The United States Air Force is conducting market research to identify potential sources that possess the expertise, capabilities, and experience to meet the requirements of the next generation Presidential fixed-wing aircraft. The current VC-25 Air Force One, based on the 747-200 airframe, was purchased in 1987 and delivered in 1990 with a 30 year design life. As 747-200s have been retired from airline service, parts and maintenance are becoming increasingly expensive. The Air Force conducted an Analysis of Alternatives to examine if it would be more cost effective to maintain the current Air Force One, or to buy a new aircraft. Given the diminishing parts supplier base, increasing maintenance time, and system upgrades that would be necessary to meet future air traffic control requirements, it was found that replacing the VC-25 was the most cost effective option.
The PAR aircraft will be a new-build, commercial derivative, wide-body aircraft, uniquely modified to meet the current and projected requirements for the worldwide transportation of the Office of the President. Modifications regarding passenger communications, information systems, interior work & rest environment, and aerial refueling must be accomplished before delivery of the aircraft. The delivery of the first operationally capable aircraft is required in FY17, with delivery of the second and third aircraft in FY19 and FY21, respectively. The PAR aircraft must maintain the highest possible mission capable rate.
The PAR aircraft will provide the President of the United States, staff, and guests with safe and reliable air transportation with the appropriate level of security and communications capability. Mission communications must provide secure, interoperable command, control, and communications, using net-centric architectures.
The interior must provide a work and rest environment suitable for the President, guests, and traveling staff. The interior configuration must provide the President with ample work and conference areas (including sleeping, lavatory, shower, and dressing areas). The interior must be accessible to the physically impaired. The interior must be configured with galleys that provide the aircrew with the capability to prepare, serve, and store food and beverages. It must also provide for housekeeping and waste disposal.
The modified aircraft will be Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) certified, and will meet projected aviation requirements to conduct worldwide flight operations in all civil and military airspace as defined by the FAA, International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), and Department of Defense (DOD).