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North Korea Tests a New Ground Mobile Ballistic Missile

February 13, 2017 by · Comment
Filed under: Syndicated Industry News 
North Korea appears to have employed technologies used in submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBMs) to develop a new type of intermediate-range ballistic missile tested Saturday. The SLBM launched in August carried the name Pukguksong-1, ("North Star"); the official announcement about the missile test called the new missile Pukguksong-2.
              

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New Evidence of Russian Iskander M Missile Deployment in Syria

January 6, 2017 by · Comment
Filed under: Russia, Syndicated Industry News 
Satellite imagery analysis by Imagesat International (ISI) intelligence experts revealed deployment of Iskandar (SS-26 “Stone”) advanced missile system vehicles as part of the Russian deployment. Iskander units were first spotted at Hmeimim airbase in Latakia, Syria in March 2016.
              

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North Korea Unveil Miniaturized Nuclear Warhead for Missiles

March 9, 2016 by · Comment
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Fateh 110 missiles in Iran, Syria and Lebanon

November 22, 2014 by · Comment
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Airshow China 2014 Photo Report – Strike Weapons

November 14, 2014 by · Comment
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Supersonic cruise missile launched from mobile launchers extends the reach of Chinese coastal defenses

November 11, 2014 by · Comment
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India Test Launch Third Agni-4 Ballistic Missile

January 20, 2014 by · Comment
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New ICBM Under Development in Russia

October 6, 2013 by · Comment
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Modernizing the Russian Strategic Missile Force (RVSN)

October 6, 2013 by · Comment
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Washington Seek Interoperability with Seoul’s Evolving Missile Defense

October 3, 2013 by · Comment
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India Conducts a Second Test of Agni V IRBM

September 14, 2013 by · Comment
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More Missile Defense Work for Raytheon

As the Fiscal Year 2012 comes to an end contracts continue to be awarded although they should dry up as the government moves to begin closing out the books on this year and begin executing next year’s budget. FY 2013 looks to start with an extended Continuing Resolution Authority (CRA) which could limit what can be done with available funds.

One program that has had steady awards is Raytheon’s (RTN) work producing the SM-3 missile for the U.S. Missile Defense Agency (MDA). The SM-3 is part of the ship based AEGIS system and is optimized to engage enemy ballistic missiles. Further versions are being developed to deal with more complicated and longer range threats but the SM-3 has been tested several times in Hawaii and is equipping the U.S. and Japanese AEGIS ships.

The most recent award was for 19 missiles and has a value of over $200 million. This follows a contract awarded in July worth almost a billion dollars for development effort for a new version of the missile.

Raytheon is building a new facility in Huntsville, AL to produce the SM-3 missiles.

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Raytheon awarded $636 million for Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle — Press Release

TUCSON, Ariz., July 9, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Raytheon Company (NYSE: RTN) was awarded a $636 million development and sustainment contract to provide the Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle to The Boeing Company, which is the prime contractor for the Ground-based Midcourse Defense program. Raytheon booked the award during its second quarter.

EKV represents the centerpiece for the Missile Defense Agency’s GMD as the intercept component of the Ground Based Interceptor, also known as GBI, which is designed to engage high-speed ballistic missile warheads in space.

“When it comes to developing, testing and deploying technologies that enable the intercept of threats in space, Raytheon is a world leader,” said Dr. Taylor W. Lawrence, Raytheon Missile Systems president. “We are proud to contribute to our nation’s first line of defense against the threat of ballistic missiles.”

Under conditions of the contract, which extends through November 2018, Raytheon will provide EKV development, fielding, testing, system engineering, integration, configuration management, equipment manufacturing and refurbishment, and operation and sustainment.

About the EKV
Leveraging more than two decades of kill vehicle technology expertise, the EKV is designed to destroy incoming ballistic missile threats by colliding with them, a concept often described as “hit to kill.”

EKV has an advanced multi-color sensor that is used to detect and discriminate incoming warheads from other objects.
The EKV also has its own propulsion, communications link, discrimination algorithms, guidance and control system and computers to support target selection and intercept.
EKV is deployed and operational today.
EKV has had eight successful intercepts throughout the life of the program.

About Raytheon
Raytheon Company, with 2011 sales of $25 billion and 71,000 employees worldwide, is a technology and innovation leader specializing in defense, homeland security and other government markets throughout the world. With a history of innovation spanning 90 years, Raytheon provides state-of-the-art electronics, mission systems integration and other capabilities in the areas of sensing; effects; and command, control, communications and intelligence systems, as well as a broad range of mission support services. Raytheon is headquartered in Waltham, Mass. For more about Raytheon, visit us at www.raytheon.com and follow us on Twitter at @raytheon.

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U.A.E. Considering Reducing THAAD Buy?

In the last year the Gulf State United Arab Emirates (U.A.E.) announced that it was making two major purchases of U.S. missile and air defense equipment. First it was placing a large order with Raytheon (RTN) for PATRIOT PAC-3 systems which provide local defense against enemy aircraft and ballistic missiles. Second that it would be the first overseas buyer of the longer ranged THAAD system manufactured by Lockheed Martin (LMT). The deal for the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) equipment was estimated at close to $7 billion.

Now there are reports that the U.A.E. is considering reducing its total investment in THAAD. No absolute figures have been given but it may be a substantial reduction in what is being purchased and spent by the U.A.E. government. A reduction in this contract will not only affect Lockheed’s bottom line but also the price the U.S. will pay for its equipment as the lack of this contract will reduce quantities and raise the price for the U.S. Army.

With the expected pressure on the U.S. defense budget to save costs and reduce investments overseas sales like this will become more important to U.S. defense contractors especially of existing systems like THAAD. A cut back in spending by the Gulf States which in the last ten years have heavily invested in new equipment across the spectrum may have a major effect on U.S. and European defense contractors.

No reason was given for the consideration of the cut to the purchase but it may be that the U.A.E. after refinement has found that less THAAD systems may provide the necessary performance then originally thought or it could just be good old budget cutting.

If this becomes a trend it will be a serious issue for the world’s defense industry and not just the American one.

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Missile Defense Agency Buys a Billion Dollars Worth of Interceptors

Even with the current budgetary situation in the United States where the Defense Department and the rest of the Federal government is operating without a budget and faces a possible shutdown in a week’s time the U.S. continues its operations in Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya as well as working on existing defense programs. Part of this is the Missile Defense Agency (MDA) keeping its different programs going with the announcement of two major contracts in the last few days.

First Raytheon (RTN) received an order for 24 STANDARD Missile-3 (SM-3) Block IB missiles for use on Navy cruisers and destroyers to intercept ballistic missiles. This contract is worth about $312 million. The SM-3 is an evolutionary design based on the SM-2 air defense missile in use by the United States and some Allies since the early Seventies. In the SM-3 configuration it carries an exo-atmospheric kinetic kill vehicle that will engage the target at high altitude. The MDA and Navy have been developing and testing the AEGIS weapon system based program since the mid-Nineties.

Raytheon is also investing several million dollars in a new facility at Redstone Arsenal, Huntsville, AL to manufacture the SM-3 and its replacement the SM-6. It is expected that ground breaking on the complex will happen fairly soon.

Lockheed Martin (LMT) who manufactures missiles for the Army’s PATRIOT PAC-3 and THAAD systems also received a production order. This was for 48 THAAD missiles, launchers and support equipment. That contract has a value of almost $800 million. The Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) is the longer ranged of the Army’s ground based programs. This contract represents a major expansion of the number of THAAD units for the Army. The United Arab Emirates (U.A.E.) has also looked at buying the THAAD system to provide protection for itself.

If you are doing the math that is over a billion dollars for 72 missiles and related support equipment and services. Missile defense is neither cheap nor easy and indicates the U.S. intent to continue development and deployment of their layered defensive system.

Photo from the U.S. Missile Defense Agency flickr photostream.

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Lockheed to Build Missiles for More THAAD Units

The United States has been working on developing a layered missile defense system now since the 1980’s. With the attacks by Iraq using SCUD shorter range missiles in Desert Storm there was identified a need for longer range, more capable systems then the modified PATRIOT anti-air system then primarily used to protect troops and forward installations. This led to the Army and Missile Defense Agency (MDA) to develop the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense(THAAD) system.

THAAD utilizes a much bigger radar and missile then PATRIOT and is optimized for engaging ballistic missiles at higher altitudes including exo-atmospheric conditions. Even though it remains a terminal defense system it has the ability to cover larger areas then the shorter ranged PATRIOT PAC-3.

The THAAD has had a long development period. In 1999 it entered the Engineering, Manufacturing and Development (EMD) stage of the acquisition process after seven years of basic work by a team led by Lockheed Martin (LMT). In 2005 the EMD missile conducted its first flight test and the system has been in production and deployment since 2008. Two batteries have been stood up so far and the United Arab Emirates (U.A.E.) has been the only foreign customer to express interest in the system.

The MDA is continuing production and deployment of the system and recently awarded Lockheed a contract to buy the missiles for the next two batteries. The almost $700 million contract will purchase 48 interceptors and their supporting equipment and services.

The contract illustrates that missile defense is not cheap but THAAD benefits from its longer range which means it may cover a larger area with less assets. The system will also be part of a defense that uses multiple assets that will engage the threat at different parts of its trajectory to increase the chance of a successful intercept.

Photo from the U.S. Missile Defense Agency’s flickr photostream.

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Raytheon Gets Two Significant Gulf State Contracts

The friendly states in the Persian Gulf have always been good customers of the United States. While they also due to their financial resources have purchased some items from the European defense industry due to ties with former colonial powers they have in recent times turned to the U.S. for their needs. This is especially true in the area of missile defense. Overseas sales have become more important as the expected downturn in U.S. domestic defense spending will require expansion in other areas to make up the revenue.

Raytheon (RTN) has been one of the biggest beneficiaries of this as they make the PATRIOT surface-to-air missile system that also engages ballistic missiles. They also make radars and other components of the larger THAAD system developed by the U.S. Army.

The U.A.E. and Kuwait have invested in PATRIOT and the U.A.E. has also been able to buy THAAD systems. The major concern of course at this time is Iran’s growing military power including short and medium ranged ballistic missiles with the potential for Weapon of Mass Destruction (WMD) warheads.

These nations have also been building up their conventional arms including new aircraft, ships and support equipment. American defense contractors have been able to get some of this business including Boeing (BA) and Lockheed Martin (LMT).

With this in mind Raytheon announced two large contracts this week to these customers.

Kuwait ordered $145 million of new GEM-T PATRIOT missiles to equip their launchers. They also recently received a $20 million technical support contract for the PATRIOT as well.

The Massachusetts based company also signed a contract with Saudi Arabia to provide Paveway guided bomb kits. This contract is worth almost $500 million. The kits add a sensor and guidance fins to a bomb to make it more precise as it homes in on a laser illuminating a target on the ground.

These contracts continue to illustrate the importance of this market to the U.S. defense industry. As long as these states feel threatened they will invest in weaponry. Their economies and political situation also means they will be willing to buy small quantities of advanced systems from across the Globe but with a large amount of sales going to America. Certainly the U.S. government is willing to support these sales and will help influence them if they are able.

Photo from Luhai Wong’s flickr photostream.

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U.S. Investment in Lasers Starting to Pay Off

The idea of laser weapons has been a fixture of science fiction novels and movies. The idea of an almost unlimited range and power weapon using light has caught the imagination of people for decades. Now different U.S. defense contractors working for a variety of customers are starting to see some accomplishments in this area.

Raytheon (RTN) has begun testing a point defense system for use on U.S. Navy ships that successfully engaged drones and destroyed them in an at-sea test. The electric powered system is mounted on a Phalanx weapon system that currently provides close in defense against missiles using a 20 mm gatling gun. There are reports that Raytheon will be using a similar system as part of a proposed defensive system for U.S. Army helicopters designed to protect against infra-red guided surface-to-air missiles.

Boeing (BA) has been developing a light weight laser system to defend against weapons such as the artillery, mortars and rockets. The High Energy Laser Technology Demonstrator (HEL TD) will be integrated onto an Army standard HEMTT transport vehicle. This truck made by Oshkosh (OSK) will have Boeing’s beam control system installed to support further testing in 2011.

One of the oldest laser “weapon” programs in development by the United States has been the Airborne Laser Testbed (ALTB). This mounts a high power chemical laser onto a modified Boeing 747. The system when it enters service will be used to engage theater ballistic missiles to provide missile defense. The overall program is supported by Lockheed Martin (LM) who make the Beam Control/Fire Control System. This provides fire control for the Northrop Grumman (NOC) produced laser that is used to destroy the target. The ABLT had success in tests earlier this year but the program has been scaled back significantly by the Obama Administration as part of their defense reforms.

These systems demonstrate that the focus of current U.S. research and development is on defensive systems to protect troops, ships and aircraft. The ALTB is also a defensive weapon but scaled up to destroy ballistic missiles. The footprint of the laser systems and their need for decent amounts of power and chemicals dictate that the vehicle and ship mounted systems be short ranged.

As more data and experience is gathered with these types of systems they can be increased in power and capability and ultimately perform more missions. The end game should be the development of some sort of offensive weapon that will replace artillery and potentially small arms and infantry support weapons. Then it will be like the laser guns of science fiction novels and movies.

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Two Northrop Grumman Laser Systems Help Airborne Laser Testbed Turn Science Fiction Into Fact

February 12, 2010 by · Comment
Filed under: Boeing, Syndicated Industry News 
Two Northrop Grumman Laser Systems Help Airborne Laser Testbed Turn Science Fiction Into Fact
February 12, 2010

REDONDO BEACH, Calif. – Feb.12, 2010 – The Airborne Laser Testbed (ALTB) transitioned from science fiction to directed energy fact Feb. 11 when it put a lethal amount of 'light on target' to destroy a boosting ballistic missile with help from a megawatt-class laser developed by Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC).

While ballistic missiles like the one ALTB destroyed move at speeds of about 4,000 miles per hour, they are no match for a super-heated, high-energy laser beam racing towards it at 670 million mph. The basketball-sized beam was focused on the foreign military asset, as the missile is called officially, for only a few seconds before a stress fracture developed, causing the target to catastrophically split into multiple pieces.

"This experiment shows the incredible potential for directed energy as a premier element in early or ascent phase missile defense,"
said Steve Hixson, vice president of Space and Directed Energy Systems for Northrop Grumman's Aerospace Systems sector. "The demonstration
leaves no doubt whatsoever about ALTB's unprecedented mobility, precision and lethality," he added. Hixson is a former ALTB program manager for the company.

Northrop Grumman executives said the high-energy Chemical Oxygen Iodine Laser the company provides – the most powerful laser ever
developed for an airborne environment – performed reliably once again with other critical capabilities onboard the U.S. Missile Defense
Agency's ALTB. This includes the low-power, solid-state Beacon Illuminator Laser for atmospheric compensation, a targeting laser Northrop Grumman also supplies for the ALTB system.

"The continued dependable and consistent performance of both laser systems is the result of our dedicated team and its unwavering commitment to develop game-changing technology for our military forces," said Guy Renard, Northrop Grumman's ALTB program manager. "The impressive progress made by the government and industry team during the last three-and-a-half years could not have culminated any more dramatically than this successful experiment."

The experiment, a proof-of-concept demonstration, was the first directed energy lethal intercept demonstration against a liquid-fuel
boosting ballistic missile target from an airborne platform.

Northrop Grumman is under contract to The Boeing Company, ALTB's prime contractor, for the two laser systems. The ALTB is a
modified Boeing 747-400F whose back half holds the high-energy laser. The front section of the aircraft contains the beam control/fire
control system, developed by Lockheed Martin, and the battle management system, provided by Boeing.

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U.A.E. PATRIOT Contract Spillover

It has been reported that as part of Raytheon’s contract to build PATRIOT air and missile defense systems for the United Arab Emirates (U.A.E.) a contract was awarded to Beckwood Services of New Hampshire. The manufacturer of sub-components for electrical mechanical systems will have to grow its work force to support this contract.

U.A.E. signed last year a big deal for PATRIOT and THAAD systems to provide defense of itself. The presumed threat is Iran which has been investing in short ranged ballistic missiles. U.A.E. has been investing billions on its military

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Brownback Lauds Successful Airborne Laser Test — Press Release

Brownback Lauds Successful Airborne Laser Test

Congratulates Missile Defense Agency, industry team on successful in-flight test of laser tracking system

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Sam Brownback today commented on successful tests of the Airborne Laser tracking system over the weekend. “The ABL continues to make history,” Brownback said. “Last Saturday, for the first time, a boosting missile was tracked by lasers able to compensate for atmospheric conditions and remain locked on target for an extended period of time.”

The Airborne Laser is a modified Boeing 747 that carries laser systems designed to track and destroy ballistic missiles during the early, or boost, stages of flight. The ABL consists of three lasers, a tracking laser, an environmental laser that compensates for atmospheric variables, and a weaponized laser, all working in conjunction to track and destroy missiles in their boost phase. The successful test was conducted this weekend while the plane was in flight and was able to continuously track a launched missile.

Brownback continued, “I want to congratulate the Missile Defense Agency and its industry partners on this test. Every day, their hard work brings us a step closer to having a boost phase defense against ballistic missile threats. Especially with North Korea’s recent provocative behavior, ABL’s progress is more important than ever.”

The Airborne Laser is scheduled to undergo a series of tests this summer, culminating in a full system test to shoot down a missile this fall.

STATEMENT: Michael Rinn, Boeing vice president and ABL program director:

This is the first time in history anyone has actively tracked a boosting missile with a laser while closing atmospheric compensation loops. This was done at significant ranges and for many times longer than would be required to kill the missile had the high-energy laser been used.

Additional missile engagements will fine-tune the pointing accuracy and performance of the system. This significant test is a major step toward conducting this year’s missile-intercept test, which will demonstrate the unprecedented speed, mobility, precision and lethality that ABL could provide to America’s warfighters.

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Boeing Airborne Laser Engineers Receive Missile Defense Agency Award – Press Release

WASHINGTON, April 29, 2009 — Three Boeing [NYSE: BA] Airborne Laser (ABL) engineers and three of their government and industry teammates received the Technology Pioneer Award from the U.S. Missile Defense Agency (MDA) on March 23 for advancing technologies that would enable ABL to intercept and destroy ballistic missile threats.

MDA presented the award at the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics/MDA 7th Annual Missile Defense Conference in Washington to honor the recipients’ work in developing critical technologies central to implementing high-power directed energy on ABL as a new class of powerful weaponry for the warfighter. Two critical ABL components are the high-energy laser to shoot down ballistic missiles soon after they are launched, and the beam control/fire control system that points the
laser beam while compensating for atmospheric turbulence. The laser, the beam control/fire control system and a state-of-the-art battle management suite are now integrated aboard the ABL aircraft, which underwent the largest modification to an airplane ever accomplished by Boeing. ABL is scheduled to perform a missile-intercept test this year.

“The six members of the joint government-industry team that received this prestigious award greatly deserve this recognition,” said Michael Rinn, Boeing vice president and ABL program director. “Thanks to their technical skill, teamwork and boundless dedication, we will soon be able to demonstrate the revolutionary speed, mobility, precision and lethality that the Airborne Laser could provide to America’s warfighters. ABL could change not only missile defense, but warfare in general, and these technology pioneers have blazed a path for other directed-energy weapons to follow.”

The honorees are:

* Don Clapp, ABL chief engineer and mission assurance manager, Boeing
* Jeff Hartlove, ABL deputy program manager, Northrop Grumman
* Steve Lamberson, ABL chief scientist, ABL System Program Office, MDA
* Dave Morris, ABL chief scientist and system performance manager, Boeing
* Harold Schall, ABL chief engineer for integration and testing, Boeing
* Paul Shattuck, ABL beam control/fire control chief engineer and technical director, Lockheed Martin.

Boeing is the prime contractor and overall systems integrator for ABL, which is designed to provide speed-of-light capability to destroy all classes of ballistic missiles in their boost phase of flight. ABL also has the potential to be deployed for other missions, including destroying aircraft and surface-to-air missiles.

The ABL aircraft is a modified Boeing 747-400F whose back half holds the high-energy laser, designed and built by Northrop Grumman. The front section of the aircraft contains the beam control/fire control system, developed by Lockheed Martin, and the battle management system, provided by Boeing.

A unit of The Boeing Company, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is one of the world’s largest space and defense businesses specializing in innovative and capabilities-driven customer solutions, and the world’s largest and most versatile manufacturer of military aircraft. Headquartered in St. Louis, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is a $32 billion business with 70,000 employees worldwide.

###
Contact Info:
Marc Selinger
Boeing Missile Defense Systems
(703) 414-6138
[email protected]

Chuck Cadena
Boeing Missile Defense Systems
(703) 872-4503
[email protected]

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Boeing Airborne Laser Team Begins Weapon System Flight Tests – Press Release

EDWARDS AIR FORCE BASE, Calif., April 24, 2009 — The Boeing Company [NYSE: BA], industry teammates and the U.S. Missile Defense Agency have begun Airborne Laser (ABL) flight tests with the entire weapon system integrated aboard the ABL aircraft.
ABL, a heavily modified Boeing 747-400F aircraft, completed its functional check flight April 21 from Edwards Air Force Base with the beam control/fire control system and the high-energy laser onboard, confirming the aircraft is airworthy, ready for more airborne tests, and on track for its missile-intercept demonstration this year. “With ABL’s return to flight, we are on the verge of fully demonstrating the unprecedented speed, mobility, precision and lethality that ABL could provide to America’s warfighters,” said
Michael Rinn, Boeing vice president and ABL program director. ABL would deter potential adversaries and provide speed-of-light capability to destroy all classes of ballistic missiles in their boost phase of flight. Eliminating missiles in their boost phase would
reduce the number of shots required by other elements of the layered ballistic missile defense system. ABL also has the potential to be employed for other missions, including destroying aircraft and surface-to-air missiles.

The program has logged many accomplishments over the past several years. In 2007, ABL completed almost 50 flight tests that demonstrated its ability to track an airborne target, measure and compensate for atmospheric conditions, and deliver a surrogate high-energy laser beam on the target. In 2008, the team completed installing the high-energy laser onboard the aircraft and, for the first time, operated the entire weapon system at high power levels. Boeing is the prime contractor and overall systems integrator for ABL, and provides the modified aircraft and battle management system.

Northrop Grumman supplies the high-energy laser, and Lockheed Martin provides the beam control/fire control system. A unit of The Boeing Company, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is one of the world’s largest space and defense businesses specializing in innovative and capabilities-driven customer solutions, and the world’s largest and most versatile manufacturer of
military aircraft. Headquartered in St. Louis, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is a $32 billion business with 70,000 employees
worldwide.

###

Contact Info:
Marc Selinger
Boeing Missile Defense Systems
(703) 414-6138
[email protected]
Chuck Cadena
Boeing Missile Defense Systems
(703) 872-4503
[email protected]

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U.S. Navy Awards AEGIS Upgrade Contract to Lockheed Martin

NJBIZ.com reports that the U.S. Navy gave Lockheed Martin a contract to upgrade the AEGIS Weapon System installed on destroyers and cruisers. The almost $80 million contract will improve the software as well as some of the control hardware. The AEGIS system is used with versions of the STANDARD Missile to counter ballistic missiles, aircraft and other threats to ships. It has been been used since the Seventies and has had consistent upgrades over the years. The contract will allow Lockheed Martin to upgrade several ships a year slowly re-equipping the whole fleet.

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