Press Release

THAAD Weapon System Successfully Intercepts Target in Second Pacific Range Test

By SpaceRef Editor
April 8, 2007
Filed under , ,

The U.S. Missile Defense Agency and Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] conducted another successful flight test of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) weapon system today, intercepting a unitary target in THAAD’s second flight test at the Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF) on Kauai, HI. This hit-to-kill intercept demonstrated THAAD’s precision against in-bound threats and its ability to provide increased protection for troops and assets.

Preliminary data indicates the flight test met all objectives. This included new goals which set this test apart from previous flight tests:

— The target was intercepted in the mid endo-atmosphere

— The THAAD Fire Control and Communications unit’s data link communicated with a simulated Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense ship via a satellite link with the Navy’s Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command, located in San Diego. This successful link highlights the interoperability of the various elements of the United States’ Ballistic Missile Defense System (BMDS)

— Proved THAAD’s endgame capability

— Examined hit assessments in radar data

     
 

Other objectives were met, including demonstrating the integration of the radar, launcher, fire control, communications and interceptor operations; interceptor seeker characterization (target identification); discrimination and intercept of a non-separating liquid-fueled target; and examining launch procedures and equipment.

“The system is proving its precision and lethal effect throughout our skies, considering THAAD’s successes in both the high- and now mid-atmospheric proving grounds,” said Tom McGrath, program manager and vice president – THAAD at Lockheed Martin. “By linking with another element of the BMDS during this flight test, our nation’s vision of a layered missile defense becomes one step closer to reality.”

The THAAD program began flight testing in November 2005 at White Sands Missile Range (WSMR), NM. Three successful THAAD tests were conducted at WSMR, including the intercept of a unitary target in July 2006. Earlier this year, the first flight test conducted at PMRF demonstrated THAAD’s ability to intercept a threat representative target in the high endo-atmosphere.

THAAD is designed to defend U.S. troops, allied forces, population centers and critical infrastructure against short- to intermediate range ballistic missiles. THAAD comprises a fire control and communications system, interceptors, launchers and a radar. The THAAD interceptor uses hit-to-kill technology to destroy targets, and is the only weapon system that engages threat ballistic missiles at both endo- and exo-atmospheric altitudes.

A key element of the nation’s Ballistic Missile Defense System (BMDS), THAAD is a Missile Defense Agency program, with the program office located in Huntsville, AL. The agency is developing a BMDS to defend the United States, its deployed forces, friends and allies against ballistic missiles of all ranges and in all phases of flight.

Lockheed Martin is a world leader in systems integration and the development of air and missile defense systems and technologies, including the first operational hit-to-kill missile. It also has considerable experience in missile design and production, infrared seekers, command and control/battle management, and communications, precision pointing and tracking optics, as well as radar and signal processing. The company makes significant contributions to all major U.S. missile defense systems and participates in several global missile defense partnerships.

Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin employs about 140,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture and integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services.

Video of this test will be uplinked on April 6th to satellite and will be available in three separate time windows from three different satellites. The times and coordinates are listed below.

    1. Time: 12 midnight to 1 a.m. Hawaii Standard Time (6 a.m. to 7 a.m.
       Eastern Daylight time)
       Satellite: G10R 123W transponder 6K
       Downlink Frequency 11, 814 MHz, Horizontal,
       symbol rate: 3.617 msps and a QPSK of 3/4

       Trouble number for feed #1:  Paul Gierow, (256) 509-9348

    2. Time:  1 a.m. to 1:30 a.m., HST (7 a.m. to 7:30 a.m. EDT)
       Satellite:
       IA-5 - C01  36 MHz
       Orb Loc: 97W;
       D/L: 3720Mhz Vertical;

       Trouble number for feed #2:  (404) 381-2600

    3. From DVIDS:
       Time:  2 a.m. to 3 a.m., HST (8 a.m. to 9 a.m. EDT)
       DVIDS Sideband 2
       DIGITAL
       Galaxy 11-C21
       D/L Frequency 4133 Horizontal
       L-Band 1017
       Symbol Rate 6.1113
       FEC 5/6
       Data Rate 9386637
       DVIDS 2 Service or Channel 2
       IFB Channel 1 - 678-245-7624
       Master Control 678-421-6604
       Note-streaming video of the footage as it is being downlinked will be
       available on the DVIDS web site at http://www.dvidshub.net

In addition to the video feeds listed above, video and still images of the test will be available at the following ftp site:

http://ftp.dynetics.com

Username: thaad07

Password: ftt07

For additional information, visit our Web site: http://www.lockheedmartin.com

SpaceRef staff editor.