Silent Night nets Raytheon $135.4m

The US Special Operations Command has awarded Raytheon a $135.4m contract to develop a new tactical radar for rotary and fixed-wing aircraft.

Formally signed on December 12, 2006, and initially funded at $28.5m, the system design and development contract calls for Raytheon to build, test and integrate the new Silent Knight radar. The system will serve as a common multi-mode terrain following/terrain avoidance radar for a variety of platforms including the MH-47G helicopter, the lead aircraft for the program.

The cost plus incentive fee contract, potentially valued at more than $164m, contains an option for six low rate initial production units. Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems is performing the work in Dallas and McKinney, Texas. Principal partners include AIC, Crestview, Florida; DRS Technologies, St. Louis, Missouri; and Rockwell Collins, Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

The Silent Knight radar will allow airborne forces safe low-level flight and safe ingress and egress in adverse environments. The system will also provide navigation support, ground mapping and weather information to aircrews.

The new radar will include advances in terrain following and avoidance capabilities and will be lighter and require less power than predecessors. As a common system, Silent Knight will eventually be fielded on MH-60M, MC-130H, and CV-22 block 30 aircraft.