Raytheon Technologies Corporation, a defence technology company, has been awarded a $1.15bn contract to produce the latest configuration of AIM-120 D-3 and C-8 AMRAAM missiles.

This contract marks the fifth production lot of the missiles, which have undergone hardware updates and agile software upgrades through the Form, Fit, Function Refresh (F3R) program.

The contract signifies the most significant AMRAAM missile order ever placed and highlights AMRAAM’s role in modern air defence systems. The AIM-120 D-3 and AIM-120 C-8 AMRAAMs offer power and precision in air-to-air and surface-to-air engagements.

“We recognize AMRAAM as the most advanced, combat-proven missile, and we owe it to the warfighters to ensure they have the technology they need when they need it,” stated Paul Ferraro, President of Air Power for Raytheon, the parent company of RTX.

According to GlobalData’s “The Global Missiles & Missile Defense Systems Market 2022-2032” report, Raytheon Technologies is the leading MMDS supplier in North America. The company will capture 24.9% of the MMDS market in North America, with an anticipated revenue share of $34.7bn over 2022–32.

Under the F3R program, engineers employed model-based systems engineering initiatives and digital technologies to upgrade various circuit cards and other hardware components in the missile’s guidance section.

James Marques, aerospace, defence, and security analyst at GlobalData, claimed: “This is basically using computer-aided design (CAD) to speed up the process of making changes to a design, most usually smaller incremental ones.”

The program also facilitated re-hosting legacy software in the AIM-120 D-3 and AIM-120 C-8 AMRAAMs. These enhancements ensure that the missiles remain technologically advanced, maintaining their relevance in the evolving landscape of modern warfare.

The Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Air Dominance Division Contracting Office awarded the contract at Eglin Air Force Base, Florida. Work will primarily be conducted at Raytheon Missiles and Defense facilities in Tucson, Arizona, and is scheduled for completion by January 31, 2027.

The AMRAAM missiles have been supplied worldwide throughout the last few years. Between 2020 and 2021, the AIM-120C AMRAAM missiles were sold to Saudi Arabia and Japan. In the following years, the medium-range air-to-air missiles were acquired by Norway and Singapore and provided to Ukraine in their fight against Russian aerial attacks.