Missile Defense Agency signs $80 million contract with Lockheed Martin-led team for ballistic re-entry vehicles

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. Lockheed Martin will lead a team that will work on an $80.6 million fixed-price contract with the U.S. Missile Defense Agency (MDA) on modified ballistic re-entry vehicles and separation modules for missile defense tests.

Under the -- which includes options for additional modified re-entry vehicles and mission support -- will develop and produce unarmed re-entry vehicles for integration into target missiles. Subcontractors included in the agreement include Huntsville companies Dynetics, Inc., which will provide the aeroshell structures; and Battelle, which will provide the hit detection system.

Instead of carrying warheads, modified ballistic re-entry vehicles carry to measure the accuracy and effectiveness of the target, interceptor, and missile defense system. Ballistic missile defense systems must be tested against a capable, threat-representative re-entry vehicle; these tests help ensure that the system is ready to detect and destroy enemy missiles.

Sarah Reeves, vice president of Missile Defense Programs at Lockheed Martin Space, says of the vehicles: "The re-entry vehicle is essentially the bullseye for an interceptor missile, and it is also one of the most complex parts of the target."

The contract runs through 2022.

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