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BAE gets contract to upgrade S Korean KF-16s

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LONDON (BNS): South Korea has awarded BAE Systems a contract worth $1.1 billion to upgrade its older fleet of KF-16 fighter aircraft, a news report said.

DefenseNews quoting the country's Defence Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) said, BAE beat Lockheed Martin to win the contract awarded under a Foreign Military Sales deal.

Under the deal, BAE will oversee installation of new software and hardware components, including the F-16 commercial fire control computer and the plane's active electronically scanned radar.

According to DAPA, a total of 134 KF-16 jets are subject to the upgrade project. Other key upgrades include installing the Link-16 data exchange system and the multifunction display, and equipping GPS-guided weapons, such as the AIM-120C air-to-air missile and the Wind Corrected Munitions Dispenser.

The KF-16 is a Korean version of the F-16 built locally under license from Lockheed Martin in the 1990s.

The aircraft is a key part of the South Korean fighter fleet that includes 60 F-15K jets built by Boeing. South Korea plans to introduce 60 more fighter jets equipped with stealth functions under the F-X III competition, the report said.

The DAPA will open a separate bid to choose a supplier of the active electronically scanned array radar early next year. Northrop Grumman and Raytheon are vying for the radar deal, it added.

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SKorea  KF-16  BAE  
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