The effects of any budget/program decisions made since the information was collected during 1997-98 are NOT reflected in the National Security Space Road Map (NSSRM).

(U) Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3)

-Road Map
-Text Version

Overview (U):

(U) The effort to improve the PATRIOT system and its ballistic missile defense capabilities continues with this latest upgrade called the PATRIOT Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) nears completion. These series of enhancements will preserve its position as one of the fundamental ballistic missile defense systems in the U.S. arsenal.

(U) The Patriot System employs a high velocity, hit-to-kill (HTK), surface-to-air missile to provide high- and medium-altitude defense against short range ballistic missiles, aircraft, air-to-surface, surface-to-surface and cruise missile. Patriot has completed fielding to U.S. forces and is deployed in CONUS, Europe, Korea, and Southwest Asia. Germany, Japan, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and Israel are currently participating in Patriot acquisition programs while discussions with other interested allies for Patriot acquisition are ongoing.

Description (U):

(U) Today's Patriot System evolved from a mobile all-weather surface-to-air missile system formulated in 1961. Full-scale development was completed in 1982 providing an air-transportable, effective air defense. Modifications to permit engagement of tactical ballistic missiles were conceived in the late 1970s and were implemented in two phases. The Patriot Advanced Capability-1 (PAC-1) phase included modifications to the search and track algorithms as well as software changes to allow the phased array radar to view at elevation angles from 45 degrees to nearly 90 degrees. PAC-1 was first flight tested in 1986. The PAC-2 missile had an improved fuse and warhead plus further amendments to the guidance algorithms. The AN/MPQ-53 radar had software changes to detect smaller radar cross section (RCS) targets. The PAC-2 system was first flight tested in 1987, and operational PAC-2 systems were used in Desert Storm in 1991, clearly demonstrating its TBM defense capability of destroying non-maneuvering TBMs.

(U) The PAC-3 development is a series of evolutionary steps of increasingly more sophisticated versions of the PATRIOT system. The firtst step, called configuration 1, was the development of the PATRIOT Quick Response Program (QRP) and its deployment in 1993. This was an intermediate system that came out as a direct response of the Gulf War and increasing danger of missile proliferation. This was the first PAC-3 system and it fielded a number of improvements, especially in battle management, command, control, communications and Intelligence (BMC3I) and incorporated the Guidance Enhancement Missile (GEM).

(U) In 1998, configuration 2 of the PAC-3 was fielded using PAC-2 and GEM interceptors. Configuration 2 features further improves and modifies the radar, communications, and other systems.

(U) In 1999, the process will continue with the PAC-3 configuration 3. PAC-3 configuration 3 will be the first to feature the new PAC-3 missile in conjunction with GEM and earlier missiles used in configurations 1 and 2. The PAC-3 missile is a smaller interceptor which results in increased firepower and improved lethality. The new interceptors, when combined with an enhanced radar, improved survivability, and a launch point determination capability, will allow the PATRIOT air and missile defense to increase battlespace and range.

User Impact (U):

(U) To be supplied.

Programmatics (U):

(U) Programmed.

Images (U):

PAC-3PAC-3 launch
This Table Is Unclassified.

Related Initiatives (U):
THAADTheater High Altitude Air Defense (THAAD) System
This Table Is Unclassified.

Related Requirements (U): None.

Related Categories (U):
Ground-Based Missile DefenseGround Based Missile Defense
This Table Is Unclassified.

Road Map Placements (U):

This Table Is Unclassified.

Requirements, Funding and Additional Hotlinks (U):

(U) None.

Lead Office (U):


Point of Contact (U):

(U) National Security Space Road Map Team, NSSA, Open Phone: (703) 808-6040, DSN 898-6040.

Date Of Information (U):

(U) 21 November 1997


(U) For comments/suggestions contact: Office of the National Security Space Architect (NSSA), 571-432-1300.

(U) Road Map Production Date: 23 June 2001

The effects of any budget/program decisions made since the information was collected during 1997-98 are NOT reflected in the National Security Space Road Map (NSSRM).