Boeing wins $3.48 billion U.S. missile contract

Sat Dec 31, 2011 12:32am EST

Engineers stand next to the Boeing Dreamliner 787-800 after making its first landing at the Jomo Kenyatta airport in Kenya's capital Nairobi, December 14, 2011.   REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya

Engineers stand next to the Boeing Dreamliner 787-800 after making its first landing at the Jomo Kenyatta airport in Kenya's capital Nairobi, December 14, 2011.

Credit: Reuters/Thomas Mukoya

(Reuters) - Boeing Co beat out Lockheed Martin to retain its position as the prime contractor for the U.S. long-range missile shield, the Pentagon said on Friday.

The U.S. Defense Department said it was awarding Boeing a $3.48 billion, seven-year contract to develop, test, engineer and manufacture missile defense systems.

A team led by Lockheed Martin Corp and Raytheon Co had vied with Boeing to expand and maintain the Ground-based Midcourse Defense, or GMD, hub of layered antimissile protection.

Boeing partnered with Northrop Grumman Corp to retain the work.

"We believe the government conducted a fair and open competition, making the right decision for the future of the program," Norm Tew, Boeing vice president and program director of GMD, said in a statement.

Lockheed said it was "honored" to have participated on the bid, a company spokesperson said in a statement on Friday.

The GMD contract's value to Boeing will have been about $18 billion from January 2001, when it formally became the system's prime contractor, through the end of this year, Boeing has said.

GMD uses radar and other sensors plus a 20,000-mile fiber optic communications network to cue interceptors in silos at Fort Greely, Alaska and Vandenberg Air Force Base, California.

The shield has been shaped initially to guard against ballistic missiles that could be fired by Iran and North Korea. It is the only U.S. defense against long-range missiles that could be tipped with chemical, biological or nuclear warheads.

(Writing by Patrick Temple-West; reporting By Jim Wolf and Karey Wutkowski; Editing by Steve Orlofsky)

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see
Comments (11)
Gaius_Baltar wrote:
Is this version of Star Wars exempt from audit by the Director of Operational Test and Evaluation? If still exempt, why?

Dec 30, 2011 7:49pm EST  --  Report as abuse
mcp123 wrote:
Another waste of money… if they want to hit us… it doesn’t have to be by air. As in the 80′s a concept of MAD (mutually assured destruction) which worked BTW is ignored in favor of wasting U.S. taxpayer dollars on expensive gee whiz technological systems.

What a waste…

Dec 30, 2011 9:52pm EST  --  Report as abuse
Majick1 wrote:
More of a waste than you think. This is s government contract which means they will get a trillion in cost over-runs because the government doesn’t understand a contact is a contract and that’s what we should pay – not one cent more.
Another load of thousand dollar screwdrivers but they won’t do what they are supposed to do because they won’t have a tip. “We can do it, oops no we can’t”

Dec 30, 2011 11:09pm EST  --  Report as abuse
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.