Five Lockheed Martin-built air defense missile systems have worked to neutralize tactical ballistic missile targets during a recent U.S. Army-led flight test at White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico.
Lockheed said Tuesday the intercept test involved one Patriot Advanced Capability-3 Missile Segment Enhancement and four PAC-3 Cost Reduction Initiative interceptors.
Results of the flight test meet a requirement that will open the door to a full-rate production decision for the MSE variant, the company added.
The Army facilitated the test to demonstrate the missile’s hit-to-kill function and determine its capacity to detect, tract and intercept incoming missiles.
“We expect PAC-3 interceptors to continue serving as an essential element in an integrated, layered defense system,” said Scott Arnold, vice president and deputy of integrated air and missile defense at Lockheed’s missiles and fire control business.
Lockheed designed the interceptors to subdue threats through the hit-to-kill technology’s body-to-body contact.
PAC-3 MSE is built upon the PAC-3 CRI system and equipped with large control fins and a dual-pulse solid rocket motor intended to extend missile reach and increase performance against evolving threats.