The V-22 Osprey has attracted both praise and criticism during its long journey through development toward front-line deployment. Its characteristics have also had an impact on other weapons programs being developed for use with the aircraft. This article deals with two of those programs being developed to help strengthen the USMC’s badly eroded artillery capabilities.
One is the $74 million Internally Transported Vehicle (ITV) program; the United States Marine Corps says testing on American Growler, Inc’s vehicle is on track. The ITV – often incorrectly identified as the “Growler” – fits in the narrow belly of the V-22 Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft. The Marine Corps eventually expects to field about 600 to 700 of the two-ton, $120,000-a-copy tow trucks if they are accepted for fielding. ITVs will be delivered in two basic configurations: a Light Strike Variant (LSV), designed for Marine Corps infantry and reconnaissance battalions; and, the Expeditionary Fire Support System (EFSS) Prime Mover (PM), designed to tow the EFSS 120mm rifled mortar and the EFSS ammunition trailer. A decision to field them should be made by October 2007, a Marine Corps spokesman said.
the JSOW “almost-a-missile” precision glide bomb is a family of weapons delivered in multiple variants. The AGM-154C/JSOW-C adds an imaging infrared seeker for last-stage high precision and a Broach multi-stage warhead, which packs both area blast-fragmentation and hard target penetration capability. JSOW-C is in full-rate production, and achieved initial operation capability in February 2005. JSOW Block III, otherwise known as the AGM-154C-1, would add moving target capability for land and sea targets via improved seekers and seeker algorithms, and a 2-way weapons data link. This ensures that targeting commands can be received, and missile health, status and position transmitted back, right up to the time of impact. That option is currently found only at the high end of the cruise missile market, giving the AGM-154C-1 an interesting positioning as a cheaper short-range alternative.
All of which explains why Raytheon Missile Systems in Tucson, AZ received a $93.8 million cost-plus-fixed-fee delivery order against a previously issued basic ordering agreement (N00019-05-G-0008) for the Joint Standoff Weapon AGM-154C-1 Block III Network Enabled Weapon Moving Target Capability and Seeker Obsolescence Redesign. Efforts to be provided under this delivery order include the design, development, integration, test and delivery of an AGM-154C-1 network enabled weapon moving target capability and qualification and production of a replacement for the obsolete seeker processor and detector components (Phase I). In addition, this order provides for delivery of a validated engineering change proposal (Phase II). Work will be performed in Tucson, AZ, and is expected to be complete in July 2009. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, MD issued the contract.
Earlier this year, Raytheon competitively awarded a related subcontract to Rockwell Collins, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, for the development and qualification of a dual waveform (UHF and Link 16) weapon data link called Strike Link (see also Sept 18/07 announcement). The Raytheon team plans to use this new data link in several weapons. Raytheon’s May 24/07 release.
1,000 Krasnopol shells were bought from M/s KBP Instrument Design Bureau in Tula, Russia under a 1999 contract, and delivered in May 2000 at a cost Rs 151 crores (about $34.4 million then). Two years later, New Delhi bought another 2,000 shells, with plans firmed up for buying another 6,000. Unfortunately…
Hawaiian Dredging Construction Co., Inc. in Honolulu, HI received $7 million for firm-fixed-price Task Order 0005 under a previously awarded indefinite-delivery/ indefinite-quantity multiple award construction contract (N62742-04-D-1302). They’ll repair Pier K-8 at the Fleet Industrial Supply Center in Pearl Harbor, and efforts will include removal work, concrete rehabilitation of existing curbs, beams, slabs, piles and incidental related work. The job also includes structural retrofit of the pier to install concrete bearing piles; concrete fender piles, plastic lumber chocks, blockings and accessories; floating pneumatic fenders; stainless steel ladders, steel brackets and fiberglass structural platform; permanent oil spill containment system; and other miscellaneous work.
Work is expected to be completed by April 2008, but contract funds will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Hawaii in Pearl Harbor, HI issued the contract.