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Lockheed Martin plans to deliver first THAAD air defense missile system to Saudi Arabia in 2023.

| 2021

According to information released by the Defense News website on November 16, 2021, Lockheed Martin plans to deliver the first THAAD air defense missile system to Saudi Arabia in 2023.
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A U.S. Air Force Airmen offloads a THAAD system from a C-17 Globe Master III at Nevatim Air Base, Israel, Mar 1, 2019 . (Picture source U.S. DoD)

In October 2017, the U.S. State Department had made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Government of Saudi Arabia for Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) and related support, equipment, and services for an estimated cost of $15 billion.

The Government of Saudi Arabia has requested a possible sale of forty-four (44) Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) launchers, three hundred sixty (360) THAAD Interceptor Missiles, sixteen (16) THAAD Fire Control, and Communications Mobile Tactical Station Group, seven (7) AN/TPY-2 THAAD radars.

Citing Lockheed Martin website, In 2017, Saudi Arabia expressed its intent to procure more than US $28 billion in integrated air and missile defense, combat ships, tactical aircraft and rotary wing technologies and programs with Lockheed Martin. Today, Lockheed Martin Saudi Arabia is working to support these projects, ensuring they align with Vision 2030 and support the security of the Kingdom for decades to come.

In November 2018, CNBC has announced that Saudi Arabia has signed a letter of offer and acceptance with the United States for Lockheed Martin’s THAAD air defense missile system. In March 2020, Lockheed Martin Corp was awarded a $932 million Pentagon contract for THAAD interceptor missiles, some of which are slated to be delivered to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

The Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) THAAD is a highly mobile, rapidly deployable BMD system designed to shoot down attacking short- and medium-range missiles during their final or terminal phase of flight. The THAAD system is being designed, built, and integrated by Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control acting as prime contractors. Key subcontractors include Raytheon, Boeing, Aerojet Rocketdyne, Honeywell, BAE Systems, Oshkosh Defense, and MiltonCAT.

On 28 May 2008, the U.S. Army activated Alpha Battery, 4th Air Defense Artillery Regiment (A-4), 11th Air Defense Artillery Brigade at Fort Bliss, Texas. Battery A-4 is part of the 32nd Army Air & Missile Defense Command. At the time, the battery had 24 THAAD interceptors, three THAAD launchers based on the M1120 HEMTT Load Handling System, a THAAD Fire Control, and a THAAD radar. THAAD has been deployed in Guam, the United Arab Emirates, Israel, Romania, and South Korea.

The Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) element provides the Ballistic Missile Defense System (BMDS) with a globally-transportable, rapidly-deployable capability to intercept and destroy ballistic missiles inside or outside the atmosphere during their final, or terminal, phase of flight. The THAAD is able to destroy aerial targets at ranges from 150 to 200 km.

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