Airborne Systems successfully completed the first three project milestones in the program to deliver a new troop parachute system for the French Airborne Forces, it was announced at Eurosatory today.
The ‘Ensemble de Parachutage du Combattant’ (EPC) is replacing a parachute system that has been in service for more than 20 years. Airborne Systems won the multi-million Euro contract from the Direction Générale de l’Armement (DGA) procurement executive of the French Ministry of Defence earlier this year - the first Airborne Systems contract in France - to deliver more than 15,000 parachute systems as part of a multi-year programme.
Chris Rowe, Managing Director for Airborne Systems Europe comments: “Timescale was the clear challenge from the start - to manufacture a new system along with all the support items within four months from contract award to support the DGA project timescales was always going to be a tough task. We achieved this by creating a dedicated Airborne Systems project team, supported by a very competent and established supply chain.
“By establishing close working relationships with our key subcontractors, who are all based in the European Union and share our desire to meet these challenging timescales, we were able to develop a very responsive material supply chain.”
As a result, the third project milestone – supply of equipment to support the EXTO (Expérimentation Technico-Opérationnelle) phase - was achieved through the delivery of 250 complete EPC, as well as 60 main canopy and 60 reserve for training purposes, together with a complete set of training equipment, support equipment for packing and through-life servicing, multiple spare parts and sub-assemblies to support the EXTO activity.
Previous milestones comprised acceptance of a management and quality plan, followed by the definition and technical documentation required for the industrial program for the EPC.
EPC, the first Airborne Systems contract for the French Airborne Forces, is a complete system developed for the French Army for the delivery of soldiers by parachute. It comprises a main parachute, a reserve parachute and an equipment carrying assembly.
Airborne Systems is also currently working on the largest of three contracts from the US Department of Defense to manufacture the new advanced tactical assault troop parachute system that it has designed for the US Army, the T-11.