After lending some of its most advanced air defense systems, the United States recently revealed plans to procure new Patriot missile systems.

The US Army awarded American aerospace and defense manufacturing giant Raytheon Technologies a whopping $1.2-billion contract to assemble Patriot Missile System fire units.

The deal was made after the Pentagon vowed to deliver Ukraine with the advanced Patriot air defense system last December to strengthen the latter’s long-range capabilities and air defense against Russian invasion.

The US Department of Defense (DoD) also noted that the contract would include funds for a fiscal 2023 foreign military sale previously made with Switzerland.

It is expected to be completed by December 2032.

PATRIOT: Arguably the World’s Most Advanced Air Defense System

The MIM-104 PATRIOT, shortened for Phased Array Tracking Radar for Intercept on Target, is a surface-to-air missile (SAM) system built by Raytheon Technologies in the 1970s, primarily for the US Army. It has four major operational functions, including wide-range communications, command and control, radar surveillance, power generator, and missile guidance, providing troops with a coordinated, secure, integrated, and mobile air defense system.

The Patriot has a wide range of capabilities depending on the interceptors fired, usually loaded with four PAC-2 or 16 PAC-3 missiles.