US Marines Order Loitering Munitions From Teledyne FLIR

Teledyne FLIR has secured a $12-million contract to supply loitering munitions for the US Marine Corps Organic Precision Fires-Light (OPF-L) program.

The agreement supports the agency’s objectives to employ a deployable weapon system that protects dismounted infantry rifle squad personnel against beyond-line-of-sight threats.

Under the order, the company will provide 127 loitering munition systems to the Marines.

This tranche will be used for assessments in the summer that will add information to the weapons’ functionality prior to their full-scale production.

Work will be performed in five years and could be extended through an additional three-year option.

“The flexibility, adaptability and breadth of our proposed OPF-L platform will boost small unit lethality across the large target set Marines must confront in today’s battlespace,” Teledyne FLIR Defense Executive Vice President Dr. JihFen Lei stated

“We look forward to delivering on this highly advanced technology and working closely with the Marine Corps to augment its force projection – and protection – capabilities.”

Organic Precision Fires-Light

Solicitation for the OPF-L was revealed in September 2023. The notice required pitches for a man-packable suite incorporating a loitering munition, ground control station, batteries, training simulator, ancillary equipment, and training and support services for testing.

The program also stipulated works for systems engineering, quality assurance, program management, and logistics support.

US loitering munition
A US soldier launching a man-portable loitering munition. Photo: Cpl. Jennessa Davey/US Marine Corps

The potential eight-year effort could increase to $249 million if all options from selected vendors are exercised.

Alongside Teledyne FLIR, the Marine Corps Systems Command awarded Aerovironment and Anduril Industries contracts for the program.

Latest Loitering Munition Projects

The US launched market research in 2023 to select potential industry partners to develop air-launched loitering munitions for the Marine Corps. 

Resulting solutions are expected to have greater maneuverability and range compared to the agency’s existing airborne weapons, including the Hellfire air-to-ground precision strike missile.

The US Marine Corps revealed plans to replace Hellfires with loitering solutions the same year. 

In 2021, the service partnered with an Israeli defense contractor to provide its armored vehicles of mid-range loitering munitions with “smart” capabilities.

Related Articles

Back to top button