Amentum’s subsidiary PAE Aviation and Technical Services has secured a $136m contract for the US Air Force’s (USAF) aerial targets operations and maintenance (O&M).

The deal will support the 53rd Weapons Evaluation Group’s (WEG) 82nd Aerial Targets Squadron (ATRS).

Awarded by the USAF’s Air Combat Command (ACC), the contract will allow the ATRS to perform weapons systems testing and airborne tactics development.

The 82nd ATRS primarily provides aerial targets for lethality testing of major weapons systems and munition programmes.

As part of the latest contract, PAE Aviation will prepare, service, launch, recover, maintain, troubleshoot and repair the USAF’s QF-16 full-scale aerial targets (FSAT), sub-scale aerial targets (SSAT) and related support equipment.

This work will be delivered at the organisational and intermediate levels.

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The company will also perform services for various instrumentation systems for the 53rd WEG.

It will be carried out at Tyndall Air Force Base (AFB) in Florida and Holloman AFB in New Mexico.

Work under this firm-fixed-price contract is expected to complete by 30 September 2029. This contract has a one-year base period, as well as six one-year option periods.

Amentum Critical Missions Group president Dr Karl Spinnenweber said: “Our proven performance on advanced systems has made us the best partner to aid USAF in the latest, fourth-generation FSAT designed to test and evaluate US weapons systems and assist in developing tactics, techniques and procedures to counter fighter-size airborne threats.

“We are looking forward to providing critical support to assist in countering threats to our nation’s security.”

Other efforts to be offered by PAE Aviation under this contract will involve the continuance of range instrumentation systems to include range control, drone control, instrumentation and advanced communications systems.

It also involves the maintenance of FSAT’s onboard scoring systems for targets.