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Lockheed Martin receives Patriot missile contract for Qatar

By Stephen Carlson
The Patriot PAC-3 is an advanced surface-to-air missile system that can target ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, and enemy aircraft. Photo courtesy Lockheed Martin
The Patriot PAC-3 is an advanced surface-to-air missile system that can target ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, and enemy aircraft. Photo courtesy Lockheed Martin

May 16 (UPI) -- Lockheed Martin received a $25.4 million contract modification for foreign military sales to Qatar, the Department of Defense reported Monday. The award goes toward the Phased Array Tracking Radar on Target, or Patriot, surface-to-air missile system.

The variants being worked on include the Patriot Advanced Capability-3, or PAC-3, and and Missile Enhancement Aft Block I redesign. The work will be conducted in Grand Prairie, Texas, and Lufkin, Texas. The program is expected to be completed by May 15, 2020.

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The Patriot PAC-3 is an advanced surface-to-air missile system that can target ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, and enemy aircraft. Unlike conventional surface-to-air missiles that use proximity fragmentation warheads, the PAC-3 uses "hit-to-kill" in order to take down its target.

"Hit-to-kill" uses the kinetic energy of the missile rather than explosives. A Patriot battery can mount 16 of the missiles and use ground-based radar to guide it to its target, with last-second updates provided by radio uplink/downlink. When approaching its target, it activates its own seeker head to help ensure direct kinetic impact on its target.

The Patriot and its variants have been exported across NATO and to many other countries.

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