Lockheed Martin to build HIMARS rocket launchers to help long-range smart munitions reach their targets

May 22, 2024
In addition to the Precision Strike Missile (PrSM), HIMARS also can fire the MLRS rocket and the MGM-140 Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) rocket.

REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala. – Tactical missile designers at Lockheed Martin Corp. will build rocket launchers for next-generation surface-to-surface munitions to attack enemy targets as far away as 300 miles under terms of a $861.3 million contract.

Officials of the Army Contracting Command at Redstone Arsenal, Ala., are asking the Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control segment in Grand Prairie, Texas, to build M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS).

These launchers will fire the Army's future long-range Precision Strike Missile (PrSM) -- a surface-to-surface, all weather, precision-strike guided missile fired from the M270A1 Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS) and the M142 HIMARS. The HIMARS launcher also can fire the MLRS rocket and the MGM-140 Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) rocket.

Related: Lockheed Martin to build artillery launchers for extended-range smart munitions in $476.8 million deal

The PrSM multimode seeker homes-in on an enemy target's radar or radio communications emissions to give the weapon passive stealth capability. It also uses an imaging infrared sensor for terminal guidance, and also takes guidance from Global Position System (GPS) and inertial measurement sensors.

The PrSM smart munitions are to replace non-insensitive and cluster munition versions of ATACMS. It will provide Army and U.S. Marine Corps field artillery units with long range and deep strike capability. The PrSM will destroy, neutralize, or suppress targets at ranges from 43 to 250 miles using indirect precision fires.

The baseline missile will be able to engage a wide variety of targets at ranges as long as 310 miles. It will emphasize imprecisely located area and point targets. Primary emphasis for follow-on upgrades will be on increased range, lethality, and ability to attack time-sensitive, moving, hardened, and fleeting targets.

Related: Lockheed Martin to upgrade Army's MLRS field artillery to fire a variety of modern long-range rockets

By 2025 the Army will be able to use the long-range PrSM to attack and destroy moving enemy ships operating offshore at ranges out to about 310 miles. While the weapon primarily has surface-to-surface applications for use against enemy air defenses, troop fortifications, and armored vehicle columns, the PrSM is being configured with an advanced targeting multi-mode seeker to include maritime strike.

The new targeting seeker has completed a captive carry test wherein it flew aboard an aircraft against representative targets in preparation for further testing and ultimate deployment.

On this contract Lockheed Martin will do the work at locations to be determined with each order, and should be finished by May 2026. For more information contact Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control online at www.lockheedmartin.com/en-us/products/himars.html, or the Army Contracting Command-Redstone at https://acc.army.mil/contractingcenters/acc-rsa/.

About the Author

John Keller | Editor-in-Chief

John Keller is the Editor-in-Chief, Military & Aerospace Electronics Magazine--provides extensive coverage and analysis of enabling electronics and optoelectronic technologies in military, space and commercial aviation applications. John has been a member of the Military & Aerospace Electronics staff since 1989 and chief editor since 1995.

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