DAGR guidance system running 12 from 12 in tests
By Mike Hanlon
January 6, 2009
January 7, 2009 Coming soon to somewhere hopefully not near you. DAGR is a semi-active laser guidance kit that adapts to 2.75-inch/70mm rockets to provide guided-rocket performance comparable to that of the precision-strike laser-guided HELLFIRE II missile. DAGR is being developed by Lockheed Martin to fill the gap between unguided rockets and the HELLFIRE weapon system by providing a precision-strike, air-to-ground weapon for lightly-armored high-value targets close to civilian assets or friendly forces, while limiting collateral damage. This week saw the first live warhead ground launch test of DAGR and it maintained a perfect 12-for-12 success rate in contractor-funded flight tests. Conducted at Eglin Air Force Base, the latest test demonstrated DAGR's vehicle penetration and time-delayed fuzing when a DAGR-equipped rocket armed with a live warhead penetrated the side of a stationary vehicle before detonating inside.
"The live warhead test demonstrated DAGR's ability to increase lethality and reduce collateral damage. The delayed fuze actuation allows the rocket time to penetrate an exterior before the warhead detonates, ensuring defeat of the threat," said Jerry Brode, DAGR program manager at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. "We are very pleased with the test results. DAGR provides Warfighters with greater options on the battlefield."
Lockheed Martin developed the DAGR system with internal funding. The system includes the rocket and four-pack container that mounts on HELLFIRE compatible launchers.
The DAGR system allows quick and seamless integration on all rotary-wing HELLFIRE platforms, including the Cobra, Apache, Seahawk, Kiowa and Tiger. DAGR is designed to be compatible with the M299 family of launchers, which is currently under evaluation. It provides single-switch operational flexibility with multiple variants of HELLFIRE, for cost-effective multi-mission capability from a single platform.
In guided flight tests, DAGR has repeatedly demonstrated its precision strike and objective maneuverability capabilities, hitting short- and long-range off-axis targets within one meter of the laser designated aim point. This provides Warfighters with increased capability and engagement envelope. In the short range, DAGR is capable of easily engaging targets moving at up to 60 miles per hour and up to 15 degrees off-boresight. From extended ranges and high altitudes, DAGR is capable of engaging targets that are within a 12-kilometer diameter circle below the firing platform.
DAGR integrates proven seeker, guidance, electronics, integrated flight simulation, and countermeasures technologies developed on HELLFIRE and Joint Common Missile (JCM) to provide a highly lethal and precise 2.75-inch/70mm weapon. Our baseline DAGR guidance kit offers 2.75-inch/70mm rockets lock-on-after-launch and lock-on-before-launch capability, target handoff, enhanced built-in test, and laser coding from the cockpit. Its off-axis capability increases the engagement envelope, providing additional field of view for angle-of-attack, moving targets, and wind.
Accompanied by Lockheed Martin’s 4-pack launcher, the DAGR system allows quick and easy integration on all HELLFIRE platforms including Cobra, Apache, Seahawk, Kiowa and Tiger helicopters. Fully compatible with the M299 and M310 “smart” launchers, DAGR increases launcher load out by up to four times and provides single-switch operational flexibility, drawing upon a payload that includes DAGR as well as multiple variants of HELLFIRE for multi-mission capability.
Additionally, due to DAGR’s compatibility with the HELLFIRE weapon system, the usual resources for fielding a new weapon system – development, training, additional equipment and force structure – are avoided.