As of November, the Navy awarded Northrop Grumman’s [NOC] $153 million total in contracts for full-rate production of Lots 10 and 11 of the AGM-88E2 Advanced Anti-Radiation Guided Missile (AARGM) for the U.S. and Germany.
The Navy initially awarded Northrop Grumman a $95 million contract to procure full-rate production of Lot 10 AARGMs in August. That award included the conversion of 87 government-provided AGM-88B High Speed Anti-Radiation Missiles (HARMs) and converting 40 Germany Air Force HARMs into 127 total AGM-88E AARGM All-Up-Rounds (Defense Daily, Aug. 6).
Work under the initial contract was planned to be split between Northridge, Calif. (80 percent) and Ridecrest, Calif. (20 percent) and is due to be completed by March 2024.
Then on Nov. 29, the Navy then awarded a modification to that contract exercising an option to procure full-rate production Lot 11 AARGMs. The latest contract includes converting 51 HARMs into AGM-88E AARGM all-up-rounds and related supplies and services needed for the manufacture, spares and fleet deployment for Germany.
The modification work will occur in the same locations and is expected to be finished by March 2025.
The Navy specifically awarded these contracts to Northrop Grumman’s subsidiary Alliant Techsystems Operations LLC.
The company noted it has produced over 1,500 AARGM missiles for the international cooperative acquisition program with the U.S. Navy, which serves as executive agent, and the Italian Air Force.
These weapons will be deployed on F/A-18C/D Hornets, F/A-18E/F Super Hornets, EA-18G Growlers and Italian Air Force’s Tornado Electronic Combat aircraft.
“As threats continue to evolve, AARGM remains an affordable solution to continue protecting the U.S. Navy and our allies with their critical missions every day. The ability to detect and defeat the rapid proliferation of today’s surface-to-air-threats, while remaining out of harm’s way, is paramount to mission success,” Gordon Turner, vice president of advanced weapons at Northrop Grumman, said in a statement.
Relatedly, in August, the AARGM-Extended Range (AARGM-ER) reached a Milestone C production decision, authorizing the weapon to transition into low-rate initial production (LRIP), with initial awards expected within months (Defense Daily, Sept. 2).
Then, in September, the Navy awarded Northrop Grumman a $41 million contract for 16 LRIP Lot 1 AARGM-ER missiles (Defense Daily, Sept. 15).
The AARGM is used against enemy air defense targets.