Lockheed Martin has successfully completed the critical design review (CDR) of its long-range discrimination radar (LRDR) programme, which is designed to protect the US from ballistic missile threats.
The review was completed on schedule and the system is now expected to move towards its fabrication, demonstration and test phase.
Lockheed Martin’s successful execution of the CDR validated that the LRDR system’s hardware and software components have achieved Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 7 and Manufacturing Readiness Level 7.
The Missile Defense Agency (MDA) previously awarded a $784m contract to Lockheed Martin in 2015 to aid the development, construction and testing of the radar system, which is intended to support a layered ballistic missile defence strategy.
The LRDR is a solid-state gallium nitride-based, S-Band radar that is capable of discriminating between threats at long distances by using the inherent wideband capability of the hardware coupled with advanced software algorithms, Lockheed stated.
It forms a part of the MDA’s ballistic missile defense system (BMDS) and is set to provide acquisition, tracking and discrimination data to allow separate defence systems to lock on and engage ballistic missile threats.
Lockheed Martin LRDR programme director Chandra Marshall said: “This team has achieved every milestone, including this CDR, on schedule since contract award in 2015.”
“With the success of CDR, LRDR is on track for initial operating capability or IOC in 2020.”
Additionally, Lockheed Martin conducted a Facilities Design Review for the LRDR equipment’s shelter design in October.
Work on LRDR is primarily being conducted in New Jersey, Alaska, Alabama, Florida and New York in the US.