CAMDEN, ARKANSAS, April 13, 2009
Lockheed Martin officially rolled out the new Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) Weapon System launcher and Fire Control and Communications unit today in a ceremony at the company’s THAAD Launcher Integration Complex in Camden, AR.
The ceremony, attended by U.S. Senator Mark Pryor and U.S. Congressman Mark Ross, commemorated the delivery of the first THAAD ground segment vehicles to come off the production line in Camden.
The new hardware will be delivered to Soldiers at Fort Bliss, TX, who will have a fully operational THAAD battery (equipment and personnel) by the end of 2009.
“What the hardworking employees of Lockheed Martin’s Camden Operations have accomplished in such a short time is a testament to their dedication to our troops,” said U.S. Senator Mark Pryor. “It gives me great pride to know that one of the world’s most advanced and proven air defense systems is produced, in part, here in the great state of Arkansas.”
“The THAAD system will play a pivotal role in our nation’s missile defense, and today’s rollout is an encouraging sign of the tremendous progress we’re making in this vital technology,” said U.S. Congressman Mike Ross. “The Camden area employees of Lockheed Martin have a long history of success and today is no exception. I thank them for their hard work in providing our military with the technology it needs to protect and defend our troops and our homeland.”
“This is truly a great day for air defenders,” said Tom McGrath, vice president of the THAAD program at Lockheed Martin. “We are proud to deliver this proven air defense capability to our forces. We are seeing the incredible power of THAAD to protect our Warfighters and population centers with each successful test flight, and now we are seeing the reality of production hardware rolling off the line.”
Lockheed Martin is the prime contractor and systems integrator for the THAAD Weapon System. The company’s new 200,000 square-foot Launcher Integration Complex at Camden Operations currently has an employee population of approximately 600.
“This is an outstanding example of government/industry partnership to achieve great things for the Warfighter,” said Glenn David Woods, Camden Operations plant manager for Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. “Our commitment is to produce the world’s most advanced and effective air defense capability for our Soldiers and allies.”
THAAD is a trademark of Lockheed Martin Corporation.