Lockheed Martin Awarded $6 Billion PAC-3 Missile Contract

Lockheed Martin received a $6.07 billion contract from the U.S. Army for the production of Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) Missile Segment Enhancement (MSE) interceptors.

According to the Pentagon announcement, the contract is for incidental services, hardware, facilities, equipment and all technical, planning, management, manufacturing and testing efforts to produce Phased Array Tracking Radar to Intercept on Target (PATRIOT) Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) missiles in MSE configuration and associated ground support equipment and spares.

“This contract demonstrates our customer’s continued confidence in our ability to deliver unmatched Hit-to-Kill technology that defeats the ever-expanding global threats of today and tomorrow,” said Scott Arnold, vice president, Integrated Air & Missile Defense at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. “PAC-3 MSE is one of the most capable multi-mission interceptors, enabling our customers to defend against advanced tactical ballistic missiles, cruise missiles and aircraft.”

Fiscal 2020 missile procurement (Army) funds for the contract amount were obligated at the time of the award. The U.S. Army Contracting Command (ACC) at Redstone Arsenal, Alabama, is the contracting activity (W31P4Q-20-C-0023).

The contract work will be performed in Huntsville, Alabama; Camden, Arkansas; Ocala, Florida; Chelmsford, Massachusetts; Grand Prairie and Lufkin, Texas; and Archbald, Pennsylvania, with an estimated completion date of June 30, 2027.

The family of Lockheed Martin PAC-3 missiles are high-velocity interceptors that defend against incoming threats, including tactical ballistic missiles (TBM), cruise missiles and aircraft. The missile defeats incoming targets by direct, body-to-body impact.

Lockheed Martin PAC-3 Missile Segment Enhancement (MSE) interceptor
A PAC-3 Missile Segment Enhancement (MSE) interceptor missile. (Photo Credit: Lockheed Martin)

The PAC-3 Missile uses a solid propellant rocket motor, aerodynamic controls, attitude control motors (ACMs) and inertial guidance to navigate. The missile flies to an intercept point specified prior to launch by its ground-based fire solution computer, which is embedded in the engagement control station. Target trajectory data can be updated during missile flyout by means of a radio frequency uplink/downlink.

Shortly before arrival at the intercept point, the PAC-3 Missile’s on board Ka band seeker acquires the target, selects the optimal aim point and terminal guidance is initiated. The ACMs, which are small, short duration solid propellant rocket motors located in the missile forebody, fire explosively to refine the missile’s course to assure body-to-body impact.

PAC-3 Missiles, when deployed in a Patriot battery, significantly increase the Patriot system’s firepower, since 16 PAC-3s load-out on a Patriot launcher, compared with four Patriot PAC-2 missiles.

Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control is the prime contractor on the PAC-3 Missile Segment upgrade to the Patriot air defense system. The PAC-3 Missile Segment upgrade consists of the PAC-3 Missile, a highly agile hit-to-kill interceptor, the PAC-3 Missile canisters (in four packs), a fire solution computer and an Enhanced Launcher Electronics System (ELES). These elements are integrated into the Patriot system, a high to medium-altitude, long-range air defense missile system providing air defense of ground combat forces and high-value assets.

Fourteen nations – the U.S., Germany, Kuwait, Japan, Qatar, the Republic of Korea, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Taiwan, the Netherlands, United Arab Emirates, Romania, Poland, Sweden and Bahrain have chosen PAC-3 and PAC-3 MSE to provide missile defense capabilities.

To meet customer demand and increase production capacity, Lockheed Martin is currently building an 85,000-square-foot expansion at the Camden, Arkansas, facility where PAC-3 MSE interceptors are assembled. The building is expected to be complete by the fourth quarter of 2021, with operations beginning in the first quarter of 2022.

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