The Department of Defense has awarded a $10.9 million contract to the BAE Systems unit in Greenlawn for software upgrades to devices that let a U.S. Navy multi-role jet and its electronic warfare variant identify themselves to friendly forces.

The fixed-price contract for the identification friend or foe systems is expected to be completed in January 2018. The software will be added into the U.S. Navy's F/A-18 Hornet, used as a fighter and attack jet, and its EA-18G Growler variant, which provides jamming and electronic protection to U.S. military forces.

advertisement | advertise on newsday

Both aircraft can be based on aircraft carriers.

The upgrade is for software that reports the aircraft's position and velocity to allow safe navigation for friendly aircraft. The information also can be received by air traffic control ground stations as a replacement for secondary radar.

BAE Systems Inc. is the American unit of the multinational defense company BAE Systems PLC based in London. About 650 people are employed at BAE's Greenlawn unit.