Lockheed Martin from US secures $615M contract for HIMARS rocket launchers production expansion

United States, DALLAS, April 28, 2023 – American Company Lockheed Martin has been awarded a $615 million full-rate production contract by the U.S. Army for the manufacture of additional M142 HIMARS rockets/missiles launchers and related equipment. The production will take place at Lockheed Martin's Precision Fires Center of Excellence in Camden, Arkansas, and aims to expand the U.S. Army's fleet of launchers as well as fulfill international orders.
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U.S. Army Soldiers from A Battery, 5th Battalion, 3rd Field Artillery Regiment, 1st Multi Domain Task Force, conduct training on Pohakuloa Training Grounds, Hawaii, Nov. 4, 2022. (Picture source U.S. DoD)

Jay Price, Vice President of Precision Fires for Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control, emphasized the company's collaboration with customers and suppliers to increase production capacity and meet the urgent demand for the combat-tested launcher. He also noted the steps taken to reduce manufacturing lead time and meet the growing need for these systems.

This contract follows previous agreements to increase production capacity and expedite the manufacture of HIMARS rockets/missiles launchers. Paula Hartley, Vice President of Tactical Missiles for Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control, highlighted the rising demand for precision fires products such as HIMARS and GMLRS, and expressed pride in partnering with the Army to deliver these game-changing capabilities at an unprecedented pace.

The M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) is a lightweight, mobile artillery rocket launcher developed by Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control for the United States Army and Marine Corps.

The development of HIMARS began in the late 1990s as a more mobile and lighter alternative to the M270 Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS). It was designed to be easily transportable by C-130 and larger aircraft, allowing for rapid deployment in various combat scenarios.

The first HIMARS production contract was awarded to Lockheed Martin in 2002, and the company has since continued to produce and upgrade the system. Production takes place at Lockheed Martin's Precision Fires Center of Excellence in Camden, Arkansas.

The M142 HIMARS entered service with the U.S. Army in 2005, followed by the U.S. Marine Corps in 2007. Since then, it has been deployed in various military operations and exercises, providing long-range, mobile firepower to support Joint All-Domain Operations.

In addition to the U.S. Army and Marine Corps, several international partners have also procured the HIMARS launcher, expanding its global presence. The system is capable of firing a range of munitions, including the Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System (GMLRS) rockets, Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) missiles, the next-generation Precision Strike Missile (PrSM), and Extended-Range GMLRS rockets.

The M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) is capable of firing various types of rockets and missiles, each serving different tactical purposes.

The Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System (GMLRS) rockets offer a range of approximately 70 kilometers (43 miles) and are used for precision strikes against targets such as enemy artillery, air defenses, and fortified positions.

The Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) missiles have a range of around 300 kilometers (186 miles) and are employed for deep-strike missions against high-value targets like command and control centers, logistics depots, and infrastructure.

The next-generation Precision Strike Missile (PrSM) is currently in development and is expected to provide a range of over 499 kilometers (310 miles).

Lastly, the Extended-Range GMLRS rockets, which are also under development, aim to extend the range of the standard GMLRS rockets to about 150 kilometers (93 miles).