BAE Systems North America, NASHUA, N.H.: BAE Systems has been selected by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Advanced Technology Office to convert a 60 millimeter mortar into a precision guided munitions system.

DARPA's Optically Directed Attack Munition (ODAM) program is a technology development and integration initiative to demonstrate a laser-guided, low cost optical seeker for the 60mm mortar. The total value, if all phases of the development program are completed, will be approximately $9 million. The systems will improve U.S. military effectiveness by providing small, operational units with cost-effective precision indirect munitions systems capable of operating across multiple environments.

Dr. Doug Kirkpatrick, DARPA program manager, said that ODAM represents “a break-through in affordable, precision-guided munitions.”

“ODAM will provide a new capability for the war fighter based on low-cost, precision optical guidance of a munition that has never been able to operate with precision in the past,” said Aaron Penkacik, vice president of Advanced Systems and Technology for BAE Systems.

The ODAM program will occur over 24 months and culminates in a live-fire demonstration and delivery of 1,000 live rounds for government test and evaluation.

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BAE Systems North America is one of America's foremost national security, aerospace and information systems companies. It is a leading provider of electronic and information-based systems and knowledge-based solutions that meet our customers' mission effectiveness and operational safety needs. BAE Systems North America employs more than 30,000 people at sites across the United States and the United Kingdom and generates more than $5 billion in annual sales.