Air Force Seeks More Upgraded Laser-Guided Maverick Missiles

    Kris Osborn

    Security,

    The Air Force is seeking more upgraded Maverick air-to-ground missiles, an air-launched weapon in service since the Vietnam era now receiving an upgraded laser-seeker.

    For the upgrades, existing AGM-65A/B Guidance and Control Sections are modified with a state-of-the-art Semi-Active Laser E2 seeker target.  The missiles with upgraded seekers add the capability to self-lase from the delivery platform, address numerous changes in response to parts obsolescence, and add Pulse repetition frequency (PRF) last code hold to ease pilot workload, US military weapons developers told Warrior last year.  

    The Air Force is seeking more upgraded Maverick air-to-ground missiles, an air-launched weapon in service since the Vietnam era now receiving an upgraded laser-seeker along with new software configurations to better enable it to hit targets on the run, such as ISIS fighters.

    The upgraded weapon is currently configured to fire from an Air Force F-16 and A-10 and Navy Harrier Jets and F/A-18s.

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    “The upgrades are not completed.  Raytheon Missile Systems will deliver several hundred upgraded Guidance Control Sections from January-June 2018.  In addition, the U.S. Air Force is currently in negotiations with Raytheon for additional upgraded GCS for delivery after 2018,” Air Force spokeswoman Capt. Emily Grabowski told Warrior.

    US military weapons developers have explained that the Laser Maverick (LMAV) E2 seeker upgrade is capable of precisely targeting and destroying a wide variety of fixed, stationary and high speed moving land or sea targets.

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    The LMAV E2 upgrade program has been implemented as a seeker and sustainment upgrade, she added. The Air Force has been attacking ISIS with the upgraded Maverick through a prior deal to receive 256 missiles from its maker, Raytheon.

    Also, there is an existing laser-guided version of the Maverick already in use; the new variant involves a substantial improvement in the weapon’s guidance and targeting systems.

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    The National Interest

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