The Army awarded Lockheed Martin [LMT] its first production contract for its most advanced Patriot missile: the Advanced Capability (PAC)-3 Missile Segment Enhancement under a $610 million modification issued March 28.

The production order follows the Army’s successful Milestone C decision earlier this year.

PAC-3 Missile Segement Enhancement Image: Lockheed Martin
PAC-3 Missile Segement Enhancement
Image: Lockheed Martin

The modification order includes 92 one-pack MSE missiles for the United States, 50 launcher modification kits and associated ground equipment, tooling and initial spares. Some of the launcher modification kits are for Kuwait.

“These enhancements are the natural, pre-planned evolution of a system that was first demonstrated 20 years ago,” said Scott Arnold, vice president of PAC-3 programs at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. “Every current Patriot-using nation is a candidate to upgrade their PAC-3 systems to the PAC-3 MSE.”

The award from Army Contracting Command, Redstone Arsenal said $873.8 million from previous modifications were obligated at the time of the award.

The PAC-3 MSE expands the defended battlespace with its revolutionary two-pulse solid rocket motor, which provides increased performance in both altitude and range, the company has stated. At the same time, the missile uses the same proven hit-to-kill technology that the PAC-3 missile uniquely brings to the Patriot system. The PAC-3 MSE missiles are manufactured in single canisters for flexibility.

The contract is expected to be completed by May 31, 2016. The work will be done in Grand Prairie, Lufkin, and El Paso, Texas; Camden, Ariz.; Chelmsford, Mass; Ocala, Fla.; Huntsville, Ala.; and Anaheim, Calif.