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US, Australia to Jointly Develop Rocket Motors, Boosters, Warheads

Australian munitions manufacturer NIOA has signed a strategic agreement to produce critical guided weapons components locally with L3Harris.

As part of the deal, the companies will explore the local manufacture of rocket motors, boosters, and warheads for munitions within the Aerojet Rocketdyne portfolio.

According to NIOA Group chief executive Robert Nioa, the collaboration will support future strategic partners to meet the guided weapons demands of the Australian Defence Force.

It will also support adjacent industry sectors such as space.

The Australian and American firms said they plan to create a “multi-user rocket motor facility” to ensure a more robust supply chain in the Indo-Pacific.

“This facility will also boost regional employment and will provide substantial opportunities for local companies to get involved in the supply chain,” Nioa said on the eve of the INDO PACIFIC 2023 international defense exhibition in Sydney.

Aerojet Portfolio

Earlier this year, L3Harris announced its acquisition of American aerospace firm Aerojet Rocketdyne for $4.7 billion.

The Florida-based firm said it immediately deployed its leadership team to run the business and continue delivering critical capabilities to warfighters.

Its products include warheads for the latest generation of high-speed strike weapons, according to L3Harris.

Aerojet also supported the development of Focused Lethality Munition – a weapon that reportedly reduces collateral damage on the battlefield.

L3Harris and NIOA
L3Harris and NIOA representatives ink a collaboration agreement. Photo: L3Harris

US-Australia Collaboration

L3Harris and NIOA’s partnership comes amid increasing collaboration between the US and Australia in defense.

In 2021, Australia entered into an alliance with Washington and the UK to develop a nuclear submarine fleet as China continues to assert its influence in the Indo-Pacific.

The UK and US also collaborated on cyber resiliency, with the Australian Defence Forces hosting its first “classified-level” military cyber exercise with its American counterpart.

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