Lockheed Martin has been awarded a new $944 million contract for production and delivery of Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) and PAC-3 Missile Segment Enhancement (PAC-3 MSE) interceptors.
The contract includes interceptors and launcher modification kits for the U.S. Army, Romania and other Foreign Military Sales (FMS) customers. The new missiles will upgrade the missile defense capabilities of the United States and allied military forces.
“PAC-3 and PAC-3 MSE provide our customers and especially the deployed warfighter with unmatched terminal air- and missile-defense capabilities,” said Scott Arnold, vice president and deputy of Integrated Air and Missile Defense at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. “PAC-3 and PAC-3 MSE are trusted and reliable interceptors that employ advanced hit-to-kill technology, enabling better accuracy, enhanced safety and improved lethality when it matters most.”
The Patriot Advanced Capability-3 is a high-velocity interceptor that defends against incoming threats, including tactical ballistic missiles, cruise missiles and aircraft. The system currently provides missile defense capabilities for the U.S., Germany, Kuwait, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Taiwan, the Netherlands, the United Arab Emirates and others.
The PAC-3 Missile Segment upgrade consists of the PAC-3 missile, a very agile hit-to-kill interceptor, the missile canisters (in four packs), a fire solution computer, and an Enhanced Launcher Electronics System (ELES). The MSE interceptor increases altitude and range through a more powerful dual-pulse motor for added thrust, larger fins that collapse inside current launchers, and other structural modifications for more agility.
MIM-104 Patriot is a surface-to-air missile (SAM) system manufactured by Raytheon and derives its name from the radar component of the weapon system.
The AN/MPQ-53 at the heart of the system is known as the “Phased array Tracking Radar to Intercept on Target” which is a backronym for PATRIOT.
The Patriot System is the U.S. Army’s primary High to Medium and medium tactical Air Defense system. In addition to these roles, Patriot has been given the function of the U.S. Army’s anti-ballistic missile (ABM) system, which is now Patriot’s primary mission. The system is expected to stay fielded until at least 2040.
Patriot uses an advanced aerial interceptor missile and high-performance radar systems.
Patriot systems are currently deployed in Republic of China (Taiwan), Germany, Greece, Israel, Japan, Kuwait, the Netherlands, Poland, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Turkey, United Arab Emirates and Spain.
The Patriot system gained notoriety during the Persian Gulf War of 1991 with the claimed engagement of over 40 Iraqi Scud missiles.