Lockheed Martin and its Japanese trading partner have received a contract to produce two solid-state radar (SSR) antenna sets for Japan’s Aegis Ashore land-based missile system.

The contract was awarded by the Japanese Ministry of Defence and comes after the US Government recently designated Lockheed Martin’s SSR as AN/SPY-7(V)1.

When combined with the Aegis Ashore system, the SPY-7 radar will provide continuous protection to Japan against the threat of ballistic missiles.

Aegis Ashore Japan will provide the capability to detect and engage sophisticated ballistic missile threats.

The weapon system is designed to offer enhanced sensitivity and detection range when compared to traditional SPY-1 Aegis Ashore systems. In addition, it can engage multiple targets at the same time.

In a media statement, Lockheed Martin said: “As the threat landscape evolves, Aegis Ashore will protect the country and its citizens. Lockheed Martin is leveraging programmes of record for Aegis Ashore Japan and utilising the existing supply chain that already supports multiple solid-state radar programmes.”

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The company stated that the land-based Aegis Ashore will provide interoperability with Japan’s existing Aegis naval fleet.

The design of the system will also allow for further software updates to meet evolving threats.

In January, the US State Department approved the sale of two Aegis Ashore batteries to Japan in a foreign military sale valued at approximately $2.15bn.

Japan chose the AN/SPY-7(V)1 radar for two planned Aegis Ashore installations in 2018.

Other variants of the radar technology will be used by Canada and Spain for their naval ships.