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Lockheed Receives Contract to Continue F-22 Upgrades

Lockheed Martin (LMT) has completed deliveries of the F-22 Raptor to the U.S. Air Force. Based on past experience the aircraft may remain in service to well into this century. Due to this projected service life the Government just awarded a contract to continue upgrades to the aircraft.

Similar to one issued in 2003 this almost $7 billion Indefinite Delivery / Indefinite Quantity (ID/IQ) contract will allow the Air Force to buy the necessary technical services and work to integrate new electronics, weapons and sensors onto the aircraft. The contract is for 10 years.

Like all ID/IQ contracts there is no guarantee that any work will be awarded or the full value of the contract reached.

The previous contract too had a value of over $7 billion and supported integration of different Increments for the aircraft.

The F-22 was developed over two decades ago and was in production for over ten years. It is not surprising that there will be new weapons such as the Small Diameter Bomb (SDB) or missile systems that need to be added. There will also be new air-to-air systems as well as data links, sensors and more efficient electronics and engines that ultimately could be added to the aircraft.

It is also conceivable that some of the technology being developed for the F-35 could also be added to the F-22 like the new helmet.

As with many military systems the OEM will be making money off of them well after production ends.

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