Lockheed contracted for launch systems

June 15, 2011 at 8:11 AM
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BALTIMORE, June 15 (UPI) -- Lockheed Martin has received an $80.2 million U.S. Navy contract to provide MK 41 Vertical Launching Systems for DDG 51 Class Aegis destroyers.

The MK 41 VLS is a missile launch system installed below deck on surface ships that provides capability to fire a variety of missiles, including anti-air, anti-submarine, surface-to-surface and strike.

"MK 41 VLS will continue to be one of the Navy's premier weapon systems well into the 21st century as the system continually evolves to meet the challenges of increasingly complex emergent threats," said Toan Nguyen, the MK 41 VLS Program Manager in the U.S. Navy's Program Executive Office for Integrated Warfare Systems.

"We have effectively demonstrated the capability to integrate numerous missile types into the MK 41 VLS platform to meet the Navy's mission requirements."

Lockheed Martin said it also will provide launcher spares, upgrade kits and installation equipment under the firm, fixed-price award.

"The MK 41 VLS is combat proven with more than 3,500 successful missile firings," said Colleen Arthur, director of Lockheed Martin's Integrated Defense Technologies business. "We have supported this system for over 30 years and have leveraged its modular configuration and open architecture to continually upgrade it."

MK 41 VLS is in use by 12 navies worldwide with 186 ships in 19 different ship classes.

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