Raytheon Receives $1 Billion Navy Contract
The United States Navy has recently awarded the Raytheon Aircraft Manufacturing Company, a major American defense contractor and manufacturer of weapons as well as military and commercial electronics, a $1 billion contract that will require the company to build 15 engineering development models of its future electronic warfare pod, the Next Generation Jammer (NGJ). This billion dollar contract is scheduled to have completed work by December of 2020, as the Navy will be initiating operations with the electronic warfare pod on the Boeing EA-18G Growler.
This contract was announced on April 13 by the Department of Defense (DO) and under this contract, Raytheon will be manufacturing both the 14 aero-mechanical test pods as well as the engineering development models in order to verify the aircraft flying capabilities with the pod attached underwing and “pod safe separation.” Manufacturing will take place at Raytheon’s facility in El Segundo, California. On April 7, the Department of Defense also announced a $19.9 million contract that was awarded to the Boeing Company in order to initiate the preliminary integration work required for the EA-18G electronic warfare aircraft. The Next Generation Jammer is intended to replace the continuously updated and long-servicing ALQ-99 tactical jamming pod. The United States Navy hopes to utilize the latest pod in three separate increments which represent a variety of radio frequency ranges.
These ranges start with Increment 1 (mid-band) in 2021, followed by Increment 2 (low-band), and ultimately Increment 3 (high-band). The program cost is estimated to be valued at $7.4 billion, with $3.3 billion intended for research and development as well as $4 billion intended to acquire 128 systems. The contract authority, the Naval Air Systems Command (Navair), has announced on April 5 that Increment 1 received approval from the undersecretary of defense for acquisition, technology, and logistics in order to continue onto the next stage of development. The Naval Air Systems Command anticipates on conducting a critical design review on the system in 2017 so that they can finalize the design for fabrication and assembly of the test models. In March of 2019, the initial test of a fully functional jamming pod is scheduled to take place.