Aug. 24 (UPI) -- Technical Systems Integration of Chesapeake, Va., has received a $10.6 million contract for depot-level repair, overhaul, and modification of MK-105 magnetic minesweeping gear.
The contract, announced Thursday by the Department of Defense, includes options that, if exercised, would bring the cumulative value of the deal to $54 million. Work will be performed in Panama City, Fla., and is expected to be completed by August 2019.
Navy fiscal 2018 operations and maintenance funding in the amount of $2.6 million will be obligated at time of award
The MK105 Magnetic Influence Minesweeping System is a catamaran hydrofoil which is towed behind the MH-53E Sea Dragon helicopter. It is used to detect mines that use magnetic sensors to target the metallic hulls of ships before detonating.
Magnetic mines were invented by Germany during World War II and were used in huge quantities in British sea lanes. They could be moored tens of meters underwater and use their sensors to detonate when a ship passed by.
They inflicted great damage on British shipping and required a massive research drive to counter. Mine warfare played a large role in the conflict, with both sides laying large minefields surrounding British and German ports.