Trident II D5 Missile Scores Record 134 Test Flights In A Row
Sunnyvale CA (SPX) Jun 23, 2010
The U.S. Navy conducted successful test flights June 8 and 9 of four Trident II D5 Fleet Ballistic Missiles (FBMs) built by Lockheed Martin. The Navy launched the unarmed missiles from the submerged submarine USS Maryland (SSBN 738) in the Atlantic Ocean.
This test marked the 131st, 132nd, 133rd and 134th consecutive successful test flights of the Trident II D5 missile since 1989 - continuing a more than 20-year record of reliability that is unmatched by any other large ballistic missile or space launch vehicle.
"We are proud to support the Navy in its crucial strategic deterrence mission," said Melanie A. Sloane, vice president of Fleet Ballistic Missile programs, Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company, the Navy's Trident missile prime contractor.
"These successful missile tests demonstrate the readiness and reliability of the entire Trident II D5 Strategic Weapon System and the unflagging commitment to excellence of the full Navy and industry team."
The Navy launched the missiles as part of a Follow-on Commander's Evaluation Test. The Navy conducts a continuing series of operational system evaluation tests to assure the safety, reliability, readiness and performance of the Trident II D5 Strategic Weapon System, as required by the Department of Defense's National Command Authority. The Navy conducts the tests under the testing guidelines of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Each missile was converted into a test configuration using a test missile kit produced by Lockheed Martin that contains range safety devices and flight telemetry instrumentation.
First deployed in 1990, the D5 missile is currently aboard OHIO-class submarines and British VANGUARD-class submarines. The three-stage, solid-propellant, inertial-guided ballistic missile can travel a nominal range of 4,000 nautical miles and carries multiple independently targeted reentry vehicles.
Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company, Sunnyvale, Calif., has been the strategic missile prime contractor for the U.S. Navy Strategic Systems Programs since the inception of the Fleet Ballistic Missile program more than 50 years ago.
Lockheed Martin Space Systems employees, principally in California, Georgia, Florida, Washington, Utah and Virginia, support the design, development, production, test, and operation and sustainment of the Trident Strategic Weapon System.
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