By Rob Koon, NAVAIR Public Affairs
The United States Marine Corps and Naval Air Systems Command took delivery of the thirteenth and last military version of the Cessna Citation Encore, the UC-35D, at the Cessna Aircraft Company production plant in Wichita, Kansas on March 21, 2006.
During the acceptance ceremony, Mr. Pat Sullivan, Director Government and Special Missions Sales told the audience, On November 22, 1999, we delivered Ultra Unit 524, as the first UC-35C to the Marine Corps and today we deliver the last of 13 Citations to the Marine Corp, Encore Unit 696. This program broke new ground in Government Acquisition. It was one of the first programs awarded under the new Department of Defense (DoD) Commercial Item Acquisition initiative. This was an attempt to streamline Government acquisition to be more in line with the way commercial companies do business, and save the Government money.
Delivery of this aircraft signals the end of a highly successful aircraft production program for the military. All the aircraft have been delivered within cost and on schedule since the commencement of the program in 1999, said Capt. Mark Stone, Program Manager, Support and Commercial Derivative Aircraft Program Office, PMA-207. For the last seven years these aircraft and the accompanying spare parts and maintenance support has met the high tempo worldwide operational demands. In addition, they also have the distinction of being Naval Aviations least expensive aircraft to operate. Cessna Aircraft should be very proud of the efforts they have made in support of the Global War on Terrorism and the Marine Corps.
In closing, Mr. Sullivan stated, Cessna would like to be on record as noting that we have experienced nothing but competent professionalism from the Government agencies associated with the UC-35 Program, including: U.S Army Program Manager for Fixed Wing, USMC Deputy Commandant for Aviation Branch for Plans and Policies (APP), and Branch for Aviation Weapons Requirements (APW), Naval Air Systems Commands Program Office for Support and Commercially Derivative Aircraft (PMA-207), Defense Contract Management Agency and the Army and Marine UC-35 operational units.
The UC-35D Encore provides a significant increase in range, speed and payload to the Marine Corps airlift fleet. It is a stateof-the-art, twin turbofan commercial aircraft certified by the Federal Aviation Administration. The aircraft has a range up to 1,800 nautical miles, a maximum speed of 525 knots, and a payload of up to 2,750 lbs.
This aircraft represents Cessnas commitment to the commercial and military market of continuous improvement to its product line with the incorporation of numerous improvements over the UC-35C Ultra. The Encore has an improved avionics suite, quieter and more fuel-efficient engines with greater thrust, a more rugged landing gear, improved anti-icing system, increased payload, more seated headroom, and an estimated 15 percent lower maintenance cost.
Utilizing the Performance Based Logistics (PBL) model, the UC-35 program employs a long-term life cycle contractor support (LCCS) concept. The LCCS concept allows the Navy/Marine Corps to take advantage of the available support in the private sector and establish critical long-term supplier relationships to maintain and support these aircraft globally.
PHOTO: The Marine Corps, Navy, Army, Cessna, and Dyncorp UC-35 Acquisition Team.