Long range anti ship cruise missile to be designed by Lockheed Martin for DARPA

ARLINGTON, Va., 26 July 2009. Cruise missile designers at two divisions of Lockheed Martin Corp. (LMT) are designing the Long Range Anti-Ship Missile (LRASM) for the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) in Arlington, Va.

The LRASM and its missile guidance systems are under development at the Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control segment in Grand Prairie, Texas, as well as at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control in Orlando, Fla., under terms of two separate $10 million contracts.

The new anti-ship missile and its associated missile electronics will provide Navy warships like the guided missile cruiser with the ability to attack important enemy ships outside the ranges of the enemy's ability to respond with anti-ship missiles of its own.

the LRASM concept seeks to reduce dependence on precision intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance sources, data links, and GPS satellite navigation and guidance by demonstrating advanced onboard missile sensor and missile processing capabilities, which will enable precision engagement of moving ships based only on course and initial target cueing in extremely hostile environments.

The contracts are for the initial nine-month phase of the LRASM missile demonstration effort, which is under supervision of DARPA and the Office of Naval Research (ONR), also in Arlington, Va. The Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control Texas division won its contract July 20, while the Orlando division won its contract June 30.

LRASM will be compatible with the Navy Vertical Launch System and will have sufficient range to engage targets from well beyond direct counter-fire ranges of projected threats. The missile also will be able to penetrate advanced air defenses.

During the program's initial phase, contractors will conduct trade studies and system performance analysis, develop a preliminary design, and perform risk reduction testing of critical elements of their system. This phase will conclude with a preliminary design review, operational effectiveness assessment, and evaluation of the technology development plan to complete the remaining DARPA demonstration program and operational switch to the Navy.

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