Defense contracting giant Lockheed Martin Corp. of Bethesda, Md., is splitting its Electronics Systems business into two operating units, Missiles and Fire Control, and Mission Systems and Training, the company announced Oct. 8.

Dallas-based Missiles and Fire Control is the maker of the Theater High Altitude Area Defense System, a missile defense system used for protection against short- and medium-range missiles. The operating unit, now with some 16,000 employees, also builds the Patriot Advanced Capability 3 air and missile defense interceptor.

Washington-based Mission Systems and Training, which will have 19,000 employees, has a portfolio that includes the Aegis Combat System, the nerve center of the U.S. Navy’s Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense System.

The move, effective Dec. 31, brings the number of Lockheed Martin operating units to five, the other three being Space Systems, Aeronautics, and Information Systems & Global Solutions, the company said.

Lockheed Martin’s contract to run the U.S. Department of Energy’s Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, N.M., along with its management responsibilities for the U.K. Atomic Weapons Establishment joint venture, will be transferred from Electronic Systems to the Space Systems business area, according to Jennifer Allen, a company spokeswoman.

Rick Edwards will lead Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control as executive vice president, the company said. Dale Bennett will be executive vice president of Mission Systems and Training.

Lockheed Martin said the restructuring will save $50 million by eliminating the management teams in place in its Electronic Systems business and its Global Training and Logistics division, whose portfolio will be split between the two newly created operating units. The move will affect some 200 jobs, Lockheed Martin said.

Marilyn Hewson, executive vice president of Electronic Systems, will become Lockheed Martin’s president and chief operating officer effective Jan. 1.