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Lockheed Martin Multiple Kill Vehicle

Lockheed Martin Multiple Kill Vehicle

Lockheed Martin has reported it's first successful test flight of the Multiple Kill Vehicle L...

Lockheed Martin has recently reported it’s first successful flight of the U.S. Missile Defense Agency’s Multiple Kill Vehicle-L (MKV-L).

The MKV is designed to maneuver into combat areas and intercept all lethal targets, whilst avoiding any countermeasures the enemy may deploy in an attempt to trick the system.

Using tracking data from the Ballistic Missile Defense System as well as it’s own seeking capabilities, the MKV-L is able to locate and destroy multiple targets.

The ‘free-flight hover’ test was carried out on December 2nd at the National Hover Test Facility, Edwards Air Force Base, California. During the test flight, the MKV-L prototype flew at an altitude of around 23 feet for 20 seconds, maneuvering while simultaneously tracking a target.

Rick Reginato, Multiple Kill Vehicle program director, Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company, said:

“This test demonstrated the integrated operation of the MKV-L in near-earth flight,”
This represents a major step forward for the earliest operational payload designed to destroy multiple threat objects with a single missile defense interceptor.”

The test was the first in a series of flights designed to prove the MKV-L’s readiness for more complex flight testing aboard the Ballistic Missile Defense System’s ground-based interceptor currently stationed in Alaska and Southern California.

Randy Riley, MKV-L Hover Test Bed program director, Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company, said:

“Testing the payload in the ground-based, controlled flight environment at the National Hover Test Facility enables us to verify interoperation of components and subsystems as they are incrementally developed and integrated,”

Along with Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company, the MKV-L development team also includes Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne, Canoga Park, Calif.; and Octant Technologies, San Jose, Calif.

No word yet on when the Multiple Kill Vehicle will able to the Military, however if further test flights prove successful, it shouldn’t be too long before it’s deployed.

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