Tech & Kit

U.S. Army Successfully Launches Non Line of Sight-Launch System Precision Attack Missile

Warren, MI – The U.S Army announced that it has recently completed two successful tests of Non Line of Sight Launch System’s (NLOS-LS) Precision Attack Missile at White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico. As part of the Army’s effort to provide Future Combat System (FCS) technologies to its Infantry Brigade Combat Teams, the NLOS-LS will provide Infantry Soldiers with a rapidly deployable and network linked long range precision fires delivery system. Currently, Infantry and Special Operations Forces do not have precision fires capability without augmentation from artillery or air support.

The NLOS-LS consists of a containerized launch unit with self-contained tactical fire control electronics and software for remote and unmanned operations. Each launch unit houses 15 Precision Attack Missiles. The NLOS-LS’s Precision Attack Missile is a vertical launched munition capable of engaging moving targets using automatic target acquisition. The missile receives target information prior to launch, and can receive and respond to target location updates during flight. The missiles are capable of transmitting near-real-time information in the form of target imagery prior to impact.

The NLOS-LS has been under evaluation by Soldiers of the Army’s Evaluation Task Force since early 2008. Located at Ft. Bliss, TX, the Army Evaluation Task Force tests and evaluates FCS equipment. Today, these Soldiers are helping to develop/validate doctrine, organization and training for the NLOS-LS’s use by Infantry Soldiers.Currently, Infantry and Special Operations Forces do not have precision fires capability without augmentation from artillery or air support.

In early July, the successful launches proved the NLOS-LS’s Precision Attack Missile’s stability in cruise and guidance modes and its ability to operate as a node on the network using its onboard radio. According to LTC Fred Hughes, Army NLOS-LS Assistant Product Manager, “The test marked the first time an Army missile with an on-board radio transmitted both missile status while in flight and a preloaded, simulated target image just prior to impact.”

Additionally, the missile proved that it can, just prior to impact, transmit a target image through the Single Channel Radio Set radio. This gives the Commander the ability to visually ensure that the correct target was attacked. Initial reviews of the video and telemetry data show that all test primary and secondary system objectives were met. The missile flew an estimated 23 kilometers and performed several critical g-maneuvers up to 6g’s.

Successful completion of this launch moves NLOS-LS closer to complete system testing which is scheduled to take place in 3rd Quarter FY09.

NLOS-LS will play an integral role in the FCS Spin Out 1 Limited User Test (LUT) planned for next summer. The LUT will support a production decision allowing NLOS-LS and the other FCS systems to field to an Infantry Brigade Combat Team in 2011. Additionally, the NLOS-LS will be used by the U.S. Navy on its Littoral Combat Ship to provide a modular, persistent, responsive, networked, rapidly deployable and flexible precision strike capability against naval targets.

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