Lockheed Martin Awarded $137 Million Trident SLBM Contract

Lockheed Martin Rotary and Mission Systems is awarded a $137 million contract award in support of the UGM-133A Trident II (D5) submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM).

The contract, for the U.S. and the United Kingdom, provides Strategic Weapon System Trident Fleet Support, Trident II Strategic Systems Programs, Shipboard Integration (SSI) Increment 8, SSI Increment 16, U.S. Columbia Class and U.K. Dreadnought Navigation Subsystem development efforts.

Work will be performed in Mitchel Field, New York (47%); Huntington Beach, California (36%); Clearwater, Florida (9%); Cambridge, Massachusetts (6%); and Hingham, Massachusetts (2%). Work is expected to be complete by November 2022.

The U.S. Navy’s Strategic Systems Programs (SSP) is the contracting activity (N-00030-20-C-0045).

UGM-133A Trident II SLBM

UGM-133A Trident II, or Trident D5, is a submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM), built by Lockheed Martin Space Systems in Sunnyvale, California, and deployed with the American and British navies.

The missile has a maximum operational range of over 7,500 miles (12,000 km) and a CEP of 90 meters (the exact values are classified). The missile’s MK 6 Astro-inertial guidance navigation system is also able to receive GPS (Global Positioning System) updates.

Trident II missiles are carried by 14 U.S. Navy Ohio-class and four UK Royal Navy Vanguard-class ballistic missile submarines (SSBNs), with 24 missiles on each Ohio class and 16 missiles on each Vanguard class. The missiles deployed on U.S. Navy submarines can be equipped with a Mark 5 MIRV warhead that can carry up to 8 W88 (475 kt) warheads, or a Mark 4 MIRV that can also carry 14 W76 (100 kt) warheads.

The D5 is the sixth in a series of missile generations deployed since the sea-based deterrent program began 60 years ago. The Trident D5LE (life-extension) version is expected to remain in service until 2042.

Columbia-class SSBN

Columbia-class submarine is a future U.S. Navy nuclear submarine class designed to replace the Trident missile-armed Ohio-class ballistic missile submarines.

General Dynamics Electric Boat (GDEB) is designing the Ohio replacement submarines with assistance from Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) Newport News Shipbuilding (NNS). The U.S. Navy plans to construct a total of 12 Columbia-class submarines.

The submarines will be 560 feet (170.7 m) long and 43 feet (13.1 m) in diameter. That is the same length as the Ohio-class submarine design, and one foot larger in diameter. The vessel has X-shaped stern control surfaces (hydroplanes), sail-mounted dive planes and integrated electric propulsion.

Each submarine will have 16 missile tubes and each tube will be capable of carrying one Trident II D5LE submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM). Ohio-class subs had 24 missile launch tubes.

The vessel’s nuclear fuel core is sufficient to power the ship for its entire expected service life, unlike the Ohio-class submarines, which require a mid-life nuclear refueling. The boats may also be equipped with a Submarine Warfare Federated Tactical System (SWFTS), a cluster of systems that integrate sonar, optical imaging, weapons control, etc.

The Columbia class was officially designated on December 14, 2016, by Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus, and the lead boat will be USS Columbia (SSBN-826).

The lead boat, Columbia is scheduled to begin construction in 2021 and enter service in 2031 (some 50 years after its immediate predecessor, the Ohio class, entered service). The submarine class will serve through 2085.

Dreadnought-class SSBN

Dreadnought class is the replacement for the Vanguard-class of ballistic missile submarines which entered service in the United Kingdom in the 1990s with an intended service life of 25 years.

Like their predecessors, the new submarines will also carry UGM-133A Trident II (D5) submarine-launched ballistic missiles (SLBM).

Once built, the submarines will measure 153.6m long, with a displacement of 17,200 tonnes. They are being delivered by the newly-formed Dreadnought Alliance, a joint management team established between the UK Ministry of Defence (MOD), BAE Systems and Rolls-Royce.

Provisionally named “Successor” (being the successor to the Vanguard-class SSBNs), it was officially announced in 2016 that the first of class would be named HMS Dreadnought and that the class would be the Dreadnought class. The next three boats will be called HMS ValiantHMS Warspite, and HMS King George VI.

Construction on HMS Dreadnought started in October 2016 at the Barrow-in-Furness shipyard operated by BAE Systems Maritime – Submarines. The submarine is expected to enter service in the late 2020s or early 2030s.

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