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Lockheed Martin awarded contract to develop low-cost, subsonic cruise missile

The U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory awarded Lockheed Martin a $110 million contract on Wednesday to develop a low-cost, subsonic cruise missile with swarming capabilities, known as the Gray Wolf.

Lockheed Martin was awarded a five-year, phase 1 contract to develop and demonstrate the Gray Wolf program, which will protect against Integrated Air Defense (IAD) system threats.

Plans call for the Gray Wolf cruise missile to have open architecture and a modular design that allows for fast prototyping and spiral growth. Networked, collaborative behavior will foster the missile’s swarming capabilities.

“Lockheed Martin’s concept for the Gray Wolf missile will be an affordable, counter-IAD missile that will operate efficiently in highly contested environments,” Hady Mourad, the advanced missiles program director for Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control, said. “Using the capabilities envisioned for later spirals, our system is being designed to maximize modularity, allowing our customer to incorporate advanced technologies such as more lethal warheads or more fuel-efficient engines when those systems become available.”

The Gray Wolf program will be segmented into four spiral-development phases. The first phase, which is expected to continue through late 2019, will produce initial demonstrations for an F-16 aircraft.

“Our AFRL customer will benefit from decades of Lockheed Martin experience in building high-quality, low-cost systems like GMLRS while capitalizing on the experience of our team in developing and integrating advanced cruise missiles such as JASSM and LRASM on military aircraft,” Mourad said.

Aaron Martin

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