Lockheed Martin-Built Trident II D5 Missile Achieves Record 129 Successful Test Flights In A Row Over 20 Years
Two D5 Fleet Ballistic Missiles Launched in Navy Test in the Atlantic
SUNNYVALE, Calif.- The U.S. Navy conducted successful test flights Sept. 3 and 4 of two Trident II D5 Fleet Ballistic Missiles (FBMs) built by Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT). The Navy launched the unarmed missiles from the submerged submarine USS West Virginia (SSBN 736) in the Atlantic Ocean.
The Trident II D5 missile now has achieved 129 consecutive successful test flights since 1989 – a record unmatched by any other large ballistic missile or space launch vehicle.
“These successful missile tests again demonstrate the readiness and reliability of the entire Trident II D5 Strategic Weapon System,” said Melanie A. Sloane, vice president of Fleet Ballistic Missile programs, Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company, the Navy’s Trident missile prime contractor. “The Navy’s Strategic Systems Programs achieves sustained performance through close government and industry partnerships. Lockheed Martin’s role includes not only missile design, development and production, but also a full range of operations and sustainment support services.”
The Navy launched the missiles as part of a Follow-on Commander’s Evaluation Test. The Navy conducts a continuing series of operational system evaluation tests to assure the safety, reliability, readiness and performance of the Trident II D5 Strategic Weapon System, as required by the Department of Defense’s National Command Authority. The Navy conducts the tests under the testing guidelines of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
For the tests, the missiles were converted into test configurations using a test missile kit produced by Lockheed Martin that contains range safety devices and flight telemetry instrumentation.
First deployed in 1990, the D5 missile is currently aboard OHIO-class submarines and British VANGUARD-class submarines. The three-stage, solid-propellant, inertial-guided ballistic missile can travel a nominal range of 4,000 nautical miles and carries multiple independently targeted reentry vehicles.
Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company, Sunnyvale, Calif., is the prime contractor and program manager for the U.S. Navy’s Trident missile. Lockheed Martin Space Systems employees, principally in California, Georgia, Florida, Washington, Utah and Virginia, support the design, development, production, test and operation of the Trident Strategic Weapon System. Lockheed Martin Space Systems has been the Navy’s prime strategic missile contractor since the inception of the program more than 50 years ago.
The test also involved the Lockheed Martin-integrated navigation subsystem that provides navigation data required to support today’s stringent Trident Weapon System performance requirements. Lockheed Martin Maritime Systems & Sensors Undersea Systems at Mitchel Field, N.Y., has been the prime contractor for the navigation subsystem aboard fleet ballistic missile submarines since 1955.
Altogether, nearly 3,000 employees throughout the Lockheed Martin Corporation support the Navy’s Fleet Ballistic Missile program.
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