The cost-plus-incentive-fee contract will support the production of ten pod simulators, eight operational prototype pods and four test pods.

The contract will also provide for production and delivery of two captive mass models, two mission system prototypes and a pair of technique development systems.

These pods will be employed for a range of testing levels to evaluate airworthiness, functionality, and integration on the EA-18G fleet.

US Navy Research, Development and Acquisition assistant secretary James Geurts said: “The teams work to reduce development risk, inform technology realities, and speed capabilities to the fleet was impressive.

“The efforts by all those involved enabled the Navy to move forward in a rapid manner to bring this new critical capability to bear for our warfighters, saving years in operational development.”

On 8 December, Geurts signed the Milestone B Acquisition Decision Memorandum for the NGJ-LB programme.

Work under the contract will be carried out in Salt Lake City, Boulder, Carlsbad, Stuart, Indianapolis, St. George, and Guthrie.

The company is expected to complete work in September 2025.

The ‘external jamming pod’ has been designed in response to advanced and emerging threats.

It uses digital, software-based array technologies and provides improved airborne electronic attack (AEA) capabilities to disrupt and degrade enemies air defence and ground communication systems.

Tactical Aircraft Programmes programme executive officer Shane Gahagan said: “NGJ-LB is the next step in the evolution of Airborne Electronic Attack that is needed to meet current and emerging electronic warfare gaps.

“The increased jamming capability that NGJ-LB brings to the warfighter is critical to sustaining the future missions of the Navy and other services.”

In June, the US Navy’s NGJ-LB programme concluded test events at two Naval Air Station Patuxent River facilities in Maryland.