Northrop Grumman Systems has been awarded a contract by Electronic Systems Center to provide the US Air Force (USAF) with a deployable precision approach landing capability to support contingency operations worldwide.

Under the $8.8m contract with Northrop’s network systems division, the deployable instrument landing system (D-ILS) will provide guidance to aircraft on final approach during low visibility or low-ceiling weather conditions.

The D-ILS will be able to convert a bare forward-operating base into a precision-approach-capable operating airfield and augment an existing airfield for conducting operations.

The programme involves the production of 34 systems with a five-year period of performance and a potential value of $58m if all options are exercised.

Production under the contract is scheduled to take place in the middle of 2013 with initial operating capability slated for early 2014.

Electronic Systems Center is a product centre of Air Force Materiel Command (AFMC) headquartered at Hanscom Air Force Base, Massachusetts, US.