The US Navy has awarded Raytheon a $119 million contract to begin integrating a new multi-mode seeker into the Tomahawk Block IV cruise missile.
The enhancement will enable the weapon to engage moving maritime targets.
The US Navy is conducting the new seeker development as a Rapid Deployment Capability program to meet urgent fleet requirements for defeating emerging maritime threats worldwide. Raytheon is expected to deliver this new capability by 2022.
“The US Navy and Raytheon are working closely together to further enhance this modern missile, keeping Tomahawk in the fleet for decades to come,” said Capt. Mark Johnson, Tomahawk program manager at US Naval Air Systems Command. “No other weapon on earth can match this cruise missile’s capability. Proven thousands of times in combat, Tomahawk is the nation’s weapon of choice.”
Launched from ships or submarines, the missile can fly into heavily defended airspace 1,000 statute miles away to conduct precise strikes on high-value targets with minimal collateral damage.
“Tomahawk’s new multi-mode seeker will add even more capability to this already advanced missile,” said Dave Adams, Raytheon Tomahawk program director. “Tomahawk is second to none in destroying stationary land targets, and soon the weapon will defeat moving maritime targets. Enemy vessels at sea will not elude Tomahawk.”
Raytheon is already modernising the systems radio suite and software under a separate Navy contract. Recertification on the first Block IVs is set to begin in 2019. That process will extend the missiles service life for 15 years and enable Raytheon to make enhancements to the missile.