Lockheed Martin has successfully carried out a controlled flight test of the US Navy’s long-range anti-ship missile (LRASM) surface-launch variant.
Conducted from the navy’s Self Defense Test ship at the Point Mugu Sea Range, California, the event marked the third successful surface-launched LRASM test.
The operational LRASM was fired from the MK41 VLS launcher, which flew a pre-planned low-altitude profile, collecting aerodynamics agility data, and then returned to its pre-determined destination.
The test proved the maturity of the missile, which loaded mission data using the modified Tactical Tomahawk Weapon Control System (TTWCS+), and aligned mission data with a moving ship in a dynamic at-sea environment.
Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control LRASM surface-launch director Scott Callaway said: “This successful flight test demonstrates Lockheed Martin’s readiness to answer the US Navy’s need for new anti-surface warfare capabilities as part of the ‘distributed lethality’ concept.
“This LRASM flight test from a US Navy surface ship VLS highlights the successful collaboration between Lockheed Martin and the US Navy.”
In 2013 and 2014, the LRASM was also tested successfully from a ground-based MK 41 VLS Desert Ship.
Based on the joint air-to-surface standoff missile extended range (JASSM-ER) system, the LRASM is designed to meet the needs of navy and United States Air Force (USAF) warfighters in a robust, anti-access / area-denial threat environment.
Featuring a multi-modal sensor, weapon data link, and an enhanced digital anti-jam global positioning system to detect and destroy enemy threats, the LRASM missile is armed with a 1,000lb penetrator and blast-fragmentation warhead.
Lockheed is planning to continue with testing of the LRASM on other surface ship applications, including topside, deck-mounted launchers.
Image: LRASM launched from B-1B Lancer. Photo: courtesy of DARPA.