The Missile Defense Agency awarded Boeing [BA] a $6.56 billion modification to a previous contract to extend its development and sustainment contract (DSC) for the Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD) missile defense program, the Defense Department said Jan. 31.

The DSC covers development, fielding, test, systems engineering, integration and configuration management, equipment manufacturing and refurbishment, training, and operations and sustainment for the GMD weapon system and associated support facilities.

Under this award MDA will execute missile defense enhancements including accelerated delivery of a new GMD missile field with 20 added silos as well as two more silos in a previously built missile field, all at Fort Greely, Alaska. This also includes the procurement and deployment of 20 more Ground-based interceptors (GBIs) used in the GMD missile fields.

This award comes weeks after the MDA notified industry that it would not assume the prime integrator role for the GMD system, deciding that doing so would add an “unacceptable level of risk.”

The agency had planned a follow-on acquisition strategy to the current DSC, run by Boeing, to compete future GMD acquisitions. That strategy included the option that MDA would assume the GMD weapon system prime role from Boeing. This plan mirrored the Increment 6 capability improvements, which include integrating the Lockheed Martin [LMT] Long Range Discrimination Radar; integration of the Redesigned Kill Vehicle (RKV); introduction of advanced discrimination data; upgrades to engagement management and Exo-atmospheric Kill Vehicle conventional discrimination; and introducing on-demand communications and RKV-to-RKV communications.

This newly announced modification covers technical capabilities to expand and improve the missile defense system to ensure defense capabilities remain current and relevant. This includes work on boost vehicle (BV) development; integration of redesigned kill vehicle (RKV) with BV; providing GBI assets for labs and test events; development, integration, testing and deployment of ground systems software builds to address emerging threats; acquisition and emplacement of launch support equipment; expanded systems testing through all ground and flight testing; cyber security support; and performance based logistics.

This modification more than doubles the total contract value of the DSC, including options, from $6.1 billion to $12.64 billion.

This award has a performance period of six years, through Dec. 2023.

MDA said the award to Boeing is for an industry team that also includes Orbital ATK [OA]; Northrop Grumman [NOC], and Raytheon [RTN].

The acquisition was conducted on a sole-source basis. The Defense Department said that “Boeing as the GMD DSC prime contractor, along with its subcontractors, collectively have demonstrated special capabilities and/or expertise that no other companies have been able to satisfactorily perform the required services or deliveries without unacceptable delays in fulfilling the Agency’s requirements.”

Fiscal year 2017 and 2018 research, development, test and evaluation (RDT&E) funds of $214 million were obligated at award time.