The MoD is to spend £180 million on three Integrated Gunnery Systems for the Royal Navy.
The contract has been awarded to BAE systems to build the Maritime Indirect Fires System (MIFS) and a trainer system designed for the Type 26 fleet.
The MIFS includes the 5-inch, 62-caliber MK 45 Mod Naval Gun System.
The Minister for Defence Procurement, Harriett Baldwin MP, said:
“Our growing defence budget means we can invest in a cutting edge weapon system for the Royal Navy’s next generation Global Combat Ship at the best value for taxpayers. Along with sustaining highly skilled jobs across the country, this contract underlines our commitment and demonstrates continued momentum in the program.”
The guns are used by 11 allied forces, including the US.
According to BAE Systems, the MK 45 Mod has a range of 20 nautical miles.
It is being fit to US Navy DDG 51 Class destroyers and fleets from South Korea, Japan and Denmark.
Joe Senftle, Vice President and General Manager of Weapon Systems at BAE Systems, said:
“Our teams in the US and UK will bring unrivalled skills and expertise to the MIFS development and production.”
"The world-leading Mk 45 will provide the Royal Navy with a proven, reliable, and highly-effective system that is adaptable to firing a wide range of today’s ammunition, as well as future, precision-guided munitions currently in development.”
The government is committed to buying eight of the Type 26 Global Combat ships in its 2015 Strategic Defence Review but there have been questions over their costs amid possible delays.
Announcing a further £472 million investment in the ships development last year, Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said:
"These highly advanced ships will help keep Britain safe and support our ship-building industry. Investing in them is part of our plan to increase defence spending so our Armed Forces have the most modern equipment they need."