Lockheed Martin’s Joint Air-to-Ground Missile (JAGM) has passed its Defense Acquisition Board review, achieving what’s known as milestone C, allowing the missile to enter low rate production. The JAGM will replace several air-launched missiles including the famed AGM-114 Hellfire, providing single configuration across many platforms.
The new missile will provide precision standoff-strike capability, and will be capable of hitting high-value moving targets, both armored and unarmored, in all weather conditions. JAGM combines semi-active guidance and millimeter-wave radar into a single system, giving the pilots “fire and forget” capability. This was something the Hellfire lacked, as the pilots had to keep a laser trained on moving targets, and likely played a key role in its dismal 35% success rate. The U.S. Navy is hoping the JAGM will provide a much-needed defense against swarming boats. Read more below from Lockheed’s press release.
Lockheed Martin’s (NYSE: LMT) Joint Air-to-Ground Missile (JAGM) system has successfully passed its Defense Acquisition Board review and achieved milestone C. The signed Acquisition Decision Memorandum approves the JAGM system to enter into Low-Rate Initial Production (LRIP).
JAGM is a multi-sensor air-to-ground missile that is the successor to the combat proven HELLFIRE Romeo and HELLFIRE Longbow missiles. Backward compatible with all rotary wing and fixed wing platforms that fire the HELLFIRE® family of missiles, JAGM employs a multi-mode guidance section that offers enhanced performance on the battlefield. The multimode seeker combines improved Semi-Active Laser and millimeter wave radar sensors providing precision strike and fire-and-forget capability against stationary and moving land and maritime targets in adverse weather and obscured battlefield conditions.
JAGM flight tests, including ten Limited User Test flights, were completed across the performance envelope and target requirements over a period of months leading up to the successful milestone C decision. The test results demonstrated the system’s combat effectiveness and technical maturity. Additionally, the program successfully conducted supplier and prime contractor production readiness reviews establishing the program’s readiness to move into LRIP.
The U.S. Army and U.S. Navy awarded Lockheed Martin a 24-month contract for the Engineering and Manufacturing Development (EMD) phase of the JAGM program which included JAGM production, test qualification and integration on the AH-64E Apache and AH-1Z Viper attack helicopters. The EMD phase also established an initial low-rate manufacturing capability in support of three follow-on LRIP options, with U.S. Army Initial Operational Capability expected early 2019.
The JAGM system hardware that demonstrated over 95 percent reliability in flight testing is built on the active HELLFIRE® missile family production line by the same team that has produced over 75,000 missiles with a fielded reliability exceeding 97 percent.
Source: Lockheed Martin