|Photo courtesy NAVAIR
BAE Systems will provide the U.S. Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) a defensive weapon system for NAVAIR’s V-22 Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft, under a $14 million contract awarded Tuesday.
The system is based on the company’s Remote Guardian System, (RGS), a belly-mounted, remotely operated defensive weapon system that provides 360° of suppressive weapons fire for the V-22. BAE Systems’ Remote Guardian System is a common airborne defensive capability. RGS 22 has a compact, retractable design that saves valuable aircraft cabin space and is compatible with the full complement of the V-22’s avionics suite, according to the company.
“This system will provide vital protection to the V-22, its operators, and the Marines it will carry,” said Jim Garceau, vice president of defense avionics for BAE Systems. “The weapon system’s accuracy and ability to lock onto a stationary target in flight are critical to the defense of the aircraft.”
Under the contract, BAE Systems will produce and support RGS defensive weapon systems to be delivered by the end of 2012. The contract also includes a $12 million exercisable option for additional systems and support. The work for this system will be performed at BAE Systems facilities in Johnson City, New York, and Minneapolis, Minnesota.
On Wednesday, NAVAIR said the V-22 Osprey surpassed 100,000 flight hours in February while supporting combat operations in Afghanistan.
“The Osprey is giving combatant commanders unprecedented agility and operational reach,” said Gen. James Amos, commandant of the Marine Corps. “The revolutionary capability of the MV-22 will be a cornerstone of our Marine Air Ground Task Force. This aircraft is safe and survivable, and effective and efficient.”