Raytheon has received a contract from the US Air Force to continue design work on the AGM-65E2/L laser-guided Maverick missile, the newest variant of the Maverick.

Under the $34.4m contract, Raytheon will develop, integrate and test the missile’s guidance and control section.

Equipped with an enhanced laser seeker and new software, the AGM-65E2 will reduce the risk of collateral damage and enable pilots to use onboard aircraft lasers to designate targets.

It can provide stand-off capability and high probability of strike against tactical targets, including armour, air defences, ships, transportation equipment and fuel storage facilities.

Raytheon Missile Systems air warfare systems vice-president Harry Schulte said the laser-guided Maverick was an ideal weapon for urban combat and high-speed manoeuvring targets.