Going Mach 5, or over 60 miles per minute, creates a number of complex engineering and physics challenges which is why Lockheed Martin leverages expertise and technology from across the corporation to tackle these challenges with speed, agility and ingenuity. As one of the Department of Defense’s highest technical priorities, our scientists and engineers are developing game-changing hypersonic solutions.
Hypersonic weapons and air and missile defense are key priorities of the United States Department of Defense's National Defense Strategy and Missile Defense Review.
Lockheed Martin has invested in developing and demonstrating hypersonic technology for over 60 years. As a result of this investment, we are at the forefront of operationalizing hypersonic capabilities, systems and engineering.
We are combining our leadership in missile defense, space and advanced materials, which is a combination no other company possesses. Lockheed Martin is uniquely situated to be able to deliver hypersonic strike systems as well as the ability to detect, track and defeat hypersonic threats.
We continue to lead the development of these emerging technologies in support of our customer's missions as new threats emerge.
Leading Hypersonic Solutions
Lockheed Martin is developing game-changing hypersonic solutions to ensure our customers are always ready for what’s ahead. In partnership with DARPA, the U.S. Air Force, U.S. Army and U.S. Navy, we are working multiple programs to rapidly transition hypersonic concepts from the drawing board to the battlefield through efficient and affordable flight tests.
Lockheed Martin’s Chief Technology Officer and VP Steve Walker and VP, Advanced Program Development, Space Eric Scherff explain the advantages of hypersonic systems and Lockheed Martin's expertise in scaling complex weapon systems and leadership in hypersonics.
Hypersonic Weapon Systems
Advanced missile and hypersonic vehicle technologies will enhance end-to-end strike force systems, increasing the potential for deterring future threats.
Air-Launched Rapid Response Weapon (ARRW)
The Air-Launched Rapid Response Weapon (ARRW) program matures critical technologies to high speed flight and accelerates the weaponization of Hypersonic strike capabilities. The ARRW program brings corporation-wide experience in design, manufacturing, integration and test, and fielding of complex technologies to our customers in the Department of Defense.
Conventional Prompt Strike (CPS)
Long-Range Hypersonic Weapon (LRHW)
LRHW will leverage the common hypersonic glide body and introduce a new class of ultrafast and maneuverable long-range missiles with the ability to launch from ground mobile platforms.
Hypersonic systems operate at speeds that require rapid reaction and accurate response. We are developing technology that is incredibly fast and precise to defend the nation and our allies against hypersonic threats. Hypersonic defensive capabilities require a multi-layered approach across all phases of flight detection, tracking and interception. Integration and interoperability are vital elements to connect each layer of this architecture.
Hypersonic defense systems are an urgent priority for America’s missile defense enterprise. Lockheed Martin is investing in and leveraging expertise across our company to meet our customers’ hypersonic defense missions and make them a reality.
Solving Hypersonic Challenges
Hypersonic systems are a game-changer for national security. Creating hypersonic technology presents several tough, complex engineering challenges. Hypersonic systems will travel at Mach 5 and potentially even faster. To give you an idea, at Mach 5, you’re traveling over a mile per second. Creating a system that fast means overcoming a number of difficult engineering and physics challenges:
Investing in the American Hypersonics Workforce
Over the past two years, we have launched a factory site for hypersonic production in Courtland, Alabama and enhanced our development capability at Grand Prairie, Texas to support multiple hypersonic programs.
We are working with a network of universities to establish new curricula for future hypersonics professionals, develop partnerships with professors and students, and develop professional training tools for our current employees.
Skunk Works Innovation
Just like most Skunk Works® projects, the team supporting the film and the development of the Darkstar aircraft continued their work in secrecy. Our Skunks worked with the film production team to understand their needs, then quietly worked on the design and build until the concept was revealed to the world in the film.