BETHESDA, Md. , Jan. 7 /PRNewswire/ -- Lockheed Martin-developed missile defense system elements led global ballistic missile defense efforts in 2008 with five successful target intercepts, including two international intercepts, and numerous next-generation milestones. With proven hit-to-kill technologies and demonstrated reliability, Lockheed Martin has firmly-positioned each phase of missile defense - boost, midcourse and terminal - to support the U.S. Missile Defense Agency's (MDA) layered Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) System and allied nations' requirements in 2009 and beyond.
Lockheed Martin's unparalleled BMD hit-to-kill intercept record includes 16 successful Aegis BMD intercepts, five successful Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD (TM)) intercepts and 16 successful Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3 (TM)) intercepts since 2001.
"Lockheed Martin-developed weapon system elements and critical technologies continue to protect our great nation and its international allies against ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, aircraft and other airborne threats," said John Holly , Lockheed Martin vice president of Huntsville Operations. "The Lockheed Martin team is working with the MDA to develop and prove, through rigorous testing, next-generation systems that answer challenges presented by the very real threats we face today and the even more challenging threats we will face in the future."
Lockheed Martin's many operational systems and next-generation capabilities have demonstrated consistent reliability and illustrate the progress being made in support of a strong layered missile defense.
2008 Missile Defense Milestones:
-- In November, the MDA's Airborne Laser (ABL) team successfully fired the High Energy Laser for the first time through the Lockheed Martin-developed Beam Control/Fire Control System. In ground tests in the ABL aircraft at Edwards Air Force Base, CA, the system focused and directed the beam through the aircraft's conformal window into a range simulator. Further testing of the boost-phase ABL system will culminate in an airborne intercept test against a ballistic missile in 2009.
-- In January, Lockheed Martin received a
Aegis Open Architecture was installed on USS Bunker Hill as a key component of the Navy's Cruiser Modernization Program. Using commercial off-the-shelf computing hardware and open system software, the Aegis Open Architecture provides easy integration of technology refreshes and capability upgrades that will keep the technology leading-edge. This milestone in Aegis Open Architecture is part of the development path to merge Aegis Open Architecture and Aegis BMD in 2012, when the Aegis Modernization program begins for the Navy's 62 Aegis-equipped destroyers.
The Aegis system's second successful terminal phase endo-atmospheric
intercept, in June, set the tone for the test and evaluation of the latest
version of Aegis BMD - Aegis
In a one-time emergency mission, Lockheed Martin modified the USS Lake Erie's Aegis BMD Weapon System to successfully intercept an errant U.S. satellite in the exo-atmosphere in February. The Aegis system prevented the satellite from re-entering the Earth's atmosphere in an uncontrolled and dangerous manner by guiding an interceptor from the MK 41 Vertical Launching System to the terminal phase of intercept.