The US Air Force (USAF) has awarded a $165m firm-fixed-price indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity (IDIQ) contract to aerospace and defence industry technology company Mercury Systems.

This contract involves the delivery of flight data recorders to support secure mission data systems (SMDS) on the F-16 fleet.

These flight data recorders are expected to improve performance, security and reliability for the F-16 jets’ current and future mission requirements.

The contract includes an initial order worth $16.4m and carries a 72-month planned performance and shipment period.

Mercury Systems Processing division president and executive vice-president Brian Perry said: “Our defence customers are looking for solutions that minimise cost, reduce programme risk and deliver proven performance and reliability.

“As an independent domestic supplier of key defence-grade microelectronics, they depend on us to provide the purpose-built technology they need to meet their challenges, and we look forward to working as a trusted partner to deliver systems that protect individuals and communities around the world.”

The firm secured the deal after demonstrating a combined solution with two integrated systems. This enabled the US Department of Defence (DoD) to advance without modifying any existing software onboard the F-16.

In addition, this new capability will offer open system architecture elements in line with the government’s open systems mandate.

Headquartered in Andover, Massachusetts, Mercury Systems focuses on delivering secure open-architecture processing solutions for mission-critical applications.

In January 2022, Mercury Systems won a $17m contract to deliver ruggedised radio frequency (RF) microelectronics for the US and allies.