May 21, 2009 18:37 UTC
Lockheed Martin’s AGM-158 Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile (JASSM) was intended as a stealthy, inexpensive cruise missile that would let American aircraft attack well-defended targets – without putting themselves in the crosshairs of new long-range surface to air missile systems. The missile has been produced in quantity, and chosen by Australia.
The program has also enjoyed a very rocky development history. In 2005 it was threatened with cancellation, following a series of poor test results. By the end of 2007, the program was on an ongoing roller coaster of ups and downs with sharp media criticism and Lockheed Martin’s substantive reply to it. Reuters reports that the program is facing cancellation once again, in the wake of FY 2010 budget cuts that left only $82.2 million in funding to address reliability issues.
(click to view larger)
While the JASSM program was continued on the basis of military necessity, an alternative has emerged. Raytheon’s AGM-154 JSOW precision glide bomb has become a big success, adding new capabilities and new variants over time. A new AGM-154C-1-ER version adds a flush inlet to preserve its radar signature, and a small turbojet taken from their MALD decoy, in order to extend its range to 300 nautical miles/ 575 km. The JSOW-ER is considered to be less stealthy than JASSM, but it has definitely positioned itself as a reliable low-budget competitor, and a “good enough” alternative if JASSM fails.
May 21, 2009 16:00 UTC
CPKs on TRAMS
American Defense Systems Inc. (ADSI) in Hicksville, NY received a $9.9 million firm-fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/ indefinite-quantity contract with a maximum ordering quantity of 25 Add on Armor (AoA) Crew Protection Kits (CPKs), associated manuals and spares parts kits, for installation on Terex Corp.’s MAC-50 cranes. ADSI will perform the work at its Hicksville, NY, headquarters and expects to complete it by May 2012. Contract funds will not expire by the end of the current fiscal year. This contract is a sole source award to ADSI because it is the only manufacturer of the AoA CPKs. The Marine Corps Systems Command in Quantico, VA manages the contract (M67854-09-D-5038).
The 50-ton all-terrain MAC-50 cranes will be fitted with ADSI CPKs on both the large driver cab and on the smaller side cab for the crane operator. Approximately $2.5 million of the award will fund field service representatives over the term of the contract. CPKs feature windows of fully transparent armor, opaque armor siding, a combat lock, tool-less emergency egress windows, fortified door hinges and an integrated crew system. The CPKs are modular and can be applied to the vehicle either during its assembly, or as a retrofit in theater. ADSI employs field service representatives that are on the ground in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Kuwait to train soldiers on the proper installation techniques and offer on-going expertise and assistance.
This U.S. Marines Corps contract builds upon several recent U.S. military-related awards and orders received by ADSI over the last 6 months, which combined are valued at more than $54 million. This includes an order representing approximately one-third of a $10 million revenue expectation from JCB Construction Equipment for CPKs through 2010. See also ADSI news release.
May 21, 2009 13:05 UTC
CV-22 SEAL extraction
Bell-Boeing Joint Project Office in Amarillo, TX received a $7.3 million firm-fixed-price delivery order for one-time engineering services to retrofit 7 CV-22 aircraft per single configuration retrofit ECP V-22-0802. The order will bring the 7 aircraft to a Block B/10 configuration. The firm will also provide the associated retrofit kits for 3 CV-22 aircraft.
The CV-22 is the Air Force Special Operations version of the V-22 Osprey aircraft. The CV-22 fills a long-standing Air Force requirement to conduct long-range insertion and extraction missions. The CV-22 has twice the altitude and speed of current helicopters used in special operations. The Osprey can fly at 316 miles per hour in airplane mode and 115 miles per hour in helicopter mode. The aircraft’s ceiling is 26,000 feet.
Bell-Boeing plans to perform the work in Ridley Park, PA (60%), and Fort Worth, TX (40%) and expects to complete the work in November 2012. The Naval Air Systems Command in Patuxent River, MD manages the contract (N00019-07-G-0008).
May 21, 2009 12:10 UTC
PAC-3 test launch
Raytheon Co. in Andover, MA received an $8.8 million firm-fixed-price contract for 3 Patriot missile depot test equipment upgrades, and new depot test equipment, including installation and training. Raytheon is performing the work at the following MA facilities: Andover (50%), Tewksbury (20%), Sudbury (20%), and Burlington (10%), with an estimated completion date of June 08/15. Only one bid was solicited and received by U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Command, Army Contracting Command in Redstone Arsenal, AL (W31P4Q-09-C-0321).
Patriot, the foundation of the U.S. Army’s integrated air and missile defense architecture, is a medium-range all-weather system fielded to defeat flying threats or even ballistic missiles.