TEWKSBURY, Mass., Jan. 27 (UPI) -- An advanced surface-to-air missile system developed by Raytheon and Norway's Kongsberg Defense Systems is being purchased by the Sultanate of Oman.
The purchase order -- a direct sales contract -- is valued at $1.28 billion and includes provisions for the supply of ground support equipment, training and technical assistance, Raytheon reported.
"The Sultanate of Oman's competitive selection of Raytheon's National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile System validates the superior performance, system adaptability and overall security that NASAMS provides," said Dan Crowley, president of Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems. "Raytheon is committed to delivering the exceptional defense capabilities of NASAMS to Oman."
NASAMS is a modular, networked ground-based medium to long-range air defense system for AIM 120 AMRAAM missiles. It works with the Patriot Air and Missile Defense System and the Hawk Air Defense system and is used by Norway, the Netherlands, Spain and Finland. It is also deployed by the U.S. military in the National Capital Region.
A NASAM system consists of missile launchers, radars, a fire control center and a tactical control vehicle.
Raytheon said work on supplying the system to Oman will be conducted by Raytheon at its Integrated Air Defense Center in Andover, Mass., and in Kongsberg, Norway.
Kongsberg is a sub-contractor of NASAMS elements to Raytheon. Its work on the Oman project is worth more than $440 million.
"The cooperation with Raytheon has over the years developed into a close and strong partnership with a large potential market for our air defense solutions," said Walter Qvam, chief executive officer of Kongsberg. "This agreement with Oman is the single largest supply contract in Kongsberg's history and is strong evidence of NASAMS' international position.
Added Harald Annestad, president in Kongsberg Defense Systems: "NASAMS is the most sold air defense system in its class in the last 10 years. Its modularity and open architecture enable a continuous evolution in performance to meet the latest threats."
The contract for the system was signed at a ceremony attended by Mohammed bin Nasser al-Rasbi, secretary general at the Omani Ministry of Defense, Air Vice Marshal Matar bin Ali al-Obaidani, commander of the Royal Air Force of Oman, and others.
Neither the number of systems ordered by Oman nor their schedule for delivery have been announced.
The original NASAMS program by Raytheon and Kongsberg began as a joint effort on behalf of the Royal Norwegian Air Force. It became officially operational in 1998.
Raytheon, in announcing the contract with Oman late last week, said it was awarded in the fourth quarter of last year.