Rocket order nets General Dynamics $98.6 million

General Dynamics has received a $98.6 million order to produce Hydra-70 2.75-inch rockets, motors and warheads for the US Army, Navy and Air Force.

General Dynamics Armament and Technical Products has received a $98.6 million order from the US Army Joint Munitions Command for the production of Hydra-70 2.75- inch (70mm) rockets, motors, and warheads for the US Army, Navy and Air Force.

According to General Dynamics, the order extends deliveries through to March 2006 on a contract awarded to the company in 1999. The total contract value to date is $833.8 million.

Hydra-70 rockets can be fired from a variety of rotary and fixed- wing platforms, including the US Army Apache and Marine Corps Cobra helicopters and the US Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon. The 70mm rocket system is said to offer several warhead configurations that fulfil a wide range of special mission requirements to defeat soft to lightly armoured targets.

In February, the US Army awarded General Dynamics a contract to add a precision guidance system to the 70mm rocket family as part of Block I development of the Advanced Precision Kill Weapon System (APKWS). In September, a 70mm guided rocket achieved a direct hit on a laser-designated stationary target three kilometres away during the first system design and development flight test.

System engineering and program management will be carried out at General Dynamics’ Burlington, Vermont Technology Center. Final assembly and component subassembly will be performed at General Dynamics’ Camden, Arkansas, and McHenry, Mississippi, facilities.