Lockheed Martin Missile & Fire Control meets Bridget Jones

Quote from the 2001 film, the Bridget Jones Diary:

It is a truth universally acknowledged that when one part of your life starts going okay, another falls spectacularly to pieces.

Bridget Jones and Lockheed Martin Missiles & Fire Control can relate.

Today, LMM&FC is proud to announce that the AGM-158 Joint Air-to-Surface Missile (JASSM) is back on track after an 11-month hiatus while the contractor fixed a chronic reliability problem. (I will add web link shortly.)

That alone should make this a good day in Lockheed’s book.

But, on the same day, the German press is reporting that another LMM&FC program is falling apart.

From the BBC Monitoring service:

In a confidential letter to the members of the Budget Committee Ruediger Wolf, Undersecretary for Armament, warned that the controversial project costing billions might possibly have to be ended. Under the clumsy name of Medium Extended Air Defence System (MEADS) Germans, Italians, and Americans wanted to develop a weapon system which was supposed to shoot down not only fighter aircraft, helicopters, and unmanned aerial vehicles but also anti-ballistic missiles with a range of up to 1,000 kilometres.

“Management deficits” among the manufacturers and “a development funding that was clearly underestimated technologically as well as with regard to cost,” writes Armament Undersecretary Wolf, have now led “to the danger of considerable delays and additional costs,” particularly for the radar equipment. However, the ministry did not find out about it until 24 April.

The partners now have “serious concerns” because of the “not acceptable situation.” Should the companies not adhere to the agreements on “costs, performance, time,” threatened Wolf in unwieldy bureaucratic German, they would “be faced with consideration of an end to the programme as a conceivable option.”

In the film, Bridget Jones finally gets the guy and her parents reconcile. LMM&FC has already got its JASSM contract. Let’s see if the company can also get Germany and Italy to reconcile.


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