TUCSON, Ariz. --- The U.S. Navy is deploying Raytheon Company's Standard Missile-6 for the first time, marking the initial operational capability milestone for the U.S. Navy's newest, most advanced extended range area defense weapon.
"We're very pleased to achieve initial operational capability on schedule," said Capt. Mike Ladner, Surface Ship Weapons major program manager. "The SM-6, with its ability to extend the battlespace, truly offers improved capability for the warfighter. I'm very proud of the entire Standard Missile team on this historic achievement."
The SM-6 provides extended range protection against fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft, unmanned aerial vehicles and cruise missiles. The interceptor combines the airframe and propulsion of legacy Standard Missiles with the advanced signal processing and guidance control capabilities of the Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile (AMRAAM).
"This is a monumental moment for the SM-6 program and signifies a new era of fleet defense for our naval warfighters," said Dr. Taylor W. Lawrence, president, Raytheon Missile Systems. "The SM-6 significantly improves the sailor's ability to strike at various targets at extended range."
Raytheon has delivered more than 50 SM-6 interceptors to the Navy under low-rate production contracts. In September, Raytheon won a contract for $243 million to build 89 new SM-6 interceptors, signaling the start of full-rate production.
SM-6 delivers a proven extended range air defense capability by leveraging the time-tested advantages of the Standard Missile's airframe and propulsion.
The SM-6 uses both active and semi-active guidance modes and advanced fuzing techniques. It incorporates the advanced signal processing and guidance control capabilities from Raytheon's Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile.
Raytheon Company, with 2012 sales of $24 billion and 68,000 employees worldwide, is a technology and innovation leader specializing in defense, security and civil markets throughout the world. Raytheon is headquartered in Waltham, Mass.