Improving Response Time in Joint All-Domain Environments with Long Range Precision Fires
Michael Williamson, Tactical & Strike Missiles Vice President
Lockheed Martin is in the business of solving problems for our customers. Right now, the U.S. Army has an immediate need to extend its precision strike reach and we’re working to provide them with a multifaceted solution.
Long-Range Precision Fires (LRPF) is more than just a name – it’s the ability to influence the battlespace from a distance as part of a larger, complex joint all-domain operation environment.
The needs and priorities of the U.S. Army continually evolve – I saw this during my 30+ year military career; specifically, in my time as an air defense artillery officer. The time it takes to detect and respond to a threat has steadily decreased over the years with the introduction of new technologies and new processes.
Our adversaries have access to more technology than ever before, and our ability to respond to potential threats quickly and accurately is increasingly important.
That’s why at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control, we’re hard at work developing cutting edge strike weapons, sensors and effects that work together across all domains from undersea to space and cyberspace.
We must provide our military men and women with affordable, reliable and innovative capabilities for them to be effective against a near peer adversary. So, how are we doing this?
Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS) Family of Munitions
To cover the entire battlespace, you need multiple systems that work together.
The interoperability between intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) assets, launchers and missiles is critical to maintaining advantage in an all-domain environment.
Lockheed Martin’s High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) is a highly reliable fielded system that is at the center of it all. Its ability to interface with key assets on the ground and in the air make it a key player in the LRPF strategy. Joint and coalition commanders can rapidly position HIMARS using C-130 aircraft to provide flexible deployment options and HIMARS fires a suite of precision munitions that range from 70 to 499+ km.
The Extended-Range Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System (ER GMLRS) is a new round that increases the capability and flexibility of the current GMLRS while allowing improved battlespace coverage. We’ve taken an existing system and applied technologies to maintain its famed accuracy while reaching targets up to 150 km.
Our new Precision Strike Missile (PrSM) extends the range of precision fire even further and is also launched from the HIMARS. PrSM is capable of neutralizing and destroying targets at ranges up to 499+ kilometers and provides another precise tool that can be utilized in nearly any battlespace.
Watch the video at the right for a demonstration of how these capabilities integrate to provide full-spectrum battlefield coverage.
A Future In Hypersonics
The window of time for the decision-making process continues to be compressed.
Near-peer adversaries are rapidly developing capabilities to advance their superiority across all domains, so it is imperative for us to maintain an advantage.
That’s why hypersonic capabilities will play an important role in the U.S. Army’s LRPF strategy.
They will provide the ability to employ various tactics at long ranges and greatly reduce the time that’s required for engagement on the target.
Lockheed Martin is a world leader in the field of hypersonics and we’re bringing facilities online that allow us to more quickly transition development projects into deliverable production programs.
The bottom line is this – LRPF solutions require a network of systems working together seamlessly on the battlefield. There is no one-button solution to fill this need, but Lockheed Martin is ready and able to provide the 21st century warfighter with every tool they need to complete their mission.
About the Author
Tactical & Strike Missiles Vice President
Michael oversees Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control’s Tactical and Strike Missiles line of business which includes Precision Fires & Combat Maneuver Systems, Close Combat Systems and Hypersonic Strike Systems.
Prior to this role, Michael led MFC’s Sensors & Global Sustainment portfolio and Program Performance.