Tag Archives: Lockheed Martin

Reconfigurable ship

The Navy commissioned its newest Freedom-variant Littoral Combat Ship (LCS), the future USS Little Rock (LCS-9), during an 11 a.m. EST ceremony Saturday, December 16, at the Canalside waterfront in Buffalo, New York.

The future USS Little Rock (LCS-9) underway during a high-speed run in Lake Michigan during Acceptance Trials. Lockheed Martin and Fincantieri Marinette Marine successfully completed acceptance trials on the future USS Little Rock (LCS-9), August 25 (Photo by Lockheed Martin)
The future USS Little Rock (LCS-9) underway during a high-speed run in Lake Michigan during Acceptance Trials. Lockheed Martin and Fincantieri Marinette Marine successfully completed acceptance trials on the future USS Little Rock (LCS-9), August 25 (Photo by Lockheed Martin)

The future USS Little Rock, designated LCS-9, is the 10th littoral combat ship to enter the fleet and the fifth of the Freedom-variant design. It is the second warship named for the Arkansas state capital and will be commissioned alongside the first USS Little Rock (CL-92), which serves as a museum at the Buffalo and Erie County Naval and Military Park.

Arkansas Senator John Boozman delivered the ceremony’s principal address. Mrs. Janee L. Bonner, spouse of the Honorable Josiah «Jo» Bonner, a former U.S. representative from Alabama, is serving as the ship’s sponsor. In a time-honored Navy tradition, she gave the order to «man our ship and bring her to life»!

«The future USS Little Rock represents much more than the state capital of Arkansas, it represents service», said Secretary of the Navy Richard V. Spencer. «This ship would not exist without the dedicated service of the men and women of Marinette Marine, who can be proud of the accomplishment of putting another warship to sea. Once commissioned, this ship will provide presence around the globe for decades to come».

LCS is a modular, reconfigurable ship, designed to meet validated fleet requirements for Surface Warfare (SUW), Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) and Mine CounterMeasures (MCM) missions in the littoral region. An interchangeable mission package is embarked on each LCS and provides the primary mission systems in one of these warfare areas. Using an open architecture design, modular weapons, sensor systems and a variety of manned and unmanned vehicles to gain, sustain and exploit littoral maritime supremacy, LCS provides U.S. joint force access to critical areas in multiple theaters.

The LCS-class consists of the Freedom variant and Independence variant, designed and built by two industry teams. The Freedom variant team is led by Lockheed Martin (for the odd-numbered ships, e.g. LCS-1). The Independence variant team is led by Austal USA (for LCS-6 and follow-on even-numbered ships). Twenty-nine LCS ships have been awarded to date: 11 have been delivered to the U.S. Navy, five are in various stages of construction and three are in pre-production states.

 

Ship Design Specifications

Hull Advanced semiplaning steel monohull
Length Overall 389 feet/118.6 m
Beam Overall 57 feet/17.5 m
Draft 13.5 feet/4.1 m
Full Load Displacement Approximately 3,200 metric tons
Top Speed Greater than 40 knots/46 mph/74 km/h
Range at top speed 1,000 NM/1,151 miles/1,852 km
Range at cruise speed 4,000 NM/4,603 miles/7,408 km
Watercraft Launch and Recovery Up to Sea State 4
Aircraft Launch and Recovery Up to Sea State 5
Propulsion Combined diesel and gas turbine with steerable water jet propulsion
Power 85 MW/113,600 horsepower
Hangar Space Two MH-60 Romeo Helicopters
One MH-60 Romeo Helicopter and three Vertical Take-off and Land Tactical Unmanned Air Vehicles (VTUAVs)
Core Crew Less than 50
Accommodations for 75 sailors provide higher sailor quality of life than current fleet
Integrated Bridge System Fully digital nautical charts are interfaced to ship sensors to support safe ship operation
Core Self-Defense Suite Includes 3D air search radar
Electro-Optical/Infrared (EO/IR) gunfire control system
Rolling-Airframe Missile Launching System
57-mm Main Gun
Mine, Torpedo Detection
Decoy Launching System

 

Freedom-class

Ship Laid down Launched Commissioned Homeport
USS Freedom (LCS-1) 06-02-2005 09-23-2006 11-08-2008 San Diego, California
USS Fort Worth (LCS-3) 07-11-2009 12-07-2010 09-22-2012 San Diego, California
USS Milwaukee (LCS-5) 10-27-2011 12-18-2013 11-21-2015 San Diego, California
USS Detroit (LCS-7) 08-11-2012 10-18-2014 10-22-2016 San Diego, California
USS Little Rock (LCS-9) 06-27-2013 07-18-2015 12-16-2017 San Diego, California
USS Sioux City (LCS-11) 02-19-2014 01-30-2016
USS Wichita (LCS-13) 02-09-2015 09-17-2016
USS Billings (LCS-15) 11-02-2015 07-01-2017
USS Indianapolis (LCS-17) 07-18-2016
USS St. Louis (LCS-19) 05-17-2017
USS Minneapolis/St. Paul (LCS-21)
USS Cooperstown (LCS-23)
USS Marinette LCS-25

 

A New Era

December 6, 2017, the F-35A Lightning II «Adir» aircraft were qualified for operational use after a year-long training period.

A New Era in the Israeli Air Force
A New Era in the Israeli Air Force

The process began in December 2016 when the first aircraft arrived and the «Golden Eagle» (140) Squadron was created. Specially trained dedicated crews, who received nine aircraft over the past year operated the F-35A Lightning II «Adir» aircraft throughout the trial period.

The Israeli Air Force (IAF) is the only air force, other than the United States Armed Forces (USAF), that operates the F-35A Lightning II «Adir». This is another example of the cooperation and the special strategic relationship between the State of Israel and the United States.

The F-35A Lightning II «Adir» enhances the Israel Defense Forces (IDF’s) strategic and operational capabilities, and improves the IDF’s readiness in several scenarios and its ability to combat a wide range of threats in all arenas, as stipulated in the IDF’s multi-year «Gideon» plan.

In a letter from the Commander of the IAF, Major General Amikam Norkin, to the men and women of the IAF he wrote: «The announcement of the operationalization of the «Adir» aircraft comes at a time in which the IAF is operating on a large scale on a number of fronts in a dynamic Middle East. The constantly evolving and complex challenges are met with a high-quality and professional aerial response. The operationalization of the «Adir» aircraft adds another level to the IAF’s capabilities at this time».

Having built up an F-35 squadron with nine aircraft it has received since the first one was delivered in December 2016, the Israeli Air Force announced that the aircraft had reached Initial Operational Capability (IAF file photo)
Having built up an F-35 squadron with nine aircraft it has received since the first one was delivered in December 2016, the Israeli Air Force announced that the aircraft had reached Initial Operational Capability (IAF file photo)

 

Specifications

Length 51.4 feet/15.7 m
Height 14.4 feet/4.38 m
Wingspan 35 feet/10.7 m
Wing area 460 feet2/42.7 m2
Horizontal tail span 22.5 feet/6.86 m
Weight empty 29,300 lbs/13,290 kg
Internal fuel capacity 18,250 lbs/8,278 kg
Weapons payload 18,000 lbs/8,160 kg
Maximum weight 70,000 lbs class/31,751 kg
Standard internal weapons load Two AIM-120C air-to-air missiles
Two 2,000-pound/907 kg GBU-31 JDAM (Joint Direct Attack Munition) guided bombs
Propulsion (uninstalled thrust ratings) F135-PW-100
Maximum Power (with afterburner) 43,000 lbs/191,3 kN/19,507 kgf
Military Power (without afterburner) 28,000 lbs/128,1 kN/13,063 kgf
Engine Length 220 in/5.59 m
Engine Inlet Diameter 46 in/1.17 m
Engine Maximum Diameter 51 in/1.30 m
Bypass Ratio 0.57
Overall Pressure Ratio 28
Speed (full internal weapons load) Mach 1.6 (~1,043 knots/1,200 mph/1,931 km/h)
Combat radius (internal fuel) >590 NM/679 miles/1,093 km
Range (internal fuel) >1,200 NM/1,367 miles/2,200 km
Maximum g-rating 9.0
The Israeli Air Force (IAF) is the only air force, other than the United States Armed Forces (USAF), that operates the F-35A Lightning II «Adir»
The Israeli Air Force (IAF) is the only air force, other than the United States Armed Forces (USAF), that operates the F-35A Lightning II «Adir»

Third GPS III Satellite

The U.S. Air Force’s third GPS III satellite in production flow at Lockheed Martin’s advanced satellite manufacturing facility here is now fully integrated into a complete space vehicle.

The U.S. Air Force’s third GPS III satellite, GPS III SV03, is now fully integrated and ready to begin environmental tests. Lockheed Martin is in full production on ten contracted GPS III satellites at its GPS III Processing Facility near Denver
The U.S. Air Force’s third GPS III satellite, GPS III SV03, is now fully integrated and ready to begin environmental tests. Lockheed Martin is in full production on ten contracted GPS III satellites at its GPS III Processing Facility near Denver

GPS III Space Vehicle 03 (GPS III SV03) followed the first two GPS III satellites on a streamlined assembly and test production line. Technicians successfully integrated the satellite’s major components – its system module, navigation payload and propulsion core – into one fully-assembled space vehicle on August 14.

GPS III SV03 was assembled in Lockheed Martin’s GPS III Processing Facility, a $128 million, cleanroom factory designed in a virtual reality environment to drive efficiency and reduce costs in satellite production. Now fully assembled, the third satellite is being prepared to begin environmental testing.

GPS III SV03 closely follows the company’s second satellite in production flow. GPS III SV02 completed integration in May, finished acoustic testing in July and moved into thermal vacuum testing in August. The second GPS III satellite is expected to be delivered to the U.S. Air Force in 2018.

The fourth GPS III satellite is close behind the third. Lockheed Martin received the navigation payload for GPS III SV04 in October and the payload is now integrated with the space vehicle. The satellite is expected to be integrated into a complete space vehicle in January 2018.

In August, Lockheed Martin technicians began major assembly work on GPS III SV05.

All of these satellites are following Lockheed Martin’s first GPS III satellite, GPS III SV01, through production flow. In September, the Air Force accepted and declared GPS III SV01 «Available For Launch», with launch expected in 2018.

«GPS III is the most powerful and complex GPS satellite ever designed and built, and it’s now into a smooth production flow. The real credit goes to the Air Force for all the Back to Basics work done in advance, reducing program risk for all the GPS III satellites going forward», said Mark Stewart, Lockheed Martin’s vice president for Navigation Systems. «We are looking forward to bringing GPS III’s advanced capabilities to our warfighters in 2018».

Lockheed Martin is under contract for ten next generation GPS III satellites as part of the Air Force’s modernized Global Positioning System. GPS III will have three times better accuracy and up to eight times improved anti-jamming capabilities. Spacecraft life will extend to 15 years, 25 percent longer than the newest GPS satellites on-orbit today. GPS III’s new L1C civil signal also will make it the first GPS satellite to be interoperable with other international global navigation satellite systems.

Lockheed Martin’s unique GPS III satellite design includes a flexible, modular architecture that allows for the insertion of new technology as it becomes available in the future or if the Air Force’s mission needs change. Satellites based off this design are already proven compatible with both the Air Force’s next generation Operational Control System (OCX) and the existing GPS constellation.

The GPS III team is led by the Global Positioning Systems Directorate at the U.S. Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center. Air Force Space Command’s 2nd Space Operations Squadron (2SOPS), based at Schriever Air Force Base, Colorado, manages and operates the GPS constellation for both civil and military users.

S-Band radar

Lockheed Martin completed a rigorous Critical Design Review (CDR) on September 28 with the Missile Defense Agency (MDA) for the Long Range Discrimination Radar (LRDR), demonstrating compliance to all technical performance measures and requirements. The radar system will support a layered ballistic missile defense strategy to protect the U.S. homeland from ballistic missile attacks.

Lockheed Martin’s new SSRIS in Moorestown, New Jersey, provides significant risk reduction for the development of the Long Range Discrimination Radar (LRDR) and future solid state radar systems. Lockheed Martin made the investment to build the new test site (Photo courtesy Lockheed Martin)
Lockheed Martin’s new SSRIS in Moorestown, New Jersey, provides significant risk reduction for the development of the Long Range Discrimination Radar (LRDR) and future solid state radar systems. Lockheed Martin made the investment to build the new test site (Photo courtesy Lockheed Martin)

The MDA awarded the $784 million contract to Lockheed Martin in 2015 to develop, build and test LRDR, and the company is on track on an aggressive schedule to deliver the radar to Clear, Alaska in 2020. Teams from Lockheed Martin, MDA Sensors Directorate and the Command and Control, Battle Management, and Communications or C2BMC have worked interfaces closely to ensure seamless integration.

Successfully executing CDR validates that the LRDR system is ready to proceed into fabrication, demonstration, and test and that the hardware and software component have achieved Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 7 and Manufacturing Readiness Level 7.

With the completion of CDR, the program now begins the start of low rate manufacturing which began in October. In preparation for full rate manufacturing starting in mid-2018, Lockheed Martin will be utilizing production hardware in combination with prototype systems, tactical back-end processing equipment as well as tactical software to demonstrate system performance in an operational environment to achieve system TRL 7. Lockheed Martin will be performing a series of tests in the Solid State Radar Integration Site (SSRIS) including a closed loop satellite track test.

«We remain committed to support the MDA’s Ballistic Missile Defense and Homeland Defense Missions», said Chandra Marshall, LRDR program director, Lockheed Martin. «I am extremely proud of the team for their dedication and commitment to the successful execution of the LRDR program.  This team has achieved every milestone, including this CDR, on schedule since contract award in 2015».

Marshall continued, «I am extremely pleased with the progress the entire LRDR team has made in the two years since contract award. With the success of CDR, LRDR is on track for Initial Operating Capability or IOC in 2020».

In addition to CDR, Lockheed Martin conducted a Facilities Design Review in October for the LRDR equipment shelter design. Lockheed Martin will run a full and open competition for the construction of the equipment shelter in Clear, Alaska and will begin construction of the shelter in the first half of 2019. The MDA team is preparing the site for Radar System Installation and checkout mobilization, constructing the Mission Control Facility and starting the foundation for the LRDR equipment shelter.

Similar to Lockheed Martin’s Space Fence radar system, LRDR is a high-powered S-Band radar incorporating solid-state Gallium Nitride (GaN) components. LRDR adds the capability of discriminating threats at extreme distances using the inherent wideband capability of the hardware coupled with advanced software algorithms.

LRDR is a strategic national asset of the MDA’s Ballistic Missile Defense System and will provide 24/7/365 acquisition, tracking and discrimination data to enable defense systems to lock on and engage ballistic missile threats, a capability that stems from Lockheed Martin’s decades of experience in creating ballistic missile defense systems for the U.S. and allied governments.

Lockheed Martin is well positioned to provide low risk, scalable radar solutions that address critical homeland defense needs; providing a persistent capability to keep pace with evolving threats, delivering unmatched discrimination capability in the Pacific architecture, and increasing the defensive capability of Ground Based Interceptors.

Work on LRDR is primarily performed in New Jersey, Alaska, Alabama, Florida and New York.

As a proven world leader in systems integration and development of air and missile defense systems and technologies, Lockheed Martin delivers high-quality missile defense solutions that protect citizens, critical assets and deployed forces from current and future threats. The company’s experience spans radar and signal processing, missile design and production, hit-to-kill capabilities, infrared seekers, command and control/battle management, and communications, precision pointing and tracking optics, as well as threat-representative targets for missile defense tests.

The Long Range Discrimination Radar (LRDR) is a high-powered S-Band radar incorporating solid-state Gallium Nitride (GaN) components capable of discriminating threats at extreme distances. LRDR is a strategic national asset of the Missile Defense Agency’s Ballistic Missile Defense System (BMDS) and will provide 24/7/365 acquisition, tracking and discrimination data to enable separate defense systems to lock on and engage ballistic missile threats (Image courtesy Lockheed Martin)
The Long Range Discrimination Radar (LRDR) is a high-powered S-Band radar incorporating solid-state Gallium Nitride (GaN) components capable of discriminating threats at extreme distances. LRDR is a strategic national asset of the Missile Defense Agency’s Ballistic Missile Defense System (BMDS) and will provide 24/7/365 acquisition, tracking and discrimination data to enable separate defense systems to lock on and engage ballistic missile threats (Image courtesy Lockheed Martin)

Demo Flight

Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) and Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin company, hosted a ‘first of its kind’ orientation flight in the CH-53K King Stallion for Brigadier General Nir Nin-Nun, Israeli Air Force, Commander, Air Support and Helicopter Division, during a test flight November 7.

Israeli General Given Demo Flight on CH-53K Helicopter
Israeli General Given Demo Flight on CH-53K Helicopter

The 90-minute orientation flight included various operational maneuvers, landings and takeoffs, providing Nin-Nun a firsthand look at the unique and capabilities of the CH-53K King Stallion available through full authority fly-by-wire flight controls.

«This is the first time we have flown an international ally in the CH-53K», said U.S. Marine Corps Colonel Hank Vanderborght, program manager for the H-53 Heavy Lift Helicopters program office, PMA-261. «Flights like this give us an opportunity to strengthen relationships with our allies while sharing a taste of America’s next generation heavy lift helicopter».

The flight was arranged based on a government-to-government request from Brig. Gen. Nin-Nun and made possible through a contract modification between Sikorsky and NAVAIR.

«It was a great honor being hosted by the Marines and having a chance to fly on two outstanding platforms as we ramp up to decide on our future heavy lift», said Nin-Nun.

The orientation flight was conducted during an already planned test flight and piloted by Stephen McCulley, Sikorsky chief experimental test pilot. Prior to the flight, Brigadier General Nin-Nun completed a familiarization flight in the simulator and safety brief prior to take-off.

The two-day visit also included simulator flights, relevant program briefs, and a tour of the NAVAIR Internal Cargo Lab.

Currently, there are four Engineering Development and Manufacturing Model aircraft in test and one Ground Test Vehicle, which have logged more than 606 cumulative flight hours. Initial operational capability remains on pace for 2019 and is defined as having four aircraft, with combat-ready crews logistically prepared to deploy. The DOD’s program of record remains at 200 aircraft.

PMA-261 continually works with international partners through the Foreign Military Sales (FMS) program to potentially meet the international partners’ heavy lift helicopter requirements. FMS aircraft increase the total aircraft procured above the program of record and will decrease the unit cost for all users.

With more than triple the payload capability and a 12-inch/30.5-cm wider internal cabin than its predecessor (CH-53E Super Stallion), the CH-53K’s payload capability can take the form of a variety of relevant payloads ranging from an internally loaded High Mobility, Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle or the European Fennek armored personnel carrier. In addition, it can handle up to three independent external loads at once, which gives mission flexibility and system efficiency.

 

General Characteristics

Number of Engines 3
Engine Type T408-GE-400
T408 Engine 7,500 shp/5,595 kw
Maximum Gross Weight (Internal Load) 74,000 lbs/33,566 kg
Maximum Gross Weight (External Load) 88,000 lbs/39,916 kg
Cruise Speed 141 knots/162 mph/261 km/h
Range 460 NM/530 miles/852 km
AEO* Service Ceiling 14,380 feet/4,383 m
HIGE** Ceiling (MAGW) 13,630 feet/4,155 m
HOGE*** Ceiling (MAGW) 10,080 feet/3,073 m
Cabin Length 30 feet/9.1 m
Cabin Width 9 feet/2.7 m
Cabin Height 6.5 feet/2.0 m
Cabin Area 264.47 feet2/24.57 m2
Cabin Volume 1,735.36 feet3/49.14 m3

* All Engines Operating

** Hover Ceiling In Ground Effect

*** Hover Ceiling Out of Ground Effect

New Engine for Fury

Fury, the expeditionary, runway-independent Unmanned Air Vehicle (UAV) now has engine updates that will further increase its flight endurance, Lockheed Martin announced on November 15, 2017.

Engineering tests performed by Lockheed Martin indicate that Fury will be able to stay in the air for 15 continuous hours, making it one of the highest endurance unmanned systems in its class
Engineering tests performed by Lockheed Martin indicate that Fury will be able to stay in the air for 15 continuous hours, making it one of the highest endurance unmanned systems in its class

With the integration of the 1803 engine into the platform, engineering tests performed by the company indicate that Fury will be able to stay in the air for 15 continuous hours, making it one of the highest endurance unmanned systems in its class.

«We’ve engineered Fury to bring the flight endurance and other advantages of much larger unmanned aircraft into a compact, effective, category three system», said Kevin Westfall, director of Unmanned Systems at Lockheed Martin. «Lockheed Martin has invested heavily to mature the incredible capabilities Fury can deliver, and we’re excited to bring this system to customers around the world».

Fury is a long-endurance, expeditionary aircraft that leverages its advanced fuel propulsion system, power generation and low signature design to deliver capabilities to Class 3 UAV that were previously only available in larger and more complex systems. It has no landing gear, making it the most advanced truly runway-independent UAV in its class on the market today. The complete Fury launch and recovery element can be set up on unimproved ground, in areas a small as 200 feet/18.58 meters square.

Leveraging open architecture design, Fury is both adaptable and reconfigurable to serve a multitude of military missions – including intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance, and cyber-electronic warfare.

 

FEATURES

  • Runway independent – catapult launch and expeditionary recovery system
  • Blended 17-foot/5.18-meter wingspan for minimal visual signature
  • Endurance proven above 15 hours
  • Altitude up to 15,000 feet/4,572 meters
  • Engine successfully tested to FAR33.49 Accelerated Life Testing standard
  • Tested with Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (C4ISR) and Electronic Warfare (EW) payloads
  • Can carry a combination of over 200 lbs/90.72 kg of payload and fuel
  • Open, IP Based Architecture
  • Adaptable and reconfigurable

 

«Adir» Fighters

On November 08, 2017 (Wednesday), two additional «Adir» (F-35I Lightning II) stealth fighters landed in Nevatim Air Force Base (AFB). The jets will join the seven fighters that landed in Israel over the past year and will soon undergo a fitness inspection.

The latest addition to the 140th Squadron (Photography: Israel Defense Forces Spokesperson Unit)
The latest addition to the 140th Squadron (Photography: Israel Defense Forces Spokesperson Unit)

The new aircraft were escorted by a pair of «Adir» (F-35I Lightning II) jets that have already been integrated in Israel.

The two aircraft will join the seven fighters that landed in Israel over the past year and are the latest addition to the 140th Squadron («Golden Eagle»). With nine «Adir» (F-35I Lightning II) aircraft in Israel, the platform will soon undergo an initial fitness inspection.

The first two «Adir» (F-35I Lightning II) stealth fighters landed in Israel about a year ago, and seven additional aircraft have arrived since on three separate occasions. Throughout the past year, the stealth fighter underwent a series of tests and experiments in which the Israeli Air Force (IAF) learned to operate the new platform such as live munition fire and aerial refueling. Next month, the squadron will undergo a fitness inspection in which the IAF’s stealth fighters’ capabilities and readiness will be validated. Upon the completion of the inspection, the «Adir» (F-35I Lightning II) will become operational.

 

Specifications

Length 51.4 feet/15.7 m
Height 14.4 feet/4.38 m
Wingspan 35 feet/10.7 m
Wing area 460 feet2/42.7 m2
Horizontal tail span 22.5 feet/6.86 m
Weight empty 29,300 lbs/13,290 kg
Internal fuel capacity 18,250 lbs/8,278 kg
Weapons payload 18,000 lbs/8,160 kg
Maximum weight 70,000 lbs class/31,751 kg
Standard internal weapons load Two AIM-120C air-to-air missiles
Two 2,000-pound/907 kg GBU-31 JDAM (Joint Direct Attack Munition) guided bombs
Propulsion (uninstalled thrust ratings) F135-PW-100
Maximum Power (with afterburner) 43,000 lbs/191,3 kN/19,507 kgf
Military Power (without afterburner) 28,000 lbs/128,1 kN/13,063 kgf
Engine Length 220 in/5.59 m
Engine Inlet Diameter 46 in/1.17 m
Engine Maximum Diameter 51 in/1.30 m
Bypass Ratio 0.57
Overall Pressure Ratio 28
Speed (full internal weapons load) Mach 1.6 (~1,043 knots/1,200 mph/1,931 km/h)
Combat radius (internal fuel) >590 NM/679 miles/1,093 km
Range (internal fuel) >1,200 NM/1,367 miles/2,200 km
Maximum g-rating 9.0

 

Airborne Laser

The Air Force Research Lab (AFRL) awarded Lockheed Martin $26.3 million for the design, development and production of a high-power fiber laser. AFRL plans to test the laser on a tactical fighter jet by 2021. The contract is part of AFRL’s Self-protect High Energy Laser Demonstrator (SHiELD) program, and is a major step forward in the maturation of protective airborne laser systems.

Lockheed Martin is helping the Air Force Research Lab develop and mature high energy laser weapon systems, including the high energy laser pictured in this rendering (Credit: Air Force Research Lab)
Lockheed Martin is helping the Air Force Research Lab develop and mature high energy laser weapon systems, including the high energy laser pictured in this rendering (Credit: Air Force Research Lab)

«Lockheed Martin continues to rapidly advance laser weapon systems and the technologies that make them possible», said Doctor Rob Afzal, senior fellow of laser weapon systems at Lockheed Martin. «We have demonstrated our ability to use directed energy to counter threats from the ground, and look forward to future tests from the air as part of the SHiELD system».

The SHiELD program includes three subsystems:

  • SHiELD Turret Research in Aero Effects (STRAFE), the beam control system, which will direct the laser onto the target;
  • Laser Pod Research & Development (LPRD), the pod mounted on the tactical fighter jet, which will power and cool the laser;
  • Laser Advancements for Next-generation Compact Environments (LANCE), the high energy laser itself, which can be trained on adversary targets to disable them.

LANCE is designed to operate in a compact environment, and as such, the Lockheed Martin team focused on developing a compact, high efficiency laser within challenging size, weight and power constraints.

«Earlier this year, we delivered a 60 kW-class laser to be installed on a U.S. Army ground vehicle. It’s a completely new and different challenge to get a laser system into a smaller, airborne test platform. It’s exciting to see this technology mature enough to embed in an aircraft», said Afzal. «The development of high power laser systems like SHiELD show laser weapon system technologies are becoming real. The technologies are ready to be produced, tested and deployed on aircraft, ground vehicles and ships».

Lockheed Martin has more than 40 years of experience developing laser weapon systems. The LANCE contract leverages technology building blocks from internal research and development projects, including the ATHENA system and ALADIN laser, as well as contract experience gained from programs such as the U.S. Army’s Robust Electric Laser Initiative (RELI) program.

Norwegian F-35A

On November 3rd, three Norwegian F-35A Lightning II aircraft flew from Fort Worth, Texas and landed at Ørland Air Base, Norway.

3 F-35s entering Norwegian air space (Credit: Helge Hopen, Norwegian Armed Forces)
3 F-35s entering Norwegian air space (Credit: Helge Hopen, Norwegian Armed Forces)

«Receiving the first three aircraft is a major milestone for Norway. On November 10th, Norway will celebrate First Aircraft Arrival of the first three F-35s on Norwegian soil. Achieving this milestone is a major step towards increased operational capability for the future», says Major General Morten Klever, Program Director for the F-35 program in Norway’s Ministry of Defence.

«This is an historic event. The arrival of the first F-35 in Norway at this time shows that we have reached the timeline set for the acquisition. The program delivers on all key criteria: time, cost and performance. Today we are both proud and happy. The Royal Norwegian Air Force is looking forward to starting their training with the F-35», says Major General Klever.

The three aircraft, the first to be delivered to Norway, took off from Fort Worth, Texas at 06.35 AM Norwegian time November 3rd and landed at 03.57 PM the same day at Ørland Air Base.

From 2018, Norway will receive six aircraft annually up until, and including, 2024.

November 3rd the three aircraft landed at Ørland (Credit: Torbjørn Kjosvold, Norwegian Armed Forces)
November 3rd the three aircraft landed at Ørland (Credit: Torbjørn Kjosvold, Norwegian Armed Forces)

 

Specifications

Length 51.4 feet/15.7 m
Height 14.4 feet/4.38 m
Wingspan 35 feet/10.7 m
Wing area 460 feet2/42.7 m2
Horizontal tail span 22.5 feet/6.86 m
Weight empty 29,300 lbs/13,290 kg
Internal fuel capacity 18,250 lbs/8,278 kg
Weapons payload 18,000 lbs/8,160 kg
Maximum weight 70,000 lbs class/31,751 kg
Standard internal weapons load Two AIM-120C air-to-air missiles
Two 2,000-pound/907 kg GBU-31 JDAM (Joint Direct Attack Munition) guided bombs
Propulsion (uninstalled thrust ratings) F135-PW-100
Maximum Power (with afterburner) 43,000 lbs/191,3 kN/19,507 kgf
Military Power (without afterburner) 28,000 lbs/128,1 kN/13,063 kgf
Engine Length 220 in/5.59 m
Engine Inlet Diameter 46 in/1.17 m
Engine Maximum Diameter 51 in/1.30 m
Bypass Ratio 0.57
Overall Pressure Ratio 28
Speed (full internal weapons load) Mach 1.6 (~1,043 knots/1,200 mph/1,931 km/h)
Combat radius (internal fuel) >590 NM/679 miles/1,093 km
Range (internal fuel) >1,200 NM/1,367 miles/2,200 km
Maximum g-rating 9.0

 

Steel Orca

Lockheed Martin will support the growth of the U.S. Navy’s family of unmanned undersea systems under a design phase contract valued at $43.2 million for Orca, the U.S. Navy’s Extra Large Unmanned Undersea Vehicle (XLUUV).

Lockheed Martin engineers in Palm Beach, Florida, will design an Extra Large Unmanned Undersea Vehicle, Orca, for the U.S. Navy to support the Navy’s mission requirements (Image courtesy Lockheed Martin)
Lockheed Martin engineers in Palm Beach, Florida, will design an Extra Large Unmanned Undersea Vehicle, Orca, for the U.S. Navy to support the Navy’s mission requirements (Image courtesy Lockheed Martin)

XLUUV Orca is a two-phase competition, including the currently awarded design phase and a competitive production phase for up to nine vehicles to meet increasing demands for undersea operational awareness and payload delivery.

This long-range autonomous vehicle will perform a variety of missions, enabled by a reconfigurable payload bay. Key attributes include extended vehicle range, autonomy, and persistence. Orca will transit to an area of operation; loiter with the ability to periodically establish communications, deploy payloads, and transit home. A critical benefit of Orca is that Navy personnel launch, recover, operate, and communicate with the vehicle from a home base and are never placed in harm’s way.

«With each new undersea vehicle that Lockheed Martin designs, we bring to bear the state-of-the-art in technology, and innovative system integration of those technologies, to increase the range, reach, and effectiveness of undersea forces and their missions», said Frank Drennan, director, submersibles and autonomous systems, business development. «With decades of experience supporting the U.S. Navy’s mission, our engineers are approaching this design with a sense of urgency and continued agility».

Lockheed Martin has over four decades of experience in unmanned and robotic systems for sea, air and land. From the depths of the ocean to the rarified air of the stratosphere, Lockheed Martin’s unmanned systems help our customers accomplish their most difficult challenges.

Lockheed Martin employees in Palm Beach, Florida, will perform the work on Orca, with additional support from employees at the company’s locations in Manassas, Virginia, Syracuse, New York, and Owego, New York.