by Ben Posey
Residents in the west Fort Worth area have noticed a somewhat different aircraft flying through the skies this past week. The V-22 Osprey has been making touch and go landings and giving pilots some flight training hours at the NAS JRB.
Earlier this year it was reported that the Navy has added $1.4 billion to a Bell-Boeing contract to build 22 V-22 Ospreys in Texas.
The report stated that the contract modification includes fiscal 2013 funding for 17 MV-22s, the Marine Corps Osprey version, and four CV-22s for Air Force Special Operations.
Bell-Boeing is a joint venture between Textron Inc.’s Bell Helicopter business and Boeing Co. The U.S. military plans to use the tilt-rotor aircraft to replace older CH-46 helicopters.
More than 10 percent of the work will be performed in Amarillo, where Bell Helicopter also assembles utility and attack choppers for the military. Navy officials say about 25 percent of the work will be done in Fort Worth.
The deal also provides funding to help build 19 MV-22s and 18 CV-22s in fiscal 2014.