General Dynamics Splits $94 Million Flare-Round Contract

The Department of Defense issued 14 separate contract awards Tuesday, totaling just over $880 million in combined value. Of these, the second-biggest contract awarded -- $94.2 million in maximum value -- was split between two winners.

Privately held IMT Defense Corp. and the Ordnance and Tactical Systems division of publicly traded General Dynamics (NYSE: GD  ) were both named winners of a  contract to supply M485A2 Projectile Metal Parts to the U.S. Army.

The M485A2 is a 155mm shell that's essentially a "flare" round. Fired from an artillery system, the round explodes in midair, releasing a canister at 600 meters height that floats to the ground on a parachute, falling at 5 meters per second, and emitting 1 million candle power illumination for troops on the ground. One flare thus provides illumination for about two minutes. One million candlepower is considered sufficient to illuminate a circle of ground 1 kilometer across.

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