In 2003, Raytheon UK operation won the GBP 120 million pound contract to develop and produce Paveway IV, beating Boeing’s INS/GPS guided JDAM. The GPS/INS and laser-guided 500-pound bombs are a British project, and will add a number of other enhancements, including longer range than previous Paveway versions.
The British military had wanted to deploy Raytheon’s latest Paveway IV bombs in Afghanistan by September 2007, on board its newly-upgraded Harrier GR9 aircraft. Unfortunately, testing problems with Thales UK’s Aurora fuze removed that option. The MoD found a way to deploy the smart bombs with lesser capabilities by December 2007, and eventually deployed full Paveway IVs on its Harriers in Afghanistan. The weapon is now ready for use with its Tornado GR4 strike aircraft, which are replacing the Harriers, and has been qualified on the RAF’s Eurofighters.