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Lockheed, Raytheon tie-up for US missile interceptors programme

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The Patriot missile system.

HUNTSVILLE/TUCSON, US (BNS): US defence majors Lockheed Martin and Raytheon Company have decided to jointly bid for the country's ground-based missile interceptors programme.

Responding to an amended draft request for proposals for the ground-based midcourse defense (GMD) development and sustainment contract issued by the US Missile Defence Agency (USMDA) in May this year, the two companies said they will jointly pursue the programme.

“As strategic partners for GMD development and sustainment, the companies will apply their proven experience to ensure the reliability and readiness of the GMD element of the Ballistic Missile Defense System,” Lockheed said.

As a strategic partner to Lockheed Martin, Raytheon’s role will include systems engineering, development, manufacturing, testing, training and operations and sustainment at all of the key GMD sites, it said.

Lockheed and Raytheon have jointly developed and tested a number of missile interceptors to date. These include the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD), Aegis ballistic missile defense (Standard Missile-3), Patriot and Patriot Advanced Capability-3 and GMD Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle.

The USMDA has announced that it will issue a final RFP this summer before awarding the contract in 2011. The contract entails development, manufacturing, test, training, operations support and sustainment support of the GMD element.

Boeing, which is presently the prime contractor for US’ GMD programme, has also teamed up with Northrop Grumman to pursue the project.

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