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Cost considerations and politics drive USAF choice for LRSO

29th April 2020 - 18:00 GMT | by Ian Parker in Portsmouth

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The US Air Force’s selection recently of Raytheon Technologies as sole-source contractor on the Long Range Stand Off (LRSO) programme, ahead of a concept solution from Lockheed Martin, has drawn more attention than was planned.

Various factors are at issue, including cost control, political acceptability and the potential Russian response. Plans may also be in place for a non-nuclear (conventional) version of the LRSO, which might reduce unit costs because of the bigger production run.

Lockheed Martin is not out of the picture, however, and some of its work (particularly on sensors) might be applied to Raytheon’s efforts. Also, it …

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