Raytheon receives JPALS contract
Raytheon will complete development of the Joint Precision Approach and Landing System (JPALS) under a $255 million contract from the US Navy announced on 19 October. The contract includes options which, if exercised, would bring the value to $270 million.
The funding covers development and production readiness of the next-generation precision landing system, which replaces radar and beacons with GPS navigation to provide more accurate landing guidance for manned and unmanned aircraft.
The company will complete development for an auto-land capability to be used by both manned and unmanned aircraft, including the MQ-25A multi-mission unmanned vehicle.
The first manned aircraft to be equipped with JPALS will be the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter in F-35C carrier variant and F-35B short take-off/vertical landing variant. Raytheon will finalise integration with the aircraft under this contract.
JPALS is expected to enter service in 2018 and will be used by the US Navy and US Marine Corps.
Designed to provide pinpoint landing guidance on carriers in rough seas, JPAL is tailorable to a wide range of environments including contingency operations or land-based airfields with curved, segmented and specialised approaches; and can integrate and modernise landing systems on legacy aircraft for joint interoperability.
The system improves navigational alignment prior to approach, allowing aircraft to land on any aircraft carrier or amphibious assault ship, day or night, even in adverse weather conditions, and has anti-jam protection.
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