US seeks new portable anti-air missile to replace the Stinger

Candidates will have to show a technology demonstration in FY24

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The U.S. Army is seeking to upgrade its Stinger man-portable air-defense system so that soldiers can shoot down aircraft more efficiently.  

"The current Stinger inventory is in decline," the U.S. Army wrote in a March 28 solicitation posted on Sam.gov. "The Army plans to begin design, development, and test of a replacement missile in FY23 leading to the production of 10,000 M-Shorad Inc. 3 missiles beginning in FY27." 

FILE: US soldiers aim a Stinger missile launcher during a military exercise in Yeonchun, South Korea

FILE: US soldiers aim a Stinger missile launcher during a military exercise in Yeonchun, South Korea (Photo by Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images)

The Army’s plans to overhaul its Stingers, calls for "soldier-portable" solutions, but notes that the system must be able to integrate with the Stinger Vehicle Universal Launcher.

The new Stingers must be able to destroy helicopters and planes "with capabilities equal to or greater than the current Stinger missile."

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"The system must provide improved target acquisition with increased lethality and ranges over current capability," the Army said in its RFI. "Candidate solutions must be capable and suitable for maneuver force operations in all battlefield environments." 

Ukrainian military officials say the wreckage is the remains of a Russian Air Force assault aircraft, in a field outside the town of Volnovakha in the Donetsk region, Ukraine, in this handout picture released March 4, 2022.  

Ukrainian military officials say the wreckage is the remains of a Russian Air Force assault aircraft, in a field outside the town of Volnovakha in the Donetsk region, Ukraine, in this handout picture released March 4, 2022.   (Reuters)

Candidates will have to show a technology demonstration in FY24, consisting of a "digital simulation, hardware in-the-loop and/or live-fire demonstration." 

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The request for information comes as the Pentagon has been supplying Ukrainian fighters with Javelin and Stinger missiles to fight Russian invaders. The war has accelerated talks about how to enhance the U.S.’ existing weapons capabilities.