The US Naval Air Systems Command has awarded Kratos Unmanned Aerial Systems a $50.9 million contract modification for the delivery of an additional 65 BQM-177A subsonic aerial targets.
According to the Pentagon announcement, 50 of the targets will be delivered to the US Navy, while seven will go to the government of Japan, and eight to the government of Saudi Arabia.
The contract award also stated that $1.5 million were converted from foreign military sales (FMS) funds to weapons procurement to replace two targets expended by Australia. Deliveries are expected to be completed by February 2024.
BQM-177A is the latest variant of the navy’s subsonic aerial target which was expected to reach full operational capability (FOC) this year.
BQM-177 replicates modern subsonic anti-ship cruise missile threats launched from air, land, surface and subsurface to test the effectiveness of shipboard air defense systems and is used for fleet training. The target is capable of speeds in excess of 0.95 Mach and a sea-skimming altitude as low as 6.6 feet.
Kratos has delivered more than 100 BQM-177 targets to date.