Lockheed Martin-Developed Systems, Capabilities LED Ballistic Missile Defense Efforts in 2008

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...

Last year the SBIRS team achieved key integration and test milestones on the first geosynchronous orbit (GEO) spacecraft, including a comprehensive acoustic and pyroshock test regimen that validated the overall satellite design, quality of workmanship and survivability during space vehicle launching and on-orbit operations. Thermal vacuum testing of the completed GEO-1 space vehicle, which will validate its performance at temperature extremes greater than those expected during on-orbit operations, is planned for 2009 in preparation for delivery to the U.S. Air Force in fiscal year 2010.

Targets and Countermeasures

-- Under the MDA's Targets and Countermeasures Prime Contract, Lockheed Martin successfully launched three target missiles in 2008 - one for the June 5 test of the sea-based Aegis BMD system, one for the June 25 test of the THAAD system, and one for the November 19 test of the Japanese Aegis system. Since its first prime contract mission in 2005, Lockheed Martin has achieved 13 successes in 14 missions. Including targets provided prior to the prime contract, Lockheed Martin has achieved a 97 percent mission success rate, with a total of 30 successes out of 31 missions since 1996. In 2008, Lockheed Martin also validated the new "ship and shoot" approach, under which each target vehicle will be fully-integrated prior to shipment to the test range, and completed most of the flight hardware and integration for the first mission of the next-generation Flexible Target Family.


-- In May, the U.S. Army activated its first THAAD battery at Fort Bliss, TX. In preparation for full-system fielding in 2009, the Alpha Battery/4th Air Defense Artillery Regiment was unit-trained on THAAD equipment.

In June, THAAD achieved its first successful intercept of a separated target in the mid endo-atmosphere. The separated target represented a new target class over the unitary targets previously used, and the test successfully demonstrated the system's ability to detect, track, discriminate, and intercept against separated targets. THAAD has achieved nine for nine successful flight tests since 2005.

Lockheed Martin plays a critical role in the nation's layered air and missile defense system being used today. In addition to operational defenses, Lockheed Martin provides the backbone systems that integrate the sensors, command and control, and weapon system elements of the ballistic missile defense system. The corporation also is focused on next-generation capabilities and provides targets and other methods to test system elements.

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, and radar and signal processing. The company makes significant contributions to major U.S. missile defense systems and participates in several global missile defense partnerships.

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. The corporation reported 2007 sales of $41.9 billion.

SOURCE Lockheed Martin