DALLAS, June 27 (UPI) -- Phase One of a U.S. Army program to boost crew protection and update mobile rocket launchers is being performed by Lockheed Martin.
Under a $27.1 million award to the company, Lockheed will upgrade, assemble and test seven prototype vehicles.
The Multiple Launch Rocket System M270A's crew cab will be replaced, expanded in size by 40 percent and feature new energy-absorbing seats. Lockheed said it will move the fire control panel to provide commonality with the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System launcher and enhance survivability through extensive armoring in the new cab.
"These improvements will ensure the M270-series launcher remains relevant, effective and reliable while protecting crews from new and evolving threats well into the middle of the 21st century," said Scott Arnold, vice president of precision fires in Lockheed Martin's Missiles and Fire Control business.
A production contract for more than 200 vehicles is expected to be issued following completion of the first phase of development.
Working with Lockheed on the project will be BAE Systems Land and Armaments LP.
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