Lockheed Martin-Built Trident Ii D5 Missile Achieves 124 Successful Test Launches In A Row
SUNNYVALE, Calif., 08/26/2008 -- The U.S. Navy conducted a successful test launch yesterday of two Trident II D5 Fleet Ballistic Missiles (FBMs) built by Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT). The Navy launched the unarmed missiles from the submerged submarine USS Louisiana (SSBN 743) in thePacific Ocean.
The Trident II D5 missile now has achieved 124 consecutive successful test launches since 1989 – a record unmatched by any other large ballistic missile or space launch vehicle.
In this recent test, Navy Strategic Systems Programs has again demonstrated the reliability and credibility of the Fleet Ballistic Missile, said Melanie A. Sloane, vice president of Fleet Ballistic Missile programs, Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company, the Navy's Trident missile prime contractor. A long partnership combined with disciplined performance by the entire Navy and industry team in every aspect of this critical program has made each and every one of these 124 test launches a success.
The Navy launched the missiles as part of a Follow-on Commander's Evaluation Test. The Navy conducts a continuing series of operational system evaluation tests to assure the safety, reliability, readiness and performance of the Trident II D5 Strategic Weapon System, as required by the Department of Defense's National Command Authority. The tests are conducted under the testing guidelines of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
For the tests, operational missiles are converted into inert configurations using test missile kits produced by Lockheed Martin that contain range safety devices and flight telemetry instrumentation.
First deployed in 1990, the D5 missile is currently aboard OHIO-class submarines and British VANGUARD-class submarines. The three-stage, solid-propellant, inertial-guided ballistic missile can travel a nominal range of 4,000 nautical miles and carries multiple independently targeted reentry vehicles.
Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company, Sunnyvale, Calif., is the prime contractor and program manager for the U.S. Navy's Trident missile. Lockheed Martin Space Systems employees, principally in California, Georgia, Florida, Washington and Utah, support the design, development, production, test and operation of the Trident Strategic Weapon System. Lockheed Martin Space Systems has been the Navy's prime strategic missile contractor since the inception of the program more than 50 years ago.
The test also involved the Lockheed Martin-integrated Navigation Subsystem that provides the highly-accurate and reliable navigation data required to support today's stringent Trident Weapon System performance requirements. Lockheed Martin Maritime Systems & Sensors Undersea Systems business unit, Mitchel Field, N.Y., has been the Navy's prime contractor for the Navigation Subsystem aboard FBM submarines since 1955.
Altogether, nearly 3,000 employees throughout the Lockheed Martin Corporation support the Navy's Fleet Ballistic Missile program.
Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security company that employs about 140,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services.