Maryland Firm Wins $15.6 Million Afghan Blimp Contract

As news reports over the weekend continued to report that President Obama and Afghan President Hamid Karzai are moving toward accelerating the timetable for U.S. troops' departure from Afghanistan, a new contract just announced by the Department of Defense suggests the pullout may not be quite as imminent as suggested.

On Monday, the Pentagon awarded TCOM Limited Liability Partnership a $15.6 million firm-fixed-price delivery order for additional 22M and 28M aerostat parts and spares, "in support of the Army's Persistent Ground Surveillance System Program." PGSS refers to a program whereby the Army floats aerostats (essentially high-tech, stationary blimps) above the ground in Afghanistan to monitor Taliban movements on the ground. Historically, key contractors on this and similar programs have included Raven Industries   (NASDAQ: RAVN  ) , Raytheon (NYSE: RTN  ) , and also Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT  ) . TCOM, in contrast, is a small contractor based in Columbia, Md.

Work on the contract is expected to be complete by May 2013.

 
 
 

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