CONECT Creates Production Link

Boeing announced on Monday the completion of all flight testing needed for the B-52 Combat Network Communications Technology program to proceed into low-rate initial production. “Completion of the LRIP flight test phase means CONECT is ready to be reviewed by our customer for initial production authorization,” said Scot Oathout, Boeing’s B-52 program director. The company anticipates that LRIP authorization will come in mid 2012. The flight testing took place at Edwards AFB, Calif. CONECT enables B-52 aircrew to change a mission as well as the target of a weapon while the bomber is in flight. It provides the aircrew with real-time situational awareness via several new communication data links and full-color LCD displays. “CONECT increases B-52 operational effectiveness by providing improved mission flexibility, increased situational awareness, and new network-centric capabilities. In addition, CONECT paves the way for easier integration of future upgrades,” said Oathout.