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Raytheon, Northrop Grumman partnership to develop hypersonic tactical missiles

Building on years of collaboration, Raytheon and Northrop Grumman have signed a a teaming agreement to develop, produce and integrate Northrop Grumman’s scramjet combustors to power Raytheon’s air-breathing hypersonic weapons.

The teaming agreement uses the combined capabilities of both companies to accelerate development and demonstrate readiness to produce the next generation of tactical missile systems.

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Scramjet engines use high vehicle speed to forcibly compress incoming air before combustion to enable sustained flight at hypersonic speeds. Such speeds reduce flight times and increase weapon survivability, effectiveness and flexibility.

Dr Thomas Bussing, Raytheon Advanced Missile Systems vice president, welcomed the industrial collaboration, saying, "The Raytheon/Northrop Grumman team is quickly developing air-breathing hypersonic weapons to keep our nation ahead of the threat."

Northrop Grumman and Raytheon are working under a $200 million Hypersonic Air-breathing Weapon Concept, or HAWC, program contract to deliver an affordable, effective and producible cruise missile for DARPA and the US Air Force. 

"This agreement combines Raytheon’s decades of tactical missile expertise with Northrop Grumman’s extensive scramjet engine development experience to produce the best possible weapons," Dr Bussing added. 

Mike Kahn, vice president and general manager of Northrop Grumman’s defence systems, expanded on the collaboration, saying, "This teaming agreement extends our strong partnership with Raytheon on this critical technology capability. Our deep heritage in propulsion, fuses and warheads will help accelerate readiness of tomorrow’s missiles to meet range, survivability, safety and lethality requirements."

Under the agreement, Raytheon and Northrop Grumman will continue to collaborate on HAWC and future air-breathing hypersonic missiles. Both companies are investing in hypersonic technologies and programs to ensure the military has a robust portfolio.

"Together with Raytheon, we intend to make great strides toward improving our nation’s high-speed weapon systems, which are critical to enhancing our warfighters’ capabilities for greater standoff and quicker time to target," Kahn added. 

Northrop Grumman is a global security company providing innovative systems, products and solutions in autonomous systems, cyber, C4ISR, space, strike, and logistics and modernisation to customers worldwide.

Raytheon is a technology and innovation leader specialising in defence, civil government and cyber security solutions. With a history of innovation spanning 97 years, Raytheon provides state-of-the-art electronics, mission systems integration, C5I products and services, sensing, effects and mission support for customers in more than 80 countries.

Raytheon, Northrop Grumman partnership to develop hypersonic tactical missiles
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