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Raytheon delivers first RAM launcher ever to Latin America

By
Tauren Dyson
Amphibious transport dock ship USS Arlington fires a rolling airframe missile during a live fire missile exercise for the Carrier Strike Group 4 composite training unit exercise. Photo by Information Systems Technician Seaman Jeanae Torres/U.S. Navy
Amphibious transport dock ship USS Arlington fires a rolling airframe missile during a live fire missile exercise for the Carrier Strike Group 4 composite training unit exercise. Photo by Information Systems Technician Seaman Jeanae Torres/U.S. Navy

Oct. 23 (UPI) -- A new Rolling Airframe Missile, or RAM, launcher from Raytheon Company has arrived in Mexico Tuesday, marking the first RAM delivery to a Latin American country.

The lightweight, surface-to-air missile will play an important role in Mexico sureing up the defense of Patrulla Oceánica de Largo Alcance, its long-range off-shore patrol vessel program, according to Raytheon.

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The Mexican Navy will use the RAM Block 2 supersonic, fire-and-forget missile to counter enemy anti-ship missiles. Its newest version features a larger rocket motor, advanced control section and an improved radio frequency receiver.

The RAM has been deployed in eight countries, on more than 165 ships, from 500-ton fast attack craft to 95,000-ton aircraft carriers, according to Raytheon.

"RAM Block 2 protects ships against a long list of constantly evolving threats," Mitch Stevison, vice president for Raytheon Air and Missile Defense Systems, said in a press release. "With RAM protecting its frigate, Mexico not only enhances its maritime posture, but they also expand their naval support of national security and defense of critical sea lanes."

The State Department in January approved the sale of rolling airframe missile systems to Mexico as part of a $98.4 million package that includes Harpoon block II surface launched missiles and Mark 54 torpedoes, as well as 23 RAM systems.

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