Lockheed Martin Conducts First Successful Test of Guided Unitary MLRS Rocket
DALLAS, TX, August 28th, 2002 -- Lockheed Martin successfully conducted the first-ever flight test of a unitary warhead version of its Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System (GMLRS) rocket at White Sands Missile Range, N.M. today. The single Guided Unitary MLRS rocket, which will have a range of more than 70 kilometers, impacted in the target area and successfully detonated its warhead.
The Guided Unitary rocket was launched from an MLRS M270 Improved Position Determining System (IPDS) launcher. The Guided Unitary MLRS rocket is a product improvement of the standard GMLRS. The 200+ pound high-explosive warhead is produced by Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control.
"This is an exciting day for the Guided MLRS program, which continues to achieve major successes on a regular basis," said Ron Abbott, vice president - Fire Support for Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. "This was our first full-up flight on the Guided Unitary program, and everything performed just as expected. This rocket will further add to the family of MLRS missile and rocket munitions available to the battlefield commander. As MLRS continues to evolve, it just becomes more and more flexible. I don't believe there's another system that comes close to the power and variety of munitions MLRS offers."
The Guided Unitary program is being funded by Lockheed Martin internal research and development dollars. The current evaluation phase will demonstrate the rocket's capability to leverage existing Guided MLRS technology and identify a path forward to a Pre-Planned Block Improvement program. The Guided Unitary payload was designed and tested for functionality and lethality in April 2002 at White Sands Missile Range.
Guided Unitary MLRS rockets provide the Army with a capability to quickly attack critical point targets with pinpoint accuracy. Because of the precision guidance of the rocket, collateral damage around the impact point is minimal.
The Guided MLRS rocket program is an international cooperative program between the U.S., U.K., Italy, France and Germany.
The Guided MLRS rocket is an Objective Force system that incorporates a GPS-aided inertial guidance package integrated on a product-improved rocket body. Small canards on the guided rocket nose will also provide basic maneuverability and enhance the accuracy of the system. In addition to the IPDS launcher, the Guided MLRS rocket can also be launched from the M270A1 launcher and the HIMARS launcher. Guided MLRS initial operational capability is currently scheduled for CY '05.
Guided MLRS is the next major step in the evolution of the MLRS Family of Munitions, offering advanced capabilities, reduced logistics support and precision attack. The rocket will have a range of approximately 70+ kilometers.
Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control develops, manufactures and integrates world-class air defense, fire support, strike weapon, naval munition, combat vision, anti-armor and advanced product solutions and systems for U.S. and international armed forces.