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Classified projects boost Raytheon Missile Systems

Raytheon is investing in new buildings to house a rapidly growing workforce after the Missile Systems division recently won new contracts, including classified deals, a top executive says.

Investing in the new facilities is necessary because the Tucson-based Missile Systems unit is “literally busting at the seams” from an influx of orders, says Raytheon vice-president and chief financial officer Toby O’Brien.

“A lot of it is related to classified work,” O’Brien says.

The unit is seeing demand as concern grows over the improving capabilities of peer threats, says O’Brien, citing Russia and China as sources.

O’Brien’s remarks at the Credit Suisse Industrials Conference on 29 November come a few weeks after Raytheon first disclosed the classified contract awards for Missile Systems in a third quarter earnings report.

The new deal could cover a broad range of Missile Systems applications. The unit currently has a monopoly on the US military’s supply of air intercept missiles, such as the AIM-120 AMRAAM and AIM-9 Sidewinder. It’s also developing a new class of swarming unmanned air systems under a contract with the Office Of Naval Research. But the unit is also heavily involved in surface-to-air interceptors, supplying MIM-104 Patriots, plus SM-3 and SM-6 missiles for the US Navy.

Raytheon had participated in several projects several years ago to develop a next-generation air-to-air missile, including the US Air Force’s cancelled dual-role air dominance missile (DRADM) and the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency’s triple target terminator (T3) programme, which ended without any acknowledged follow-on.

Raytheon also is competing with Lockheed Martin to develop a long-range stand-off (LRSO) missile. The USAF awarded both companies about $900 million each in August to mature and de-risk certain technologies related to the new cruise missile, in advance of a planned down-select to one company to proceed to full-scale development.