US-based company CPI Aerostructures has secured an indefinite-delivery / indefinite-quantity (IDIQ) contract from Textron unit Bell Helicopter to build engine cowl and support assemblies for the AH-1Z Viper attack helicopter.

The Bell AH-1Z Viper is a lethal anti-armour twin-engine attack helicopter deployed in service with the US Marine Corps.

The $14.8m contract is based on the estimated order quantity during the period of performance, which will end on 31 December 2020.

CPI Aerostructures president and chief executive officer Douglas J. McCrosson said: “This follow-on contract illustrates the success of our strategy to secure strong positions within key national security programmes, such as the AH-1Z, and then follow through with exceptional programme execution.

"This follow-on contract illustrates the success of our strategy to secure strong positions within key national security programmes."

“It is extremely satisfying that our focus on quality, value and customer service has resulted in CPI Aero continuing this work into the next decade.”

Having reached initial operational capability in September 2010, the AH-1Z Viper programme commenced its full-rate manufacturing in December the same year.

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In May 2016, Bell Helicopter was awarded a contract that included 16 units of AH-1Z helicopters.

The contract is a part of the US Marine Corps' H-1 Programme of Record, which covered the acquisition of 189 AH-1Z Viper attack helicopters and 160 UH-1Y Venom utility helicopters.

CPI Aerostructures has produced engine cowl and support assemblies for the AH-1Z Viper helicopters since 2011.