BAE Systems wins US Navy contract for laser-guided rockets

19 December 2019 (Last Updated December 19th, 2019 13:59)

BAE Systems has been awarded a $2.68bn contract to deliver additional Advanced Precision Kill Weapon System (APKWS) laser-guided rockets to the US Navy.

BAE Systems wins US Navy contract for laser-guided rockets
A naval helicopter fires an APKWS laser-guided rocket at a speeding boat in the distance. Credit: BAE Systems.

BAE Systems has been awarded a $2.68bn contract to deliver additional Advanced Precision Kill Weapon System (APKWS) laser-guided rockets to the US Navy.

The indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract covers full-rate production lots eight to 12 of the precision munition.

BAE Systems will provide APKWS II WGU-59/B units under the contract to help upgrade the existing 2.75in rocket system to a semi-active laser-guided precision weapon.

The upgrade kits are intended for the navy, airforce, army and foreign allies, including Iraq, the Netherlands, Afghanistan, the UK, Lebanon, Australia, Tunisia, the Philippines, and Jordan.

The rockets provide precision strike capabilities and minimise the risk of collateral damage.

BAE Systems Precision Guidance and Sensing Solutions director Marc Casseres said: “Our armed forces customers are looking to apply just the right amount of force at the right location to execute their missions without unnecessary damage.

“APKWS rockets provide warfighters with the unique ability to precisely engage targets without excessive force, reducing the risk to nearby forces, civilians, and assets. It’s the driving force behind growing global demand.”

The APKWS guidance kits can be used to convert unguided rockets into precision-guided weapons to provide surgical strike capability.

BAE Systems will produce an undisclosed number of APKWS rockets over the five-year contract period.

The rocket can hit targets with high accuracy and can be launched from fixed-wing and rotary-wing aircraft, including the F-16, ARH, A-10, AV-8B, UH-1Y and UH-60L/M.