Lockheed, ATK Test Goes Well For Submarine Launched Missile
Lockheed Martin Corp. [LMT] and Alliant Techsystems [ATK] completed the Submarine Launched Intermediate Range Ballistic Missile (SLIRBM) booster system demonstration for the Navy.
The system met all technical, cost and schedule objectives, demonstrating the availability of this near-term solution for prompt global strike, according to the companies.
Those two firms delivered the final missile system trade study to the Navy, completing the booster system demonstration contract, the first phase in a low-risk research and development path toward a deployable system.
Potential follow-on phases could include flight test demonstrations with launcher integration and underwater launch tests.
In the booster system demonstration, Lockheed Martin and ATK demonstrated cost-effective, reliable and producible solid-propellant rocket motor technologies for a proposed conventional missile that would travel at supersonic speed to reach intermediate-range targets within 15 minutes, the companies stated.
The proposed missile would be deployed on Ohio-class SSGN guided-missile submarines, offering the war fighter an extremely accurate, no-notice prompt global strike capability from an undetectable, highly mobile platform that is on station around the clock.
The trade study incorporated the results of motor tests. Two static test firings of the prototype two-stage propulsion system were conducted at an ATK facility in Promontory, Utah. In July, the team test fired a modified first-stage ATK Orion 32-7 motor for 50 seconds at maximum thrust. In August, the team test fired a modified second-stage ATK Orion 32-4 motor for 40 seconds at maximum thrust.
Both tests demonstrated integrated operation of the motors with an electromechanical thrust vector control system that steers the motor’s nozzle by responding to commands issued by an avionics system.
ATK integrated the thrust vector control system, which was supplied by Moog Inc. to ATK, and, Lockheed Martin developed the avionics system.
The Navy Strategic Systems Programs Organization awarded the 16-month, $9.2 million contract in 2005. Lockheed Martin, the prime contractor, systems integrator and missile system trade study lead, performed program management and engineering at its Sunnyvale, Calif., facility. ATK, Lockheed Martin’s partner and subcontractor, developed the rocket motor technology, including the booster motor and nozzle.