The first 737 AEW&C aircraft modified by
Turkish Aerospace Industries for Turkey's
Peace Eagle program lands after making its
first flight 7/17/08.
Photo: Turkish Aerospace Industries
7/17/2008 - ST. LOUIS -- The Boeing Company has
successfully conducted the first flight test of the
first 737 Airborne Early Warning and Control
(AEW&C) aircraft modified by Turkish Aerospace
Industries (TAI) in Ankara for Turkey's Peace Eagle
During the 2.5-hour flight from Ankara on July 16,
pilot Ron Johnston and first officer Mark Mitchell
performed a series of functional tests that verified
the airworthiness of the aircraft's systems and
The aircraft included newly installed aerial
refueling capability, an advanced Multi-role
Electronically Scanned Array (MESA) antenna, ventral
fins and mission system equipment.
"This flight is a tribute to the skill and hard work
of TAI while successfully executing a very complex
modification effort in transforming a 737-700 into an
AEW&C platform," said Mark Ellis, Boeing Peace
Eagle program manager.
Boeing will validate the aircraft's mission system
over the next several weeks, before painting the plane
with Turkish Air Force markings.
The Peace Eagle program includes four 737 AEW&C
aircraft plus ground support segments for mission crew
training, mission support and system maintenance.
Boeing modified the first aircraft at its facilities
in Seattle. TAI is modifying the remaining three
aircraft in Ankara.
The 737-700 features 21st century avionics,
navigation equipment and flight deck features. Because
of its advanced technology, the aircraft requires
minimal downtime for maintenance. The 737 series has a
worldwide base of suppliers, parts and support
In addition to Northrop Grumman's MESA antenna with
integrated identification friend-or-foe capabilities,
the aircraft features a flexible, open architecture
for cost-effective future upgrades, an extensive
communications suite and aerial refueling capability.
Source: Boeing Press Release