The US Army has awarded the first $161m production contract for the modernised army tactical missile system (ATACMS) missiles.
ATACMS is a long-range precision-strike surface-to-surface weapon system packaged in a guided missile launch assembly pod, which can be fired from a range of multiple launch rocket system (MLRS) launchers.
Awarded to Lockheed Martin as part of the ATACMS Service Life Extension Program, the contract will involve the production of 150 ATACMS missiles.
Under the army's ATACMS Service Life Extension Program, ATACMS Block 1 and 1A warheads are disassembled, demilitarised and replaced with new unitary warheads.
The modernisation process also resets the missile's shelf life, which is said to last more than ten years.
Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control Precision Fires vice-president Scott Greene said: "The ATACMS Service Life Extension Program takes existing missiles and refurbishes them, resetting their shelf life.
"ATACMS provides the combatant commanders with critical, deep-strike capabilities to service high-value targets in all weather conditions."
Work under the contract will be carried out at the company’s Precision Fires Production Center of Excellence in Camden, Arkansas, US.
Last week, the company delivered the first ATACMS missile from its new production facility in Camden.
While Lockheed has produced more than 3,800 ATACMS missiles, over 600 ATACMS have been fired in combat to date.