DALLAS, 7 Jan. 2007.Lockheed Martin has been awarded a $619 million contract from the Missile Defense Agency (MDA) to begin production of the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) Weapon System.
The contract for the first two THAAD fire units includes 48 interceptors, six launchers, and two fire control and communications units. The system is scheduled for fielding in fiscal year 2009.
"Lockheed Martin, our customers at MDA, and the THAAD Project Office have been working together to ensure that warfighters receive a missile defense system they can count on to defend themselves and the assets they are protecting," says Tom McGrath, Lockheed Martin vice president and THAAD program manager. "Once fielded, THAAD will network with other systems and sensors to provide the layered missile defense capability required for the future."
Final assembly, integration, and testing of production equipment will take place at Lockheed Martin's manufacturing facilities in Troy, Ala., and Camden, Ark.
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, Ala.