The new weapon is intended to replace the Paveway III guided bomb, the most commonly used munition in the 2003 'shock and awe' bombing of Iraq.
EDO MBM Technology Ltd (now owned by ITT Corp) are UK design and production partners on the new 'smart bomb' with Raytheon, Portsmouth Aviation, and Thales.
Once again EDO MBM is found to be at the heart of UK and joint US/UK military operations in Iraq and Afganistan.
'The MBM Technology design provides all structural, mechanical and electrical links between the aircraft and the weapon guidance and fusing systems. It will incorporate a universal interface allowing the weapon to fit current and future aircraft.'
A Raytheon 2004 press release reports
'It is a joint programme between RSL in the UK and Raytheon Missile Systems (RMS) in Tucson, Arizona. RSL in Harlow is the Weapon Design Authority, providing Systems Engineering, Programme Management and Aircraft Integration, and the RSL Glenrothes plant manufactures the GAINS (GPS Aided Inertial Navigation System), and RMS in Tucson is the DA for the Warhead and ECCG (Enhanced Computer Control Group) and undertakes final assembly and test of the ECCG.'
'Raytheon's UK Paveway Team also includes Portsmouth Aviation Limited (Air Foil Group and Navalised containers) and EDO MBM Technology in Brighton (Aircraft Umbilical Interconnect System and Quad Containers). Thales Missile Electronics Ltd in Basingstoke is developing and manufacturing the PGB Fuze, a state-of-the-art ‘intelligent' fuze with full cockpit interface.'
This week Janes Defense Weekly reports
'UK RAF clears Paveway IV for operational use'
'The UK Royal Air Force (RAF) will have hundreds of Raytheon Paveway IV precision guided munitions before the end of the year following the successful conclusion of testing in July.'
'Testing took place at the Naval Air Warfare Center China Lake in the United States, with 14 tests taking place between 3 June and 22 July 2008 from a BAe/McDonnell Douglas Harrier GR.9 attack aircraft.
Protests against the presence of EDO MBM in Brighton have been ongoing since 2004.