Lockheed Martin successfully conducted four separate flight tests of the Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System (GMLRS) Unitary rocket at White Sands Missile Range, NM, concluding the first phase of the production qualification testing requirement series for the contract. The test objectives included demonstrating the capability of the GMLRS Unitary rockets in point detonate and proximity modes at short and long range against tactically representative targets. These missions were the last in a series of GMLRS Unitary Phase I Production Qualification Tests (PQT) of the GMLRS Unitary Rocket. “We are very pleased that the Guided MLRS Unitary System is performing so well in Iraq,” said Lt. Col. Mark Pincoski, US Army Precision Guided Munitions and Rockets product manager. “The GMLRS system represents the state-of-the-art in US Field Artillery precision strike capability and everyone on the GMLRS government and contractor team has worked very hard to put this system into the hands of our soldiers.”
Phase II improvements to the GMLRS Unitary will include fuzing and software upgrades to enhance effectiveness and Insensitive Munitions (IM) upgrades to provide the soldier added safety in hostile environments. Guided MLRS Unitary integrates a 200-pound class unitary warhead into the GMLRS rocket, giving battlefield commanders the ability to attack targets up to 70 km away with high precision. This low cost, low risk program will greatly reduce collateral damage by providing enhanced accuracy to ensure delivery of the warhead to the target. Lockheed Martin received a $119 M contract to conduct system development and demonstration (SDD) for a GMLRS variant with a single warhead in October 2003. The SDD contract includes 86 rockets, 71 of which are flight articles, with the balance supporting test and other activities. The contract also provides test hardware to support 26 flight tests for an initial configuration and 39 flight tests of a follow-on configuration.