The US Air Force (USAF) has awarded a contract to Lockheed Martin for follow-on production of the Paveway II Plus laser guided bomb (LGB) kits.
Under the terms of the $31.1m contract, the company will supply computer control groups and air foil groups for GBU-10 and GBU-12 bombs.
Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control precision guided systems manager Joe Serra said the company’s Paveway II Plus LGBs deliver superior capability at the best value to the warfighter.
”The contract represents the seventh US Air Force paveway II Plus award and extends production at our Archbald, PA facility through the end of 2014,” Serra said.
The paveway II Plus LGB uses an enhanced laser guidance package to significantly enhance precision and reduce risk to the US and allied ground forces, when compared to the currently used paveway II LGBs.
Specifically, the kit features a MAU-209C/B computer control group containing the electronic guidance system and an airfoil group, which provides lift and stability to the weapons in standard 2,000lb GBU-10 MK-84, 500lb GBU-12 MK-82 and 1,000lb GBU-16 MK-83 series configurations.
Compatible and interoperable with existing paveway II equipment, handling procedures and aircrew operations, the new bombs can be carried on USAF, US Navy and other international manned and unmanned aircraft currently authorised to carry and release LGBs.
The Paveway II is designed to transform ‘dumb’ unguided bombs into precision-guided weapons using laser and GPS-guidance systems for tactical air-to-ground warfare.
Apart from a qualified provider of all three paveway II MK-80 series LGB variants, Lockheed is also the sole provider of the enhanced laser guided training round and dual mode LGBs.
More than 130,000 training rounds, 70,000 paveway II LGB kits and 7,000 dual mode systems are manufactured at Lockheed’s production facility in Archbald, US to US Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force and international customers.
Image: A Paveway II computer control group, an Enhanced GBU-12, and a laser-guided training round on display at the Paris Air Show 2007. Photo: © 2007 David Monniaux.