News

No. 168-98
MEMORANDUM FOR CORRESPONDENTS October 5, 1998

MEMORANDUM FOR CORRESPONDENTS October 6, 1998

The Ballistic Missile Defense Organization (BMDO) and the U.S. Army have announced that the next flight test of the THAAD system is expected to take place during the first quarter of Calendar Year 1999.

On Sept. 18, 1998, the possible delay of the next flight test of the Theater High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) missile system was announced due to a concern involving a component on the missile's seeker. In subsequent analysis Lockheed Martin Missiles and Space Company, Sunnyvale, Calif., determined a need to delay the flight test for approximately three months to allow replacement of the parts and checkout in ground testing. Lockheed Martin Missiles and Space Co. is the prime contractor for the THAAD missile system.

Contamination was discovered in the operational amplifier (OpAmp) during extensive ground testing by the prime contractor. The OpAmp is a small device in the missile's flight seeker which, if contaminated, could cause a short circuit resulting in seeker failure. The contamination was found to exist in several of the OpAmps of a particular lot. The seeker is being developed by Lockheed Martin Infrared Imaging Systems (LMIRIS) of Lexington, Mass.

http://www.defenselink.mil/news/Oct1998/m10061998_m168-98.html