Lockheed Martin received a U.S. Air Force task order totaling more than $32
million for the development of a Weapon Data Link (WDL) capability that will
enable the extended-range JASSM system to engage relocatable and time-critical
targets. The JASSM air-to-surface standoff missile system is the world's first
stealthy conventional cruise missile.
The WDL will provide the JASSM-ER with two-way, secure,
beyond-line-of-sight-communications capability with the Combined Air Operations
Center (CAOC). The COAC may send target location updates and changes to the
missile while it is in flight. The missile will report its position and status
until impact. This communications link will provide the warfighter with an
increased capability to engage relocatable and time-critical targets and is a
key enabler of a future maritime interdiction capability in the missile.
The WDL system will use the standardized data link architecture for
network-enabled weapons developed by a joint service Weapon Data Link Network (WDLN)
Advanced Concept Technology Demonstration (ACTD) program. Lockheed Martin was a
key participant in the WDLN ACTD whose primary purpose was to specify, design,
implement and demonstrate standardized tactical weapons communications
architecture. The JASSM-ER will be the first cruise missile to use the
military's standardized data link architecture for network enabled weapons.
The U.S. Air Force and Lockheed Martin successfully demonstrated the WDL
capability during flight test demonstrations conducted in November 2005.
Lockheed Martin ACTD avionics configured with a beyond-line-of-sight-capable WDL
transceiver was installed in a test aircraft. During the demonstration, the test
aircraft communicated beyond-line-of-sight, weapon in-flight-tracking data and
received retargeting data from a simulated CAOC.
A 2,000-pound class weapon with a dual-mode penetrator and blast fragmentation
warhead, JASSM-ER will cruise autonomously in adverse weather, day or night,
using a state-of-the-art infrared seeker in addition to the anti-jam GPS to find
a specific aimpoint on the target. Its stealthy airframe makes it extremely
difficult to defend against. The missile is planned for initial employment on
the B-1B aircraft platform. Structural testing confirmed that the JASSM-ER
missile design will be compatible with the B-2, B-52 and F-16 aircraft that
currently employ JASSM. The extended range cruise missile has a range greater
than 500 nautical miles.
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