$48.4M for Rapid Aerostat Deployment System
The JLENS is a set of radars and sensors mounted on an aerostat blimp and capable of networking via Cooperative Engagement Capability to enhance both air and missile defense. And a recent Air Force Study gave the thumbs-up to greater use of blimps in the U.S. military.
Raytheon Co. in Bedford, MA just received a cost-plus-fixed-fee contract for the Rapid Aerostat Initial Deployment System (RAID), a smaller version of the JLENS aerostat that has been deployed to Afghanistan and Iraq. When equipped with infrared sensors as well, the JLENS adds anti-terrorist surveillance capabilities to its portfolio. The U.S. DoD’s June 14/05 release cited a figure of $36.3 million, while Raytheon’s June 21/05 release cites a $48.4 million contract to provide 41 RAID systems plus systems engineering and life cycle support.
In addition to supplying the 41 systems, Raytheon is responsible for implementing a systems engineering approach on the RAID Program, linking it to other existing Army systems and providing a “cradle to grave” life cycle support capability.
Work under the contract will be done by Raytheon’s Integrated Defense Systems in Andover, MA and Huntsville, AL, along with support from Raytheon Technical Services Company LLC. Major suppliers involved in this contract include TCOM in Columbia, MD and US Tower in Wichita, KS.
Work is expected to be complete by April 30, 2006. This was a sole source contract initiated on May 17, 2005. The U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command in Huntsville, AL issued the contract (W9113M-05-C-0188).