Lockheed Takes U.S. Navy Contract for Vertical Launching System

Multi-missile launch lets ships respond to numerous threats

The U.S. Navy has contracted Lockheed Martin to perform engineering design services for the MK 41 Vertical Launching System (VLS) on Ticonderoga-class cruisers and Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyers.

The $17-million, cost-plus-fixed fee contract combines purchases for the U.S. Navy and eight Allied navies under the Foreign Military Sales program. The contract includes options that, if exercised, would bring the total contract value to $104 million over four years.

The multi-missile MK 41 launcher makes it possible for vessels to respond to numerous naval warfare threats, including anti-air, anti-submarine, ship self-defense, land attack and ballistic missile defense.

More than 12,000 MK 41 VLS missile cells have been delivered or are on order. The systems are in service or on order by the navies of 12 nations, for 186 ships in 19 different classes.

The work includes missile integration, software development, integration of VLS into new ships, technical refresh, systems engineering and life cycle support for MK 41 VLS.

"The MK 41 is the most proven below-deck, multi-mission launching system in the world," stated Dan Schultz, v.p./general manager for Lockheed Martin's Ship and Aviation Systems business. "Working closely with the U.S. Navy, we have led the system design team and have been delivering, modernizing and supporting the MK 41 VLS system for more than 30 years. Its capability is second to none."

The work will be performed at Lockheed Martin's locations in Baltimore and Ventura, CA.

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