Boeing Receives U.S. Navy Multiyear Contract for F/A-18 Production

March 20, 2019 – With a three-year contract award for 78 F/A-18 Block III Super Hornets, Boeing [NYSE: BA] will play a vital role in the U.S. Navy’s fleet modernization efforts. The Block III configuration adds capability upgrades that include enhanced network capability, longer range, reduced radar signature, an advanced cockpit system and an enhanced communication system. Boeing will begin converting existing Block II Super Hornets to Block III early in the next decade. The fighter’s life also will be extended from 6,000 hours to 10,000 hours. This new multi-year…

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Developmental testing completed on Small Diameter Bomb II

Raytheon Company has completed developmental testing on the Small Diameter Bomb II, a key step toward bringing this new capability to fighter pilots. Government confidence testing, a prerequisite for operational testing, is scheduled to be completed this year. Raytheon has also begun work on the SDB II™ second production lot after completing delivery of Lot 1 in 2017. The weapon gives pilots the ability to destroy moving targets on the battlefield. Its seeker detects, classifies, tracks and destroys targets, even in adverse weather conditions from standoff ranges. “We call SDB…

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Lockheed Martin’s Long Range Anti-Ship Missile Marks Another Successful Flight Test

Lockheed Martin successfully fired production-configuration Long Range Anti-Ship Missiles (LRASM) from a U.S. Air Force B-1B bomber. During the test over the Sea Range at Point Mugu, California, B-1B aircrew simultaneously launched two LRASMs against multiple maritime targets, meeting the primary test objectives, including target impact. “This continued success with LRASM provides confidence in its upcoming early operational capability milestone, putting a proven, unmatched munition into the U.S. Navy and U.S. Air Force inventories,” said David Helsel, LRASM program director at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. “The successful flight…

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Lockheed Martin to Upgrade IRST21 Sensor System for U.S. Navy Fighter Aircraft

Lockheed Martin recently received two contracts to upgrade its IRST21 sensor system for use on the U.S. Navy’s F/A-18E/F fleet. Awarded by aircraft prime contractor Boeing, the Block II contracts provide up to $100 million for developing advanced software, performing hardware upgrades and delivering prototypes. These efforts will further enhance IRST21’s proven detection, tracking and ranging capabilities in radar-denied environments. “The U.S. Navy’s strategic block upgrade program enables us to continue advancing our technology and rapidly deliver it to the warfighter,” said Paul Lemmo, vice president of Fire Control/Special Operations…

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Nimitz Completes Historic 100,000th Catapult Shot

You can feel the excitement on the flight deck. As the jet engines roar an F/A-18E Super Hornet, from the “Blue Diamonds” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 146, goes soaring into the air. This launch was a bit more special than the other approximately 30 launches performed daily on USS Nimitz (CVN 68) during its 2017 deployment. It was historic. The ship successfully completed its 100,000th aircraft launch from Catapult Two Sept. 25, marking the second time, since the ship’s commissioning in 1975, that that milestone has been achieved. Catapult…

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