U.S. Army awards Lockheed Martin $206 million contract

The U.S. Army announced on Monday that it placed an order valued at $206 million with Lockheed Martin for the AN/TPQ-53, a long-range counterfire weapon that detects incoming fire from 360 degrees.

The order is for 19 Q-53 systems. Lockheed Martin has delivered 32 Q-53 systems to the Army to date and received an order in March 2012 for an additional 33 systems. The order from March 2012 is currently in production.

"The Q-53 radar is helping to save the lives of U.S. forces through its exceptional performance in theater" Lockheed Martin's Mission Systems & Training's Counterfire Target Acquisition Radar Program Director Lee Flake said. "Deployed since 2010, we have listened to feedback from our soldiers to ensure the system meets operational demands and is evolving to stay ahead of global threats."

The Q-53 unit is attached atop of a five-ton truck. It can be controlled and operated remotely from a laptop computer from a climate-controlled command vehicle.

Lockheed Martin won the contracts with the U.S. Army in 2008 after exhibiting early program success to the U.S. Army's declared needs. The first order placed was for 12 units in July 2008, followed by 20 units in April 2010; these units were deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan in fall 2010.

Lockheed Martin is based in Syracuse, N.Y. The units will be built at a facility in the company's headquarters in Syracuse and in other facilities in Moorestown, N.J., Akron, Ohio and Clearwater, Fla.