The US Navy has added $16.7 million to a contract awarded to Raytheon Missiles and Defense for the procurement of Airborne Mine Neutralization Systems (AMNS), the Department of Defense (DoD) wrote in a notification.
The revised total contract by Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington, DC, has risen to $68,550,513.
The mine clearance system, deployed from MH-60S helicopters, neutralizes moored and bottom sea mines, Raytheon explained.
The mine is first located through sonar or other countermeasure system sensors; then the AMNS is deployed to diffuse it.
The AMNS consists of two subsystems: the Launch and Handling System (LHS) and neutralizers, Military Aerospace wrote.
The mine-clearance process begins with the untethering of the LHS from the helicopter.
The unmanned underwater vehicle then “swims out on its own near the mine danger area,” Military Aerospace explained in another article.
The LHS then releases a tethered neutralizer vehicle, controlled by an operator from the aircraft.
The remote-controlled vehicle finds and identifies the mine with the help of attached sonar, light, and video camera and fires an armor-piercing warhead to deactivate the mine.
The system will be manufactured at Raytheon’s Portsmouth, Rhode Island facility by 2024, the DoD notification revealed, adding that the entire process is expected to be completed by 2027.