A Patriot target vehicle has been successfully launched from Wake Island by Orbital ATK for the U.S. Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center.
Orbital ATK, a global leader in aerospace and defense technologies, successfully launched a PATRIOT Target Vehicle (PTV) for the U.S. Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC). Orbital ATK’s PTV served as an intercept target for the U.S. Army Lower Tier Project Office (LTPO) PATRIOT air and missile defense system.
The PTV launched on September 17, 2017 from Wake Island into Reagan Test Site (RTS) Kwajalein Island. The target flew a southerly course over the western Pacific Ocean. The target and re-entry vehicle were designed, built and tested by Orbital ATK.
“We are very pleased to support the Air Force and Army with a fifth successful target launch—it flew its planned sequence precisely as expected,” said Rich Straka, Vice President and General Manager of Orbital ATK’s Launch Vehicles Division. “We look forward to future tests with the PTV to continue supporting the readiness of the nation’s PATRIOT system.”
Orbital ATK has been supporting the U.S. Air Force with ballistic target systems for more than 20 years. The development of the Janus PTV target vehicle took just 19 months and included the development of a new re-entry vehicle. This development activity relied heavily on flight-proven designs from other Orbital ATK launch programs, such as the Medium Range Target, Targets and Critical Measurement Program, and Operational Test Two vehicle.
Orbital ATK is one of the country’s most experienced developers and operators of missile defense-related launch vehicles. The company supports virtually all of the country’s major missile defense programs with highly reliable and cost-effective target vehicles. Orbital ATK produces its missile defense interceptors and related target vehicles primarily at the company’s engineering and manufacturing facility in Chandler, Arizona, and its vehicle assembly and integration facilities at Vandenberg Air Force Base, California, and Huntsville, Alabama.
In addition to the Patriot program, Orbital ATK’s target vehicles support testing of the U.S. Navy’s Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense system, the Missile Defense Agency’s Ground-based Midcourse Defense system (GMD), and the U.S. Army’s THAAD system. Orbital ATK also produces the Coyote ramjet-powered supersonic naval target vehicle used to test the self-defense systems of U.S. Navy ships.