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ATACMS Passes Guidance Upgrade Tests (Oct. 8)

DALLAS, TX. --- Lockheed Martin's Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) Block IA Unitary missile successfully completed the first of two tests to demonstrate a new upgraded guidance and control system and new flight software. The test took place at White Sands Missile Range, NM, on September 30. All test objectives were achieved.

The new guidance package will allow a vertical impact trajectory and improve accuracy through the use of an improved Global Positioning System (GPS) capability. The new guidance and control system allows the missile to fly over obstacles, such as mountainous terrain or buildings, and then dive vertically to precisely engage targets. The system utilizes an angled descent in this test.

"ATACMS Unitary's new guidance and control system will provide the U.S. Army with greater lethality and an improved capability to precisely engage targets in urban environments," said Ron Abbott, Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control's vice president - Tactical Missiles. "Lockheed Martin has delivered every ATACMS missile on schedule and on budget over the past 13 years. This is our continuing goal to meet the needs of our customer, and ultimately the warfighter."

Lockheed Martin has manufactured more than 80 ATACMS Block IA missiles and is under contract to manufacture approximately 200 more. This new guidance system will be incorporated into the manufacturing line in early calendar year 2005. The second test of the upgraded system is scheduled for the fourth quarter 2004.

The ATACMS Block IA Unitary missile was combat proven in joint operations during Operation Iraqi Freedom and is the latest addition to the current ATACMS family of munitions. The government furnishes a proven unitary warhead, which Lockheed Martin integrates into new ATACMS Block IA missiles for precision attack out to 300 kilometers. The ATACMS Unitary variant provides the capability to attack high-payoff, time sensitive targets with limited collateral damage.

The Army TACMS Unitary missile is a responsive, all weather, long-range missile, with a high explosive, single burst warhead fired from the Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS) family of launchers, including the MLRS 270A1 launcher and the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS).

Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin employs about 130,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture and integration of advanced technology systems, products and services. The corporation reported 2003 sales of $31.8 billion.

Lockheed Martin's ATACMS Block IA Unitary Successfully Completes Guidance Upgrade Testing