Lockheed Martin has won a recapitalisation contract to overhaul and upgrade an additional Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS) M270 launchers.

The $226m US Army contract will see the refurbishment of 44 MLRS M270s and return to as ‘zero-time’ launchers.  

Last year, the company won an initial contract for the upgrade of 50 US Army MLRS launchers.

Once completed, the entire restoration effort will upgrade US Army’s existing fleet of 225 MLRS M270A1 launchers and 160 decommissioned M270A0s to M270A2s.

Lockheed Martin has partnered with the Red River Army Depot for the effort.

Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control, Precision Fires and Combat Maneuver Systems vice-president Gaylia Campbell said: “The complete restoration and upgrade to our combat-proven MLRS will return the system to a zero-time condition and ensure the M270-series launcher remains highly effective and reliable to serve our army customer through 2050.”

To increase the compatibility with future MLRS Family of Munitions (MFOM), the upgrade will comprise new engines, improved armoured cabs and the modern Common Fire Control System (CFCS).

The modifications will expand the interior volume and install new energy-absorbing seats. This will enhance protection from mine blasts and improvised explosive devices.

Further, the company will upgrade the fire control panel and fire control system.

Work on the recapitalisation effort will commence later this year, whereas the first zero-time refurbished launchers are scheduled to launch next year.

The heavy tracked mobile launcher, MLRS, can be transported in a C-17 and C-5 aircraft. It can fire Guided MLRS (GMLRS) rockets and Army Tactical Missile System missiles.

Additionally, the launcher can launch the Precision Strike Missile and Extended-Range GMLRS rockets. The missile and the rocket are under development.