Boeing recently received a $22.7 million modification to an existing U.S. Navy contract for more than 2,300 Laser Joint Direct Attack Munition (Laser JDAM) sensors, starting full-rate production to meet the Navyís Direct Attack Moving Target Capability program requirement.
JDAM is a low-cost, modular guidance kit that converts unguided free-fall bombs into near precision-guided weapons. Laser functionality boosts the weapon’s effectiveness against moving targets, maritime threats and other relocatable targets.
“The Boeing JDAM has been successfully employed by U.S. war fighters and allies around the globe for more than a decade,” said Debbie Rub, Boeing vice president and general manager, Missiles and Unmanned Airborne Systems. “The advanced capability of Laser JDAM offers our customers unparalleled accuracy and flexibility against a wider range of emerging threats on todayís ever-changing battlefields.”
“Proven in combat, Boeingís Laser JDAM attacks moving targets accurately and reliably with minimal collateral damage,” said Charlie Davis, Laser JDAM program manager for Boeing. “Adding the laser sensor is an affordable option that’s easy for ordnance crews to install and straightforward to use by pilots already familiar with JDAM.”
Naval Air Systems Command awarded the firm-fixed price contract modification on July 17. Deliveries under this contract begin in spring 2013 and continue through spring 2014.
Boeing completed the development and testing cycle for Laser JDAM less than 17 months after the capability was identified as an urgent operational need in early 2007. The company delivered the first production laser sensor kits to the U.S. military in 2008, and the U.S. Air Force successfully employed them in combat in Iraq that same year.
Since starting JDAM production in 1998, Boeing has built more than 238,000 tail kits in its St. Charles, Mo., facility ñ on time and at cost ñ for use by the U.S. Defense Department and 26 international militaries.