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.”

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