Latest News

SLIRBM Motor Tests Well: Lockheed

By | August 14, 2006

      An Alliant Techsystems [ATK] missile motor test-fired successfully, Lockheed Martin Corp. [LMT] announced.

      The test involved fired a second-stage booster motor under the Submarine Launched Intermediate Range Ballistic Missile (SLIRBM) Booster System for the Navy, according to Lockheed.

      This is the second static test firing conducted this summer under the demonstration, Lockheed stated.

      The modified second-stage ATK Orion 32-4 booster motor was fired for 40 seconds at maximum thrust at an ATK test facility in Promontory, Utah.

      The Orion 32-4 motor used high-performance solid rocket fuel.

      In a similar test last month, the team successfully test fired a modified ATK Orion 32-7, the first stage for the prototype two-stage propulsion system. Both tests demonstrated the integrated operation of the motor with an electro-mechanical thrust vector control system that steers the motor’s nozzle by responding to flight control and steering commands issued by an avionics system.

      Moog Inc. developed the thrust vector control system, which was integrated by ATK, while Lockheed developed the avionics

      The SLIRBM is to include a cost-effective, reliable and producible solid-propellant rocket motor for a proposed conventional missile.

      The demonstration is the first phase in a low-risk development path for a proposed new missile that would travel at supersonic speed to reach intermediate-range targets within 15 minutes.

      The proposed missile would be deployed on the Ohio-class SSGN guided-missile submarines, converted to employ conventional-warhead missiles in place of ICBMs tipped with nuclear weapons.

      An SSGN-based SLIRBM would offer the war fighter an extremely accurate, no-notice prompt global strike capability from an undetectable, highly mobile platform that is on station 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, according to Lockheed.

      Both manufacturing and the test were ahead of schedule and on budget, according to Michele Smith, Lockheed program manager for the SLIRBM demonstration. “Next, we will complete a missile system trade study,” she said.

      ATK designed, developed and tested the first- and second-stage motors in just 13 months, Charlie Precourt, ATK vice president of advanced strategic programs, said.

      In the SLIRBM Booster System Demonstration, Lockheed Martin and ATK are demonstrating 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, performs program management and engineering at its Sunnyvale, Calif., facility.

      ATK, the subcontractor, is developing the rocket motor technology, including the booster motor and nozzle.

      Leave a Reply