Warning

 

Close

Confirm Action

Are you sure you wish to do this?

Confirm Cancel
Member Login
Posted: 3/1/2006 10:03:38 AM EDT
LOCKHEED MARTIN SUCCESSFULLY CONDUCTS GUIDED FLIGHT TEST OF ADVANCED PRECISION KILL WEAPON SYSTEM II
ORLANDO, FL, March 1, 2006 --


Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) yesterday conducted a successful ground-launched medium-range guided test vehicle (GTV) flight of the “HELLFIRE® Junior” missile it is offering for the U.S. government’s Advanced Precision Kill Weapon System (APKWS) II requirement.

“The successful GTV flight is a major milestone for APKWS II,” said Rick Edwards, vice president - Tactical Missiles at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. “Our previous successful ballistic test vehicle flights and the many tests that led up to these were all important, but here, we were trying to hit a target for the first time and we did it. The pre-contract investment in risk-reduction testing by us and our industry teammates continues to pay off.”

Lockheed Martin’s suppliers include two companies whose components were critical to the GTV success: HR Textron, Santa Clarita, CA (NYSE: TXT), which provides the control actuation system (CAS); and Honeywell, Minneapolis, MN (NYSE: HON), which provides the inertial sensor assembly (ISA).

The test was conducted on the C-72 test range at Eglin AFB, FL. The established objectives for the GTV flight were to demonstrate safe launch and separation characteristics, stable flight and performance of the seeker de-roll bearing assembly and the semi-active laser guidance.

“The rocket hit the target board 2.8 kilometers downrange and the impact was less than half a meter from the laser spot designation,” said Steve Barnoske, director - Tactical Missiles at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. “According to the flight telemetry and range tracking data, we met all the objectives. This means that ‘HELLFIRE® Junior’ is on track to provide precision strike in a low-cost, smaller, yet lethal package.”

The APKWS II is a 2.75-inch laser-guided rocket that will provide crews of the U.S. Army Apache and Marine Corps Cobra attack helicopters and other platforms with precision-strike capability against targets that do not require a 7-inch HELLFIRE missile—an option not presently available. This low-cost alternative will destroy non-armored targets that are close to civilian assets and/or friendly forces.

Lockheed Martin has delivered more than 90,000 laser-guided munitions to the warfighter, and in total has produced more than 135,000 laser-guided systems, including HELLFIRE, Copperhead, Paveway II Laser Guided Bombs and Laser Guided Training Rounds. Lockheed Martin has over 30 years of experience and investment in precision Semi-Active Laser technology.

Link Posted: 3/1/2006 10:08:03 AM EDT
Is that tube launched?
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 10:09:41 AM EDT

Originally Posted By SmilingBandit:
Is that tube launched?



Yes, it's the same as the Hydra rockets. IIRC 7 and 19 round tubes.
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 10:13:33 AM EDT
Seems kind of pricey to replace the standard Hydra.
What's wrong with the 30mm/20mm (in volume)?
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 10:14:27 AM EDT
So this could be adapted to fit on A10s, F16s and other mudhens that use 2.75" rockets?
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 10:15:24 AM EDT
wow... if these fit in standard pack launchers one attack chopper can carry say 100 LGMs.....
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 10:19:18 AM EDT

Originally Posted By SJSAMPLE:
Seems kind of pricey to replace the standard Hydra.
What's wrong with the 30mm/20mm (in volume)?




not the same, these are guided
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 10:19:20 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Blackmagic94:
So this could be adapted to fit on A10s, F16s and other mudhens that use 2.75" rockets?



Pretty much.
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 10:20:51 AM EDT

Originally Posted By COLE-CARBINE:

Originally Posted By SmilingBandit:
Is that tube launched?



Yes, it's the same as the Hydra rockets. IIRC 7 and 19 round tubes.



+1

Just what I like to see, take existing off-the-shelf technology and modifying it to one's needs. In this case, the rocket motor/propellant section of the rocket has been proven in combat at least since Vietnam. The rocket launcher tube assembly also has 30+ year combat proven record also.
In the past, some contractor would design a whole new weapon system from the ground up costing mucho $$$ and years of testing. The only thing needing testing here is the new guidance unit and warhead.
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 10:23:05 AM EDT

Originally Posted By MuRDoC:

Originally Posted By SJSAMPLE:
Seems kind of pricey to replace the standard Hydra.
What's wrong with the 30mm/20mm (in volume)?




not the same, these are guided



Yeah, I figured that from the article.
Putting a laser seeker and maneuvering package on what was a cheap rocket doesn't seem that cost effective. No matter what they say is "cheap", they're comparing it to the Hellfire.
Is the warhead punch more than a unitary (not Hydra) warhead?

What is wrong with the 30mm punch?
Granted, these rockets will be used sparingly.
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 10:25:18 AM EDT
Raytheon has been really good about making munitions cheaper since 9/11. The cost of a tomahawk is now between 300k-600k a unit compared to the previous verison that was 1.2 million plus a unit.
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 10:27:42 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/1/2006 10:29:37 AM EDT by eodtech2000]

Originally Posted By SJSAMPLE:
Seems kind of pricey to replace the standard Hydra.
What's wrong with the 30mm/20mm (in volume)?



Actually it is not, it gives fixed and rotory wing aircraft another precision weapon at their disposal and will save $$$ for not having to launch a Hellfire everytime. They can save the expensive Hellfire for more rugged targets, the less rugged targets can get a 2.75" guided rocket for a trip to meet Allah.

The nice thing about this is, only a few aircraft can use a Hellfire but virtually all fixed/rotory "attack" aircraft can fire the 2.75" rocket. Hell, I can't see why it can't even be put on trucks or other vehicles, beats having to use a Tow 2.

Link Posted: 3/1/2006 10:28:32 AM EDT
Christ, when I first saw this thread title, I was like "WTF? Wal-mart has a competitor, and they sell air-to-mud munitions to the public?!?! I SO can't wait for one of them to open near me!"...

Then I saw Lockheed-Martin..and my dreams were dashed
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 10:36:08 AM EDT
Are these missiles FAF?

Bomber
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 10:45:31 AM EDT
I'd like four please, for the hood of my truck.
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 10:46:15 AM EDT

Originally Posted By COLE-CARBINE:
The APKWS II is a 2.75-inch laser-guided rocket ... with precision-strike capability ... will destroy non-armored targets that are close to civilian assets and/or friendly forces.




Originally Posted By SJSAMPLE:
Seems kind of pricey to replace the standard Hydra.
What's wrong with the 30mm/20mm (in volume)?



volume != precision
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 10:50:01 AM EDT
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 10:53:09 AM EDT

Originally Posted By thebomber:
Are these missiles FAF?

Bomber



Laser guided.
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 3:54:16 PM EDT
bump
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 4:01:30 PM EDT

Originally Posted By osprey21:
I'd like four please, for the hood of my truck.



Group buy!
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 6:21:04 PM EDT
Hell, give me some to deal with tailgaters in their shiny new SUVs/trucks.
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 6:33:43 PM EDT
I wonder how many could a Predator carry?
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 6:49:38 PM EDT
Our main enemies dont ride in tanks these days.
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 6:59:17 PM EDT

Originally Posted By raven:
Our main enemies dont ride in tanks these days.



It's not for tanks, but thin skinned vehicles like a Toyota truck.
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 7:30:40 PM EDT
Well, considering how crappy soviet/russian armor has fared vs. US weapons in the last two decades, this new "hellfire lite" will still probably be capable of defeating nearly anything our troops come against that is mobile. The only area in which it will lack is against fixed targets(bunkers, etc).

Imagine though, just how effective this weapons system will be.

Currently, small helo's are used all over the place. The current 'Littlebird' type helo is fast, light and monouverable, yet not all that functional as a good fire support aircraft. Yes, they mount some weapons but those are restricted to mini-guns, standard 2.75 rockets (unguided) hellfires (limit 4), or stingers (also limit 4).

So imagine you are a country looking for effective, fairly inexpensive, on demand, precision CAS for your troops. Most attack helo's are stupidly expensive. Smaller helos such as the Kiowa, the venerable Huey, and the littlebird are severely restricted by their payloads. miniguns? soft skinned targets only, and you gotta be REAL close to use them. Hellfires? limit 4, expensive as hell. 2.75 inch rockets? only as accurate as a pilot moving faster then hell trying to avoid all the damn RPG's flying up into the wild blue yonder because he has to be making a gun run much like the mini-guns, just with alittle more distance. All in all, not too terribly accurate or precision guided at all.

Enter these new mini-me hellfires. A little bird can cary 20 or 40 or so of these little buggers depending on rocket pod size(sorry, not sure of exact amount they are capable of carrying, but I KNOW its more than 4), precision guided, ranged weapon so the pilots can stay a bit further from the fight and thusly the aircraft is less vulnerable, and the munitions are good against (probably) nearly all sov-block armored vehicles. And its way cheaper to boot. For the cost of one single apache helo, you could probably buy 10 littlebirds outfitted with a weapons system such as this.

Cost effective? you bet. Capable of bringing decent firepower down on badguys in CAS type missions in direct support of combat troops? Absolutely. multi-mission adaptable and ideally suited for the GWOT in both urban terrain and wide open areas? I would venture a "yes" in this category as well.

If these truly do work as advertised, I am all for them.

It definitly is a sign though, of how we are moving away from the cold war concepts of defending against massive armored and arial forces to combating smaller more mobile enemies in much more varied terrain where the enemy will be using a multitude of vehicle and weapons options and our weapons systems must be mulit-mission capable with little or not modification to match the current threat level associated with such an agressor.

Chris (Arfcoms Dr. Evil....."I want sharks with frikken hellfires on their heads.")
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 7:33:59 PM EDT

Originally Posted By COLE-CARBINE:

Originally Posted By raven:
Our main enemies dont ride in tanks these days.



It's not for tanks, but thin skinned vehicles like a Toyota truck.



I know. What I mean is, the Hellfire was made to take out tanks, and our main threat arent tanks anymore. We're not going to fight an Iraq-type war again, for as long as I can imagine. So why waste the resources on a standard Hellfire-type missile when something half as big could do the job?
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 7:50:30 PM EDT
Think a predator could carry a 7 round pod of these suckers? What were they carrying hellfire wise, 2 max or was it only 1?

With the guidance and stuff do these carry a lower amount of explosives, is it a shaped charge, maybe I missed that in the article?
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 8:37:13 PM EDT

Originally Posted By raven:

Originally Posted By COLE-CARBINE:

Originally Posted By raven:
Our main enemies dont ride in tanks these days.



It's not for tanks, but thin skinned vehicles like a Toyota truck.



I know. What I mean is, the Hellfire was made to take out tanks, and our main threat arent tanks anymore. We're not going to fight an Iraq-type war again, for as long as I can imagine. So why waste the resources on a standard Hellfire-type missile when something half as big could do the job?




The APKWS II is a 2.75-inch laser-guided rocket that will provide crews of the U.S. Army Apache and Marine Corps Cobra attack helicopters and other platforms with precision-strike capability against targets that do not require a 7-inch HELLFIRE missile—an option not presently available.
Link Posted: 3/2/2006 3:00:44 AM EDT

Originally Posted By AR-15Fan:
Think a predator could carry a 7 round pod of these suckers? What were they carrying hellfire wise, 2 max or was it only 1?

With the guidance and stuff do these carry a lower amount of explosives, is it a shaped charge, maybe I missed that in the article?



The "Predator" carries two Hellfires. The Army's version is "Warrior" and it has a bigger engine that can run on diesel and carries four. The rocket pod hasn't been cleared as of yet, because it simply hasn't been tested. There's no point in messing with it until the PK(precision kill) is available.

Warhead size will probably be about the same as a 81mm mortar or so. The guidance package takes up room, but because the PK only has to go so far, you can gain back room by changing the rocket motor configuration.

To give you an idea of what the envelope is with the airframe, the 2.75" airframe is used for not only the old 2.75, and the Hydra 70, but also the old Redeye and the current Stinger. So you can tailor the airframe within a pretty wide performance band.

The M200 (19 shot) pod is the old 7 shot pod with another layer of rockets on the outside of it. The RMS (Rocket Managment System) allows you to select the inner or outer zone if required, so there's always been a capablity to carry mixed loads of rockets and select between two. So you will still be able to run HE, WP, Nails, and even the "wall in space" AP clusters while carrying the PK.

The biggest plus of the PK will be it's ability to shoot VERY close to friendly troops. In a city fight, it allows you to develop the situation faster and safer if you don't have to pull back troops to light up some bad-guy with rockets. It will make it alot easier to hit pinpoint targets without having to get too close. Also troops in trouble won't be at as high a risk than if you used unguided rockets or a big ass warhead like the Hellfire.
Link Posted: 3/2/2006 3:10:48 AM EDT
Is there any plans to mount this on vehicles? Imagine putting a 19-round pack on a Humvee, or a LAV, or STRYKER? Ok, sure, you'd have to equip each vehicle with a laser designator, but so what?
Link Posted: 3/2/2006 3:33:30 AM EDT
Link Posted: 3/2/2006 3:51:52 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Lert:
Is there any plans to mount this on vehicles? Imagine putting a 19-round pack on a Humvee, or a LAV, or STRYKER? Ok, sure, you'd have to equip each vehicle with a laser designator, but so what?

Hmmmm, strap it to the side of the RWS (remote-controlled .50cal) on top of the Stryker? I've seen some proposals to strap a Javelin there...

Kharn
Link Posted: 3/2/2006 4:37:18 AM EDT
Sounds like a perfect tool for CAS in an Urban Environment.

Bomber
Link Posted: 3/2/2006 4:51:51 AM EDT
very cool putting a smart missile in a hydra sized envelope. more and more of hte predator hits are straight personell or unarmored cars, so kinda makes sense to have a couple instead of one. plus in urban warfare this would seem to give our helicopters flying combat support alot more felxibility to discriminate their tragets.
Link Posted: 3/2/2006 5:33:13 AM EDT
I have a feeling that Israel will buy a lot of these (or develop their own solution)-it fits their MO well and will reduce collateral damage a lot.
Link Posted: 3/2/2006 6:02:27 AM EDT

Originally Posted By SJSAMPLE:

Granted, these rockets will be used sparingly.



Not as sparingly as a Hellfire....
Link Posted: 3/2/2006 6:30:29 AM EDT

Originally Posted By TheOtherDave:

Originally Posted By SJSAMPLE:

Granted, these rockets will be used sparingly.



Not as sparingly as a Hellfire....



Used sparingly? HA.

Once they get these I doubt a dumb Hydra will ever be used again except in training.
Just like we hardly ever drop a dumb bomb anymore.

There are almost NO area targets big enough for unguided weapons anymore. And yet we then have another problem in that nearly all the PGMs in our inventory are too big for blowing up houses near friendly troops.

Thats why the JDAM has been shrunk to 500 and now 250 pounds. And also why we have versions filled with concrete instead of explosive.
Link Posted: 3/2/2006 7:04:07 AM EDT
Damn, a Cobra carrying 76 of these Hellfire Juniors could do some damage!
Top Top