Air Force releases RFP for $600M BLU-136/B area-attack weapon manufacturing contract

By Sara Sirota / July 31, 2019 at 3:43 PM

The Air Force today released a request for proposals to manufacture the BLU-136/B 2,000-pound warhead, one of two area-attack weapons intended to meet policy on cluster munitions.

The maximum ceiling for the multi-award, indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity contract is $600 million over a seven-year ordering period. Performance will not exceed three years after the end of this time frame, according to the RFP's statement of work.

This new weapon will be compatible with the existing GBU-31 Joint Direct Attack Munition guidance system and the DSU-33 height-of-burst sensor. It will also be integrated on the F-16 aircraft as a threshold platform.

The BLU-136/B, along with the BLU-134/B, make up the Next-Generation Area-Attack Weapon family of warheads that responds to a 2008 Defense Department policy which sought to minimize civilian harm by ending the use of cluster munitions that result in more than 1% unexploded ordnance by 2018. DOD characterized the directive as an alternative to a total ban proposal offered by the Oslo Process earlier that year.

That policy meant warfighters could no longer use the CBU-87 and CBU-103 cluster munitions, paving the way for the BLU-136/B.

According to the RFP, the acquisition is a 100% small business set-aside procurement.