Babcock to deliver additional Phalanx systems to UK
Babcock has been contracted by the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) to deliver four Phalanx 1B kit modifications and undertake two conversions of the land Phalanx weapons system to its original marinised configuration, to provide naval close-in weapon systems (CIWS) capability.
Phalanx CIWS – a rapid-fire, computercontrolled radar and 20mm Gatling gun system – is the UK’s primary defence for ships against the threat of anti-ship missiles. The Phalanx 1B upgrade incorporates a side-mounted forward looking infrared camera (FLIR) enabling the CIWS to defend the ship against surface targets and slow air targets in addition to anti-ship missiles. The 1B configuration is valuable both in terms of countering the threat from small surface craft in littoral waters, and to counter forthcoming obsolescence issues.
Babcock is the in-service support provider to the MoD for Phalanx systems under a long-term availability contract awarded in 2006, managing and executing all upkeep support activities, including a 24/7 help desk for the Royal Navy, as well as providing logistics support for spares and repairable units. Additionally the company is under contract to upgrade 16 Phalanx systems to the 1B configuration in an ongoing programme.
The latest requirement for four further 1B kits and two conversions will be delivered under an amendment to the existing support and upgrade contract. Babcock will procure the Phalanx 1B systems from original equipment manufacturer Raytheon, and will be undertaking the conversion of the two land-based Phalanx weapon systems using their own weapons support engineers. The systems are due to be delivered by March 2014.
Babcock Weapons Business Development Manager, Martin Laity, said: “We are delighted to be applying our expertise and working with Raytheon to help the MoD and Royal Navy build the Phalanx CIWS capability it needs. Babcock is already known for our weapon support work for the UK MoD and our expertise in the assembly, test and setting to work of naval weapon systems. We hold long-term contracts to support the Phalanx CIWS and 4.5-inch Mk8 Mod1 Gun as well as upgrade contracts, and are well placed to support the MoD and Royal Navy in meeting this further Phalanx capability upgrade, and future gun system needs.”