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Raytheon Awarded $34 million for MALD-X

 

 

The U.S. Air Force has awarded Raytheon Company $34.8 million to demonstrate upgraded electronic warfare capabilities for the existing Miniature Air Launched Decoy-Jammer (MALD-J) missile, according to a company press release.

The upgraded missile, to be called MALD-X, is to be developed and tested, including through two flight demonstrations, within 24 months.

MALD-J

MALD-J is the jammer variant of the basic decoy, and the first ever stand-in jammer to enter production. MALD-X will add improved electronic warfare capabilities, low altitude flight, and a datalink to the MALD-J. Raytheon photo

“MALD-X will build on the successful MALD platform to demonstrate the advanced electronic warfare capabilities needed today and in the future,” said Mike Jarrett, Raytheon vice president of Air Warfare Systems. “MALD-X creates an upgrade path for the current MALD-J program of record and meets the requirements for the MALD-N, a net-enabled decoy/jammer for the U.S. Navy.”

MALD-X will add an improved electronic warfare payload, low-altitude flight capabilities, and a datalink that will allow the weapon to communicate with other net-enabled systems.

MALD is a low-cost modular, programmable, and expendable air-launched decoy that mimics friendly aircraft in order to confuse enemy defensive systems. MALD weighs less than 300 pounds and has a range of approximately 500 nautical miles and endurance of 90 minutes, according to Raytheon. MALD-J adds radar-jamming capability to the basic MALD platform.

F-16 with MALD

MALD is an expendable air-launched flight vehicle that looks like a U.S. or allied aircraft to enemy integrated air defense systems. The MALD-X will expand the MALD-J jamming decoy’s capabilities in several areas. Raytheon photo

MALD-X will add an improved electronic warfare payload, low-altitude flight capabilities, and a datalink that will allow the weapon to communicate with other net-enabled systems.

“MALD-X will allow the Air Force and Navy to quickly move on to the next generation of MALD, providing a substantial increase in capability and potential mission areas,” said Dr. Will Roper, director of the Special Capabilities Office at the Office of the Secretary of Defense. “The program will provide the combatant command with a flexible capability that will address key needs in multiple regions of the world.”

MALD-X is contracted and managed by the MALD Program Office at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida, with program oversight from the Special Capabilities Office under the Office of the Secretary of Defense. Technical management is shared by the Air Force and Navy.