The US Navy has awarded a follow-on engineering services contract to Northrop Grumman to serve as the design agent for the AN/SPQ-9B surface search and fire control radar.

The contract involves support to existing and future systems, troubleshooting issues, the redesign of obsolete parts, and adding new capabilities to the baseline system.

According to the contract, Northrop Grumman will continue to support the installed base of 50 AN/SPQ-9B radar systems on ships and at six land sites, as well as future systems.

The contract also requires the company to deliver technical support to the navy in system installations, upgrades and follow-on production efforts.

Northrop Grumman maritime systems vice-president Todd Leavitt said: “We are honoured to continue our support of more than two decades to the fleet.

“By leveraging our expertise and partnership with the US Navy, we have developed radar systems that increasingly support complex missions. We are committed to maximising the design and engineering of this technology and enhancing capability that will extend to the navy’s next-generation radars.”

The company stated that the contract will boost its position in the market for hardware and software development for the anti-cruise missile defence mission.

The AN/SPQ-9B system has the ability to provide fire-control quality track data in stressing, high-clutter environments to ensure the protection of the navy’s surface combatants.

The multimode X-band pulse-Doppler radar can protect vessels from the threat of all known and projected sea-skimming missiles.

According to Northrop Grumman, the radar can detect small, fast-moving targets in heavy clutter environments.

Last April, the US Navy awarded a contract to DRS Laurel Technologies to manufacture and deliver up to 59 AN/SPQ-9B radar systems.