The PAC-3 Missile Once Again Hits Its Target
DALLAS, TX, September 16th, 1999 -- Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control - Dallas, the Ballistic Missile Defense Organization and the U.S. Army conducted another successful test flight of a Patriot Advanced Capability (PAC-3) Missile at White Sands Missile Range, N.M., today. The PAC-3 Missile intercepted and destroyed the incoming tactical ballistic missile (TBM) target. Preliminary test data indicate all test objectives were successfully achieved.
This was the second successful intercept of a target by the PAC-3 Missile, and the fourth successful engineering and manufacturing development (EMD) test flight. The first two successful flights of the PAC-3 Missile were conducted during the EMD developmental test phase in late 1997, but neither of those flights involved a target. The first PAC-3 Missile target intercept flight was on March 15, 1999.
"The PAC-3 Missile works and hit-to-kill technology is viable. We proved those once again today with this successful intercept by the PAC-3 Missile," said Jim Berry, president of Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. "I am very pleased with our PAC-3 team. They have done an extraordinary job."
"The PAC-3 Missile program continues to be built upon success," said Mike Trotsky, vice president - air defense programs for Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control - Dallas. "If you consider the two predecessor programs to the PAC-3 Missile, which were ERINT and FLAGE, you'll discover that Missiles and Fire Control - Dallas has conducted eight successful hit-to-kill intercepts with this technology. Now that we have two intercepts in a row under our belt in the PAC-3 EMD phase, we're ready to move forward with a low-rate initial production program."
The PAC-3 Missile is a high velocity, hit-to-kill missile and is the next generation Patriot missile being developed to provide increased capability against advanced theater ballistic missile, cruise missile and hostile aircraft. The PAC-3 Missile kills incoming targets by direct, body-to-body impact. The PAC-3 Missiles, when deployed in a Patriot battery, will significantly increase the Patriot system's firepower, since 16 PAC-3 Missiles load-out on a Patriot launcher, compared with four Patriot missiles.
The PAC-3 Missile flight testing is being conducted in two stages: developmental test (DT) missions and operational test (OT) missions. The first two DT missions were successfully conducted special instrumentation packages in place of the full-up PAC-3 Missile seeker. The missions were structured to verify critical system and missile performance prior to conducting target intercept flight tests. The remaining missions will consist of PAC-3 Missiles against different classes of targets.
In addition to the four successful PAC-3 Missile EMD flight tests, the PAC-3's predecessor missile, the Extended-Range Interceptor, demonstrated three hits in a row during the demonstration/validation program in 1994. Two of those tests involved TBM targets and one involved an air-breathing target (simulating a cruise missile or aircraft).
Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control - Dallas is the prime contractor responsible for the PAC-3 Missile segment upgrade, which consists of the PAC-3 Missile, missile canisters (in four-packs), the fire solution computer and the enhanced launcher electronics system (ELES).
Located in Dallas and Orlando, Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control develops, manufactures and supports advanced combat, missile, rocket and space systems. The company is organized in six program/mission areas: Strike Weapons, Air Defense, Anti-Armor, Fire Control and Sensors, Fire Support and Product Development. Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control is headed by President James F. Berry.
Missiles and Fire Control is an operating element of the Lockheed Martin Electronics Sector, based in Bethesda, MD, and the Lockheed Martin Corporation, also based in Bethesda.