Raytheon-Lockheed gets $10M lightweight launcher contract

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(Source: Arizona Daily Star) (Source: Arizona Daily Star)
(Source: Arizona Daily Star) (Source: Arizona Daily Star)

A Raytheon-Lockheed team has been awarded a $10 million Army contract for work on a lightweight launcher in an attempt to upgrade the Javelin missile system.

The Raytheon/Lockheed Martin Javelin Joint Venture, based at Raytheon Missile Systems in Tucson, will work through September 2019 on reducing the weight of the Javelin Command Launch Unit, the Arizona Daily Star reported.

The project will include management, engineering and design work for the portable Javelin anti-tank missile system, according to the Pentagon contract.

First produced in 1996, the shoulder-fired Javelin has been fired in combat more than 2,000 times by U.S. and coalition forces in Iraq and Afghanistan since the 2003 invasion of Iraq.

The Javelin also is used by about 20 allied nations.

"Javelin is combat proven and has a greater than 94 percent reliability rate," according to Raytheon's website. "It can be deployed from multiple platforms and used in all weather, day or night operations."

The weapon can be used to fire upon tanks, moving vehicles and low-flying helicopters.

In addition, the Raytheon-Lockheed team has been working on improved missile electronics, a new multi-purpose warhead and an uncooled infrared target seeker for the Javelin.

Raytheon Missile Systems recently was awarded a $75 million Air Force contract for Small Diameter Bomb II technical support. Work on the all-weather, precision guided glide bomb will be performed in Tucson and is expected to be complete by July 2024, the Defense Department said.

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