The Boeing [NYSE: BA] Company delivered the 100,000th tail kit on December 2 for the Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM) weapon to the U.S. Military at its weapons facility near St. Louis.
During the delivery ceremony, U.S. Air Force Major General Robert Chedister, commander of the Air Armament Center at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., praised the St. Charles, Mo., based team responsible for producing the JDAM tail kit.
Boeing began producing the JDAM tail kits in 1998, which provide near precision capability to Mk 80 series bombs through GPS satellite-aided navigation. Initial production was 900 tail kits per year, but following the September 11, 2001 attack; tail kit production skyrocketed to 3,000 tail kits per month.
The U.S Air Force was the first JDAM customer and in six years, has received more than half of all JDAMs produced. The U.S Navy has received more than 37,000 JDAMs, with the remaining produced for international customers.
The JDAM is a satellite-controlled, near-precision weapon ranging in size from 500 to 2,000 pounds. The 500-pound variant is the newest member of the JDAM family and is being used extensively in operations in Iraq and Afghanistan .
A unit of The Boeing Company, Integrated Defense Systems is one of the world's largest space and defense businesses. Headquartered in St. Louis, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is a $27 billion business. It provides systems solutions to its global military, government and commercial customers. It is a leading provider of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance; the world's largest military aircraft manufacturer; the world's largest satellite manufacturer and a leading provider of space-based communications; the primary systems integrator for U.S. missile defense; NASA's largest contractor; and a global leader in launch services.