Bell, Boeing Win $544Mln Contract to Build Osprey Combat Aircraft for Japan

© AP Photo / Eugene HoshikoMV-22 Ospreys are seen at the U.S. Marine Corps Futenma Air Station and the surrounding area from an observation deck at a park in Ginowan, Okinawa Prefecture on southern Japan
MV-22 Ospreys are seen at the U.S. Marine Corps Futenma Air Station and the surrounding area from an observation deck at a park in Ginowan, Okinawa Prefecture on southern Japan - Sputnik International
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Bell Helicopter and Boeing have received a more than half a billion dollar US Navy contract to build four MV-22 Osprey tilt rotors for Japan, the US Department of Defense announced.

WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The tiltrotor Osprey can travel at airplane speeds and hover like a helicopter for vertical landings on a carrier decks.

"Bell-Boeing Joint Project Office, Amarillo, Texas, is being awarded a $544.6 million… contract for the…manufacture and delivery of four MV-22 tilt rotor aircraft… [for] of the government of Japan," the announcement said on Tuesday.

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However, the US Marine Corps variant of the Osprey has come under heavy criticism, with many refusing to fly an aircraft they consider defective, and a deathtrap.

Since 2007, Osprey defects have been linked to crashes and accidents resulting in 36 fatalities, including six during combat situations.

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