Northrop and Lockheed win missile defense contracts valued at up to $7.6 billion

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -Northrop Grumman and Lockheed Martin won separate contracts to design the next-generation interceptor for the U.S. missile defense network, according to a document seen by Reuters on Tuesday.

The Northrop deal is worth up to $3.9 billion and the Lockheed contract could be valued at up to $3.7 billion.

The next-generation interceptor program could be worth as much as $10 to $12 billion over its lifetime as the contractor works to make the technology capable of defeating current threats and future technological advances from countries like North Korea and Iran.

The new interceptors would be a part of the Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD) system here, a network of radars, anti-ballistic missiles and other equipment designed to protect the United States from intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs).

Reporting by Mike Stone; Editing by Leslie Adler and Sonya Hepinstall