Image for representation only.

The U.S. Navy today awarded Lockheed Martin $1.54 billion to work on the Intermediate Range Conventional Prompt Strike (CPS) Weapon System.

This modification contract covers design, development, build and integration of equipment for missile flight test demonstrations and fielding, a U.S. DoD release today said.

According to Lockheed Martin, Conventional Prompt Strike (CPS) designs, develops, builds and tests an integrated hypersonic weapon system capable of launch from surface ships and submarines with the ability to conduct a precision strike at Mach 5+ speeds.

In February 2019, the company won $846 million for the design, development, build and integration of large diameter rocket motors, associated missile body flight articles, and related support equipment for Navy Intermediate Range Conventional Prompt Strike Weapon System flight test demonstrations. This award is an early step in developing a hypersonic glide weapon body for all the services by 2025.

Lockheed Martin’s chief executive Marillyn Hewson had said in April that year that the company was working through $2.5 billion in military contracts to develop a variety of hypersonic weapons in a bid to catch up with developments from China and Russia.

In its quest to win the hypersonic weapons development race, the U.S. has opened its arms to allies for them to join its projects. It has also rewritten rules for acquisition — the 5000-series of policy — to make it easier to more quickly deliver hypersonic weapons.

In October 2017, the Navy conducted a successful $160-million test of a hypersonic glide vehicle that flew from Hawaii to the Marshall Islands – about 2,000 nautical miles.