Air Force to improve Military Code GPS receivers

A $52.6 million contract with Raytheon calls for modernizing the Miniature Airborne GPS receiver 2000 as the service shifts to stronger, jam-resistant signals.

The Air Force is continuing to upgrade its Global Positioning System performance with a $52.6 million contract awarded to Raytheon for modernization of the Miniature Airborne GPS receiver 2000, known at MAGR-2K. The work will involve the testing and delivery of a Military Code (M-Code)/automatic dependent surveillance and broadcast-capable system.

Under the terms of the deal, Raytheon will also account for future upgrades, designing out anticipated obsolescence issues while providing for open systems architecture approaches, according to the contract announcement.

The contract continues the military’s congressionally mandated move to M-Code, which operates in a separate part of the electromagnetic spectrum from civilian signals and produces a high-powered, jam-resistant signal that can help the services operate in contested environments. It features better security, frequency modulation techniques and messaging formats. Congress has mandated that the military buy nothing but M-Code GPS equipment by 2018.

Last year, the Air Force awarded Rockwell Collins a $36.6 million contract for M-Code capable equipment, as well as a $21.8 million deal to support the joint Military GPS User Equipment program and a $8.3 million modification to an earlier contract awarded to L-3 Communications.

The new contract also will support the MAGR-2K-M Operational Flight Program, any required modification of any MAGR-2K-M firmware and the environmental and functional testing and qualification of the MAGR-2K-M system. Work is expected to be completed by July 11, 2019.