Army names hypersonic project office director

By Ashley Tressel / February 25, 2019 at 4:56 PM

The Army's new hypersonic project office at Redstone Arsenal, AL, will be headed by Maj. Gen. Neil Thurgood.

Army Space and Missile Defense Command chief Lt. Gen. James Dickinson announced Thurgood's appointment at an industry luncheon in Huntsville, AL, last week, according to the command.

Thurgood previously served as the Missile Defense Agency's director for test, also located at Redstone Arsenal.

The office he is now in charge of is being established to bring all three military services together in their efforts to capitalize on a new class of long-range, ultrafast maneuvering missiles, Col. John Rafferty, director of the long-range precision fires cross-functional team, told reporters last fall.

The project office is tasked with developing the Common Hypersonic Glide Body, or C-HGB, which the Army, the other services and MDA will adapt "to meet their specific requirements," as well as managing the Army's Long-Range Hypersonic Weapon program, according to the SMDC.

The Army invited eight companies to a "secret" industry day in October to discuss the LRHW, but has yet to set an acquisition strategy for the program or release a request for proposals seeking a prime contractor to integrate the system's components.

An SMDC spokesman told Inside Defense this month the new office is still in the early organizational stages.