Lockheed Martin to supply MK 41 VLS for Type 26

US_Navy_030303-N-3235P-503_A_topside_view_of_the_forward_MK-41_Vertical_Launching_System_(VLS)_aboard_the_guided_missile_cruiser_USS_San_Jacinto_(CG_56)BAE Systems has selected Lockheed Martin’s MK 41 vertical launch system (VLS) to equip its Type 26 Global Combat Ship for the Royal Navy and other customers.

In a March 1 statement, Lockheed Martin said the MK 41 VLS is the only system capable of launching anti-air, anti-submarine, surface-to-surface and strike-length missiles.

“Lockheed Martin has a long and successful partnership with the Royal Navy, and we look forward to working with BAE Systems to integrate the MK 41 VLS with the Type 26,” said Paul Livingston, Group Managing Director of Lockheed Martin UK Rotary and Mission Systems.

“The MK 41 VLS will provide the Royal Navy’s Type 26 Global Combat Ships with a proven and cost-effective vertical launching solution.”

Each Type 26 will be equipped with three eight-cell MK 41 VLS modules, and BAE Systems’ has placed an initial order for nine MK 41 VLS modules to equip the three ships of the class.

“The signature of this contract is another important milestone in the ongoing delivery of the UK’s Type 26 program,” the head of the Type 26 program at Defence Equipment and Support in the UK’s Ministry of Defence’s procurement organisation, Mike Holstead said. “The vertical launch system will be a key part of the capability of the new frigate fleet, and an essential tool for Royal Navy in operations to defend the UK and her interests.”