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Air Force receiving upgraded Mavericks

  |   Feb. 14, 2012 at 2:13 PM
SINGAPORE, Feb. 14 (UPI) -- Raytheon has restarted a production line to produce new and refurbished laser-guided Maverick missiles for the U.S. Air Force.

The A and B variants of the missile had been phased out of service as upgraded versions came into use.

"The combat-proven laser Maverick has demonstrated its effectiveness against frigate-size ships, small moving boats, tanks, fortified personnel and fast moving maneuvering vehicles in excess of 70 miles per hour," said Harry Schulte, vice president of Raytheon Missile Systems' Air Warfare Systems product line.

"We are focused on getting laser-guided Maverick to the U.S. warfighte, and hope to also provide this weapon to U.S. allies since it is available via both Direct Commercial Sales and Foreign Military Sales."

Raytheon said re-production was authorized following an Air Force and Navy Developmental Testing/Operational Testing program.

During testing program pilots fired 15 AGM-65E2/L laser-guided Maverick missiles at moving and stationary targets from F-16s, A-10s, the F/A-18 and AV-8B Harriers.

The refurbished and upgraded Mavericks -- with an enhanced laser seeker and new software to reduce the risk of collateral damage will be delivered to the Air Force this year, Raytheon said.

Raytheon announced the reopening at the production line from the Singapore Air Show.

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