Aug. 3 (UPI) -- Lockheed Martin Missile and Fire Control has been awarded a $161.4 million contract for the production of launch assemblies for the Army Tactical Missile System surface-to-surface missile, the Department of Defense announced on Wednesday.
The contract is part of the Service Life Extension Program for aging components of the missile system. Work will be conducted at sites across the U.S. with an estimated completion date of Feb. 3, 2020. The Army has already obligated $161.4 million in procurement funds for the program.
The Army Tactical Missile System is a surface-to-surface guided missile deployed by the M270 MLRS and M142 HIMARS multiple launch rocket systems. It uses GPS and inertial guidance to strike point targets at long ranges with a high degree of accuracy.
The most recent variants of the missile have a range of nearly 200 miles and carry penetrating unitary high explosive warheads for hardened targets. The U.S. Army has announced plans to convert ATACMS missiles to an anti-ship role for forward defense of coastal bases.
ATACMS has been in service since the 1980s and was used in combat operations during the first Gulf War and the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. It is expected to eventually be replaced by the Long Range Precision Fires missile system which would have longer range and improved guidance systems.