ORLANDO, Fla. (January 19, 2001) - Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control's Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile (JASSM) successfully performed its first development test at White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico today. It was the first flight using a seeker to guide to a target. This is the first of eight contractor development test and evaluation (CDT&E) flights that are part of Engineering and Manufacturing Development (EMD). The test met all objectives.
Launched from a U.S. Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon flying at Mach 0.80 and 15,000 feet above the New Mexico desert, the JASSM cruise missile successfully separated from the F-16, deployed its wings and tail, and started its engine. After weapon release, the missile navigated via predetermined waypoints and descended to a selected altitude above ground level for target ingress. The missile performed a terminal maneuver that enabled the missile to achieve the desired impact angle and accuracy. The imaging infrared seeker and the automatic target correlator (ATC) algorithm successfully reduced the target impact guidance error.
This flight is the first of eight contractor development test and evaluation (CDT&E) flights to prove out the JASSM on the F-16 and the B-52 host aircraft platform. These tests will demonstrate a maximum number of key and critical system parameters. Each flight will be an end-to-end test, with successive tests providing a more detailed exercise of the total JASSM system from intelligence and mission planning to bomb impact assessment and target destruction. This EMD phase of testing will continue to qualify the JASSM design against the system performance specification requirements and allow for manufacturing process prove out and validation prior to low rate initial production (LRIP).
This series tests JASSM's ability to hit critical coordinates and for the first time evaluates the seeker, which "visualizes" the target, and the mission planning software, which is used to plan the missiles flight route to target and to plan target attack. "The last series of tests proved that JASSM flies, glides, and maneuvers at the appropriate altitude, range, and speed in the airspace," says Mike Inderhees, Lockheed Martin JASSM program director. "Now, the successful completion of the first development test establishes the viability of the seeker and mission planning software and demonstrates JASSM's ability to fly to and hit the target." "Achieving these critical markers brings the program closer to an LRIP decision and more importantly, closer to having the missile in the users' inventory," says JASSM Air Force program director, Terry Little.
One of the Department of Defense's highest priority programs, JASSM is designed to give Air Force and Navy pilots long-range standoff capability against a wide array of high value, heavily defended targets. Its GPS satellite navigation system, state-of-the-art infrared seeker, 1,000-pound penetrator warhead, and stealth airframe makes it extremely difficult to defend against.
With JASSM on their aircraft, pilots will be able to launch the missile from well outside the range of enemy air defenses, and it will cruise automatically in weather, day or night, with pinpoint accuracy and destroy the pilot assigned target. The 2,250-pound, 14-foot long missile is designed for launch from the F-16, B-52, F/A-18, B-1, and B-2.
Located in Orlando, Florida, and Dallas, Texas, Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control, a world leader in electro-optics, smart munitions, advanced combat, missile, rocket, and space systems, is an operating element of Lockheed Martin Systems Integration business unit based in Bethesda, Maryland. Missiles and Fire Control is supported by Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company - Palmdale, located in Palmdale, California. Lockheed Martin Corporation, also headquartered in Bethesda, is a highly diversified global enterprise principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture and integration of advanced-technology systems, products and services. The Corporation's core businesses are systems integration, space, aeronautics, and technology services.