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German air force carries out second international PAC-3 test

The PAC-3 missile destroys its targets by direct, body-to-body impact

NEW YORK (BNS): The German Air Force on Thursday became the second non-American military to carry out a PAC-3 missile flight test, in partnership with the US Army Lower Tier Project Office and Lockheed Martin.

The successful test was carried out at the White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico. The test successfully fired a PAC-3 Missile from a German Patriot fire unit with configuration-3 upgrades.

In September, the Japanese Self Defence Force had successfully carried out the first international PAC-3 missile test at the White Sands Missile Range.

The test demonstrated the Patriot Configuration-3 upgrades to the German Patriot ground system, which includes the PAC-3 Missile Segment launcher electronics and the Fire Solution Computer that are necessary to launch PAC-3 Missiles, officials said.

"Today's successful flight test marks another significant milestone for both the Program Executive Office Missiles and Space and our allies," said Lt Col Anthony Brown, PAC-3 Product Manager. "We continue to build on the legacy of this superb weapon system as a key element for the free world's defense."

"Our German partners have taken an important step in improving their air and missile defense capability with the Patriot PAC-3 System," said Mike Trotsky, vice president Air & Missile Defense Programs at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. "We are very proud to support our German allies in this the second international PAC-3 Missile test."

Lockheed Martin and partners are presently involved in the PAC-3 Missile Segment upgrade to the Patriot air defense system. The PAC-3 Missile Segment upgrade consists of the PAC-3 Missile interceptor, the PAC-3 Missile canister which contains four missiles in the same footprint as one Patriot legacy missile, the Fire Solution Computer that provides engageability solutions and the Enhanced Launcher Electronics System (ELES), which interfaces with the entire family of Patriot missiles.

A statement on the test said these elements have been integrated into the German Patriot system, a high to medium altitude, long-range air defense missile system providing air defense of ground combat forces and high-value assets.

The PAC-3 Missile is designed to counter the evolving Patriot Air Defense System threat spectrum: tactical ballistic missiles, evolving cruise missiles and fixed and rotary winged aircraft. PAC-3 Missiles significantly increase the Patriot systems firepower, since 16 PAC-3s load out on a Patriot launcher, compared with four legacy Patriot missiles.

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