© Reuters. A HIMARS (Excessive Mobility Artillery Rocket System) missile launcher climbs a 60-degree ramp on a check monitor at Lockheed Martin Camden Operations in Camden, Arkansas, U.S., February 27, 2023. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
By Mike Stone
CAMDEN, Arkansas (Reuters) – Lockheed Martin (NYSE:)’s cell rocket launcher plant in Camden, Arkansas is gearing as much as enhance manufacturing of the HIMARS system after its success on the battlefield in Ukraine drove up demand from different nations, executives mentioned on Monday.
The Excessive Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) is now a well known weapon after cell phone digital camera footage of the struggle in Ukraine confirmed the launchers in motion.
“When you might have a fight confirmed system that’s on the market and within the information – each day – then that is driving that demand,” mentioned Jennifer McManus, the vice chairman for operations of Lockheed’s missile enterprise.
Lockheed Martin makes HIMARS and refurbishes an older model in Camden, a small city southwest of Little Rock.
Due to some investments made over the past yr within the 282,000 sq. foot constructing the place the bottom automobiles are made, Lockheed solely wants a number of upgrades to fulfill that elevated manufacturing price, Lockheed executives mentioned.
The record features a paint sales space, non-skid coating mixer, tire meeting manipulator arm and an axel set up monitor, the executives advised Reuters.
On an earnings name with traders Lockheed’s CEO mentioned “on HIMARS particularly, we have already met with our lengthy lead provide chain to plan for rising manufacturing to 96 of those items a yr.” Lockheed began 2022 with a HIMARS launcher manufacturing price of 48, however has since ramped as much as 60 yr.
The HIMARS launcher had been rising in reputation even earlier than its success in Ukraine.
Poland was cleared in February to buy 18 HIMARS launchers and 468 launcher loader kits that may be in put in on Polish-made vehicles to show into them into comparable launch platforms. Talks for that deal started in 2017, a Lockheed spokesperson advised Reuters.