Air Force buys 250 MALD jammers under Lot 11 contract

By Rachel Cohen / August 2, 2018 at 11:58 AM

Raytheon recently received a $96 million contract to build 250 more Miniature Air-Launched Decoy Jammers, the company said this week.

While the initial sum was awarded up front, the total Lot 11 contract will be worth nearly $291 million, according to a June 29 Defense Department announcement. Work will run through June 30, 2020.

MALD and its jamming variant are small missiles integrated on Boeing's B-52 and Lockheed Martin's F-16 that replicate the radar signatures of Air Force aircraft to confuse adversaries. Raytheon also plans to add it to Navy aircraft.

"The unmanned MALD-J decoy navigates and operates much closer to the victim radar than conventional electronic warfare when jamming the electronics, allowing aviators and aircraft to stay out of harm's way," according to Raytheon. "It is able to loiter in the target area for an extended time period. . . . The weapon can operate alone or in pairs, but is designed to work with and leverage other electronic-warfare platforms."

Air Force fiscal year 2019 budget documents show the service also awarded a 360-unit Lot 9 contract in June 2016 and a 200-unit Lot 10 contract that November. Raytheon has delivered more than 2,000 MALD units so far, the company said July 31.

A service spokeswoman did not respond to questions by press time (Aug. 2).