General Dynamics Awarded $24 Million F‑35 Lightning II Gun System Contract

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Gen­er­al Dynam­ics Arma­ment and Tech­ni­cal Prod­ucts, a busi­ness unit of Gen­er­al Dynam­ics (NYSE: GD), was award­ed a $23.6 mil­lion con­tract by Lock­heed Mar­tin Corp. for pro­duc­tion of more than two dozen GAU-22/A gun sys­tems for the F‑35 Light­ning II.

The GAU-22/A is a deriv­a­tive of Gen­er­al Dynam­ics’ proven GAU-12/U 25mm Gatling gun, which the com­pa­ny has pro­duced for more than 40 years. The GAU-22/A is a lighter-weight, four-bar­rel ver­sion with improved accu­ra­cy over the GAU-12/U. Gen­er­al Dynam­ics has been man­u­fac­tur­ing GAU-22/A guns for F‑35 air­craft since 2009. 

“The GAU-22/A’s reli­a­bil­i­ty lends a sig­nif­i­cant advan­tage in low­er air­craft main­te­nance costs, while the gun’s high rate of fire and increased range bring air supe­ri­or­i­ty in tac­ti­cal air-to-air and air-to-ground com­bat sit­u­a­tions,” said Steve Elgin, vice pres­i­dent and gen­er­al man­ag­er of arma­ment sys­tems for Gen­er­al Dynam­ics Arma­ment and Tech­ni­cal Products. 

The F‑35 Light­ning II, also known as the Joint Strike Fight­er, is a fifth-gen­er­a­tion mul­ti­role fight­er used by all branch­es of the U.S. mil­i­tary and U.S. allies. An inter­nal­ly mount­ed GAU-22/A gun sys­tem will arm the con­ven­tion­al take-off and land­ing vari­ant (F‑35A), while exter­nal­ly mount­ed gun sys­tems will be used by the short take-off and ver­ti­cal land­ing vari­ant (F‑35B) and car­ri­er ver­sion (F‑35C) of the aircraft. 

Pro­duc­tion will begin in 2012 at Gen­er­al Dynam­ics’ facil­i­ty in Saco, Maine, which employs more than 400 peo­ple. Pro­gram man­age­ment and engi­neer­ing will be per­formed at the Gen­er­al Dynam­ics Tech­nol­o­gy Cen­ter in Willis­ton, Vt. In addi­tion to pro­duc­ing the GAU-22/A, Gen­er­al Dynam­ics’ facil­i­ty in Mar­i­on, Va., sup­plies advanced, light­weight com­pos­ite radomes for the F‑35 air­craft. Gen­er­al Dynam­ics’ Mar­i­on facil­i­ty employs over 450 people. 

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