLSDB — GLSDB) Small-diameter ground-launched bomb) or NAMMO in the RamJet 155 projectile is exemplary in both development and production. Boeing Defense UK and its PBL performance-based logistics support programs for CH-47 and AH-64 helicopters and the KC-767-A tanker are examples of local support capability to support our customers.
Develop and adapt skills as quickly as possible
In the ever-changing technological landscape, it is important to move quickly. Boeing is committed to providing its customers with the most advanced digital solutions, manufactured as simply and efficiently as possible with intelligent support. We want the global airline fleet to continue flying safely and efficiently with data-driven innovation. For example, our T-7 aircraft was developed using digital technologies and took it from computer screens to first flight in just 36 months – a remarkable achievement for our customers.
To maintain its military superiority, NATO must be able to rapidly adopt new technologies to meet the needs of the warfighter. To do this, the Alliance must be more flexible in its approach to innovation and take advantage of advances in technology, while ensuring that end-user requirements remain at the heart of everything we do. In this context, Boeing is committed to supporting NATO in its digital transformation process.
Towards a more sustainable future for defence
In line with society’s efforts to combat climate change, the armed forces must also reduce their carbon footprint. I welcome NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg’s leadership on climate and defense. We see this as an opportunity for NATO armies to create an operational advantage in the modern battlefield, because a more resilient army is a more resilient and capable army.
Fighter success and safety are our two absolute priorities. By integrating sustainability into the life cycle of our products, we can improve these attributes. Operating modern twin-engine aircraft such as the Boeing E-7 early warning and surveillance aircraft and the KC-46 tanker improves operational efficiency while reducing emissions. Similarly, using a modern synthetic training environment with the Boeing T-7 or the Royal Air Force Gladiator system trains fighters without stressing the airframe or wasting fuel. In addition, using modeling technologies to design and manufacture our T-7 aircraft reduces time, cost, rework and material waste, and significantly improves quality levels, ahead of the disruptive innovation curve for our armed forces.
Finally, sustainable aviation fuels represent a proven, ready-to-use technology already deployed in commercial aviation that provides a key solution to defense aviation’s decarbonization challenges. The military can play a key role in accelerating the commercial scale of sustainable aviation fuel, establishing a SAF industry within NATO borders, while also positively impacting energy security.
In March 2022, the Secretary General of NATO said: ” As long as we are together, we are safe “. At Boeing, we believe in and strongly support enhanced transatlantic cooperation to maintain the competitive advantage of our NATO allies in the world’s rapidly changing security and defense landscape.
We are determined to continue our tradition of supporting the mandated mission of the Transatlantic Defense Pact. Our defense solutions are available to help fill Alliance capability gaps. Our continued investments and building of partnerships dedicated to next-generation sustainable technologies will give NATO warfighters an edge over their enemies.