Naval Air: June 13, 2001

Archives

: Lockheed Martin is offering the US Navy a new weapon to meet its new missions. The new weapon is a relatively simple combination of two existing weapons: the rocket booster from the existing Vertical-Launch Anti-Submarine (VLA) weapon (in service with the US and Japan), and the new LOCAAS (Low-Cost Autonomous Attack System). Both are made by Lockheed Martin. The Vertical Launch Autonomous Attack System could push its payload of four LOCAAS submunitions up to 100 miles. The LOCAAS weapons are basically small cruise missiles with a laser-radar that can be programmed to look for a specific type of target (e.g., a missile boat instead of a barge, a tank instead of a truck). Released at 20,000 feet, they would glide until the turbojet engines turn on, then search an area about 15 miles square (the four would search an area about 25 miles square). The weapons can communicate with each other, so they can avoid attacking the same target and could even call each other if one of them found several targets. (Each LOCAAS can fly about 100 miles, most of which would be back and forth inside its assigned search box. Each LOCAAS could destroy a missile boat or any ground vehicle, and could cripple a frigate.) Lockheed Martin is including the weapon in its offer for a DD21 Land Attack Destroyer design. The weapon is designed to deal with several types of targets. The Navy expects its next battles to be in Littoral (coastal) waters, where numerous islands and inlets could hide enemy missile boats (or missile trucks). The thought of a running missile battle between expensive US destroyers and cheap enemy corvettes (or trucks) has the Navy's blood running cold. The proposed new weapon would allow a US destroyer to send LOCAAS missiles into an area programmed to look for missile boats (or missile trucks) and destroy them. It could also be used to disrupt an enemy armored unit. Although it would be very expensive to use for this mission, an armored unit could be disrupted if key vehicles were destroyed. (If all of the air defense vehicles were knocked out, the unit would be vulnerable to air attack.) The weapon could also be sent to look for mobile ballistic missile launchers, such as Scuds. The weapon can be fired from the standard vertical launch tubes of US warships.--Stephen V Cole

 


Article Archive

Naval Air: Current 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000 1999 


X

ad
0
20

Help Keep Us Soaring

We need your help! Our subscription base has slowly been dwindling. We need your help in reversing that trend. We would like to add 20 new subscribers this month.

Each month we count on your subscriptions or contributions. You can support us in the following ways:

  1. Make sure you spread the word about us. Two ways to do that are to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  2. Subscribe to our daily newsletter. We’ll send the news to your email box, and you don’t have to come to the site unless you want to read columns or see photos.
  3. You can contribute to the health of StrategyPage. A contribution is not a donation that you can deduct at tax time, but a form of crowdfunding. We store none of your information when you contribute..
Subscribe   Contribute   Close