The U.S. is prepared to sell one of its premier airborne signals intelligence capabilities to the U.K.
Under a foreign military sale now under discussion, the U.K. would acquire three of the highly sophisticated aircraft capable of intercepting and analyzing communications and radar signals.
The proposed $1.1 billion deal would see three KC-135Rs being converted into Rivet Joints. L-3 in Greenville, Tex., would do the bulk of the work.
The deal would also provide ground distributed processing stations and the airborne capability extension system. The three aircraft would also feature a range of communications systems ,including five Link-16 Joint Tactical Information Distribution Terminals and 18 ARC-210 radios.
The Pentagon, in its notice to Congress, says "the United Kingdom requests this capability to provide for the defense of its deployed troops, regional security, and interoperability" with the U.S.
The U.K. has been using Nimrod R.1s for signals intelligence up to this point.