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Raytheon awarded $91.8M contract for RAM ship defense missile systems

By
Allen Cone
The aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt launches a Rolling Airframe Missile in the Atlantic Ocean on August 19, 2014. Photo courtesy U.S. Navy/Flickr
The aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt launches a Rolling Airframe Missile in the Atlantic Ocean on August 19, 2014. Photo courtesy U.S. Navy/Flickr

March 7 (UPI) -- Raytheon was awarded a $91.8 million contract to supply the U.S. Navy with parts and spares for the Rolling Airframe Missile, which protects ships from planes, helicopters, missiles and small surface vessels.

The contract is for the Block 2 guided missile round pack, the Defense Department announced Wednesday.

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The Block 2, which was deployed in 2015, is among three RIM-116 configurations, which are part of a system developed through an international cooperative program between the United States and Germany.

The RIM-116 RAM is fully operational in the United States and German, as well as other allied navies that include South Korea, Greece, Egypt, United Arab Emirates, Turkey and Japan, with more than 5,000 missiles produced, according to the U.S. Navy. They are aboard more than 165 ships ranging from fast patrol boats to aircraft carriers, and are being installed on a majority of new ship classes.

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Together, the MK 44 guided missile round pack and the MK 49 guided missile launching system contain 21 missiles, according to Raytheon. Each missile weighs 194.4 pounds and travels at supersonic speed.

In addition to Raytheon, German defense contractors MBDA Missile Systems, Diehl BGT Defence and RAM-System GmbH also share in costs and efforts for development, production and maintenance of the weapon.

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Forty-four percent of work on the contract will be performed in Ottobrunn, Germany. In the United States, 35 percent will be done in Tucson, Ariz., and 9 percent in Rocket Center, W.Va. The remaining 12 percent will be done in other cities across the United States, as well as in Scotland.

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Work on the contract is expected to be completed by November 2021. Naval fiscal 2019 weapons procurement funding in the full amount has been obligated at time of award and will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year.

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