U.S., Japan Successfully Conduct First SM-3 Block IIA Intercept Test
(Source: Missile Defense Agency; issued Feb 04, 2017)
WASHINGTON --- The U.S. Missile Defense Agency, the Japan Ministry of Defense, and U.S. Navy Sailors aboard USS John Paul Jones (DDG 53) successfully conducted a flight test Feb. 3 (Hawaii Standard Time), resulting in the first intercept of a ballistic missile target using the Standard Missile-3 (SM-3).
The SM-3 Block IIA is being developed cooperatively by the United States and Japan to defeat medium- and intermediate-range ballistic missiles. The SM-3 Block IIA interceptor operates as part of the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense system and can be launched from Aegis-equipped ships or Aegis Ashore sites.
At approximately 10:30 p.m., Hawaii Standard Time, Feb. 3 (3:30 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time, Feb. 4) a medium-range ballistic missile target was launched from the Pacific Missile Range Facility at Kauai, Hawaii. John Paul Jones detected and tracked the target missile with its onboard AN/SPY-1D(V) radar using the Aegis Baseline 9.C2 weapon system. Upon acquiring and tracking the target, the ship launched an SM-3 Block IIA guided missile which intercepted the target.
"Today's test demonstrates a critical milestone in the cooperative development of the SM-3 Block IIA missile," said MDA Director Vice Adm. Jim Syring. "The missile, developed jointly by a Japanese and U.S. government and industry team, is vitally important to both our nations and will ultimately improve our ability to defend against increasing ballistic missile threats around the world."
Based on preliminary data the test met its primary objective. Program officials will continue to evaluate system performance based upon telemetry and other data obtained during the test.
The flight test, designated SM-3 Block IIA Cooperative Development (SCD) Project Flight Test, Standard Missile (SFTM)-01, was the third flight test of the SM-3 Block IIA guided missile, and the first intercept test. This test also marks the first time an SM-3IIA was launched from an Aegis ship and the first intercept engagement using the Aegis Baseline 9.C2 (BMD 5.1) weapon system.
Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense is the naval component of the U.S. Ballistic Missile Defense System. The MDA and the U.S. Navy cooperatively manage the Aegis BMD program. The Missile Defense Agency's mission is to develop and deploy a layered Ballistic Missile Defense System to defend the United States, its deployed forces, allies and friends from ballistic missile attacks of all ranges in all phases of flight.
Next-Gen Standard Missile-3 Completes First Intercept Test
(Source: Raytheon Co.; issued Feb 04, 2017)
PACIFIC MISSILE RANGE FACILITY, Hawaii --- The U.S. Navy and Missile Defense Agency (MDA) have completed the first successful intercept flight test of a Raytheon Company (RTN) Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) Block IIA, a defensive weapon designed to defeat short- to intermediate-range ballistic missile threats.
Crew members onboard the USS John Paul Jones (DDG-53) launched a SM-3 Block IIA, which successfully engaged and destroyed a land-launched target resembling an advanced ballistic missile threat.
"The SM-3 Block IIA program continues to reflect MDA's commitment to maturing this regional ballistic missile defense capability for the defense of our nation, its deployed forces and our allies abroad," said Dr. Taylor W. Lawrence, Raytheon Missile Systems president. "This test success keeps the program on track for deployment at sea and ashore in the 2018 timeframe, building on Raytheon's unequalled fifteen-year history of exo-atmospheric intercepts."
The test's primary objective was a successful intercept. The mission was also designed to evaluate key missile system performance, including the kinetic warhead, divert and attitude control system functionality, nosecone performance, steering control section function, booster performance and separation and the second and third stage rocket motor performance and separation.
The interceptor's kinetic warhead has been enhanced to best address advanced and emerging threats, with improvements to the search, discrimination, acquisition and tracking functions. The kinetic warhead, along with larger rocket motors, allows SM-3 Block IIA to engage more sophisticated threats and protect larger regions from short- to intermediate-range ballistic missile threats, providing greater operational flexibility.
The SM-3 Block IIA was flown twice before in successful test demonstrations, both without target intercepts, in order to fully evaluate the missile in flight and prepare for the first intercept test. Future flight tests will continue to evaluate system performance, en-route to a 2018 deployment in support of the European Phased Adaptive Approach Phase 3.
About the Standard Missile-3
SM-3s destroy incoming ballistic missile threats in space using nothing more than sheer impact, equivalent to a 10-ton truck traveling at 600 mph.
-- SM-3 Block IB is deployed at sea and ashore in Romania.
-- SM-3 Block IIA is on track for deployment at sea and ashore in 2018. B
Raytheon Company, with 2016 sales of $24 billion and 63,000 employees, is a technology and innovation leader specializing in defense, civil government and cybersecurity solutions. Raytheon is headquartered in Waltham, Massachusetts.