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Lockheed Martin's DAGR Continues Successful Test Program

The first DAGR-equipped rocket in this test event was shot from a range of 4.2 km and 6 degrees off boresight; the second shot, from a range of 5.1 km. Both test shots were direct hits, impacting the target within inches of the laser spot.
by Staff Writers
Orlando FL (SPX) Feb 29, 2008
Lockheed Martin recently completed three successful tests of the DAGR semi-active laser guidance kit for 2.75-inch/70mm rockets - two guided flight tests and a multi-purpose sled test - demonstrating the system's precision-strike accuracy, off-axis capability and delayed fuzing mode.

DAGR is now 6-for-6 in control vehicle and guided test vehicle flights, beginning in February 2006.

The DAGR guidance kit adapts to rockets such as the Hydra 70 and CRV-7, with high explosive and blast fragmentation warheads, to provide guided-rocket performance comparable to that of the precision-strike laser-guided HELLFIRE II missile, and can be launched from both the M299 and M310 "smart" launchers.

Both guided test flights, conducted in January at Eglin Air Force Base, FL, were launched from the all-digital M299 launcher. DAGR-equipped rockets were fired from Lockheed Martin's four-pack launch canister, which is capable of firing through the rocket management system or the HELLFIRE interface.

The first DAGR-equipped rocket in this test event was shot from a range of 4.2 km and 6 degrees off boresight; the second shot, from a range of 5.1 km. Both test shots were direct hits, impacting the target within inches of the laser spot.

The sled test was performed in December 2007 at Redstone Arsenal, AL, and demonstrated DAGR's delayed fuzing mode and ability to penetrate a vehicle. Previous DAGR sled tests validated delayed fuzing against structures, and warhead arena tests validated the guidance kit's blast fragmentation capability.

"Each test event proves DAGR's ability to provide Warfighters the guided-rocket capability they need to defeat emerging threats encountered in urban combat scenarios," said Rick Edwards, vice president of Tactical Missiles at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control.

DAGR's off-axis capability increases the engagement envelope, providing additional field of view for angle of attack and moving targets, allowing pilots to quickly address multiple threats. The ability to delay fuzing provides DAGR with a unique capability against vehicles and structures not currently available for rockets. Its lock-on-after-launch and lock-on-before-launch capability, coupled with precision-strike accuracy, is also vitally important in densely populated areas where limiting collateral damage is a major concern.

Other features of the DAGR guidance kit include target handoff and enhanced built-in-test and laser coding from the cockpit.

"A company-funded effort, DAGR is Lockheed Martin's low-risk solution to filling the capability gap between the combat-proven HELLFIRE II and currently fielded unguided rockets," said Edwards. "Leveraging over 30 years of experience developing and producing precision laser-guided weaponry, DAGR is a fully complementary system to HELLFIRE II, which is the air-to-ground weapon of choice for the U.S. Armed Forces and the armed forces of 15 other nations."

Accompanied by Lockheed Martin's four-pack launcher, the DAGR system allows quick and seamless integration on all rotary-wing HELLFIRE platforms such the Cobra, Apache, Seahawk, Kiowa and Tiger helicopters. Fully compatible with the M299 and M310 smart launchers, the DAGR system provides single-switch operational flexibility, drawing upon a payload that includes DAGR, as well as multiple variants of HELLFIRE, for multi-mission capability from a single platform.

Additionally, due to DAGR's compatibility with the HELLFIRE weapon system, the usual resources for fielding a new weapon system - development, training, additional equipment and force structure - are avoided.

"Lockheed Martin's substantial investment in DAGR demonstrates our belief in the global demand for guided-rocket capability," said Edwards. "We have 10 flights scheduled over the next six months and are looking forward to providing DAGR to help win the War on Terror as soon as this can be accomplished."

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