U.S. Department of Defense contractor, Raytheon Technologies Corp., has been awarded a $60.4 million-dollar federal contract for the development of a surface to air weapon system, in conjunction with the German manufacturer Diehl Defense GmbH. Work is expected to begin this year in Tucson, Arizona and will be completed by the end of 2021. The agreement signed by both the U.S. and Germany provides for joint design, production, upgrades and distribution, including select software additions that would allow the weapons system to effectively target alternative aircraft such as helicopters.

The scope of the project calls for engineering support to the MK-31 RAM guided missile weapons system, which involves negotiating bugs through software-based logistics and design components. The MK-31 system is designed to intercept incoming projectile weapons such as enemy cruise missiles, using infrared-driven homing surface to air missiles that can be launched from American naval ships, including aircraft carriers and other amphibious assault ships.

The project calls for 1,600 missiles and 115 of the platform launchers that project them, which will be another major contribution to Raytheon’s already robust year that includes a $738 billion dollar contract under the National Defense Authorization Act, following the company’s merger with United Technologies earlier this May.

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