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Details Emerge On Army’s Failed NLOS-LS Missile

by Greg on April 16, 2010

In testimony before lawmakers yesterday, David Duma, OSD’s Principal Deputy Director for Operational Testing and Evaluation (OT&E), detailed failings of the Army’s Non-Line of Sight Launch System (NLOS-LS).

During the most recent tests carried out in February, new navigation software caused six of seven total system aborts. Overall missile reliability is just 61 percent, well below the 85 percent requirement. The missile’s problems appear to be with its infrared seeker; missiles using the IR seeker hit only 5 out of 11 times during tests last year and again this year.

During limited user tests in February, the first operational flight test of the NLOS-LS, only two of the Precision Attack Munition missiles fired hit their targets; two missiles impacted more than 14 kilometers from the target.

The Army has identified some of the problems, including data misinterpretation by the missile’s onboard computer, motor problems and a circuit board failure. OSD recommended that the Army conduct more flight tests once the problems have been corrected.

Army Lt. Gen. Robert Lennox, Deputy Chief of Staff Army G-8, said needed fixes are being made and asked lawmakers for patience and to await further tests.

– Greg

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{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Vitor April 16, 2010 at 4:14 pm

So, crappy software, crappy hardware and crappy engine. Congrats! The US Army just looked like a third world country trying to develop their first weapons during the 80s.

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Project Thor April 16, 2010 at 1:49 pm

*Let's not even bring up the York*. At the cost of each missle, it should come with a bottle of Scotch and a good hooker….

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Moose April 16, 2010 at 7:45 pm

Not quite a "failed missile" as a missile that "is failing" currently. Far from a lost cause and still a good system to have.

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ohwilleke April 16, 2010 at 8:43 pm

Have they not heard of quality control in military contracting? This is a missile their taking about, not an Microsoft(R) product.

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WillyPete April 17, 2010 at 2:08 am

Moose… IS it a good system to have?
Or, is it an advertising claim that you "should want" this system, regardless of whether it actually works, or not?
We've spent a LOT of money on this thing, and it's not like there aren't other missile systems out there!
This ain't the Osprey!
Ohwilleke, yes, they HAVE heard of quality control in military contracting!
And, every time that phrase gets mentioned it, they fire the poor dumb schlub who implied that it even matters!
As Dick Johnson said in Robocop: "No one cares if it actually works!" :(

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Brian April 19, 2010 at 1:30 pm

Dick Jones, not Dick Johnson.

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tomato April 17, 2010 at 11:40 pm

reminds me of the patriot missles

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Locarno April 19, 2010 at 5:47 am

14 Kilometres….

I was kind of hoping that was a typo the first time. The tests were only at 35 clicks range – how in the name of all that's holy did it miss by half the total range to the target?

….And, as an afterthought, in which direction?

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Alice April 22, 2010 at 2:17 pm

The rabbit is out of the box with lots of quality issues…………Off with their heads!

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Ben April 26, 2010 at 4:27 pm

Although the missile has problems, it probably has more to do with the contractor for the missile. The rest of the system, CLU and Mission controller, have performed great. It would be a shame to waste the CLU or Mission planner because of the missile. There are other missiles that can be vertical launched.

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