The U.S. Air Force has awardedÂ Lockheed MartinÂ (NYSE: LMT) a potential $480 millionÂ contract to design a secondÂ hypersonic weapon technology for the service branch.
Lockheed’s missiles and fire control business will supportÂ critical design review, test and production readiness efforts under theÂ Air-Launched Rapid Response Weapon program, the Defense Department said Monday.
Work under the sole-source contract will occur in Orlando, Fla. through Nov. 30 2021.
TheÂ AF Life Cycle Management Center is obligating $5 million in fiscal 2018 research, development, test and evaluation funds at the time of award.
In a separate announcement, the service said it expects to definitize the contract action within 180 days of award.
The ARRW project is among two USAF prototyping initiatives that seekÂ to accelerate hypersonic weapons R&D and aims to reach operational capability status for the technology in three years.
The other project, called theÂ Hypersonic Conventional Strike Weapon effort, focuses on exploringÂ mature technology platforms that the military has not integratedÂ with an air-launched delivery system.
USAF agreed to cooperate with the DoD, Missile Defense Agency, U.S. Navy and U.S. ArmyÂ on efforts to develop boost-glide technology under a memorandum of understanding signed in late June.