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Lockheed Martin Receives $63.7 Million For Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS) Launchers

DALLAS, TX, December 19th, 2002 -- Lockheed Martin has received the first Full-Rate Production (FRP-1) contract for 34 Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS) M270A1TM launchers. The contract value is $63.7 million.

The U.S. Army Aviation & Missile Command (AMCOM) is the contracting agency. Delivery of the launchers is expected to be completed by April 2005.

The MLRS M270A1 launcher incorporates a variety of enhancements to the MLRS M270 launcher, including a new Improved Fire Control System (IFCS) and Improved Launcher Mechanical System (ILMS).

"We are pleased to provide our customer with the most advanced MLRS launcher in a full-rate production run," said Ron Abbott, vice president - Tactical Missiles for Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. "Soldiers who have used the M270A1 are universally impressed with the speed of the system and the ability to accurately fire the entire family of MLRS munitions. MLRS remains the world's premier missile and rocket artillery system."

The M270A1 launcher features an Improved Fire Control System that allows more sophisticated munitions to be fired and reduces operating costs through up-to-date computer processors. The IFCS upgrade includes a new fire control panel with video, a full keyboard, a mass storage device and GPS navigation. With distributed multi-processor technology incorporated, the IFCS processes large blocks of data from new smart munitions within tactical timelines.

Operating and maintenance costs are reduced up to 38 percent because of greater reliability and ease of repair on IFCS parts. The IFCS upgrade also supports the Army's Corps digitization requirements, and allows for future MLRS growth options.

The system also utilizes an Improved Launcher Mechanical System that dramatically reduces the time needed to aim and reload the launcher. In a typical fire mission, the ILMS-equipped launcher is six times faster than the original M270 launcher. Reload time is decreased by more than 30 percent. Crew and launcher survivability will be greatly enhanced because total exposure time on the battlefield will be significantly reduced.

MLRS is the world's most formidable rocket and missile artillery system. Its surface-to-surface ballistic rockets have a range of up to 70 kilometers. A single MLRS launcher can put more than two tons of destructive firepower on a target in one minute and its full load of 12 rockets can cover 30 to 60 acres with thousands of grenade-like submunitions. Each of the submunitions in an MLRS rocket has about the same destructive power as a hand grenade and contains a shaped charge that allows it to penetrate light armor. MLRS M270A1 also fires the Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) family of deep-strike missiles.

Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control develops, manufactures and integrates world-class air defense, fire support, strike weapon, naval munition, combat vision, anti-armor and advanced product solutions and systems for U.S. and international armed forces.

Craig Vanbebber, 972-603-1615

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