Lockheed Martin's PAC-3 Missiles Successfully Intercept Two Targets During Flight Test at White Sands Missile Range
DALLAS, TX, 18-NOV-04 --
Lockheed Martin’s [NYSE: LMT] Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) Missile successfully intercepted two missile targets today during Developmental Test/Operational Test-12 (DT/OT-12), the most complex flight test scenario to date for PAC-3. During the initial phase of the test, conducted at White Sands Missile Range, NM, six missiles were in the air simultaneously.
In DT/OT-12, a total of four PAC-3 Missiles were ripple-fired against two separate targets: a Patriot-As-A-Target (PAAT) modified to represent a short-range Tactical Ballistic Missile (TBM) and a medium velocity Storm Maneuvering Tactical Target Vehicle. The mission sequence was a two missile ripple-fire against the modified PAAT, closely followed by a two missile ripple-fire against the Storm target. Once the targets were intercepted and destroyed, the two remaining PAC-3s executed a preplanned self-destruct sequence.
Test objectives included demonstrating the system’s capability to detect, track, engage and intercept two simultaneously arriving, threat representative TBM targets, and to validate the performance of several components of the PAC-3 Missile that were part of on-going cost reduction initiatives. Preliminary data indicates that all test objectives were achieved.
Also taking part in today’s test was the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) radar. The THAAD radar tracked the two target missiles. Although not part of the test objectives, the THAAD radar was able to participate and reduce risk as the THAAD system leads up to its own flight testing next year.
“With today's test, we have wrapped up the near-term PAC-3 flight test program to successfully demonstrate the cut-in of cost reduction hardware,” said Colonel John Vaughn, U.S. Army Lower Tier Air and Missile Defense project manager. “I couldn't be happier with the results, but more than that I'm proud of the professionalism and expertise of our air defense soldiers from Ft. Bliss who so flawlessly executed these last three tests. It's a great reflection upon their outstanding ability to get the job done, and is truly characteristic of the high caliber personnel that are part of the PAC-3 team.”
“We continue to demonstrate the capabilities of the PAC-3 Missile in increasingly taxing scenarios, and it consistently proves to be the most reliable, advanced air defense missile deployed today,” said Steve Graham, Lockheed Martin’s vice president - PAC-3 Missile program. “Our goal is to prove that the system is mature and capable of defending soldiers in the field from numerous threats. We are very proud of the PAC-3s performance.”
Lockheed Martin is the only provider of proven hit-to-kill missile defense systems capable of defeating weapons of mass destruction, including missiles carrying biological, chemical and nuclear payloads. The PAC-3 Missile, THAAD and the Medium Extended Air Defense System (MEADS), which utilizes the PAC-3, are elements of the terminal defense layer of the National Ballistic Missile Defense System.
Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control is prime contractor on the PAC-3 Missile Segment upgrade to the Patriot air defense system. The PAC-3 Missile Segment upgrade consists of the PAC-3 Missile, a highly agile hit-to-kill interceptor, the PAC-3 Missile canisters (in four packs), a Fire Solution Computer and an Enhanced Launcher Electronics System.
The PAC-3 Missile has been selected as the primary interceptor for the multi-national MEADS program. Managed by the NATO MEADS Management Agency (NAMEADSMA), MEADS is a model transatlantic development program focused on the next generation of air and missile defense. MEADS will focus on risk reduction, application of key technologies and validation of a system design incorporating the PAC-3 Missile as the prime interceptor.
The Patriot PAC-3 program is managed by the U.S. Army and executed by the Army Program Executive Office, Air, Space and Missile Defense and the Lower Tier Air and Missile Defense Project Office in Huntsville, AL.
Lockheed Martin is a world leader in systems integration and the development of air and missile defense systems and technologies, including the first operational hit-to-kill missile defense system. It also has considerable experience in missile design and production, infrared seekers, command and control/battle management, and communications, precision pointing and tracking optics, as well as radar and signal processing. The company makes significant contributions to all major U.S. missile defense systems and participates in several global missile defense partnerships.