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Navy awards contract up to $812M to Lockheed Martin Syracuse for ship defenses

Lockheed Martin in Salina, N.Y., will build electronic systems to help protect Navy ships like the guided-missile destroyer USS Farragut from anti-ship missiles.

MASS COMMUNICATION SPECIALIST 2ND CLASS ANDERSON W. BRANCH/U.S. NAVY

By MARK WEINER | Syracuse Media Group | Published: January 29, 2020

WASHINGTON (Tribune News Service) — The U.S. Navy has selected Lockheed Martin in suburban Syracuse for a contract worth up to $812 million for electronic systems that defend its aircraft carriers, cruisers and destroyers from anti-ship missiles.

Pentagon officials said Lockheed Martin won a competitively bid contract for $185 million to begin full-rate production of the systems under the Surface Electronic Warfare Improvement Program, or SEWIP.

The contract includes four one-year options for the Navy. If exercised, those options would bring the total value of the contact to $812 million, Pentagon officials said.

The contract means that work on the project would continue through September 2026 at Lockheed’s campus at Electronics Park in Salina.

A Lockheed Martin spokeswoman told Syracuse.com that the contract will not lead to any direct new hiring but will help sustain the existing workforce of about 1,700 people in Salina.

The company held a job fair in Syracuse this month to try to recruit workers to fill at least 72 openings in Salina.

Lockheed Martin said the Navy contract “secures the future” of the SEWIP Block 2 phase of production for the company and adds production for Block 1B3 systems.

Lockheed’s sensors and electronic systems provide Navy ships with protection from anti-ship missiles by upgrading early detection, analysis, and threat warning capabilities.

The Pentagon said about 78% of the work on the initial contract will be performed at Electronics Park in Salina. The remaining 22 percent of the work will be done in Lansdale, Pa.

The Salina plant has succeeded in building up a big pipeline of work. In September, the U.S. Army awarded Lockheed a contract worth up to $3 billion to build its next generation of radars for short-range air defenses. It’s the single largest contract in the history of the local plant.

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