AF awards contract to begin designing next Air Force One aircraft Published Sept. 13, 2017 Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs WASHINGTON (AFNS) -- The Air Force awarded a contract modification for just under $600 million to Boeing Sept. 12, 2017, for preliminary design efforts for the next presidential aircraft. The contract modification includes the design to incorporate a mission communication system, electrical power upgrades, a medical facility, an executive interior, a self-defense system and autonomous ground operations capabilities into two commercial Boeing 747-8s. These aircraft will replace the two aging VC-25A (747-200) presidential support aircraft. “Following the award of the contract to purchase two commercial 747-8 aircraft, this contract award is the next major step forward toward ensuring an overall affordable program,” said Maj. Gen. Duke Richardson, Presidential Airlift Recapitalization program executive officer. Under this contract action, Boeing and their suppliers will complete the initial design of the future Air Force One. The Air Force is committed to working with Boeing to ensure the PAR program meets presidential airlift mission requirements, as well as the president's affordability expectations. The Air Force is also working with Boeing on a follow-on contract modification, referred to as the Engineering and Manufacturing Development contract modification, which will continue the program through detailed design, aircraft modification, test and delivery of two presidential mission-ready aircraft. The EMD contract modification is planned to be awarded in the Summer of 2018. These aircraft will provide the president of the United States with safe, reliable and affordable air transportation equipped with all mission capabilities necessary to continuously execute the constitutional responsibilities of commander-in-chief, head of state, and chief executive.