If You Are An American Taxpayer, Then These Are Your Latest defence Purchases

RadarThe 11 story SSPARS radar

Photo: US Air Force

After a week where the Department of defence didn’t do very much at all — the DoD spent a measly $1.8 billion the last time we checked in on them — the Pentagon is back in business, spending $7.5 billion last week and buying next-gen missiles, a new warship, and many other buys. If you want to find out how to burn through $7.5 billion in a week, read on. We found the biggest and most significant contracts inked last week. 

America — enjoy your recent purchases:

amphibious transport dock ship uss green bay

Photo: US Navy / Flickr

$1.5 Billion to Huntington Ingalls for a brand new warshipHuntington Ingalls just got the greenlight to build the next Landing Platform Dock ship for the Navy. The ships are 684 feet long and displace 25,000 tons.

They carry up to 800 troops and  air cushion landing ships, as well as helicopters and vertical take off and landing aircraft.  They cost around $1.5 billion to build. So far, eleven have entered service.

The LPD ships are part of the Navy’s transition process. They aim to support Marine Expeditionary Units, and are smaller in size and more amphibious in tactics than traditional cruisers. 

Photo: wikipedia commons

$925 million to Raytheon for the next generation of missilesRaytheon makes the successful Standard Missile-3 designs. They are used to take out an incoming ballistic missiles, with its modus operandi being to shoot it out of the sky as directed by the Aegis missile defence system. They’re wildly complex but also highly effective in recent tests.

In service are the Block IA SM-3s, and the Block IB SM-3s are undergoing final testing before integration into the fleet. With this contract, Raytheon will continue development of the next iteration of the SM-3 missile, the SM-3 Block IIA.

Judging by the end date of the contract, the Missile defence Agency wants the missile operational by 2017.  This contract brings the total cost of development of the SM-3 IIA to $1.5 billion. 

SSPARS radarThe 11 story tall SSPARS radar

Photo: U.S. Air Force

Up to $176 million for Alaskan Radar
Clear Air Force Station is located 78 miles southwest of Fairbanks, Alaska, in the middle of the state. The primary purpose of the station is to detect incoming intercontinental ballistic missiles and submarine-launched ballistic missiles. 

Now, the Missile defence Agency wants to upgrade the Early Warning Radar system that makes this base so very useful. The cost of the upgrades range from an estimated $125 million to a maximum cumulative value of $176 million, and Raytheon scored the contract. 

Photo: US Navy

$107 million buys 11 new planes for the NavyBoeing scores a new contract to build eleven of the new P-8A jets for the Navy. The design is based on the 737 aircraft, and is intended to carry out anti-submarine warfare. It’ll carry depth charges, SLAM-ER anti-ship missiles, torpedoes, and sonobuoys. 

They’re planned to be introduced in 2013, and this initial order will buy the first aircraft for the Navy to ensure integration. The Navy wants 117 of them eventually. 

The plane is also being prepped for export, as the Indian Navy has expressed interest in the aircraft. 


Now, check out how the fleet would detect and respond to a full on attack >>

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